When your business card is too esoteric

Hello, readers! My former business card, which had many rave reviews, if by “rave reviews” you mean people going, “Huh. How about that.” Which I don’t, frankly:

cthulhu bc for fbThe reverse side was blank. As blank as my soul.

There are a couple of things you may notice about this card, brilliant though it is. The first is that it’s in black and white. The second is that it has this weird leaf-looking thing in the background. And third is the sketchy thing on the right, which looks like a pile of mashed potatoes, maybe, or it also could be a pelican with a weight problem.

Yeah … those were supposed to be impressive. The leaf thing is actually H.P. Lovecraft’s concept of the “Elder Sign,” a way powerful sigil of, like, WAY powerfulness. The pelican is in fact Lovecraft’s drawing of what he thought the statue of Cthulhu from “The Call of Cthulhu” was supposed to look like. I did an “emboss” filter on Photoshop, which is really cool if you don’t care about anyone looking at it having the slightest idea what it is.

What’s with the Lovecraft stuff, you might ask? Well, I love me some HPL, and since my writing is working in that direction and Ima go to various conferences like the H.P. Lovecraft Film Festival & CthulhuCon in Portland this April, I thought it would be cool to have a Lovecrafty bidniss card. And so it was … but it was lacking something, and not just color. Not only was it drab and mostly incomprehensible to 99% of people who looked at it, it also didn’t sing as much of my praises as the public deserves (ahem). So I came up with this:

bc for fb' copyEnough to give good churchgoing folk the vapors. And professional graphic designers an aneurism.

Color! Details about what I do! Weird symbols! Phrenology! Yes, this new design has it all: I kept my HPL Elder Sign, but that yellow star thingy there is August Derleth’s conception of the same thing. (Derleth was a member of the Lovecraft Circle and largely responsible for bringing HPL’s work to a wider audience.) Both are plenty spooky, yes?

The star one is what hipster Lovecraft fans might sniff at and say, “That’s not the real Elder Sign. Sniff, sniff!” So they can enjoy the original goodness of the larger sigil and let others get a kick out of the also hella scary-looking star E.S. (I added the mystic eyeball myself because, come on, MYSTIC EYEBALL.) It conveys the concept of me as a SPEAKER for hire, which I am in a variety of areas, from zombies to the undead and everything in between.

The yellow symbol that looks sort of like three question marks (or maybe two question marks and an exclamation point) is the fearsome Yellow Sign, one of the (to me) scariest and most suggestive sigils in weird literature. (Read the first four chapters of Robert W. Chambers’s The King In Yellow. It’s like a nightmare remembered in full clarity. Once you know to look for it, it’s everywhere in eldritch fiction.) Check out this shudder-inducing cover:

The_King_in_YellowIf you bring just one book to the asylum …

The Yellow Sign represents my abilities as a WRITER, since reading The King In Yellow leads directly to insanity and death. (Your results may vary.)

Anyway, on the new business card, the thing with the three legs sticking out of it is the symbol for The Book of Eibon, an ersatz tome alluded to by Clark Ashton Smith in his Lovecraft Mythos stories. (One of the great things about reading what writers do in the Lovecraft Circle sandbox is that everyone borrows from everyone else. Writers still do it almost a century later, and it rocks.) This introduces my work as a FICTION COACH, because — get this, I’ve been working on it — I help writers create books that didn’t formerly exist. Huh? HUH?!?

Phrenology, one of my favorite concepts in the history of quack science, is represented by the head with its supposed sectors labeled. This is meant to be an amusing reference to my work as a LECTURER, what people call a wandering professor-without-a-classroom instead of a RONIN, which would be ridiculous.

Also, I designed a reverse side of the card to contain different aspects of the Hoadesperience through the use of QR codes, surely the biggest time-saver since those spectacles that turn into sunglasses whenever they’re exposed to sunlight and then don’t change back for like 20 minutes inside, all of that time people looking at you and going, “Ugh, wearing sunglasses indoors. What a pretentious douchebag.” Check it:

bc qr for fb“Ugh, a business card with QR codes. What a pretentious douchebag.”

Note that I have my website of wonders, my Facebook page, and this here very blog as QR codes to simply be scanned by a portable device like an iPhone or things that wish they were iPhones and viola! Contenty goodness is all yours.

This is all to get ready for the spate of conventions I plan to go to this year to hawk my wares, make publishing contents, look at cool stuff that, should I buy it, would be the first thing shoved up my rectum as my wife heads out for her lawyer’s office, and generally have an awesomesaucy kind of time.

More to come soon! Onward!
Sean

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3 thoughts on “When your business card is too esoteric

  1. Ooooo, chaos magic! I was right about the weird. I should button it, before you create one of those puppies and direct it at me!!!
    Very enlightening post……..

  2. Publishing contents?
    Hmmm. You’re sending me to google, this time. Ronin, sigil, eldritch fiction, all stuff I probably (read: might possibly) need to know.
    Fiction coach. Ha ha ha ha ha! You made that up! I like it! Really fleshes out the Hoadesperience!
    Nice colors, if you’re into weird, which… Yup, nice colors. I shall now repair to my search engine for a good browse.

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