About Me

Mikael Aizen is a full time author.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

The Argument of Constants

I'm on a roll!  New novelette out called "The Argument of Constants."  This was my absurd story that won the Honorably Mention in Writers of the Future in 2010.  It was kind of a blast to write--inspired and paying homage to Roger Zelazny of the Amber Chronicles, and also Douglas Adams of the Hickhiker series.  I was proud to get the certificate from the competition on my first try, seeing as how it is the largest SF/F competition there is for amateur writers.  Anyway, buy it here at:  http://amzn.com/B006WFG0JM

It's got crazy monkey koala things and multiple universes and epic battles to boot.  Pun not intended.

And here's the ridiculously awesome cover.  Enjoy!

Saturday, December 31, 2011

Guilt Corrupted

I've released a new novella called "Guilt Corrupted".  It's about half a novel's length.

Guilt Corrupted is a story of a guy stuck in the middle of warring gods.  The poor guy gets his faith pounded in when he learns that everything he's been raised up believing might be wrong.  So yeah, explosions, magic lightning, torture and killing gods, all the good fantasy stuff.

I'm testing out the waters for Amazon Select, but from what I hear it's not been worth it.

Anyway.  Today there is a 1-day freebie giveaway.  Hope you catch it in time.


Oh, and brief update.  Murder Genes has gotten great visibility from the free promo earlier.  It worked pretty good as far as I can tell, my sales have thus far increased about 10-15x.  As expected, most the reviews are very polar.  Either you love it or you hate it.   Unfortunately, the majority of negative reviews are from people who didn't finish it or get past the first whatever pages due to gore.  That's frustrating because the depth of the novel comes in later--explaining why the gore was necessary, and to be honest.  What did they expect?  I named it murder genes, I warned about the gore in the description, I put author notes up warning about the content, and ever single review talks about the content!  If they want to give me a negative review for the violence because they don't like blood and guts...why'd they pick it up in the first place?

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Murder Genes Free Promotion Experiment

Sorry for the long break, everyone.

Murder Genes is undergoing a free promotion.  As an "indie" author (because of the nature of taking on a pseudonym), it is particularly difficult to get momentum and traffic to your book.  I did an experiment with a novellette called "The Sway of Disaster" here: http://amzn.com/B005FFTNGCin which I released Sway for a short period of time as free, and reverted it back to the 99 cent price point.

It worked extremely well.  Sway has maintained top 100 short stories on kindle ever since it returned to paid status, and sales are not only maintaining, but growing.  I was thrilled.

I decided to throw MG up for the same goal: to get people to read it and talk about it and link to it in hopes of jump starting sales.

So, grab it now.    http://amzn.com/B004W3GZQ4  If you like it, please repost it, link it, and talk about it in whatever online venue you can as a thank you.

Fingers crossed!

Mikael Aizen

Friday, July 1, 2011

Book Bliss: Review: Murder Genes by Mikael Aizen

Another Review. At the very least I get people feeling sick to their stomach. Almost every review given on Murder Genes talks about "having the stomach" to read it.

Book Bliss: Review: Murder Genes by Mikael Aizen: "Title: Murder Genes Author: Mikael Aizen Size: 417kb Release Date: Out Now Publisher: Self-published Source: Author Mon, Jan ..."

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Violence and Sex in books

I am often confronted with the question by my wife, "Don't you feel bad about...you know, the violence in your book? What if someone GETS OFF to it?  Or, what if someone made a movie from your book.  Would you watch it?  Would you be OK with them showing that kinda stuff to potentially your parents, or kids, or anyone in general, straight from your sick mind?"

My answer?  I don't know.

In American Media, violence is much more acceptable than sex and nudity.  Why?  I mean, wouldn't we want a bunch of sex-o-maniacs running around rather than terrorists and murderers?

Not to say that media makes the choices for an individual--though that is an interesting topic for another blog post.

We censor language more than we do violence.  Cartoons often have bloody violence and even if they are less graphic, is graphic really all that matters?  What about concept?  After all, writing is primarily conceptual.  "Graphic Writing" is merely how much conceptual imagery we give a reader from his/her own head.  We didn't feed the reader anything they didn't already have available to visualize, because the reader wouldn't have understood if they didn't already have the tools to imagine it.

Or is that my cop out as an author?

If someone goes and...not to give real spoilers...face rapes toothless people because of my novel.  Is that my fault?  Shouldn't I feel guilty?

When writing anything, conflict is necessary.  To show the light, you have to show the dark.  As any graphic artist will tell you, contrast is far more powerful than a bunch of bright colors everywhere overwhelming the senses.  So, the darker I go the lighter I can show, right?

Though with that logic, why not show all the gore and sex possible to children, just so that they can see how good their life is.

I hope nothing bad comes from writing Murder Genes.  Because the truth is that I will feel guilty if something bad does happen.  But if something good comes from it as I hope it will--should I feel proud? Is the result the final measurement of a good, ethical and moral use of sex and violence in a book?

Maybe I should have figured it out before releasing Murder Genes.  Maybe I'm just irresponsible.

I don't know, you tell me.

Monday, June 13, 2011

"Murder Genes" Receives A Particularly Kick-Butt Review

I love reviews, negative and positive.  Negative reviews give you something to work on, positive reviews are reward for hard work paid off.  Of course, positive reviews are what every author ultimately hopes for, but on the journey of learning to write--positive anything is few and far between.  But it does happen, and for me the positive is happening more and more frequently.  In this piece and my other published works.

This review gave me enough seritonin receptor stimulation that I had to repost it.

Course, the author in me wanted to point out how to properly spell "following" and where vs were, but that's me being author.  I wish I had advice to other writers about how to get positive reviews, especially reviews that make ME want to read my own book, but I think as with all things that the answer is simple.  Write a good book.  Do a good job.  There is no shortcut.


 Check it out:

Chris's review
May 26, 11

5 of 5 stars
bookshelves: death-gamesdystopian
Read from May 25 to 26, 2011

Every couple of years I read something that seems perfectly suited to my tastes, and this delivered.

The first thing I would like to say is that this was absolutely savage. 

In the future they have determined that genetics lead to a predisposition of character, and choose to ship everybody that caries the so called 'murder gene' into a large walled city. Inside the citizens have chosen to live under the rules of a game. Enter the main chara, who is there to shake their world to the very core, of course. 

The book splits into two stories really early on, one fallowing the father on the inside,the other fallowing his son, who's story line in very different. Both of which I would have been more than happy to read as separate novels. In many ways they did seem like two different novels in the same universe. 

Much of the overlying themes dealt with why people would kill, so much to the point where the main chara, Jay, seemed haunted by his choices early on. He was excepting of his actions, but careful of justifying them. In a dark and twisted world of dog eat dog, one must kill. Quickly adapting to the circumstances, he quickly becomes a key player in their game, in many ways changing the rules. 

The opening to this was so very violent! The main chara is no stranger to pain in this. 

The cast of characters where well rounded and complete on both sides of the story. But, I do have to say that half way through the fathers story line took a HUGE sideways slant. In such a strange way, I'm not sure if it made the story better, or if I can ever understand why the author did it (I really want to read an interview about this book). It was entertaining though, so far out there, controversial, unexpected, just fucking bizarre. If you can, try and read this before some jerk off spoils it! 

If you haven't noticed yet, I haven't said anything about the son's story yet. I don't really want to talk about it, I would have read the book just for that story alone. It was very good, and provided some decent weight to the book. 

This book is going to go down as very controversial for the content. Both for the content, and the surprise change in the middle. If you like hyper-violent fiction, read this!

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Study #4

One possible answer began to emerge after a Dutch woman consulted her doctor about whether to have kids. Her family had a history of violence, including rape and attempted murder. Would her children be violent too, she asked? Her doctor consulted geneticist Hans Brunner, who discovered that the family carried a defective gene: it made too much of an enzyme, called monoamine oxidase A, resulting in excessive destruction of neurotransmitters that help keep us calm and happy.

The finding thrilled some scientists--here, finally, was an explanation for criminality--and appalled others, who feared that if genes dictate behavior, it could lead to genetic typecasting of entire races...The implication, says Terrie Moffitt, a professor of psychology at Wisconsin: "Genes influence people's susceptibility or resistance to environmental 'pathogens.'" Someone with a low genetic propensity will have to be pushed very hard to become violent; another individual with a different genetic makeup might have a hair trigger.

-Lemonick, Michael D. "Children and Violence: The Search for a Murder Gene."  Time, Jan 20, 2003, http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,1004083-1,00.html

I want to discuss the possibility of free choice vs fate.  In our society, we are becoming more and more "excuse" based.

It is natural when you find yourself in a guilty situation to make excuses.  It is natural for us to deflect blame onto someone else, or something else.  We blame our religion, our government, our parents.  Anything but ourselves.

Studies for centuries have shown tendencies.  We've mastered the art of conditioning and brainwashing.  We've manipulated our young into positive OR negative people.

Yet I believe that there is still, in all these circumstances, no excuse for damaging and destructive behavior.  Who cares if you have tendencies towards violence.  Does that suddenly make you not responsible for your actions?  Do the laws of human altruism become obsolete?

Mankind has progressed on the foundations of overcoming animalistic tendencies.  We can think beyond fight and flight, reproduction, the need to feed.  Because we can think beyond our base instincts we can create an environment of long term sustainability.

The line must be drawn somewhere.  And I choose this line.  I choose ultimate responsibility for our actions regardless of circumstance.  Sure, the nazi soldiers of germany were practically forced into their condition by Hitler's regime, but what they did was still wrong.

Care to debate?