Sunday, July 20, 2014

100-Word Sci-Fi: "Loss of Direction"

Every week, I write a hundred-word story inspired by a random word. This week's word is "location."
Smartphone showing maps, Source: Wikimedia
Loss of Direction
by Nigel G. Mitchell

Gerald Dempsey's frown deepened as he drove squinting into the darkness. "This doesn't look right at all."

The GPS on his phone said, "In five hundred feet, your execution will be on the right."

Gerald shook his head. "'Execution? Now I know this thing is broken.'"

"In one hundred feet, your execution will be on the right." Gerald felt a chill as he pulled up to an abandoned building. "What in the--"

"Your execution is on the right."

Gerald turned to the passenger window and screamed as a hideous creature burst through the glass.

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Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Weird Al Teaches Grammar in "Word Crimes"

Weird Al Yankovic is back to show us how it's done with his new album, Mandatory Fun. One of his singles released today is sorely needed in today's online grammar-deficient world, a parody of Robin Thicke's song "Blurred Lines" "Good Times" called "Word Crimes." Check out the most commonly used mispronunciations and grammatical errors, set to a funky beat.


BONUS
Related Post:
10 Words Everyone Needs to Stop Misspelling

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Monday, July 14, 2014

100-Word Sci-Fi: "A Clone of My Own"

Every week, I write a hundred-word story inspired by a random word. This week's word is "clone."

A Clone of My Own 
by Nigel G. Mitchell

Page Widrick thought having a clone would be awesome. She could have her clone clean up her house and go to college while she relaxed and watched TV.

She set the cloning machine down on the kitchen table, took a deep breath, and pushed the button.

Page opened her eyes. She looked down at another version of herself, still holding down the button on the machine.

"Awesome. It looks just like me." The other Page held out a mop and bucket to her. "You can start in the living room. Work until twelve, and class starts at one o'clock sharp."

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Tuesday, July 8, 2014

How James Patterson Became a One-Man Publishing Company

I'm not a huge fan of James Patterson, but I respect him. I read Along Came a Spider and found it a bit overblown, unrealistic, and the African-American main character Alex Cross a stereotypical anti-stereotype (he's a big tough black man...but he plays show tunes! And he's actually smart!). The last Patterson book I read was Kiss the Girls, which I couldn't make it through because of the rape scenes and general ickiness. But over the years, I've seen his name on every bookshelf in every bookstore. I don't like how he's turned himself into a brand name more than an author, but can't argue with success.

Saturday, July 5, 2014

100-Word Sci-Fi: "Red Light"

Every week, I write a hundred-word story inspired by a random word. This week's word is "traffic."
LED traffic light on red.jpg

"LED traffic light on red" by Kevin Payravi - Own work. Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons.

Red Light
by Nigel G. Mitchell

Burke Rhodes raced through the streets, gas pedal to the floor, to reach Fifth and Vine. He only had twenty-four seconds to stop the car accident. He had to change history.

The traffic light turned red. Burke didn't see the Maserati until its front end caught his rear bumper. Burke's car began to skid, collided with another car, and spun into the intersection at Fifth and Vine.

He watched the mini-van rushing towards him, and saw his wife behind the wheel, eyes wide with shock. Just before their cars collided, Burke knew he had been his wife's killer all along.

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Thursday, July 3, 2014

10 Words Everyone Needs to Stop Misspelling

I've made my share of typos, everyone does. But there are a few words that I see misspelled a lot. Anyone who's been through high school should have these down, but we all make mistakes every now and then. Here's a refresher by The Oatmeal in a more amusing format than your average grammar lesson.

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

New Release: "The Adventures of Couch Potato"

It's finally here! I'm proud to announce my latest novel, The Adventures of Couch Potato, is now available for download. Here's the summary:
Carl Potter was just a fat, bald, lazy guy until a freak accident transformed him into a fat, bald, lazy superhero named Couch Potato. Now he's forced to get off his beloved chair to fight an invasion of alien furniture, a ruthless cult of Elvis impersonators, and an army of groundhogs trying to plunge our world into an eternal six months of winter. Couch Potato: he'll save the world, if there's nothing good on TV.
The book includes three full-length adventures including Couch Potato's origin. I can pretty much guarantee you've never seen a superhero like him. You can download it now on Amazon (US and UK).

You can also help spread the word: Click here to tweet about it!

Oh, and as a bonus, my satirical booklet Hunting Elvis Presley For Fun and Profit is now available for free at Smashwords.

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Sunday, June 29, 2014

100-Word Sci-Fi: "Botwatch"

Every week, I write a hundred-word sci-fi story inspired by a random word. This week's word is "swimming."

powered by Fotopedia

Botwatch
by Nigel G. Mitchell

Professor Lazaro Pemberton faced the audience on the beach, and held out his hand to the row of men standing behind him. "A robot lifeguard is the perfect lifeguard. They never get tired, they have telescopic and infrared vision to scan the ocean, can swim at over fifty miles an hour, and can even use their hands as a defibrillator."

He pushed a button. The robots turned and marched into the ocean single-file. One by one, they began to swim, but sank with a popping of sparks.

Pemberton smiled, faintly. "The only problem is we, uh, can't get them wet."

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Monday, June 23, 2014

100-Word Sci-Fi: "To Light a Fire"

Every week, I write a hundred-word story inspired by a random word. This week's word is "match."
Image courtesy of Victor Habbick / FreeDigitalPhotos.net
To Light a Fire 
By Nigel G. Mitchell

It's impossible to light a match in space.

That's what Nicholas Turner kept thinking as the cold of space penetrated his sabotaged suit, driving the temperature lower. He stared at the match in his hand, placed there by the rest of the starship's crew to taunt him. It would bring heat if he could light it.

He wondered if Gregor felt this way when Turner pushed him out of the airlock. But Gregor had died quickly, whereas Turner would die slow. He supposed that's what he deserved. He let the match float away as the chill crept into his bones.

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Friday, June 20, 2014

eBooks vs. Paper Books [Infographic]

Newsweek raised the question of whether ebooks will eventually eliminate paper books. The answer, of course, is no. But they also created this really clever infographic about the stats. Click to enlarge:

[Via Techcrunch via Newsweek]

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