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#287: Personal Religulosity, Part One

October 6, 2008

Notes from the Manager

Related Strips: #226: Agree to Disagree?, Part One; #227: Agree to Disagree?, Part Two; #228: Agree to Disagree?, Part Three; #229: Flies, Vinegar, and Honey; #230: Life, the Universe, and Everything; #232: Blind Faith

The sequel no one demanded! This is a three-parter, so come back Wednesday and Friday — or come back next Monday if you hated the Expelled strips, because this is, in some ways, more of that.

Bill Maher's Religulous (now out in limited release) is actually very funny for the first hour or so, until it turns its attention to Islam, where Maher loses almost all of humor and levity that was so pervasive in the first hour (even to a fault, occasionally). Then he caps it off with a heavy-handed anti-religious diatribe that feels both unnecessary and poorly fit with the rest of the movie.

The funny parts and the legitimately thought-provoking parts still make it very much worth seeing, I think, but it is disappointing that he doesn't really give religion a fair chance to refute his main point: that religion is inherently ridiculous and harmful to society. He interviews no theologians and no Biblical scholars. Perhaps the layman's religious beliefs are really more relevant than those of a scholar, but it's a perspective he doesn't even consider. It's worth noting that he did contact a few real authorities at a few churches (i.e., the Pope and the head of the Mormons), but was refused interviews with them.

Of the people in the film, only a handful — of any religion — come off as particularly sane, and even one of them (a senior Vatican priest) is a bit nutty. The all-too-brief highlight of the film, for me, was the chat with the Vatican astronomer, who comments about the (so-called) "literal" interpretations of the Old Testament and decries the fundamentalist insistence on using the Bible as a scientific text. I would be eager to see a film really examine just that point alone for two hours.

Complaints from some people that Maher and director Larry Charles (Borat) edited his interviewees come off as crazier than they really are is a cop-out, however: he doesn't really bait anybody into saying or doing anything. He asks questions, and they answer. He does make fun of more than a few of them to their face, but the words coming out of some of their mouths is impossible to explain away by baiting. (Even if he did bait them, they still said it.) The nutty religious people on-screen really do believe what they're saying, and these people really do exist. In mass numbers.

Anyway.


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Tell me a story. (Looking for a prose writer for an eBook single.)

Sunday, March 29, 2015

I want to take a foray into electronic publishing.

I am looking for a (prose) writer to provide a short story, novella or non-fiction story that I will turn into an iBooks-formatted eBook for sale (in the iBookstore), released under my Chase Sequence publishing imprint. Chase Sequence published Multiplex: There and Back Again, which won the 2014 IPBA Gold Medal for Best Graphic Novel/Drawn Book–Humor/Cartoon, so technically it is an award-winning publisher.

There is no limitation with regard to genre, but I will say that my taste in prose leans strongly toward literary fiction and non-fiction, and toward characters, psychology, and well-written prose over plot. (Margaret Atwood is my favorite writer.)

What to Submit: A pitch for a 30+ page, prose short story/novella/non-fiction piece. No comics — no picture books. If you have already written the short story, great, but it must be previously unpublished. Please include links or URLs to a resumé and examples of previous published work would be helpful, to give me a feel for your voice.

Send questions (or submissions) to gordon at multiplexcomic.com.

The Terms: No money up front, but 50% of the cover price in exchange for one year of exclusivity (from the date of publication). The writer retains all other rights to their story. These will be sold via iBooks only (at least at first), which means that Apple will get 30% and I will get 20% for my contributions: I will edit the story; I will design and produce the eBook; I will illustrate a cover for it (or hire someone else to, if I’m not the best fit for the story); I will help promote it.

Please submit your pitch before April 30, 2015. I will notify the selected writer(s) I am interested in working with as soon as possible after that.

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