Ghost Wars

I checked out “Ghost Wars” episode one on SyFy and my reaction is, “meh.” The whole plot is one guy having the ability to see and speak with spirits. He is viewed as an outcast from the whole town and he attempts to leave. He is unable too, due to being trapped, for some reason. Additionally, people start dying in the town and their spirits are also trapped within.

Per IMDB, the summary is, “A remote Alaskan town that has been overrun by paranormal forces and local outcast Roman Mercer (Jogia) must overcome the town’s prejudices and his own personal demons if he’s to harness his repressed psychic powers and save everyone from the mass haunting that’s threatening to destroy them all.”

The main characters is played by Avam Jogia. I recognized him from the show Victorius, when my kids watched it. The main characters ghost girl friend is played by Elise Gatien. I was also surprised to see the singer Meat Loaf in it.

Interestingly, the main character has a female ghost friend that he communicates with. I found some similarities between this story line and my own book I wrote last year, Sight and Sound. Like my book, the character has the ability to interact beyond the veil. Unlike my book the main character can both see and hear the spirits. Within my book, one character can see while the other can hear.
It was a slow start, and began to answer a few questions toward the end. I guess we will see where this goes.

 

#authorMattCole

Wisdom of the Crowd vs Bias

There is a recent show coming out this fall titled Wisdom of the Crowd. Essentially the show captures the idea of crowd-sourcing the public to submit information through their smartphones in the hopes to be part of criminal capture.

 

A tech innovator creates a cutting-edge crowd-sourcing hub to solve his own daughter’s murder, as well as revolutionizing crime solving in San Francisco. (IMDB, 2017)

This idea is not necessary new, as police have utilized social media and other avenues of technology to assist them in their job of hunting bad guys. While I haven’t had time to watch this yet, I suspect it will be more about ‘see something say something’ ideology. Thank you Janet Napolitano.

We continue to spiral in a world where most would flip out their smartphone to record for YouTube over assisting victims.

An interesting article discusses how the average of the wisdom of the crowd guessed the weight of an ox within 10 pounds. The result was the idea of a collection of the whole is better data than the expert of one.

Way back in 1906, the English polymath Francis Galton visited a country fair in which 800 people took part in a contest to guess the weight of a slaughtered ox. After the fair, he collected the guesses and calculated their average which turned out to be 1,208 pounds. To Galton’s surprise, this was within 1 percent of the true weight of 1,198 pounds. (TechnologyReview, 2014 Jul 14)

More fascinating to me is it turns out that if a crowd offers a wide range of independent estimates, then it is more likely to be wise. But if members of the crowd are influenced in the same way, for example by each other or by some external factor, then they tend to converge on a biased estimate.  (TechnologyReview, 2014 Jul 14) This bias climate can be seen recently with the shootings in Las Vegas, when reporters told the witnesses only one shooter, rather than listening to what those on the ground had to say.

Meriam Webster defines crowdsourcing as the practice of obtaining needed services, ideas, or content by soliciting contributions from a large group of people and especially from the online community rather than from traditional employees or suppliers.

This is quite effective as most people today would leave their wallet at home, over their smartphone. Again, the new show is merely a reflection of what is already occuring.

  • Hatari project enables citizens of Nairobi to submit and share reports on locations of criminal activity  and corruption. Visitors to the site can openly, or anonymously share their own experiences as victims of crime, in addition to the reporting of incidents and also receive alerts to crimes committed in their area. All information is shared via text messaging, as well as web postings and messages via social media such as Twitter.
  • Police in Bristol, England are using Facebook and the internet to track down the killer of 25 year old architect Joanna Yeates who went missing on Friday 17th December 2010. Joanna’s body was found on Christmas Day. The Avon and Somerset Constabulary’s website and Facebook page contain a map of Joanna’s movements prior to her disappearance.
  • Postacrime.com, Spotcrime.com, and CrimeReports all rely on tips from the public for information on all types of crimes committed, although Postacrime only focuses on instances of property loss and damage.
  • The Seattle Police Department already have their own Twitter account with over 7,000 plus followers keeping track of the goings on in their city as well as tweeting vital information to help police in their investigations. They have now established a new initiative to tackle car crime, called Get Your Car Back.  All reports of stolen cars are posted to this designation, including full details of the vehicle’s registration, colour, make and model. Followers who receive the tweet alerts call 911 when they recognise a stolen vehicle.  Although it is too early to tell just how effective the move is proving to be, Seattle PD’s goal is to reduce the number of thefts between 10 and 20 percent.
  • In 2014 a new app called LEEDIR (Large Emergency Event Digital Information Repository) help police use smartphones as tools to gather evidence. (AP, 2014 May 2)

Those against this type of usage fear all this data is over reach of privatization. Additionally, it subjects innocent people to police scrutiny and does not provide “good evidence”. Personally, I feel Big Brother is getting assistance from it’s slaves.

“There’s a reason that we pay professionals to work in police departments,” said Nate Cardozo, a civil liberties attorney with the Electronic Frontier Foundation.

People are passionate about being in the community , and will willingly contribute and may not realize they are being exploited by the company,” Moffitt explained.

Whats your thoughts on this topic? I would love to hear it.

References:

IMDB. (2017). Wisdom of the Crowd. Retrieved from http://www.imdb.com/title/tt6522758/

TechnologyReview. (2014 Jul 14). Forget Wisdom of Crowds; Neurobiologists reveal the wisdom of the confident. Retrieved from https://www.technologyreview.com/s/528941/forget-the-wisdom-of-crowds-neurobiologists-reveal-the-wisdom-of-the-confident/

AP. (2014 May 2). New app lets police crowd source evidence. Retrieved from http://nypost.com/2014/05/02/new-app-lets-police-crowd-source-evidence/

Daughter’s Political Socialist Paper w My Answers

Below is a list of questions, my daughter wanted me to answer for a college paper. I could have gone further in detail, and listed more names of whom I listen to (when able). However, the below answers provide somewhat of a view of my political and socialistic views.  Don’t gauge them on APA standards, as I was just trying to answer the questions (at 5 a.m. in the morning).

 

  • Are you currently in a political party? If so, which one and why?
    • I am registered as an Independent. The reason is due to viewing a drastic change in the two primary (Democrat, Republican) parties over the years. Before, one normally follows the parents in the same party they are affiliated with. However, over time, both parties have moved to the left of the political spectrum.
  • Do you affiliate with another unrecognized political ideology?
    • However, I would say at times I don’t recognize those in the Republican Party. (smile)
  • Are you nonpartisan?
    • Non-partisan means not biased toward a special group. My answer is no. I believe everyone is biased toward one group or another. It has to do with culture, worldviews and how we are raised.
  • Discuss agents of socialization in regards to your personal political life as mentioned in chapter six.
    • I will discuss each agent individually below.
    • Family – I was raised during the time where we didn’t speak politics or religion. My family was never really political from my memory. My brother and I were dropped off at church quite often when we were young. However, as we grew older, church and politics were never a priority within the family home. However, I would say being raised, it was a big no-no for the racial mixture. Now, that I have children, I don’t view others by skin color, rather worldviews. Race is not the proper definition, rather different ethnicities.
    • Schools – Like family, the school never really discussed such things. I had black friends, but the idea of inter-racial (ethnic) couples was frowned upon in the town. I recall a janitor discussing catching inter-racial kids kissing with disdain. I also recall one white girl being pregnant with a black boy. Again, as I remember, that was frowned upon.
    • Peers – I was generally with one or two friends the most. I never was with a crowd of friends, nor did I hang out in parties. I was an 80’s kid. We didn’t care about politics.
    • The mass media – Since I was an 80’s kid, it was a big thing to see ‘Boy George’, due to being a guy dressed like a woman. I recall friends teasing others when they found out. I look back on some of the 80’s music and see now how highly sexualized the songs were. Personally, I am amazed my parents weren’t more concern with the mass media pushing sex and drugs. Regarding cartoons, the primary ones were GIJoe, Heman and the like. At the end of those cartoons, a message was given to the audience. These were generally positive messages in how to treat others. Today’s mass media is far different than when I was growing up. What I see is rather than pushing sex and drugs, it is pushing LGBTQ. Before we trusted the news source. This was before the internet. Now, everything is questionable. We see multiple news outlets speaking the exact quotes, and wonder if they are all reading off the same script. Additionally, one learns only 6 corporations own 90% of the media, they again question the bias.
    • Religion – Raised primarily as a Baptist, my parents would drop us off at the church. Looking back, I wonder if this provided them alone time. Going to church wasn’t a priority, as much as when we had a chance. I do not recall praying before meals. We did say our prayers before we went to sleep, as kids. Now, I do view religion as being important and a major tenet in the worldview. Based on your religious beliefs, it will cultivate how you view human life, how one treats another, and other major factors in everyday actions.
  • Explain how your family, education, thus far, friends, religion, military service etc. have shaped your views.
    • When growing up, I looked up to my elders (primary my grandmother) as my social influence. She lived through the depression and had a good soul. The normal treat others as you would like to be treated, etc. was expected. Don’t waste anything, and be nice was emphasized.
    • As far as “education thus far”, it depends on the individual. The last five years, I have researched more through the internet, than any other times regarding my worldview. While the internet provides a plethora of information, you have to take most with a grain of salt. I still see politics and worldview being pushed on the youth around me. However, the internet provides instant communication outside the small town mentality. Yet, I fear most kids rather play video games, than educate themselves politically.
    • Religion is interesting to me. Yes, I believe Christ is the only method of salvation. However, there are other aspects of the bible not discussed, in relation to world events for many churches in our area.
    • The military holds sacred to me. Requesting kids to join in order to fight for our Country and freedom is no small thing. Seeing how veterans are sometimes being treated after those services and sacrifices angers me.
  • Have any politicians, political events, or political commentators influenced your viewpoints?
    • Reagan was big in the 80’s when the Russian wall came down. I never really got into politics till later in life. I leaned heavily to the Republican side, due to the more conservative views. However, as I researched, I began viewing politics as more of a false paradigm of left vs right. Hence I now view myself more Independent. The issue of Oklahoma voting is you’re not able to vote in the opposite party until a major vote is required. Getting more political as my kids were very young, I ran and finally won a seat on the local school’s Election Board. I served a five-year term. This provided a real-world experience on the inside of how the government (to a degree) worked. It was one of the more stressful times in my life, but a unique opportunity that helped me understand both sides of the spectrum. Regarding commentators, I listened to Rush Limbaugh a lot when I was younger, and today there are more commenters I listen to, when able. Some of those are Mark Levin, Michelle Malkin, Glen Beck, Jon Stewart (although satire, I enjoyed his show), and Bill O’Reilly.
  • Has God influenced how you think politically?
    • Once you dive into the Bible, you begin to understand Jesus did not simply preach, rather he also chastised the Pharisees etc. While I would not condone the far left preaching to kill in the name of religion, I would condone preachers discussing being more active in politics.
    • While the bible mentions Jesus indicating give to Ceaser what is Ceasers, he also upturned the apple cart when he trashed the storefront of the chapel.
  • Discuss how your political viewpoints have evolved (or may evolve).
    • Overall, my political viewpoint has evolved drastically over time, in my opinion. While raised conservative (without realizing it), I do not follow the traits of being one political affiliate just because my parents may be. I consider my dad’s view more liberal than I, while my mother rarely discusses her viewpoint. I believe it is more conservative, but she has never shown me much interest in it. I have always attempted to install to my kids to understand why they have their worldview and political view. Don’t just accept it because I believe it, tell me why you believe the way you do. This makes them research more and come to a better understanding of why. I learned more stuff on politics after school than during high school. Before marriage, I cared little or not at all with the exception of being influenced by Rush Limbaugh. I then grew to understand how politics influence the culture greatly and jumped in the idea of being Republican. As time went on, I began to understand being Republican was not enough. There are many factions within both Democratic and Republican party believes that I hate but also accept. Thus my political affiliation became Independent. I took the time to write to my representatives and congressman on social and political issues. Getting replies back, and seeing how some were more responsive than others influenced my thinking. I began to see doublespeak, and how replies were done if the view didn’t reflect my own.  Today, I try to view both sides of the argument in order to gain a better understand why each side holds their worldview. I continue to grow and be influenced by listening and researching current topics and events.

Why I Write About Demons

One wonders why I write about demons or spiritual entities. Isn’t that just asking for them to come into your homes and cause you harm or issues? Many Christians steer clear of researching this content because quite frankly it’s taboo in many churches.

 

While I agree one should not invite these entities in, I also believe we should understand the enemy and his snares. It is a double-edged sword, in my opinion.

“If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles. If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat. If you know neither the enemy nor yourself, you will succumb in every battle.” Sun Tzu, The Art of War

With this in mind, two things must occur in dealing with the supernatural.

  • Know yourself to be saved by grace, through Christ.
  • Know you are indeed not only in a battle with the enemy but also within his current control here on Earth, through the flesh.

This is why I am attempting to convey information through stories, ECT. Providing some insights to the reality we are currently in. There is a spiritual battle.

 

Fast forward: I was recently watching a video, created by Rob Skiba and there was an interesting comment during the discussion. While it was a sidebar comment, it really had me thinking the deeper meaning behind it.

The side conversation was something like this:

In the Garden of Eden when Adam took of the tree of knowledge, why do you think it was an act of mercy to kick him out before he ate from the tree of life?

Because, if he had eaten from the tree of life, after eating from the tree of knowledge, he could never be redeemed. He would live forever in sin.

While this may seem obvious to some, it really struck me.

The angels (sons of God) were made eternal. When 200 of them dropped in on Mount Hermon and sinned against God, by cohabiting with the daughters of men, they erred greatly. So much, those angels were given a unique and dramatic punishment.

Angels cannot be redeemed. At least I find no-where in the Bible a possible redemption pathway for them.

Adversely, mankind was provided redemption through the sacrifice of Christ. This is why it is very important to understand this. We as mankind have only this short lifespan to accept that gift prior to physical death. That choice will determine our own eternal habitation.

And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment:” Hebrews 9:27

The enemy knows this. The enemy knows that it has already lost, and is trying to deceive as many as possible to not take that gift from the creator. These snares come in the form of a wide variety of keeping busy, entertained, rabbit trails, in-fighting, ECT.

So yeah, I am looking into our current physical, worldly issues, and bringing focus on the spiritual battles being played out behind the scenes. This is why I partly wrote Sight and Sound, and working on Trauma.

Most would more likely choose a paranormal novel to read (as entertainment) as opposed to hearing a sermon. Perhaps I can provide that entertainment, while also planting seeds conveying this material world is only one piece of the larger picture.

My attempt to bring light into the dark world.

 

#AuthorMattCole

Ancient Technology in Hoysaleswara – Lathe

 

The temple Hoysaleswara found in India is dedicated to the Hindu god Shiva. The construction of the temple was started in 1120 and completed in 1150. While the temple was created in 30 years, the fascinating thing about this particular temple is ‘how’ it was created. The how continues to baffle historians, due to the intricacies of design. With the evolutionist world view, it would baffle many. However, with the understanding of ‘nothing new under the sun’, it is easy to explain.

The temple is 900 years old. It predates automobiles and other current technologies. It is found in Halebeedu, Karnataka, India. It is one of the largest temples dedicated to Shiva.

 

Shiva

 

Shiva duty is to destroy all the worlds at the end of creation and dissolve them into nothingness. Shiva holds a skull that represents samsara, the cycle of life, death and rebirth. Samsara is a central belief in Hinduism. Shiva himself also represents this complete cycle because he is Mahakala the Lord of Time, destroying and creating all things. It should be noted that the statue of Shiva is found at CERN.

 

Backdrop

Considering we were still using horse and buggy up until the first automobile creation in 1893, technology, for the most part, was rudimentary. Evolutionists hold the idea man was dumber in the past, and we are involving as time goes on. That world view would require no technology or advanced intellect in the past. The temple Hoysaleswara contradicts that theory.

 

Findings

However, a look into the temple Hoysaleswara speaks differently. Take a look at the stone pillars in the temple. Notice they are created by a lathe tool. This would require not only a large impressive machine to rotate these large pillars but the technology to lathe them.

 

 

Today, we use a similar technology in shaping metal via lathe.

One of the gods holds a tool, much like today’s gears.

This tool consists of 32 outer gears, with intricate inner gears. Perhaps this is the tool used to lathe the monumental pillars in the temple.

This same type of tool is used today.

 

This is just one look at how ‘ancient technology’ was merely lost and regained during the last 300 years. I point out Ecclesiastes 1:9,

What has been will be again, what has been done will be done again; there is nothing new under the sun.

 

The bigger question is, why has technology resurfaced again, and what does that mean?

I propose the following:

  • We are not getting smarter, as evolutionist desire, rather we are reintroduced with lost knowledge.
  • This technology is provided to us by other means than natural selection.

 

#AuthorMattCole

Wonder Woman 2017 – Sumerian and Ottoman

 

Recently my son and I watched the new 2017 Wonder Woman (WW) movie. During the movie, the scene of Dr. Poison having a notebook containing two languages peeked my interest. The scene indicated she needed the book, and it appeared she was attempting to decipher it to a point. To me, she was attempting to resurrect an old forgotten technology. This happened to be a powerful gas poison.

However, the point is, there is nothing new under the sun. Ecclesiastes 1:9 tells us, “What has been will be again, what has been done will be done again; there is nothing new under the sun.” There has been a lot of discussions recently on YouTube regarding the forgotten technology of the ancients, being resurfaced.

I found it fascinating we see this same glimpse in WW.

Ottoman and Sumerian

 

[Picture from http://mostlydeadlanguages.tumblr.com/post/163173770183/the-sumerian-cuneiform-in-wonder-woman]

The site mostly dead languages provide us the above picture and additional insight on the actually written notebook.

Now, here are the things that I feel pretty confident asserting:

  1. The notes are indeed a mixture of two languages.  Based on my difficulty extracting meaning from the cuneiform alone, I suspect that both are necessary for an accurate translation.

  2. The cuneiform is in the Neo-Assyrian (NA) script.  While this script was never used for writing Sumerian, it is the most standardized and simplified version, and (more importantly) it’s the most widely published version of the time.

  3. The cursive is an alphabet (or abjad) in the Arabic family, but it’s not Arabic itself, as evidenced by letters like چ (ç).

  4. “Ottoman” is not a language, but Ottoman Turkish and Persian were both used in the Ottoman Empire, and both of them had alphabets that contain چ.  As I’m utterly unfamiliar with Turkish and Persian, and only marginally familiar with Arabic cursive, that’s the most I can narrow it down.  Regardless, given that Steve was literally on assignment in Turkey, it’s very surprising that neither he nor the cryptographers recognized the script. [Source]

     

Diana Queen of the Amazons

We are told Diana was molded from a lump of clay and the god Zues brought her to life. This hearkens back to the Living God creating Adam from dirt.

Genesis 2:7 Then the LORD God formed a man from the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living being.

Diana is the daughter of Zeus and a human. She is bestowed with godlike powers, “Beautiful as Aphrodite, wise as Athena, swifter than Hermes, and stronger than Hercules.” Essentially a demigod or super human at the very least.

 

This cross between a god and human is the Nephilim. The Nephilim (“fallen ones, giants”) were the offspring of sexual relationships between the sons of God and daughters of men in Genesis 6:1–4.  I wrote a similar post in regards to Guardians of the Galaxy Volume 2, where again we see the main character being a Nephilim.

So again the entertainment industry in 2017 circles back to the beginning of the Bible in Genesis 6:4.

 

#AuthorMattCole

4 Categories of Demons

 

Spectra (Spectre)/Lemures:

Ghosts or personates family members. (1) Thought to impersonate deceased or ghosts that trouble houses or solitary places(hauntings). Familiar spirits. cursed objects or poltergeist activity. It is my belief, many of these are seen on the ghost chaser shows on TV. These could also be those assisting the mediums during family seances, where they have insight on family history and knowledge.

Umbrae Mortuorum (Dead Shadow or Shadow People):

Shades of the dead. One of the earliest encounters with the shadow people was reported by the editor of the Paranormal magazine, Richard Holland. (2) Normally there is a dark countenance and malevolent feelings that are often reported in association with these creatures. Per Jason Offutt, author of ‘The Darkness Walks’, the most common [type of] shadow person encounters: a blacker-than-night, human-shaped shadow that people see walking through their bedroom, hallway, living room, etc. (3)

Obsession:

Follow certain people to trouble them from outward during the day. (incubus/succubus). Also could be mental illness being oppressed by spirits. We see an example found in 2 Corinthians 12:7-8, where Paul has a ‘thorn in the flesh’.

7 And lest I should be exalted above measure through the abundance of the revelations, there was given to me a thorn in the flesh, the messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I should be exalted above measure. 8 For this thing I besought the Lord thrice, that it might depart from me.

Obsession is an advanced form of oppression to the believer.

Possession:

The spirit enters inwardly in the person to trouble them. Illusionary deception to make them believe they are travelling, via astral projection, prophesy, ECT. Spirits and entities do not walk to up to a person and ask them if they want to be possessed. Instead, they find a weakness or a door through traditional family behavior or reckless behavior of the individual. The person’s active free will must be breached. They usually seduce a person with something simple and almost innocent unless they have done something that they have tremendous shame or guilt over. (4)

References:

(1). King James. King James Demonology: Modern Translation. Retrieved from https://books.google.com/books?id=_4PfDQAAQBAJ&pg=PT47&lpg=PT47&dq=king+james+identified+4+categories+of+spirits&source=bl&ots=6nvKmTyVuT&sig=FlF893jLF01BON76Jx-_sHgD2qg&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwjSgL2u1ObVAhUP92MKHQ_vCOEQ6AEINzAC#v=onepage&q=king%20james%20identified%204%20categories%20of%20spirits&f=false

(2). Leo Ruickbie. A Brief Guide to the Supernatural: Ghosts, Vampires and the Paranormal. Retrieved from https://books.google.com/books?id=G7_ABAAAQBAJ&pg=PT21&lpg=PT21&dq=Umbrae+Mortuorum++shadow+people&source=bl&ots=gJvvSJ9IHr&sig=0p5P1NnrTzQM09Zc4moHnSCIXnw&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwiXrMfD2ObVAhUOyWMKHYgbBqcQ6AEIPDAH#v=onepage&q=Umbrae%20Mortuorum%20%20shadow%20people&f=false

(3). Stephen Wagner. An interview with author Jason Offutt about these eerie entities. Retrieved from https://www.thoughtco.com/shadow-people-what-are-they-2594067

(4). Spirit Attachment and Possession Symptoms. Retrieved from http://www.texasghostandspirit.com/parasitic-entities/entity-and-spirit-attachment-and-possession-and-symptoms/

#authormattcole

Cursed Objects

Movies and stories have been created revolving the cursed object(s). The object is generally believed to be cursed by someone or possessed by an evil entity or deceased soul. Curse can be defined as a prayer or invocation for harm or injury to come upon one : imprecation People believe that there is a curse on the house. (1)

Interesting stories of missionaries in the foriegn land have been provided objects or trinkets (said to be prayed over) and found the objects to be cursed. These same missionaries must remove the object in order to be rid of the curse.

7 known cursed objects existing today are:

Thomas Busby’s Chair
Annabelle the Doll
The Crying Boy Paintings
The Basano Vase
James Dean Car
The Dybbuk Box
The Myrtles Plantation’s Mirror

Biblically we are told there are cursed things and unclean things that should not be touched.

“Neither shalt thou bring an abomination into thine house, lest thou be a cursed thing like it: but thou shalt utterly detest it, and thou shalt utterly abhor it; for it is a cursed thing.” (Deu 7:26)

“Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing and I will receive you.” (2 Cor 6:17)

There are a number of the occult and cursed objects within Ed and Lorraine’s Occult Museum. The moving ‘The Conjuring’ was based off the demonic possessed doll Annabell which is stored there. The real doll is a Raggedy Ann doll. (2)

It is said demonic entities can smell, feed, and gain energy from occult items, cursed or otherwise. Interestingly, these cursed objects can also provide a link between the two dimensions, allowing entrance and acceptance of said demonic entity. The demon attaches them to the object.

To rid yourself of these cursed objects, three steps are provided.

  1. Go before God and confess this out as a sin before Him, telling Him that you are sorry and that you did not know that this particular object was cursed with the presence of demons on it.
  2. Burn or throw away this cursed object so it is fully removed from their house.
  3. Then do a full house cleansing.(3)

References:

(1). Meriam-Webster. Curse. Retrieved from https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/curse

(2). Amanda Tullos. The real life CONJURING! A look at Ed and Lorraine Warren’s occult museum. Retrieved from http://www.blumhouse.com/2016/06/13/the-real-life-conjuring-a-look-at-ed-and-lorraine-warrens-occult-museum/

(3). Dealing with the legal rights of demons. Retrieved from http://www.bible-knowledge.com/dealing-with-the-legal-rights-of-demons/

#AuthorMattCole

What I learned from Published Illustrators and Authors

I had the opportunity to hear some illustrators and authors. On Wednesday, July 26th, Ellen Oh, E.B. Lewis, Joe Cepeda, and Kent Nerburn provided insights on being published illustrators and authors. The panel was geared toward children’s books at the Fort Smith, Arkansas main library.

I was able to glean a couple of interesting things.

1) The editor is no longer in charge of choosing the author/story to be published.
2) The gatekeepers are not holding onto what is being accepted, rather what is being distributed.

In the past, to be published it was the editor that decided what was chosen. He or she would comb through the submissions in the attempt to find that diamond. That is no longer the case. Today it’s all about the bottom dollar and companies are choosing what is to be published. Not by the good storyline or character, rather how well that story can be marketed, promoted, and consumed by the readers. IE: can we sell it.

A quick Google search will reveal five trade book publishers as the major players. Those are Hachette Book Group, HarperCollins, Macmillan Publishers, Penguin Random House, and Simon & Schuster. These are the primary U.S. divisions of publishers based in foreign countries.
Outside the big 5 publishers, one can trickle down to the self-published authors or the guy running a shop out of his/her basement. The number of actual ‘publishing’ companies is hard to define.

Thus, getting published is easy, per say. The real power is the channels of distribution. Quantity of sales equals more money for the author, and those authors that have been chosen for their books to be allowed in the main bookstores are very fortunate. When you walk into any well-known book store and see that nice end cap display, it’s not done by the book store, rather the marketing department of the book publisher.

Each submission is filtered down to the group within the publishing company and weighed for its marketing capability, what is currently being consumed by the populace, and how much of a return will it be in revenue. As I said, it’s a business and the dollar weighs heavy on the choice.

Interestingly, all in the panel agreed in today’s book world it’s very difficult and ugly. Very few can actually be successful, much less live off of that work type alone. The very idea of self-publishing made more than one squirm.

The business side was ugly, and I personally do not believe any author or artist really enjoys it. The author and artist have a story to convey and wish that story is given to as many in the world as possible.

Regarding the discussion of self-publishing, many of the panels found it undesirable. After listening to them, I get it. In the author world, once you see that acceptance and the Library of Congress ISBN for your work, it is a mark of ‘making it’.

In every industry, there is a ladder and each dedicated rung of that ladder marks progression. Having that ISBN in the Library of Congress, and seeing your book accepted by distribution to the major arteries of the book stores is the epitome of success.

Having some Joe Blow push his content into a print on demand (POD) and calling himself an author is viewed as an insult for those hustling in the industry. What those stuck in the traditional model do not understand is many of us are simply using the provided new business model for our content. Both require work.

However, as someone working the angle of self-published, I also realize merely having the ability to print your content and seeing it online is not necessarily the end game. There are many of us, simply desiring to see their stories being available to the public. The measure of success differs for each of us.

As the landscape changes, so do the opportunity for that to happen.

 

#authorMattCole

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