All posts by Ater Imber

Ater Imber became interested in writing fan fiction in 2013 after being talked into giving the Deviant Art website a chance. Ater began posting to the delight of Supernatural fans and continues to write new fan and non-fan fiction stories with regularity for an eager personal following. Ater also currently has four novellas available for purchase. 'First Try' is Aters’ debut, non-fan fiction novella, and is the newest released. It’s a collection of short stories Ater wrote during school after getting serious about becoming a writer, book-ended by the two ‘long’ first stories Ater ever wrote, published November, 2018. Ater’s third fan fiction novella, 'Holiday Treats', is about the holidays, forbidden love, and what can go wrong when the two collide, published in December 2016. Ater’s debut fan fiction novella, 'Don’t Get Caught', is a collection of short stories centered around a love theme, published in February 2016. Last, but certainly not least, Ater’s second fanfiction novella, 'Melting Hearts, Sunburns and Tanlines' is a collection of short stories with a main theme surrounding going on vacation and love, published in August, 2016. All three of Ater's fanfiction novellas are based on the T.V. series Supernatural. If you’d like to check out Ater’s books, you can do so here: http://aterimber.com/writing/books/ Ater Imber lives in Toronto, Canada.

Set Yourself On Fire (Preview)

Started: 19.10.24

Finished: 20.06.12

Words: 843

NFF, 2021’s Halloween story


“You’re late.”

Charlie chuckled, “Oh, yeah, I’m so sorry.”

Bill chuckled as he watched the brunette punch in, before walking with him to the line, “Oh, c’mon, it could be worse.”

Charlie gave him an incredulous look, “How could it possibly be worse?”

Bill shrugged, “At least you didn’t pull the short straw.”

They watched as Anderson walked by, head hanging. He looked up when he saw the two men before letting out a heavy sigh, “Church Street.”

“Oof,” Charlie let out a low whistle, “Sorry man.”

Bill clapped him on the shoulder, “Good luck.”

Anderson let out a dry chuckle, “Oh yeah, cause luck will beat that priest.”

They watched as he walked to the lockers, shoulders slumped. He sighed heavily again before heading for the door.

“He’s been here 20 years, and they just send him out like that?” Bill shook his head as they took a few steps up in the line, “Poor guy.”

“To be fair, it’s not exactly like they could give him a severance package.”

Bill shot him a look, “What’s the matter with you?”

Charlie shrugged, “I just thought things would be different.”

“Funny,” they moved up a few more steps, “I would’ve thought you’d be happy.”

“What?” Charlies’ brows furrowed in confusion, “Why would I be happy?”

“Because you got your wish.” Bill noticed his expression and gave him a sly smile as they reached the front, “More of the same.”

“Alright,” Adam looked over his clipboard, flipping through a few sheets, “What do I have left…” He ran his finger down the page before nodding, “Ah, right. Bill, you’re off to Queen Street and Charlie…” he flipped the page, “you’re going to Main.”

Charlie scoffed, “Are you joking?”


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Skinny Pop! White Cheddar Popcorn Review

I’m gonna be honest, I love popcorn in basically any form. (The exception being that sweet/sticky stuff people put on it at Christmas… I think it’s called ‘kettle corn’?) And I especially love it when it comes with faux-cheese flavour. Before we discovered I was allergic to dairy products, I used to eat Smartfood White Cheddar Popcorn when we had end-of-year class parties in elementary school, and let me tell you, I was so into that stuff!

Maybe it’s because it was tied to the end of school/beginning of summer, or maybe it’s because I was just so young I still thought everything was amazing, but I was crushed when we discovered my allergy, and I learned that I couldn’t eat one of my favourite treats anymore.

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Now, as I’m sure you’ve guessed, it’s been quite a while since I’ve had the ‘real’ thing (I think it’s been about 20 years now [… how old are people in gr. 2?]), and I don’t know if Skinny Pop! was even trying to emulate it, but this tastes very similar to what I remember the Smartfood popcorn being.

Needless to say, I love this one, too!

Not only do these bags of popcorn bring back fond childhood memories with their flavour, perhaps the best part of them? They (sometimes) come in giant bags!

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Seriously, this thing is roughly the same size as my torso! And yes, it still had a lot of air in it, but that’s still a big bag!

One thing I don’t like about this popcorn, is that the seasoning sometime falls all to the bottom of the bag. This has a simple fix, though. Just shake the bag/turn it upside down for a little bit before you open it to redistribute the flavour.

Speaking of the flavouring, it’s powdery, white and sticks to your fingers. Similar to ketchup dust from chips. But it’s so good, I’m sure you won’t mind licking it off yourself when you finish.

Other than that, there’s not really too much to say about this product. It’s vegan and awesome, and I recommend everyone try it. They also have other flavours, though I’m not sure if all the flavours are vegan. I’ve also tried their plain popcorn one (Green bag), that one was good too.

If you like popcorn, you definitely have to try this one!


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3 Tips On How to Have a Zero Waste Halloween

With cheap, plastic decorations, bulk boxes of individually wrapped candies and chocolates in plastic, and even the costumes, Halloween (or, any holiday, really) definitely doesn’t spring to mind when you think of ‘zero waste’, but that doesn’t mean you can’t still have one!

Yes, it’s totally possible (and not all that much more work) to have a zero waste Halloween!

With just a little tweaking, you can have the zero waste Halloween that your wallet (and planet!) will thank you for having.

 

Tip #1: Make Your Own Treats!

I figured I would start with the hardest tip, and then work our way down. The most environmentally friendly and most zero waste way to still have a kick-ass Halloween is definitely to make your own treats.

Obviously, you can’t pass these out at the door (well, you could, but I don’t think parents would let them eat homemade stranger candy), but if you’re having a grown-up party, or even just your own house party with your kids, this is an awesome tip!

Not only will you get to binge on healthier treats (since you’re buying all the ingredients you need, you’ll know exactly what’s going into them), but I’m sure your kids would love to help bake/create the treats with you. It’s a fun way to spend the day, and you get a reward for all your hard work at the end!

Another bonus of making homemade treats? You can literally make whatever you want! Not that into chocolate? Don’t make it! Really craving a rice crispy square? Get yourself some marshmallows (if searching for vegan ones, I recommend Dandies), and rice cereal and go at it. Want to try homemade chocolate? Go get yourself some cocoa butter and Silk (milk) and go nuts! Rather not eat typical ‘candy’? No problem! Get your bakers hat on, and whip up some cookies, brownies, or whatever other treat your heart desires. And, to make them festive, you could decorate them with the Halloween theme in mind!

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AterImber.com - No. Mad. - 3 Tips on How to Have a Zero Waste Halloween - Halloween Themed Chocolate - Halloween, candy, chocolate, vegan, zero waste, vegan food, food blogger, zero waste tips, homemade treats, candy, sustainable food

The only limitation to the treats you create is your imagination!

If you want to make actual ‘candy’ at home (i.e. lollipops, hard candies like Jolly Ranchers, etc.) you’ll maybe not want to let the kids help with those. Those items require boiling sugar and that stuff gets super hot/a tad dangerous to work with, if you don’t know what you’re doing.

If you want to give some of your homemade treats away (I only recommend doing this to people you know/who trust you enough to actually eat what you hand-make, that way your good intentions don’t end up in the garbage), you can get some jars/containers and decorate them simply before giving them away. Similar to the dry mixes some people give at Christmas. Do them up a little pretty, and people are sure to love them!

 

Tip #2: Don’t Buy a Single-Use Costume

My mom was always really big into Halloween, so maybe this was just my family, but some of my best Halloween memories consist of mix and matching clothes I already had to make my costume. Sure, we had to go buy Halloween make-up (weren’t gonna waste ‘the good stuff’) and maybe a wig, but the majority of our costumes growing up were homemade.

If you don’t want to wear your everyday clothes, check out past year costumes you already have, to see how you can give them a new life as something else, or, go hit up a thrift store (like Value Village), that may have some more specific Halloween-themed pieces. The trick here is to go through what you already have, see what your missing, and then either go get a few choice pieces to complete the look that can be re-used in the future, or change what your costume is, so you can use pieces you already have.

You could also keep a few things from your Capsule Wardrobe purge to keep specifically to wear for Halloween. This way, you won’t care if you have to say, roll it around in the dirt to get the specific look, (we actually did this one year) or cut some holes into it.

Or, you could just forgo the costumes if you’re not going out/not that into it. You could have a house party in your pj’s watching scary movies with family and friends, instead.

 

Tip #3: Buy In Actual Bulk!

If you don’t want to make your own treats, or you don’t have the skills to make one treat in particular that you just absolutely need to make Halloween special to you, try to get it at an actual bulk store!

Here in Canada, we have this place called Bulk Barn, and every year around Halloween, they have a few dedicated bins to Halloween treats. Foil-wrapped chocolates, hard candies, gummy worms with a bat decoration stuck to the bin, etc. Basically they slap a ghost or spider-web on some of their regular offerings and call it a day.

But this is still better than buying those boxes of big-name treats, because you can fill your own container* with the exact amount of treats you’ll need. So yes, this option still gives you waste (depending on what treats you’re buying), but it’s still better than getting a bunch of those giant cardboard boxes (that can’t be recycled! The dyes used to make those silly pictures sometimes prevent the cardboard from being recyclable), filled to the brim with plastic wrappers.

I recommend you go out and buy store-bought treats last, because it will create some more waste than the other options here, but if you absolutely feel you need to, then do it. Zero waste isn’t about denying yourself things you like, or feeling like you have to ‘give up’ things you enjoy, it’s about helping the planet and minimizing your environmental impact.

It’s also impossible to be ‘true’ zero waste in today’s society, so don’t worry too much about trying to be perfect. Everyone creates waste – the trick you need to remember is to create as least as you can, as often as you can. If you create a little bit more than usual once a year, there’s no Zero Waste Police who are gonna show up and fine you, or revoke your zero waste card.

So relax, and have fun!

*Bulk Barn has temporarily suspended it’s BYO policy due to COVID safety practices. Call/check your local bulk store to see if/when the policy will change back


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Feast Mode (Preview)

Written: 21.06.10

Words: 1,416

C2C, 2021’s Thanksgiving fic


“Out of the way!” Dean ran down the bunker stairs, holding the arm that wasn’t carrying six shopping bags out in front of him, “The feast has arrived!”

“And what hole-in-the-wall’s cold turkey entrée did you get this year?” Sam didn’t bother to look up from the book he was reading.

Dean silently mocked him, coming to a stop in front of the chair he was sitting in, “None.” He plopped the bag with the turkey in it on his lap, “I’m cooking.”

Sam raised an eyebrow as the turkey landed on him with a dull thud,You’re gonna cook?”

“Yeah!” Dean beamed at him before continuing toward the kitchen, the giant on his heels, “Why does that surprise you?”

“Well…” Sam set the turkey down on the counter, shifting his weight from one foot to the other, “You’re not exactly known for your cooking skills, Dean.”

“Pfft, so?” The blonde began putting the vegetables in the fridge, “You think just because I don’t do it often means I can’t?”

“No, of course not.” Sam slid himself down on one of the stools at the counter, “But I’ve seen you burn cereal, so…”


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Top 10 WORST Things About Telling People You’re a Writer

  1. Everyone you know used to write in college. Seriously, even the people who didn’t go to college used to write in college.

 

  1. *snottily* “Have you published anything?”

“Yes.”

*gets offended*

 

  1. “Oh, no, I meant what’s your real job?”

 

  1. “What do you write?”

*Tells them*

“Well I think you’d do better if you wrote ____”

 

  1. (After telling them your story plot/idea) “Oh, so it’s like (insert overly popular movie full of clichés)?”

 

  1. “Writing’s a good hobby, but when are you going to get a real job?”

 

  1. “I’ll totally read your book when it comes out!”

 

  1. “What do you mean I don’t get a free copy? But I’m your (insert personal relationship label)!”

 

  1. “That must be so nice! I’d love to sit around and daydream all day instead of going to work.”

 

    1. “Can you write me something (for free)?”

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The 100th

In order to celebrate the AMAZING milestone of reaching 100 stories, I decided to turn The 100th story into a CYOA (Create Your Own Adventure) gamebook!

For those who don’t know, a CYOA gamebook is basically just an interactive story. You’ll be reading along like usual, and then come to a point where you can choose between two options, and that will drive the story in different directions.

It might sound slightly confusing at first, but I promise it’s actually not hard!

This Supernatural fanfic has 3 plot lines to choose from:

– Cas struggles with confessing his love to Dean (Destiel-ish, C2C)

– Request 25 (Anonymous [Tumblr] asked for: can you do a thing where the reader comes back drunk and curls up on Castiel’s lap?)

– A drunk night with Dean (Funny, C2C)

Each plot has multiple endings, so make your choices wisely!

The game is FREE to play, and you can check it out here!

I’d also like to say a HUGE thank-you to all my supporters for allowing me to live my dream of sharing my writing with the world. Without you, I wouldn’t be here. You guys mean the world to me, and I hope we can continue to grow on this journey together. <3


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Daiya’s Meatless Pepperoni Style Pizza Review

Pepperoni pizzas are considered to be pretty basic, but just because a product isn’t overly complicated or a mash of six different flavours doesn’t mean it shouldn’t get just as much attention as the more exotic products out there!

Sometimes, you just need a simple meal to fill you, and that’s what this pizza does best.

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I’ve only tried this pizza once – for some reason it’s really hard to find in Canada – and I ended up burning it a bit, so it was a bit more crunchy then I like, but even with that, it was pretty good!

The crust and cheese tasted the same as their other frozen pizzas. The pepperoni was more interesting. Now, the only other vegan pepperoni I’ve tried is Yves and the one that PizzaPizza uses (though they might use Yves, I can’t remember right now), and I don’t really remember what meat pepperoni tastes like, but I liked this one. It was actually pretty spicy, which I wasn’t expecting. It was about the same amount of spicy as the Beyond Meat Spicy Sausages. Which might not be that much for some of you, but for me it’s a lot.

Because they were spicy, they reminded me of what Hot Rods used to taste like. I don’t know how popular those are outside of Canada, but that’s pretty much what they tasted like. They were also pretty big in size, bigger than the pepperoni PizzaPizza uses, (I bought a pizza specifically to compare their sizes). Aside from the spicy aspect, they also had quite a strong smokey flavour.

AterImber.com - The Veg Life - Product Reviews - Daiya's Meatless Pepperoni Style Pizza Review - Hot Rods - vegan, vegan food, vegan pizza, frozen pizza, food review, food reviewer, blogger, food blogger

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I obviously would’ve liked them better if they weren’t spicy, and just smokey, but the smoke flavour did a good job of sort of ‘washing’ your mouth out when you swallowed so it didn’t feel like your throat was on fire.

This pizza is also the same price as the others (usually $10.99), which you could maybe argue for it being less because there’s only one thing on it. Other than that, there’s not really much to tell. It’s pretty basic, but it’s good.


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The Front Line (Preview)

This is the last Unlearning Series installment that will be posted this year. The fics from now until the end of the year will all be holiday themed. But don’t worry! We’ll pick things back up with Fic #7 on Jan. 14th, 2022.

This is fic #6 of the Unlearning Series.

Written: 21.05.26

Words: 4,086

Sabriel, Destiel (Implied), C2C


“So, Big Bro’s missing?”

“Apparently.”

Gabriel nodded, jumping up to sit on the bed, “How long?”

“Since the wedding.”

Gabriel let out a whistle, “Damn.”

“Yeah,” Sam grabbed a fresh pair of clothes from the closet, beginning to pull himself into a pair of pants, “I know we had big plans for today, but-” he cut himself off as he tripped over one of the legs and fell to the floor, damn it.

Gabriel shook his head, “Don’t worry about it.” He snapped his fingers, eyes roaming over a now-fully-dressed hunter, “Just make sure you come back when you’re done.”

Sam snorted and got back on his feet, walking over to the bed to zip the duffle closed, “You’re gonna stay here?”

Gabriel shrugged, flopping back on the bed, “Well it is already paid for…” He shot a pointed look back to the hunter, “It’d be a shame if it went to waste.”

The giant rolled his eyes, “Sure.” He shoved his cell phone into his pocket, looking around the room, face growing serious, “Alright, I think that’s everything.”

“Good.” Gabriel sat back up, getting up on his knees so he was more-or-less eye height with the hunter. He wrapped his arms around his neck, pulling him in for a kiss, “I love you.”

“I love you, too.” Sam pressed a kiss to his forehead before backing up a few steps, swinging the duffle up onto his shoulder, “I just wish I knew where to start looking.” He ran his free hand through his hair, “He could be anywhere.”

“Hmm…” Gabriel closed his eyes for a moment, holding his arms out to his sides, before opening them, “Got it.”

Sam raised an eyebrow, “You found him? That quickly?”

“Well, no, not him. You guys still have that Enochian on your ribs. But I did find the car.” He popped a lollipop into his mouth, giving the hunter a victorious look, “And I think we both know if you find the car, you find Dean Winchester.”

Sam shook his head in amazement, placing another kiss to his head, “I knew I married you for a reason.”

“And here I thought it was because of my awesome bedroom skills.”

“Yeah, well, just because you can finish the marathon doesn’t mean you came in first.” Sam couldn’t help the smile that crept up his face at the offended look on his angel’s face. “So are you gonna tell me where the car is, or do you just expect me to guess?”

“Neither.”

“Neither?” Sam raised an eyebrow, letting out a sigh, “Gabe, come on. I know he’s not your biggest fan, but-”

“Ah-ah.” Gabriel held up a hand, cutting the hunter off. “Be careful.”

“Of course I’ll-” Sam cut himself off as he felt his feet leave the ground, what the…? He staggered backward a few steps as he landed on the ground with a thud. He looked around, and saw he was now standing outside a factory, Impala parked a few feet away. Sam shook his head and started toward the car, thanks Gabriel.


Liking the story? See how it ends here!

Making a GIF (PHSH Effect #16)

Don’t be scared! Making a GIF is not nearly as complicated as you may think!

Well, okay, that’s not technically true. It can actually get complicated, but that’s completely dependant on what you want to GIF. Don’t worry though, because this is just a tutorial, I’ll be keeping things simple, and you can always practice and work your way up to complicated later.

In the interest in keeping things simple, I’ll just show you how to make the GIF I teased in the last tutorial.

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Also, real quick, ‘GIF’ stands for Graphics Interchange Format. So, the proper pronunciation is to say it with a hard ‘g’ sound, not with a ‘j’ sound. Now that you know what it stands for, I hope you will start saying it correctly, because now you don’t have an excuse. (Unless you say ‘jraphics’, but I’m gonna go ahead and assume you don’t)

Okay, now that that’s out of the way, let’s get started!

Step 1.

First things first, set up a new document/work file in Photoshop, and make it whatever dimensions you want. Then, using the Type tool, type some words for us to GIF, and make sure you type them all on different layers. Since I’m showing you the GIF I teased last time, I typed out This is a GIF on 4 separate layers. But it can be any text you want. (Or it can even be a picture, but we’ll get to that later)

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Step 2.

Next, go up to Window (in the top menu with File) and click on Timeline from the drop-down menu.

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Once you click on that, you should see a banner come up on the bottom of the window, this is called the Timeline. There should be 1 ‘frame’ with your layers already in it that popped up as well.

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Step 3.

Now that you have the Timeline open, you have to place each layer onto different frames. This is actually much simpler than it may sound. First step, is to take them off the first frame. To do this, simply go over to your Layers Panel, and hide the layers you don’t want visible in the first frame. (Click on the eye beside the layer to hide it)

The only thing visible in the first frame should be the word This.

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Step 4.

Now we have to make more frames. To do this, click on the Duplicate Frame button in the timeline. It is the button that looks like the New Layers button.

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To make this the 2nd frame, we are going to hide the This layer, and un-hide the is layer. You do this in the exact way you did to hide all the layers, but the hidden layer won’t have an eye next it. That’s okay, just click in the little square, and the eye and layer will appear, making the layer un-hidden.

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AterImber.com - Writing - Writing Tips - Photoshop Tutorial Series - Making a GIF - Step 4B - photoshop, photoshop tutorial, PHSH tutorial, writing tips, indie authors, book help, book cover tips, photo manip, GIF

Continue to duplicate, and hide/un-hide layers until you have 1 frame for each layer. If you get confused, look at the frames – you should be able to see in the frame preview that there is only 1 word in each frame.

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AterImber.com - Writing - Writing Tips - Photoshop Tutorial Series - Making a GIF - Step 4D - photoshop, photoshop tutorial, PHSH tutorial, writing tips, indie authors, book help, book cover tips, photo manip, GIF

Step 5.

Now that we have all the frames correct, we can check how the GIF looks. To do this, click on the 1st frame (to start the GIF from the beginning), and then click the Play button in the Timeline. Your frames should then ‘play’, and you can see if you need to fix/change anything.

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Step 6.

If you think your GIF is moving too slowly (or too fast), you can change the speed by clicking on the arrow that’s under the frame, next to the time, and then select the time you think will work best for you. Keep playing with it until you find a speed you need, and to check the speed, just Play the frames again until it looks right for your needs. (For the most part, I’ve found the default of 0.5 seconds to be sufficient)

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Now that you’ve got the timing right, you may want to change the Loop type as well, so that it continuously plays, instead of just playing once. In the Timeframe box, under the frames, there should be a Loop dropdown. Click on the drop-down menu, and select Forever from the list. This will make your GIF play in a continuous loop, well… forever. (If the default is already Forever, you can ignore this step)

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Step 7.

Now that you’ve completed your GIF, it’s time to save. But wait!

You can not save a GIF in the same way you’ve been doing (Flattening then saving as a PNG/JPEG). Well, okay, actually you can save it like that, but then it won’t play.

If you want to save the GIF to actually play, you’ll have to go up to File, then find Save For Web in the drop-down.

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In the dialogue box that comes up, make sure GIF is selected as the format, and leave everything else the default.

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Then, click the Save button on the bottom of the box, and then from there you can give the file a name and save it to wherever you need to, like any other file.

And there you have it! You now know how to make a GIF! I told you it wasn’t that hard. And the cool thing is the steps are exactly the same no matter what you’re doing.

So, say you want to make a picture move. Let’s say you want to make a rocket ship take off.

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The steps are exactly the same, except instead of using text, we’re moving a picture. And, it takes more frames. Also, because it’s just one picture (minus the booster flames), all I’m doing is moving the picture slightly between frames, so it appears to be flying.

Here’s what the PHSH work file looks like:

AterImber.com - Writing - Writing Tips - Photoshop Tutorial Series - Making a GIF - Rocket Ship PHSH File - photoshop, photoshop tutorial, PHSH tutorial, writing tips, indie authors, book help, book cover tips, photo manip, GIF

Each time I moved the rocket, I placed a Guideline where the nose was, so I’d know how much to move it in the next frame. You can see here that I also changed the play speed twice. In the first few frames, it’s set at 0.2 seconds, and then after the ‘booster’ (flames) comes out the bottom, I changed it to 0.1 second, so it appears like the rocket sped up.

Go ahead and play with this technique – it is one of the more fun ones. You guys have until October to keep yourselves busy with GIF making, after which, I’ll be showing you how to create:

AterImber.com - Writing - Writing Tips - PHSH Tutorial Series - Shattered Text - Shattered Text Effect Done - phsh, phsh tutorial, photoshop, photoshop tutorial, phsh effect


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Time to Change (Preview)

Written: 21.06.02

Words: 449

Sabriel (Implied)


“What’s the matter?” Sam skidded to a stop in the bedroom doorway, worried eyes scanning the room for his boyfriend.

He spotted him, lying on top of the bed, head dangling over the edge, “It’s too hot!”

The giant deflated in relief, “That’s it?” He shook his head and made his way into the room, sitting next to the ex-angel, “The way you were screaming, I thought you might’ve gotten stuck in the window.” Again.

“No,” Gabriel let out a dramatic sigh as he wiped sweat off his forehead, “How are you not melting?”

Sam shrugged, doing his best to keep the smile off his face, “My body has had time to adjust to temperature changes?”

Gabriel shook his head, “Being human sucks.


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