Sunday, June 12, 2011


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Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Adventure Games and the Training of the Creative Writer

Adventure games are interactive stories that are played on computers. My first adventure game I was King’s Quest. My father bought me my first computer around second grade and I think the game came with it. I loved it despite its poor graphics and its awkward way of controlling the character where you have to type in commands. If you do not type in a command that the game’s creators programmed the game to understand, a typical response that you received was “You cannot do that.” Often I would have to figure out the correct way to phrase a command because what I typed should have worked and communicated what I wanted my character to do in an accurate way, but the game just wasn’t programmed to understand the words that I used. Another annoying thing about the game is how easy it was to die. You could fall into a lake and drown, fall of a seemingly bottomless cliff (which is akin to Super Mario Bros), accidently press the wrong arrow key while you’re trying to climb stairs to get up to the land of the clouds and accidentally fall to your doom. Also, a monster could appear out of nowhere and eat you unless your character was near the edge of the screen when the monster appeared and you escaped to safety by going to the next screen, where the monster ceased to exist as if by magic. Despite these difficulties, I still loved the game. Another aspect of adventure games worth noting is the games make you confront problems and your job is to solve the problems. If you do not, you cannot proceed in the game and you will wander around aimlessly and get very bored. This is the primary reason why adventure games are not as popular as they used to be. The problems are akin to solving puzzles and are most often resolved by using items that you find while you play the game. Also, unlike video games, you only have one life. So once you are dead, YOU ARE DEAD, although later adventure games would eliminate this possibility. But the death scenario did not make game playing completely impossible because there was a feature where you could save your game from any point during it and restore your game whenever you wanted. Back during the early days of King’s Quest, this meant you had to take out the game’s floppy disk, insert a blank disk, save your game, and remove the saved game disk to replace it with the game disk. Same thing when you wanted to restore your game. This process would later be more efficient when they changed it so you could save your game directly onto your computer.

The term “adventure game” was usually not an appropriate classification for most adventure games besides King’s Quest and the sequels that followed. The reason why the genre of games is called that is because the first adventure game was simply called Adventure (although its alternative title was Colossal Cave Adventure). This was came out a decade before King’s Quest, which was one of the first adventure games that used graphics. Before, they were entirely text based and “before my time,” although I tried a few of them out later on. The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy game was of particular note because it was nearly impossible to play without dying every few minutes and was co-written by Douglas Adams.

So fast forward maybe a decade and adventure games went through a major change. No longer did you have to type in commands for your character. Instead, the games became ‘point and click’ based. You could choose certain options such as LOOK or TALK or PICK UP or USE and manipulate objects in your inventory to interact with objects and characters that are on the screen (or combine your inventory objects to create an object that is entirely new that can be used for a different purpose). So with these advances of game play, the difficulties of controlling your character via typing in text commands ceased to exist. But instead of this, solutions to solving puzzles became much more difficult. Nothing was ever simple. You could not quench your character’s thirst by obtaining water from a body of water or a sink. Instead, you had to participate in a long process of actions to solve the problem which were often incredibly absurd in nature. Because of this, I feel playing adventure games during your youth (and perhaps now) is an excellent way to train yourself to become a creative writer. They teach you to think laterally and are akin to the kinds of movies that wouldn’t have lasted beyond its first few scenes if the protagonist made a sensible decision rather than a wrong decision that caused their life to spiral out of control and created the setup for the rest of the movie. But unlike these kinds of movies, adventure games never give you the option to act sensibly and solve puzzles using the most sensible and effective means.

Let’s use a game as an example. Gabriel Knight 3: Blood of the Sacred, Blood of the Damned was the last adventure game produced by Sierra, who produced King’s Quest and was one of the top two companies in the adventure game industry. You play Gabriel Knight, an occult detective. The game occurs in Rennes-le-Chateau, France, and its plot is inspired by the same source material as The Da Vinci Code. Both the game and the novel took elements from the alleged non-fiction book, Holy Blood, Holy Grail, which in turn was based on what may be the greatest hoax in the twentieth century.

So anyway, you are Gabriel Knight and your objective during one point in the game is to rent a motorcycle. For some reason that I cannot recall, you cannot simply rent a motorcycle. Instead, you must first disguise yourself as a police detective (whose voice is provided by Mark Hamill) who followed you from New Orleans for a reason that I cannot recall. Here is a condensed solution to the process of obtaining the disguise (Credit goes to this site:

First, you return to a museum and steal a red hat from the lost and found box (the game did not allow you to take the hat earlier, but it does now because your character somehow knows that the hat is essential to his disguise). Next, you go to a church and wait outside of it while its Abbe is spraying plants. Eventually, he will go indoors and leave the spray bottle outside. You snatch it. You turn the corner and walk down a street. You will see a black cat. You pet it. The cat runs away, into a small opening in a nearby shed. You take masking tape out of your inventory and attach it to the shed’s hole (if you do not have the tape, you must return to your hotel room and obtain it from inside your dresser). Walk away from the shed. The cat will now crawl on a ledge and is too high for you to pet or grab. Select the spray bottle from your inventory and use it on the cat. This will cause him to jump off the ledge and run back inside the shed through the hole, leaving a piece of its fur stuck to the masking tape. Grab the fur. Return to the hotel and collect the items that are needed for your disguise if you missed them the first time around (they include a black marker, a piece of candy, and a packet of syrup). Knock on the police detective’s door. He’ll let you in and you’ll have a conversation where he mentions his passport. Leave the room and put the piece of candy on a table in the hallway. Go downstairs to the lobby. Buzz detective’s room (I guess the concierge is not around to stop you) to get him to come down. Walk up the stairs to the hallway outside the detective’s room. Watch him leave the room and bend over to grab the candy on the table. While he is occupied, steal his passport. When he goes downstairs, enter his room and steal his coat. Open your inventory. Use the black marker on the photo in the passport to draw on a mustache. Then combine the cat’s fur and syrup to create a fake mustache. Then combine the red hat and the mustache and the detective’s coat to complete your disguise. Then go to the motorcycle rental shop.

So why the fuck do you need to be in disguise in order to rent the motorcycle? I do not remember.

Why the fuck do you have to concoct a fake mustache when the person who you are impersonating does not have a mustache? I have no idea.

Why the fuck did you have to make a fake mustache out of cat hair when head from your character’s head or body would have worked perfectly fine? This defies logic.

And then using maple syrup to attach the fake mustache to your upper lip is just the icing on the cake.

So this is an example of a solution to a problem in an adventure game that is carried out in an extremely indirect way. It is doubtful that anyone figured out how to solve it without looking up the solution on the internet. If they actually solved it without assistance, it obviously would have taken a lot of trial and error.

This solution to the problem is not good writing. Do not do this in your fiction. But nevertheless, it is a good example of a quirky way that your protagonists can overcome conflict.

Other adventure games are more humor-oriented and absurd. I would suggest you play them if you’re interested in writing that sort of thing. I would recommend the sexually perverse Leisure Suit Larry series, the Space Quest series, and my personal favorite, Maniac Mansion: Day of the Tentacle (which is the sequel to another great adventure game, although it’s old and very primitive). Actually, the games that I just mentioned are all fairly old and you will probably have a lot of trouble getting them to work on a modern-day computer.

Oh, and I just want to mention that you play three different characters in Day of the Tentacle: one of them ends up stuck in the past, one in the future, and the last remains in the present. There is a toilet in the mansion where you can flush items that your characters obtain throughout the game through time so the other characters can receive them and use them in their own settings. Time machine toilets=awesome.

So it’s been like forever since adventure games were actually popular, although I hear they are still well-liked in Europe. But there is one particular company in the U.S. who produces really great adventure games: Telltale Games. Much of the staff who formerly worked for LucasArts (the creators of Day of the Tentacle) work for them. I would recommend their Sam and Max series of games. They are about a two “freelance” policeman: a bear in a suit and his partner, a psychotic rabbit-thing. They solve cases. The solutions for the game puzzles are completely absurd and require lateral thinking, but are not difficult to solve like that Gabriel Knight ridiculous. Each case plays out over a “season” and you buy an “episode” to play at a time. It is fairly cheap. You can try out demos to see if you enjoy the games before buying. Check them out. They are worth it. Your brainstorming skills will thank you.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

The New Orthodox Order Of Spuds MacKenzie

Does anyone want to join my cult? I wrote this when I was like 14 or 15:



High Pope Godoth Frumpfurt
Pope Tater Perdu
Pope T.X. Superfly
Pope "Bob" Dobbs
Pope Monty Catsin
Pope add your name here

Order greeting - YIP YOP.
response - FUCK YEAH!!
second response - RIGHT ON!!!

Have you ever noticed that god spelled backwards is dog. This is what it was originally supposed to be, until the ANTI-spud changed it around. Do you believe that? It has been written in the true book of revelations. There is no god, there is only SPUDS. The idea of god was invented by the ANTI-spud to keep the heat off him. The ANTI-spud is destined to destroy the world in 23 dog years. The only way to survive is to join the order. You will be saved by the otherworldly Frisbee, the SEX GODD, umm no, sorry about that, I really mean the SEX BITCH. The end times are near, of course, according to them, we are, and always will be in the end times. It has been written in the true book. The false book was written by the ANTI-spud in a plot to distort the views of all peoples. What evidence is there that there is a god? You have probably been worshipping god, the false deity all your life. Unbeknownst to you, you are actually worshipping the ANTI-spud.

Spuds MacKenzie died for our sins.

SPUDS MacKenzie visited our prophet, Godoth Frumpfurt while he was having his afternoon tea on December 23, 1932 . Everything seemed to freeze. The clock stopped, and the tea that had been poured in his mouth had frozen in mid-air. Spuds spoke to him, " I am SPUDS MacKenzie, thee original party animal. My soul is located on the Dog Star located in the Sirius System. I am thee creator of life, and I am located everywhere and nowhere. I have been watching, and influencing thee history of your planet for eons, and at this present moment I am very upset. I am speaking you at this moment to defy the teachings contained in the bible of my arch-nemesis - the ANTI-spud. The teachings of the ANTI-spud is nowhere near as horrible as the way that they are being interpreted by the common fool. I need you to recruit people to defy the teachings and clean up this immense doggie bowl. I am not privileged to tell you my teachings, but just think of it as just being the opposite of everything or nothing, or the ANTI-spud's teachings or the common fool's teachings. Bow WOW RUff ruff growl.

It has been written that the ANTI-spud visited the head of the advertising department of Budweiser in a dream. The ANTI-spud convinced him to use the ANTI-spud for the new Budweiser ad campaign. Vast riches were promised. The next day the head found a spuds look-alike to use. The ad campaign was a great success, and Budweiser beer proceeded to increase their sales by millions of dollars. This is why we are forbidden to drink Bud beer except on sodfjday.

Why should you believe us? Who else is there to trust these dog days. We openly proclaim ourselves to be blasphemers and liars. WE ARE BLASPHEMERS AND LIARS. Never in a million dog years, would I trust anybody who stated otherwise. Everybody, without a doubt is. What is a blasphemer anyway? What gives anybody the right to decide what's right and what is wrong. Do not believe in anything. Believe in everything. This religion encourages agnosticism. We are to my knowledge, the only religion that reveals itself to be clever bullshit. All other joke religions are clever bullshit (all serious religions are only bullshit), but do not outright state it. It is only obvious to the clever. We recognize that there this doggie dish is made up of stupid people, so we shall state it outright .


The full force of SPUDS was revealed to me when I was sitting in science class. I went into a trance and SPUDS spoke. I later ponder what caused the trance, science class or SPUDS. My guess that science class was the cause of the trance. If this is true, then it proves that something actually does come out of school. It teaches us how to enter mystical states of being. Back to the SPUDS, I was told everything that I think is wrong, but it is so much closer to the truth and to the untruth then just about everybody else. After that one statement, my vision ended. I have no way of knowing whether or not I was visited by the true SPUDS or the ANTI-spud. It seemed like the true SPUDS to me, because it did not seem like something the ANTI-spud would say. Perhaps that is just what the ANTI-spud wants me to think???


In the beginning there was the empty kennel. Then through various complicated methods, it was full. It all started when toad sang his lovely song. The heavens weeped joyfully. Toad was very depressed. This was because he was very lonely, and bored. Because of toad's lovely song, the heavens felt pity for him, and excreted into the kennel. Out from the ashes of the excretion rose pea pods. These pea pods talked, but they were not very good company for toad because of their lack of brains. Toad had a special name for these pods and called them all obergs. After a while, Toad got very annoyed with the obergs from listening to chatter nonsense endlessly. He stamped on them with his feet until they were all crushed to death. Out of the ashes of the obergs remains arose numerous broccoli. They were rather intelligent but their conversations was very cold and robot-like.(This is very strange for broccoli is organic, and not robot-like at all. Perhaps this is misinformation created by the ANTI-spud. It figures). After a while Toad grew hatred for the broccoli. (This was the first time the feeling of anger was shown. It is rumored to be a creation of the ANTI-spud. Although anger may be a good thing . Who am I to say? From this, you could come to the conclusion that broccoli is also the creation of the ANTI-spud. It is difficult to tell, but everything could be the creation of the ANTI-spuds, of perhaps SPUDS, or perhaps even toad, or the heavens. Try to think about it all for a few hours. Does it give you a headache? If the answer to the question is no then you are worthy to become a member. The reason for this is because thou art a liar.) I wrote so much that has nothing to do with creation that I forgot what really happened. I'll remember it later. All I know is that it has something to do with SPUDS.

Our gift to you when you become a member is the divine excuse. With it, you can get away with any crazy shit that you want, just by stating to the person that it was done for religious purposes. You can do stuff like walking around naked, anything in which you have gotten in trouble for in the past. WARNING divine excuse does not work perfectly. If you should decide to kill someone you dislike for religious purposes, if caught you will still be punished. Your sentence will still be decreased because of the divine excuse.



Throughout the years, the ANTI-spuds has possessed many so-called great minds. You know the type, all those self-important assholes who made up useless, unnecessary shit to waste our time studying in school. The ANTI-spud did this to steal our qqq. Just think about it, all languages may have been created by the ANTI-spud. Without a doubt all mathematical theories were created by the ANTI-spud. If I was living centuries ago and was not controlled by the ANTI- spud then my languages and useless theories would be taught in school.

You are real. Aren't you?

It is a sin to copy others ideas, unless of course other members of the order do not contribute ideas themselves. If this happens and the brain is restless, then this law may be considered void. Speaking of such, Joshua Norton, or as he preferred to be called Norton I proclaimed himself Emperor of the United Stated and protector of Mexico in 1859. Norton I was a very likable fellow although he was a loon. Even though he was poor, he was fed well in some of San Francisco's best restaurants. Even though he was a loon, he had all of his state proclamations published in San Francisco’s newspapers. While supposedly rational reformers failed to crack the national bank monopoly, Norton I had his own currency accepted throughout San Francisco. When imbeciles decided to attack the Chinese, and sane men would try to stop them, Norton I did nothing but stand in the street, head bowed, praying. The imbeciles dispersed. The Order has chosen it's own Emperor of the United States. It's name is Emperor Norton II, (how original) otherwise known as the supreme pea pod.

To become a member you shall only want to become a member. Once we get numerous people, we may get a bit greedy and start charging a few dollars. The duties for members are to spread the faith. Of which faith, I cannot tell. Just make sure it is all your own and no one else's.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Free PDFs of Rico Slade Will Fucking Kill You and Cameron Pierce's Abortion Arcade

The two books will be available for free download until the end of the month. Go here for the info:

Thursday, May 19, 2011

The Series Finale of Smallville Reveals the TRUTH about Judgment Day, AKA October 21st

I have watched every episode of Smallville. I consider it a guilty pleasure due to its inconsistency.  Some of its episodes are great while others are awful. For example, the recent series finale was a disappointment, although watching it has made me an enlightened being.

In the episode, there is an extremely revealing scene where Darkseid’s cronies (Granny Goodness, Desaad, and Glorius Godfrey) are chilling in a room that looks it's inside a church. In case Darkseid is unfamiliar to you, he is an evil god, one of the most powerful characters in the DC universe, and he is probably the greatest villain in comic book history (although Superman killed him off recently in the comics with the help of Batman and comic writer, Grant Morrison).

Darkseid is supposed to be the primary antagonist of the last season of Smallville even though he only gets about thirty seconds of screen time in his true form along with a few minutes of screen time when he’s possessing the body of Lex Luthor’s dad, who is from the alternate dimension where he raised Clark rather than being Lex's “real” dad (because Lex killed his dad, I assume because the actor wanted to quit the show, and the show’s creators pulled this alternate reality crap because the dad is played by John Glover and John Glover kicks ass and they probably wanted him back for the last season but couldn't think of a good reason to resurrect his dead body). So anyway, Lex Luthor’s dad is sporting a hobo beard. Also, he sounds like the vocalist of an industrial band, which is the only indication that he’s possessed by Darkseid besides his hammy dialogue.

So getting back to Judgment Day, here is a transcription of Darkseid’s cronies’ dialogue:

Desaad: The day of judgment is upon us.

Granny Goodness: We’ve saved a million souls from the coming apocalypse to serve the Dark Lord.

When she says “the coming apocalypse,” she’s referring to how Darkseid’s planet is about to smash into the Earth and kill everyone who hasn’t been “saved.” By the way, his planet is called Apokolips.

Then Green Arrow shows up. And he uses a silly deep voice to disguise himself like Christian Bale in the Batman prequels, although I’m not entirely sure why because the cronies already know his identity. And Granny Goodness is surprised that Green Lantern’s omega symbol, which one of the cronies etched onto his head, is gone (Clark is responsible for this). The millions of souls that Granny Goodness referred to earlier are humans that have this symbol on their heads. And the symbols have turned them evil and shit.

In the comics, Darkseid never gave the omega symbol to a million people. Instead, during a big, confusing comic book event called Final Crisis, he sends something called the Anti-Life Equation to every email address on Earth, causing almost everyone to fall under his control and be totally evil and shit. Up until that moment, he had a major boner for the Anti-Life Equation and spent his life trying to track it down. I have no idea how he succeeded in obtaining it.

So basically, the omega symbol is Smallville’s version of the Anti-Life Equation. And Desaad tells Green Arrow that he was “sooo close to experiencing the rapture” and he mumbles something about how those with the Omega mark would serve his Lord “while all others will perish.” Then he asks, “Do you really think you possess the power to vanquish our Lord from the souls of those he saved?”

I’m not going to tell you what happens next in case you want to watch the episode and find out for yourself, but essentially the writers of the show are associating Darkseid and “his” end of the world with Jesus and Judgment Day. And this would have been extremely anti-Christian if it were coming out of the mouths of the good guys rather than the bad guys.

DON’T READ THIS IF YOU WANT OCTOBER 21ST TO BE A SURPRISE: Clark defeats Darkseid in a really anticlimactic way and removes the omega mark from the million people who have it (along with saving the world) in a really anticlimactic way.

In summary, Smallville’s writers are great prophets (even if they may not always be great writers). They have predicted what will occur on October 21ST. God--who is as evil as fuck, has a hobo’s beard, and is in an industrial band--will judge us and sentence us all to death (except for the millions of people who his cronies have saved). But Superman will save the day by defeating him in a really anticlimactic way. And “this should encourage each one of us to go to” Superman “and beseech Him for His great mercy.”

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Book Review Solicitations

Would anyone who does reviews for a publication of any sort like to review my new book, Rico Slade Will Fucking Kill You? If so, contact me (It is a novella, and the second book published by Lazy Fascist, a new imprint of Eraserhead Press.)

You can read more info about the book in my last entry.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Rico Slade Will Fucking Kill You

My new book was just published by Lazy Fascist (which is a new-ish imprint of Eraserhead Press)

Back Cover Text:

What the crap is Arnold Schwarzenegger doing on the cover of Rico Slade's book? This is Rico Slade's goddamn book. Rico Slade is not a body builder, an actor, or a governor. Rico Slade is an action hero. 

Rico Slade doesn't care about the political climate. Rico Slade has an advanced degree in badassery. Rico Slade's favorite food is the honey-roasted peanut. Rico Slade can rip out a throat with his bare hands. 

But Rico Slade has a problem. His arch-nemesis, Baron Mayhem, is threatening to drop a bomb on the Earth that will kill every human being except himself while leaving the world's currency intact. To save the planet, Rico Slade must journey across Hollywood to find Baron Mayhem. Unfortunately, Rico Slade's crime fighting style involves ripping out the throat of anyone who gets in his way, including grandmothers and Midwestern tourists.

As Rico Slade leaves Hollywood in ruins, the only person who can stop him from destroying the city is his Jewish psychologist, Harold Schwartzman. Until he does, Rico Slade will kill as many people as it takes to thwart Baron Mayhem's evil scheme. Rico Slade will fucking kill everyone.


Get it here: