Writer’s beware

There’s an old saying that says, ‘you get what you paid for’. This is more relevant for today’s writers who are trying to make a name for themselves. Many people will offer to help for free or for a fee that’s next to nothing. I say to these upcoming writers, beware, as in the saying, you get what you paid for and when offered something for free generally what you get is nothing.

I’ve been stung by this tactic three times now and you think I’d have learned my lesson by now, ‘fool me once, shame on you, fool me twice shame on me. That doesn’t apply, not fully anyway, you see I’m the type of person that believes if someone says they’ll do something, it doesn’t matter what, they should go along and do the thing, or at least come up with an explanation that stands up under scrutiny. I have never agreed to something I know I can’t do, if I give my word I will do it and I expect others to have the same morality, code, whatever you want to call it.

Any writer who has written a book and is looking for publicity then the best advice I can give is prepare a budget, see how much you can afford and then look for the best in the field who is available. Check out their track record before signing on the dotted line to ensure they can actually deliver on their promises. I’ve wasted far too much time waiting for people who claim they can help all because I didn’t have the budget to seek out professional help. That is probably why my sales figures are not where I would’ve liked them to be despite the 4 to 5 star reviews each of my books have earned.

There you have it, some useful advice to any writer starting out. I hope it comes in handy and if you are a writer just starting out, good luck.

The elephant in the room time paradox

I’ve loved comics since I first learned to read and one of the very first I ever bought was a copy of the Flash back in the early sixties. Ever since I read that story I was hooked on everything DC and then Marvel. I had an impressive collection that my parents made me give away when I reached high school because they said I was too old for that type of comic. If I had kept them I would be quite wealthy now as they were some of the most sought after comics in recent years. That’s not the point of this article though. That, I’ll come to in a bit.

My interest in the super hero genre never left me and is still as strong today as it was back then. Now the whole super hero thing has become a huge money making machine with them branching out into graphic novels, tv shows and huge blockbuster movies. My point is connected to the recent Flash tv series starring Grant Gustin as Barry Allen, the Flash. The entire first season was set up to show how Barry became the Flash. How Doctor Wells particle accelerator blew up spreading dark matter throughout the city thus forming the meta humans and of course, the Flash. Doctor Wells though was actually Eobard Thawne, the Reverse Flash who had travelled back in time to kill Barry’s mother hoping to prevent him becoming the Flash. Complicated I know, but it gets worse. After killing Barry’s mother the Reverse Flash is trapped in his past with only one way to travel back to his time which was to utilise the Flash’s Speed Force. So in trying to prevent Barry becoming the Flash Thawne finds himself becoming the thing that makes the Flash. The final episode in the series sees Barry and Thawne go toe to toe with Thawne getting the upper hand until Eddie Thawne, a distant relative of Eobard’s joins the fight and kills himself thus preventing Eobard from being born.

Now here’s the thing. If Eobard never existed, he would never travel back in time to kill Barry’s mother. Barry’s whole life would have completely changed and so would everyone’s who he knew. The entire timeline that held that story line would have been eradicated similar to when Wolverine travelled back in time to prevent the sentinels taking over the planet and killing all the Xmen in Days of Future Past. When the events in the past altered and took a different path the future timeline never existed. Surely something along those lines should have taken place in the Flash and yet they carried on regardless. They mourned Eddie’s death and Barry’s mum was still dead, even though the man who killed her ceased to exist.

I suppose if they had followed the logic behind the death of Eddie Thawne it would have been a bold move on the series makers part because they would have to reinvent the series from scratch. With Eobard Thawne being erased from existence all the events that took place in the twenty two episodes before this one would have been wiped off the record. For continuities sake I suppose they did what they did and hoped no one would ask the obvious question. Or maybe someone already has and the answer is extremely clever and I just never got to hear about it.

Nevertheless, I’ll still be watching the show as it is one of the best on tv at the moment and I can indulge my geekiness to the fullest.

When losing can actually make you a winner

By now I think everyone, or most everyone has heard of the loss Rowdy Ronda Rousey sustained in her bid to retain her bantamweight MMA title recently against Holly Holm. Rousey was resoundingly knocked out in 59 seconds of the second round by a combination of punches finished off by a left roundhouse kick to the jaw, which put her lights out.

All the media focused on her loss, picking out what she did wrong, what her injuries were, how long she stayed in hospital and what she would do next. Nothing was mentioned about the remarkable young woman who ended a phenomenal winning streak in such a resounding fashion. Where were Holly Holm’s praises, where was her story and why did the focus divert from the winner to the loser?

In America the mantra has always been ‘everyone loves a winner’ or ‘no one remembers who came second’ and my favourite ‘second place is just the first in a long line of losers’ So how does a society who takes this to heart and hammers this into every child growing up, every competitor who takes part in any sporting activity, how does this same society suddenly change and start to applaud the loser. The simple answer is, money. Ronda Rousey is a bankable asset that has been promoted to the hilt. She is a good looking woman who is a kick ass martial artist who sees herself as an actress in action movies. She has money written all over her. She has publicly announced she would like to be considered for the role of Captain Marvel, arguably the most important female role in the pantheon of Marvel characters. Do you think the money making machine that is Hollywood would allow a little thing like losing her title in so dramatic a fashion as this derail this aforementioned machine? Hell no! They carry on as if she won with just a little spin on the fact that she lost.

Now I’m not saying Rousey doesn’t deserve all the attention she’s getting. She has an impressive record in MMA, one that would be hard to duplicate and impossible to ignore but just for a second let’s get the facts right here, just for a minute or two. She lost her title and so I would think that the person who ended that impressive run should at least get a mention or two. So I say well done to Holly Holm. You too are a remarkable woman and I wish you all the success in your future endeavours. You’ve earned your moment in the sun so enjoy it while it lasts.