Thursday, 1 May 2014


Those who know me personally, will know I am an avid gamer. Not a pro or even that good, but I love it tremendously. And with this opening line, I have to admit I am at a bit of a crossroads…stumped for a decision, and I would value some input from other gamer nerds out there (or just people in general).

My Xbox360 is reaching the end of its lifespan. It makes me sad to say it, for she has served me very well in the four years I have owned her, never once overheating or breaking down. But the reality is, her insides are old. Gaming consoles are just PC’s in fancy boxes, focused on a single or limited set of tasks centred on a game. PC components have a finite lifespan. But unlike regular PC’s, consoles are not upgradeable.

When next-gen consoles were announced last year, my first concern was about the ongoing support for the current 360 and PS3. Surely developers would continue to offer games for the hundreds of millions of people still using these machines, waiting for the new consoles to settle and maybe drop in price a bit. And indeed, maybe companies were quick to re-assure fans that their older machines would not be forgotten.

But almost immediately cracks started to show. DICE, developers of the massive Battlefield 4, stated that it was a game ‘primarily built for PC and next-gen, and current gen would be toned down to allow it to run. Hmmmmmm. So what we got was a set of smaller maps and mediocre graphics to allow the game to run smoothly on the machine. It is almost certain that whenever Battlefield 5 drops, it will not feature on the old-gen at all.

And recently Ubisoft announced an exciting new Assassin’s Creed game set in the French Revolution…but only for next-gen and PC. That was a major upset for me, because AC is without a doubt my favourite franchise in all of gaming. A secondary AC game is being prepared for old-gen, but we all know it won’t be the ‘real’ game, the place where the real story is going. If you want that, you need to upgrade.

At the time of announcement, the AC decision pretty much made my decision for me. If the new game was only for next-gen, then next-gen was where I needed to go. Plain and simple.

But then I started to think about my PC.

Before the Xbox, I was a big PC gamer. I only moved away from it because my PC became old, unable to run the new stuff, and as a student I could not afford to upgrade nearly all the insides. But I used to love running around with the control a mouse gave over the player. It was far more accurate than a console controller.

Ironically, the years of practice on the 360 had made me rather adept at the controller, and useless at the keyboard and mouse thing, as I discovered when I tried my hand at Battlefield online with my laptop. Let’s just say the results were far better on the Xbox. Although…one can connect an Xbox controller to a PC. When I did that, things started to improve. (EDIT: only briefly. One needs to adopt the mouse approach to have any chance against other PC players) and of course, practice will bring the keys and mouse approach back to its best.

So now I have a few choices. And I am genuinely not certain which is best. So I will share them with you. Perhaps you can help.


The easiest transition is to go from old gen to new gen. Years of online and offline play on my 360 has amassed a healthy profile I am rather proud of, and with the ability to simply transfer that profile to the new machine, I can pick up where I left off. Consoles have always had the advantage of being focused on a few simple tasks. This means that (usually) there is less that can go wrong or hinder the gaming experience. It simply starts up, loads the game and runs it perfectly.

Visiting a store to look for a game does not include studying the minimum requirements – as long as the console exists, any game on that platform will work. It’s easy to purchase games on that basis, especially with the healthy market for used titles on consoles. It means I can remain in my comfortable position before the TV and continue to use a controller – which also means I have a moderate amount of auto-aim assistance from the console, and it’s a fair playing field. Everybody has the same hardware and software.

There are, of course, drawbacks. Games are considerably more expensive on consoles, and hold their value longer. Online play is subscription based, normally around R500-R600 a year. There is no option to upgrade any part of the hardware – if it blows, you pretty much have to get a new one. Using a keyboard and mouse is impossible without an expensive, aftermarket attachment that is not really guaranteed to work. And, at the end of the day, a console really does one thing – play games. Focused, but limited and narrow.


The mac daddy for many, the PC presents a whole host of thoughts, both positive and negative. It is, generally, a superior device to a console, able to run all sorts of tasks and applications that consoles just cannot do (like word processing or even audio tracking, which is handy for a musician like me). Investing in a gaming PC offers the user a powerful force of a machine, and it must be said that, generally speaking, games look better on a PC than a console. This is further emphasized by the ability to upgrade her parts on a regular basis, keeping the tower as up to date as possible. Technically, you should still not need to concern yourself with game requirements if you take this approach.

However, upgrading costs money. A console only costs you once (assuming it doesn’t blow up). It is true that there are no subscription costs to play online via PC, but is that saving big enough to cover the upgrades. Depends on how often you upgrade I guess? Also, the games are cheaper, which could also help cover the upgrade costs.

A big PC drawcard for me is backwards compatibility. I have long maintained that is a complete lie and total extortion that new consoles are not backwards compatible (IE, play the previous Xbox games on the new Xbox console). This excuse of ‘it won’t work with the new software is, frankly, rubbish, and we all know it is, and they know we know it is. The fact that Microsoft recently announced work on an ‘app’ to allow Xbox One players to play 360 games is just proof of that. I bet Sony will follow soon. But at the moment, it is only on the PC where your old games can and will still function. That'’ a big bonus if you love some of the older shooters like Unreal or FEAR, or something random like Worms.

But then the elephant in the corner rears its head: data requirements. I have no evidence, but I am led to believe that online gaming for PC is far more data-heavy than online gaming for console. Patches, updates and add-ons for PC are simply bigger, even bigger than next-gen console downloads. Is this true? I have internet, but it is not infinite. Giant patch downloads could pose a problem for me.

The last thought here is that, at the very least, my 'gaming' laptop (there isn't really such a thing but it does run games smoothly for now) can suffice for the time being. I could still play the new Assassin's Creed this year without any new hardware, assuming it will run on low settings.

Sigh. The agony of choice.


I am not hating on the PS4. It’s a beautiful system with excellent performance. But I don’t want one. Plain and simple. Just like some people prefer Audi to BMW. Why? Because they do. Xbox controllers have always felt more comfortable in my hands and their online system is super smooth. If it’s console, I’ll stick to that.

So, as you can see, a conundrum. I am, at the moment, leaning toward the PC. But only just. The potential data requirements scare me. My lack of ability with a mouse infuriates me. But the wide scope of possibility with a PC entices me. Likewise, the familiarity of the Xbox is attractive, but the price of games and online subscriptions is not.


Sunday, 8 December 2013

The problem of consumerism

I have long maintained that there is a major flaw with the modern business model. Nearly all of today's thinking in the workplace revolves around the customer being happy / getting what they want / never feeling even slightly inconvenienced / ect. And in our modern, Western society we have bought into it. Heck, I'm not innocent. I get irritated when I wait longer than I consider acceptable in a queue at KFC or a supermarket. Delays on products shipped from online retailers - I hit the roof. YOU said it would be here by such and such date. WHY is it not here?

This mentality is drilled into us, both as consumers and as a workforce. We believe we must bend over backwards for the client, and the client is starting to believe they must be bent over for (that could be read as very dodgy, haha). All sorts of new business models, like the relatively young beat-the-clock model, the increasing work hours for nearly every all points to us. The consumer. And our insatiable desire for 'needs' to be met immediately.

The problem with this is it causes the entire system to start crumbling. The more consumers get everything they want, they more they want everything when they want it. Faster deadlines. Shorter load times. Quicker service. More results. And eventually every business will hit that point where it can no longer keep up with unrealistic consumer expectations.

But don't dare question that, because as we have all been taught, the customer is king.

It seems to me this mentality starts to permeate everything. When I was in primary school, my parents NEVER even considered contacting any of my teachers directly. These days, many parents are given cellphone numbers for their childrens' class teachers and contact them whenever they want to discuss their child - even 10 at night. And the teacher is expected to obey because 'I paid school fees so I get to do what I want and you must fall in line'. So Little Johnny isn't getting the marks Mommy wants so Mommy calls the teacher because how dare the teacher let that happen. It's ridiculous. But it happens so much now. Parents expect to 'buy' their kids' education like they're buying a car service or a can of coffee. It doesn't work that way. Only your kid can earn that education. Teachers cannot force it.

And the ironic thing is we only make ourselves worse off. We increase our own workloads through our consumer demands for more and more. Because the more we expect from businesses, the more they have to do. Which means people have to work longer.

Those people are us.

A few months ago Capitec Bank ran an ad campaign on the radio where they 'interviewed' some random person and asked: 'one bank stays open Sundays, the other doesn't. Who would you bank with?' The brainless sheep on the other side of the mic says 'the one that's open on Sundays of course. I shop on Sundays. Why can't I bank on Sundays too?'

Because, dumbass, somebody needs to work on Sunday to make that happen. And you can be sure they aren't employing new staff for one extra day. Reverse the roles. Ask the bank worker the same question. He would hate it because he is forced to work extra. And this scenerio will become more and more prevalent in society, if we continue the way we continue (in my opinion). This sense of entitlement that rages inside so many people - it drives them to copy intellectual property like music and movies without paying (because why should I pay if the TV network paid right? as if that's the same thing), expect bottles of champagne and red carpets with slaves carrying fruit baskets every time they buy a new car, and demand banks stay open Sundays because a) they are too lazy to give up their lunch one day of the week or b) they are already in a work situation that prevents them from having time to do so. Circle.

It's no secret I play plenty of video games. I love them. But I wouldn't call myself a hardcore gamer. Hardcore gamers take it very seriously. Bad scores are met with rage and flying controllers (generalisation) and hours and invested into practice. I admire that.

I also like to watch the gaming community, because they are a very passionate people. Offend them, mislead them, or don't give them what they expect, and you will unleash a storm of hate and malice not seen since the Dark Ages.

So about a month ago a little game called Battlefield 4 was released. Massively anticipated, huge hype, great trailer footage. Only, it wasn't ready. There were still enormous glitches in the game system, like the save function not working AT ALL. But you know what? They shipped it anyway. Broken and all. Because they said November 1st and don't you dare not deliver on the date. The customer is king. (Some people will argue they shipped it to get the Christmas sales. Rubbish. That game would sell no matter when it was released. They shipped it because if they delayed it they would have been massacred by the community.)

And what do you think happened? You think all those gamers focused on the good and said: "Oh well, it might not save but 80% of the game is amazing and very well thought out'? HELL NO. They let loose. In a big way. Because they paid and ect ect ect ect...

I worry about where this will take us. Western society is fed by the idea that we can have whatever we want, whenever we want it. And the truth is it cannot last. Eventually we will topple our own system by asking too much of it. And then what?

Rant over.

Monday, 25 November 2013

The madness of term 4

Forgive my tardiness.

School exams are no excuse for poor BLOG-keeping, but it did suck up my entire brain. And during the times when it did not, there weren't even gigs to take my mind off it. Thankfully there was the Xbox, and the arrival of Assassin's Creed 4, to swallow the little time I had left after schoolwork did its damage.

The fact I had last been here so long ago was a nagging irritation - not an irritation to write, but an irritation with putting it off...and then putting it off some more. This week finally sees the downward descent of our routine as school is almost over. It was a rough term.

But I am excited. There is plenty planned for this holiday season to keep me busy, creative and entertained.

I've got some gigs with my band, K, Ray and The Bird, lined up. We have been working a little less this year - perhaps saving our energy for the tour we had in July, and recovering since. December, however, will see us play at least 4 shows - not exactly record-breaking but plenty of opportunity to flex our music muscles. Check us out on Facebook or for more info on those gigs. There's a festival in there, a carol service, a fun jam with our friends The Brother's's gonna be a great holiday season for us.

I'm also going to be travelling to my good friends Mali and Cuan Korsten over the new year to make some music with them. It's always fun to jam it up with those guys, and launch into Battlefield 3 with Cuan when we have downtime :-)

Of course I must not forget I have a wedding to arrange. Gosh, it's so much work.

I am planning to post some updates from the gigs - photos, happenings, and so forth. If I do not stick with my word, I pledge to punch myself in the face. Repeatedly.

And I will also submit some more reviews soon. Just gotta write them...

Right, there we go. That felt more like an update than a post, but at least you know I'm still alive. I'll be back.

Sunday, 22 September 2013

Album Review: Dream Theater

For those of you who don’t know, Dream Theater is a behemoth in the progressive metal world. Seen by many as the forerunner in the entire genre, Dream Theater carries the added advantage of sporting a line-up of musicians all recognized as geniuses of their craft. Which means you can forget about 4-chord progressions in a major key with a catchy jingle; musically, things are gonna get pretty intense. So one can only imagine the pressure placed (by fans) on this group to produce an album worthy of their super status.

Before we look ahead, let’s go back. Dream Theater last dropped an album in 2011, A Dramatic Turn of Events. It was their first album without drummer/long-standing member Mike Portnoy, who was also a heavy hand in the arrangements and production of their previous work. And I gotta say, his absence showed. ADTOE, while by no means a bad album, was underwhelming. It had some fantastic moments, but as an entire album, it just felt below par. And the production also seemed to suffer a bit. I had become used to the energy and (for lack of better word) loudness of the previous albums. ADTOE seemed subdued, especially the drums (recorded by the legendary Mike Mangini after the songs had been written). It all seemed a little less than I expected, and I was concerned that, without Portnoy, they were incapable of writing and producing an album as strong as their previous work.

So with the arrival of a new, self-titled album, I was keenly interested to see what exactly was what. Were my fears to be confirmed?

Well, from the start the band certainly means business. The intro, False Awakening Suite, is made of the sort of stuff you hear in movies when giant armies march into battle. That is followed by The Enemy Inside, a powerhouse song that blasts out of your speakers, before the band tastes some arena rock with The Looking Glass. And to the delight of fans, the instrumental track returns in the form of Enigma Machine, which is essentially a vehicle for the musicians to show their chops. Believe me, I’m not complaining. They haven’t earned their reputations for nothing, and it is sometimes staggering what these guys can do.

Things barely let up after that. The Bigger Picture, the first ‘ballad’ of the album, still has plenty of power, and a guitar solo that proves John Petrucci is not only capable of speed, but also finesse and melody. Behind the Veil has an early Metallica flavour to it. Surrender to Reason and Along for the Ride are both strong in their own right. I love how nothing on this album feels like filler, placed there simply to stretch a track listing. Each song has its own character, and its own style. My words here really cannot do justice to the diversity within each song. You really need to hear it to appreciate it.

And of course, as seems customary since 2005’s Octavarium album, Dream Theater end with an epic composition clocking in at twenty-two minutes. Titled Illumination Theory, it is everything Dream Theater stuffed into one enormous song. Crunching guitar, moving orchestral score, emotive vocals, huge bass and drums…this one song has everything. Is it their best epic song ever? Tough call. Octavarium set a very high standard. But it certainly comes close, and perhaps even matches it.

I also like the production. The songs are guitar-heavy, often driven by a crunching riff, and so the guitar sits high in the mix. I like the effect this gives. The album feels like the heaviest work the band has ever recorded. And few things get my head bobbing as easily as a punchy guitar riff. Drummer Mike Mangini has a thicker, more ‘old-school’ sound to his kit, which lends a slightly 80’s flavour to the album. Thankfully no 80’s cheese came along. The drums, definitely louder than ADTOE, sit very nicely in the mix, driving the songs with enough energy to match the ferocity of the guitar riffs. It all feels far more complete and full through my speakers.

There’s so much more that can be said about this album. Jordan Rudess, the mastermind behind the keys and orchestral score, is superb. He complements John Petrucci's guitar with subtle precision, and when he takes centre stage, as in the middle segment of Illumination Theory, it is properly epic, and enough to stir emotion even in metalheads. John Myung, the silent bassist in the background, is nicely audible in the mix and faultless. And James Labrie, the vocalist I often joke of as having the hardest job in rock to keep up with his band mates, sounds better than ever. He really does.

But as I said earlier, my words cannot do real justice to the entire album. There’s simply too much diversity, too much change, to sum it all up on paper. I have yet to find another band able to piece together ferocious guitar riffs, shifting time signatures and sweeping orchestral movements so cleanly and effectively, and make it all sound like it flows. This album is perhaps the best example of that. As a complete package, its best thing they’ve done since Scenes from a Memory in 1999. Praise doesn’t get much higher.

RATING: 9/10

The Enemy Inside
Enigma Machine
Illumination Theory

Thursday, 29 August 2013

Don't judge a snare by it's colour

I like snare drums. They give me a certain artsy pleasure. Something about the design, construction, finish, and massive scale of variety makes me a sucker for them. I love how one drum can be so individual to the drummer that plays it; how the material used to build the drum, as well as the heads on the drum, and the tuning of both heads, and the snare wires below, all affect the end result when you hit it.

Sometimes my fiancĂ© gets a little irritated with my snare fetish. Why do I need another one? Isn’t 7 enough? I understand that, to an extent. But we are no different to other musicians, who all want plenty of options to choose from. The only downside for us drummers is we cannot pack our sounds all into one foot pedal and carry it in a backpack.

Guitarists have effects pedals. Drummers have snare drums. And cymbals. And blocks. And double pedals. And lots of sticks. And many drum keys. Because we keep losing them.

My snares (left to right): Gretsch Catalina Club, Ludwig Supraphonic, Pearl Joey Jordison, Gretsch Catalina Maple, Pearl Virgil Donati, Remo Masteredge, Sonor Phonic

One of the things I like to do is buy and sell drums very now and again. Not like a business (although that would be fun too) but just for myself. So while I have my primary Gretsch drumkit – a thing of great beauty, I cherish her immensely – my second kit often changes. I like to sell off whatever the second kit is every few months and look for something new. It gives me an easy opportunity to try many different kits. (Recently that has also become a problem – something I will address next week). And I like to do the same with snares, although the selling part rarely happens. I just keep buying J

One of the snares I have been using is a unique little beast. The Pearl Joey Jordison ‘Power Piccollo’ snare. Joey is the drummer for the metal band Slipknot. Indeed. The drum looks the part.

I bought the drum on a whim. It is professional quality, and was on sale on Gumtree super cheap. And I had a student whom I knew would buy it from me for at least what I would pay for it, should I not like the drum’s sound. So I figured, why not? It probably won’t work, being a ‘metal music’ snare drum, so I’ll just check it out for a week and sell it on for a small profit afterward.

That was a year ago. I have yet again found parting with the drum close to impossible.

First off, look at her. She’s a beauty, no doubt about that. Ignore the fact that those are Slipknot logos on the side and you have a matt black snare with a cool tribal painting on the side.

Second, she is beautifully constructed. I have long maintained that, pound for pound, Pearl Drumworks are the best overall drum company working today, across all budget levels and quality inspections. This drum lives up to that reputation of being seemingly unbreakable.

Third, she is LOUD. And for a drummer like me, who is not a hard hitter, a potent snare drum is a welcome addition.

But here’s the big thing. The character of this drum – the ‘metal music’ persona it seems to carry – is a complete misrepresentation of her real qualities. Beneath the goth black and Slipknot logos, this drum is massively diverse and capable. I have tried it at medium tunings and high tunings, with single and double-ply heads, using sticks, rods and brushes. In every scenario – with the correct tuning for that scenario – the drum delivered.

And it delivered well. In watching footage from one of my gigs, and seeing/hearing the drum in action, I really got to witness that diversity. She was powerful but sensitive, and surprisingly warm for a drum made of steel. It just sounded…right. And that was an acoustic, folk-rock band.

I took it to that first gig thinking ‘this will look cool and be fun to knock around before I sell it next week’. But within minutes I was completely won over. I genuinely thought it would be a one-trick pony. And it isn’t. And now I love her.

Yet another snare drum I never want to sell. Even though I am once again eyeing another one…

Also, as promised, my first Youtube video is online. Go check it out at

Sunday, 25 August 2013

It's time to be pro-active

Recently I have felt my practice routine stagnating.

That's a lie. Because I don't have a practice routine. I mostly st down behind my electric kit and fart about on my iPod, playing through the same playlist that makes me feel awesome about my drumming.

But that needs to change. I am seriously feeling a loss of momentum in my playing, and I need to do something about it. A few things, in fact. I'm here to discuss one.

Before we get there, my options:

1: Practice routine. Goodness gracious, it's nothing short of disgusting that I, as a teacher do not have a regular practice routine comprised of technicals, practicals, songs, reviewing past gigs for weak points. Probably because I don;t play enough gigs. I want more gigs..! I partly blame it on my attempt to play too many instruments very well, at the same time. At the moment I have a drumkit, guitar, bass, banjo, and trumpet sitting in my room. And I try to make time for them all. Can you spell N-E-R-D?

2. Fresh faces: I love my band K, Ray and The Bird. They are awesome people who make me laugh and I cherish them and the strange music we write. But rock music has always pumped through my blood, and I desperately need to find an outlet for my rock angst. If you know of anybody looking for a drummer, I am into most forms of rock, provided there are guitar riffs (not just chords) and the vocals are actually vocals, not pointless screaming. And don't worry K, Ray homies; I'm not leaving. But we all know you won't be adding any electric guitar riffs anytime soon.

3. Educational content: An idea I have had for a long time is to upload educational material to Youtube. Being a teacher, I can honestly say I have seen some definite subjects that need addressing, as well as songs/bands that fellow musicians struggle to interpret. I've held back mainly because it's not easy/cheap to properly record an audio track for a drumkit and catch that content on video. But you know what? It's never gonna be. And I have an electric kit, which I can line straight into Pro Tools and get crystal clear audio. And iPhones record great visual. Maybe I can experiment with recording audio from my Roland, playing the same track on my acoustic kit, and overdubbing the sound...hmmmm

Anyway, the point is this: I am going to pledge right here. Because when you pledge on the internet, there's no turning back. Within the next month I will have uploaded some form of educational material to Youtube. I am not yet sure exactly what, but it will come to me. Maybe a song cover with some explanation, maybe a specific subject dissected...we'll see.

If you are a muso and you would like some topic or other covered, please comment, or email me or something, and ask. I would be only too happy to oblige (assuming I can play it) :-)

Sunday, 18 August 2013

Self-publishing - easy, yet a little bit difficult

A little know fact about me is I have written 3 books.

A fantasy trilogy. I started the first one in high school (grade 10) as part of an English project. We had to write the opening paragraph and climax paragraph (because the entire climax of a story takes place in one paragraph right?) so I figured I might as well just keep writing. At that time I was reading heavily (I was a real nerd/dork in high school, reading, playing PC games, music instruments...I had no idea if a girl ever flirted with me because I had no clue how to read it. I just smiled back and agreed. Maybe I was secretly a big playa without even knowing it. One of my school friends told me I was.)

Over the past 10 years I completed the first book, rewrote it, wrote a second, rewrote both, then wrote a third, and finally made substantial changes to all three. And now we are here. Three books of blood, guts, spit and ass, with some romance and comedy thrown in.

Over the years I have given various versions of these books to trusted friends to read and assess. My only demand was that they assess it VERY in brutal honestly. If it was total donkey twoddle I wanted to know. But the feedback was generally very good, and I was highly encouraged to get them published, which involves getting them edited, proof-read, ect.

I'll skip past the part of the story that involves me approaching mainstream publishers. Suffice it to say it was a waste. All of them have very, very strict requirements before they will even think about farting in the direction of a manuscript, and most of them are completely uninterested in the fantasy genre. Particularly in South Africa, where most publishers want non fiction or 'historically-based' fiction around a 'South African' story - in other words, a story from Apartheid, a man in a township, something like that.

So I had the option to approach overseas publishers (same strict requirements) or self-publish. I went for the latter. I figured, if I self-publish I have control, I have the say, I have all the power of decision-making.

And people always say self-publishing is easy. And it is, to an extent. The tools are all available online these days, and you can get a book ready for E-readers or physical printing at no cost other than your internet cap. The problem is, to really make it shine, you still need some green. And depending on how far you go, that can add up pretty fast.

After some online tampering: my beauties

For example, getting it set up for free excludes any editing. And unless you have a friend who does editing for a living and has no problem sorting it out for you, you pretty much have your own untrained eyes to do the work. And here's the truth: they are untrustworthy as hell. Trust me; you can stare at your work on a PC screen for hours, and still miss plenty. If you are gonna do it yourself, at least print it and do it on paper, with a highlighter in your hand or something. I also had some great friends who took the time to sift through my books and identify errors with post-it's, emails and word documents. Awesome. But after all that there's still some that snuck through. And editing ain't cheap. Once off, for sure, but still a fair amount.

What about cover design? I took the easier option; I bought online images, thus acquiring the rights to use the image (don't be illegal about it - just now your book takes off and you have a lawsuit on your hands. Can happen...), and they became my covers. But if you want a tailor-made cover, you're talking lots of bucks. Any quote I looked at was over R1000 per book, per design.

And marketing? The only way your book will sell is through excellent marketing. And that's the biggest expense of all, depending on how you do it. Word-of-mouth won't do anything for people on another continent.

Most self-publishing websites offer all these services and more, so if you are interested go and check one out and see what they can cost. You'd be surprised how quickly it can add up. At the end of the day, a professional product is still a professional product, and they don't come cheap. Ever.

So where am I?

Well, the first book is active online - I.E. for sale at the link below and on the iBookstore. It isn't perfect yet, but dammit, by now surely most of the errors are eliminated. The rest give it character, I keep telling myself.

I haven't really marketed the book, because I am still investigating editing options. I probably should just do it, but with a wedding around the corner (in wedding terms 7 months is around the damn corner) I have other things to save for. I am actually happy with the covers, but it might still be a better option to get ones designed. And for physical printing, the shipping costs from America are killing. I am still sourcing a local printing press to print my manuscripts.

What I did in the meantime, with the advice of a friend, is upload a portion of my book to a website called Wattpad, where you can share literature for free. I am hoping to gauge some sort of response based on that portion of the book, and hopefully encourage some folk to make their way to the digital store on Lulu or the iBookstore to purchase the entire story. And the feedback will be awesome. By that I mean getting feedback will be awesome. Not the feedback content will be awesome. Although it might be, but that's conceited...anyway...

At some point, when I decide I have done all I can for that first manuscript, I will officially launch it, backed with some proper marketing and all that jazz. Big announcements, party, opening specials, that sort of thing. And then parts 2 and 3 will need to follow soon after. In the meantime I just keep writing other stuff. I never got into writing to make money; it was always a fun thing to do. And it always will be. If the stories hit a note with other people and they want to support, awesome. If not, I doubt I'll just stop. Art, in any form, should be done for oneself, not for others.

And on that philosophical note, I bid you farewell.

Want to read some of my book for free? Go here:

My online store on