I’m unsure why this subject popped into my head today, but I thought I’d finally put it down in my blog. More and more, we see horror books with incredibly gory or disgusting covers. Some are meant to shock or grab your attention and I get that, especially when you’re brand new and trying to be seen among the ocean of titles out there.
There used to be the issue of people not buying them because they wouldn’t be able to read them in public, for fear of everyone seeing the covers. Now, though, there are ebooks so all people see is your reader. No biggie there anymore.
But here is what bothers me:
There are a lot of great horror books out there, written by fantastic authors, and they might have some gore in them (possibly a lot of gore) but there is so much more than that. There is a gripping story, well-developed characters, and masterful storytelling to enjoy. But many people wouldn’t know because they were too disgusted by the covers to buy the book.
A publisher once told me (and I’m paraphrasing from memory) that if a reader can’t handle the cover, they shouldn’t read it, anyway, because they can’t handle what’s inside. I disagree. A gross cover is an artist’s interpretation that, once seen, you can’t “unsee.” When a person reads it, their imagination can turn down the dial, if needed, to match their level of enjoyment. Then they can still appreciate the work put into the rest of the story’s creation.
Isn’t it a common sign of amateur writing to write gore for gore’s sake? Gore in a book needs to have purpose or else it’s merely senseless shock value. In my opinion, that’s exactly what gory covers are guilty of, and worse yet, by spotlighting the book’s gore, they’re negating all the of the better qualities of the book, as mentioned above. In that one image for the reader, they’ve stripped the author’s work down to blood and guts.
The horror genre has been struggling with the stigma that it has little depth other than gore and violence for years. This only hinders progress, in my opinion.
In my last post, I gave some details behind the last incarnation of KHP Arcade. Well, I’ve been working really hard (as hard as I’m able around seizures, etc) and I finished it just in time for this weekend! Building websites comes pretty easy for me, and this is something I was really excited about, so it just sort of flowed from me. My conversion disorder certainly got in the way often, but that’s why it took all week rather than a day or so.
This time, I’ve implemented some other features like embed code under the game details, so if you want to put a favorite game on your own site, go for it! I don’t mind sharing!
I’m kicking it off with over 100 games out the gate, and I’ll be adding more as time goes, so you should see more games building up much faster than before.
Okay, I’ll stop going on about it and let you get to it. Click this to head over there:
So now, I’m going to take a breather for a bit. Today, I’m feeling like this:
Last year, I’d kicked off a project on the KHP site for the fun of it. I didn’t expect a huge reception but I wanted to offer something people could enjoy. It was a nice flash arcade site. Sure, there are plenty of them out there, but so many are loaded with viruses and popups, or you have to join a community to play and they end up being more trouble than they’re worth.
I created one that had no memberships or popups, and the only ads you saw were those that I created to promote KHP books, so there were definitely no viruses. The games had their little 10-30 second ads prior to playing but that’s how I got them for free, so I can’t argue with that.
Anyway, we had to shut it down in November, and with great reluctance on everyone’s part. The reason wasn’t for lack of interest or because I accidentally burned it down. It was because I’d built it too well, apparently. I’m not trying to blow my horn. It’s just how it happened. August reached over a million hits and the month of October brought in exactly 2,299,222 hits. When it was shut down in mid-November, we’d already had 2,035,978 hits.
That’s awesome! I couldn’t have been more thrilled by the support and interaction for something built out of love and a desire to share in the fun. However, that much traffic building up so quickly overloaded the servers. All of our other sites were going down, business and personal. Regrettably, it had to go.
Well, it’s been haunting me ever since, and with the holidays over, I’ve decided to get a private server to set it up again. I’ll implement some extra features that I was working on before the previous troubles came about, but it should otherwise be pretty similar.
The url will be a little different, as well. In fact, it will have it’s own domain. Being on its own, and on its own server with a much larger capacity for handling traffic, there is no longer a threat to the other sites should there be trouble down the road.
I’m really excited about this! I’ll have to build it from scratch again, but I have all the tools I need, saved from last year. And when I’m having rough days, I’ll be on there playing with everyone else.
I’ll keep everyone updated.
Again, I’m unsure of the source, but it looks awesome!
I’m not 100% sure of where it came from but me likey!
Today, I looked out my window to see this:
The first thing that went through my mind was, You’ll never take me alive, coppers!
But then, after they left, I knew who they were really looking for, and the culprit must have given them the slip because he was back at it again:
Our degus are really getting up there in age. The average lifespan in captivity is 6-8 years (shorter in the wild) but our girls will be 10 in March.
Well, we’re down to half of them. Willow passed away last June and last night, we lost Tara. These two were the middle-sized ones, who loved to play on the wheel the most. In fact, Tara was on the wheel more than any of them. I guess it will be a lot quieter now :(.
Buffy, the largest degu and the boss of the show, is very sad. She pushed my hand away when I tried to comfort her, but eventually she came closer and winked at me to let me know everything is okay.
Cordy, the smallest, tried to console her sister, also getting pushed away. Then she went down to where Tara was last seen to look around before moping on the wheel.
I took this picture today of Cordy looking after Buffy, who is very noticeably depressed. They’ll both be getting lots of extra TLC today:
Here are pictures that I’ve shown before but they’re worth showing again.
This is Tara on the wheel when she was only a few months old:
And even while the others were fighting over who got to play in the dust bath, Tara would sit it out to play on the wheel:
In these pictures taken last year, Tara is the one dragging the paper towel tube downstairs to chew up into nesting material. It was the best distraction for her away from that wheel, lol:
R.I.P. Tara. We’ll miss you.
There has been someone calling the house often and my mother will pick up, have trouble understanding and simply hang up. Well, this time, she handed the phone over to me.
It was a man with a thick Indian accent claiming to be with Microsoft. He said they can see my computer is overheating and he was going to help me fix that.
Now, I have the computer in front of me hooked to the big screen HDTV. It was easy enough to pull up the temperature. I said, “It’s running at 40 degrees, Celsius, which is actually on the cool end for this brand and build. You’re full of shit.”
He said, “When you go on the Internet, you will see a lot of errors because it is overheating.”
I said, “I’m online right now and Facebook looks fine. You’re a scammer and you’re not from Microsoft.”
He said, “I can prove that I’m from Microsoft. I can give you your computer’s ASIN.”
I told him, “Any hacker can get that sort of information. You’re full of shit.”
“Send me an official email from Microsoft.”
“You’re a scammer!” And I hung up.
I tried to *69 him and I checked the Caller ID – no dice. They block all of that pretty well, and the operator said I’d have to get a court order to trace it.
I did go on a live chat with Microsoft’s customer service to report the details of the incident for whatever that was worth. They confirmed it was a scammer and that they never call to try “fixing” your computer. Had I cooperated, the caller would have complete control over my computer to secretly do all sorts of nasty things under my identity, not to mention get all of my passwords and nudey movies (j/k on the latter… or am I?).
Here is a link they have with more information on phone scams: IT’S HERE!
Anyway, I just wanted to share this because if even one person reads it and is more prepared if they’re called, it’s worth it. Be safe!