Friday, September 26, 2014

Administration Q3 for 2014

There will be one more serial for 2014, which will begin next Friday and on the established update schedule thereafter- ending the week before Christmas. During this time, however, I am also writing my third novel and inquiring as to the viability of making a pitch now (as in "before the end of the year") or holding off for 2015. While you won't see anything different, consider that this may be the last year where four original stories on a weekly basis is the norm for this blog. Should the novel sell, I will refocus towards that and let this blog slide down in priority.

Readership is steady. Traffic sources, flows, and rates remain constant and consistent; reach and audience, therefore, is also consistent and constant. I am now inclined, after doing this for five years, to make the transition from hobby to professional; this is what the novel attempt is about- taking concepts and ideas first developed here and making them into a commercially-viable novel. If you've enjoyed any of what I write here, then you will like the novel and I encourage you to (a) tell your friends and (b) keep your eyes peeled as I'll use Admin posts here to keep all of you abreast on developments.

If the novel hits, then this blog's new status will be purely experimentation coupled with informational and promotional posts regarding novels, appearances, etc. I may also ask for Beta readers when I am ready to do so, and that may be as early as the end of this year.

Friday, September 19, 2014

The Reluctant Doomsayer-12

New Year's Day came. I wrote in a journal how the loss of contact with the wider world had hit me hard, and despite expecting that to happen this still hammered me something fierce. Coping with it, while keeping track of the days, was difficult. Fortunately, all of my preparations paid off and I knew that--so long as I could keep it together between my ears--I would make it to Spring without a problem. Therefore I focused my efforts on keeping myself sane and stable, which meant keeping up a routine while awaiting expected external events.

Like my angel friend stopping by one more time.

"Job's done, monkey." he said, "How does it feel to successfully prophesize the end of the world?"

"I'm not sure. It's been less than a month. All I hear on the radio now, when I hear anything at all, is a horror show. Zombies, of all things, along with people going feral and collapsing into survivor groups. This new world makes real things previously considered fantasy, and I don't know what to make of it."

He chuckled. "Honest, to the last."

"A bit morbid, aren't we? You're now far more able than I am to see what's going on. The Internet is down, likely for good. Radio is spotty at best, and most able to broadcast aren't talking good news. For those of us that made it through, we're now confronting the fact that the world we knew is gone. Even if we rebuild what we can, it's not going to be the same. Even if we recover what we lose, it's not going to be the same. That time is done, gone, and can never return. That's a heavy thing to face, and it stands to destroy many of those who survived this cataclysm."

"Do you have a plan?"

"A grand strategy to rebuild civilization into something recognizable to those that remember what was before? No. A simple strategy to build up a foundation for an enduring community, from which others can build towards a new civilization in due time? Yeah. Not a town, not even a village or a hamlet, is what I have in mind. Much smaller, within my own capabilities, is to build this place up into a sustainable farmstead. That's my plan."

"Humble at heart. Even in the face of desolation. Yet faithful."

"So, why the visit?"

"He's got a message for you."

"Hit me."

He laid a hand upon my forehead. "He blesses you, removing you from the Book of Death and ensuring you to His bosom forevermore, and shielding you from the instruments of His wrath."

I didn't know it then, but this meant the zombies. I got to be immune to being turned, and invisible to them; this also meant that I was one of the sources for the Purified Seed of Mankind.

"Oh, and He's got a new task for you, since He figured that you'd be preparing for what to do next."

"Go forth and multiply?"

He laughed. "Exactly. Don't worry about how; He's got that sorted."

And that was that. Winter passed, and in the Spring a young lady--who turned out to have been a listener--found me. My life would change again, but that's for another story.

Friday, September 12, 2014

The Reluctant Doomsayer-11

Time began to run out. I used the remaining time to square away my own situation; there was no running now, so when it hit I had to be certain that I had everything I required to handle myself in all things for an indefinite period of time, probably several years, before any viable recovery got to me. Redundant parts. Years upon years of food and medicine. More clothes. Generators, purifiers, a still, storage for fuel of varying sorts, and everything I'd need to make my own food and clothing- including the curing of leather. More guns and ammo. More components for reloading ammo. You name it, I stocked it.

I documented all of this for my audience. I implored my audience to follow my example, especially the whole "get out of the cities" thing, and I'd back that up with regular analysis of the fast-deteriorating global political and economic system. The West began targeting the East with economic sanctions and proxy wars, who in turn began economic organizing amongst themselves to cut out the U.S. Dollar. It became clear that the targets of my prophecy's flashpoint would be the primary cities in the East and South, and I soon received--and verified--intelligence from my audience that the West had an intention to break this resistance to their hegemony by means of proxy nuclear terrorism.

Prophets got to profess, so I put together the most likely scenario given the information that I had to work with and put it out online. I talked about this near to exclusivity, both on my own sites and in interviews. I laid out that the plan was for the West, using proxies, to detonate the nuclear weapons--stolen from the Russians to enhance deniability--in these ten most populated cities. The West would have the resources on hand to go in, no questions asked, to rescue and clean up the mess because these detonations would cripple the East and the South, decapitating the threat by exterminating the leadership class to a man. Nuclear war, in theory, would be prevented due to inquiries revealing the Russian origin of the weapons used and pressure to focus on global unity against terrorism would suppress any remaining dissent against Western domination of the world.

Billions would die, and billions more would die later, all so that one group of high-functioning psychopaths could stop a rival group of the same from ruining their scam and stopping their gangster (in favor of another gang's version). I knew that I could not stop it, so I implored everyone near the targeted cities to flee far from those doomed metroplexes right now and get squared away in their bug-out locations. Then I said that all of us should do that, since I already had, and I heard plenty of people contact me to say that they followed my advice.

I kept myself sane by doing the chores around the homestead, and then hunting deer and fowl to supplement my food stocks--which, thankfully, were quite full. I quickly taught myself how to process the old way what I took, and carefully conserved the casings and shells so I could reload them. I picked up a ham radio and learned how to use it, and encouraged my listeners to do the same if they could, because the odds of the Internet being able to take the incoming nuclear strikes were slim to none. Backup everything locally, shield what you can, get print versions of references you want around- all of that.

The seasons turned, Winter arrived, and the lake froze over. I soon had an ice fishing shack in place. It was there, as the sun sank below the trees, that I felt a terrible feeling run through me. I hurried back inside, locked everything down, and prepared to switch over to backup power; a quick check of my computer confirmed that more and more of the Internet came down as each hour passed. The radio waves had nothing but static outside of government chatter, and they talked only about confirmed nuclear detonations and a great wall of blue-white flame going ground-to-sky seeming to incinerate anything caught outside.

When that wave hit here, I lost all contact with the outside world. All of it. I saw the flames through the windows burn for three days straight, yet not incinerating the woods outside, or even touching my shack. The end had come. My mission was over, but it wasn't concluded just yet.

Friday, September 5, 2014

The Reluctant Doomsayer-10

I'd kept in touch with the audience as I recovered. I actively sought reliable, credible media outlets and individuals. I did more interviews as a result of this effort, and my blogging began to show both photos I took as proof for claims about myself as well as contributed (and verified) user photos sent to me and used with permission. The assassins faded from the news as newer and more exciting media creations appeared to take up time and attention, but I did not let it go- not only did I insist on pursuit about that story, I organized my audience to put this into a wider and more applicable context. The creation we made took on a life of its own; with the aid of my fellows, I again turned the media power against itself.

To my audience, I shifted to explaining the importance of being prepared for a disaster. I began by using the necessity of preparing for severe weather events, such as tornadoes or blizzards, and expanding up to hurricanes and typhoons. I linked to the many reputable sources for individual disaster preparation out there, and from there I built up to a full program of preparation coupled with argumentation for engagement with those who live near you and voluntary organization amongst one's community. It is in this transition that I found a need for something new to include, and that something was a need to locate one's identity outside oneself; this mean a philosophical and aesthetic shift, and--again, contrary to all of my predecessors--I went with the Trivium Method and the critical examination of religion and mythology.

You'd think that a prophet would be disapproved for doing this. Yet I found out, in a manner I freely admit is irrational and not subject to the rational inquiry and independent verification of the scientific method, that this was not so. You see, at this time I was out in the middle of nowhere. I was under a hill, over 15 miles from any major highway, over five miles from a county road, and out of sight of the dirt road that led to my hidden home. Furthermore, I masked my IP address to appear as if I were still in the Twin Cities, shifting it slightly every season to keep up the appearance of your usual urban activist with a death mark. I used proxy accounts to handle what I ordered online, and when I was out and about I used alternate identities. While not impossible to track me down, I made it so bothersome that only the very dedicated would bother to put in the work.

So, imagine my surprise when I found first a feral housecat and then a homeless dog coming to my door. I knew signs when I saw them, and this I took as being His response to my actions, in the form of "It's dangerous to be alone. Take these." The cat turned out to be quite the mouser, and the dog turned out to be a great hunting and guard dog once I figured out how to train it. This sounds like idle chatter, but having a pair of working animals around meant that I had need of them- and I had need of them because the very thing I warned about started to manifest.

Stupid political brinksmanship began in Southwest Asia and in the Black Sea area near Crimea. Then a sad series of political theater shows in the Far East between Japan, Taiwan, the People's Republic of China, South Korea, North Korea, and even Russia started a series of tit-for-tat moves that destablized that region. Israel got their genocide on again, hoping that they could complete wiping out the Palestinians while everyone else looked away, and that was enough for me to shift my focus again to urging my audience to move now while the moving was easy.

As the weather turned towards Winter, I got the premonition that the end would soon come. The only question remaining was whether I would go first or not.