Silber Cupcake Recipe

Here’s the cupcake recipe some of you have tasted at various Silber events.  It’s derived from a recipe my grandmother cut out of a newspaper.  It yields 20 cupcakes.

Cake Batter
¼ cup of cocoa
1 ½ cups of flour
1 cup of sugar
¼ cup vanilla soy protein
1 teaspoon of baking soda
1 teaspoon of salt
1 cup of water
1/3 cup of oil
1 tablespoon of vinegar
1 teaspoon of vanilla

Mix dry ingredients thoroughly. Add liquids & mix until mixture is consistent

Cream Cheese Top/Core
1/8 teaspoon of salt
8 ounces of cream cheese
1/3 cup of sugar
1 egg

Leave pack of cream cheese out to reach room temperature, mix as thoroughly as practical.

Butterscotch Chips
Add 4-6 chips per cupcake, optional or change flavor.

You can either leave a white cream cheese top or attempt a hidden cream cheese core. To get a top, distribute batter to bottom of cupcake papers evenly among the 20 cups & add the cream cheese mixture to the top, sprinkle with chips. For the core put in enough batter to cover the bottoms of the cups, distribute cream cheese mixture, sprinkle chips, put remaining batter over top of cups hiding the cream cheese.

Cook at 350 for approximately 22-25 minutes.

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Nostalgia Equals Distortion: Woods Beer

woods-beerWhen I was a kid there was a park that was mainly woods halfway between me & my best friend’s houses.  It’s where we’d hang out every afternoon to do things we might get in trouble about at home.  Things like setting a creek on fire while swinging over it on a vine.  Typical middle school stuff.  But other folks that we never saw used the woods too.  Presumably folks just a couple years older than us & while there would routinely be empty beer cans around, occasionally we’d find half a case of unopened Budweisers.  Which to a twelve-year-old eager to be an adult was as good as gold.

Woods Beer was a right of passage for suburban punks in the 1980s & to be honest I have no idea if it is still something that happens.  I don’t think underage kids drink in the woods & stash their beers there anymore & I don’t really see middle schoolers wandering the streets on their own either.  But maybe people didn’t see me back then either, so I could be wrong.  Anyway a few weeks ago I bought some beers that I thought were kinda crap.  An apple beer might sound like it has potential, but for me it’s just candy crap.  So today I went out in the woods looking for a place off the path with some cigarette butts & I found some by a log.  I dropped the beers off there.  Maybe I’m contributing to the delinquency of a minor or maybe I’m littering or maybe, just maybe, I’m giving a future generation an experience they’ll remember fondly twenty-five years down the line.

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Snow Days

So I know haven’t been posting on the blog lately.  As some of you know, that usually means I’ve been working on a ton of stuff.

First off, the new QRD is up.  A continuation of the guitarist interview series & the last part that will be completed in our big ebook project.

On the comic book front I got completed scripts for Built #3 & Ultimate Lost Kisses #15 mailed out to the artists.

But as you most likely suspect I’ve mainly been working on promo stuff for the new If Thousands & Electric Bird Noise records.

Also, there was a bunch of snow here where I live (which doesn’t happen) & it’s slowed me down on getting some orders ready, including one of thirty comics which meant needing to print them all out, which takes longer than you’d think.

Just so this isn’t a completely boring entry, here’s a Clang Quartet video:

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Electric Bird Noise, If Thousands, Facebook, Dreams

So I got the new Electric Bird Noise & the new If Thousands up on the Silber site.  They are both available to purchase or free to stream.  In going with my recent goals of rebuilding the community feel on Silber, anyone who wants to write a little blurb about either of the records I’ll put them on the reviews page with links back to your sites.

James from Plumerai sent me this video about how likes & advertisements on Facebook work.  It helps to put things in perspective when you see smarter people than you having the same problems.

Recent Dreams:
February 6, 2014
I’m playing a house show in the front yard of a house a block from the house I grew up in.  The neighborhood’s kinda shot & I don’t feel comfortable walking up the hill to the old house in the dark.

February 10, 2014
I wake up & look at my left arm & all my scars are gone.  I guess this is what death is like.  It’s not so bad.

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Remora – Bring You In

So I got a demo for a new Remora song.  Might record it as a full band this afternoon.  We’ll see how it goes.

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Quiet, not sleeping

A lot going on here at Silber.

On the comic front I’ve got two new comics finished (Lost Kisses #26 & Come Home Safe #2) & shipped out to subscribers. I wrote scripts for Walrus #2 & Built #3. I got word from Jeremy Johnson that Marked #4 is imminent on the drawing being done. Ed Delaney says Pow Wow #3 should be done shortly as well. At least four other scripts out with artists that should be done sooner than later.

Been working on the press releases for If Thousands, Electric Bird Noise, Feel No Other, & Slicnaton which is basically the only thing holding these releases back for so long. Hoping to have them up in the next week or two available for purchase.

This weekend there’s a full band Remora show & allegedly a full band studio recording session. We’ll see how it all goes.

I launched the Kickstarter campaign for the QRD Guitarist eBook & Compilation. I am fairly hopeful for it. We’ll just have to wait & see what happens with it.

There’s some behind the scenes stuff going on here at Silber that I think is going to result in us putting out more content on a regular basis.  We’ll see how it goes.  Basically I’m trying to bring Silber back around to being the community I once envisioned it to be rather than exclusively my show as far as doing all the labor & feeling over pressured about everything.  We’ll see if I really can get myself to let go enough to make that happen.

Here’s a recent super minimalist recording/video from Plumerai:

Recent Dreams:
January 25, 2014
My parents are cleaning their house & they are throwing out a bunch of half completed &/or broken craft projects of my grandmother’s. I gather them all out of the trash. I know they are useless, but I’m not ready for them to be thrown away yet.

I’m in high school with Michael Wood & we’re gambling, playing dice with two ten-sided-dies (one blue & one red).

There’s a worldwide totalitarian regime that is ignorant of the impending destruction of the world. But there is a way to survive, hopping through a gateway to another dimension. The gate was built by bees & is in a dug out crawlspace under a typical suburban house. Under the house there are maybe 20 of us waiting for the bees to open the portal including a pregnant woman on a gurney (I have no idea how she managed to get down here). The bees open the portal & flood through & everyone goes in behind them. I’m trying to push the gurney through the portal & it’s caught in the dirt & too heavy for me to move. A woman comes in with a five-year-old child & I get them each to grab hold of the gurney & they take it with them as they are pulled through & I fall on the ground from pushing it. When I stand up the portal has shrunk down to the size of my hand & I watch it fade to be too small for even a bee to make it through.

January 27, 2014
My cat is moving into an apartment with me. I feel really bad about throwing all his stuff away when he died ten years ago, but I didn’t think I’d see him again.

January 28, 2014
I go to see Irata play a live show as the soundtrack to a demolition derby. I’m kinda shocked by how slow & boring the car crashes are.

I’m outside in my yard & a cop walks down my driveway carrying a sawed-off shotgun covered in mud & he asks if it’s mine. I tell him it’s probably my nephew’s. He asks if I’d mind if he checked my car & I watch as he plants & then pulls out a revolver from my backseat. When he starts to arrest me & goes into who he thinks I am, it’s clear he thinks I’m my neighbor across the street; but I don’t think there’s even a reason to bother to try to explain that to him.

January 29, 2014
I show up at a comic convention & check in at the table. When I go to get my stuff out of my car I realize I forgot to pack any merchandise. I’ve been way too busy lately….

February 2, 2014
I’m with Nic Slaton on tour & we’re listening to a staticy fading out jazz station. I say, “It sucks that I’m not a jazz player because when jazz players get old they become gristled & cool, but white people like me just get old & crotchety.”

February 4, 2014
I’m looking for some place for me & my grandmother to live. I find a furnished home where the master bedroom has a double bed in it as well as a twin bed so I’ll finally be able to sleep in my own bed without worrying if she’s fallen out of hr bed in the middle of the night.

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Comics, Triangle Rhysing, Chvad SB, Dreams

Been getting some work done lately behind the scenes. Finished drawing Come Home Safe #2 (still need to scan it in), halfway finished drawing the next Lost Kisses, got a script written & sent out to the artist for Seabase 17 (new series), & I put a few more comics up on Amazon (not a lot of sales luck there yet, but I am hopeful).

Here’s a video from the Triangle Rhysing massed guitar thing I took part in last year:

& here’s a video from Chvad SB who will be having a release on Silber shortly. It’s a long drone.

Recent Dreams:
January 18, 2014
After years of living in squalor & depravity I finally meet Jesus face to face. He’s much shorter than I anticipated (maybe 5’2”) & looks like his body’s been broken down from a life of hard labor. I tell him I thought he’d be taller & he just shrugs his shoulders.

We’re having Eggo waffles for breakfast, but we’re out of butter. My girlfriend is about to smother them in suntan lotion & I tell her to wait & try one first before putting it on all of them.

At a Remora show I’m playing the song “More than the Sky.” I don’t know the words or the notes, but the music is just falling out of me more beautifully than any song ever has.

I’m going on tour with a band called Regulaters & I’m trying to convince them we need to buy a sack of fruit for in the van, but they don’t think it’s very rock & roll.

January 19, 2014
I’m staying at PD Wilder’s house on tour & the bathroom is lit from the floor rather than the ceiling. The lights are under huge glass tiles & I’m trying to pry one up, but they seem sealed. I’m on the floor trying to figure them out & PD opens the door & laughingly says, “What the hell are you doing?”

I wake up & see my girlfriend in the bedroom doorway, but turning to my left she’s still lying next to me on the bed. It must be her twin sister. I start to get out of bed & the twin comes over & pulls the blankets off of us & plunges a pair of scissors into my girlfriend’s chest. I manage to push her away before she can pull the scissors out to let my girlfriend’s blood spew out of her. My girlfriend starts to wake up & I’m trying to figure out how to break the news to her while keeping her sister at bay.

January 20, 2014
I’m lost driving on the outskirts of a small town. I’m past its second (& final) stoplight, curving around the two-lane road to what I assume is a baseball field on the left. The edges of the field furthest from me have a series of castle facades & in the field are people in costumes that make them look like twelve-foot puppets. The monster costumes look more tragic than frightening & I kind of wish I was one of them.

I’m checking out a local comic shop on the way to a convention. It is converted from a house & has separate rooms, but no organization as far as what is in one room to the next. They have a special sale where coupons for various percentages off single comics are randomly hidden amongst back issues, which is kind of a cool idea.

I’m getting sick & when I blow my nose the snot is such a fluorescent green that I think it might actually glow.

January 21, 2014
I’m hanging out with my friends Ben & Arabella & they’re telling me that they’re going to be sent back in time as part of a witness relocation program & I realize that they are actually going to become my parents.

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Music, Comics, Facebook, Cats, & Muscle Mass

Today was a super productive day.  I got the last of the royalty checks out to the bands on the label, which is one of my favorite parts of running the label.  I always wish I could get out more money to the bands, maybe one day.

So I came up with this idea of putting my comics in vinyl bowls to sell at an event I did about a month ago.  Then a couple days ago I asked a couple people if I sent them 40 comics in a bowl would they sell them & give me $20 & I got a few folks wanting them.  So I assembled the comics & got those ready to ship.  I’m pretty excited that I may have finally figured something out for that & I’m hoping to get the comics available a few more places.  We’ll see how it goes.

I went ahead & invested potentially as much as $10 on Facebook trying to promote the Silber $13 download sale.  So far I’ve spent $2.96 for 12,067 views & a few clicks, but so far no extra sales.  But I do think it has the potential to pay for itself & that I may have finally figured out how to use Facebook in a way as useful as MySpace was 7 years ago.

There’s a cat I sometimes hang out with called Tobin.  Here he is playing my keyboard:

Tobin on the keyboard

Tobin on the keyboard

So as you know I did a lot of traveling last fall.  I shot some video out the van window.  Here’s some footage & a new song from Muscle Mass:

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Working not twerking

I spent most of yesterday trying to help my nephew on a school project so he won’t fail English this year.  It seems to be something that happens every few months though it varies which class he’s failing instead of getting D’s in.  Last year when he said, “It’s no big deal if I fail the seventh grade, I’ll just be in it again next year,” I kinda knew there would be an ongoing problem.  I guess it’s a good thing that I think the main purpose of school is babysitting until someone is old enough to work, but I kinda hoped he’d get some work ethic skills to help him in life.  When I was his age all I cared about (in order) was music, comics, drugs, & girls so who am I to really judge?

On the Silber front I started trying to do some stuff to increase the effectiveness of the Silber Facebook page.  After five hours I realized I was falling into the same traps I have in the past as far as doing work that is pointless & ultimately depressing.  I should have spent those same five hours working up a press release for one of the upcoming releases or working up a cover song.  I mean, I know things I could do to get Silber more popular on Facebook, but I should be spending time trying to get Silber more popular in real life.  Which means not letting myself slip into certain traps with social media marketing & promotional stuff & sticking to creating content.  We’ll see if I can get myself on task. I think it’s clear it’s more effective for me to pay Facebook $5 for an ad to spread the word about an album & maybe generate back those $5 than for me to spend five hours trying to get the word out by hand. I noticed today that if I put a post with a link it gets significantly less transmission on Facebook than if I just put something as text. I’m not sure what to do with that information, but I thought some of you might find it interesting.

I came up with the idea of sending my comics in vinyl record bowls to some friends to sell at conventions & stores with us splitting the profit 50-50. We’ll see how it works out. In the mean time I suppose I need to assemble a ton of comics.

Stumbled on this video.  Can’t decide if it’s depressing or uplifting, so you decide for me.

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Most Read Silber Comics of 2013

Top 10 Most Read Silber Comics of 2013:
Lost Kisses #24
So this was a new issue of Lost Kisses that came out this year, so to me it’s no huge surprise it was the most read book of 2013.  I guess it’s still the most popular series no matter how uncomfortable people get reading it.

Cyberpunk Apocalypse Artistic Evidence
While I got back from my Cyberpunk Apocalypse Residency on November 29, it took me a little while to get the book about it done & so it wasn’t delivered to the Kickstarter backers until January.  At several hundred pages, this is our biggest endeavor so far, but a hint at the future of us doing ebooks in 2014.

Ultimate Lost Kisses #11
No surprise that this collaboration with Dave Sim remains near the top of our list.  I got an award plaque for this for a reason, I like to think it’s the quality because who would want to read such a depressing story if it was shitty?

Just A Man #1
My cowboy comic.  I love this book.  I actually got an award for the animated version of this comic (just a slideshow of it basically).  Anyway, the skull cover Andrew White drew is pretty iconic & it was part of the first issues bundle that people got.

Built #1
My robot story drawn by Joe Badon, after however long I think some new stories are about to fall out of my brain.  Part of the first issues bundle.

REH #1
I love Robert E Howard & I write these odd autobio style speculative biography pieces.  I think they are pretty good.  Drawn by Andrew White.  Part of the first issues bundle.

XO #1
I love XO.  I can’t remember if it was my first comic with a collaborator or if Worms was.  I could write XO comics for days on end, but unfortunately that doesn’t make them easier for Melissa to draw them.  Sigh….  Part of the first issues bundle.

Worms #1
This series works really well for me.  Probably the best thing I’ve done as far as writing a story & really getting the perfect artist to tell it.  Without Kimberlee Traub I think this story would be boring & with her I feel like it’s a claustrophobic creepy dream journey that works well.  Part of the first issues bundle.

XLK #1
This isn’t part of the first issues bundle, so I’m not sure what got it to boost up to this download position.  It’s drawn by Nick Marino, so maybe he was driving some traffic to it or something?  Supposedly this series will one day continue.  It’s kind of a Rambo parody in this issue, but in the future it’s more of a Nick Fury & Deadpool parody.

Walrus #1
I’m really glad this made the list.  Drawn by Jared Catherine, Walrus is unquestionably the most fun comic I’ve ever written.  I want to do a follow-up, but I also kinda think I can’t top it.  A walrus playing saxophone after the apocalypse… there’s a reason I picked this as the first Silber comic to go up on Amazon.

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