30 June 2007

Unintentional Eavesdropping

Nope. I was in Indianapolis six months. No one paid me a dime.

(repeat x3)
No, not a song lyric. Just the ramblings of a probable itinerant (judging solely by appearance, I admit) sitting one comfy chair over in the café I'm sitting in. I didn't see a Bluetooth earpiece. And if I had, I don't think I'd necessarily be less disturbed.


Short Review of "Those Who Seek Forgiveness" by Laurel K. Hamilton

25 June 2007

Nothing to See Here

Jaysus, I'd tell this person to give it up already, except that this person obviously didn't find what he or she was looking for. Maybe this can serve as a warning for the next lazy-ass cheating bastard: Read the damn story yourself, you goldbricker! As if your prof couldn't spot your plagarizing a mile away.

23 June 2007

Good Reads

I know what I've said about commenting on short stories. But I've read a couple of things worth talking about at certain places. All of these stories are worthy of comment, but alas--so many stories, so little time.


Short Review of "Popular Mechanics" by Raymond Carver

@RBJ Community Blog

Quick Review of "Preview" by Tara F.T. Sering

20 June 2007

Which MACGYVER Episode Was This?

Make Your Own Altoids Can Vibrator

Solo Action

I can relate to this.
"And maybe it’s our drive to be alone -- not all the time, certainly, but enough to read and dream and reset our mental energies in order to deal with People again -- that at least partly impels the drive to write. Reading and writing become the bridge crossing us from our carefully guarded alone-zone into the world, into the human condition itself. We contain multitudes, and those multitudes contain us."
The sad irony of course is that I'm in a cafe doing this, instead of in the home office with the door closed. I can't help it, I either need to be completely isolated or be surrounded by people who aren't entitled to one iota of my time and attention.

I'm not so sure the solitude has to do with my particular drive to write. My drive comes from the struggle to take ideas from my head, some that've been there for years, and spit them out in a form others might appreciate. I've been doing the spitting part for years, anyway--why not construct something from it?

17 June 2007

Tough Love

Today, I had my first story critiqued by the writers group I joined two weeks ago. "The one about the angel." God, it was exactly what I needed! A lot of the criticism mirrored some of the general feedback I'd get when I'd submit it: "Good prose/writing, nice concept, but..." They gave me a lot to think about, and one or two things I hadn't even considered.

Because of the length limits, I only brought in the first 2/3 of the story, picking a place that was somewhat of a cliffhanger. I figured that if I did my job right, they'd be interested in the end. Despite some of the problems they pointed out, most of the group--the ones present, despite Fathers Day--did want to know what happened next, which was pretty gratifying.

Childhood, Redux

"Utopia" has to be the best DOCTOR WHO episode of the new series, if for no other reason than it made me feel like I was twelve again, jaw dropped in awe of all the levels of awesome!

I'd always thought more of David Tennant's episodes were more good than bad, but there was something that didn't click the way Christopher Eccleston's run did. I think it has something to do with age. Not mine, but the actor's. To me, the image of the Doctor as this older, adult figure went hand-in-hand with his being a 900 year-old traveler in time and space. Whereas David Tennant is just over two years older than me. Not that his Doctor isn't all manner of awesome; it's just that some of the edge was taken off. Eccleston, on the other hand, has almost a decade on me. His Doctor, and his episodes, still held a bit of that larger-than-life gravitas for me. I enjoyed his run while fondly remembering the old childhood nostalgia.

But watching this last episode, I was right back there! Eleven or twelve years-old on a Saturday night with the lights out watching the only thing that PBS was good for (at the time, to me), getting my geek on.

16 June 2007

I Can Buy This

Pretty, Fizzy Paradise: For Want of a Hero...
But the thing is. Anti-heroes don't mean anything without a heroic presence to offset them. There needs to be a voice of conventional, approachable, relatable morality to make the counterbalance and contrast mean something. There needs to be a hero.
Again, thinking back to the one story anyone's bought so far (I won't link it, because it's depressing that I'm the only reason the link pops up on my Technorati watch list anymore) which features an anti-hero of sorts, there is another character who provides that conventional, approachable, relatable morality.

This is also the reason, I believe, that a current project I'm working on is flailing right now. The main character is an anti-hero surrounded by scum. And I'm running--actually, the main character is running--into this wall...
An anti-hero doesn't have to make the tough decisions, to choose their heart's desire over an innocent child's life, for example. Anti-heroes CAN'T make those tough decisions because once they're faced with them, they can't be anti-heroes anymore.
So, it's clear what needs to be done, but how? In any case...

"The one about the regenerating assassin..."*

Zokutou word meterZokutou word meter
4,160 / 5,000

*(This is a project title; I haven't even been able to think up a working title yet.)

10 June 2007

You Thought I Was Being Paranoid

...when I said: "I started to get worried though when I started noticing that the blog was coming up in search results for some of the more "classic" stories, Babel's "My First Goose," for instance. And these visitors would spend more than enough time to copy and paste, too."

Do your own damn homework! ;)

09 June 2007

Good Reads

Back in the day, I used to post a list on the other blog of the short stories I'd read in a week and say a few words about them. I started to get worried though when I started noticing that the blog was coming up in search results for some of the more "classic" stories, Babel's "My First Goose," for instance. And these visitors would spend more than enough time to copy and paste, too. I'm probably paranoid, and I can't actually say I've ever said anything of substance. Still, I'm sure there was at least one desparate individual out there, cramming to get a last minute extra-credit assignment done and tried to Google and doodle his way to an easy essay. Well, screw him/her.

I felt I read through a lot of stuff lately worth mentioning, so I figure there's nothing wrong with putting a list together of stuff you should check out if you have the chance:

Ebony and Ivory

03 June 2007

The Journey vs. the Destination

If you read some of my posts on the other blog, you'll be able to glean that I'm a big GTD and lifehack geek. One of the areas GTD encourages you to monitor and consider on some regular basis is a list of your goals and/or direction one or two years out. The stuff that comprises "Where do you want to be in area X, this time in the next year or two?"

I had three items on a sublist in this category, six months into 2007.
  • Get a domain name, which I did yesterday.
  • Plug into a networking/support group, which I can now cross off twice over as of today.
  • Membership in the SFWA - Well, two out of three ain't bad, especially when 1 & 2 are bound to help me do that within the next year or two.
Now my other sublist that has the item "20 pices in circulation by 12/31/07"? I'm really off track, but not horribly so. Twenty might have been unrealistic. Yet what I've accomplished so far puts me waaay ahead of where I was this time in 2006. The journey vs. the destination...I think I'm starting to get it now.

02 June 2007

In the 21st Century Now

I've referenced Warren's Burst Culture post before, which also jammed this firmly into my brain:
The hurdle to credible publishing on the web, now, is the nine dollars it costs to buy a domain name from GoDaddy, which can be mapped on to a free Tumblr or Blogger space.
Well, I shelled out a couple extra bucks to maintain one latex-thin prophylactic against those ready to spam my email and home address, because I just couldn't get the idea out of my head to go ahead and own...


Tomorrow, the world!

Of course, if you've just now clicked without reading ahead to this sentence, you've just discovered that it takes you right back here.


This is something from the private journal that I thought was worth mentioning here.

If you asked me as recently as a week ago how I felt about my progress as a writer in 2007, I would've said, "Piss poor." If you look at sheer numbers, I'm way behind. However, there's just no comparison between where I am right now and where I was this time last year. Not only that, but since last week, I've made quite a few strides in networking with area writers, not to mention some pretty serious cats via Teh Intarnets.

It's all about seed-sowing, which is what I'm doing right now and what I'm feeling pretty good with right now.

01 June 2007

Grumpy Old Villains

Written World: 50 Things I Love About Mainstream Superhero Comics
8) The core team of the JSA is essentially a bunch of cranky old men who probably get together with old supervillains to play poker.
This sort of fuels an expansion of this idea in my mind.

I wrote that story as part of my deconstruction of the supervillain archetype. But, I want to take it further. We all know the various and sundry reasons why any superhero keeps fighting the Neverending Battle. But why do villains keep going? Why keep get your ass handed to you on a regular basis? Why cope with the various life disruptions caused by jail time or faking one's own death?

Because they're EEE-VIL? That might be a plausible explanation if they won something really worthwhile on occassion. Being psycho might be a better explanation; certainly that's the one given to us by a lot of villains lately.

Gotta think more about this one...