Super Bad Hair Day: revised Createspace cover!

My interior text for Createspace went okay. I used a 6×9 Word template from Createspace.  But my cover? Not so much.

I tried using my cover from my Kindle book. The cover came out printable, but it had a white border, and the back cover was blank (except for the ISBN).

So I generated (depends on page count) and downloaded the 6×9 book cover template  from Createspace. Then I used Gimp. Fortunately, Batton Lash also gave me the Photoshop version of the Kindle cover, so I imported it into Gimp and resized it to 6×9, 300 dpi. Then I figured out how to import the Kindle cover into the book cover template, moved it to the front cover, and wrote text on the back cover (along with Holly’s “eyes up here” art). At 66 pages, this book will not have a printable spine (130 pages minimum).

I used this from YouTube to get a general idea of how to start. I did have to look up how to import and then how to move the Kindle cover art.

And I used this to figure out the bugs for adding text (the text was coming out too tiny until I watched this).

I had to figure out a few other things, like whiting out the background and moving stuff around (the move tool, dummy!) and the like. So in 24 hours, I will see how it looks. I hope it looks better.

Super Bad Hair Day: second edition!

I have republished Super Holly Hansson in: Super Bad Hair Day. My changes:

  • I added Chapter Zero of The Comic Book Code.
  • I made several minor edits suggested by a fellow member of the South Bay Writers Club (I will post about that soon).
  • I fixed a few typos (GRR, I can’t believe a few sneaked into the first edition!). Running both the Storyist and Microsoft Word spelling checker helped me squash typos.

And I created a version of this on Createspace. (It is under review, I hope it will print okay.) A few comments on that:

  • Since I write in Storyist, I copied the story into a 6×9 Microsoft Word template that I downloaded from Createspace.
  • When I reviewed the uploaded interior contents, I had to adjust the page numbers and add the ISBN numbers in the original Word file, and upload again.
  • I had to create a new Createspace account even though I had a Kindle account. And I made sure to enter my royalty information right away.
  • I set the price at $6. The minimum allowed was about $5.40. More expensive than I like, but I can live with it.
  • I hunted for a webpage with the steps listed out, but did not find it. I found the video below very helpful. For example, he suggested that I have my Amazon page for my Kindle version open so I could cut and paste most of the data.

I ain’t afraid of no troll!

trumpbustersTroll buster #1: I have a theory about trolls hating the new Ghostbusters movie. The main villain (tiny spoiler here) is a pasty white guy who thinks he is entitled to the world’s respect. Trolls hate seeing themselves on big movie screens, it’s like Dracula cringing from a cross. They hate being proved wrong, as in Ghostbusters has big fat box office and high ratings on Rotten Tomatoes. And they hate when those whom they trolled hit back, as with Richard you’ll-never-be-Roger-Ebert Roeper and Milo racist-sexist-Buttburper Yiannopoulos (there is nothing willfully stupider than a gay man sucking up to the radical right). Roeper smacked by feminists? Milo kicked off Twitter? That’ll ruin my sleep for several seconds.

Troll buster #2: How dare the Republican National Convention take place in the same week as the San Diego Comic Con! Typical bullies, grabbing media attention from the biggest geekfest in the world! And why is the RNC called a convention, they’re the guys who put the “con” into convention! (How do you know when Trump is lying? His lips move. http://www.factcheck.org/person/donald-trump/, and Google “Trump fact check”.) One good thing: as a liberal to the left of most Democrats, having watched those RNC trolls will make it a lot easier for me to vote for Hillary. Thank you, trolls, for making up my mind for me.

Sulu’s Gay Trek!

In J.J. Abrams’ Star Trek Beyond, there’s a quickie scene where Sulu and his husband are raising a baby. So Sulu is gay.

WELL, IT’S ABOUT TIME WE GOT A GAY STAR TREK CHARACTER!!! Were the Federation gays hiding in transporter pattern buffers, like Scotty did for 75 years? The Federation was not, is not, and never will be homophobic. The Vulcans would never allow such illogic.

But lovable gay icon George Takei (do I have to remind you that he played Sulu in the original Star Trek?) is not so hot on the idea. He feels that Gene Roddenberry wrote Sulu as straight, and that they should have created a new gay character for the Star Trek movies. George ought to know that a new Trek character, especially a gay one, is likely to wear a red shirt.

As a Trekkie, I can understand how George feels. Sulu is straight in the Roddenberry Star Trek universe. In the original series episode The Naked Time, when drunk on a weird virus/chemical/McGuffin, swashbuckling Sulu hugged Uhura and appeared to like it (I know I would have!). Star Trek Generations mentions that Sulu has a daughter. Okay, she could’ve been adopted, or even replicated. But in the Star Trek cartoon episode The Magicks of Megas-tu (as a Trekkie since the original series, I declare the cartoon series to be canon), Sulu magically created a beautiful girl and tries his best to embrace her.

In Abrams’ first Star Trek movie, that gargantuan Romulan mining ship went back to the time of Kirk’s birth so the evil Captain Nero could reboot the Star Trek universe from Roddenberry to Abrams. And mess up James T. Kirk’s life. And REALLY mess up the planet Vulcan. But how could a reboot have turned Sulu gay? One does not choose to be gay, so there must be something else, something science fiction, something Trekkie. (And something I will likely put on one of my essays pages, I had too much fun writing this!) So I offer my little fanfic, titled:

SULU’S GAY TREK! (OR HOW SULU CAN BE STRAIGHT IN RODDENBERRY STAR TREK AND GAY IN J.J. ABRAMS STAR TREK WITHOUT BREAKING CANON!)

SCENE 1:
THE BRIDGE OF THE ROMULAN MINING STARSHIP NARADA, WHERE CAPTAIN NERO, A MANLY ROMULAN MINING MAN, SITS IN THE CAPTAIN’S CHAIR AND FROWNS, MAKING HIS MANLY FACIAL TATTOOS EVEN MORE MANLY.

CAPTAIN NERO: Avast, my mighty manly Romulan mining crew, for aboard me mighty manly starship, even the women are mighty manly! Our big mining starship has just passed through a big space-time rift, and now I spy a puny little starship whose captain might tell us where to find that logical Spock scoundrel upon whom we wish to wage our manly vengeance! ARM ALL WEAPONS!!!

THE MIGHTY MANLY ROMULAN MINING CREW: Aye aye, Captain! ARRRR!!!

SCENE 2:
THE BRIDGE OF THE FEDERATION STARSHIP KELVIN.

FIRST OFFICER GEORGE KIRK: (talking on his communicator) Really, honey? Your labor pains feel like he’s throwing full body blows?

THE NAVIGATOR: (a young man of Japanese descent hunching over his navigation console) Sir? I detect a tremendous space-time-from-the-future disturbance from that giant stormy rift! And another incredibly manly disturbance from that gigantic ship that just emerged from the rift! (He studies the readings.) As though everyone on that ship is so manly that they only like other… wait, the disturbances are combining…

THE CAPTAIN OF THE KELVIN: Into what?

THE NAVIGATOR: Into a concentrated energy wave that covers the entire sexual spectrum! And it’s heading directly at our ship! Um, along with a bunch of really big torpedoes and disruptor rays.

THE CAPTAIN OF THE KELVIN: You might have led with that last thing. SHIELDS UP!

SOUND EFFECTS: SKRAAA-CHOOOOOOOOMMMM!!! FZZT! BZZT! ZZZZZURP! THUMP BUMP WHUMP!!!

The entire bridge lurches to tilt at a 30 degree angle. Sparks fly out of control consoles that, after all these centuries, still do not have circuit breakers installed. Crewman fall out of their chairs.

THE NAVIGATOR: (picking himself off the floor) When are they gonna put seat belts on starships? (He checks his console.) Oh no, shields are down! We’re open to any energy attack imaginable!

A rainbow energy baseball rushes toward the main bridge viewscreen, and through it, and onto the navigator’s fly.

THE NAVIGATOR: (doing a double back flip) wwwwWWWWOW!!!

THE CAPTAIN OF THE KELVIN: What was THAT?

THE NAVIGATOR: (staggering) Oh… my… I just felt a surge of incredibly manly energy! Enough to bend sexual space-time 180 degrees!

The main viewscreen lights up with Nero’s mighty manly face.

CAPTAIN NERO: Avast, enemy captain! I be Nero of the Romulan mining ship Narada! Shiver yer timbers over to me bridge where I will torture you for information about that scurvy dog, Admiral Spock!

THE CAPTAIN OF THE KELVIN: Admiral who?

THE NAVIGATOR: Narada? Isn’t that Romulan for raging rainbow?

CAPTAIN NERO: (his tattooed face turning several shades of red, or green if that is the color of Romulan blood) ARRRRR!!! Me blood be boiling with rage! Prepare to enter the Romulan version of Davy Jones’ Locker!

THE CAPTAIN OF THE KELVIN: (disappearing in a transporter beam) But I’m not even wearing a red shirt!

THE NAVIGATOR: (to the first officer) Sir, their incredibly big and manly weapons are powering up again. Speaking of manly, shall we man all escape pods?

FIRST OFFICER GEORGE KIRK: Yeah, save one for me while I distract Mr. Romulan Road Rage. Computer! Set the autopilot for a collision course with that mining ship!

Computer voice from control console: (singing) Daisy, Daisy, give me your answer, do.

FIRST OFFICER GEORGE KIRK: Nuts. Looks like I’m the designated driver.

SCENE 3:
CAPTION: A FEW YEARS LATER.

A hospital room. The navigator stands beside a hospital bed where a young Japanese woman holds her newborn baby.

THE WOMAN: (lovingly looking at the navigator) He’s beautiful. (She looks at the baby.) Little Hikaru Sulu. My healthy and strong baby boy. And so stubborn!

THE NAVIGATOR: How so?

The woman points to the baby’s diaper. It is colored like a rainbow.

THE WOMAN: We tried white, blue, and even pink, but he kept tearing them off.

THE BABY: (looking into the camera and smiling) Oh, my!

X-Men Apocabully part 2

Just saw X-Men Apocalypse (I had credit on a Fandango gift card). My previous post on Apocalypse is still accurate, but he now has an annoying hissing bully voice, an ounce more personality than a deck chair, a couple ounces of explanation of his powers, and less than an ounce of personal motivation. Gimme some “so that’s why I’m a mutant GOD” backstory!

As for the four horses, is it mind control or isn’t it? Make up your minds! And please don’t say power corrupts, I have covered that!

Boy was I impatient with Jean Grey, c’mon and do the goddess in the machine thing already! On second thought, don’t. Clobber the big bully some other way, a way that works if you are not a comic book geek. And this is coming from a comic book geek.

And boy did I love Quicksilver, his scenes alone are almost worth the ticket price! More Quicksilver, more more more!

And at the risk of repeating myself, boy would Super Holly super-punch Apocalypse while taking his various dirty superpowered attacks and telling him what Popeye told Slag the Slugger: “I admit you’re giving me a tough fight, but you can’t win! You’re a crook! And I am fighting for what’s right!”

(I could not find that comic, so here is one comic from Popeye’s first fight with Bluto. A two-week slugfest. Boy, could E.C. Segar draw! Holly would kiss Popeye on sight.)

popeye v bluto

P.S. I got one more good thing out of this movie: an idea for a villain. Stinkupalips. An Apocalypse type villain whose power is super smelly stuff. A great guy to toss at Kittygirl and the Puppy Brothers.