Down with typos!

CNN has an article up on their site right now that I can wholeheartedly agree with. And, might I say, it’s something I’ve been saying for a long time. You can read the article HERE.

As a person who values the English language, it tears me up when I see people treating it as though it didn’t matter. It does, people. It’s how we communicate, share ideas, express ourselves. And, when it comes to the written word, I think we should be especially vigilant in not only how we use it, but how well we use it. I know people think these days that because our lives are rushing by us at a hundred miles per hour we should let the occasional typo slip by unremarked upon, but what happens when one becomes two, and two become twenty? What then? How far down the slope are we willing to slide before the written word no longer has meaning? How long will it be until texting becomes the norm, and lengthy prose is shortened to an unintelligible (unless you’re still a teenager) string of abbreviations? There is a wall, folks, a wall between us and barbarism, and proper language usage is one of the bricks in that wall. Let it break, and soon after all the rest will crumble too. Don’t let our language go gently in that goodnight, my friends. Be vigilant, be vocal, be corrective. Help me stomp out the tyranny of the typo once and for all.

Thank you…

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Happy Birthday, George

Hello, all. Justin here. If someone were to ask me who my creative heroes were, who inspired me and made me want to be a storyteller myself, I could rattle off a laundry list of names for them. People like Robert Heinlein, Joss Whedon, Stephen King, Gene Roddenberry, and Bill Willingham would all feature very highly on that list. Each one of them has impacted me creatively, sometimes personally. But, there is one person above all others who shaped me and helped make me who I am today, and that person is George Lucas.

Yeah, yeah, I know. Everybody hates the guy now. Once upon a time he was the god all geeks worshiped, but after the prequels (and really, I think starting with “Return of the Jedi”) his star fell from the cultural firmament, and he became a bit of a joke. Now most people say his name with scorn, if not outright hatred. You won’t get that from me, though. No sir. All you’ll get from me is love and appreciation for the man.

You see, I will never forget that it was George Lucas’ original “Star Wars” that first hit my young brain and woke it up to the possibility of myth and story. I remember watching the movie as a child, marveling at the space battles, the sword fights, the music, the emotion, the drama. I remember the fear I felt at seeing Vader walk into that smokey spaceship corridor, the elation at Luke’s swing over that chasm, the childlike affection for Princess Leia. I was five years old when “Star Wars” came out, and I was never the same afterward.

And then came “The Empire Strikes Back,” which took everything I loved about “Star Wars” and rose them to new heights. I wasn’t as big a fan of “Return of the Jedi,” but I still appreciated the story Lucas was telling, and watching Anakin redeem himself was the perfect end to the trilogy. But the train didn’t stop there. After that came an endless procession of comic books, video games, and novels. The Star Wars universe had no end to it, and I found myself exhilarating in so much of it. Whether it was the “Knights of the Old Republic” games, or the Thrawn trilogy, or the “Dark Empire” comics, there was always something new for my creative spirit to hold close and draw strength from, and none of that would have been possible if it weren’t for what Lucas created. Say whatever you like about how he handled the prequel trilogy, none of that takes away from the fact that the man created an entertainment empire (pardon the pun) that has thrilled and excited hundreds of millions of people for over thirty years. Not many people can make that same claim. He is the wellspring from which all this started. I owe him more than I can ever say. I am who I am — for better or worse — because once upon a time George Lucas wrote the words, “A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away…”

Happy Birthday, George. I hope you have many more to come.

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DRS Special Episode – P.G. Holyfield Is All Grows Up

This week Ryan, Terry, and Justin sit down to discuss the upcoming release of P.G. Holyfield’s novel “Murder at Avedon Hill” published through Dragon Moon Press. The Amazon rush is happening 05/15 at 12PM EST. Be there with us!

PG will also be on Podioracket this Thursday (05/13) at 9PM EST.

This link to Amazon is live, but please wait to make your purchase until Saturday, May 15th at noon eastern, to help get those sales numbers as high as we can with the Amazon Rush!

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Podioracket.com Interview

Hey, everyone! Justin here! Last night I was part of an interview by Podioracket.com about “Podthology.” It was a more free form discussion than the Page Readers interview, and goes for nearly an hour. I hope you enjoy it!

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Justin is interviewed on the Page Readers podcast

Hey, everyone, it’s your kind and benevolent host, Justin. Today I was interviewed on the Page Readers podcast because of my involvement in the upcoming Dragon Moon Press anthology entitled “Podthology – The Pod Complex.” My short story “Pirates of the Crimson Sands” is one of the many fine stories included in the anthology, and being able to go on another pocast to talk about it was fun. I’m just one of several people included in this episode. I hope you enjoy it!

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Happy Birthday, Mr. P.G. Holyfield!

I hope everyone welcomes me in wishing PG Holyfield a happy birthday, and a successful year as a writer and podcaster. He’s more than earned it. Have a beer on me, buddy.

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“War Fish” – An Audio Adventure by Terry Mixon

* File Download *

Hey all, Terry here. I mentioned in the show that I’ve been working on an audio production of a short story and here it is. War Fish is a science fiction story that was inspired by the submarine service in WWII. I hope you enjoy the story.

Please send me feedback letting me know what you think. My email address is terry@eknifeshop.com

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The Ties That Bind – Tales of the Breaking Dawn NOW ON SALE!

Well, I’ve finally gotten everything put together, and now my short story collection, “The Ties That Bind – Tales of the Breaking Dawn” is now available for purchase. Right now I have it in the following formats:

Printed Chapbook

CD – this is a little different from the audio version I podcasted

Kindle

Soon I’ll also have a free PDF up on my site for download (the story is on my site in its entirety, as are several of my other short stories), and an iPhone/iTouch version is in the works as we speak. Now, some of you might have read parts #1 – #3 of this story in the previous three issues of Ray Gun Revival (#4 will hit in the next issue), so you might be wondering what makes the printed version special (other than the amazing cover art created by my brother), or you might have listened to the free podcast version and now wonder what the CD has that’s so special? Well, first, the chapbook and Kindle versions of the story have an essay at the end that tells how the story came to be, from its small beginnings to what it is now. The CD has brand new opening and closing credits, and there is a final track that contains hilarious bloopers and outtakes from the voice recording sessions. I hope those spark your interest.

And listen, don’t just take MY word for it. Here are just a few of the kind words that have been said about the story…

“Hard-hitting space opera in the golden age tradition, relentless and full of dark action.”
— David J Williams, author of The Burning Skies

“Whether regaling us with tales of anti-gravity pirate ships sailing an ocean of sand, or putting us aboard a cargo runner racing through coven gates and deep space perils, Justin Macumber delivers one hell of a fun story. What more can any reader ask?”
— J.F. Lewis, internationally published author of ReVamped (Void City, Book Two)

“The Ties That Bind is some of the best sci-fi I’ve read all year and the crew of the Breaking Dawn will have you rooting for their success on every page. Exciting, smart and well written, this is a story that is seriously worth reading.”
— Jeremy Robinson, author of Pulse and Antarktos Rising

Anyway, I’m really proud of what I’ve put together here, and I hope some of you decide to check it out. This story won Honorable Mention in last year’s Writers of the Future contest, and this year it was in Ray Gun Revival, so I couldn’t be more happy with what it’s done for me.

Thank you for reading this. And, if you buy a copy, thank you especially for that.

Oh, and by the way, if you want to see a higher rez version of the front and back cover, click HERE.

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Tales of the Breaking Dawn: The Ties That Bind – Part 4

TTTB

* Download File *

Hello all, Justin here. We’ve made it! It’s taken longer than I thought it would, but now you can listen to the fourth and final part of my four-part series “Tales of the Breaking Dawn: The Ties That Bind,” a science fiction story about the star-freighter Breaking Dawn and its crew. I hope you’ve enjoyed the story thus far, and that you’lll find the ending satisfying. Please send me feedback letting me know what you think. My email address is justin@justinmacumber.com

Here is the cast list:

Justin Macumber – Narrator
Kimi Alexandre – Captain Jessica Quimbly
Terry Mixon – Boo
PG Holyfield – Cam
Ryan E Stevenson – Ferron
John Mierau – Duka
Keith RA DeCandido – Yinushan Captain
Amanda Cales – Traxal Captain
Jonathan Schiefer – Tol Defense Command
Mur Lafferty – Tolesian Captain
Nathan Lowell – Gorawnie Caller

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Tales of the Breaking Dawn: The Ties That Bind – Part 3

TTTB

* Direct Download *

Hey, everyone, Justin here. Well, we’re nearly to the end. Here is Part Three of my four-part series “Tales of the Breaking Dawn: The Ties That Bind,” a science fiction story about the star-freighter Breaking Dawn and its crew. I hope you enjoyed Parts One and Two, and that you’lll be back for the exciting finale. Please send me feedback letting me know what you think. My email address is justin@justinmacumber.com

Here is the cast list:

Justin Macumber – Narrator
Kimi Alexandre – Captain Jessica Quimbly
Terry Mixon – Boo
PG Holyfield – Cam
Ryan E Stevenson – Ferron
John Mierau – Duka
Matthew Wayne Selznick – Coven Gatekeeper

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