Winter Interlude III: M Strikes Back

Have you noticed the Star Wars theme? And I'm back with more...

26 Things About Me

K — Killed someone? Do you really think I’d say if I had? That having been said, no, I’ve never killed anyone. I hope you believe me.

L — Last time I cried. I think it's important to cry. It reduces anxiety, activates the parasympathetic nervous system, and improves the immune system. When I was really young, I had plenty of family members tell me that "boys don't cry," which is quite possibly the most harmful thing one can say to a boy. If you do that, don't. Don't ever.

As for me, the last time I cried was about a month ago. It was amazing and cathartic. I also happily admit that I cried at the beginning of Up. I'm not a monster.

M — Middle name. Francis. I would include it in my pseudonym, but it didn't test well with audiences. Or it didn't test well with Adrean, and I trust her judgment. When I started writing as an amateur, my pseudonym was Jonathan Francis. I missed my last name, and was already taken by someone who hasn't done anything with the website. I think it turned out well; if you Google my name, the first two pages are jam-packed full of entries all referencing me.

Pseudonyms are all about marketing in the end.

N — Number of states visited. I had to pull out a map of the U.S. to work this one out. Let's see: Florida, Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, Arkansas, Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas, Missouri, Tennessee, Kentucky, South Carolina, North Carolina, Virginia, West Virginia, Maryland, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, New York...maybe Ohio? I'm not gonna count it. Twenty states in total. That's two-fifths of the country, or 40% of the states. I'm impressed.

Why didn't we do countries, though? The world is so much wider than the United States! My mom's told me that I visited Canada when I was very little. I can't be sure, so I won't count it. I have visited Colombia, Venezuela, Mexico, the Bahamas, Costa Rica, France, Switzerland, Germany, Liechtenstein, Austria, Spain, and Morocco. I was within a mountain crossing of Italy, but I never crossed the border. That's thirteen countries, including the U.S.

O — One wish. To continue to develop a healthy lifestyle that'll make my transition into middle age as delightful as possible. I know, I'm only 32, but it's important to be healthy now so that things aren't awful in my 50s and 60s. I'm consistently happy about being told I look about ten years younger than I am. I wanna keep the compliments coming as much as I can.

Oh, yeah. And there's physical health. A pretty face isn't everything.

I love everything about your work, Chuck Palahniuk! </fanboy>

I love everything about your work, Chuck Palahniuk! </fanboy>

P — Pen name. Of course. It's Jack Burgos. Granted, Burgos is also my last name and Jack is my nickname, so there's not much I'm hiding. I picked my pseudonym so that it was short and easy to pronounce. Some people aren't sure how to pronounce Burgos, though, so it's "burr"—like those annoying little fruits that stick to your socks or shoes with sharp bristles that hurt when they prick you—and "gōs," which sounds a lot like "ghost" without the "t." The "s" is hard.

Now if only Chuck Palahniuk would take some time to help us figure out how to pronounce his last name, that would be great.

It's Finally Here

Okay. It's only on Kindle for now, but that's still amazing. Beyond the Nightlight is the first book published by Adrean Messmer, although all we Crows had a part in editing the pieces that were submitted. It's our first official publication with authors other than ourselves. We had so many submissions, and many of them were so great that we decided we had to keep them--and move them to other anthologies that are still upcoming.

I don't know when it comes out on paperback, but the paperback versions usually get a little delayed. When it does come out in paperback, I'll post a link to it on my Publications page. Shannon and I both have stories in this anthology: this time only one each. Mine is called "The In-Between Places," so look for it and feel free to tell me what you think.

Thanks to all the contributors and to my fellow Crows for making this all happen. There's tons more coming up soon, so keep your eyes open for new news!

A Word and a Square

I always wonder what life holds for my websites. First, there was Burgos Online. Then Burgosian Innovations, JoVo Nexus, and finally we've come to this. Social networking has made it practically impossible to hide online--not that I was trying very hard since I used my last name for the first two sites I ever made. JoVo Nexus came to be because, at some point, I actually had a bunch of people posting and doing stuff on my site. We had a radio station, a comic (sometimes several), the works.

Eventually, I came to see my site as a reservoir of things I'd made. I guess, to some extent, I never wanted to give up on JoVo Nexus because it was my online home. Still. I haven't done anything with it in forever, and keeping up with a personal blog and an author site is absurd. I can barely do one well enough, and it's this--the author site--that I want to really keep up with. So JoVo Nexus is going away. Instead, there will be this.

Oh, I'll be keeping the domain. This site will be accessible from both and Call it nostalgia.

Oh, right. The title of this post. You'll notice the site has changed somewhat. I decided that, given my need to focus on things other than my website and keeping it running without constant updates and faulty software, I'm gonna go ahead and change things around so that they're easier to maintain. Squarespace is promoted in almost any podcast I listen to. It's a good platform. Simpler than what I'm used to, but I don't have the time for constant maintenance. As I told the president of A Murder of Storytellers LLC, I'm not a staff. I am a single staff member: not enough to maintain a site 24/7. Thankfully, Squarespace is. I get to be the webmaster without having to stay up at all hours.

And, if this works out, Murder will be moving to Squarespace with me. That's a pretty cool deal. But we'll see how it works out for me first. So far, I like Squarespace, so this is all looking very promising.

Murder and Deadlines

A Murder of Storytellers now has a new site, and has officially become a publishing company. We never really expected that to happen, but it’s pretty amazing news. Consequently, all we “Murderers” have become editors. Our first open submission anthology is called Beyond the Nightlight, a collection of prose works focused on childlike and child-related terrors. We’ve already received some great submissions, but we hope to receive more, so if you’re a writer, get to submitting. We want to see your work.

One of the joys of editing is getting to see work before it’s published. I’m currently reading a novel that we hope to publish by next year. I won’t say anymore about that because it’s a secret. Also, it’s not my work, and I’d need permission from the author to talk about it. And we haven’t worked out a contract yet. You know, all the little things.

Navigator is going slowly but surely. Class and an exceptional amount of work is keeping me quite busy. But my new boss has given me a deadline for the first episode of the series, Belying Pacific. I hope it comes out by October of this year, and my goal is to publish a new episode once every three months. My novel, Phyrric, may have to wait until I’m done with school and under supervision for my licensure as a professional counselor.

Finally, I made it to 31. Now I’m really and truly in my thirties. It’s time to get moving on these writing goals. Time’s a wastin’.

Beyond the Nightlight Call for Submissions

Passing on the good news:

We had so much fun putting together Happy Days, Sweetheart, we’ve decided to do it again. But this time, we’re opening up submissions to everyone. We’ve got the awesome Purps Percival working on a cover for us and a release date set for late this year. Check out the guidelines, get writing, and get submitting! Oh, and tell all your friends. We want your souls. I mean stories.