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WILLOW BLUE

WillowBlueCoverLike my short stories here?

Let me try that again.

Do you LOVE my short stories here?

Then you’ll be giddy to know that I’ve just released my second collection of stories in WILLOW BLUE and Other Stories.

My first collection, PERPETUAL BULLET, was originally released exclusively on Barnes & Noble for about 90 days, after which, it was available at eBook retailers everywhere.

WILLOW BLUE is released on exclusively on Amazon for 90 days, so it’s available for every Kindle and every Kindle app. The Kindle app is a free download to your mobile or computer so you can read it even if you don’t own a kindle mobile.

WILLOW BLUE has five stories all written in my impeccable style which you have all come to know and endure!

What will you find inside?

Willow feels responsible for Deena’s bizarre death.
During a quick stop at a convenience store, Paul faces a murderer.
A government protected agent can’t escape his own guilt.
The Immortal Riessa is forcing her lover’s body to mutate.
And another chilling tale of the child, Ankar.

Weird Sex, True Love, Monsters and Mayhem! A collection of stories about hunger and need – in life and beyond the grave.


WillowBlueCoverWant more? Get my book
WILLOW BLUE and Other Stories
Featuring five stories of Weird Sex, True Love, Monsters and Mayhem!
By E.C. McMullen Jr.
Now on sale for $2.99 and available for your Android Tablet, iPad, Kindle, Nook, and every other “E”!
Find it at exclusively at Amazon,for the next 90 days.

PERPETUAL BULLET: A Science Fiction Collection
A trove of previously published Science Fiction Horror Thriller – plus bonus stories
Featuring: Weird Sex, True Love, Monsters and Mayhem!
Available at online retailers everywhere

My story Cedo Looked Like People, is in the 2013 anthology, FEAR THE REAPER, edited by Joe Mynhardt and available in Paperback and eBook.

WHEN ZOMBIES ATTACH!

ZombiesAttachWHEN ZOMBIES ATTACH!
Copyright 2000 by E.C. McMullen Jr.

It was right there in carbon black print.

ZOMBIES ATTACH TOWN is how the headline read and it went out across the nation and the world. Newspapers sold more that day than any since humans first walked on the moon. Some may have bought them because the headline was just so impossible, surely a future collector’s item. Others may have bought them to chuckle derisively over the misspelled headline, but it was no mistake.

I live in the town of Bunker, Arizona and fifteen days ago, Zombies attached my town.

There was no preamble to the rising. No apparent reason at all for the dead to Re-Animate. The zombies just came to life one night and like the old Romero movies, on through much of the day.

It may sound odd, but no one tried to shoot them. Everyone was just too stunned to do anything. Many of us thought we might be in on the butt of some secret reality television joke and that the zombies were actors in make-up. Time soon made us realize otherwise.

They never went after anyone, and if you were old, slow, and just helpless enough to accidentally get in their way, they would just walk around you.

Then they went about attaching themselves to various houses and buildings throughout Bunker.

Nobody knows why they attach themselves to some houses and not others. There seems to be no forethought, no plan to it. I live in an apartment complex, for example, and not one zombie has attached itself to it.

I think we are being singled out but I don’t know why.

In any case, its a source of embarrassment to be one of the very few places that cannot boast even ONE zombie.

Not that I like the zombies, they are a damn nuisance! All they do all damn day and all damn night is dangle attached to houses, stores and even street lamps; arguing about the after life.

You don’t even have to engage them in conversation, just walking past them will do.

“The afterlife,” they say. “Don’t get me started.”

Then they’ll ramble on about the subject until their rotten tongues fall out of their mouths.

I tell you, you’ve never been so happy to see a maggot infested rotten tongue fall out of somebody’s mouth until you’ve seen it happen to a zombie.

END

WHEN ZOMBIES ATTACH, copyright 2000, E.C. McMullen Jr.
Artwork: Zombies Attach. Artist, Feo Amante.


WillowBlueCoverWant more? Get my book
WILLOW BLUE and Other Stories
Featuring five stories of Weird Sex, True Love, Monsters and Mayhem!
By E.C. McMullen Jr.
Now on sale for $2.99 and available for your Android Tablet, iPad, Kindle, Nook, and every other “E”!
Find it at exclusively at Amazon,for the next 90 days.

PERPETUAL BULLET: A Science Fiction Collection
A trove of previously published Science Fiction Horror Thriller – plus bonus stories
Featuring: Weird Sex, True Love, Monsters and Mayhem!
Available at online retailers everywhere

My story Cedo Looked Like People, is in the 2013 anthology, FEAR THE REAPER, edited by Joe Mynhardt and available in Paperback and eBook.

FIRST MONSTER

NosferatuXXXFIRST MONSTER
by E.C. McMullen Jr.
Copyright 2013

Deep into the night while everyone slept, Ankar sat on the foot of his bed.

His feet dangled over the floor and his hands firmly gripped his edge, ready to launch himself off … if need be.

Meanwhile, with his five year old head tilted slightly to the left, so his ear was pointed to the source, Ankar gave his closet door a wary look.

Something moved in there, waking him up. Now there was silence but Ankar was certain that, whatever it was, was biding its time. It waited for Ankar to let down his guard.

Ankar was pretty sure he knew what was in his closet. The same thing he saw with his Uncle Terry that night his parents were out on a date. Over fresh hot popcorn and cool lemonade, they watched an old movie with music and nothing else. No color, no talking, no noises, just the music. His Uncle Terry had insisted Ankar read the title cards out loud as they came up.

“Why can’t we hear them when they talk?”

“That’s how people talked to each other back then before sound,” his Uncle Terry said.

“But they have sound. Music is sound.”

“Just watch,” Uncle Terry said. “History is important.”

Ankar was certain the monster in the movie was the monster in his closet.

A noise!

Ankar leaned closer, his ear turned ever more toward the closet, but not so turned that he couldn’t see it from the corner of his eyes.

A rustling sound.

A monster was in there. No, THE monster was in there.

All the other times, when Ankar ran to his parent’s bedroom, pleading, pulling on his father to catch the monster, the creature escaped before they returned, making Ankar look dumb.

Ankar wouldn’t let the monster get away this time.

The hangars behind the door clattered against each other. Ankar was sure of it: something rustled amongst his clothes.

He launched himself off his bed.

He walked toward his door.

Ankar was brave. Ankar was scared. He was ready to run should that closet door open without him.

Having crossed the floor, Ankar stood before his closet door.

His bedroom door was open and the dim light from the hall gave him courage. He wasn’t entirely in the dark. Not like he was on his bed.

As quietly as he could, Ankar gripped the closet door handle and slowly, as noiselessly as possible, he turned it.

The door came forward from its frame a bit. It was now or never.

Ankar opened his closet door wide.

Blackness, nothing but dark in his closet.

He couldn’t even see his clothes. Ankar nearly sighed in frustration. Fooled again.

Then he thought, ‘Wait. There’s enough light here. Why can’t I see my clothes?’

His small body trembled without chill at the thought. Apprehensively, he moved his head to look up at the darkness.

The hideous white face at the top, nearly glowing, smiled down at him.

This was not a friendly smiling face: not Benevolent but Malevolent.

This was the creature from the movie. His monster: Nosferatu.

Ankar wanted to run, but feared he’d be caught too easily and whatever the monster had in mind, it would be so much worse if he ran.

But he had to do something!

“My Pop says you’re not real.”

The creature’s consummately confident, predatory smile faltered and froze. Its wild hairy eyebrows drew in with concern for but a moment. Then it regained its composure.

“But,” it grinned. “What does your Mother say?”

“She told me to ask my Pop.”

The Nosferatu’s features slightly crumbled again. This was apparently – not good news. Once again it thought a happy thought – a thought that was happy for it – and its evil smile returned.

“Yet here we are,” the thing grinned, so wide that its prominent, ratty teeth, came out. “So all that really matters is, what do you think?”

The question chilled Ankar into shivering. The creature’s two front teeth were long and sharp as needles. Neither his Mom or Pop were here to protect him from something that wasn’t real, and here was something that looked very real!

“I think-“

“Yesss?” The creature interrupted him, dragging out the word, the smile stretching.

Doubtfully Ankar continued, “- under the circumstances -“

“Ye-ess?” the creature interrupted again, drawing its white, hideously clawed hands out from where it had hid them in its sleeves. It fanned its long fingers out, the razor claws slicing the air into whispers. Each claw pointed toward Ankar’s face.

“I think I should do what my Pop says.” Ankar finished.

“Oh shi-!” The creature began and popped out of existence.

Surprised that it worked, Ankar stared dumbfounded at the clothes in his closet.

A shadow fell across him and he looked toward the hall.

His Pop came to a stop in front of his son’s bedroom door. The father’s hair was pillow pulled into bed head, a bristle of beard growth on his face, his eyes squinting in half sleep. He held a glass of water. Father looked at son awake in the middle of the night and standing in front of his open closet. He sussed the situation.

“Monsters again?”

“Yeah sir.”

“Did you say what I told you?”

“Yeah sir.”

“Did it work?”

With wonder, for Ankar was effectively surprised that it did, he said, “Yeah!”

Ankar’s Pop made a Click-Click sound with his cheek, pointed his index finger at his son with a thumb’s up, and said.

“Told ya.”

Ankar turned to stare at his amazing, pudgy hero, as Pop closed the door against the light. Standing in the dark he heard his hero say,

“Now go to bed.”

END

FIRST MONSTER, copyright 2013, E.C. McMullen Jr.
Artwork: FIRST MONSTER. Artist, Feo Amante.
Music while writing,
Edvard Grieg – In The Hall Of Mountain King
http://youtu.be/hDi8Smb4KeI

If you enjoyed this short story, watch the further adventures of Ankar in the online short film, THE NIGHT MY MONSTER DIED.

Then read more about Ankar in, CEDO LOOKED LIKE PEOPLE, in the anthology Fear The Reaper, edited by Joe Mynhardt. Available in Print and eBook at Amazon and Barnes & Noble!

“Cedo Looked Like People” – E.C. McMullen Jr.: A boy’s strange next door night- and day-divided neighbors make for equally strange – and later disturbing – friendships. This Ray Bradbury-esque is one of the most memorable and one of the more original stories I’ve read in a long time.”
- Amazon Reviewer


image descriptionWant more? Get my book
PERPETUAL BULLET: A Science Fiction Collection
A trove of previously published Science Fiction Horror Thriller – plus bonus stories
Featuring: Weird Sex, True Love, Monsters and Mayhem!
By E.C. McMullen Jr.
Now on sale for $2.99 and available for your Android Tablet, iPad, Kindle, Nook, and every other “E”!
Find it at (Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Diesel, !ndigo, iTunes, KoboBooks, Smashwords, WHSmith, and more).

Also look for my story Cedo Looked Like People, in the 2013 anthology, FEAR THE REAPER, edited by Joe Mynhardt and available in Paperback and eBook.

WRETCHED REBIRTH

WRETCHED REBIRTH
by E.C. McMullen Jr.
Copyright 2014

Room7 by MyNameIsSwann

Consciousness came abruptly for Alph but self-awareness took time.

Between the two was survival instinct. Alph had no idea where he was, who he was (besides his name), or any concept of past except for the rapidly ticking seconds becoming memory. All he knew at the conscious moment of life, was that he was quickly experiencing death.

He “woke up” laying half submerged in a pool of wet something he couldn’t describe.

His stomach was gripping itself in knots and he didn’t know if it was due to birth or death, but he didn’t like it. He formed, he was born, but something went – was going – all wrong.

Obeying the physical impetus to do so, he vomited violently.

His vomit swirled in the pool and the swirls formed almost immediately upon leaving his mouth.

The heavier vomit strung out into the liquid and coalesced into limbs and a second head. He was puking a second body into his first and the two were forming simultaneously.

Alph’s two heads looked at each other and it wasn’t good news. The presence of the pool somehow stuck them to each other and the wall of the dark room they found themselves in.

What little the Siamese Alphs knew, was that they had to escape this prison, and they couldn’t do that in their current form. Vomiting produced themselves, so they had to repurpose what they already were into a third, independent member.

They had to make sure they didn’t botch it and create a conjoined triplet.

Alphs would need to be smart about this.

They raised themselves as high as they could stand from the pool and floor. Together they began projectile vomiting a third Alph. One that could grow without attaching itself to them.

It wasn’t easy. As the third Alph formed the two Alphs kept raising themselves higher and higher, practically crawling up the wall they were anchored to, to avoid contact.

Vomiting cannibalized their bodies. They were eating themselves from the inside out. This was exhausting torment but it would be all right in the end. Something told the two Alphs that their current incarnation was a mistake. Once they were a single Alph, they would be in a better position to …

Their minds were gone, dregs of spittle drooling from mindless mouths into a new Alph already gaining consciousness.

The new, third Alph looked upon his dripping skeletal remains. He didn’t know why he originally thought this was the method of his creation, he only did and, with that knowledge, he knew what he had to do before his dead old remains spoiled.

Alph rapidly devoured his emptied twin corpse until there was nothing left.

At last he was whole: whole and still hungry.

Blinking in the dark, he spied a light at the far end of the tunnel. There was no way to go but forward, as staying in the stench of his own birth didn’t seem an option.

Bent over on all fours, for there was no room to stand erect, Alph’s long limbs pulled the distance toward and behind him.

‘Forward. I’m propelling myself forward,’ he thought.

Thoughts kept entering his mind without the structure of memory to support them.

‘I was created somehow.’

‘I was once a living … thing… no, man… once. I died, maybe?’

No likely; no definitely, I was killed.’

He wasn’t too clear on exactly how he was wronged, but something told him that his new birth was actually a rebirth.

‘Something or someone killed me. Something or someone brought me back.’

Self-Awareness came and with it, a primitive strategy. Alph wanted justice for what he had just experienced.

I don’t know if it was by a random Something or an intentional Someone, but…’

His neurons were quickly growing and connecting. Ganglia was rapidly assembling a scaffold of memory in his newly formed brain.

‘… but if it turns out that Some One put me through all of this disgusting birth agony,’

The mental scaffold grew in complexity.

‘…they had better have a good reason.’

The ganglia built upon the scaffolding, creating cross-support structure, and thinking became reasoning.

‘Yes, that someone may have their *own* reasons, but…’

‘…but they had damn well better appeal to MY sense of reason.’

The imprint on every thought, however, was justice. He wasn’t clear on why he wanted revenge or who had vengeance coming to them, but he was already thinking of how it would be meted out.

Alphonse moved down the tunnel, toward the light. A newborn with a thirst for justice, and murder on its mind.

END

Wretched Rebirth, copyright 2014, E.C. McMullen Jr.
Artwork: Room 7. Artist, Asya Yordanova, MyNameIsSwann.DaPortfolio, MyNameIsSwann.DeviantArt.


image descriptionWant more? Get my book
PERPETUAL BULLET: A Science Fiction Collection
A trove of previously published Science Fiction Horror Thriller – plus bonus stories
Featuring: Weird Sex, True Love, Monsters and Mayhem!
By E.C. McMullen Jr.
Now on sale for $2.99 and available for your Android Tablet, iPad, Kindle, Nook, and every other “E”!
Find it at (Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Diesel, !ndigo, iTunes, KoboBooks, Smashwords, WHSmith, and more).

Also look for my story Cedo Looked Like People, in the 2013 anthology, FEAR THE REAPER, edited by Joe Mynhardt and available in Paperback and eBook.

FAITHFUL, BETRAYED, BELIEVER

Eschatos by Leoncio-Harmr

Eschatos by Leoncio-Harmr

FAITHFUL, BETRAYED, BELIEVER
by E.C. McMullen Jr.
Copyright 2014

“It doesn’t make sense,” my grandchild said.

She watched the devout make their way toward the last church.

“This,” I told her, “is the aftermath of Christianity.”

“But why would anyone go when they know there is no God?”

“They aren’t going for God,” I said, coughing on the word.

“During the war, when the Vatican was ransacked and its libraries were exposed, the entire world discovered the complete lineage of lies they had kept. The creation of God. The creation of Jesus, Satan, even the Prophet Mohammed. The exposure of the Catholic lies exposed all Christian, Jewish, and Islamic lies.

Which left the faithful adrift, the war crumbled in on itself, and people – “

“I know all of that Grandpa,” she interrupted irritably. “So why would anyone still go to church?”

“To understand the present you have to know its history,” I said, and cleared my throat. “Churches, Synagogues, and Temples by the millions were destroyed. Beautiful art and antiquities were lost forever in the aftermath of betrayed rage. The once Faithful became the Betrayed

There are no gods and likely never were.

So there was this one church, Souls of the Sea. The Betrayed came for it too: To plunder its treasures and obliterate it from the earth. Then in the sight of the gathered rapists, the great silver cross above the entrance lit up with an intense white fire. As now, the cross could be seen through night and storm from a hundred miles away. Then as now, it burned with an intensity that neither melted the metal or cracked the stone.

Just as now, clouds encircled the Souls of the Sea, the ocean embraced it, and engineers with their technology came to measure the dynamic energy so focused upon it.”

“What was it?” my granddaughter whispered.

“Lost Souls. The condensed energy of the faithful who died yet found no afterlife to escape to. The destruction of so many churches throughout the world made them flee to the ones that remained, until only this one was left. The combined life force of thousands and thousands of years of billions upon billions of souls with nowhere else to go, yet forever fueled by an omnipresent sun, all stream here to infuse the Souls of the Sea.”

She took that in for a moment as we walked toward the church and the pilgrims slowly, with measured step, moved around us.

I cleared my throat. “It’s become, in a sense, a lighthouse.”

“So all of these people go to church and don’t believe in god?”

“Yes,” I answered. “These people aren’t god’s Faithful, they have no use for faith or god. But they aren’t the Betrayed anymore, either. These are Believers. They believe the proof that our souls exist. They all come to here to visit and pay respect to their living dead.”

My beloved grandchild’s hand shrunk back in mine, as if ready to pull from me and flee.

She stuttered, panic edging into her voice. “Why have you brought me here, Grandpa?”

I spoke with gentle assurance.

“I heard your Mother call to me last night,” I said. “She yearns to see you, and it’s time you met her.”

Looking at the church with new knowledge, my grandchild was reluctant with fear, but the curiosity growing in her expression was profound.

I stopped to give her a moment. She swallowed, took a deep breath, and held herself bravely. Only my breathing rattled in the silence. She looked up at me.

“You won’t leave me?”

I coughed and cleared my throat. “I won’t leave you in the church,” I said. “But I won’t be leaving the church with you.”

Her features were at first confused, then stricken.

I nodded.

END

Story by E.C. McMullen Jr.

The Art Inspires the Story -

Artwork Eschatos by Leoncio-Harmr on deviantART

I listened to Eventide by Jennifer Thomas
http://youtu.be/eRWJam9C3FI


image descriptionWant more? Get my book
PERPETUAL BULLET: A Science Fiction Collection
A trove of previously published Science Fiction Horror Thriller – plus bonus stories
Featuring: Weird Sex, True Love, Monsters and Mayhem!
By E.C. McMullen Jr.
Now on sale for $2.99 and available for your Android Tablet, iPad, Kindle, Nook, and every other “E”!
Find it at (Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Diesel, !ndigo, iTunes, KoboBooks, Smashwords, WHSmith, and more).

Also look for my story Cedo Looked Like People, in the 2013 anthology, FEAR THE REAPER, edited by Joe Mynhardt and available in Paperback and eBook.

MULTIMEDIA

“Multimedia is any combination of text, graphic art, sound, animation, and video that is delivered by computer.”
– Tay Vaughan, Multimedia: Making It Work, 1993

The author at the Zapotec ruins of Mitla, Oaxaca, Mexico

The author at the Zapotec ruins of Mitla, Oaxaca, Mexico

For over two decades, the United States, then the rest of the world, entered the era of Internet Multimedia. This Information Age, which came into its own ten years ago with the advent of high-speed Internet (and thus online videos became a practicality) is talked about, used, monetized, but understood by few.

Any one of us can rattle off the handful of companies that grew huge by offering multimedia. They are the ones who either understood it, or guided its creation.

Most companies that fall outside of the big five want to grasp multimedia, but they don’t understand it.

Of course Multimedia is attractive because you, me, and nearly everyone else uses it (on our laptops, tablets, iPhones and Androids). We use it like a Driver uses a car. So businesses large and small want to get their share of the pie and sell it, like a Salesperson sells a car. But many small businesses (and quite a few large ones) don’t understand it they way they need to: like a Mechanic understands a car.

What holds these businesses back is, they don’t know how to hire that mechanic.

As graphic artists have expanded into multimedia, they find themselves growing right out of a job market that desires them (and many are creating their boutique businesses).

For Example -

Small business High-End press and print shops want a piece of the multimedia pie.

Advertising and Marketing agencies want a piece of the multimedia pie.

Magazines and Newspapers, awkwardly attempting the money hemorrhaging transition to an profitable online business model, want a piece of the multimedia pie.

Even cable companies and local television stations – who should be on top of this better than anyone – want a piece of the multimedia pie as their customers abandon premium Cable TV for streaming Internet (a service cable companies also provide, yet are having difficulty monetizing to meet their aging business model).

There is an awful lot of pie there and it is growing. And so many companies are watching their clients leave them for that pie, when there is only one thing stopping such companies from offering it.

The Problem -

In a recent conversation, a friend in the high tech Internet industry revealed (to his own surprise) the problem.

Companies are thirsting for people who have such multimedia knowledge.

Then they read the resumes of such people: People who grasp multimedia are proficient in Graphic Art as it relates to Print.

- BUT -

Such people are also proficient in front-end Web Design.

- BUT -

Such people are also proficient in theatrical, stage, Commercial, and/or Broadcast Video.

In today’s reality, these are all the foundations of a multimedia artist.

And such a large umbrella of proficiency frightens the companies who want to hire multimedia artists, because the management of such companies don’t understand what they want. To the hiring manager of a company who needs multimedia to survive, the resumes of multimedia artists appear unfocused: they’re all over the place! They aren’t experts in anything!

Such companies don’t understand that any person who can seamlessly, repeatedly, transition their work from Print to Broadcast to Internet, and make money doing it, IS a focused expert. One with a formidable set of skills in today’s marketplace.

And more: they are an Adaptable Focused Expert. You won’t find such people still stuck using 2008 technology.

Prove it -

Major software companies like Adobe, get this. Adobe is the Number One selling software used by professionals in Print, Broadcast, and Internet. The Adobe software suites reflect this. The companies that are in Print, Broadcast, and Internet buy Adobe products.

Yet even though companies buy multimedia suites from companies like Adobe, they are still wary of someone who understands how to use the full multimedia suite.

Adobe Gets It.

The biggest magazine for web designers is named, aptly enough, Web Designer.

In addition to the latest updated articles on coding in HTML5, CSS3, JQuery, PHP, and WordPress (as you’d expect), Web Designer also contains a constant trove of articles on graphics: textures, creating gifs pixel by pixel, site design, RWD (I hope you or your department head already understands – not just knows, but understands – what RWD, Foundation5, and Bootstrap is. Your “unfocused” multimedia artist does), and why the RICG community group* is as vitally important to cross platform multimedia graphic artists as the JPEG, MPEG, GIF, and PNG development groups.

And…? Web Designer tells web designers what they need to know in online Multimedia.

In short, Web Designer Gets It.

Does your department head not simply know of RWD, but understand its use and value? Can he or she easily explain why you do and don’t want it and if you do or don’t need it, based entirely on your specific desires for your business?

The Information Age is for the User. The Multimedia Age is for the Provider.

Multimedia is smoothly grafting a new hybrid of the former stand alone businesses of Print, Broadcast, and Internet into one. You can successfully choose to remain a stand-alone vendor of a specific part of that, but you cannot hope to remain ignorant of what your new function requires of you, and expect to carry on, business as usual. Why?

Because You cannot stop multimedia. And the reason you can’t is because You and nearly everyone else wants it. Companies that resist it, are already finding themselves fading away. Former giants are evaporating (Alphagraphics) and many others are already gone forever. In fact, just by reading this paragraph, several former household names have probably already passed through your mind.

The Peter Principle

Laurence J. Peter and Raymond Hull’s THE PETER PRINCIPLE

Print – Broadcast – Internet

Perhaps your company is just one of these things. Maybe you are a high-end print shop and will never be a broadcaster or run a major website. You believe you need someone who isn’t a Jack-of-All-Trades, but has a thorough, focused, in-depth knowledge of Print.

Yet you also want to take orders online. So you need a dedicated IT department to handle your online presence, security, and orders. Again, you want your IT employees to have a thorough, focused, in-depth knowledge of the Internet.

That calls for helpful online videos that will guide potential customers through the myriad of services you offer, so they won’t get lost or look elsewhere. Videos that look and sound professional, with professional, camera friendly actors.

Yet you also need your focused IT department to understand how videos stream online, so they won’t bog down your servers or create long load times for the potential client. Website visitors (like you and me) are notoriously impatient when it comes to waiting for a website to appear in our browser.

So you hire your Print expert(s), who doesn’t understand Internet or Broadcasting. You hire your IT expert(s), who doesn’t understand Print or Broadcasting. And you contract out a vendor to shoot a few instructional, helpful videos.

Now who do you hire to make all of these different experts work together as a cohesive unit?

Who at your company is going to make sure that you have the servers (or hosting service) that will handle the videos?
How will you insure that your high definition videos will smoothly stream on any platform and device (if you don’t know what I mean by platform or device, you are in seriously bad shape already. The sharks have spotted you and are heading your way)?
How are you going to make sure that your client’s coveted company color in print (Pantone 485 C), will translate to compressed RGB jpeg, gif, and/or png  in Internet? And then further translate to lossy compressed animated RGB mpeg in video, crushed down further for quick loading?

How will you hire someone like that to orchestrate your departments, smoothly mediate all issues (and foresee them), when your thought process is fixed on the idea that such people are unfocused, Jack-Of-All-Trade non-experts?

It’s a well-known, yet still tragic failure of companies to hire experts for their departments, then have that group of experts managed by someone who has No Idea of how their own department works. In fact, it is such a flawed ingrained corporate policy in business: a failure that resonates with so many people in the workplace, it has become the joke in popular movies and TV shows (OFFICE SPACE [1999], THE OFFICE [2001 - 2013, televised in both the UK and the US], THE IT CROWD [2006 - 2013, televised in both the UK and US]), and the long running comic strip DILBERT.

Like Laurence J. Peter and  Raymond Hull’s 1969 book, THE PETER PRINCIPLE: Why Things Always Go Wrong, or Scott Adams’ 1996 book, THE DILBERT PRINCIPLE, the fact that a problem is recognized and laughed about does nothing to end its existence.

There are Those  Who Get It, But Their Success is Not Contagious -

Amazon, without a single brick and mortar bookstore, grew and ate the lunch of every other single bookstore nationwide. Major bookstores that should have known better, and had plenty of years to adapt to the new business model, collapsed. And these bookstores collapsed all the while Jeff Bezos was telling anyone who would listen, what he was doing and how he would go about doing it.

Then Amazon went on to music stores and succeeded in selling millions of CDs at a time when people were buying MP3s: Selling millions of DVDs at a time when people were streaming more.

Amazon got it where the experts, Tower and Borders didn’t, and Barnes & Noble still does not. Unfortunately for the management of Barnes & Noble, they’ve spent well over a decade, and three CEOs, looking at What Amazon does and How they do it, and Why they do it – yet B&N still Does Not Get It. What a waste of over 125 years of expertise in the book selling business. For some time now, Amazon’s success allowed them to expand beyond books into music and video and more. Meanwhile B&N shut down their store’s music and video departments and recently ended their eBook reader, NOOK (largely beaten by Amazon’s Kindle).

Netflix gets it where the experts, Hollywood Video and Blockbuster did not.

Even brick and mortar stores like the burgeoning Frys and Microcenter gets it where experts like Circuit City and Computer City didn’t and Best Buy still does not.

Radio Shack, which had the jump on all of them and sold the same products, has been mismanaged for so long it is going the way of Blockbuster and Best Buy (Radio Shack stock down 40% so far this year – 2014 – and has or is closing 1,300 stores by July of 2014).
money.cnn.com/2014/06/10/investing/radioshack-earnings-close-stores

Still, with all of this evidence – every bit of it – so many small and large business leaders watch the slow demise of these former giants of the corporate world, and don’t recognize that they are circling the same drain.

Meanwhile, Print shop Graphic Artists who have expanded their work into motion pictures or commercial broadcast, and Internet, aren’t resting on their laurels. HTML5 and CSS3, in combination with PHP and JQuery, are taking bite after bite out of Java, JavaScript, and Flash. The method of presenting multimedia is changing (and always will). Adobe Flash gurus are adapting to the change or becoming dinosaurs.

You cannot take today’s reality of Multimedia and retrofit it to the archival legacy of a 1980s, 1990s, or 2000s business model. Attempting to do so is gutting your company, even while you watch your competition succeed.

If you are one of those business owners who desire multimedia, yet fear that Multimedia professionals are unfocused, you need to understand where the focus really is. Quickly.

Adapt to Change.

*doubtful that changes of any importance to the Internet or multimedia, could be wrought by a mere “community group”? You should know that the W3C is now working with the RICG community group, and Tab Atkins Jr. of Google is one of their specification editors.

- E.C. McMullen Jr.
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image descriptionWant more? Get my book
PERPETUAL BULLET: A Science Fiction Collection
A trove of previously published Science Fiction Horror Thriller – plus bonus stories
Featuring: Weird Sex, True Love, Monsters and Mayhem!
By E.C. McMullen Jr.
Now on sale for $2.99 and available for your Android Tablet, iPad, Kindle, Nook, and every other “E”!
Find it at (Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Diesel, !ndigo, iTunes, KoboBooks, SmashwordsWHSmith, and more).

Also look for my story Cedo Looked Like People, in the 2013 anthology, FEAR THE REAPER, edited by Joe Mynhardt and available in Paperback and eBook.

VIKINGS vs WATER DRAGON

Viking-seas

Viking Seas by Santos Garijo

VIKINGS vs WATER DRAGON
Copyright 2014 by E.C. McMullen Jr.

Norse Captain: “Ha, HA! Foul sea creature! We have you know!”
Water Dragon: “YOU MEAN YOU HAVE ME, NOW ?”
Norse Captain: “Huh? … Oh! Yes! We have you now!”
Water Dragon: “YOU’RE 300 YARDS AWAY AND NO ONE IS ROWING. HOW, PRAY TELL, DO YOU HAVE ME NOW?”
Norse Chief: “The Great Wizard enchanted our swords and axes to pierce your flesh and claim your heart! Ha! HA!

( All the Norsemen ): “Ha! HAA!!!”

Water Dragon: “Tcha!  WHAT GREAT WIZARD?”
Norse Chief: “Gustafson!”
Water Dragon: “WHOA! THE GUSTAFSON?”
Norse Captain: “The Same!”
Water Dragon: “WOW THAT’S PRETTY IMPRES… NO WAIT A MINUTE. WHAT AM I THINKING? YOU POOR FOOLS, IN YOUR SIX SHIELD DINKY DINGHY, CAN’T EVEN BUY A WARSHIP. YOU CAN’T AFFORD THE GREAT WIZARD GUSTAFSON!”
Norse Chief: “We honored the price of our-“
Norse Captain: “Let me handle this.”
Norse Chief: “You’re the Captain.”
Norse Captain: “We vouchsafed his magics with the liberty of our village!”
Water Dragon: “YOU IDIOTS ENSLAVED YOUR VILLAGE TO A GREAT WIZARD? FOR MAGIC SWORDS?!?
Norse Captain: “Ah! But what Gustafson really wants are a Dragon’s teeth and heart!”
Water Dragon: “NOW I GET IT.”
Norse Captain: “So come at us, Dragon! And meet thy doom this day!”

( All the Norsemen ): “Ha! HAA!!!”

Water Dragon: “NO.”

( Moment of shocked silence. The dragon’s reaction was clearly never considered )

Norse Captain: “Whhu- Wha- What?”
Water Dragon: “AS IN: NAH, NOT INTERESTED.”
Norse Captain:
“I’ve challenged you! You can’t refuse a challenge!”
Water Dragon: “YOU’RE NOTHING BUT BEARDED MONKEYS FLOATING IN A WOODEN HAT.
Norse Chief: “Whoa! Hey now!”
Water Dragon: “THERE’S NO CHALLENGE.”
Norse Captain: “Buh – buh –  But you must! You ha- have to! The wizard! He’ll…! Whew! …er… Fight you COWARD!”
Water Dragon: “AND IF YOU WERE A THREAT, THAT MIGHT MEAN SOMETHING. LATERS.”

Water Dragon vanishes beneath the waves.

Norse Captain: “No wait!”
Norse Chief: “Come back!”

The Norse captain stares at the air where the dragon was. He looks at the water where the dragon vanished. His magic sword drops to the deck of the dinghy as he sits down hard.

The little boat rocks alone on the waves of the sea. The Norse captain stares out at nothing.

Clouds pass overhead. Finally,

Norse Warrior 1: “It’s not coming back.”
Norse Warrior 2: “We are Fucked!”
Norse Chief: “Uh… belay that.”
Norse Warrior 2: “We are *SO* fucked!”
Norse Chief: “I said-!”
Norse Warrior 1: “We have nothing left to BARTER!”
Norse Warrior 2: “The wizard will ENSLAVE us!”
Norse Warrior 1: “With the rest of our Village as soon as we RETURN!”
Norse Chief: “Well. Ah…mm…  yeah. …Yep. Any ideas, Captain?”
Norse Captain ( looks blankly out over the rolling, empty sea ): ” . . . “
Norse Chief: “Captain?”
Norse Captain: “Anyone speak French?”

END

Story by E.C. McMullen Jr.

Artwork, Viking Seas, by Santos Garijo.


image descriptionWant more? Get my book
PERPETUAL BULLET: A Science Fiction Collection
A trove of previously published Science Fiction Horror Thriller – plus bonus stories
Featuring: Weird Sex, True Love, Monsters and Mayhem!
By E.C. McMullen Jr.
Now on sale for $2.99 and available for your Android Tablet, iPad, Kindle, Nook, and every other “E”!
Find it at (Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Diesel, !ndigo, iTunes, KoboBooks, Smashwords, WHSmith, and more).

Also look for my story Cedo Looked Like People, in the 2013 anthology, FEAR THE REAPER, edited by Joe Mynhardt and available in Paperback and eBook.

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