29 February 2012

The Brass Legionnaire

I didn't know the world needed a Roman steampunk novel until I saw those goggles on that galea.

Put a cog on it!

I can't decide if this author has put a "roman helmet" on steampunk, or if the author has put "steampunk goggles" on ancient Rome.

I'll tell you what else the world needs: it needs for The Brass Legionnaire to spawn a massively successful run of sequels and movie adaptations, so I can sell my high-concept adult parody, The Ass Legionnaire, to a porn studio in the San Fernando Valley--where I will then build a sprawling villa in the Roman steampunk style. (I've already received bids on my Coriolanus-inspired porn script, and I didn't even have to change the name.)

The future's so bright, I gotta wear steampunk goggles.

27 February 2012

Eye People

Eye People. The name alone hints at mystery, wonder, even terror. Let us learn of them from their creator. His written description is brief, so I will include it here in its entirety:

"Eye People, are cartoon characters, they are based on People that have a head like an Eyeballs. They have funny sayings and are very fun characters to have in your life! They participate in every sport you can think of, can be found on all kinds of balls, pucks, toys, or clothes, just about anything you can think of ! Eye People will take over the world!"

The only way to stop Eye People is to hide your eyes from them.

This "Comics project" fills me with a vague dread. Eye People's ubiquity, their unblinking gaze, and their seeming lack of anything to do with comics--these traits combine into something out of a nightmare, the Calvin-peeing-on-stuff of a diseased unconscious. Eye People don't have to defile things with their waste: they just watch you... or do they only plan to watch? Might they not have other plans for us?

"Sometimes that [Eye People], he looks right into you. Right into your eyes."

Furthermore, Eye People break down the distinction between singular and plural. Pledge $10 and the creator promises you "a signed copy of an Eye People !" However, the panoptic gaze of Eye People will surveil you whether or not you pledge.

You have already pledged to Eye People.

24 February 2012

" 'The Phantom Bride' A ghost story short film."

It's a film project by Marc Hudson!

Bride... or phantom bride?

Oops--it's actually not Marc Hudson, the new singer for Dragonforce. It's Marc Hudson, the actor-writer-director, the one making a movie wherein "A group of teenagers reminisce on an old ghost story where a Bride, ditched at the altar, murders her ex-fiance and his new lover before taking her on life."

The Bride taking on the new lover after killing her does sound creepy. Or something.

This part I get: "Annoyingly a film is expensive to make, especially a good one! It's amazing how some things, even so little can add up in expense. For example location insurance is easily overlooked but is required by law and can cost thousands of dollars." Annoyingly comma indeed exclamation point.

"Oh, hi Marc."

In their promotional video, the director and his assistant director explain their intention to make an "old-fashioned"  and "classic" ghost story, inspired by the likes of The Sixth Sense (1999) and The Others (2001). These citations scare me more than any ghost. If you want to make your ghost movie sound old-fashioned, there are better titles to drop--The Uninvited (1945), Dead of Night (1945), The Innocents (1961), Carnival of Souls (1962), Kwaidan (1964), even The Shining or The Fog (both 1980)--but to drop those titles, you first have to know that they exist. Dare I voice my fear that the writer-director lacks adequate knowledge of the ghost-movie-makers who have ventured into this cemetery before him? Damn me for a pedant, but I think artists should know about other works in their favored medium, including works created before they were even born.

Speaking of scary, the immediate inspiration for this film came to Hudson during a trip on the Phantom Manor ride at Disneyland Paris (during which, I like to imagine, his fiancee dumped him for a certain other Englishman with even more magnificent hair).

23 February 2012


The creator of JammerUp calls it "an abstract strategy board game modeled after the rules and strategies of modern roller derby."

I love the board's elegance, which puts me in mind of a hybrid of Go and Formula DE. I would play this; I might even buy this.

However, I find something... missing.

At the risk of alienating women and dedicated players of abstract strategy board games, what interests me most about roller derby is not the tactical and strategic thought it demands of players and spectators, nor is it the following of players' careers from team to team, match to match. It's watching sturdy young women in short-shorts knock each other around.

I'm not sure I could stay focused on those glass beads, but I did pledge money toward the game.

22 February 2012

Zombie Wednesday: this is going to be the real thing, not infomercial.

Finally, somebody is making a guide to surviving a zombie apocalypse. I wish I'd thought of something like this ten years ago. Imagine how different our pop-cultural landscape would be today!

"Hi. I'm Simon Pegg, and I fight zombies, but not in this movie.
Furthermore, I did not approve this use of my likeness."

Pros: The FN-FAL rifle, pictured above, always looks cool, and reminds me of 1970s Doctor Who, since UNIT soldiers used the FN-FAL. (<Brigadier> Pegg! Chap with the bloody chin there. Five rounds rapid. </Brigadier>) However, it's only cool if you actually take the trouble to obtain the prop rifle, and take your own photo of it for your Kickstarter page; copping a still from another movie doesn't count.

Cons: the FN-FAL is overkill for a zombie scenario. Assuming that a head-shot is sufficient to take down the shambling undead, any flat-shooting caliber gets the job done. Why would you punish your shoulder with the recoil of a 7.62 x 51 NATO (or .308 Winchester) when a .22 WMR will do, and the widely available .223 Remington is more than enough? If the creator's implied advice regarding firearms is any indication of the quality of the rest of the advice in this "guide," I'm dubious.


For what it's worth, we have the creator's assurance that the project is grounded in reality: "I promise you that this is going to be the real thing, not infomercial, It's going to be real life scenarios where the zombie apocalypse comes to life. This is the Directors Reel, for a special look at what you can espect."

Sadly, and contrary to espectation, the link to the Director's Reel remains broken at the time of writing.

21 February 2012

Zombie Rubs

Hurry! Pledge money for Zombie Rubs!

"People everywhere were consuming lifeless meat which lacked flavor and was devoid of nutrients. It was that lack of taste and nutrition which made so many people susceptible to the spreading plague."

You won't hear me calling for new zombie-related works in any medium, but I love this campaign's combination of zombie tropes and foodie discourse. I'd be surprised if they met their goal, but then again, I'm stunned that more people haven't donated.

20 February 2012

10 Book Series: Luke Banderloft and The McFarven Pirates

I'm not optimistic about this ten-novel fantasy series. Its author, Rocky Perry, describes it: "The books are a mix of Pirates of the Carabean and The Neverending Story.  If you loved them, you will love these books. " 

I doubt it. Pirates of the Carabean [sic] and The Neverending Story are movies, and what we like about novels and what we like about movies are not the same. (I suppose Rocky might be referring to the Pirates of the Caribbean ride at Disneyland, which inspired the movie of the same name, or referring to the novel Die unendliche Geschichte, which inspired the Neverending Story movie.) And since a Kickstarter description is an indication of a writer's attention to his craft, the misspelling, the lack of italics for the titles, and the two spaces after each period don't inspire the greatest confidence. (I realize that this is why publishing houses hire editors and typesetters, but even so: look your best when you put your hand out, people.)

The novels are set in Quephter*, Rocky's open-source fantasy role-playing game setting. I know you shouldn't judge a book by its open-source fantasy RPG setting cover, but we don't have much to go on here, and the art for Quephter cops the lamentable style of Wizards of the Coast's third edition of Dungeons & Dragons. Compromise facial-hair? Check. Conspicuous piercing? Check. "Tribal" tatoo? Check. Gym-rat wish-fulfillment physique? Check. This aesthetic was lame in 2000, and it hasn't improved with age. (Though for all I know, it still sells.)

Haters gonna hate.

Despite all this, the video for Rocky's project moves me. The child squealing in the background and Rocky's mention of Walmart remind me that the future looks bleak for non-Waltons in the right-to-work (for less) state of Georgia. Rocky asks prospective donors only for "the price of a taco" from Taco Bell, and this makes me wonder, Will Rocky's child have to work at Taco Bell when he or she grows up? Neoliberal "competition" means that the worker in one-party China now gets a manufacturing job (under working conditions like those that obtained in the US before organized labor changed them), while the worker in the US gets a job cleaning deep-fryers, priced out of "public" universities--which increasingly train for white-collar jobs that are easier to find in Dubai than in US cities.

Rocky has my sympathy. His books do not.

*I insist on pronouncing that first E as a long E.

17 February 2012

Funded: The Blood and the Life

"A wash of pain ransacked Jesus’ face as he raised his eyes toward the [computer monitor]."

"Once upon a time, a man was attacked by a vampire bat..."
How can a new twist on vampires fail? Vampires, to paraphrase John Lennon, are more popular than Jesus. Throw Jesus Himself into the mix, and the idea is too big to fail.

OK, I'll grant that the notion of Jesus' blood turning people into vampires might actually be grounds for such a project to fail. Then again, the idea of abstinence vampires seems like it should have died on its way to the publisher, so what do I know?

I'm going to start planning that Blade/Jesus/Blacula slash-fiction project that I've been thinking about planning, Scream Christula Scream! If Vampire Jesus becomes the next horror icon, I will be ready to sign my book deal.

Actually, in the spirit of Kickstarter self-publishers, I'm going to start working on my the pitch to movie producers first. ("I imagine at least two sequels...")

16 February 2012

Truth in Advertising: Virus Man

Here's how you get me to pay attention to your Kickstarter campaign: tell me that you need the money to fund "female nudity" in your exploitation movie. (He's already got comics artist Gary Wray.)

We all know that's how exploitation filmmaking works: give the audience cheap thrills, but charge full price. However, even cheap thrills cost money, and the savvy actress will not doff her clothes for a prison-yard mud-wrestling match for free.

(True story: my aunt worked for Troma as a location scout in the eighties, and during the shooting of The Class of Nuke 'Em High, Lloyd Kaufman asked her to explain to the female lead that said lead would have to take her top off in the next scene, but wouldn't be getting paid any more for her trouble.)

So I salute Charles H. Del Rio for his candor. Let's hope Virus Man gets its nudity budget, and goes virus-al.

15 February 2012

Zombie Wednesday: voice-mails I left after watching the Kickstarter video for Dead Fury: Survival

<anonymous tip voice> Hello, Jean-Luc Godard? I've found all those jump cuts you misplaced while you were making Breathless. It appears that some guys in Utah found them, and have used every last one in a video to promote their zombie-survival movie. Who I am isn't important. Just think of me as... un ami. </anonymous tip voice>

"They're coming to get you, Barbara Michel."

<anonymous tip voice> Hello, Shaggy? Some video-editor in Utah has copped your style. Also, if you know anybody who's holding, tell them to meet me at the gelato place on South Grand tomorrow at three. I just need like a dime to hold me over til my cousin gets back from Oregon. </anonymous tip voice>

"Zoinks! Like, not another low-budget zombie movie by white boys!"

<undisguised voice> Hello, George Romero? As much as I love your movies, sometimes I wish your parents had never even met. </undisguised voice>

14 February 2012

The Ice Fisherman, or Big Two-Hearted Ice Monster

Giving your audience a good look at an innovative monster before the final reel is generally a bad idea, but this monster gives me a serious case of the horrors, so I think it's wise to show it to potential backers.

<monster voice> I'm your Kickstarter-campaign-supporter now, Nancy. </monster voice>

Please, monster, could you please... retract your furry... tongues back into your... opening?

I do hope that's your mouth. If it isn't, please do not correct my misapprehension by speaking through some other part of your anatomy. Your face is enough to trouble my sleep.

BAD-MAN (Batman Parody Graphic Novel)

You might think that an artist who doesn't "have visual access right now" might wait until he had visual access to make the promotional video for his Kickstarter project, what with the "visual" being so important to video as a medium. You might also think that if an artist lacked visual access, he might err on the side of making his promotional video no longer than absolutely necessary.

Not Christopher X. Brodeur. His spoken-word video devotes 12 minutes and 16 seconds to promoting his Batman parody. In the opening minute, Brodeur describes the video itself as both "shitty" (true) and "quick" (untrue). This video-sans-motion runs four times as long as most Kickstarter videos, and over six times as long as most good Kickstarter videos.

Artists promoting their work often note their influences. This is one of the few points on which Brodeur is mercifully brief, for he admits, "I don't really follow graphic novels or comics."

A further difference between BAD-MAN and its peers: most Kickstarter projects do not appear to be the product of untreated mental illness.

"I'm Christopher X. Brodeur's beard, and I approve of this message."

Even my fascination with misguided self-promotion has limits, and this "video" lies beyond them. My resolve fails. It's not "so-self-important-it's-good," or "so-inept-it's-good." It just hurts.

Sample the video at your leisure. For now, I will present an example of Brodeur's prose. His description of the project is a single, monolithic paragraph of the kind written by people who should be taking heavy psychiatric drugs, but aren't. Step into its flow anywhere:

... There were some scenes I wrote that chilled me to the bone and others that brought me to tears, and they will you too. MY Bad-Man is merciless and even blinds and burns off the genitals of criminals (and especially billionaire mayors!) using acid! YIKES! I'm infamous for my gallows humor and having the darkest sense of wit ever, and that shows up thruout this brutal book. (I'm arguably the most controversial artist of all time, despite having won shitloads of awards and acclaim -- and even my enemies call me a "genius" which I guess is flattering. And the fact that I've won so many "Best EVER" awards in the Capital of the World [NYC], suggests that it's not my ego talking. I'm also banned from most periodicals in NYC and dozens of performing spaces in NYC, which should tell you how bold my words are! ...

Brodeur the artist shares ground with Frank Miller circa 1986, in that he sees New York as corrupt, he sees previous versions of Batman as inadequately violent, and he sees everybody except the hero as weak, stupid, or venal (or all three). I never thought I'd say it, but I've finally found a comic-book writer that I dislike more than I dislike Miller. I imagine that regardless of my differences with Miller--on politics, gender, justice, history--if we met in person, the two of us could still at least have conversation, taking turns.

Brodeur, however, talks and writes as if no worthy interlocutors exist. His audience consists of persecutors, dupes, and Christopher X. Brodeur.

13 February 2012

Funded: Steampunk Playing Cards

How do you make your deck of playing cards stand out from the rest? Put a cog on it!

"When me and my friend Dinko Kundalic started this project we wanted to make a deck of playing cards that was of the utmost class, cards that were extremely unique and that had art that could trump most decks today. In the course of planning we decided to base the cards somewhat on the steampunk genre, a style that we and many others enjoy."

Did you see this card before? I didn't. Now there's a cog. It's turning. It's free!

<Oxonian> We have solved our first problem, but the ambitious steampunk designer rests not on his laurels (which are carved from brass flywheels). The cog, toothed emblem of scientific and mechanical progress, adorns every other game, book, and corset at the scientific-romance convention. I grant that the cog is necessary, but is the cog sufficient? </Oxonian>

<Cockney> Not on your fork and knife, guv'nor! Your working-man and your gentleman alike's liable to put a deck of cards through no little abuse, sir--cog or no. I say add a coating of the old slang and euphemism. Nothing like your dried slang, properly cured, to shed everything from machine-oil to the old pig's ear, what? </Cockney>

Which is to say, "The cards will be printed on a 300 gsm plastic coated card stock."

Indeed, this assumes that the reader has not already taken the above image in hand, and with a "God Save the Queen!" applied his or her own coating of gsm. It provides an endless blockade against stains.

Everything is Dolphins

The Hutchingsonian Presents Everything is Dolphins, equal parts art book and role-playing game. It's true to its title.

Paint this on your van.

Well, it's not literally true to its title: not everything in the game is dolphins. You can play a false killer whale, too, and the sea teems with non-dolphin creatures with whom player characters can interact. And then there are the artifacts from the extinct human civilization, which your characters can explore when they aren't negotiating with giant octopuses, or trying to rescue merchant clownfish captured by the Shrimp-Cult of the Underkelp. (I made up that last bit, in the hope that it can be the title of the first EOD adventure module, which I will write.*)

Give money to this campaign, or find out just how hard
a creature without hands can swing an axe.

My hope is that Chick Publications will someday print a tract about the dangers of dolphin RPGs.

*In the spirit of Kickstarter, allow me to propose my adventure-module series:

SC1: Against the Shrimp-Cult of the Underkelp
SC2: In the Reefs of the Shrimp-Cult
SC3: Revenge of the Grouper-Priests of the Shrimp-Cult
SC4: Beneath the Seamount of the Shrimp-Cult (tournament adventure)
UKPC1: Captives of the Prawn-Cult (solo adventure)

10 February 2012

The Dragon's Storm Trilogy

"A dream is something that I’ve been chasing for far too long. Now I find myself on the edge of something great.  It’s a chance to publish not just one book, but a trilogy that touches on a world of dragons, humans and would-be gods. I want to do this right, with as much chance and hard work to make it a success as possible."

"Dad, do you feel as smug as you look?"

I'm no dream, but I wouldn't let this author catch me, either. She would probably want me to read her book, and on the matter of dragons, and children taken by dragons, my sympathies lie with Dio.

FYI: http://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=ronnie+james+dio+%22kill+the+trilogy%22&oq=ronnie+james+dio+%22kill+the+trilogy%22&aq=f&aqi=&aql=&gs_sm=e&gs_upl=13367l15739l0l16323l16l14l0l0l0l4l233l2134l0.12.2l14l0

09 February 2012

Fatbikerafting the Arctic

I didn't know of "fatbikes" until I read of Andrew Badenoch's plan to traverse some of the hairiest terrain in North America on one. Don't worry: he's also taking a raft.

Back this.

08 February 2012

After Dark, Coeds

The trailer for the film After Dark suggests that the "hottest night spots" in LA are a hill where "coeds" and vampires watch the clouds speed over downtown.

There's actually a realist motivation for the fast-cloud effect. Most vampires are hundreds of years old, which means that their experience of time is subjectively slower than that of mortal humans. Seven minutes for us feels like one minute to a vampire. Thus clouds that would appear to you or me as if merely drifting over the skyline would appear to vampires as if borne by a gale.

Understand the implications: in this trailer, you see the night sky as it might appear to the eyes of the ravening deceased.

I just realized something: the maker of this project is probably a vampire. Why else would he use the term "coed"? Sure, he looks like he's in his forties, but he's probably well over a hundred. That would also explain the jump cut, the whip-pan, and the portentous zoom. Vampire filmmakers do that kind of thing on purpose, because the more you struggle, in vain, to assign motivation to the techniques you see in their work, the better your blood tastes.

The astute vampire eschews capes for a more up-to-date look.

Note to other vampire filmmakers born before the advent of cinema and electric lights: if you want to make yourself look creepy (sex-offender creepy, not undead creepy, so as not to blow your cover), position yourself in the foreground between two harsh lights in the background, one on either side of the hotel-room bed. Then add a sickly little key light, and no fill.

Fill lights are for cattle.

07 February 2012

The Deepest Play Ever: The Catharsis of Pathos

Give these people money to put on their "post-post-apocalyptical allegory of mother lamadre and her son golden calf."

Read more (but perhaps understand less) here.

06 February 2012

The Implications of Self-Publishing

Say, isn't that Dan De Luca, who played the sociologist in season four of The Wire?

"If you [self-publish] with Jesus, he’s gonna save your soul..."

"Mostly, this book is for my Father, who inspired it with endless discussions of Science, Politics, Religion, and my need to keep an open mind on all fronts. Sadly, he did not get to see the unedited manuscript of the novel, but thankfully, he had read the screenplay that proceeded it. He was the first to say 'You need to make this into a book.' His words have been followed by dozen's of others clamoring for the same thing."

I would clamor for a scene where the Vatican's automatic biohazard safety system engages, trapping the main characters in the secret laboratory deep underground... with "dozen's" of ravenous clones of Jesus of Nazareth chasing some kids through the kitchen.

A Trilogy of Trilogies (...of Trilogies?)

The Odin Fallacy: mistaking aspiration for potential.

The person who commits the Odin Fallacy exhibits behavior that suggests he or she is on the verge of achieving monumental things, when actually he or she is not. For example, the Odin Fallacist who fancies himself the next Chosen Author/Robert Jordan/J. K. Rowling/Terry Brooks will not plan a novel, or even a trilogy, but a trilogy of trilogies. Odin Fallacists love tales of "reluctant" mortals called to heroic or immortal destinies, because Odin Fallacists identify not with mortals, but with heroes and demigods who temporarily reside among mortals.

But why settle for a nine-ology? Why not a dekalogy, in the great tradition of L. Ron Hubbard?

Hell, just raise that exponent to three: a 27-alogy, bitchez!

"This face: people are gonna fucken remember it."
--Randy from Odin

The fallacy takes its name from the band Odin.

03 February 2012

Slappers Of Bass Against Deviltry

Dang, maker of S.O.L.A.D., I only get 17 seconds to read your trailer-warning? What am I, a speed-reader? And can you slow down the editing a little, so I can soak in these fonts?

Not these fonts. I meant the fonts in the video.

And why is this going to be a novel, when it should clearly be a concept album? The 8-bit Mothership will undoubtedly summon the Chosen Ones to their booty duty by means of THE FUNK.

01 February 2012

Ever More Lame.

Most people who talk about Joss Whedon talk about him with love, even reverence. Mention Buffy the Vampire Slayer in most rooms, and someone will begin to praise the show's complex female characters, its witty play with genre conventions, and its progressive depiction of LGBT desire and romance. When you explain that you were talking about the 1992 feature film called Buffy the Vampire Slayer, that praise turns to awkward disavowal.

Fair enough: even good artists produce bad works, and my favorite TV shows have more than their share of embarrassing episodes. However, the things I disliked about the Buffy movie are the same things I dislike about the show: the characters' names, calculated to trip the irony detectors of nine-year-olds; dialogue as mannered as Raymond Chandler's, but dedicated to sneering and pop-culture references; and the self-conscious recycling of the moldiest genre tropes, as if simply drawing attention to them were a writer's highest (and sometimes only) duty.

WHEDON: Look, this [vampire/apewolfman/superhero] is wearing a lampshade! I'm done here!

Some of my dislike depends on my taste in intertextual humor. (I like, for example, David Lynch's homages to cultural trash.) And Whedon is not entirely to blame for his style: Buffy the Vampire Slayer is part of the 1990s slacker shitegeist, where looking as if you were trying to do something grown-up had become uncool. (Consider some of the icons of US culture in the 1990s: Nirvana, college dropouts becoming Internet-boom millionaires, and "Generation X.")

Anyway, my real problem with Whedon is the example he sets. He's one of those artists who succeeds largely by flattering his audience: he throws out an easy cultural reference, and people who sometimes watched television as children or who listened in high-school English catch that reference and feel smarter. Like Spielberg, he's adept enough at cheap methods that he makes his audience love his work, and love themselves.

Is this a lampshade or a witch-hat? I can't tell anymore.

However, Whedon's admirers are not always adept at his methods, and the results...

The Film Script is "Mostly Complete."

Reason #47 to fear the multi-novel epic fantasy: danger lurks in its trope of the everyday person hailed by fortune/history/the Gods/secret birthright/leprosy to become the Chosen One to fulfill a grand and world-shaking density.

This trope appears harmless. Yet throw it into the fire, and secret characters blaze forth:

<Tolkien voice>This trope may inspire a person to plan, and possibly even execute, a multi-media fantasy project, whether or not that person has any business attempting such a project. Under the witchery of this trope, a workaday mortal may come to believe that he or she has been Chosen to create the Next Big Thing in epic fantasy.</Tolkien voice>

This is not to say that I think we should cast all multi-novel epic fantasies into the volcanoes in which they were writ, but caution is in order:

"The stage of Genie: The Beginning is set in the medieval time period where it shy's away from a traditionally strong Arab heritage from which the normal storytelling evolves. The battles are unique and suspenseful."

(That's a relief, about the battles.)

The reward for big donations should be the airbrushing of this image on the donor's vehicle.

According to the creator of the project, "The amount we are seeking is the minimum amount necessary of the approximately $25,000 we intend to invest in hiring a professional book writer to assist in the writing of the book as well as the first round of publishing."

Consider: what is a "professional book writer," after all? If the creator of this project kept the $25,000 and wrote the book himself, would he not become a professional book writer? Cannot $25,000 hail the everyday person, and name him the Next-Big-Thing-Bearer? (This is the stage of the monomyth that Joseph Campbell refers to as "the Call to Rejection Slips.")

Postscript: I suspect that the woman depicted above is the protagonist, Kacie, but I hope her name is Genie.

Funded: The Dying Times, "an original zombie/horror novel/book"

The description of this "novel/book" does not indicate that it is a children's or young-adult novel/book. This may come as a surprise, considering the youth of the protagonist, and despite this comment by an "independent reviewer": " 'Unlike Stephen King or Jack London, Dying Times was easier to follow, and yet at the same time, just as interesting.' "

But whatever. The important thing is that the world is one "original" zombie-apocalypse story richer, and I can read it without laboring to untangle the syntax of a King, or a London's web of allusions. (Seriously, Jack: not everybody reads Greek and Sanskrit, and when you assume that I've read volume 3 of the Divine Comedy, you make an ass out of U and ME.)

Postscript: From the Shitstarter Guide to Survival: When the Shitstarter Hits the Fans, chapter 3, "Bug Out or Bug In?":

"Lots of people have asked us over the years, 'If could have only one font for TEOTWAWKI, what should it be?' That's hard to answer. One option is to find a font that you can train with comfortably, until using it becomes second nature, whether it's Helvetica or one of the serifed typefaces. The problem is that when TSHTF, one of the first things the unprepared run out of is fonts. In the emerging barter economy, you might regret putting all your faith in something elegant, when your neighbor shows up ready to trade a thousand characters of Papyrus or Comic Sans for some flour."

Tempters and the Tempting Tempters Who Tempt Them

I am sometimes tempted to begin in the passive voice, but that temptation is never succumbed to.

I'm not sure which makes me want to fist my wallet more: the clandestine-midnight-sex-chat vibe, or the scratches on the promotional film. Join me, and help this guy afford a new roll of Super 8!

Funded: The Airship Isabella Penny Dreadful Novels

Not funded: the Airship Isabella's dental plan, but maybe that's a gesture toward period verisimilitude.

"Steampunk hearkens back to a time, be it real or fictitional, where people had respect for each other. They cared about how they looked."

Here's a steampunk persona for the taking: Doctor Bourdet-Fauchard, inventor of the coal-fired Pneuma-Dentic Maxillo-Mandibular Armature (worn at conventions by his corseted, Reubenesque assistant).

You're welcome.