After a lot of effort, I cleaned up the forum to try again. There were over 2,000 users and over 8,000 posts, all spam. Rather than try to remove each of those users and all their posts by hand, I deleted the forum and its database, and started from scratch. I then configured Google’s reCaptcha v3 as a counter measure against future spammers, and we’ll see if it works.
Next up, more work on part two of the book. If you have read part one, and really want part two to get done, go sign up for an account in the forum and proceed to pester me into working on it more. I need the motivation. This is the one and only case where I invite people to harass me into doing something. Do your worst. 😉
But, do keep it clean. I mean, I want this to be a family friendly environment. 🙂
I’ve had to temporarily suspend new user registrations until I have time to set up a system that won’t allow spam bots to register. I apologize for any inconvenience. I will have it back up and running as soon as possible. Thank you for your patience.
EDIT: User registration has been enabled once more. I have made some changes that might block spammers from registering an account. I will test it tomorrow to see that it still allows a legitimate registration. It’s late, so it will have to wait. In the meantime, I’ll watch to see if any new spam users get through, which is the other half of this change that needs to work. Until then, good night.
EDIT EDIT: The changes I made did not work. I made further changes, and that seems to have taken care of the issue. I ended up plugging in Google’s captcha system. It works quite well. There have been no spam user registrations since I did that. Good job Google.
EDIT EDIT EDIT: (2020/03/01) Google sucks. I just removed over 2,000 user accounts that were spamming the board, and over 8,000 posts that were all spam. There were no legit posts by any legit users. I had to completely delete the forum from the server, delete its database, and rebuild it from scratch. There was no way I was going to go through and delete all of this manually. But now, with Google’s reCaptcha v3 running, maybe it won’t happen again. [crosses fingers]
A friend of mine has borrowed the Oak Ridge Apocalypse Zombie Trailer to move his fiancee to Tennessee. So, he and his brother just left for Minnesota. This will give the trailer, and then the website, great exposure across several states. Leave a comment if you have spotted it. Let me know where. I would also love to see pictures if it is safe to do so. Please don’t try to photograph it while driving. You can report sightings via Twitter with this hashtag. #OakRidgeApocTrailer
For several months I have been working on a project. It finally came to fruition today. I got some graphics installed on my trailer to advertise this site. The most amazing thing is the spike in traffic since putting the trailer on the road just a few hours ago. I went from getting almost no traffic, 1 or fewer views per day, to over a dozen since getting the trailer done. This is exciting for me.
If you see the trailer, take a selfie with it and tweet it out. I would love to see it. I guess we need a hash tag to go with this campaign. Leave your suggestions in the comments and I will adopt the most popular one.
Some time ago I said I was working on Part Two. That is still true. Well, life happened. The truck broke, a couple of times. The second time cost north of $1,000 to fix. Thankfully I believe I have it all sorted out, but it seriously delayed my plan to vinyl wrap a trailer to promote this site. The trailer is still sitting in the yard unwrapped.
Also, work happened. I haven’t worked overtime in years. My schedule has been Monday through Friday for going on twenty years. Then we got crazy busy leading up to the holidays and I have been asked to work every Saturday for the last few weeks. It looks like that will continue the remainder of December and possibly into the new year. Don’t get me wrong. I don’t mind the extra time at the shop, and especially don’t mind the extra money. But that means I have little time to work on a project that as yet has made me zero revenue.
So, as it stands right now, this little project will continue as soon as I can invest the time into editing the remainder of the book to get it ready for release. Until then, I offer my sincerest apologies and ask for your patience. I will return and finish the book as soon as I am able.
More traffic to the site will motivate me to get to it faster, so tell all your friends to come read a free zombie book and post to the forum. I love feedback. Let me know what you think.
All six episodes of Part One are posted. I already had all of Part One written before I started posting it. Part Two, however, is not nearly as complete. I am still working on it, and my progress has been a little slower than anticipated. So, it will be some time before I am able to offer access to Part Two.
In the meantime, feel free to kick off some discussion and speculation in the forums. Somebody has to get it started. It may as well be you.
I finally got so fed up with all the online advertising I run into all over the Internet, I installed ad blockers on all of my browsers and my cell phone. I had not realized how much of the Internet had turned into advertising until I didn’t have to look at it anymore. Pages load so much faster, and I don’t have to puzzle over where the ads end and the real content begins. It’s like rolling back the clock on the Intenet several years. It also caused me to come to a realization. I hate advertisements. This is a shocking realization, I know.
I am a firm believer in, “Do unto others.” In that light, I vow to never use invasive advertising of any kind. I will never employ pop-ups or any other method that would detract from the user’s experience. I particularly despise those ads that scroll up across my cell phone screen, completely blocking the content until I scroll it up, past the content. I will never use those, or anything like them.
So, you need not use ad blockers here. That being said, I do recommend using ad blockers in all of your browsers. The rest of the Internet is in process of transforming entirely to advertisements. There may come a day when these ad blockers will block the entire Internet because there will be no more non-advertisement content left. I fear that day.
I finally converted the PDF files to both ePub and .mobi formats for your eReaders. As it turns out, it was a simple process. In fact, I found several online tools that require no software from me at all. It uploads the document to the server where it converts it to the mobile format, and then the download of the converted file is automatically started. It only took me a few minutes to convert all of the files I had ready. That is good, because now I can get back to getting more of the book ready to read.
Unfortunately, WordPress would not allow me to upload the files without putting them in an archive. I chose the RAR format because that is the software I have installed on my computer. It is a widely supported archive format. WinRAR is what I used (which is a free download), but many other archive software titles will also support it. It is not natively supported in Windows 10, but there are apps in the Windows store for unpacking RAR files.
If you have any difficulty opening the files, post a request for support in the forum and I will do all I can to assist you. Thank you for your interest in my writing, and I hope you enjoy the book.
Download the book here.
I have committed to a schedule of posting a new section of the book every week, on Sunday. I am not promising when on Sunday, just that it WILL be on Sunday. That is my self imposed deadline to make sure I get this damn book done. I’ve been working on it for far too long, and this is my motivation to make it happen. I am very excited to finally put it out there for people to see. By all means, provide feedback in the comments, in the forum, or wherever.
Obviously I need help spreading the word. If you like the book, please share it with your friends, be they real or online. I will greatly appreciate it.
And now, you can download the first two installments here. I hope you enjoy:
- Oak Ridge Apocalypse 1 – Dusk of Man – Episode 01
- Oak Ridge Apocalypse 1 – Dusk of Man – Episode 02
Dusk of Man Cover
I am getting closer every day to publishing the book. Today I got the cover designed. I also got the first of six sections of Part 1 finalized. Now I just have to figure out how to convert it to the various eBook formats. It’s late, so that will have to wait for another day. I still have a day job, so sleep is kind of required.
Also, I discovered that Amazon will not allow me to publish in a serialized format. I have to complete the book before I can submit it to the Amazon Kindle store. So, I guess I’ll just have to buckle down and make that happen. I haven’t even looked at the Apple book store yet. I got hung up in all the other work.
I looked into getting an ISBN number for the book. As it turns out, that costs a lot more than I expected. There is only one business in the U.S. where you can get one, so you just have to pay their price. It’s $125.00 for a single ISBN. That will have to wait a little while.
Until I get the entire book finished, and can afford an ISBN, I will go forward with my plan to release in a serialized fashion. I will just do it here, and Amazon and Apple will have to wait for a finished copy. So, head on over to the Dusk of Man page to download the PDF today. I will add other formats as I learn how to convert my document to them.