Happy Buy-Whatever-You-Want-We-Ain’t-Judging Wednesday!

You’ve survived Black Friday, Buy-Local Saturday, Cyber Monday, and Giving Tuesday– congrats! You’ve safely made it to Buy-Yourself-Something-Without-Feeling-Like-You-Need-to-Justify-It-to-Anyone-‘Cause-It’s-Your-Damn-Money-and-You-Earned-It-DAMMIT! Wednesday. You’ve been a good enough boy or girl all year. You didn’t stab anyone over the turkey, tofurky, or turdogducken this year. You didn’t riot at Best Buy in order to snatch the last cut-rate flat-panel TV from the frail hands of a palsied child. You didn’t systematically destroy the solvency of the middle class while larding corporate profits to an all-time high, or gut any semblance of regulation on corporate political spending, extra-Constitutionally track and analyze the communications of of hundreds of thousands–if not millions–of law-abiding US citizens.
You deserve a tiny little something extra, a tiny treat that you don’t have to justify to another living soul: A fancy cup o’ coffee, an afternoon cookie, a new game for your phone, a couple MP3s, or perhaps . . .

The New Guys Always Work Overtime: An award winning time-portal short (first published in Asimov’s last year). Taylor works for Just-in-Time Fabrication and Fulfillment. Instead of outsourcing production, his company is 100% MADE IN AMERICA—and keeps prices down by bringing in cheap labor through a time portal. Training these quaint temp workers seems like a good job—until Taylor meets the latest batch of New Guys. (Also available from other ebook retailers and DRM-free, if that suits you better.)
The Giant Squid presents A Tahitian Tale: Chronicles of the Giant Squid – Volume 1: The first in a series of autobiographical two-fisted tales narrated by Poor Mojo’s Giant Squid–a sorta sinister, sorta steampunk squid just trying to get along in a world not of his making (and also recover Tycho Brahe’s cursed golden nose for his Nazi masters).
Tucker Teaches the Clockies to Copulate (Clockie American Steampunk Book 1): In this celebrated steampunk novella, a lonely veterinarian recounts a crippled, alcoholic, Confederate infantryman’s attempts to teach decommissioned clockwork soldiers to make nice (*wink, wink*) with their Mormon neighbors. (Also available in a multi-format pick-what-you-pay DRM-free bundle.)

Treat yourself!

Start Your Virtual Non-Denominational Gift-Giving Holiday Shopping Early: 50% Off No Starch Press eBooks LIKE MINE!!!

From now until T-Day No Starch Press is offering 50% of all their DRM-free ebooks, including my first book, Snip, Burn, Solder, Shred. These ebook bundles include mobi (for Kindles), ePub (for everything else), and really awesomely slick PDFs–like, the PDF is *literally* the file used to print the book itself. Stunningly sharp, super-easy to search. Totally sold me on ebooks, as a thing.
Anyway, use the coupon code: GRAVYBOAT, save $10, and get jolly as Old Saint Nick power-slamming latkes and apple-beer with black baby Jesus and all his flying magic elk-dogs–or whatever. Merry Spendingtime!!!

*UPDATE* HELLA GOOD DEAL ALERT! $7 “Helping Hands” from Maker Shed!–and Even Cheaper at Harbor Freight!?! #diy

UPDATE: My lifelong compadre Adam Stein points out that Harbor Freight has basically the same Helping Hands for $3.50! *Yikes!* BUY NOW!

I don’t normally post stuff like this, but Maker Shed has a couple really good deals right now for folks new to soldering.
These helping hands are a *steal* at $6.99, and make life *so much easier.* There is now almost *no* soldering task I do without using my helping hands (although I have pulled off the magnifier, which was never very useful to me). Also, this variable-temp soldering iron also looks promising. The reviews are mixed, but at $25, it’s probably worth taking a chance.

Let’s Throw Boomerangs and Launch Water Rockets in Manchester, Michigan!

On Thursday, September 4, I’ll be hosting a make-n-take event at the Manchester Farmers’ Market on behalf of the town’s fantabulous public library–come hang out! We’ll make and launch DIY water rockets and boomerangs, with supplies on hand to send at least the first few dozen folks home with their own water rockets or boomerangs. Here’s a pretty damn delightful write-up.

  • WHAT: Make-n-take Water Rockets & Boomerangs!
  • WHERE: Manchester Farmers’ Market @ Main & Adrian St in Manchester, MI

  • WHEN: Thursday September 4, 4-7pm
  • See you at STEAMTOPIA!!!

    Hey All: I’ll be at the Steamtopia Steampunk Convention in Dearborn, MI, June 12-15. Here’s a really slick version of the Steamtopia Schedule.
    I’ll be teaching workshops on DIY booze and hummingbird feeders and homebrew electric stringed instruments, as well as sitting on a publishing panel, running a few writing workshops, selling and signing books, and generally hanging around. We can drink some beers and then get into a foam knife-fight! See you there!

    Check out “Haphead”—a noir-ish near-future SF web series #scifi

  • Haphead (HAP-hed): noun An individual who has learned lethal skills by playing next-gen fully immersive video games. Associated with emotional instability, poor impulse control, and violent public outbursts.

    This Buffyesque web-series is the latest project from the folks who brought you the mockumentary Ghosts with Shit Jobs. If you dig the trailer, please take a second to “Like” it on YouTube, Facebook, G+, etc., or sign up for their newsletter; the more public support they can show for this project, the more likely the Canadian government will bankroll the series. Go Canada!

  • Come to Ignite8 in #AnnArbor! I’ll Teach You to Make #BOOZE!

    I’m speaking at Ignite Ann Arbor this Sunday, Nov 17. If you’ve never been to an Ignite Event, they’re pretty rad: Speakers have 5 minutes and 20 slides to talk on basically anything (with topics generally skewing toward tech, science, and local issues). For an added challenge the slides auto-advance every 15 seconds–which makes it hard to be boring, and functionally impossible to commit PowerPoint sins like reading from the slide or cramming in six paragraphs and a bullet list (also, animated transitions are verboten, thank god).
    The event has a solid line-up (including yours truly, talking about making booze), and is FREE–but seating is limited, so register now to make sure you have a seat.
    See you Sunday!