This is Halloween

It’s drawing near to Halloween, and even in the fictional world of computer games are ghosts and goblins popping up.  Unless of course you play horror games, then that’s pretty standard fair all year round.  I decided to write a poem based on the events in Guild Wars 2 that have been brought back this Halloween season.


Tis that time, oh Halloween
The time of year for the Pumpkin King
So grab your pistols if you dare
And brave the world that would scare

Brave the evils that would fright
The creatures giving an awful sight
Show courage on this scare filled night
Avoid the minions that would bite

In this time of Halloween
When cats would cry and ghosts would scream
When the mist is thick, just like steam
Don’t you worry, don’t make a scene

The Mad King rises once again
With toys and games for all to claim
He’ll take you through a scarey game
Make sure you do just the same

But watch out for Edric, son of the Mad King
His voice is shrill, as he will sing
To bring about fear is his thing
And revenge is the ultimate scares in his ring

Tis that time of Halloween
When ghosts and ghouls share the scene
So grab your pistols if you dare
And brave the world that would scare

poem written by Tim Holtorf on the gaming world of Tyria in Guild Wars 2, based on the events from the Halloween event, screen shots from Guild Wars 2 using the character of Shani Wennemein in game.  Guild Wars 2 and all characters are copyright ArenaNet.

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Posted by on October 22, 2014 in Fun, randomness


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Morning music

I had three songs going through my head this morning.  So here’s the morning play list.

An odd mix, I know, but these are the things I wake up to.

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Posted by on October 21, 2014 in Fun, randomness


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A new job

Here I am, in my new place, ready to head out for my first day of work at my new job, in this new town.  I don’t know much about Unity, though I did a lot of walking on Friday, Saturday and Sunday just to get my bearings straight.

It’s been warm lately, so that’s good.  I’ve been feeling a bit better here, but I’ll know more when I get through the first week of work.  My new accommodations are pretty spiffy, I must say.  Much bigger than the apartment I lived in when I was in Humboldt (conversely, much bigger than the one in Outlook).

So we’ll see how this first day goes.

Here’s the music that was going through my head this morning.

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Posted by on October 20, 2014 in Life, randomness


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Diversity in media


Let’s talk about diverse characters in fiction.

The above is a depiction from Stephen King’s The Dark Tower series.  The series is about Roland the gunslinger in his quest to reach the Dark Tower.  When we first meet him, it opens with the words “the man in black fled across the desert, and the gunslinger followed”.  Once Roland reaches the man in black, he learns he must draw forth three people to aid him.

One of those people (in truth, two of those people) is Odetta Holmes.  Odetta is described as the heiress to a fortune her father had built by developing a better way to help dentistry.  She is a civil rights activist in the late 50s early 60s.  And she is disabled, having her legs cut off below the knee when she was pushed in front of a train.  She also suffers from a form of multiple personality disorder.  Odetta is one personality, who is a forthright, logical thinking, polite individual.  The other personality is Detta Walker, a spiteful, harsh, fear filled woman who spits venom when she speaks.  Detta has a hatred of men (mostly white men as described in the book), and often threatens to kill Roland and Eddie (another of the people Roland drew from the doors to help him on his quest).

At the third door, which the reader believes is to be the third person to help, we discover that the person is in fact the man who pushed Odetta Holmes.  At some point Roland gets Detta to look into the door and she sees herself.  Or rather, she sees Odetta.  This causes the two personalities to recognize each other and forces them into a new personality, which becomes Susannah Dean.

Even in a wheelchair, Susannah is recognized by Roland as being a gunslinger.  He does not discount her ability or her tenacity just because she is bound to such a device.  And she proves in the second and third book that she is indeed a gunslinger as Roland teaches her what was taught to him.  He also teaches Eddie, but Roland believes Susannah is the better of the two.

Susannah is also very adept at movement even though she is confined to a wheelchair.  At one point in the third book, she crawls along the ground using her arms to catch up with Roland and Eddie, making hardly a sound as she goes.

Susannah Dean is one character that represents diversity and how it can be done in popular media.

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Posted by on October 18, 2014 in Fun, randomness


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Book Review: The Dark Tower – The Drawing of the Three

995123Stephen King’s epic series continues in this the second book of the Dark Tower: The Drawing of the Three.

In this, Roland has to open three doors and choose three people to help him in his quest.  The first is Eddie Dean, a heroine addict who Roland first meets on an airplane bound from Florida to New York.  Eddie’s in the process of smuggling heroine back from suppliers to an Italian mob boss.  The second is Odetta Susannah Holmes, a wheelchair bound, black woman who is the heiress to a fortune.  But Odetta has another inside her; Detta Walker, a very cruel and spiteful woman.

What originally Roland believes to be the third person is in fact a way to make Odetta’s two halves see each other to become the third person.

Eddie comes from the late 1980s, while Susannah (as she becomes known) is from the late 50s/early 60s.  Neither of them are prepared for the strange world of the gunslinger’s.

As we progress through the story, we get to see each of their lives; Eddie and Odetta’s through Roland’s eyes and through their own conversations.  And little by little, a bit more of Roland’s as he is willing to offer it up.

This second book added another chapter to the series which makes for an excellent read.  Make no mistake, King’s style of writing is recognizable, but he manages to form and interesting world with the narrative.  With each person that joins Roland, it becomes more rich and interesting.  It also brings about questions that eventually get answered in the third book (only to be replaced with more questions).  But one thing is certain, the three join forces on the quest to the Dark Tower.

King’s choice of characters, time periods and even places is interesting.  Usually we’re used to his books taking place in Maine (at least in the horror genre and what was dubbed the Castle Rock stories).  Here, he chooses a black woman who had her legs below the knee cut off from a train accident (which we learn, wasn’t an accident at all).  And a white man, from the projects who has become a pawn in the trafficking of drugs.  Both come from New York City, and while they both come from different eras, Eddie still comes from a poor family and a poor neighbourhood (victimized by the mob that runs the place), Odetta is from an affluent family (although, she is still a black woman during the time before the Civil Rights Act passed and became law).  Roland gets to see all of this clearly, and even though the two come from different eras, he learns as much from one as from the other, and finds similarities.

Through Roland’s eyes, the things from our world seem magical, as he asks about things like Asprin (Astin) and flying coaches, believing alchemists must be sought after in this world.  But we can’t forget; Roland is a gunslinger, so even then he still has a different code.

The second book continues the journey and adds new and interesting characters to the quest.  But questions still remain.  Will the three survive together?  Will Roland find Jake?  What about the man in black?  And just how far are they from the Dark Tower?

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Posted by on October 6, 2014 in Fun, randomness


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Shameless self promotion AND fancast

Several months ago I made an entry giving a fancast of the book I’d written and the series I’m rebooting which gave faces to the names of the four elven characters.  I’ve recently been told that my choices may be a bit too old (which is rubbish, each of those choices is around the same age or slightly younger than I am, so I kinda take offense to that).

However, because of such things I decided that it might be fun to update the list with younger actresses to play the roles of the four gunslinging elves.  In order of appearance:

Shani Wennemein


My choice for the role of the bullish and often times stubborn gunslinger and shadow walker, is Cara Gee.  Cara Gee was born in Calgary and is no stranger to stage and screen.  She was nominated for a Canadian Screen Award for her role in the film Empire of Dirt and this fall stars as Kat Loving in the CBC drama Strange Empire.  A western set on the Alberta/Montana border, Loving attempts to seek revenge against her husband’s killer.  Cara would fit in well as the elven gunslinger, Shani Wennemein, who has a pragmatic and straightforward ideal of right and wrong.

Pania Alow


My choice for the swashbuckler and herald, Pania Alow, is Natalie Dormer.  A well known actress for such roles as Anne Boleyn in the series The Tudors, Irene Adler/Jamie Moriarty in Elementary, and Margaery Tyrell in the series Game of Thrones.  She also plays the role of Cressida in the Hunger Games movie series.  Having played several roles which involves an outward confidence and even sarcastic attitude, Natalie would pick up the role of Pania quite well.

Wren Wennemein


For the role of Wren, my choice is Tonantzin Carmelo.  A graduate of UC Irvine, her acclaimed stage roles include Anita in Exmagare, Christina Khalo/Paula in Frida Khalo, and multiple characters in Malinche. She is in national commercials and starred in the feature film King Rikki with Jon Seda and Mario López.  She is an Emerging Voice with the California Indian Storytellers Association and a mentor for the Native Voices Youth Playwright Project. She has recently provided her likeness and voice for the character Kendra Daniels in EA’s survival horror video game Dead Space.  Her likeness would also fit what I envision for Shani’s calm and placid sister, the Consoler and Healer, Wren.

Abisayo Temililou


For the role of the paladin vowing to free her human cousins from slavery, my choice is Nicole Beharie.  Nicole is known for her roles in American Violet, The Express, Sins of the Mother, My Last Day Without You, Apartment 4E, and the Steve McQueen film Shame, where she starred opposite Michael Fassbender.  In 2013 she starred as Rachel Robinson, the wife of Jackie Robinson, in the historical baseball film 42.  That same year she began her role as Abbie Mills, a police officer from the small town of Sleep Hollow.  Nicole would be do well in the role of Abisayo, the oldest daughter of the chieftan of a Yoruba nation and a paladin and protector of her people, who would eventually become the lover of Pania Alow.

Those are some of my choices to play roles in the series I’m writing based on the book I’ve published, The Adventures of Black Mask & Pale Rider, which is still available in print.


Tim Holtorf Author Spotlight the front page store for my books on (both in paperback and in kindle versions)

The Adventures of Black Mask & Pale Rider (both in paperback and in kindle versions)

The Adventures of Black Mask & Pale Rider

Barnes & Noble (for the Nook)

The Adventures of Black Mask & Pale Rider

iTunes iBook store

The Adventures of Black Mask & Pale Rider

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Posted by on October 1, 2014 in Black Mask and Pale Rider, Fun, Writing


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Posted by on September 28, 2014 in Life, randomness


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