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Mike Reeves-McMillan
Attended Massey University
Lives in Auckland
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Mike Reeves-McMillan

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What do people think "erstwhile" means?

I keep seeing writers, some of them with otherwise good vocabularies, using it to mean... I can't figure out exactly what, but, judging from the context, not what it actually means.

So what do you think it means? I'm trying to figure out what word it's being confused with, and drawing a blank.
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I feel like people are using it as one of those "Victorian English sounding adjectives," hah. Like "The redoubtable Sir James" or "The illustrious Lord Edward" or "the erstwhile Sir Wallace" 
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Mike Reeves-McMillan

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"But what do we get out of the space program? Shouldn't we spend that money on solving problems here on Earth?"

It's not either-or.
 
Algorithm, created to help pick options for Mars, now helps with energy efficiency of homes on Earth: http://www.nasa.gov/offices/oct/feature/how-a-solution-for-mars-architecture-helped-with-energy-efficiency-in-the-home
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I agree about the "not either or"
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Mike Reeves-McMillan

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This is an excellent book, and you really should buy it if you don't have it. But today you don't have to: it's free.

I've beta-read the sequel, and I'm eagerly awaiting its release.
 
It's my birthday, so I'm giving away my book today. My fantasy novel, Orison, is free today only at the Nine Muse Press store! The file is a zip containing the book in .mobi, epub, and PDF formats. Here's what people have to say about the book:

"Orison is a wonderfully written fantasy novel that interweaves the perspective of three great characters: a thief named Story, a banished wizard named Wrynn, and a guard of the queen named Ashen. Each of these characters struggles to navigate the dangers of a city fraught with conspiracies of powerful people who have no qualms about using Story, Wrynn, and Ashen as disposable pawns. Orison is an engaging novel with complex characters that leave me hoping that Swensen will be writing more."

"I've been waiting for a fantasy book like this since I finished Jim Butcher's 'Codex Alera.'"

"Daniel Swensen creates a world and a city that is vivid and a cast of characters that are easy to like and understand. I stood with Story, the protagonist, on the roof tops of Calushain and we watched the mischief below as if it had been painted by Picasso."

"This book is exactly what I love about writing. I love how Swensen just gets into the world seamlessly, where I just felt it was normal. Story, the MC, is a girl that I can see pieces of myself in and is truly someone I want to root for. I loved the pace of the story and the overall development of the different story lines. Once I got past the first chapter, I was hooked and finished the book in a few days."

Please spread the word if you're so inclined! Thanks!

http://ninemusepress.com/books/orison/
by: Daniel Swensen Calushain. A grim, dirty city, with no opportunities for a young female thief, so it’s no surprise Story wants to leave. Yet when she acquires the orison, an artifact with the po…
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Thank you. I had to rotate the screen :/
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OK, when a scene in your own novel makes you shed actual tears, it needs to be published. Especially since it's about an underclass facing prejudice and oppression, in the context of an election.
 
I'm not feeling the Hand of the Trickster sequel right now, for some reason, so I pulled out my uncompleted Gryphon Clerks novel, Mister Bucket for Assembly (in which the gnome Bucket stands for political office).

It's better than I remembered, and there's a lot of it (70,000 words). I might just finish it up and publish it. 
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No, sorry.
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Via Deb Chachra's newsletter, an article which makes the point that the reason VR is cool is that instead of tiny muscles controlling a tiny joystick or touchpad or whatever, you are controlling the game with your whole body and your whole physicality.

(Friends of +Damian Trasler will quickly detect why I thought of him while reading.)
Holopoint is a VR archery game, and it's almost impossible to explain why it's so good without sounding like a wanker. It doesn't look like much. You're in…
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Here's an interesting thought. At one point we were primitive creatures in, colloquially speaking, a jungle. There are even still a few primitive peoples in actual jungles. But now what mankind has rapidly created is a technological jungle that most of us hardly understand, and nobody really understands all of it. As we progress, this jungle is only going to get denser, and while we will no doubt build machines to help us navigate it while simultaneously building machines to make it a better jungle, we still will be entirely dependent on the machines to navigate the jungle. At times we may find ourselves lost in our own jungle.

Furthermore, we are already reaching the point when individual pieces of technology become so complicated that nobody fully understands them. Google is 2 billion lines of code. I'm willing to bet some good money that no one person knows exactly how the google search engine operates, yet it does and billions of people rely on it.

The problem I see with this is that if we don't engineer technology now that can troubleshoot complex technological systems, there will be a point when complex things break and no one can fix them without massive, expensive collaboration - just because no single person will know enough of the system! (I feel like this has already happened in economics and politics.) I'm not sure we've really reached this point yet, but it is at most just a couple decades down the road.
“We are in a new era, one in which we are building systems that can’t be grasped in their totality or held in the mind... read more
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So true. We're caught between two realities as we don't have our individual patches of jungle anymore either. I was following Bear Grylls Island, 16 people trying to stay alive on a tropical paradise for 33 days. Finally, on the day before the 13 remaining were due to leave, they got themselves a good meal. 
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Mike Reeves-McMillan

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Via +David Brin, a plan to send out automated spacecraft which will convert asteroids into other automated spacecraft and send them where we want them. 
It’s funny, because even in the space industry, it isn’t every day that you get to work on a really far reaching idea. At Made In Space the…
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As long as they aren't berserkers.
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Up to 93k on this thing. I am on a roll like butter, is how I am on a roll. 
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Whole wheat. Crusty.
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Mister Bucket For Assembly has hit 88k, and might yet reach 100k.

For me, that is unprecedentedly huge, since I write in an especially compact style.

It has a lot of different threads, but I think I'm managing, this time, to interweave them effectively. Time will tell.
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I'm picturing a kind of animist future world in which every living and nonliving thing is linked into a descendant of the Internet, and in which bits of intelligence have been incorporated into many of them - so you can have an actual conversation with a tree, and this is a normal part of your day.
When the city of Melbourne linked email accounts to trees so people could report problems, they wrote love letters to the trees instead.
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druids are already cyber druids.
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Mike Reeves-McMillan

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I'm not feeling the Hand of the Trickster sequel right now, for some reason, so I pulled out my uncompleted Gryphon Clerks novel, Mister Bucket for Assembly (in which the gnome Bucket stands for political office).

It's better than I remembered, and there's a lot of it (70,000 words). I might just finish it up and publish it. 
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+Mike Reeves-McMillan I very much look forward to reading it!
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Mike Reeves-McMillan

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I knew indie romance authors were killing it, but I had no idea they were killing it this hard.

A thorough analysis by Data Guy of the US romance market, most of which is invisible to trad pub methods of analysis. Given as a presentation at the RWA conference. Goes into subgenres, KU vs non-KU, length of series, impact of having the first book free, and lots of other useful stuff.

I have a detailed outline, a rough outline, and an idea for some romance novels. Hmmm.
Fantastic information, as usual, Data Guy! Thanks to you and Hugh for putting these numbers together and doing the crunching. I write a bit of romance under a couple of pen names, and this whole data set is an excellent resource for making decisions about the options available to indies.
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The info for series will be misleading because it doesn't account for the difference between series and serials.

Almost all longer series 8+ books are true series. About half of the shorter series are really serials. Sales for each are undoubtedly different. And "First Book Free" probably gives different results between the two types also.
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Mike's Collections
People
In his circles
647 people
Have him in circles
2,619 people
Jolene Stone's profile photo
Bryan Murphy's profile photo
Appiah Dorcas's profile photo
Soha Saeed's profile photo
Bitten Press's profile photo
Andy Purcell's profile photo
Mike Moir's profile photo
Joe Gutierrez's profile photo
Md Ridoy's profile photo
Education
  • Massey University
    Health Science, 2008 - 2010
  • University of Auckland
    English, 1986 - 1989
  • Waitakere College
    1981 - 1985
  • Swanson Primary School
    1973 - 1980
  • Auckland University of Technology
    Celebrant Studies, 2005 - 2006
Basic Information
Gender
Male
Other names
Michael McMillan
Story
Tagline
Novelist, short story writer, copy editor, book reviewer, nonfiction author
Introduction
I write a steampunk-fantasy series about heroic civil servants called The Gryphon Clerks; an urban fantasy series, Auckland Allies; and a lot of short stories, plus the occasional nonfiction book. I do a lot of book reviewing, too. I'm harsh but (I hope) constructive. Currently not accepting review requests.
 
I'll probably only circle you back if you engage me in conversation, and if you either mostly write about writing or something else I find interesting, or you're an unusually interesting and insightful person. Exception: I don't circle erotica writers, just because of what might show up in my stream. Nothing personal.
Bragging rights
While working for a certain notorious NZ publisher in my freelance editing days, I got out with all the money owed to me (if you knew NZ publishing up to the late 90s you'd know who I mean, and be impressed).
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Currently
Auckland