Destiny, Twitch Re-brand and the 30k Club


Destiny 2:

Back when Destiny came out, my friends and I were extremely excited because it was being made by Bungie. When it released we put in tons of hours on it and played it for months. A lot of my friends continued to play it for months after I stopped playing and I would frequently return to team up with my friends to play again. Now we’re just a few days away from the console release of Destiny 2 and I’m excited to play it the same way I played the first Destiny and put in a ton of hours with my buddies.

The PC open BETA is happening right now, so if you want to check it out I highly recommend it. I never played the first one on PC, I played mainly on PS4, but since my PC has been upgraded since then I decided to give the open BETA a try. Now I could easily use a controller to play on PC, but I wanted to get the full experience and decided to use keyboard and mouse. The KB/Mouse combo is usually the preferred method for most gamers, especially when playing FPS games. I have to say, it had me questioning my PS4 controller, because the mouse and keyboard felt extremely smooth. The opening story mission was fluid after I changed a couple keybindings to make it more comfortable for me and PvP took me a while to get used to, but I eventually got it down(KingComplex is my tag).

Destiny was both a great PvE and PvP experience, so if you enjoy FPS games and never took the plunge to check out the first Destiny, you should at least consider checking out the new one. It’s going to be great!

Twitch Re-Branding:


My old Twitch account was SynthroLives. A nod to my book series, A Soldier’s Crest. I was originally planning to livestream my writing process, but then I never got to it. It’s a hard thing to do, because new viewers won’t know what part you’re up to in the story and you would constantly be trying to catch people up. It’s not very engaging, or at least not engaging in the right way. So, I had to decide not to do that. However, I didn’t want to abandon the livestreaming idea completely and until I figure out a way to incorporate my book series into this adventure, I will instead switch my focus to the most popular thing on Twitch. Streaming video games.

My biggest problem with Twitch has always been my own inconsistencies. I would stream for an hour here, or some random game there, or often pick games that way too many people are going to be playing and I wouldn’t get any viewers for it anyway. The only success I’ve had streaming came in the form of NHL 17. I was mainly doing giveaways and posting about it on Reddit which definitely helped, but it was drawing in the wrong crowd. People who would just tune in to get something out of it and people that were willing to try to scam me and my legitimate viewers out of prizes. It worked well for a few nights and brought in a lot of followers and views, but it wasn’t the crowd I wanted so I stopped and didn’t stream NHL again.

I’ve had time to reevaluate a lot of things. The most important being that most people who find success in livestreaming are actually pretty skilled gamers or at least skilled at certain games. The only video game I have ever felt I was actually good at is the NHL series of games. I don’t know what it is about them, but I don’t get nervous in clutch situations and I always feel like I know the right move to make and what to do in any given situation. So, I’m going to revisit the idea of streaming the NHL video games, but without the giveaway factor.

That’s where the re-brand comes in. I had this idea for a side story that may or may not have been cannon within the Soldier’s Crest Universe where my characters would be reincarnated in the far-off future as hockey players. Vallick Halstar, the main character of my first book, would still be the star but under a slightly different name. That name was Val Starlight. I don’t know why, but I think it’s a really interesting, catchy and cool name. So I’m using it for the basis of this re-branding on my Twitch account.

I’ll stream Destiny 2 when it drops, but I don’t expect much from that. When NHL 18 drops on September 15th, I’ll be going all in. If you want to follow so you can get notifications when I start doing that, just head over to Twitch.tv/Val_Starlight and give me a follow. I hope you join me for the streams!

The “30K” Club:


If you’ve made it this far, you’re probably wondering what the 30k Club is referring to in the title. I posted a youtube video with a trick to help beat the Lich King in Hearthstone’s new expansion The Frozen Throne about a week ago. The video shot up to almost 10k views in just a few hours. It was the first day of the week 3 boss battle against the Lich King and I guess I got lucky by posting the first helpful strat for the Mage class and the video blew up more than I ever imagined it would. As of this post, the video now has 27,852 views! So not only did we reach the 10k club, but we also reached the 20k and then some club. Combined with the views of my other videos, my Youtube channel now almost has 30k views. If you happen upon this blog post, please help me reach 30k by going over to ASC Gaming and checking out the videos. Thanks to everyone that watched, commented, liked, subscribed and shared. It has been a really cool experience and I look forward to uploading more videos! My next one should release tomorrow and I’m planning to release a bunch of Destiny 2-related videos next week.

Thanks for reading! 🙂

I’m on all of the things!:

I mentioned the original Shorter Short Stories(in previous posts), please check it out and give me some feedback! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yX_5K…

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show…

Twitch: Twitch.tv/val_starlight

Gaming Youtube Channel: ASC Gaming

Twitter: @SoldiersCrest
Instagram: @SoldiersCrest
Facebook Book Page: https://www.facebook.com/SoldiersCres…

For Soldier’s Crest T-Shirts and other merchandise: https://www.zazzle.com/soldierscrest*

Streaming, Dreaming and Book Reviewing!

Streaming:

Lately I’ve been really fascinated with Twitch streamers and different things you can do with your stream. It’s one of those things that I wish I was more consistent with and I’m going to try to be more consistent very soon. With the release of Destiny 2 on Sept. 6th and the release of NHL 18 shortly after on Sept. 15th, I’m planning to dedicate a lot of my time to streaming. At the very least I’m hoping to stream 3 times a week, but with how much time me and my friends will be putting into Destiny 2, I have a feeling it will be more often than that.

Streaming is a pretty fun and great concept that I’m happy is becoming more and more popular. I remember when I was younger, I would love just having family or friends sit next to me while I play games. Obviously if it was a multiplayer game we would play together, but a lot of my friends and I were into single player games like RPGs. It was always fun playing the latest Final Fantasy with your buddy beside you helping guide you or just appreciating the game for it was. Those were some of my favorite moments gaming when I was growing up.

Now, all you need is a streaming service like Twitch and you can play your games with a whole audience of people watching. I love tuning in to other streamers and watching them play. DizzyKitten and Smashley are two of my favorites because they’re always very upbeat and engaging with their viewers. Since I’m playing a lot of Playerunknown’s Battlegrounds lately, I’ve really enjoyed watching Summit1g and DrDisRespect. “The Doc” as his viewers call him, is easily one of the most entertaining people I’ve ever seen and it really adds to the atmosphere of his streams.

Dreaming:

Playing video games for a living, whether it’s as a pro player or a professional streamer would be an absolute dream come true for me. So I’m going to try to put in the work to make it happen. Success as a streamer is probably more likely for me, as I think pro gaming is something I would struggle with. Outside of NHL games, I really don’t consider myself a great gamer. Even in NHL games, I know there is a lot of room to improve and I am by no means the best. Streaming on the other hand, I’ve noticed that there are a lot of different types of streamers. Obviously having skill helps, but as long as you’re entertaining to watch you can still find success.

Which could potentially be a problem, as I’m not a very talkative or outgoing person, but I feel that given the chance and being surrounded by my friends with their support while I do it, I know I can succeed. So I’m going to give it my best effort and see what happens. Having the right games should help. I know my play can appeal to NHL fans and I know my interaction and adventures with my friends in Destiny 2 could make for some entertaining content.


Don’t Forget the Books:

That being said, the obvious true dream here is to become a best selling author and hopefully one day get the Game of Thrones treatment for A Soldier’s Crest. When I see these people living their dreams and finding success in the things they love, it definitely motivates me. I don’t see why I can’t find success in both avenues and be a successful writer as well as a successful streamer/gamer. I haven’t lost sight of the book dream, that’s still the main goal. But at this moment in my life I need to pursue my dreams – as many of them as possible. I think I can do it!


Reviewing:

Lastly, for this post, I wanted to talk about a Book Review I recently did on Amazon and Goodreads for Threatening Souls by Nicole Lambert. Ms. Lambert is a fellow author from The Polyethnic and her book is really, really great! I wish I was a faster reader or had more time as I’m planning to read through all of the Polyethnic titles. It took me quite a bit to finish Threatening Souls(in my defense, it is a 400+ page book lol) but I’m happy that I did. It’s story setting reminded me of Buffy: The Vampire Slayer and the overall story had the same feel as The Magicians. Those are two of my favorite series so I was definitely into it and loved every minute of it. I highly recommend checking it out if you haven’t!

I’m trying to read the Polyethnic releases in order, so I’m doing Unhinged by Chani Lynn Feener next, but if you pick up Threatening Souls and enjoy it – know that there is a sequel out already called Bleeding Misery! I’ll be reading that in the future and writing a review for that as well when I get there.

Closing:

That’s it for this post! I’ve mainly been setting up the stream, gaming(but not working toward any of those goals I previously mentioned…) and writing. Shorter Short Stories are still coming along as I piece together the parts of the next three I want to release. I’m back to playing Hearthstone(which I’ll post more about in my next update!) and just trying to find my way on this crazy planet. Until next time!

I’m on all of the things!:

I mentioned the original Shorter Short Stories, please check it out and give me some feedback! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yX_5K…

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show…

Twitch: Twitch.tv/SynthroLives

Gaming Youtube Channel: ASC Gaming

Twitter: @SoldiersCrest
Instagram: @SoldiersCrest
Facebook Book Page: https://www.facebook.com/SoldiersCres…

For Soldier’s Crest T-Shirts and other merchandise: https://www.zazzle.com/soldierscrest*

Shorter Short Stories Update + New Youtube Video!

Hey everyone! Just a quick blog here, I might do another one on Friday. I had a busy day. Had a job interview, walked around the city a bunch, visited Midtown Comics and spent a lot of time with my family so I wasn’t able to post the blog earlier like I normally want to do. However, I didn’t want to miss a day, so here we are!

The new Shorter Short Stories are shaping up and starting to look great. The first one has everything but the voice work completed so far, so that means the text and picture are ready to go. As soon as the voice work is done(by the lovely Shannon Butler! Check out her book Beyond the Inferno!!) I’ll begin putting that together!

The second one now has a voice! My good friend Matt is going to be doing it for me, but other than Matt I’m slacking a bit on the second one. For those who have read A Soldier’s Crest: The Dragon Knight Chronicles, this shorter short story will be about Faris Featherwind! Those who have read the prequel really enjoy Faris and I can’t wait to share more of his story with everyone! Unfortunately, I have no artwork to accompany this one yet, but I believe Gabby is cooking up some more masterpieces for me so I’m sure we’ll have this fixed soon!

The third one has art, but I’m still working out the kinks on the story and still waiting to hear back from the person I reached out to for the voice work. It won’t take me long to write this one once I hammer out the details, because if I carry out the plan I’m planning it’s one of the characters from my series that I find it easy to write for. I know this is super vague, but I’ll be adding more to this soon once I get the ball rolling.

For those looking for more updates with my beautiful face, I did a Youtube Thing! Please check it out and let me know what you think!

I’ll have more updates either later this week or sometime next week. I’d like to fit in another blog somewhere throughout the week. I was thinking on Fridays, because I would like to eventually share some more writing here on the blog and Friday would be my slot for that anyway. We’ll see how it goes! Thanks for reading!

I’m on all of the things!:

I mentioned the original Shorter Short Stories, please check it out and give me some feedback! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yX_5K…

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show…

Twitch: Twitch.tv/SynthroLives

Twitter: @SoldiersCrest
Instagram: @SoldiersCrest
Facebook Book Page: https://www.facebook.com/SoldiersCres…

For Soldier’s Crest T-Shirts and other merchandise: https://www.zazzle.com/soldierscrest*

Goals

Goals

Hey everyone! It has been ages since I’ve used this blog due to complications with the log in information and trying to get everything settled. I used my other blog for a while, but now it’s time to return to this one and get my entries featured on my own website.

The theme of this blog post is goals. I will be referring to this post often in the future as I work closer to achieving these goals. Let’s break it down.

Writing Goals:

I’m happy to say that a lot of these goals have been completed. However, there are a TON more that I still need to work towards. I self-published my first book(shown above – top photo) A Soldier’s Crest back in 2015. Since then a lot has changed. I was picked up by the publishing company, The Polyethnic, at the beginning of this year and released my first traditionally published book just a few weeks ago. That book acts as a prequel to my first book and is called A Soldier’s Crest: The Dragon Knight Chronicles(shown above – bottom photo).

I’m extremely proud of both accomplishments and happy to say the first book is being re-released later this year in November! The prequel is designed to introduce people to the universe of my books and set the tone to build hype for the re-release. I’ve also completed another manuscript for another side project based in the ASC universe, that I am just waiting for my publisher to give me the okay before I submit it. This story will tell the origins of a very popular character from the first book, Mira Stormwillow. I’m really happy with how that story came out and I’m hoping to share it with everyone either later this year or early next year depending on publishing schedules.

So if you followed my other blog, you know I’m working on something called the “10 in 10 Campaign” which is essentially trying to complete 10 books in 10 years. I’m currently 30 years old and that would put me with 11 main story books(I’m not including the side story stuff like the prequel, so it could potentially be more than 10 in 10 years!) by the time I am 40. So far, everything is set in place to make this a reality. I’m still putting some guidelines on this process to ensure that I am comfortable with releasing these books and that I feel they are at the quality that I feel is the highest before releasing them to the public. Another words: I won’t release a bunch of trash in order to achieve my 10 in 10 goal.

That being said I am 170 pages into Book 2 as of this post and I intend to have it completed, my own personal edits included, before the first book gets re-released. This blog will touch on my writing goals and progress a lot, so I’ll leave it at that. There is so much more to talk about, but I will post more about it in the coming days.

Social Media / Youtube / Twitch Goals:

As an author trying to make it, as it is with any creator or artist, Social Media has become a huge part of advertising. I’m on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook of course, with my own Author Youtube page. While posting to the first three is easy and something you can do often with no problems – I’m trying to get the youtube page going. I haven’t been consistent with videos and updates, but one of my goals is to change that. A big part of it is to release a lot more “Shorter Short Stories” – which are mini(5 or 6 paragraphs) stories narrated by myself or my friends/peers. I’ve only released one and although it didn’t get as many views as I would’ve liked, I got a lot of positive feedback. If you want to help me feel better about the views, you can check it out here: Prelude to Ruria

I’m also trying to get more involved on Twitch. I’m a big gamer, so I’ll be livestreaming a lot of games with a set schedule starting soon. I’d also love to revisit another idea I had and occasionally do a livestream of my writing process as I work on whatever project I’m on at the time. I’m still working out the kinks, but I think this would be a really cool way to keep fans and friends updated on my progress.

Gaming Goals:

Well, I just mentioned I’m a big gamer so I figured I’d include some gaming goals here as well. I know this sounds kinda silly and this list will seem way longer than it should for a 30 year old person to be posting about, but I hope a lot of people who view this blog are also into gaming. I’d love to share a lot of my videos, goals, accomplishments and experiences on here as well. I have a separate Youtube channel for gaming(ASC Gaming) that I also plan to post more on. A recent video with some tips on a shortcut in the FFXIV expansion has reached almost 1900 views on there and I’d like to replicate that more in the future if I can!

Here’s the breakdown of my current gaming goals:

Path of Exile – some friends just got back into the game. I’ve never played it, but I loved Diablo 2 and Diablo 3, as well as the 2 Torchlight games so I’m sure I’ll be hooked on this one as well. The goal here is basically to catch up to my friends, who are much higher level than me as of this post.

Heroes of the Storm – I play Heroes on and off, but one consistency for me is that I love to collect things for the character Li-Ming. Playing with some friends last night, I realized that Li-Ming has a new Legendary Skin that’s 2400 shards. Without spending any money, I’m going to try to unlock at least one color of that skin to add to my collection. I’m currently at 840 shards.

Overwatch – When Overwatch first came out, I played it a bunch and got really into it. In a similar fashion to Li-Ming above, Widowmaker is my character of choice to try and unlock everything. There is a new summer event going on and I’d like to unlock at least the Widowmaker skin from that set, so I guess I need to return to the game!

FFXIV – The Moonfire Faire event update was Tuesday. I’m planning to do that, which shouldn’t take long. For more long-term goals, I plan on finishing Black Mage to 70 just to have other options besides Samurai. I’ve recently lost interest in XIV, so I haven’t been playing it as much so this goal may take the longest.

Fortnite – Mini-goal here, but I’ve been playing a lot of Fortnite since it hit Early Access and my current goal on that game is to get my Legendary Hero(Ninja) to Rank 3. I just unlocked the node, but I need to farm up some more hero EXP before I can rank her up.

Closing:

That’s pretty much it for this entry. Not all of my posts will be this ridiculously long, but I wanted to set the tone for my return to blogging. I hope you enjoyed it if you got this far and I hope you stick around for more posts. I’ll be updating on these goals over the next few weeks to see how much progress I’ve made. Until next time~

J.A.

The World of Khroma

The Last Continent: Khroma

Today I’d like to talk about the setting of my book. For those who have yet to read it, or even briefly skim the prologue – I tried to make the setting of my book different and unique. Yes, the events of the book do take place on Earth. This Earth is the same Earth we’re living on right now but this is far off into the future. The world itself has been plunged into chaos and the world is at war. This ultimately leads to the destruction of our planet and in it’s rebirth – we are introduced to the last continent: Khroma.

“So the world ends in fire after all…” – Fredrick Marshe, 53rd and final President of the United States of America.

Khroma is basically every fantasy fan’s dream world. It features elves, demons, dragons, angels and even cat-girls. It has a little something for everyone. The key here is that it stems from what our world used to be and reverts back into medieval times. To me, this makes the story a lot more interesting because it’s not a completely different world. It’s an extension of our own world. When the world is in shambles and the angels come down from Heaven to piece it back together, they assign a young woman by the name of Simone Fair to help repopulate the world. She is granted immortality and is forced to give birth every year to a child of a different genetic code. This helps build the foundation of the new world in which Kings and Queens rise to power and young warriors, like the main protagonist Vallick Halstar, are forced to find their place. But things aren’t all fun and exciting on Khroma, it’s actually the opposite.

“The mother of Earth? There’s nothing left but despair and misery. Why would anyone want to be the mother of this?”  -Simone Fair

A fierce race known as the Dragonkin has risen to power in the east side of the continent and a group of warriors known as the Dragon Knights of Bawal are given the task with ending this bestial tyranny. It is in this conflict that the story of A Soldier’s Crest begins and the main characters are set forth on an arduous journey. Khroma, the future of our planet, is where these legendary battles will take place. The future of A Soldier’s Crest is bright and the series is just beginning. More stories are on the way. I will also be doing more posts like this one to explain settings, races, characters and whatever else I feel like talking about in regards to book 1 and future books. Look forward to it!