Tales of the Weird

Nuclear Power Plants

Posted by on Oct 28, 2016 in Tales of the Weird | 0 comments

Recently, the thriller, The Defect was published by Deer Hawk, and I now know more than I probably wanted to know about nuclear power plants. Previously, my knowledge of them was that there were some still in existence, and that, while the incidence of issues with a nuclear power plant are very low, they can cause great havoc when something goes wrong (Japan, Three Mile Island, Chernobyl) but in my daily life, I never actually thought about them…until I edited the book. Here are a few things I’ve learned: I learned about the inner workings of a nuclear power plant, and how one is decommissioned. There are 60 nuclear power plants in the U.S. Many are near large cities (for good reason, they need more power than suburban areas). There have been fifty-seven nuclear incidents since Chernobyl and most of them have been in the U.S. Chernobyl was the only nuclear accident in history to cause deaths. People think that with homeland security, a terrorist attack couldn’t happen on U.S. soil, but something happened in 2013 at one of the power plants in Tennessee where two shots were fired and the assailant got away. The area around Chernobyl is still unlivable. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to go hide in a corner and rock back and forth. *****Correction: there have been two nuclear accidents that have cost people’s lives. One was in the United States, but the incident didn’t kill anyone with radiation, steam was the killer...

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Tales of the Weird

Posted by on Jan 12, 2016 in Tales of the Weird | 0 comments

Some days, I feel as though I’m reiterating what I’ve already written when I write about writing (say that ten times fast), so I’m going in a new direction. Recently, I’ve been looking at the books that have been published by Deer Hawk, and have realized just how much I’ve learned because of them. For instance, before Petweenus was published (and long before that program on Discovery America), I didn’t know that moonshiners still existed or that the government still prosecuted people who make moonshine. I didn’t know that there are theories about Central American indigenous tribes, fleeing persecution and death, possibly came north and integrated themselves into some of the Native American tribes around here, specifically the Alabamos Indians. Heck, I didn’t know about the Alabamos Indians. All this and more came from one book. We’ve got dozens. So, I’m now going to add a page to my blog dedicated to all the weird and sometimes wonderful things I’ve learned while editing books. To start, we’re going to talk about cannibalism. Cannibalism is defined as the “nonconsensual consumption of another human’s body matter.” (Cornell University) Interestingly enough, it isn’t illegal to consume the human body in the United States, but there are some legal issues with desecrating a corpse, or basically how one would procure human meat (also known as long pig or hairless goat), as killing someone is definitely illegal. Reports of cannibalism exist even today. Anybody can go online and look that up. Heck, there are even websites that have information on how to butcher a human for the most use of the meat. Somewhat more disturbing is the fact that some people will willingly give themselves up as sacrifices for other people’s curiosity, as was the case of Bernd Brandes, who answered an online solicitation from German self-proclaimed cannibal Armin Miewes. Reportedly, they had sex, then Miewes castrated Brandes, and they both ate his penis. Afterward, Miewes killed Brandes and, before he was arrested, ate about fifty pounds of him. Reportedly, he tasted like pork. So, are we actually the other white meat? I’m not sure I want to know. However, I definitely learned more than I wanted to when I started researching the facts in the book. What’s the weirdest thing you’ve learned from a...

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