Category Archives:  Mentoring

The Madness Goes to Buffalo

Octoberlogoresizefinal[1]Today we bring you an interview that editor Michell Plested did with Mad Scientist-author Hugh J. O’Donnell and his co-host Pat Toner, on the Way of the Buffalo podcast.

The Way Of the Buffalo

They talk about how the book got started and a great host of other things.

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Posted by on August 8, 2013 in  Mentoring, books, Interviews, Writing


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The Evil Art Of Getting Back to The Basics

sheepOne of the Topics that we only partially covered in A Method To the Madness: A Guide To the Super Evil is that of starting over again when you fail, get defeated decide to take a different route, want to, can be therapeutic. Not to mention the lessons that can be learned.

I recently suffered set back with some of my minions decided to take stock in my situation in regards to those in my employ and get back to some basics. There is nothing like getting back to the very basics of basics to remind you of how it is done.

So Minions / henchmen / Sheep.

Yes, that is right, Sheep. You know some times you really have to get back to basics. I am not saying that everyone should always go this far but some times you need to go back to the beginning.

I am not saying that our undersea lab sprung a major leak do to um outside pressure and that on the same day out orbital space platform lost power because someone ripped the solar panels off, and who knew that the insurance companies don’t cover things like that on your home owners insurance, and that we were forced to return to our pedestrian home like everyone else and plant a garden and raise sheep as part of a farming collective to keep costs down. I am not saying any of those things. What I am saying is that herding sheep can be a good way to remind yourself of the basics of dealing with minions.

Some times you need to give them a good swat to get them to go where you want, some times you need a watch dog or a sheep dog to help keep them in line, and sometimes you need to just release a wolf into the fold and just let him have at the stupid sheep… I mean some times you need to stop shearing one of them and have lamb chops for dinner.

Sometimes you just need to sit down and take stock of where you are. You need listen to the advice of others. You need to read a good book like, Oh I don’t know, A Method To the Madness: A Guide To The Super Evil to figure out where you went wrong.

Enough with the advice, I have sheep to herd.
The (recently relocated) Dark Lord


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There is nothing that you can do that we can’t do better: Or Superheroes stink!

LowerRight_1_[1]Today we have the um, honor of posting this note from, Dr. Evil-n-Carnate: A.K.A. Steve Wolencheck, current occupant of cubical 3257J who is one of the contributors to A Method To the Madness: A Guide To The Super Evil

Welcome to the 7th circle of the underworld my friend, or as the people around me call it, Unitide Incorporated. It is from here that I rule all that I survey. And by rule I mean I make everyone who enters my domain miserable. Really I do, you should read the article about how to do this in the new book.

But that is not what I am here to talk to you about. The Evil League has chosen me to be the mouth piece for their most recent work, and I am honored to do so, seeing that I had a lot to do with it. You see I wrote the operating system that runs the computers that they used to make it happen. I write all the operating systems that the Evil league uses. And many of you who use other operating systems, I wrote those two, just because I am that evil.

So on to the information:

It has come to our attention that the so called boy superhero Mik Murdoch, whose so called adventures you can read about in the Prix Aurora nominated book by the same name, has rescued the editor Michell Plested and his family. He has them hidden away in some “safe house” some where and they are now under his “protection.” A lot of good that will do them.

292px-TheDoctorMik, as of yesterday we pumped the safe house full of knockout gas and replaced the editor and his family with sophisticated holograms. They are so life like you would not even know they were not real. You remember the Doctor on the Star Trek Voyager series? They make him look like he was written in GWBasic. Not even 7 of 9 with a 24th century tricorder could tell them from the real thing, but believe me they are replacements.180px-Seven_of_Nine,_2376

So as you can tell, you superheroes really don’t stand a chance against us. And to all you aspiring super villains out there, get yourself a copy of A Method to the Madness: A Guide To The Super Evil, and you too might one day be able to be as evil as we are. Well, probably not that evil, but you will be a lot more evil that you would have been if you didn’t read the book.

Dr. Evil-n-Carnate: A.K.A. Steve Wolencheck, current occupant of cubical 3257J, affectionately referred to as “that jerk who eats lunch in his cubicle even though we have a lunch room and he really should eat there”, was born in Leftovershoe. From those humble beginnings all those years ago, he began a rise to the top. He is a humble computer programmer by day, but by night, and sometimes late in the afternoon because he had to get up early for work, he fights the eternal fight against good. He hopes that one day he will have the power to crush good forever, but for now is satisfied with making sure that this office mates suffer needlessly.


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Posted by on May 14, 2013 in  Mentoring, Succession, Writing


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Another update from one of the Evil League

aMttM-aGttSE_finalThe Evil League has been very busy lately. Some of them have kidnapped one of the editors of the book, while others have been gearing up for world domination. In this case they have a message for you.

When Your Grubby Mits Will Be Able to Hold A Minute Fragment of My Wisdom

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Posted by on April 15, 2013 in  Mentoring, books, Promotion, Writing



A Release Date

Today, Five Rivers Press announced the official publication date for A Method to the Madness: A Guide to the Super Evil of July 1 2013.

We caught up with one of the many authors, Dr. Evil-n-Carnate, Frequent Flyer, Grocery Shopper and Overlord Of Cubical Block 3257J, just outside his head quarters this morning and he had this to say about the announcement:

We had to drag out the fire hoses to stop the party in minion housing. They still have work to do. All those bits and bytes are not going to arrange themselves and Alex (our 486 Beowulf Cluster) is busy with, ummm, his shopping list.

Five Rivers Press also announced that you could pre-order your copy of the book from now until June 30th at a reduced price (25% off).

Evil Pro Tip:

If I were an evil genius on a budget, I would jump all over that.

Last, there is a contest. All of the various authors have alter ego bio’s hidden out in the vastness of the internet. There are links to these in the book itself, but you can start searching now. There are prizes to those who find all of them. There are more details about this, the book, the release date, the authors and many other things in the update from Five Rivers.

Good luck and happy overlording.

-Jeff Hite

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Posted by on March 8, 2013 in  Mentoring


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To the CONS!

From the Desk of Alex – The 486 Beowulf Cluster


[Alex@alexbeowulf ~]$ read to_the_cons_post

While publishing your schedule of events isn’t strictly against the rules of the various evil organizations around the world, it is usually frowned upon. Especially if you are planning a public display of your greatness and don’t really want any of your nemesis showing up and foiling your plans. And it is always a bit risky if you are trying to avoid being seen, or captured, (for those of you who are shall we say outside of the law.)

While all of this is true, sometimes it is a good thing to let people know that you are going to be at a certain place at a certain time. Like when you plan to meet them for coffee, or share with them a project that you have been working on. [Hint Hint Hint!]

With that in mind, we, the editors of A Method to the Madness: A Guide to the Super Evil, are announcing that we will be at Balticon this year. We are hopeful that many of the other authors will be as well. In fact, if you know that you are going to be there please leave a comment so your hordes of minions, groupies, fans whatever will know where you are.

Here is to hoping to test out our diabolical devices, I mean hoping to see you there.

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Posted by on February 12, 2013 in  Mentoring


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Jeff and Alex – The Break up

So last week you might have seen a little spat that @Alex_486beowulf and I had on twitter. Somehow he got it in his outdated-microchipped-head that he was the one going to take over the world.  And that suddenly I was the minion and not the other way around.

While we have not official stopped working together, let’s just say that he is currently running only essential programs attempting to locate a new power supply before his UPS’s run out.  

And that leads me to the topic of today.  I have heard it said that certain jobs require you to have a bit of an ego.  Fighter pilot, head chef, race car driver and to some extent the tech support guy.  But being an supervillain requires more ego than any of the rest of them.  That is why you so seldom hear of them teaming up, and why when they do team up it rarely works out.

Think about it.  If you don’t have a super ego, and I am not talking about the kind of super ego that wacky German guy was talking about, then how are you going to drive your minions?  What? You think that they are just going to do whatever you want because of that winning personality of yours?

Let me tell you something buddy, being a supervillain means spending a lot of nights alone in the lab, alone at the library, alone writing your manifesto.  And as much as you might at been voted most popular guy/girl/other in high school (though I certainly doubt that), all that time alone tends to cause your social skills to take a serious dip.  And while a few minions might have remained loyal to you just because you used to be a great guy, the majority of them are going to need a little bit more encouragement than that.

You have got to have a ego that fills the room when you walk in.  It needs to suck the air out of all those around, take the wind right out of their sails so that everyone is paying attention to you.  If you are working with someone who has an ego as big as your own – well you can see the trouble.  And this is where Alex I are right now.

Fortunately for him I value his services. And while I could have just smashed him to bits for his insolence at suggesting I bring him a cup of coffee, I have decided that I would just make life a little bit more difficult for him.  Don’t tell him, but if he starts getting too low on power, and he will apologize to me, and of course deletes all those world domination programs he has been writing on his own, I’ll more than likely plug him back in.

So if you are thinking of teaming up with another supervillain, it is important to figure out well in advance who it is who will rule the world before you begin.


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5 Reasons to Write an Essay for The Mad Scientist Anthology

Greetings all you  lackeys minions underlings pitiful people running around with your pitiful little lives wonderful people, the Dark Lord Hite  here.  With just shy of two months to get your submissions in to the Mad Scientist Anthology I realized that some of you might be a little hesitant to submit your good advice to those up and coming.  And you have good reason not to.  I mean they are your rivals, or future rivals.  Then again with the way some of you are going, they might very soon be your betters, but why bring that up now.

Right now I want to give you some good reasons why you might want to share your advice with the up and coming super villian, evil doctor, or mad scientist.  In fact, I want to give you five good reasons to do so.

1.  Succession.  No one likes to think about it but eventually it will be time to hand the vast amounts of power that you have accumulated over a (or maybe several) lifetime(s) down to a worthy successor.  Your cloning / cryogenics / life extending drugs are working out great, but at some point you will be ready to give it all up.  There are only so many worlds you can conquer so many peoples you can oppress (if you are into that) so many baths you can take, only so many cups of tea you can drink.  And let’s face it, as evil as insulting everyone in the universe in alphabetical order is, it is has been done!

But, you say, I had already planned to hand my power over to Joe the minion.   As much as you really like Joe the minion is he really ruler of the known universe material.  I mean sure he has been with you from day one, sure you gave his daughter away at the wedding, you gave him everything he has.  He might even be expecting you to hand power over to him.  He may even be like a son to you.  But there is a problem with sons, they don’t always live up to their fathers expectations.  Take a moment now, look at Joe. Look deep into his eyes.  Is he really the one you want to hand the universe over to?  Now think about it.  Think about the greatest emperors of Rome.  Sure their empire is tiny (or huge as the case may be) compared to yours but,  did they hand power over to their sons?  No, they looked around and found the best possible successor, trained them, brought them up right, made sure they had every tool they needed, (some tips and tricks from above hint, hint, hint.)  And let me tell you when they did hand power over to their sons it was never pretty, think Nero, Commodus, Little Boots  Caligula. (giggle snort, his name means little boots.  Like the ones your mother knitted.  I will remember that forever.  I must remember to write an article about how you have to be careful about nicknames.)

2.   Philanthropy.  Let’s face it no one really likes a dark overlord of the universe. They may grovel at your feet, beg for your forgiveness, you might even get a smile or two. But when your back is turned, or as soon as you are out of sight or earshot it is totally different story.  But if you give to those in need, if you build roads for them, if you are seen occasionally dishing out bowls of soup at the kitchen (even if it was your stupid brother wearing a mask) people will have a harder time cursing your name.  Not impossible mind you, but it will be harder for them to swear revenge on the guy who just put a roof over their head or gave them the plans for the space laser they have always wanted.  Sometimes you can get a few flies caught in the honey that you set out to use in your experiments.  I mean, well never mind.

3.  Your Good Name.  You only have one reputation, you need to protect it.  As a famous pirate once said, “Once word gets out that you are going soft, it is just work, work, work all the time.”  Unfortunately the rumor mill can be your worst enemy, and by mere association with those that hold a similar title as you, it can sully your reputation.  It is like getting in a fight and getting a black eye.  You might have won the fight, you might have even won decisively, though I kind of doubt that is the case, but you still walk away with a black eye.

The same can be said if those lesser villains get their lunches handed to them on steel trays now.

That was a Mad scientist, they will say.  Wasn’t our overlord of the universe a mad scientist at one time?  How come he was never put in jail? How come he is free to roam the world?  Maybe he should be behind bars, they will say.  Is that what you really want?  No of course not.

So what do you do.  You give them some information.  When you see them getting ready to trip and fall on their face, help them out a little.  I am not saying give them all your secrets, but maybe enough to keep them out of jail and looking bad in the eye of the public.   Remind them to tie their shoes before they leave the house so to speak.

It can do a world of good for your good name.  Don’t let those bumbling idiots get caught by a hero, or for heaven sakes worse the regular police.  No get them up past that point.  Let them be a menace to society, and then CRUSH THEM YOURSELF!  You would be surprise the good will that will get you.  See #2.

4.  Mentoring. If you take the time to mentor other villains you would be surprised what they will do for you.  A good mentor gives tools (for example articles to a book like A Method To The Madness: A Guide to The Super Evil) to help those under themselves.

If you are someone’s mentor you would be surprised what they might be willing to do for you.  Much more than running and getting you coffee, though that is always nice, but they will defend you, they will support you.  They might even take a bullet for you.  Sure your super armor most likely would have stopped it but really, why take that chance.  Besides Mentor are revered in the community, and if you don’t want to be hounded by the heros and the police every day you need to be thought highly of, at least until you are powerful enough that it no longer matters.  See #2 and #3.

Of course there is always the chance that the that this person you are mentoring will one day be a good successor.  See #1. And if you don’t want your sucessor to have to run around Rome scratching your name off monuments, you need to think of these things.

5.   Good Coffee. Really is there any better reason to anything than a good cup of coffee?  I am not saying that by writing an article that someone will bring you a good cup of coffee, but you never know.  Sometimes good advice can bring some surprise rewards.  You can even reward yourself for all of the above reasons with a good cup of coffee after you are done.

I sit here now finishing this looking over at my hot steaming mug and know it will be waiting for me.  Besides if you are nice to your underlings, those up and coming maybe they will invite you over to their house and give you a good cup of coffee, and you can learn where they keep their fresh roasted beans and break in later that night and steal them.  You are evil after all.

Or better yet after several up and coming villains have invited you over and served you their best, you will know who makes the best coffee, so that when you do take over, you know who to spare and put in your kitchen making your coffee.

So there you have five good reasons to write an article for The Mad Scientist Anthology.  Now, what are you waiting for?


Posted by on April 12, 2012 in  Mentoring, good reasons, Philanthropy, Succession


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