Nile Self Publishing

Looking through the proofs and author copies, it seems like Amazon does most of their printing in San Bernandino, CA and Monee, IL. That’s where the ‘Made in’ stamps say.

I wish I had some insight into that. Made in the USA is a plus for me. Is the whole book made in the USA? Is the assembly and binding? I can’t imagine they ship it around the world. It would take too long.

Mara is live

It took a week or two, but every day a weight has been lifting slightly from my shoulders. It’s funny how tense I was about that.

Drawing little bits of maps for Elegy, and starting to play around with ideas for another kid’s book. Been kicking a few scenes around between Corwin and Julian. Finals are this week. I’ll be happy when they’re done.

Ivan’s Devil

If you’re looking for something to read:

Check out The Brothers Karamazov. It’s out of copyright, and you can get it free from Project Gutenberg or in nice print version. I think that print version is the one I have.

Specifically, look at Ivan’s Devil. I think about this a lot.

The Brothers Karamazov is generally considered one of the great novels of history, and a fair number of people call it the best novel ever written. I don’t go that far, but it is a magnum opus.

It is distinctly Russian and yet a direct contrast to a lot of Russian mentality. Ivan’s Devil is the ultimate assault on the notion of a powerful, majestic, omnipotent evil. There is a devil, but he’s minor, annoying, and selfish. He’s banal. He’s a little thing that does great harm.

Compare with Moby Dick. In America we have a strong ‘take on the world’ mentality, and it’s often held up as laudable. Yet when Ahab takes on the world, the White Whale, he is destroyed. This is inherently American and yet attacks itself.

The Brothers Karamazov holds up the idea of a powerful adversary and subverts it, refuting the idea as only someone steeped in having that idea could do. I often read that chapter feeling like a voyeur, watching someone look at themselves in a mirror without their knowing. And yet Dostoyevsky wrote for the world. Can one be invited into peeping by the subject?

Apparently yes.

The whole book is worth reading, and it’s earned its place on history’s short list. But that bit, Part 4, bk 11, ch 9, is worth reading by itself.

Thanksgiving 2

Like Sauron revealing himself after Aragorn holds the Palantir, evil has awoken. Christmas music has arrived.

Don’t tell me to calm down; I’m being dramatic.

So Merry Incipient Christmas to everyone, even King Soopers who has terrible shopping carts that lock up before you get to your car. Like the orcs carrying Merry and Pippin, I carried my packages across the plains before I ate them.

I guess I’m an orc in that analogy, but:
A) I’m a cool orc, an Uruk Hai.
B) Let’s be honest, this whole analogy is falling apart and sinking.

Like Númenor.


If an objective third party observed my difficulties at school and rendered judgement, “You do paperwork badly,” I wouldn’t be able to argue. I don’t think that’s the case, but I’m not looking for that fight.

‘Like the school. I hope I filled out all my forms right.


I’m thinking about recording Mara, but she’s a female 1st-person POV narrator. She’s also five. That might be kinda weird.

I was thinking about writing a sequel where Hector is the narrator. The pro is that he would be a male narrator, so obviously me reading might make a little more sense. But I’m, still, a thirty something, so reading as a 5/6 year old is probably way more significant than anything else.

News Comparison

Another good comparison is Bloomberg’s story on Michael Tubbs and the WSJ’s op-ed on the same election.

A few things stand out:

1) They don’t talk about the same events. The Bloomberg article focuses on blogs and blog coverage; the Journal talks about crime and homelessness rates. The Journal doesn’t even discuss the blogs Bloomberg addresses, and the incident rates the WSJ focuses on are a vague aftermention in Bloomberg.

2) Sarah Holder of Bloomberg wrote a much more in-depth article. The Journal editorial staff knocked out a 1 page op-ed.

3) Sarah Holder mentions Lincoln is black and Latino towards the end and leads with a picture of Tubbs. WSJ runs a similar lead and mentions Tubbs became the first black mayor, and youngest Stockton mayor ever, in the second paragraph. WSJ mentions Lincoln’s race and background a few paragraphs later. Those points are closer than in the Bloomberg story, but the article itself is much shorter.

4) I’m not sure if Bloombrg’s Citylab claims to be journalism or opinion. WSJ’s Opinion page is obviously opinion. I read each article as an argument in support of a clear thesis, the thesis largely to be expected from the partisan side associated.

I think this is a clear example that the different sides just don’t see the same world. They’re looking at tangential realities, ‘branes, or elemental planes that only rarely intersect.