ROWstatic 3-11

Hi everyone! Well, this was an entirely dull week – nothing going on – wait, you know better. *smile* Actually, this was a superb week and I totally got my socks knocked off yesterday with a surprise commenter that I’ll share with all of you in a minute. One goal is completed and being reset, another is a tenth of a step from coming back and I have a review of a fun little book for you.

First up – the review – because I love suspense.

Review of Mission of Gravity by Hal Clement

This might be the oldest fiction I’ve read to date, 1953 original print, but it was such a fun and powerful story that I couldn’t put it down and finished it in two days. Mesklin is a dangerous world for humans, seas of liquid methane, gravity rising to 700 times that of Earth on the poles – add to this a small problem, the humans lost an incredibly expensive and pivotal scientific probe on the pole of the planet with no way to retrieve it. Enter Barlennan, merchant, pirate, opportunist and 15 inches of raw sentient alien caterpillar and his crew.

Clement follows along as the humans guide Barlennan and his intrepid crew on a cross planet ride that showcases not only the bizarre differences of an alien world but also the similarities. Mission of Gravity is a prime lesson in how sometimes the smallest of us, with determination and drive, can resolve problems beyond the capability of greater beings by use of tenacious will. Never underestimate a caterpillar that dreams of being a butterfly.

Mission of Gravity is an exceptional tale and earns its laurels, in my opinion – well worth the read if you’re looking for a fun tale that is both compelling and full of entertaining surprises.

And now – my surprise commenter.

Last week I reviewed the greatest a little craft book called the Writer’s Journey by Chris Vogler. You never know who might be reading your posts – you never know who just might decide to pop in – and yes folks, Chris Vogler himself popped by yesterday and dropped us a comment:

From Chris Vogler:

Chris Vogler

“Gene — Thanks for the incandescently glowing review of my humble little book. I wrote it just for you! I’m just so thrilled when people “get” it, especially the part about it being “an essay on the human experience.” That came as a surprise to me when I started putting the book together. It sounds like you’ve fully absorbed that as well as what I hope are useful concepts and techniques for writers. I was touched by the positive feedback from your sizable following. I’m still exploring the Journey, and have put my latest findings into another book, “MEMO FROM THE STORY DEPT.: Secrets of Structure and Character”, co-written with my story analyst colleague, Columbia film professor David McKenna. I dug a little deeper into the structure of fairy tales, the early development of character writing in Aristotle’s time, and what we can learn from the venerable traditions of vaudeville. So, best wishes with your own explorations and many thanks for sharing what you’re finding with your fellow writers!

Chris Vogler
Author of “The Writer’s Journey”

Needless to say I was stunned speechless thrilled and ordered my copy of Memo From The Story Dept. this morning. By the way, notice “I was touched by the positive feedback from your sizable following” – that’s YOU! *smile* Love you all – thanks for taking the time to stop by, comment and offer support – I’m honored to be on this journey with every one of you.

And now, this week’s update.

-Write 7k of fiction per week. Yes. Things are going so well on this, testing scenes, world-building, character building, etc., that I am hoping to bring back the WWBC goal over the course of this week. I’ll make it official next Sunday (if all goes according to plan) and my lovely mentor, Donna Newton, gives me the thumbs up. Stay tuned.

-30 minutes of treadmill 5 days a week. Okay, I’m still stuck at four on this one. I am doing my best to get to five but the busy nature of my weeks is offering more resistance then expected. I’ll keep pressing on this goal, no worries because I’m still getting a good amount of exercise each week.

-Read two fiction and two craft books by March 21. Made it 12 days early, which means I’m bringing in a new group of four. This reset will be: Read one craft, one non-fiction and two fiction books by April 30. The books: Danse Macabre by Stephen King (counting this as craft), The Ancient Mediterranean by Michael Grant (non-fiction), An Alien Heat by Michael Moorcock and The Eight by Katherine Neville. I’ve already started Danse Macabre – King is always a fantastic read.

-Maintain sponsor duties. I visited 28 of you last week. Little reminder to be sure to include your update on the Linky Tools listing so other ROWers can stop by and offer their support.

Go after those goals, my friends. Make every day count – Carpe Diem.

Peaceful Journeys!

About Gene Lempp

Gene Lempp is a writer blending elements of alternate history, the paranormal, fantasy, science fiction and horror for dark and delicious fun. He unearths stories by digging into history, archeology, myth and fable in his Designing from Bones blog series. “Only the moment is eternal and in a moment, everything will change,” sums the heart of his philosophy. You can find Gene at his Blog, Twitter, Facebook, Goodreads, WANATribe, Google+, Pinterest and StumbleUpon.
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28 Responses to ROWstatic 3-11

  1. Kerry Meacham says:

    That’s awesome,Gene. For both your goals and Chris Vogler stopping by. You work your tail off on your following, so here’s to you ROWbro. ~clink~

  2. Just when you think your week has been mundane, the teacher gives you an A. Your hard work and diligence pays off in the most surprising ways. Congrats!

  3. Ruth Nestvold says:

    All kinds of wonderful news, Gene! And feedback like that is really great. 🙂

    The Hal Clement books sounds like great fun, I’ll have to look it up. Congrats on keeping up on your amazing word count goals, and have a great week. 🙂

  4. LauraDrake says:

    Wow, you’re BIG time, Gene! Course, you were always Big Time with us!

  5. Wow, Gene, you have had a great week. Congratulations. You rock!

  6. Em says:

    How exciting! You are right, you never know who is out there reading you!

    Great job on your goals and glad things are going well. Have a great week! 🙂

    • Gene Lempp says:

      Kerry: Thanks, ROWbro ~clink~

      Mary Jo: Thank you 🙂

      Ruth: The Hal Clement book has a unique (or at least very rare) perspective that adds an interesting quality to the adventure. Definite good read. And yes, feedback like Chris left is priceless.

      Laura: Ah, thanks Laura. Gave me a big smile 😀

      Prudence: Thanks 🙂

      Em: Truly – I was a bit surprised myself, now if I just bait Brad Pitt here with my Oetzi piece…thanks, Em 🙂

  7. I had the same shocking thrill when Chris Vogler stopped by my blog…that makes him beyond cool in my book 🙂 And yeah, that Memo book just went on my to-buy list.

    Fantastic week Gene! Wishing you another one this week.

  8. Marcia says:

    I saw that comment he left! How cool is that?! It’s such a treat when the folks you think are too big or too busy to notice us, actually take the time to stop in and say thanks! Very impressive.
    Your week was awesome!Love that you can accomplish so much. Have another great week ahead!
    (oh, I know I’m one that needs reminding to link in…just did that about an hour ago–slept in today 😛 )

  9. That is soo cool Gene having Chris Vogler visit your site and leaving a comment no less! You must have been jumping up and down! He is teaching a seminar with James Scott Bell and Donald Maass this autumn. Can you imagine learning from all three of those guys over a four day period? It makes my heart flutter. And I am so impressed about how much you are getting done on your WIP Gene. Do you sleep? Glad you had a good week. 🙂

  10. Wow Gene! What an honor!! Okay, I’ll try and calm down here a little bit – don’t want to be shouting all hysterical on your own blog, sheesh, lol. Seriously though, how cool is that?

    Congrats on your accomplishments this week – you make a fine sponsor – and it’s super appreciated when you stop by because I know you have so much on your plate as it is. Thanks for taking the time to root others on the way you do.


  11. Stacy Green says:

    Congrats on Chris’s visit! That’s got to be a great feeling. Excellent job this week, as always, and thanks for the book review. Keep up the great work.

  12. Sounds like you had a great week! Someday we will all be reviewing your book. 🙂

  13. Ali Dent says:

    I happy for you, Gene. Mr. Volger stopping by is certainly affirmation for you and for him. You are a great support to others. I’m glad something so special happened to you.

    How do you get so much read? Four books in a couple of weeks. When do you read?

    • Gene Lempp says:

      Raelyn: Orders “Memo” this morning and already received shipping confirmation – apparently I’m meant to read it. Too cool that Chris stopped by your site as well. Awesome stuff 🙂

      Marcia: You know I put it there just for you *grin*. Took me two hours to figure out what time it was this morning, so I slept in without knowing it 🙂

      Karen: It is rumored that I sleep – I will not confirm nor deny those rumors. I would love to be at that seminar – four days of three of the greats, wow! Doubt it is possible with my current schedule but will have to check into it. Thanks for the heads up 🙂

      Marie: LOL, feel free to shout, jump, sing, whatever here – its all good. Thanks for the compliment and the support 🙂

      Stacy: Thanks 😀

      Billie: Hm, maybe. Trust me I am working on fulfilling that one 🙂

      Ali: When do I read – I keep the book I’m reading with me all the time. I read a page here and there through part of the day, read on the treadmill, read in the bathroom, read while I’m waiting to pick up kids from school or practices, read every chance I get. My “actual” goal is 30 pages a day, but I usually go over that by quite a bit (although some days I don’t make even half of that). Stephen King gave me the idea – blame him 😀

  14. LOVE the comment from Mr. Vogler – that is so cool and I can only imagine how surprised and touched you were that he swung by and shared. Sooo cool!!
    GREAT week with your goals. Here’s to finishing strong Gene – GREAT work and inspiration!

  15. Jenny Hansen says:

    That’s what I’m talking about!! I freaking love social media!

    I told you he is the nicest, nicest man. (Same thing I think about you, dude…LOL). I’m so thrilled that he stopped by – I just know you were pinching yourself all week. He’s just as great live and I can’t wait to hear your feedback on his next book. 🙂

  16. What a great week. Always love it when an author stops by and thanks you for a review. I definitely need to read his book. It’s about the 5th time I’ve come across Joseph Campbell and the Hero’s Journey. The universe is trying to tell me something. Love your selection of books to read. Can’t go wrong with any of them.

  17. amyshojai says:

    Wow, kewl beans! I’m a fan–of both you AND Mr. Vogler (have his book highlighted & dog-eared (pun intended).

  18. Awesome week – good on you for setting goals and sticking to them. That Hal Clement book is one my favourites, I’ve got the Del paperback edition. I must dig it out again, but when I last read it, the ideas hadn’t dated – really for the reasons you’ve nailed in your review.

    Matthew Wright

  19. That’s so cool that the author stopped by!!! Blogs are a useful little tool eh? (The Canadian-ness is coming out today). Anyways, great week. 7,000 is a number I’ll have to work up to. Love the ROW80 crew. They always leave such inspiring comments and we make each other look good in front of potential readers. 🙂 lol.

  20. Still rocking the ROW, I see! Glad you’re doing so well!
    Have a great week, Gene 😉

  21. alberta says:

    such a nice suprise for you – well deserved – I ordered the book on your say so and it arrived this week now awaiting my attention:)

    your goals are progressing well – so good week all round I’d say

  22. Julie Glover says:

    How cool of Vogler! Great ROW80 progress, Gene!

    • Gene Lempp says:

      Natalie: Yep – I ran through the house telling my kids who all got that totally blank “OMG my Dad just lost it and where do I hide” look. Try to give them that everyday anyway, but at least I had a good reason this time 😀

      Jen: Yeppers, love social media and I could tell from reading his book that Chris is an excellent guy – just got the vibe 🙂

      Robin: Listen to the Universe and yes, it is ultra-cool when an author takes a moment to stop in and say thanks 🙂

      Amy: Awww, thanks! Think the world of you as well 🙂

      Matthew: The Clement book is a rare and unique treasure that uses a “same but very different” approach to Sci-fi. A must read for anyone that loves the genre or just plain loves a good story.

      Nicole: Blogs are indeed useful and exciting at times. Eh *grins*

      Juliana: Thanks!

      Alberta: You’re gonna love Writer’s Journey, somehow I think it is right in line with the way you already write and think. Thanks for the support 🙂

      Julie: Yep, super awesome!

  23. Wow! I love the Writer’s Journey. I’m star-struck! How awesome 🙂 Great work on your goals too. You reminded me that I need to catch up with my craft reading as well. Onward and upward!

  24. Tia Bach says:

    Glad I’m finally getting around to this. WOW! It is a good reminder that you never know who is reading your post. That’s definitely a moment for your future biography. 😉 Thanks for sharing your great week with us!

  25. Pingback: Worldbuilding: missions of gravity « M J Wright

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