Posts Tagged ‘birthday’

Yesterday was my birthday, as you probably already knew. Lot of good things happened, but there’s one thing I’d like to focus on in this post. I’m on YouTube a lot (some argue it’s typical of my generation, and to some extent I agree), and yesterday Doctor Who’s official channel uploaded a short video featuring Sarah Dollard, who’s writing an episode for the upcoming season (you can watch the video here). Me being me, I comment on the video that someday I’d like to write for Doctor Who despite being an American. And that opened the commenter floodgates.

Now, YouTube has acquired a reputation where commenters can be the nastiest people around. I’ve seen this side of YouTube before. I once was called gay for commenting on a video of an old anime’s theme song that I used to love watching that show (wrong asshole, I’m bisexual. There’s a difference), one troll told me all the stuff in a video series I was watching was staged despite proof that it all actually happened (he was easy to fend off though once it was pointed out that he had only his belief to back him up), and infamously one guy joked I’d been raped by meditation music when I commented on how a meditation video really relaxed me (you can read my post condemning that joke here). With these sort of experiences, you learn to be a little guarded in what you comment. You filter yourself so that people don’t gang up on you, strangers using their anonymity to just be awful to you or take your words out of context or a hundred other nasty things.

Which is why yesterday’s experience was so heartening and uplifting. Throughout the day, I had people replying to my comment, telling me that I had to just be a very good writer and get on the DW team’s radar in order to work for them, that nationality had nothing to do with it (later I found out that Sarah Dollard is Australian, so there’s the proof right there). I replied that I was a writer, that I had a few books out and that they were on sale in honor of my birthday (and that sale’s still going on through Sunday, by the way. You should seriously check out my work on Amazon and Smashwords for marked down or even free books).

And that’s when it starts getting really awesome. People are wishing me a happy birthday, they’re wanting to know what sort of books I write, one guy even asks for the titles of my books so they can purchase them himself! All told, there were twenty-something replies to my original comment, some of them by me but others by the complete and total strangers I’d learn to be wary of over the years.

You know, the way YouTube is, they’re not very good at policing their comments sections for abuse. Believe me, Google’s tried, but the systems they use often miss the really nasty stuff and sometimes persecute commenters for relatively harmless stuff. Some content creators on YouTube even moderate each and every comment or don’t allow comments whatsoever on their channels because of these problems. And for those viewers like myself, we have to learn to cope with this, either by not commenting in fear of the replies we’ll get or just to learn to grow a thicker skin and develop tools to deal with it ourselves.

So I comment, but I sometimes wonder if on YouTube there’s only so much civility, that comments are on a spectrum from respectful and somewhat nice to just downright awful. Yesterday surprised me and made me very happy. Within those twenty-something replies was a level of kindness and support and love that I didn’t know I could experience outside of Facebook or blogging. I got to learn that people online, especially on YouTube, can still be decent human beings even with the protection of anonymity around them, so easy to abuse sometimes.

And perhaps maybe my faith in humanity was bolstered a little.

So from now when I’m on YouTube, listening to music videos or watching funny content or whatever, I might not be so jaded. I’ll remember this little birthday surprise and I’ll know that not everyone on YouTube has the potential to be a jerk. Some have the potential to be really, really awesome people (and not just because they’re probably Whovians, though that can sometimes play a factor). And I wish the best for the people who were so kind to me yesterday, because what they did was just so overwhelmingly positive and unexpected that it deserves special mention in a time when so many people are using the Internet for awful reasons.

Bravo folks. Bravo. And thanks. You made my birthday that much more special, and I appreciate the encouragement. Here’s hoping I’m writing with the BBC someday!

22 years ago, a powerful being of a higher plane burst forth out of its hellish home with the purpose of spreading terror and chaos to the world. It found a human host and came forth from her, bringing insanity wherever it went and making things interesting at parties. This being, known by a thousand names in just as many worlds and cultures, became known in this one as Rami Ungar the Writer.

At least, that’s how I like to tell the story of my birth. It’s better than the one my mother tells, anyway.

But back on point. Today’s my 22nd birthday, and I’m celebrating it by giving a gift to you, my Followers of Fear. From today, June 10th, to Sunday June 14th, all my published works–The Quiet Game, Reborn City, and Snake–will be available at marked down prices or–in the case of the e-book versions–free of charge! And you’ll be able to get them all from Amazon or Smashwords (reminder that Smashwords only does e-books).

All my books, on sale through Sunday

All my books, on sale through Sunday

In case you’re not really familiar with my works, I’ve included descriptions of each book along with the links below. I hope you like what you read and decide to check out one of my books for your reading pleasure. And if you do decide to get one or more of my published works, I hope once you read them you’ll be kind enough to let me know what you think, either in a review or just a comment on a blog post. Positive or negative, I love feedback. It helps me improve the stories I write so that more people get entertaining and thrilling books.

Well, that’s all for now everyone. I’m off to do some writing and try out a new hobby and if I get a chance later today I’ll write another post. Until then, have fun at the sale, my Followers of Fear! And happy reading!

The Quiet Game: Five Tales To Chill Your Bones
Are you ready to face your own inner demons? Or perhaps you are ready to face the dybbuk’s wrath. Maybe you’ll even jump into the lady ogre’s den. And if you’re brave enough, you may end up in the deadliest game of all, a game where if you die, no one will hear you scream. In his debut published work, Rami Ungar takes you through five terrifying tales of darkness, suspense and fear. Get ready to play The Quiet Game.
Amazon link
Smashwords link

Reborn City
When Zahara Bakur moves to the gambling town of Reborn City, she finds her life flipped upside down when her parents are killed in a hate crime and she is forced to join the interracial street gang the Hydras. From the start this gang is different. Its leaders, including the silent and stern Rip, all have powers that defy imagination. And as Zahara becomes closer to the leaders, she becomes aware of a shadowy government organization that has a sinister interest in the Hydras. It will take all that Zahara has to make sure she and her new friends make it out alive of Reborn City, and the choice she makes will affect not only her, but maybe the world itself.
Amazon link
Smashwords link

Snake
How far would you go for love and revenge? When a young man loses the love of his life and afterwards witnesses a horrific murder, he descends into insanity and decides to hunt down the men who took his lover away from him. Styling himself as the Snake, he goes after New York’s most powerful mafia family, and he won’t stop till he finds his love and makes the monsters who took her pay. Even if that means becoming a monster worse than the ones he is hunting.
Amazon link
Smashwords link