Know your Audience

Authors always have to keep their audience in mind. Unfortunately, audiences always change, especially when you target young adults like I do. One thing that really helps me keep my audience in clear focus is reading the yearly Mindset List, published by Beloit College.  So what is this list? As the college puts it:

The Mindset Lists of American History

What started as a witty way of saying to faculty colleagues “watch your references,” has turned into a globally reported and utilized guide to the intelligent if unprepared adolescent consciousness. It is requested by thousands of readers, reprinted in hundreds of print and electronic publications, and used for a wide variety of purposes. It immediately caught the imagination of the public, and in the ensuing years, has drawn responses from around the world. This site now gets more than a million hits a year.

Some from this year’s list that jumped out to me:

9. “Don’t touch that dial!”….what dial?
12. Amazon has never been just a river in South America.
25. Video games have always had ratings.
37. Music has always been available via free downloads.
56. They’ve always wanted to be like Shaq or Kobe: Michael Who?
57. They’ve often broken up with their significant others via texting, Facebook, or MySpace.

Undoubtedly, some of you are saying, “yeah, and?”   Well, one day you’ll understand.

So, which point on the mindset list hit you the hardest?  EDC

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Pit Stop

Saw this funny Star Wars-inspired comic recently… enjoy!

The Argyle Sweater by Scott Hilburn
The Argyle Sweater

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In the front of most every book there is a dedication. Usually, it’s a message of thanks to close family or friends and sometimes to supportive fans. To most readers, this is a page they skip over with just a cursory glance. To those who see their names in print, it means much more. But to the author, I’ll tell you, it means the world.

Being a writer is like running a marathon and backpacking at the same time.  It’s a marathon in that it takes steady work day after day, looking for the finish line while pressing through all sorts of obstacles, both external and internal. It’s like backpacking in that nearly all authors work full time jobs, have the responsibilities of marriage, parenting, home, and community, plus are small business owners with endless tasks in that regard. We’re fully loaded on top of the long trek we walk day in and day out.

And so, when an author makes a dedication, he or she thinks of what life would be like without those key people whose love and support make all the difference and make it all worthwhile. Besides the words we bring to life on the printed page, it’s the biggest gift we can give, to say this work is dedicated to you.

This week, I’m celebrating 15 years of marriage to my beautiful wife, Amy… AND celebrating the 7th birthday of our little miracle child, Emma.  And it’s dedicated all to you! I love you!!!!

Your loving husband and father, EDC

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Revelators Issue One Available for Free Download

For my friends who are comic fans, I’ve got a treat for you… The first of three forthcoming issues of Revelators, co-written by yours truly has been released for free download.  Just check the Stories tab at my website for the link.

Revelators is an end times hero comic series, I’ve had the privilege of helping launch with the talented folks at Vizion Press. It’s got great art by my friend, Paolo Libunao, who also did the incredible cover of my latest novel, Runaway. Also, hats off to the producer and my co-author, Alex Healy, whose had the vision and perseverance to make his dream a reality.

Download, enjoy, and get on the waiting list for issues two and three due later this year!  EDC


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Till Death Do Use Part

Saw this on Buzzfeed recently…  a series of wedding photos interrupted by a zombie attack, lol!  Here are a few below, but please click here to view the whole spec-fic inspired series. You’ll see all the prerequisites for a wedding shoot… tossing the bouquet, a toast, and I guess cutting the cake… sort of.  I guess the moral here is that a strong marriage can survive anything!

If you could get away with it, what kind of crazy wedding photos would you want?


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Lio in Space

I’m an avid comics reader and enjoyed this recent series from Lio by Mark Tatulli.  I thought you might like it too…  EDC

Lio  by Mark TatulliLio




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The Inner Storyteller

Everyone has two inner storytellers.

One storyteller weaves a tale of woe and tragedy, where the hero suffers through adversity and ultimately fails, wishing he had never started his doomed journey. The other storyteller speaks of great adventures with legendary battles fought, perils faced, and obstacles overcome to great glory and victory.

One storyteller endlessly repeats how you can’t do it, how you are destined to fail, how your life is destined to stay this way, that you deserve where you are, and how you might as well not even try. This storyteller’s favorites words are can’t, shouldn’t, won’t, and don’t. It sees failure as inevitable and to be avoided at all costs.

The other storyteller cheers you on, tells you that there is nothing you can’t do if you come up with a smart plan, if you work hard, if you change, adapt, and grow, if you persevere and keep moving forward despite the past. This storyteller sprinkles words like can, should, try, will, and do in every sentence, encouraging you at every step. Failure, to this storyteller, is one of the best ways to learn.

One storyteller’s words are borne of discouragement, the other’s of hope. One crushes dreams while the other dares you to dream bigger. One tears down the sails of your ship, while the other fills your sails with a driving breeze. One finds despair in every moment, while the other find joy in the journey. One echoes of the Accuser, one quotes the Creator.

Everyone has two inner storytellers.  Which one are you listening to?


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EDC Interview at R-Squared Comicz

R-Squared Comicz has posted an interview with me of all people for my writing work for the forthcoming Revelators comic series.

It was a rapid fire interview peppered with questions designed to entrap and discredit me. But with my wit and wisdom, I deftly bested the Mike Wallace wannabe to come out smelling like a rose. It will take more than that to get me you corporate stooges!

Well, it wasn’t quite like that, but there’s a great photo of my beautiful family.  It’s worth it to head over there to get a look at them and leave glowing comments of how photogenic my girls are despite my ugly mug.  ;>) EDC

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The Bloon

It seems like every few days there comes news of another credible effort for commercial spaceflight. Soon the citizen astronaut will have her pick of companies. But this one really stands out to me. Instead of riding a column of fire, Zero2Infinity‘s Bloon, is designed to take you to the edge of space, in slow, gentle, and spacious comfort.

It’s a relatively simple concept. A helium balloon takes you 22 miles high and after a 3-hour visit to near space, it turns into a giant parachute bringing you back to earth in a similarly gentle way. The big plus to me is the length of the experience, which is easily 20 times longer than the rocket rides.  The big con would be missing out on weightlessness, since you would not achieve orbit.  Still, I like the looks of this one.

Check out their website for more info, including a short video.

Would you ride a Bloon?


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Where’s WALL-E

Here’s a good one I saw on Blastr today. In amongst dozens of movie and TV robots, including the Tin Man from The Wizard of Oz for some reason, WALL-E is hidden —  just like in the Where’s Waldo books.  I like how C3PO is chatting up the robot from Metropolis. Can you find WALL-E?  Click the pic below to go to the post and see a full screen version.


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