Sunday, 23 October 2011

How Zoetrope Virtual Studio Worked for Me


How Zoetrope Virtual Studio Worked for Me


Do you know Zoetrope Virtual Studio? It’s an online writers’ workshop launched in June 2000 by Francis Ford Coppola where writers and artists can review and discuss one another’s work.


Out on a limb?

I live in Japan, so it is very difficult for me to meet other writers. There is only one writers’ conference a year, and it is more often than not held far away from where I live. So when a colleague introduced Zoetrope to me I realized that a writing community like this was just what I was looking for.

Become a member of a group

I joined the site in February 2007. Once I had reviewed five short stories I was able to submit my own short story for review. I uploaded into the system in the evening, Japan time, and by the time I got up the next morning it had been reviewed by a number of writers in the United States.

Exchange Reviews

The story remained on the review board for one month, during which time six other members read and reviewed my story. I got some good feedback, and I was able to improve my writing thanks to other members’ suggestions and advice.

Encouragement

At the time I had never submitted a story for publication. I had entered a few writing competitions, but apart from winning a book on a radio poetry competition I had not had any luck. So, when one member suggested that I send my story off to a publisher I was a little hesitant. However, she insisted my work was as good as, if not better than a lot of stories she had come across. She directed me to Duotrope and pestered me until I sent that story out.

The First Story

The story was called One Little Bird. It was about a family with a budgie that lived a very long life. It didn’t get picked up by any of the magazines I sent it out to, but the act of sending it out did give me the confidence to try again. So, I began writing and workshopping regularly.

Keep Writing

I continued to submit stories for review at the Virtual Studio, and to review other writers’ work, and in the process I found that I was writing more. I was also improving my craft. It was not only the encouragement from other writers that spurred me on, but also the fact that I was looking at other writer’s stories in a critical way. I saw the mistakes others made and began to pinpoint those mistakes in my own writing. I saw how others overcame certain problems and how they dealt with certain writing issues in different ways. It was thanks to this work-shopping experience that I was able to learn so much from that.

Community

Within the larger community I found a small community of reviewers who understood what I was trying to achieve with my writing. (And of course, some who were rude and impossible, but I generally took the rough with the smooth.) I joined a few offices, The Horror Library, Lolly’s Café, and The Flash Factory, on the site and began making friends. It was difficult though, since the conversations on the discussion boards were usually finishing by the time I was getting up in the morning, and starting just as I was going to bed. But it didn’t matter. A community with a time delay was better than no community at all.

Be Open to Suggestions

It was not until I had submitted my fifth story for review that I really began to see the benefit of workshopping. I submitted a 6,000 word short story The Infinite Piggy Bank for review. The story is about a little girl who finds a black hole in her piggy bank. Reviewers said it was a great idea spoiled by being too long and confusing in its tone. It had elements of dark fantasy and light children’s science fiction, and ultimately confused. With the help and advice of other Zoetrope workshop members I was able to see that. I pared down the word-count, chopped out the dark fantasy elements, and got my first sale. The Infinite Piggy Bank appeared in Issue 20 of Beyond Centauri.

Finding a Voice

It was this experience that helped me to discover my voice. The Infinite Piggy bank has its flaws. I am not saying it is a perfect story. What I am saying is that before workshopping that story, my writing lacked a consistency of tone, focus, and narrative voice. Zoetrope writers helped me to discover this. And for that I am extremely grateful. Since finding the black hole in that piggy bank I have been lucky to sell most of the stories I have finished.

The Future?

I continue to submit my stories for review at Zoetrope and I continue to review others stories, though not as regularly as I used to. Many people come and go from the site, and in recent years the numbers of users have dwindled. Some say that Zoetrope is coming to an end. Some lobby the SYSOPS for change. Some continue on with a positive spirit in spite of all the hot air. There have been trolls discovered on the boards, incidents involving writers abusing the system, and even the odd flame war. But there have been some high points too. The most notable was when the Zoetrope founder Francis Ford Coppola himself turned up in a discussion in the screenplays section the year before last. And best of all, there is still a hardcore group of writers who hang out there and take the craft of writing seriously.

Join us!

There are writers from all corners of the earth writing in various genres using the Virtual Studio today. They are waiting to share their community with you. Sign up today and participate in the revival of the Zoetrope Virtual Studio.

Thursday, 20 October 2011

Dark Tales of Lost Civilizations Anthology


ACCEPTANCE

I am thrilled to announce that my story "To Run a Stick Through a Fish" has been accepted into the DARK TALES OF LOST CIVILIZATIONS anthology.

The anthology is scheduled to be published next year by Dark Moon Books, in time for the World Horror Convention 2012.

My story, which is about the last days of the Ainu people of Japan, will appear alongside a bunch of established authors including the prolific genre fiction writerJoe R. Lansdale.

When I saw the call for submissions for this anthology I knew exactly the story I wanted to write. I had read numerous accounts of the plight of the Ainu people and how they were literally erased from existence by the Japanese government during my graduate studies in Japanese.

Inspired by Eric J. Guignard's vision for a collection of "dark tales of Horror, Speculative Fiction, and ... Science Fiction, relating to civilizations that are lost, or have been forgotten, or have been rediscovered, or perhaps merely spoken about in great and fearful whispers," I hit the library and spent a few days reading the ancient texts.

I was enthralled by the stories of the people of this lost civilization and the story that transpired featured a character that hopefully not only reflected the beauty and truth of the past, but adopted the misrepresentations of the present, and an uncompromising vision of the future.




Tuesday, 18 October 2011

Machine of Death



Machine of Death

I have been into the idea of this anthology project since I came across it in 2007. The website sells it as a collection of stories about people who know how they are going to die, and that is just what it is; character driven stories in a world where a machine that can predict your death exists. There are some great stories and some fantastic artwork between the covers of the book, and I have to say it is one of the best collections I have ever read. Personal favorites are Camille Alexa's Flaming Marshmallow, John Chernega's Almond, and M. Bennardo's Starvation, but there is not a single story that I didn't enjoy. If you haven't already purchased it, get on over there and buy it now!

The Idea

The idea of death prediction has been around for a long time. In the story of Oedipus the oracle predicted he would kill his father and marry his mother. In Heinlein's short story "Life-lines" Dr Hugo Pinero invents a machine that can predict when you are going to die. But what North, Bennardo and Malki! have done is to take that idea one step further, build on the myth, and make it their own by putting their own twist on the idea. And in the process it has become so much more than just an anthology. If you take a look at the website and click on the project status list on the navigation bar you will see how the idea has taken on a life of its own. There is a game, a talent show, prediction-by-mail programs, and even a photo contest. The Machine of Death idea has become a movement.

Karoshi

In 2007 I wrote a story called Karoshi. It was a story about how institutions deal with inappropriate death predictions. Karoshi is a Japanese word, which means Death from Overwork. My protagonist was a young, healthy Japanese woman called Yumi who enjoyed her job working in a government Baby Hatch, which was a place parents put their newborn babies if they had an 'inappropriate death prediction". The problem was that her employer found out her means of death and fired her. Their reason was that they did not want to be held responsible for her death. Tenacious to the end, Yumi took the local government to court and...well, you'll have to read the story yourself to find out the end. Even though it was rejected by genius editors Malki!, Bennardo, and North, it went on to find a home and win story of the year award at Strange Weird and Wonderful magazine. You'll find it under the new title A TEST OF FATE in the Fall 2008 edition.

Montagfire's Sword

In April this year I found out they were opening submissions for a second anthology. I was still reading the first anthology, and very impressed with it. Inspired, I decided that I wanted to be a part of the movement again. Even if my story was not accepted I wanted to participate in this event and broke myself out of a five month creative slump to write a story called "Montagfire's Sword" and I have to say that it was so much fun that it kickstarted my writing habit again. It's a story about a man who...no, I am not ready to share that with you. I still might have a chance in 1,958...


Here is a selection of the 1,958 titles that were submitted to the anthology. Look on the left hand side about halfway up for "The End". My story title, "Montagfire's Sword", is four lines up from that.


Wicked Bag of Fantasy Tales


I Just had my contract sent for the story I wrote for The Wicked Bag of Fantasy Tales edited by Jessica A. Weiss and M.S.Gardner from Wicked East Press. Here is a teaser of the stories that my novella will appear alongside:

A Last Hope.....Darren Gallagher



The Beast Within.....Suzanne Robb


The Tide Jewels.....Mark Lee Pearson


Other Things To Do.....Dev Jarrett


The Wizard Host.....Rachel Chipp


For The Love Of Pete.....Jen Steffen


The Times of Marlon.....Richard Jay Goldstein


In Dreams.....Hazel O'Shea


Pain's Long and Traveled Path.....Patricia Puckett


Music For The Enchanted End.....Keith Gorney



It's a bumper sized book of ten novellas weighing in with a word count of: 126,631!

My story is a modern day reimagining of the ancient Japanese creation myth found in the Kojiki and Nihongi. It features a colorful cast of characters including dragons, turtles, and a talking cat. 

Don't forget to place your order...





Sunday, 16 October 2011

NaNoWriMo: How Foolish Are You?

Old Japanese Proverb

He who attempts NaNoWriMo once is a wise man.
He who attempts it twice is a fool.


How foolish are you?

This is a problem that can easily be solved with a little pseudo-mathmatical formula.

DISTANCE x TIME = NUMERICAL FOOLISHNESS VALUE

Let's start with DISTANCE:

Mount Fuji is 3,776 (meters high)

To climb it twice would take it to 3,776 x 2 = 7,552

A NaNoWriMo novel is 50,000 (words long)

To attempt it twice would take it to 100,000

100,000 ÷ 7,552 = 13.24

This means it is 13.24 times more foolish to attempt NaNoWriMo than it is to climb Mount Fuji.

But how about you? It is important to include the number of additional attempts YOU have made into the equation. For example is you have 2 additional attempts (including the present one) multiply 13.24 by the power of two.

13.24² = 175.337995

It does not end there. We have to bring TIME into the equation. It takes about 8 hours to climb Mount Fuji as opposed to 24 (hours a day--yes, ask any writer, it does occupy that amount of time!) multiplied by 30 (days in November)

Let's put a numerical value on the TIME you have to put into your writing.

24 (hours in a day) x (30 days x 4 attempts) (actual writing time) = 2,880

2,880 - 16 (actual climbing time) = 2,864


DISTANCE x TIME = NUMERICAL FOOLISHNESS VALUE

175.337995 x 2,864 = 502,168.003

SO THERE IT IS. THE PROOF THAT I AM 502,168.003 TIMES THE FOOL FOR ATTEMPTING NANOWRIMO FOR THE FOURTH TIME!

What is your Numerical Foolishness Value???




Note: I make no claims to being a mathematician. This is just a bit of fun. If you can come up with a better one, I challenge you!











Saturday, 15 October 2011

Why Doing NaNoWriMo is Like a Trip to the Moon


NaNoWriMo 2011 #2

Preparation Tips

Why Doing NaNoWriMo is Like a Trip to the Moon.

By

Mark Lee Pearson

Look at the moon. 2000 miles across, 4.5 billion years old, and it’s mere existence affecting the tides of the earth. Isn’t it amazing?

Your first task is to tell everyone that is where you are going to be during the month of November. That way you will not be invited to any social activities that will eat up your writing time. Also you’ll acquire a bunch of friends willing to cheer a crazy astronaut on. Your significant other will also need to know why you’ll appear to be defying gravity for the entire month of November.

Your second task is to go to bed. Get off the Internet and crawl under your duvet. Yes, now! Or as soon as you’ve finished reading this. You don’t go on a 250,000-mile word journey without preparation. You will need to conserve energy for that moonwalk.

Good night’s sleep? Okay, your next step is to plot the moon’s orbit. One sidereal month is 27.3 days. Create a 27.3-day plan. This will consist of an outline of 27.3 chapters of 1800 words each. Each chapter plan will be a sentence or two stating where you lift-off and where you plan to land—in other words a pay off. That is just like a 27.3 sentence summary of your story. The plan is to complete a 27.3-chapter orbit novel; one chapter a day for 27.3 days, with 2.7 days left open for a couple of blue moon events.

Done that? Right, now it’s time to decide who’s going to be the one to set foot on the moon? Is it Neil or is it Buzz that’ll be your protagonist? Focus on one character’s point-of-view. The more points-of-view you have the more complicated your story gets, so keep it simple so you can take the easiest possible route from start to finish. So, it’s Buzz? Right then, Niel can be your antagonist. You’ll need another character too. Someone who will help your protagonist. How about Sting?

Right, we have a crew. It is almost time to prepare for blast off. The date is set. On 1st November you’ll get up one hour earlier than usual and take 15 minutes to write an outline of the chapter you plan to write.

Yes, that’s right, an outline. If you’ve got a map of the stars you’ll easily be able to find the constellation you are looking for.

The outline will be based on your 1-sentence summary for that day. You will need a starting point and an ending point. You will need to know the characters that will feature in that chapter and all of their motivations. Yes, ALL! Characters without motivations should be jettisoned. You also need to know what you want each one of them to achieve by the end of that chapter. In effect you need to ask yourself, “What is today’s pay off?”

You are ready to blast off! With that pay-off in mind start writing at full acceleration. Fully prepared you should get about 600 words done in 45 minutes. At the 600 word mark leave your characters half way through a sentence and…

…go to work/school/drop the kids off at kindergarten. While doing that, think about your day’s plan and formulate a dialogue incorporating lots of conflict. Ideally the dialogue will encapsulate what you are trying to achieve with today’s chapter. Like a kind of microcosm of the whole. Jot it down if you have a chance. Here’s one I prepared earlier,

“One small step for a man—” said Neil, opening the hatch.

“No,” said Sting, “Wait! Giant steps are what you take walking on the moon.”

Just then, Buzz appeared with an ice pick. “You are both wrong,” he said. “That giant leap will be mine, all mine!”

Arrive at work 30 minutes early and, referring to your dialogue and your day’s plan write 300 words with before anyone else arrives. Then write 300 words on your lunch break. Stay behind and write 300 more words before you go home. You have completed 1500 words.

At home switch off the Internet, TV, PlayStation II…and figure out what you are going to do with all this time in space. Don’t forget to look around you at the stars and enjoy the view of earth. You will most certainly find something to inspire another 300 words...or more.

It takes about two days to get from the Earth to the moon. But once you get there the gravity is one sixth of what it is here on earth, you’ll take giant steps, you’ll feel lighter, and more powerful, almost superhuman. And the view from up there is stunning. NaNoWriMo: enjoy the trip, but keep the momentum.

Tuesday, 11 October 2011

NaNoWriMo: My Experience

Novel Writing and Nanowrimo
by
Mark Lee Pearson

November is Nanowrimo. National Novel Writing Month. Write a 50,000 word novel in 30 days along with a quarter of a million other people on the planet (Yes, I know it should be International Novel Writing Month). I thought I would share with you my Nanowrimo novel writing experience to date.

Once Upon a Time

I’d had a little novel-writing experience before my first attempt at Nanowrimo. I finished one 50,000 word short novel about a Monster Lighthouse Keeper back in 1993 and I also wrote a 60,000 word middle-grade fantasy tale in 2005 about a boy who shrunk to the size of an anchovy and got washed down the plug hole of his bath into a magical sewer.

I doubt either of these will ever see the light of day. I put both stories down to be a part of the learning process, 110,000 words of the necessary 1 million words that you have to write before you are good enough to sell anything.

50,000 words in a month

Anyway in 2008 and I was ready to try again. I’d joined Zoetrope Virtual Studio and started workshopping my short stories. That had given me the confidence to move forward and submit to publishers and as a result I’d had a couple of shorts published in semi-pro magazines. I’d read a couple of How-To-Write-A-Novel books and I was really inspired to make a start on something. 


It was October. I remember Googling the key words How to write a novel and discovering nanowrimo was about to start. Talk about serendipity, I thought. Even though I had two little kids that demanded a lot of my time, I had a very supportive wife; and so on November 1st 2008 I began the novel that would change it all.

No Plot No (Big) Problem

I’d just sold a story to Space and Time Magazine called Hideki Desu. It was about a boy who traveled the Universe by hitching rides on people’s dreams. I wanted to see what I could do with this strange character in a parallel Tokyo over the space of a whole novel. I had a character, a setting and a concept. That was it. No plot no problem, said Chris Baty, the founder of Nanowrimo. 


So, I started writing my novel on the 1st November 2008. Inspired by the pep talks I received by e-mail, I wrote 30,000 words. And then I hit a wall. I was left standing by all those online novelists. And I left Hideki standing on the Tokyo Bay getting ready to jump in. He is still standing there today. I have no idea why. The whole idea of No Plot No Problem was not working for me. I may return to Hideki when I figure out what his motivation is.

Redux: Forward Planning

I stopped writing novels and went back to short stories. From short stories I found I could get a more instant gratification from my writing. I could write a story, polish it and have it sent out to a publisher for consideration in one or two weeks. What’s more I was beginning to have a few more sales and some interest from respectable magazines in the field. However, I was still intent on writing that novel. You know, the one that’s going to make you a Bestselling Novelist? 


I’d had a short story out in the slush piles for about a year about a boy who attracts whales with his voice. It was getting a lot of interest, but no bites. I thought it was the best thing I had written to date and I wanted to explore the characters more thoroughly, so I wrote out a short plan of how I wanted the story to develop. So, when November came around again I threw myself straight back in. This time I had a setting, a bunch of characters, an idea, and an idea for a plot. I couldn’t fail.

Nanowrimo Winner?




The story started well, I had a hook, the characters’ motivations were acting against one another. I had a plot roadmap, which amounted to fifty chapters with one sentence hook for each chapter. I started writing on the first day of November, but soon found that it was really difficult to keep writing 1600 words a day. I was teaching at elementary school and finding I was coming home burned out from lessons and dodgeball. I would catch up at the weekends, but by the third week I was far behind. 


On the last day I remembered what Mur Lafferty had said in her I Should Be Writing podcast; that it was okay to suck. So I wrote 8,000 words of 100% pure unintelligible suck to get me to the finish line. I put the novel aside. I had mixed feelings. Yes, I had completed a 50,000 word novel in the allotted time. Yes, I was now officially recognized as a Nanowrimo winner. But at what cost?


2010: Third Time Lucky

I shut down my computer and wrote nothing for the first nine months of 2010. I wasn’t a writer anymore. I was a failure. Then in September of that year I had an email from a guy called Roque Ruiz at Cloudberry Records who wanted to interview me about my experience of establishing an independent record label in the 1980s. I answered his questions the best I could and found that there was a story there. Roque told me that there was still interest in Ambition Records. I thought it might be an idea to write the story of Ambition. So in November 2010, thanks to Roque’s encouragement, I embarked on my third attempt at Nanowrimo.

This time I was determined to make a go of it. I knew the story and the characters. It was my story. My autobiography. I couldn’t fail. One thing I had learned from my failures was that doing it alone, even though there are many nanowrimers doing it too, was hard. I decided to go public. I opened my office on Zoetrope and posted inspirational articles and pictures for myself as well as the other members of the office. I updated my word-count on my blog, on Facebook, and on Twitter. I challenged other writers to reach the goal before I did. I built a little community around myself. I told everyone, so I had to finish.

The social experience was amazing. I got encouragement from all different areas of my life. And I flew past the goal of 50,000 words on day 26 of nanowrimo. I went on to complete the story at 60,000 words.




I was happy with the outcome, 60,000 words closer to the required million! But I was burned out. I left the story on my hard drive, stopped writing again, and went to play with my kids.

2011

In April 2011 I discovered the Machine of Death Anthology was putting out another call fro submissions for another anthology. I started writing again. I wanted to get in that anthology. I tried and failed the first time. I saw the amount of interest it kicked up on the Twitter and I wanted to be a part of a fantastic book. The characters in the story were the same characters I had worked on with my nanowrimo 2009 novel. 


MOD2 rebooted my interest in writing. I wrote another novella, The Tide Jewels, which will be published later this year at Wicked East Press, and two more short stories, which are now patiently waiting for the attention of a couple of discerning professional magazine editors.

But those characters were still drawing my attention. I knew I had to go back to them. So In August I went back to the novel. I reshaped and replotted it. I cut out 10,000 words of crap, leaving me with a meager 40,000 words. Then in 2 months I rewrote the entire story from scratch ending up with 65,000 words.

It is October and I have now just finished my second editing pass on my Nanowrimo 2009 novel: Whaling the Multiverse. I am burning to send it out, but I still need to give it another few editing passes to iron out some of the flaws I can still see. I am about to put it away for another month while I try Nanowrimo for the fourth time. When that is finished I will not give up writing. I will be ready with my red pen!

November 2011

November is approaching. This time I want to write a story that my kids will read and say, "Hey Dad, I love science fiction!" So I am going to write a middle grade time travel tale. I’ll be ready at the start line with my plan to strike another 50,000 words more off that required one million. See you on the first of November.

Sunday, 9 October 2011

What Can Evel Knievel Teach Us About Writing?






On Being a Daredevil
by
Mark Lee Pearson


“Where there is little risk, there is little reward.”



When I was a kid in the 1970s, I wanted to be like the greatest bike rider of all time, Evel Knievel.


From the time I was eight years old until I was about twelve I spent all my free time practicing jumps over my little brother as he lay in the road, standing on the saddle as I freewheeled down busy high streets, bunny hopping up and down kerbs, and trying out every trick in the book.

Now, luckily for me my parents could only afford to buy me a Raleigh Chopper. The injuries I sustained were minimal. If eight-year old me had been in charge of a Harley Davidson like the great daredevil himself, it wouldn't have been just broken bones and mashed up organs, I would definitely have ended up on a slab. (Along with my fearless little brother...)





The point I am trying to make here is that I threw every little piece of my energy into becoming Evel Knievel. The great daredevil himself said,"Where there is little risk, there is little reward." When I was on my bike, I believed with all my heart that I was him. And little by little I saw my skill as a cyclist improve with each trick I mastered. By the time I was twelve I was invincible on a Raleigh Chopper!



“You come to a point in your life when you really don't care what people think about you, you just care what you think about yourself.



Evel Knievel


Of course, I gave up on my pre-pubescent daredevil dream of being Evel Knievel years ago. Though emulating the great was an important stage in my growth, I know now that it is important to explore my own individual strengths in order to achieve a measure of greatness.

I am a writer now and I am grateful for the lesson that Evel Knievel taught me when I was eight.

I never gave up on that daredevil spirit. I kept taking risks with everything I put my hand to. I became a disc jockey, I formed a record company, I gave up a job in engineering to study philosophy, I studied abroad, I moved to Japan...


I became a writer.


Just as I got back on my Raleigh Chopper every time I fell off--whatever injury I sustained--I now keep submitting my fiction to publishers and magazines, because I believe with all my heart that I have what it takes to be a great writer.

Of course, the rejections pile up. But, you know what? It doesn't matter. It doesn't matter because I can sleep at night knowing that I am doing my best to achieve a measure of greatness.

What am I doing?

1) Writing every day.
2) Finishing what I write.
3) Submitting what I write.

I listen to the advice of others and try to improve my craft. I listen to feedback and try to incorporate it into my stories without compromising my ideas. I take a rejection as a sign of success. At least I can say I was daring enough to try.

I hope you are daring enough to try too.


Tuesday, 4 October 2011

On Discovery vs Outlining


A Tribute to The Dead Robots' Society
http://deadrobotssociety.com/



Road Map to Memphis Hell
by
Mark Lee Pearson


There was once a scientist called Kaiser, who built two robots. She fitted them both with the exact same model of positronic brain. She called one J-Max and the other T-Mix. The two robots were exactly like humans in every respect. They could eat and drink, they could think and feel, and they even had the capability to die.


As an experiment Doctor Kaiser cultured two positronic viruses to infect the positronic brains. She called the viruses The O virus and the P virus--after the two philosophers Bertrand Outliner and Ludwig Pantser--respectively. She then infected one brain with the O Virus and one with the P Virus.


The scientist then set both robots the same task. To plan a vacation for himself. Robot J-Max planned to drive to Memphis. Robot T-Mix decided on a dice-throw to take a plane to the North. He wasn't sure where, he would just figure out the route as he went along.


Robot J-Max purchased a map and a navi for his automobile. He typed his route into routefinder.com and chose the easiest way to get there. Then he searched the internet for a decent steak house and a comfortable motel. He even sought out the cheapest gas stations en route. While surfing the Internet he found by chance there was an all night showing of Lord of the Rings in the local theatre. J-Max rubbed his metallic hands together in glee and booked tickets.


When T-Mix saw J-Max writing out his plan in the greatest detail he scoffed at him, saying, "I'm just gonna get on the plane and see where it takes me. It's more exciting that way."


Doctor Kaiser waved goodbye to them on Saturday morning and they both set off.


J-Max drove carefully and at a steady speed all the way to Memphis. He arrived after lunch and spent the entire afternoon sightseeing and enjoying the ambience of The King's house. Then he treated himself to a steak house meal and rounded off the evening at the drive-in movie theatre watching the Lord of the Rings Trilogy back to back. It was a perfect holiday, thought Robot J-Max.


Robot T-Mix was kidnapped by a character in a green hat on the way to the airport. She said her name was Eliyanna and that she was on the trail of a Ripper Robot, but she was really a bounty hunting drummer called Ryan in disguise. This was gonna be some holiday, thought T-Mix as they drove south with him tied up and gagged in the trunk of her BMW.


Robot J-Max returned on time. He now makes a living writing interminable travelogues and selling them online to pre-paying customers.


Doctor Kaiser has recently traced Robot T-Mix to a brothel on a minor planet in the  70 Virginis System in the year 1969. The bounty hunter sold him as sex slave to a Time Traveling minx from Erotica V, and he still lives out there taking each day as it comes.


Doctor Kaiser and Robot J-Max are planning a way to free him from the clutches of the evil tentacle queen.


UPDATE:


The last we heard Doctor Kaiser was working on a way to combine the two viruses.