Tuesday, March 31, 2020

Narrative Warfare: It Really Is A Magician's Trick

This is what you are witnessing play out in real time on the world stage.

What does a magician do? They perform illusions by seizing your attention, directing it where they want it to go, while they perform the sleight-of-hand required to execute the illusion. They make you focus on the form and not the function. Thus seemingly miraculous feats are performed before your unbelieving eyes. This same mindset is behind all confidence artists and other fraudsters; magicians just use it for the honest end of entertainment rather than theft.

What is going on right now is one of the largest illusions ever pulled.

No, the pandemic is real and it is as bad as is feared. The illusion here is the appearance of passivity by Trump. What you're not paying attention to is the following:

  • Trump has the emergency power to direct all spending as he sees fit. This is how he got the Wall going; he will do it again as he sees fit regardless of what Congress says.
  • Trump is using A/B testing constantly, leaning hard on the actual Federal structure to legitimize this, and thus using Push/Pull salesmanship to get governors and mayors to do the actual heavy lifting of addressing the pandemic in their territories. This simultaneously exposes the crooks beyond the Fake News' ability to contain, and gets the good ones the attention they deserve.
  • The stimulus package also puts the Federal Reserve under the Treasury, making Trump succeed where Ron Paul failed: he's ending the Fed. Not in style, but in substance; it is no longer an independent central bank, but instead under the control of the Federal Government. Long-time observers, both Deep State and enemies thereof, acknowledge this. What they have not said is that this will result in a global financial restructuring because the Fed is a lynchpin in the system; through its seizure, Trump can and will seize the International Monetary Fund, the Bank of International Settlements, and so on. The system of usury is about to end.
  • The Deep State actors will not be perpwalked until it's too late for anyone to do anything about it. Instead, Trump will focus upon turning Deep State actors; this maintains the illusion of normalcy, while accomplishing the substance of drainage.

In short, folks dissatisfied about Trump are not looking at the effects. They are focus on the seeming and not the substance. We have a man in the White House who doesn't care about how it looks. He only cares about what it does; he'll make it pretty after the fact. Metokur, Red Ice, and so on are all failing to observe the effects; it doesn't matter how the target goes down, so long as he does, and what I see emerging is a preference for hollowing out from within than boring out from without.

Which means he's hollowing out the Deep State and wearing it as a skinsuit- he's using their playbook against them AND WINNING. That's brilliance in action, and it has to be the most supreme humiliation to be subjected to a superior execution of your own methodology, down to the humiliation of having to pretend that he didn't do it to you. No wonder they're increasingly insane to the point of bad optics.

Remember this going forward: pay no attention to the trappings, and focus instead on the effects. It doesn't matter what you call it if the effect is what you want.

Monday, March 30, 2020

Narrative Warfare: The Truth of Your Currency Breaks Containment At Last

In 2014, the Bank of England explained how your currency--wherever you are--is actually created. The article--"Money Creation in the Modern Economy"--is here if you want to read it in its entirety.

One common misconception is that banks act simply as intermediaries, lending out the deposits that savers place with them. In this view deposits are typically ‘created’ by the saving decisions of households, and banks then ‘lend out’ those existing deposits to borrowers, for example to companies looking to finance investment or individuals wanting to purchase houses.... Another common misconception is that the central bank determines the quantity of loans and deposits in the economy by controlling the quantity of central bank money — the so-called ‘money multiplier’ approach....

Lending creates deposits — broad money determination at the aggregate level

As explained in ‘Money in the modern economy: an introduction’, broad money is a measure of the total amount of money held by households and companies in the economy.

Broad money is made up of bank deposits — which are essentially IOUs from commercial banks to households and companies — and currency — mostly IOUs from the central bank. Of the two types of broad money, bank deposits make up the vast majority — 97% of the amount currently in circulation. And in the modern economy, those bank deposits are mostly created by commercial banks themselves.

Commercial banks create money, in the form of bank deposits, by making new loans. When a bank makes a loan, for example to someone taking out a mortgage to buy a house, it does not typically do so by giving them thousands of pounds worth of banknotes. Instead, it credits their bank account with a bank deposit of the size of the mortgage. At that moment, new money is created. For this reason, some economists have referred to bank deposits as ‘fountain pen money’, created at the stroke of bankers’ pens when they approve loans.

Just as taking out a new loan creates money, the repayment of bank loans destroys money. For example, suppose a consumer has spent money in the supermarket throughout the month by using a credit card. Each purchase made using the credit card will have increased the outstanding loans on the consumer’s balance sheet and the deposits on the supermarket’s balance sheet. If the consumer were then to pay their credit car bill in full at the end of the month, its bank would reduce the amount of deposits in the consumer’s account by the value of the credit card bill, thus destroying all of the newly created money.

Banks making loans and consumers repaying them are the most significant ways in which bank deposits are created and destroyed in the modern economy.

TL/DR: "Money" is debt. It's loaned into existence at interest by banks. Those banks never have the money on hand to cover all deposits, hence "fractional reserve", and therefore they have nothing of tangible value to consider (to lose) when making a loan contract. This makes ALL loans fraud because the "money" (currency; it has no inherent value, unlike gold or silver, which is what separates money from currency) literally does not exist until you agree to the loan; they literally make it up on the spot when they create the loan and then sucker you via interest into paying them more than you owe for the privilege.

Thanks to the God-Emperor, and his uncanny ability to get his enemies to reveal themselves Looney Tunes style in their attempts to destroy him, this is now reaching popular awareness. Bill Still and his cohort of dissidents are finally getting their day and their due for revealing this years ago.

And now the God-Emperor has control of the Federal Reserve, and through it the entire international central banking system. Ron Paul, once he runs the numbers, could not be happier- and neither is the ghost of Andrew Jackson, the man who destroyed the last major central bank in the U.S.

Sunday, March 29, 2020

Narrative Warfare: Internet Archive Did Nothing Wrong

Today in "This is why OldPub deserves what it's getting", we see Mary Robinette Kowel and Chuck Wendig falsely call the Internet Archive a "pirate site".

Yes, that Internet Archive. The one recognized under law (thanks California) as a library.

What prompted this stupidity? This.

Go ahead, click through. Read the salty fuckwits crying about Muh Copyrights like they know what they're talking about. Yeah, even self-important organizations got in on this, ignoring that procedures exist if something is included in error.

Really, you OldPub faggots are embarrassing, and I cannot wait for this to blow up in your faces. You're shitting on a library and archive doing its mission, defaming it falsely as a pirate site. Eat a bag a dicks, all of you, and die in nuclear fire. The Internet Archive did nothing wrong.

Saturday, March 28, 2020

My Life As A Writer: Book Two WIP Excerpt 1

This I wrote for Book Two. WIP and all that.

Oslo at twilight, no matter the time of year, always held Vikuun Qis' attention. It did yet again one night months after the space pirate Red Eyes tried and failed to steal away his cousin Gabriela Robin at New Edinburgh. After the victory ceremonies, after the funerals with full honors, after the accounting of those slain and the materiel lost, came the questions and with it the whispers. Count Robin cut him off, but he didn't care; the Dukes, Archdukes, and Grand Dukes still held him favor for now. So he stood in his chambers at the family house in Oslo, looking out the window, as his assistant in Rome called.

His assistant appeared on his desk as a holographic miniature.

"My lord, the day's business is concluded."

Qis didn't look away from the sunset. "Are there any problems or other developments outside expectations?"

"Only this, my lord. Count Robin has departed from Second Salisbury late in the night during a blackout. He did not take the family yacht, or take an escort, but rather boarded one of the couriers to Earth."

"I see. And no one has seen my cousin since her return to her father?"

"There are no credible reports, my lord."

"Send the full report to me by the usual channels with full encryption immediately, and be ready for orders before breakfast. Dismissed."

"Very good, my lord. Sleep well, my lord."

The assistant's hologram disappeared, and as the last light of day faded over the horizon Qis looked into the window and saw the reflection of a painting behind him, a painting of an empty throne atop a tower, below which gathered an uncountable sea of pleading faces and outstretched hands.

"Soon that error will be rectified."

Qis turned away from the window and went to his closet instead, stepping inside and closing the door. Racks of clothes and accessories for every ocassion surrounded him, and a center island allowed him to lay them down, but he did not do so. Instead, he reached underneath and flipped a switch. The island's top opened to reveal a hidden chamber. Inside was a belt, a full mask like those of ancient Greek theater, and a beam sword all in the style of ancient Babylon.

"Count Vikuun Qis cannot address this change of events, but Master Nimrod can."

There will be more to come.

Friday, March 27, 2020

My Life As A Gamer: Why Your RPG Is Crap

Most tabletop RPG designers are incompetent. They are incompetent because they do not understand the medium that they work within, but instead operate off of a Cargo Cult mis-comprehension of Dungeons & Dragons and are reacting entirely against the Straw Man they've built up in their minds over time. The proof of this comes when they see things like Jeffro Johnson's Twitter threads spelling out what Gary Gygax put down and what this means when put into practice.

The reactions to that post, and posts by others such as Agent Dutch (usually under #EliteGaming and #WinAtRPGs), betray that this Cargo Cult comprehension is the consensus- however wrong it is. It is not difficult to see how and why there is so much frustration within the tabletop RPG hobby when the folks who are its leaders are incompetent because they don't comprehend what they're working with. It's no different than putting people who don't comprehend how cars work in charge of automobile manufacturing or advising on transportation policy.

(Yes, I know that this is indeed the case. That's why such enterprises and policies are so routinely dysfunctional; the wrong people are the shot-callers.)

What am I getting at here? The error is to assume that Dungeons & Dragons, with its very specific mode of play, is generally applicable.

It is not. Gary & Dave's contemporaries understood this, as they made their own branches from the same wargaming roots that they did. It is no surprise, therefore, that most of the enduring tabletop RPG properties are from that same era. They created their own very specific modes of play and rightly sold them as separate and distinct game products, and it is these games that expanded the medium in any significant way. It wasn't until the 1980s that this comprehension faded.

The reason is that the designers don't think of their designs in terms of whole machines in operation; they don't think like engineers (or, like Gary, actuaries) where what you put on paper has to actually operate in real life by real people. It's no surprise that successful tabletop RPG designs can be summarized as "Wargames with maximized reliance upon liminality" because that's what they are.

Yes, even those seeking to recreate storytelling tropes as a core element of gameplay. Swap "Board" for "War" and the formula still applies. Why? Because "game" is the most important part of "role-playing game", the noun to which the rest are adjectives, and if the performance of play in and of itself is not appealing then nothing else matters. Designers make crap games because they don't focus on the loop that operates the game's mechanics; the process of play is not satisfying in and of itself, and the biggest tell of a crap game is in an unclear gameplay loop.

In the constraint of an elevator pitch or a high-concept summary, can you explain the whole gameplay loop for your game? No? Refine your design until you can. Then you've got a mediocre game, not a crap one, and we can build out from there to something competent.

And that, by the way, is now emerging as a clear and hard constraint for successful RPG design: it has to be a High Concept approach. Again, it's no surprise that all of the enduring TRPG properties can be summarized as "You are adventurers in a (insert fantastic environment here)".

This has to come first. The liminality comes in after this; you can't have boundaries and thresholds if there are no defined spaces to demarcate territories, and therefore to give boundaries the necessary conditions to exist at all. (And yes, the irony that the most enduring gameplay paradigms all work off in-setting borderlands or liminal spaces has not escaped my notice.) The process of refining the role of liminality in your design is what turns mediocre designs into brilliant ones; the process of properly writing your rules down as a technical manual is what takes any game from obscure to accessible- and accessible games are very easy to turn into wildly popular ones.

There are other considerations to address, but those deal in other aspects of RPG-as-business and not the design of the game itself, better left to another post.

Thursday, March 26, 2020

My Life As A Historian: More Aces In Exile

It's time to do the follow-up for Aces In Exile, the story of the RAF pilots not of the United Kingdom.

These are the stories that make history fascinating and, when told properly, entertaining to mass audiences and it is criminal that there is not more done to do just that. It is through the preservation of these experiences of hard times prior that makes it possible for future generations to find their grit when hard times come for them.

Wednesday, March 25, 2020

The Business: The Fragility In Corporate Media Is Real

Diamond, the distributor with a monopoly on American comics distribution (and handling boardgame and tabletop RPG, etc. stuff also), has ceased taken product. This includes DC and Marvel. The American comic shop scene, already on fire, just had gasoline poured on it.

I cannot care less.

The collapse being spoken of in the above video is a part of the larger collapse of the Western entertainment business, which is a rotten zombie corpse now experience a failure cascade as its putrescence reaches critical mass and body parts start falling off. What those bemoaning the collapse don't understand is that the ghettoization of American comics via comic shops has the same effect that killing the Pulps did in ghettoizing science fiction: it allowed ideologues to seize control and turn it into its current form, albeit in a process done in steps over time.

And that, naturally, has meant that the shops themselves became reflecting of what's sold in them over time. Don't tell me that it's not; I've been there and seen with my own eyes, so I won't have folks gainsaying me on this. Just as American comics generally have ceased to justify their existence, so has the infrastructure erected to sell them. Burn it all to ash and replace it with something that actually satisfies the audience and regenerates the culture again.

No, I won't miss the comic shops. They ceased to be fit for purpose a long time ago; it's only now that the inertia has finally worn down enough to bring it all to a stop.

That's not all I won't miss. First one of the Big 5 is in its death throws, now this, and maybe the movie theater business collapses also.

Tuesday, March 24, 2020

My Life In Fandom: New Hathaway's Flash Trailer

The new trailer for Mobile Suit Gundam: Hathaway's Flash is here.

Once more, our friends across the Pacific come through with something to look forward to since the pop culture industries of the Globohomo-dominated West are collapsing. No, this isn't a happy story with a happy ending, but the Universal Century rarely is anything but bittersweet at best and often outright tragic, so at least this is on-brand.

And it looks like we've got a good production team on this trilogy of films, so we're looking forward to another good entry into the franchise like Origin, Unicorn, and Thunderbolt have been. (Not that impressed with Narrative so far.) Part of that is due to this being based on a light novel with a strong following in its own right, and it builds on the appearance of these characters and this narrative in Super Robot Wars V (where things turn out much better, and we need that Hathaway becomes a potent pilot with a potent Gundam in his own right).

Don't blow it, Sunrise and Bandai. You've been doing good overall as of late with Gundam with all this 40th Anniversary stuff. If this meets expectations, you'll have earned your bonuses at the end of the year. Also, looking forward to all the tie-in Gunpla for this movie's release, and I wouldn't mind an English release of the novel either.

Monday, March 23, 2020

My Life As A Writer: Brian Niemeier Interviewed On The Monastery w/ Mildra The Monk

Friend of the Retreat (and my editor) Brian Niemeier appeared on The Monestary today with Mildra the Monk.

This ain't a short episode you can listen to over your coffee or lunch break. This is one you put on when you're on a long commute where you can listen with your attention focused on it instead of whatever repetitive task you're on.

This episode gets into the blatant historical revisionism of Science Fiction as a genre away from its roots in the Pulps, starting with John Campbell's ghettoization of the genre out of popular acceptance and visibility with his "Big Men With Screwdrivers" version of Muh Literary Realisms that killed the Romance of Scientific Romance (which is what Science Fiction really is).

There's also a good segment spent on Mecha, both as in the entertainment business and in the genre itself and its variations. Super vs. Real, Spikey vs. Stompy, design paradigms in both meta and in-setting approaches, etc. are all addressed. Great value right there. Brian's specific approach to how he's handling Combat Frame XSeed is quite the insight.

Sunday, March 22, 2020

The Business: Indiegogo Campaign Delayed

I am postponing the Indiegogo campaign for Books Two & Three of Star Knight. Discretionary spending is going to take a hit, and that includes crowdfunding novels. I'm hoping to launch in May, but we'll see in a few weeks how that's likely to go. I'll make a call in the latter half of April--about this time a month from now--if we're a go or not.

In the meantime I'll continue work on Books Two and Three, and I'm going to see if I can go ahead with a few related things I'm wanting to do and have that available as Spring turns to Summer.

In the meantime, I encourage all of you do make and share your fan art, etc.

Saturday, March 21, 2020

Narrative Warfare: Corona-chan Changed The World

Following up yesterday's free anthology release, Geek Gab's talking about it (and more) today.

A couple of things that I want to tease out from this episode:

  1. Marvel could not push their SJW bullshit if they didn't have Diamond's monopoly power to wield as a club. Without that monopoly distribution position to force stores to take the shit along with the stuff they want, these books wouldn't get green-lit. Break Diamond, and you'll break the Death Cult's hold on the Big Two.
  2. New Disney CEO Bob Chapek should do to Marvel what he did to the Disney themeparks: slash the budgets to the bone. Shutter the comics publishing division, declare One New Day and everything forward as That Never Happened, only keep the back-catalog available in digital and only the top titles thereof in print. All the SJWs get binned and blackballed, and cannot use Marvel time henceforth on their resumes.
  3. Adventurer, Conqueror, King really is the D&D that fulfilled the promise Gary and Dave put forth all those decades ago.

In addition, one more insight, this from Oliver Campbell: this crisis is making people reveal who they really are. While most of the Usual Suspects are doing as they do, the big reveal are whom among Conversative Inc. is really a Mammon Member and who is a true and proper nationalist. No surprise therefore that a lot of them are showing their allegiance to Satan via that aforementioned cult with they ranting about the economy in religious terms. Economics are the means--the tool--and not the end; if the tool turns against the user, then the tool gets destroyed and replaced.

One thing is now inevitable: the Globohomo world we had at the beginning is already dead. It is now time to prepare to build a new nationalist order, a traditional revival, to take its place.

Friday, March 20, 2020

Signal Boost: Corona-chan: Spreading The Love

Friend of the Retreat David Stewart organized a timely anthology of original fiction to tide you over while you wait out your lockdowns and quarantines.

Corona-Chan: Spreading the Love is here to rescue you from the existential horror of indoor life, by offering you a glimpse into other worlds of wonder, whimsy, and warped humor.

Tales of high adventure, escapist fantasies, and thrilling stories of suspense await within, from some of the keenest and most rebellious minds in pulp fiction, with a foreword by the infamous Daddy Warpig.

With 200,000 words of exciting fiction, most never before published, including two full books and two full novellas, Corona-Chan is serious about spreading the disease LOVE!

Read it today!

Click on the image to take you to the book page. Available in EPUB or MOBI, depending on your e-reader preference.

Thursday, March 19, 2020

My Life As A Writer: When To Rewrite Your Series

Craig at #20Booksto50K interviews author Martha Carr on rewriting a series.

It's not surprising that the conditions are commercial in nature. The first is to re-launch a series that wasn't performing to expectations. The second is because you screwed up what genre niche your series went into, and now you're relaunching where it belongs in the marketplace. In both respects taking the time to clean up a manuscript that doesn't work as intended, or could benefit from what you know now that you didn't then, is not a bad idea.

Also, some insights into making use of Kindle Unlimited are sprinkled here and there. Worth a listen, fellow authors.

Wednesday, March 18, 2020

My Life As A Writer: Talking Plot By Someone Who Makes Bank Doing It

This one's for all you guys that need it.

Craig's one of the #20BooksTo50K folks who's making that 50K, so I suggest you give him your attention.

No, no additional commentary from me. Craig's got this. Watch/Listen, and take notes.

Tuesday, March 17, 2020

Narrative Warfare: The Death Cult Doesn't Relent, So Neither Can You

Cernovich made an error the other night. He called for a Culture War cease fire until Corona-chan's dealt with.

The sentiment is not without merit. Mike's a good guy. Mike's coming at this sincerely. The error is that he expect the enemy to relent. They will not. They are the Death Cult, and Corona-chan is a blessing to them despite all the damage being done to Globohomo. The SJWs are not ceasing to cancel and thought-police wherever they have clout, and they are ruthlessly enforcing their Narrative Warfare pushes despite Corona-chan threatening to crash it all. Why? Because the Death Cult operates on the Moral Level of warfare, and that level doesn't DO good-faith measures like this.

Instead, you get them following fellow travelers Rahm Emanueal and Saul Alinksy, for whom crisis is nothing more than the opportunity to ram through measures that otherwise would be difficult or impossible to pass. The mayor of college town (and thus Death Cult center) Champaign, IL has done just this, as Brian Niemeier notes on his blog today. The Cult doesn't regard Cernovich as human, let alone as someone they can respect, so the very idea of relenting in the face of Corona-chan causing chaos is unthinkable. Far more likely is that some galaxy brain is trying figure out how to execute a gay op on him, his wife, and their children using Corona-chan to pull it off.

There is no relaxing against someone who regards your existence an abhorrent offense worthy of summary execution, and that's the Death Cult. Daleks and Skynet are more merciful; if they could, they would cancel Mike from life right now with full approval of their conscience. David Stewart gets into this when interviewed by Thinking Critical recently.

Just listen to the narratives they spread about him. That's all you need to know about how bad an idea it is to relax. They don't relent. Neither can you.

Monday, March 16, 2020

The Business: Using The Opportunity To Improve Yourself

Diseases don't give a shit about economics or social dynamics. They care only about their own processes; if they were humans, they's be narcissists like Boomers or Millenials and go "Fuck you, got mine" at every opportunity.

But you don't have to be that way. Now is the time--since many providers are lifting data caps--to use your time at home to learn useful shit like Cooking (esp. for you Millenials). If you eat out a lot, or eat premade a lot, you're wasting shit-tons of money that could be going to your bills instead; spend one day a week cooking your meals for the week ahead and take your lunch to work instead; reheat your prepared meals for dinner when you get home.

You can do similar searches for other things. (Though for "How to Sell", you may need to specify some more and watch out for scammers; you'd be surprised how many there are out there.) Learn new skills, fill in gaps in your knowledge, and of course you have a nigh-inexhaustable amount of free entertainment available. (The channels covering the entirely fictional SCP Foundation alone will have you entertained for days.)

And if you liked those videos, then without leaving YouTube you can look up how to make videos on YouTube. Same thing applies to podcasts, audiobooks, writing, drawing, and any other form of content creation. And if you think famous people have a leg up on you, think again; celebrities who make their own videos do no better without all those techs and other experts doing their thing so you're on an even playing field.

Don't just sit there bingewatching all the things. You've got Internet access. Use it to make yourself more anti-fragile, and hereafter events like this will not bother you so much.

Sunday, March 15, 2020

The Business: Why Authors Fear Business Practices

The Business of Writing put out a short video on why authors fear business practices. Just watch it; maybe you know this, likely not.

Let me put out the obvious: Because authors view writing as Art, and Art is not Business in most minds.

This is why the writer panels at cons across the globe talk so much about disabusing people of that very notion, despite the fact that most professionals aren't that good at it anyway, especially OldPub veterans. They know it's work, but they don't really accept that it's business; they see it as a job, not as a business, so they act like employees and not business owners. The real success stories are those that DO accept this and act accordingly. (Hello, Larry!)

As for the tool, I'll play with it and see if it delivers. Try it and see for yourself.

Saturday, March 14, 2020

My Life In Fandom: Mollison On Geek Gab Today!

Daddy Warpig and Dorrinal are back today with Jon Mollison to talk about Jon's books and other stuff.

For those of you coming in late, Geek Gab is a podcast a lot of you are sleeping on. You should have it in your feed, or subscribe to their channel (with Notifications on), or whatever it is you prefer. Episodes like this are typical when they have a guest, as you often get little peaks behind the scenes of a given business or process that you don't get on shows like Inside The Actor's Studio (RIP James Lipton).

You can find Neon Harvest at Amazon below.

Friday, March 13, 2020

The Business: Using Gaming As A Value-Add For Your Merch

The other day, The Business of Writing released a video about making collectables for your IP. Today it's about making a tie-in game. The two go hand-in hand, as you can (and should) use the game to add value to your merchandise offerings. Yes, the miniatures and model kits needs to be as high-quality as you can manage so they're attractive on their own, but if you can provide a quality game to play using those things then you've got synergy working for you.

Be it a wargame, a role-playing game, or a boardgame (or even a videogame counterpart, which you should offer as soon as you can make that feasible) there is no reason for leaving money on the table if you're looking to turn your writing into a reliable income stream and offering a tie-in game is the capstone to this value-add business plan.

Thursday, March 12, 2020

My Life As A Historian: Real Horrors Don't Compete With Fiction

New Sabaton History. Enjoy.

Did you notice the apocalyptic landscape this campaign created? Did you notice the absolute terror of death-by-drowning in the soldiers? Sound familiar? It should.

Now you see where Tolkien--who was a young man fighting in the war--got the Dead Marshes in particular, and Mordor more generally, from. The Marshes look just like that blasted wasteland in the Sabaton video, and the faces of the dead are those drowned soldiers.

That combat veteran status also comes to strengthen him elsewhere, as when he depicts warfare he doesn't flinch from giving it the gravitas required even if he shunned putting attention on needless gore and reveling in violence. He shows the stress of combat, and the struggles of command, because he was there and witnessed it--experienced it--first-hand.

The real horror of life makes fictional ones pale, even the most cosmic of them, and this is one of the most horrific in Western and world history. Don't discount history.

Wednesday, March 11, 2020

The Business: Making Collectibles For Your IP

Continuing the "Make Your Merch" angle from a previous post, here's a new Business of Writing video all about making collectables for your IPs.

For folks, like me, who write Space Opera of varying flavors (especially the Mil-SF types), missing out on being able to sell physical objects--figures, model kits, etc.--representative of your IPs popular characters and their respective panoplies is leaving money on the table. Formerly an exclusive domain of OldPub IPs and their counterparts in film/TV, changes in manufacturing and fulfillment make it possible now for smaller players to do the same.

This development is good for those who want to not only offer the widgets, but also offer something to do with them, which is the subject of another video premiering in a few days on making tie-in games.

Tuesday, March 10, 2020

Narrative Warfare: YouTube Is An Abusive Drunk Wine Aunt

Mister Metokur is having YouTube problems again.

This is the second time YouTube has done this. The previous incident had Metokur doing regular shitposting streams and videos mocking YouTube's management and exposing the claims as being blatant and incompetent bullshit until they cut him the check paying what they owed. Expect this to happen again.

Is this due to incompetent staff? Yes. Is this deliberate hostile action? Yes. How? By deliberately and willfully giving incompetent partisan hacks jobs doing non-partisan moderation and legal compliance work, deliberately and willfully giving incompetent and vague direction, and deliberately and willfully dragging out the procedure for fixing the fuckups until it has to be done or Legal gets involved.

The goal is to keep screwing with a user until they either give up due to competing pressures forcing attention elsewhere, or the user crossing some line they can point to when interrogated by others and say "See, he violated the Terms of Service! That's why we shut him down permanently." It's all about those Queen Bee mindgames that abusive bitches use to play the passive-aggressive game of controlling the narrative surround their relationship.

It's the most basic bitch form of Narrative Warfare. It's the behavior of Gamma Males and bitchy women, and good on Metokur for being better at it than them, but ultimately the fix requires something more direct.

Sunday, March 8, 2020

Narrative Warfare: Cuteness Is A Weapon

This video premiered last night. It should get all the Usual Suspects doing the point-and-shiriek.

Nothing here should surprise you. Neoteny and feminine behavior combine to create a very compelling force of attraction, and the women of Japan are well aware of this fact; they are hardly stupid and use this to their benefit, and this is a pillar in their resistance--resistance, not immunity--to SJW Death Cult bullshit we in the West deal with. In turn they have their own issues to deal with that we in the West do not; it's not all Pocky and riceballs over there.

Nonetheless, by showing such a brick-to-face example of the principle, we can now reliably look at (a) who is most vulnerable to SJW infection and (b) spread reliable tells of early signs thereof so concerned parties can intervene before it gets out of control. Many of the patterns previously noticed regarding female Wokeness are born out once seen in this light, confirming what Manosphere mentors taught years before in a data-driven context.

And yes, BPS also uses neoteny to his own benefit by having Haruna do the talking; he knows that this information, coming out of a cute lady, will be more likely to be heeded than would otherwise by the case and it gives the Wold Scold Waugh something to REEEE about. (i.e. bait, so much bait, all the bait, Bait For The Bait God, etc.) This video needs to go viral, and retards like ResetEra need to REEE about it. Brilliant move, oh Ebony One.

Saturday, March 7, 2020

The Business: Authors, Merch, & The Future Thereof

It's no surprise that merchandise is a significant revenue source for entertainment properties. Most authors aren't savvy enough to see that they can play that game also, which is why the few who do tend to be seen as Black Swans, but the smart and successful in NewPub don't agree. Merch is a business decision like any other, and that means you can get the data and work out what to offer, when, and how. This is why I follow The Business of Writing.

Some of this should be familiar by now:

  • Crowdfunding a merch product is an option.
  • From the perspective of an author, offerings in other media are merch (e.g. games).
  • The easiest, and therefore earliest, merch offerings remain art prints and related stuff (shirts, hats, etc.).
  • The easiest things for you to do depends upon your skillset and network. (e.g. games for a gamer-author)
  • Crowdfunding your merch product works with aggressive shilling due to the pitch being "Please help" vs. "Buy now."
  • Sales strategies vary by what you're offering and where.
  • For the love of God, learn how to sell.

A lot of what's talked about here supposes that you've got operational capital on hand to make full use of the advice; I'm not there, so I have to adapt accordingly, which means emphasizing elements that don't require me to shell out what I don't have. (No, no Facebook/Twitter/etc. ads out of me anytime soon.) Instead I have to favor options that don't cost me a penny (such as posting here daily and linking everywhere I can; no, Facebook doesn't allow me to link to this blog at all). You'll have to adapt in a similar manner to emphasize your strengths and avoid weaknesses until you can begin to exploit the full array of options out there.

Friday, March 6, 2020

Narrative Warfare: Chokepoint Control Demonstrated

A while back, friend of the Retreat Rawle Nyanzi pointed out that SJWs in the West can successfully attack anime and manga. Now we're seeing it become obvious what the go-to approach to this attack is: choking the translation/license strategic point, where SJW translator teams willfully act in bad faith to insert SJW meme-disease elements into the licensed translations while de facto monopolizing officially-licensed works via turning the Big Brands of the business into a cartel under their control.

The corporate infection follows the usual SJW playbook--dominate HR, use that to get more fellow-travelers into position, converge ASAP while purging WrongThinkers (this, by the by, is how and why Vic Mignogna got targetted; he's an open Christian and thus a WrongThinker). However, due to the long presence of piracy and fan translation in Western anime and manga fandom, facilitated by Anglophone (et. al.) outlets not under Western SJW control (e.g. the Southeast Asia corridor to release Super Robot Wars mainline games to the West). Imports are expensive, but the SJWs get denied their cut as well as their gatekeeping power, and to date there's been nothing more than shaming and local bans of such merchandise sales.

Until now.

Given the point-and-shriek swarming attacks done on other targets, this was inevitable. Amazon is vulnerable due to having SJWs in junior positions who are amenable to SJW swarm attacks, and one can likely assume that Ebay and other Western-controlled outlets will feel the swarm in the days to follow once Amazon's seen to bend the knee. As usual, the SJWs in the media will reliably inform you that this is the play by making a big deal out of it once such swarming gets sufficient momentum to amplify in their outlets.

Which will mean, if this goes on, that they'll go after Playasia and other importers in due course. But in the meantime, remember that SJWs dominate the fan con circuit and as such you can expect more and more conventions to ban or restrict such merchandise as well as put more programming and policy in place to shame people out of buying and using it in favor of whatever they offer (if they offer anything at all).

They'll go after the importers, starting at the Dealer's Room and small-timer level (as we see in the video) online and working up from there, to constrict commerce in IPs they don't control until they can cut it off entirely. (Remember that Millenials are starting to take junior government positions, so this will involve more censorship calls soon.) The narrative beats will be refinements of what you see here, using their media control to do so over time.

Then they'll go after the pirate sites, starting with the porn-focused ones. Here the goal isn't so much a shut-down as a cut-off; it's sufficient if they can force the site to not allow connections from IP addresses in countries they're in. Couple this with attacks, aiming at bans that are felonies to violate (and, I remind you, felony convictions have a whole host of other lasting or permanent restrictions on you) on encryption and VPN usage and you will find a viable threat to access to alternatives to their offerings forming- one that Boomers will back as it's a scheme that also supports Boomer Media Establishments.

About that.

The point of the game here is to control the points of access between Japan and the West, in terms of business. If the SJWs are serious about pursuing this method to control anime and manga in the West, making alternatives to their pozzed translations and related offerings either impossible or too dangerous to acquire (and make no joke about it, all it takes is ONE savvy SJW to organize the rest) via the power of state sanction is how they'll do it in the short to medium term while they work long-term to poz Japan's culture to their meme-disease.

Fortunately, SJWs don't human very well, and it is that incompetence that gives us hope that we can help prevent over there what's already a crisis here.

Thursday, March 5, 2020

Narrative Warfare: Nurgle Is Wholly Fictional, Right?

Stuff like this makes you think we don't merely have incompetents inadvertently serving the Death Cult. This is straight up Nurgle-worship.

There is no good reason for the city government of Seattle, or the county government wherein Seattle rests, or the state of Washington to not immediately step in and shut this--and all other events--down. Corona-chan has already killed several elderly long-term care patients, and therefore has likely spread to the staff serving them by now as well as their families. Seattle is, like it or not, a Hot Zone; future case reporting will make this obvious before this month is over. Competent, responsible government serves the public interest and that interest demands the shut-down of luxury movements- and Emerald City Comic Con qualifies.

The lawyers and judges that recover from this will be busy with the liability suits to come from decisions like this, all of which is foresable and preventable.

Someone's benefiting from pushing this "It's just a flu, bro!" narrative. Exactly whom, not generally whom, is likely going to answer why Western responses--not just American--are so damned incompetent compared to how even the ChiComs are handling it.

Wednesday, March 4, 2020

Narrative Warfare: The Frame Is Set For The Dems' Defeat

Last night, the Democrat Party in the United States finished culling most of its Presidential candidates. Almost all of those now out of the race turned around to endorse the man who represented the Establishment Wing of the party- the one currently in power via the Democratic National Committee. That man is Joe Biden. Razorfist has words about this.

Within the party, the speed by which this result came about is facinating. Between last night and the Tuesday before we saw the field massive contract as candidates everyone knew couldn't win finally folded. (The sole exception is Tulsi Gabbard; she's going out soon.) It happened over the past weekend, when the media presumed most wouldn't be watching, and this morning we have a de facto presumptive nominee.

The problem is this: we have a clear struggle within the party for control. The Establishment Wing, realizing internally that Trump can't be beat, is focused on what's called "down-ballot" races (i.e. the rest of the ballot), as what's going on for the Presidency tends to significantly influence the rest. They see a threat in the coalition focused now behind Sanders, which includes the Justice Democrats and other Death Cult fronts more willing to kill everything than the Establishment Wing.

This is exactly the sort of thing Razor's video--and the quote of Ayn Rand--is on about. The reason for this is because one wing and its coalition have a good thing going, and the out-groups are getting sick of not getting their way so they'll gladly shiv them and wreck the party instead of getting back in line. The God-Emperor knows this. His people know it. They are going to capitalize upon it, and use that fracture to win.

And once he shows, via his rallies, just how hostile and alien these groups are you can bet support--political will--for more stringent Civ-Nat policies of immigration and border security and so on will surge. If, as intended, he can flip the House and hold the Senate then 2021-2022 will see a flurry of such bills sail through Congress while he finished getting that critical mass in the Judiciary and purges the bureaucracy.

Remember the game is about Narrative Warfare, and that means setting and holding the frame--playing the Frame Game--and this contest is going to let Trump do that in a way the Dems cannot withstand without media control (hence all the censorship and so on), which will not help in the long run as this too plays into Trump's hands. This is why I'm not concerned, not even with this medical pandemic going about, and instead I'm looking for a truly desperate Hail Mary play out of Trump's enemies instead. Expect more wind-up toys to do mass shootings and similar strangely-timed media stunts going forward.

Tuesday, March 3, 2020

My Life As A Gamer: Autarch's "Ascendant" On Kickstarter

Autarch, the folks behind one of the best D&D retroclones--Adventurer, Conqueror, King--have a campaign going at Kickstarter for their new original Superhero game, Ascendent.

And now a quote:

Comic book RPGs tend to be sub-divided into “descriptor-based” and “effect-based” games. “Bolt of Fire” is a descriptor, while “Ranged Attack that 50 points of damage to one target” is an effect. A descriptor-based game prioritizes the descriptor over the effects. An effect-based prioritizes the effects over the descriptor.

Ascendant strives to be neither a descriptor-based nor effect-based game. It is, rather, a physics-based game. The game mechanics are intended to be the physics engine of the game world. Powers have both descriptors and effects. Some effects are precluded by the logic of the descriptor, and some descriptors inevitably entail certain effects. The mechanics are elaborate and detailed (as in an effect-based game) but they are also broad and universalized (as in a descriptor-based game). Players are expected and encouraged to use their powers in whatever manner makes sense within the physics of a comic-book world, but not in ways that don’t make sense.

If a descriptor-based system aims to let players experience a comic-book story; and an effect-based system aims to let players play a superhero game; our physics-based system aims to let players simulate a comic book world. To do so, we have created logarithmic chart-based universal mechanics, a style of design that has not been widely used in the last two decades, but which will be instantly familiar to fans of the classic FASERIP and MEGS RPGs from the 1980s.

And if you want more, click through to the campaign page. Autarch is Good People. They put out good stuff. This game deserves a shot.

Monday, March 2, 2020

My Life As A Writer: 30 Day Warning

This is your heads-up warning.

On this day next month, my next Star Knight crowdfunding campaign kicks off. It will be over at Indiegogo again. I'm saying so now so that those of you looking to back will have put aside some funds to do so.

Perk List will have the following (updated from this post) w/ all prices in US Dollars:

  • Ebook (will give you Reavers also if you don't have it): $5
  • Paperback & Ebook: $25
  • Signed Paperback & Ebook: $35
  • Build-a-Mech (4 slots): $200
  • Build-a-Ship (4 slots): $200
  • Be in a Book (2 slots): $200
  • Get Killed in a Book (2 slots) $500

I'll get the campaign page up in a few weeks, and by then I'll see about adding a few more Perks to the offerings.

Sunday, March 1, 2020

My Life As A Gamer: The Origins of the Clans (BattleTech)

Following up yesterday's post is what you see below. This premiered yesterday, is over two hours long, and is only Part 1 of a series, but damn if it isn't great stuff.

If this doesn't have you wanting to dig deep into this game's lore, and engage the game in some form--Mechwarrior Online may be Pay To Win, but it is Free To Play--and I'm certain your local used bookstore will have one or more of the paperbacks on the shelves, maybe even on Clearance. Of course you can find the novels and games at Amazon by searching for "BattleTech" and "MechWarrior".