August writing wrap-up.

all-the-wordsWell, damn. We’re at that point of 2015 where all the months end in “…ber.” How the hell did that happen so fast?

Time flies when you’re…hmm. Yeah, whatever.

August was dominated by a whole lot of pieces being moved around the board as we get set for the final sprint toward 2016. Things will be busy in September and October, for sure, and the rest of the year’s shaping up to be the same way. We shall see.

In the meantime, here’s the August rundown:

Continue reading

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A proposed modification to office meeting policies.i

So, this morning, I’m having a conversation on Facebook with a friend, who drops this bit of “Monday” on me: Apparently, someone in charge at his office called a meeting, and once everyone was present, confessed that he had real idea why the meeting was being held. The “in charge” person basically said, “I have no idea what I’m supposed to be asking here.”

This, of course, prompted reactions from the group that likely were variations of this:

AngryApe

I’ve been in my share of meetings where there seemed to be no defined purpose for the gathering, other than interrupting whatever work we were supposed to be doing. It’s one thing for the rank and file to be clueless when they’re called into a room (keeping your people uninformed being a pillar of modern management, and all), but if you’re the one who’s supposedly got the plan hiding among those flash cards you’re holding close to your vest, you’re expected to drop knowledge on your subordinates every so often.

People who failed at this usually irritated the shit out of me.

Therefore, I propose this modification to office meeting policy:

If you call a meeting, and once everyone is assembled you announce that you don’t see the point of the meeting or – worse – have no idea why the meeting is being called in the first place, you are then required to perform a lip synch rendition of a song from a pre-approved list. Said list is to be compiled and approved by all members of a team or group that participates in the affected meetings.

Barring the existence of such a list, or if an agreement cannot be reached so far as any options from said list, the default selection will be “The Jackal.”

Discuss.

Posted in jokes, ramblings, weird shit, work, youtube | 3 Comments

Your Moment of TrekZen*

In hindsight, burritos were a poor lunch choice.

trek-funny

(* = inspired by the “Your Moment of Zen” segments from The Daily Show)

Posted in jokes, nerdity, trek, TrekZen | 8 Comments

Happy Judgment Day!

Roses are Red
Violets Are Blue
Humanity’s toast
Suck on my big fat CPU.

Love, Skynet.

Celebrating the 18th anniversary of the fall of humanity and the rise of the machines.

Judgment Day: August 29th, 1997. Sunblock optional.

Here’s hoping you can get out and enjoy it!

Posted in nerdity, tributes | 2 Comments

Cover art for Sequart’s trio of upcoming Star Wars essay books!

I think the title pretty much says it all, right?

The Sequart Organization has been keeping friends Rich Handley and Joe Berenato busy of late. In turn, they have been keeping freelance word pushers like myself out of trouble by giving us things to do. You may recall that Mr. B edited an anthology last year, New Life and New Civilizations: Exploring Star Trek Comics, which took a deep dive at–wait for it–Star Trek comics in all their various forms. For reasons surpassing understanding, Joe invited me to contribute an essay to that collection.

Despite my best efforts to show him how he’d made a tragic mistake, Joe along with co-editor Rich called me back not once but twice for two different essays dealing with different aspects of Planet of the Apes. The first of these, The Sacred Scrolls: Comics on the Planet of the Apes, was just published, while a follow-up, Bright Eyes, Ape City: Examining the Planet of the Apes Mythos, is due out next year and will take a look at the entire Apes franchise.

And now, they’ve done called me back. Again.

This time, Rich and Joe really went off the deep end, commissioning not one and not two but three–three, I tell you–new collections of essays all focusing on Star Wars. Hey! As it happens, there’s a new movie coming out later this year, and more in the pipeline, so now seems like the perfect time to do some analyzing and ruminating about various people and things in that galaxy far, far away.

SW1Rich and Joe have assembled–conservatively speaking–six hundred million different writers (I could be off by a few dozen) to contribute essays to the three books. Deciding quite correctly that a little bit of me goes a long way, they’ve contained my pollution of this monstrous undertaking to an essay for the first volume, A Long Time Ago: Exploring the Star Wars Cinematic Universe.

Whereas this first book will be covering Star Wars on multiple fronts, the second and third volumes will be dialing in on specific aspects of the franchise. A Galaxy Far, Far Away: Exploring Star Wars Comics will do just what you think it’s going to do, while A More Civilized Age: Exploring the Star Wars Expanded Universe takes a look at novels, games, comics, and all sorts of other tie-in products that serve to expand and enhance the Star Wars mythos.

SW2-3

So far as I know, publication dates for the three books have not yet been finalized.

Rich is also staying busy on a number of fronts with his own publishing company, Hasslein Books. You can read more about all of that as well as these latest Sequart offerings by moseying on over to the Hasslein Blog:

From Planet of the Apes to Star Wars: New Anthologies Bookin’ Your Way

Many thanks to Rich and Joe for continuing to invite me into the Sequart sandbox. I figure one of you will learn your lesson one of these days.

Or, you know…not.

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Me and Kevin: Talking about your mom at Shore Leave.

Okay, not really, but it made you look.

During the Shore Leave 37 convention held earlier this month in picturesque Hunt Valley, Maryland, Kevin and I were cornered like the vile animals we are invited to sit down with the lovely Janice Sanborn, who was conducting interviews as a field reporter for our good friends over at the G & T Show. Why? Well, as it happened, the rest of the people involved in that show had hot-footed to Vegas for the big Trek convention being held there the same weekend, and because of that, they all missed the chance to hang out with the cool kids.

You know, us.

Therefore, Janice had us all to herself. Awwwwww, yeah.

Dayton-Kevin-ShoreLeave2016 (Photo by Janice Sanborn. Also, one of the few pics of me I don’t loathe.)

The interview includes our secret origin story, tidbits on how we work together and not kill each other, whether our undergarment preferences run to boxers, briefs, or commando, and what we really think of our writing colleagues. We also find time to offer up insights into our individual creative processes, what we’re currently working on and what’s next for the Deleterious Duo. It’s a short, breezy listen, so give it a go:

G&T Show Shore Leave 37 Interviews – Dayton Ward and Kevin Dilmore

Thanks very much to Janice for putting up with our antics. Be sure to listen as Nick Minecci, Terry Lynn Shull, and Mike Medeiros bring you a new episode of the G&T Show every Sunday, right here on your very own internet.

Posted in cons, fandom, interviews, podcasts, q&a, shore leave, trek | 2 Comments

Talking “Armageddon’s Arrow” and Seekers with Visionary Trek!

For reasons surpassing understanding, some people like talking to me. They even like to ask me questions on occasion, and then actually seem interested in my answers.

Go figure.

armageddons-arrow-coverAnd so it is with The Captain’s Table, one of several podcasts produced by Visionary Trek. Hosts Michael Clark and Roslyn Scoular invited me into their realm for a chat about many things Trek, with emphasis on my recent TNG novel Armageddon’s Arrow as well as Star Trek: Seekers and our forthcoming novel for that series, All That’s Left, which is due out later this year. The conversation takes a few other twists and turns, and ended up being a fun discussion.

Well, it was for me, at least. I can’t speak for Michael and Roslyn, but they seemed to tolerate my antics well enough.

It’s been a while since I’d last spoken with Michael, and it was my first time talking with Roslyn. Both hosts made me feel right at home as we got on with talking about a mutually-loved topic. You know, Star Trek, and stuff. The result of that spirited back-n-forth has been edited and polished up and presented as an all-new installment of The Captain’s Table podcast:

The Captain’s Table, Chapter 44 – Dayton Ward Talks Trek

dayton-speaknoevil

Many thanks to Michael and Roslyn for having me on their show. It was fun, and I hope we can do it again some time down the road!

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My 2016 convention schedule is already building out. Yikes.

Why, why, why I’m I thinking about 2016? We’ve still got some 2015 left to get through, right?

Nevertheless, I’m already starting to look at next year through a couple of different prisms. There’s what I might be writing, of course, but also where I might be traveling. 2016 is a big year for Star Trek, as you may have guessed what with the big 50th anniversary hoopla and shenanigans and whatnot. With that in mind, we’re already having conversations about convention appearances, and from the looks of things, my con schedule will be experiencing a definite uptick next year.

booksaleStarting out right here in KC, Kevin and I have already tentatively accepted invitations for appearances at three separate conventions: Planet Comicon in March, the Starfleet Region 12 Summit in April, and the still new-car fresh smelling Kansas City Comic Con next August.

(Note: Each of these is still listed as tentative.)

Then there’s our annual pilgrimage to Denver for Starfest in March, which is pretty much a lock as things currently stand. We’re committed to never missing that particular con so long as they keep letting us in the door. So far, so good. Later in the year, Kevin and I will be heading east to Baltimore and points north for the annual Shore Leave con.

Kevin will almost certainly be heading to San Diego and New York for their respective comic-cons, and it’s looking more and more as though we’ll both be in Vegas for the big 50th Anniversary Trek blowout con. Hell, I’ve already booked a room for that one. It’s also possible that I’ll be at San Diego or New York, as well, though at things stand now that’s extremely tentative.

That’s just what I know about today. Stay tuned for updates. Maybe we’ll see you at one or more of these shin digs?

Posted in cons, fandom, nerdity | 9 Comments

Happy Birthday, Gene.

Today marks what would have been the 94th birthday of Star Trek creator Gene Roddenberry.

“I would hope there are bright young people, growing up all the time, who will bring to [Star Trek] levels and areas that were beyond me, and I don’t feel jealous about that at all.”

– Gene Roddenberry, 1988

Thank you for giving us such a wondrous sandbox in which to play.

Posted in trek, tributes | 1 Comment

Novel Spaces – “Keep Your Eyes On Your Own Prize”

writerWell, I made it exactly one month into the new schedule over at the Novel Spaces blog before missing my new posting date. For those keeping score at home, it was yesterday.

Derp.

Still, I kinda sorta had a decent reason. You see, I was writing a piece for my August contribution, and then somebody on my Facebook feed posted this picture:

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And that made me do a rethink.

Therefore, my contribution this month has to do with that pang of envy we as writers might feel from time to time, when we see another writer–and maybe it’s even someone we know–announce a project or book deal that gets us to thinking if only for a passing moment, “Hey, that’s not fair.”

Wrong. Wrong thinking. Not cool to go down that road. There are better uses of your time, Writer. Turn that energy toward pushing more words.

Novel Spaces – “Keep Your Eyes On Your Own Prize”

Yep, it happens to all of us, but it’s what happens next that really matters.

My Novel Spaces archive.

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