THE BIMBORG: Out soon in paperback!

Final BIMBORG cover

Cover art rendered by Doug Sturk a.k.a. Sturkwurk

The proofs have been approved. Within a few days, the print-on-demand printer (CreateSpace) will upload the information to Amazon, and Amazon will create a page for the paperback version of my Star Trek parody.

The bad news: The cost for the U.S. edition will be thirteen bucks (plus shipping). And no, I won’t be making oodles of money at that price. In fact, I’ll pocket more money if you buy the Kindle version for six bucks.

The good news is, this way you can read my novel after a hurricane, or any other time there’s an extended power outage in your area.

The other good news is: The paperback is (soon to be) out and expensive, but at least it’s out. In the old days, when my choices would have been a) to pay to print out five hundred offset-print copies, have the five hundred books shipped to me, and then I store all five hundred books in my garage; or b) fuhgeddaboudit—well, this book would never exist in dead-tree form if those were my only two choices.

2013.03.28 breaking news: The paperback is up!

Want to see the original front cover and read the back-cover blurb?

Want to read the first three chapters?

EDIT: Added 2013.05.03—
Buy The Bimborg now! You know you want to.

Paperback
Kindle
Kobo EPUB
NOOK EPUB

EDIT: Added 2013.12.22—
Apple iTunes Bookstore

EDIT: Added 2014.06.27—
Page Foundry/Inktera EPUB

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How and Why I Wrote It: THE BIMBORG

Final BIMBORG cover

Cover art rendered by Doug Sturk a.k.a. Sturkwurk

Part One—the “Star Trek” TV shows.

I’ve watched every episode of every version of “Star Trek,” except for the Jonathan Archer prequel, which I came to loathe. While “Star Trek: The Original Series” sometimes has had poorly-written episodes (“Spock’s Brain”), the best-written TV episodes that I have ever seen, on any show I have ever watched, have been episodes of “Star Trek: The Next Generation.” But all of the “Star Trek” series (except for the abortion) were well written.

But let’s face it, “Star Trek: The Original Series,” despite its generally excellent writing, had its flaws and weaknesses. The diktat from the Suits Upstairs was that Roddenberry never kill off the main characters, which killed the suspense. Of course, the main characters wouldn’t be in any danger if Captain Kirk followed real-world military protocols and all the senior officers stayed safely on the ship. But nope, every week Kirk had to form the senior officers into an Away Team that boldly went straight into a dangerous situation. Somehow, though, Kirk, Spock, and McCoy never got killed. But the unfortunate security officers on the Away Team, whose uniform was a red velour pullover shirt? Killed every time, and before the next commercial.

On “Star Trek: The Original Series,” it wasn’t unusual to find both brilliant writing and bonehead writing in the same episode.

Part Two—the 1996 movie.

In 1996 I was watching Star Trek: First Contact in a movie theater. Starting about ten minutes into the movie, there was this sequence—

• Just beyond Earth’s atmosphere, the Enterprise and other Starfleet ships are fighting a Borg cube.

• Captain Picard takes command of the fleet and tells the ships to target a certain part of the Borg cube. All the Starfleet ships phaser that one spot.

• The Borg cube starts coming apart; shortly thereafter, it blows up.

• Just before the cube blows up, a portal opens, and out comes a sphere-shaped spacecraft. The Borg sphere heads straight toward Earth.

• The Enterprise chases after the Borg sphere. All the other Starfleet ships take a coffee break.

• The Borg sphere creates a time vortex.

• Right when the Enterprise gets to the lip of the time vortex, the Borg sphere disappears.

• Earth of the 24th century is changed. Earth now is a planet of “nine billion inhabitants, all Borg.”

• The Enterprise enters the time vortex, goes back to the year 2063, and the movie continues.

I saw that part of the movie and I thought, “[Nonsense]. One Borg sphere, with no backup, with only a few hundred or a few thousand Borg drones, could eventually assimilate nine billion people, defeating every 2063 military organization on Earth along the way? Impossible.”

Part Three—my “Bimborg” short stories.

In 2009 I was writing erotic mind-control stories for MCStories.com. I got to thinking, “Suppose there were a mad-scientist character, who could invent any kind of technology or could modify anyone else’s technology, and who was utterly lacking in conscience. What would he do if he found a Borg corpse?”

The answer I came up with, after he’d looted the corpse (because after all, he was without conscience), was that he’d modify those nanoprobes to make women into his sex slaves. So I wrote “The Bimborg” as a “stroke story,” and posted it at MCStories. Most of that story became most of Part One of this novel.

The title, by the way, is a portmanteau of Bimbo + Cyborg, or Bimbo + Borg. Take your pick.

Anyway, in 2011 I came back to the Bimborg idea, with a slightly different variant:

Suppose all the hot girls in a place were turned into bimborg, but instead of having sex with their “king,” they were ordered to have sex with a heroic man? What if neither the heroic man nor anyone else in town knew the real reason these women were having sex with him? How would he explain his sudden sexual windfall? How would onlookers explain it? Would women who weren’t bimborg now feel attracted to him?

And so was born would-be damsel-in-distress rescuer Charlie-Bob Owens.

In 2011 I posted Charlie-Bob’s tale at MCStories, as “Bimborg 2: Invasion of the Bawdy Snatch-Revelers.” That stroke story forms most of Part Two of my Bimborg novel.

Part Four—I decide: my “Bimborg” stories will expand into a full-length novel.

After I finished writing Three More Wishes, I went looking for another project, and it occurred to me that I could expand my two “Bimborg” stories into a full-length novel.

The central conflict for the novel was obvious from the start. If James, the mad-scientist character, had created bimborg by using technology stolen from evil cyborgs from the future, then bring back the evil Cybes from the future and have them start making trouble.

The hero for the novel also was obvious: Charlie-Bob Owens, who at the beginning of “Bimborg 2,” had gotten shot in the leg while trying to save the virtue of two damsels in distress.

Then it occurred to me that if I brought in evil cyborgs from the future, who were determined to turn everyone on Earth into one of them, that I had the very same situation that had bothered me so much about Star Trek: First Contact.

That’s when I decided to write a soft-porn parody of that part of Star Trek: First Contact.

Part Five—a parody doesn’t have to be funny, but it helps.

There already were parody elements in the “Bimborg” short stories. The first three women Welcomed (assimilated) into the bimborg hive, I named them Stephanie (sort-of rhymes with “Seven”), Annika, and Jeri. I mentioned a military officer named John Locutus Stewart. Then there’s this part—

After Stephanie’s insult during Thanksgiving dinner, I spent months in my workshop, rewriting all that nanobot programming.

But the nanobot hardware, this I left alone. Mechanical engineering in the 27th century is a wonder to behold, and comparing Cybe electronic engineering to what we have now? Resistors are feudal.

I guess at this point, I should define exactly what a parody is: A parody is a work B, written by an author AB, that is independent of a work A that is written by an author AA, but work B comments on work A. This is to distinguish a parody from a sequel/prequel, a fan-fiction story, and a normal fiction story.

A sequel (or prequel) is a work B by an author AA, that is set in the same universe as author AA’s earlier work A.

A fan-fiction story is a work B by an author AB that is set in the same universe as a work A by the originating author AA. Usually author AA, who is the copyright holder, neither explicitly grants permission nor explicitly denies permission for AB to write his fan-fiction story.

But usually, when two authors AA and AB each write a story, those stories are in every sense independent of each other, with different universes, different characters, and different plots. John Jakes’s North and South is not in any way connected to Margaret Mitchell’s Gone With The Wind, for instance.

But understand the differences between a parody and a fan-fiction: a parody has both story independence from another story, and it has commentary on that other story. Galaxy Quest isn’t set in the Star Trek universe—there is no Starfleet, and there are no Vulcans in Galaxy Quest—yet GQ is constantly making references to “Star Trek: The Original Series,” to William Shatner, and to Leonard Nimoy.

Part Six—I’ve written a parody.

First of all, The Bimborg meets the “independence” test. The Cybes have three specialties, whereas all Borg are the same. The Space Navy is inept compared to Starfleet, and Captain John Windham-Smythe definitely is not Jean-Luc Picard.

The Bimborg definitely meets the “references” test. There are numerous quotes from “Star Trek” movies—all taken out of context, and some are wildly out of context. I also borrow “Star Trek” characters’ names, such as with the two FBI agents Forrest McCoy and Leonard Spock. There is a running gag in the novel about “red shirts,” except that one woman figures out how to beat the Curse of the Deadly Red Shirt. (Read the novel to find out how!)

Part Seven—April 4th and 5th, 2063, I change the events from First Contact.

In the movie, the Borg sphere shows up on April 4th, 2063, the day before the historical event known as First Contact. Because of the successful Borg attacks, Zefram Cochrane never flies Warp Ship Phoenix, his converted ICBM missile, into space and then into warp; his now-nonexistent warp-drive signature is not noticed by the Vulcans; and so Vulcans don’t land a ship on Earth on April 5th, 2063. Three centuries later, all Earth people are Borg.

But then the Enterprise-E shows up in 2063, and the rest of the movie becomes about the battle to fix history.

In the end (big spoiler), history gets fixed and Zefram Cochrane shakes hands with a Vulcan man.

That’s the movie. My book plays things the exact opposite. In Chapter 3-I, the Cybes prevent Zefram Colburne from being born; so Zefram Colburne doesn’t demonstrate his “wormholer” for his neighbors on April 4th, 2063; so no Hephaistoans come visit Zefram Colburne (and Earth) on April 5th, 2063; and—that’s the ball game. The Space Navy gets de-caused, so there’s nobody to come from the future and rescue people of the 21st century from the marauding Cybes. If Earth is to be saved from the Cybes, only Charlie-Bob Owens and his bimborg can save the Earth.

Part Eight—Conclusion.

If you’ve already read The Bimborg, tell your friends about it.

If you haven’t bought it yet—for Pete’s sake, The Bimborg has sex scenes and it’s got “Star Trek,” so your continued delay is highly illogical.

Want to see the original front cover and read the back-cover blurb?

Want to read the first three chapters?

EDIT: Added 2013.05.03—
Buy The Bimborg now! You know you want to.

Paperback
Kindle
Kobo EPUB
NOOK EPUB

EDIT: Added 2013.12.22—
Apple iTunes Bookstore

EDIT: Added 2014.06.27—
Page Foundry/Inktera EPUB

For Sale: THE BIMBORG

Final BIMBORG cover

Cover art rendered by Doug Sturk a.k.a. Sturkwurk

Lots of news to share, after a year of working on The Bimborg: Part Nanobot, All Woman.

First of all, The Bimborg now is for sale as a Kindle.

Second of all: The Bimborg is soon to be for sale as a paperback. The PDF files for the bookblock (inside text) and the entire cover have been submitted to the print-on-demand printer. I’ve ordered a proof, which I expect to get within a week. If I disapprove the proof, it’ll be only because I don’t like how the cover turned out. More news as it becomes available.

Thirdly, all three of my books are for sale at the Barnes & Noble website in EPUB format. Here are the links:

Names Have Power
Three More Wishes
The Bimborg

Fourth: My books have been withdrawn from Google Play. Typically we were selling only one book a month. C’est la vie.

Fifth: This is the best “Star Trek” parody I’ve ever written. Okay, it’s also the only “Star Trek” parody I’ve ever written, but a man is allowed to brag sometimes, right?

Want to see the original front cover and read the back-cover blurb?

Want to read the first three chapters?

EDIT: Added 2013.05.03—
Buy The Bimborg now! You know you want to.

Paperback
Kindle
Kobo EPUB
NOOK EPUB

EDIT: Added 2013.12.22—
Apple iTunes Bookstore

EDIT: Added 2014.06.27—
Page Foundry/Inktera EPUB

Lots of Good News re THE BIMBORG

Final BIMBORG cover

Cover art rendered by Doug Sturk a.k.a. Sturkwurk

Things are going faster than I expected with the book. I expect that the PDF files will be uploaded to Kindle and to the print-on-demand printer within two weeks (meaning, before Feb. 26). I expect that the book will be available on Amazon and Google Play roughly a week after that.

Page count: That affects the cost of the paperback book, plus a bloated book isn’t as fun to read, so I really have wanted to reduce the page count.

Just by changing the font for most text from Times New Roman to Garamond, I reduced the page count from 398 to 379. But, that was the easy part.

By cutting out bloat, I’ve reduced the count by a further twelve pages. This is the part I’m proud of.

The cover of a book is designed as one big piece of cardstock paper, back cover-spine-front cover. Design on the cover can’t be finalized until the page count is finalized, because the spine thickness is proportional to the page count. What this means is that the cover won’t be finalized until the book text is finalized; but in the meantime, the front cover and the back cover can be designed. The final front-cover design is what you see above.

If the font for the book title looks vaguely familiar, it’s the same as the title font for the first five Star Trek movies. What an amazing coincidence.

Want to see the original front cover and read the back-cover blurb?

Want to read the first three chapters?

EDIT: Added 2013.05.03—
Buy The Bimborg now! You know you want to.

Paperback
Kindle
Kobo EPUB
NOOK EPUB

EDIT: Added 2013.12.22—
Apple iTunes Bookstore

EDIT: Added 2014.06.27—
Page Foundry/Inktera EPUB

Writing a “Star Trek” parody is harder than it looks

In my post of September 15th, I told you the sales blurb for my upcoming soft-core porn novel The Bimborg.

Now, I didn’t come out and say it was a “Star Trek” parody, but between the art and the sales blurb, Trekkies will figure this out.

Well, I’ve since come to figure out that if my novel is a “Star Trek” parody, then it has to be just like “Star Trek” in one respect: It has to have epic battles.

I’ve published two previous novels as Doctor MC. The climax in both Names Have Power and Three More Wishes involved the good guy fighting the bad guy in a one-against-one confrontation. But with Bimborg, I’m not revealing any big spoilers to tell you that at least once in the novel, Charlie-Bob Owens and the bimborg have to fight off a whole lot of evil Cybes.

You’ll have fun when you read the chapter(s). But writing Cybes-v.-bimborg chapters is hard.

The first reason is that I’ve never been a general or admiral, so it’s a challenge for me to make what happens when imaginary armies collide, be believable.

The second reason is that an army has more options than an individual has. So when I have an evil army fighting a good army, I have to consider many more plot options of how the battle could go.

The third reason is that the action during a big-battle chapter is supposed to be exciting, so I need to do more plotting per page. In the beginning of the novel, I can spread out my plot points to one per page or one per several pages; but in the big battle scenes, a plot point might only take up two paragraphs before another plot point hits.

But am I complaining, saying “The life of a novelist is oppressive”? Not at all.

Follow me a moment—

I as a reader don’t like literature or “Chick Lit” where the entire story is a bunch of people talking and crying. When I pick up a novel, I want things to happen!

When events happen in a novel, it’s because the novelist plotted those events to happen.

Well, I give a lot of thought to my plotting, and the result is that in my stories, exciting things just seem to happen. I take great pride in that.

I don’t neglect the emotional parts, though I make them secondary. In both Names Have Power and Three More Wishes, the hero doesn’t change much, but someone near to the hero changes for the better during the novel. In Names Have Power, that person is Susan Cooper; and in Three More Wishes, both Fatima the genie and Virgilia the stripper have personal-growth character arcs.

So shall it continue in The Bimborg. Wait till you see what happens to the high-school girl who is originally known as Nightshade the witch.

But to get back to my original point: Writing The Bimborg has turned out to be the biggest writing challenge I’ve ever taken. But IMNSHO, you “Star Trek” fans will be blown away by the results.

Want to see the front cover and read the back-cover blurb?

Want to read the first three chapters?

EDIT: Added 2013.05.03—
Buy my books now! You know you want to.

The Bimborg

Paperback
Kindle
Kobo EPUB
NOOK EPUB

EDIT: Added 2013.12.22—
Apple iTunes Bookstore

EDIT: Added 2014.06.27—
Page Foundry/Inktera EPUB

Three More Wishes: Be Kind To Your Genie

Kindle
Kobo EPUB
NOOK EPUB

EDIT: Added 2013.12.22—
Apple iTunes Bookstore

EDIT: Added 2014.06.27—
Page Foundry/Inktera EPUB

Names Have Power

Paperback
Kindle
Kobo EPUB
NOOK EPUB

EDIT: Added 2013.12.22—
Apple iTunes Bookstore

EDIT: Added 2014.06.27—
Page Foundry/Inktera EPUB