Based on my interactions with friends, students, and fans, at conventions, meetups, and in general social situations, I’ve come up with the following list of Dos and Don’ts for networking within the industry. While a lot of this is common sense, I’ve found that our field seems to be a place where enthusiasm (or general awkwardness) often trumps formality. If you’ve been looking for a push in the right direction – and want to ensure you’re seen as the potential colleague, rather than the creepy fan or friend-wannabe, check out the tips (inside).
A couple of years ago, my awesome friend Jorge lent me a book. (Excited yet? You should be.) It was titled, God’s Demon which piqued my curiosity not only because of the name, but also the way the pages rippled from repeated fondling. (You’re sick if you thought anything other than reading. This is a family site, people. No, not really. Skeet!)
So, anyway this book, it’s good. You should read it when you want something in your hands beside your game controller. Ahem, let’s be serious now, shall we?
As the story opens, you’re transported to Hell. You embark on a deep, emotional journey of redemption complete with savagery and longing. As a demon, you have been cast out of Heaven never to be with God, yet you can’t think of anything you’ve ever wanted more. Can you even hope to be forgiven? If you rid Hell of its most evil residents, will you be saved?
To be fair, I am a fan of religious texts and ancient lore, so this book is right up my alley, but it absolutely appeals to those who may not enjoy the pastime of researching demonology. The author, Wayne Barlowe, is a master world-builder who skillfully weaves action, angst, love and strife together to create an epic tale. The world is so vivid I felt as if I could breathe in the ashen air and hear the commotion of Lesser Demons.
Here’s what Publisher’s Weekly has to say about it:
“Best known for extraordinarily imaginative fantasy art, Barlowe (Barlowe’s Guide to Extraterrestrials) now sets his talents to writing equally compelling speculative fiction. Inspired by Paradise Lost, Barlowe conjures up the creatures who sided with Lucifer and were ejected from heaven, thrown down into Hell to become freakishly mangled demons. After innumerable eons of exile, the demon Sargatanas has started to dream of being reunited with God. Sargatanas amasses an army to aid him in overthrowing Lucifer’s regent, Beelzebub, in an attempt to catch God’s eye. In a flash of inspiration, Sargatanas adds human souls to his army, under the direction of Hannibal. Together, human sinners and once-rebellious demons unite to vanquish Beelzebub in an all-out war. Barlowe’s interpretation is not for the squeamish, with its horrifically explicit descriptions of demonic behavior, but it’s a compelling view of Hell and of a demon who seeks redemption.” PUBLISHERS WEEKLY – August 2007
If you’re looking for something to read over your summer vacation or for some excitement to squeeze into your cubicle-laden existence, God’s Demon is for you. Take it from me, your friend. As Jorge did for me, I am passing this amazing find on to you. Cheers! Here’s a link to the author’s site: Wayne Barlowe
Writer. Snowboarder. Video game proselytizer. All-around nerd and animal lover. During the day, you can find Hilary working as a marketing director for an international software company and at night (where is this going?), she squeezes in as much time as possible with her Xbox or Kindle. If you feel so inclined from reading this awkward description to find out more about her, go here: www.hilaryshapiro.com or @hilaryheskett Oh, and she is Gunny from Crabcat!