The Use of Social Media

To start today’s blog, I’d like to share a few pictures.

Taken in July 2020.
Taken today…

That is not fog, smog or clouds of any kind. This is smoke from the fires on the west coast of the United States. Which means have hunkered down with the windows and doors closed. That crap is not good for the lungs. I just hope for rain. Both here and down there.

Onto the topic.

Doing a simple google search, I see places like Facebook and Twitter being called the most wretched hive of scum and villainy. While this may be true, there are advantages to setting up a social media account and making use of it. I talk to authors of different calibers. I talk to those who are big names, to those still trying to write their first manuscript. While the subject doesn’t come up often, I have heard of some (mainly those just starting out) who will not touch social media, or if they have it, they refuse to let anyone in.

I find this mindset problematic for many reasons. The first is it closes off the creative from the wider community. Writing is a lonely occupation spending hours by yourself hoping people will look at it, let along read it.

By being involved in the greater community, it’s obvious the writer is not alone. There are thousands of people all trying to do the same thing. While many see them as competitors, they are more like comrades in the same word trenches you are. They experience similar events in their journey. Most are more than willing to talk about their process. These lessons are vital. Growing up as one of five kids, I learned many lessons from my siblings mistakes. Usually by making note of the idiocy they did and not doing it myself. In the creative community, learning from others allows you to jump forward in the journey.

The next is fans. For those starting out, this is probably the last thing on their mind. But its important.

I’ll bring you to the Galaxy’s Edge Universe. (There website is: ) These have all the tropes movies like Star Wars started, but the authors of this series sought to write sci-fi stories the way they were meant to be made. These stories may not have taken off, except the authors were on social media.

People wanted to hang out, ask questions, and get inside scoops. People have an innate need to belong somewhere. Humans will go out of our way to find the social group we belong with. When we are not with that group, we feel excessive anxiety and stress. This is the reason workers went to the pub after work in the 1800s. That was where they had their people. We have the internet. When we find we have the same likes as others, we gather. Look up the, I Love Lucy Conventions. They have been going since 1996. As a creative being on the internet and social media, even if it’s only on a professional level.

The last is networking. The saying goes, “It’s not what you know, it’s who you know.” This is one of the least understood statement of human history. In school and in the horrors of the real world, they teach people to write resumes. When employers look at resumes, they are names (if they even have that.) The art of networking is hidden, out of sight and unknown. By being on social media and talking to other authors, you hear about opportunities. An author friend of mine got excited about the storming Area 51 meme. Produced an anthology about what would happen when people stormed it. He needed stories to be submitted in three weeks. This is much shorter than anyone ever does. But he needed the time. He asked me if I wanted to submit. This gave me the opportunity to submit. There was not a public call for stories.

If I had not immersed myself into social media, I would not have heard about the project. I could not have submitted. I did, and they selected my story. That was not the only project social media has given me access to. There have been others with more opportunities down the pipe. Some don’t turn into anything, while others do.

This journey is not something I can do alone. It takes support from many people for it to become a reality. The easiest way is to visit my Amazon Author Page and purchase one of my books. They are available in all countries and for free in Kindle Unlimited. I have a tip jar set up at Ko-Fe, where you can buy me a coffee. Or you can also visit me on Facebook. Your help and support are much appreciated.


The world has changed. One day I was looking forward to the start of my kid’s spring break with family coming over. I have a month left of my semester at university before I start the summer session.

Now, things are different. The spring break went from two weeks of having my kids in the house to being done until September. Except the school district didn’t say, it’ll be back in September. They said it’s closed until further notice. To me, that means I may be homeschooling the kids for the next few years. If it lasts that long. My kids were disappointed when I told them spring break was over, and I bought them school books. They have been doing schoolwork every day, whether they like it or not.

For me and my schooling, it has all been transferred to online learning. Which is different. Now students all over have to learn the discipline to self-motivate to get their work done. For me, it’s challenging to get the assignments done on time, and I think my self-discipline is higher than most. Not better than most, but it’s high. My wife might say something else about my work habits. She calls me a workaholic perfectionist under my own tyrannical rule.

The amount of stress from the uncertainty is everywhere. I can’t turn on Facebook or Youtube without seeing it. The uncertainty of money, food, etc. is everywhere. Store shelves are bare as people stock up on essentials. The last thing people want to do is to be locked in their homes and starve to death. (I’m not talking about the TP fiasco. I don’t understand that.)

However. All of that is an aside and not what the blog is about. Like many, I have self-isolated into my own house. I have a terrible history with bronchitis, and as this causes breathing issues, I have no interest in getting it.

What to spend my time working on?

For me, the answer is one of three things in no particular order. I help my kids with their schoolwork. Or I do my own school work. Or I write my novels. I am even hoping to read a few books myself.

For you, it might be different. It is something to do with escapism, and I got your escapism right here.

If you are from the United States and not Canada, like I am, Kindle Unlimited has a two-month trial. This is a good deal, and details can be found here.

Once you have the trial, what do you read?

Sleeping Legion Series by J.R. Handley

One of my all-time favorite series filled in intense action and in-depth characters.

Rebyrth by R. Max Tillsley

For those with kids needing distractions, this is a favorite story of my son, who says its a great adventure story about robots, conspiracies, and kids defying all odds.

Cone of Silence by Drue Bernardi

Take all of the disaster books, and the cream of the lot will be this one. Written by a storm chaser, this is about a meteorologist trying to do the right thing.

Demon Scroll by Tim Niederriter

Demon Scroll is an epic sword and sorcery novel where the heroes and monsters may be one and the same.

Jordie in Charge by E. A. Shanniak

For those whose takes aren’t in the standard fantasy and science fiction genres, Shanniak has got you covered. She writes romance novels set in a fantasy world of her own.

Storming Area 51, an anthology.

Thirty-five awesome stories – one kick-ass meme that started it all.
It started as a joke. Storm Area 51 they said. They can’t stop all of us they said. But all laughter stopped when the U.S. Air Force mobilized the reserves and pulled out the big guns.

This is an anthology where you can find my short story, “Rise of the Ghids.” Storming area 51 is all about people to storm the secret base to see the aliens. But what about the aliens? What is their story? That is what I told.

Seismic Shock by Nathan Pedde

This is my own novel. Set in Tokyo, Japan, when Yellowstone supervolcano blows its top. This starts a chain of disasters from earthquakes to tsunamis that shut down nations and society as its currently known.

I hope these suggestions help you to spend your time in isolation.

This journey is not something I can do alone. It takes support from many people for it to become a reality. The easiest way is to visit my Amazon Author Page and purchase one of my books. They are available in all countries and for free on Kindle Unlimited. I do have a tip jar set up at Ko-Fe, where you can buy me a coffee. Or you can also visit me on Facebook. Your help and support are much appreciated.



Storming Area 51: A Bayonet Books Anthology Vol 2

A few short months ago when the Facebook group (with the same name as the title of the anthology) was created, this took the internet by storm and won it. In fact, it is still winning the internet. JR Handley collected tales of the joke that became a meme that became a thing that might be a real thing. 

The story that I wrote is called “The Rise of the Ghids.” It is the story of the Storming of Area 51 from the aliens perspective.

Imprisoned his whole life, Challco knew nothing about the outside world. His world
consisted of his underground home; except it wasn’t really his home. Born underground, his people were from a distant land; several thousand light-years distant. Challco wasn’t human, he was a Ghid — an alien.

With the event of Storm Area 51 exploding on the surface above him, perhaps this was
the distraction that he needed — his one and only chance to get freedom for himself and his people? Perhaps it was the time for Challco to show his human captors the Ghids did exist? But do the humans come in peace?

With 35 different stories from Michael J Allen and Marisa Wolf this is not a book to miss. Some of the best science-fiction the science-fiction has to offer. Click the link below.