Semantic Shenanigans Episode 9 – If You Build It, They Will Fan

Semantic Shenanigans Episode 09 – If you build it, they will fan

If you build it, they will fan!

Semantic Shenanigans Episode 1 – Origin Stories

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Social Stuff


Shanna is wrapping up her course work at BGSU this summer, navigating summer employment, and has missed Barbara Eden at Motor City ComicCon.


Janet has a manuscript out for querying; the publisher asked for the entire MS so that is good news! There are no guarantees that the book will be accepted, but this is still rather good news. This one is more of a space opera, where ships leave from Earth about 500 years from now in the search for multicellular life.

Making a Fandom from Scratch

To provide some background for our listeners before we introduce our guests, Janet gives us some insights into the writing and publishing business. She covers topics such as NaNoWriMo and the differences between indie publishing and self publishing. Learn more about self-publishing from The Lamron and Clayburn Books, and get some surprising self-publishing statistics here. Creating a fandom from scratch is a lot like creating anything from more or less nothing. But for indie authors, leveraging their networks is crucial. And don’t underestimate the power of a terrific cover and a fun personality.

R.R. (Ronnie) Virdi and Brandon Varnell

Dragon Award-nominated author R.R. (Ronnie) Virdi and American Kitsune writer Brandon Varnell join us to give us an idea of what it’s like to build a fandom from scratch! Among the many topics we discuss are how each author developed their story world, the importance of networking, advice for writers considering the indie or self-publishing route, and the importance of a GREAT cover.

Check out R.R. Virdi’s covers, done by Sarah Anderson:

If You Build it they will fan

Brandon’s come from a Deviant Artist called Snow the Wanderer:

Semantic Shenanigans - American Kitsune - build

See the link list below for all the different ways you can connect with Ronnie and Brandon. We had a blast with them, and we hope to have them on the show again in the future!

Legal Update

Though we didn’t discuss it much, Janet found an article on Quartz about Axanar and the fan film guidelines that seemed pretty fair and balanced. Let us know what you think!

Star Trek: Discovery Trailer Drops Like It’s Hot!

The much-anticipated Star Trek: Discovery trailer dropped the day before we recorded, and we couldn’t wait to talk about it! Among the things we love is the ethnically diverse cast, especially when it comes to seeing women of color in positions of authority. We also can’t get enough of those great makeup effects on the aliens, and yay – Vulcans!

Related to the trailer, Shanna and Janet talk about the difficulties inherent in making a prequel series, and also take on some of the gripes about the trailer already emerging in the fandom, particularly related to the Klingon aesthetic. For some theorizing about why the Klingons look different in Discovery, click here.

RIP Chris Cornell

Grunge music fans were saddened to learn of the death of Chris Cornell, frontman of the bands Soundgarden and Audioslave. Soundgarden had been on tour, and Cornell died just hours after their Detroit show in his Motor City Casino hotel room. He will be deeply missed by the music world. Our hearts go out to his family and loved ones.

Do you have memories you’d like to share about Chris Cornell? Or maybe you have some thoughts about indie publishing? Tell us in the comments, if you like. Or send us a note!

Thank you!

Thanks for listening! Our show would not be possible without the help, kindness, and generosity of some truly wonderful people. First of all, we would like to thank Busy Little Beaver Productions and more specifically the G & T Show for giving us this great opportunity. We would also like to thank our music providers, Cerys and Kailani of Invocation Array. Thank you, ladies!

So our biggest thanks go to sound engineer extraordinaire, Michael Medeiros, and his niece, Katie, our announcer girl. Yes, we have the only announcer who has to take a break and study fractions and the times tables.

Furthermore, we would also like to thank our families for instilling in us our curious and creative impulses, and for encouraging us in all we do.

Finally, thank you, our audience. Because you’re why we are here. We do this for you.

Our Next Show

Because it’s summer, and both Janet and Shanna have some big things going on, we won’t be recording as regularly over the next few months. Check back with our blog for information on our next show, and in the meantime, we’ll have some more bite-sized extras for you this summer. Is there a topic you’d like to see us cover? Maybe one of those things that make you go “hmmmmmm….”? Let us know – it may be a perfect idea for an extra!

Show Note URLs

Finally, please check out these links about our guests and everything else we talked about!


Motor City Comic Con

Build a Fandom from Scratch

R.R. (Ronnie) Virdi

Brandon Varnell

Legal Updates on Axanar

Star Trek Discovery Trailer!

Chris Cornell

Busy Little Beaver Productions and The G & T Show

While you’re here, please check out our parent show and the links to our sister shows.

Invocation Array

Thank you SO much, Cerys and Kailani!

Mike & Announcer Girl Katie

And Mike is a published author, too! Please check out his work. It’s just wonderful.

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