Hello, everyone. I want to say this about being a homeowner.
Here’s why: my furnace is acting up. It will run for a while and then stop – not when the temperature is right, but when it darn well wants to do so. At first, I could jiggle a wire and the filter and it would kick back on. No problem, I could keep this up for a few months and then have it looked at in the spring or summer. No big deal. It cut out last night, so I did the jiggle-tug and put the cover back up. The blower turned on and I waited for the comforting *fwoof* the gas igniting. There was no *fwoof*. Now, it’s not bone-chilling cold here in my neck of the woods (Heck, the day time temperature today is 41 degrees – not the worse I’ve had to endure, but still…), but I live in an area where during the winter daytime temperature can get to a balmy twenty degrees. Yep. You read that right. 20 in the daytime. So, I’d better get this furnace whipped into shape before winter. Not looking forward to it, since… again… strange people in the house. The cost isn’t getting to me, thankfully I have some savings, but the idea of people coming in here just unnerves me. I’ve gone into detail about this before, so I am just going to say this: not one of my better days thus far, but I am still on vacation, so it’s a little better.
Tomorrow begins Nanowrimo. I am going to throw myself into it completely and hopefully come out with a finished novel and a minimal lack of sleep. For those of you who might not have heard of it, you plop yourself down in front of a computer and write a novel (50K words) in 30 days. You can do that, but your social life will suffer somewhat. Well – yours might dear reader, not mine, I am an amateur recluse (I still have dreams of competing in the Olympics in men’s single recluse. I wanted to try men’s team recluse, but I didn’t make the first cut) so I have no issues with sitting in front of a computer for hours on end – I do it for a living and I hope to make more money off of it. If you’re interested, I always tell people to give it shot. It’s only one month and it costs nothing to join the site. Give it a shot. Who knows? There might be a writer in you.
I/O Error is stumbling a little bit. I want to get to the good stuff, but I need to stick to the plan and get the set-up finished. The last novel, I would skip around and do all the ice cream scenes and write stuff to stitch it together. I didn’t like doing that because when I read it back, it could tell that the scenes were there to carry me on to the next neat scene. Of course, I knew what the scene was for, so I might not have been completely subjective. Well, we’ll see what the editor will say about it. Hopefully, all will be well and I get it to market before too long.
Well, I should go and get to work. Hope everyone has a good day.
Hello all – I know I haven’t been keeping this blog on a regular basis, so with the vacation I have this week and part of next, I am looking to get back into the habit. So… what’s new you ask? Well, let me start with a couple of birthday pictures:
The funny thing about ice cream cake – it does limit how many candles you can use.
I got a couple of gifts: the two best sci-fi
movies around and a gift card to Starbucks. I also got some birthday love from Amazon: Empowered: vol 7 (get it), Babylon Confidential by Claudia Christian and The Walking Dead, vol. 16 (get this series!). I also got myself a little gift – the Kindle Fire, a wonderful little device to entertain myself. I have that and a Nook Color; the Nook is for writing and the Kindle is strictly entertainment… no, really. Lest you think I just sat around all day and played Borderlands 2 all day (only three hours, thank you very much), I actually did something useful – something that I have needed to do for a long while.
There’s a desk under there? I’m just as shocked as you are.
So – yeah, I did something good on my birthday. Didn’t do any writing, but then again – it was my birthday. Today, it’s going to be back to work with I/O Error and hopefully get it finished before the beginning of the year. Getting the first novel finished and off to an editor has given me a great boost of confidence. With this week and a half off, I should get a lot of headway into the book. I am also looking to start a more public blog for a website to sell my books. Once I have three novels together and out there, I will (hopefully) be able to go out to conventions and sell, or at least get my name out there. I have a good feeling that 2013 will finally be my year. Feelings are all well and good, but this needs to be buttressed by action. Which means I need to get to the grocery store, see if they finally have that good white chili and some chicken to go with the rice I might cook. Yeah – I’m going to be lazy about this. While I don’t mind doing dishes… if I don’t have to do them, then I am not going to do them.
On the TV front – Burn Notice is coming back and I am happy. That show is one of the consistently best ones out there. That and Warehouse 13 are the TV shows I enjoy. I’ve watched the first episode of American Horror Story: Asylum and I am going to give it another two or three episodes. Well, I should hop off to the store and get my stuff together for dinner. I hope everyone has a good day and a better week.
The novel is finished and off to the editor! Yes, there have been some delays – but all that matters are that it’s done and I can move on to the next novel. Finally. I can switch gears to horror. In my head I am still dithering over some things, but I’ll get them worked out by the time I get to them in the book. The next step (once the novel is edited and ready for release into the cold, cruel world) is to get a website set up so I can sell it. Of course, I am hampered by one tiny thing: I have no idea what to do next. So the next few weeks in between writing about the heliopause and dealing with Evil.
On the other hand – Evil does get shot in the face a lot in this game.
On other fronts, I’m working a 3 day work week and a full week, and then I’m off for a week and a half for my birthday and the Halo 4 release. Oh – there is a webseries on YouTube that you should give your attention to, (especially if you’re a Halo fan… but if you are, then you might already know about this) it is call “Forward Unto Dawn“. Why can’t we have things like this on broadcast TV? Yes – I am a fan of this, but there is more to this particular grief than not being able to see Master Chief on the big screen. It seems like all the talent has fled from there to cable and from cable to the Internet. I’m not saying there’s nothing to watch on broadcast, but there is just painfully little to watch. I was primed for “Revolution”, but I wasn’t wowed after two episodes. I watched an episode of “Last Resort” – the jury is still out on that. Most of the stuff that I watch is documentaries, movies and very old programs (NCIS is in its 10th season!). I’ve got my eye on the Kindle Fire as a test to see if Hulu Plus and Netflix might be a better alternative to TV – as a lot of friends have told me.
Well, this edition is going to be a little short – there are more electrical problems at the house and I need to get a electrician this time. Huzzah for being a house owner.
Now, I like post-apocalyptic fiction, especially in movies – I’m not limiting myself to just zombie movies. I loved the Mad Max movies and I loved the novel The Road (yeah, it’s depressing as anything, but it’s well written), so when I heard about ‘Revolution’, I was thrilled. When I saw that ‘Gus’ from ‘Breaking Bad’ was going to be in it, I was ecstatic. I watched the first episode and I felt that it was OK – left some questions to be answered, but that is the job of the pilot episode. Now some people have asked some questions about the world and how some things operate – I am one of them and I had a few questions that I would like to see answered by some post-apocalyptic series or movie:
- Where the hell are the bikes? The skateboards? Mopeds? (Lord knows we have enough of those things buzzing around here) I know the central premise of the story is that electricity no longer works, but what about gears? Seriously – road bikes are very efficient for travelling long distances and mountain bikes are still very hardy. Bicycles themselves require little in the way of maintenance. Screw raiding the gun shops and grocery stores – I’m hitting the Schwinn Shop to get a couple of road bikes, a mountain bike, some helmets and patch kits (no, I am not getting those lycra bike shorts until I’ve lost weight – the world has ended… hasn’t it suffered enough?).
This is the big one: Main character has a flashback to when she was a child. Her parents (one of them being a scientist that predicted this event and had a back-up plan) were at the university when the girl playing with a ball (the main character) had it bounce away from her (the dad was inside getting something, so it was just her, her little brother and their mother) and a guy picked it up. Naturally, he was giving off the creepy vibe and took her hostage, asking in an even tone for the food they had. The father comes out, sees that his daughter is captive and raises his pistol to the man’s head. The man calls his bluff and gives away the food. We cut away to him rolling along with the wagon of food:
Husband: You give that food back! I swear to God I’ll shoot!
Man: No, you won’t.
… and the guy was right, because we hear a shot and the guy flops down dead. Camera cuts back to reveal the mother with the gun in her hand, the barrel smoking and her hand not shaking a whit.
Now here comes my unpopular gripe: really? Men can’t kill even in defense of their own children? You can say: “He was a professor, not really a gun person.” Why have the gun in the first place? I’m sorry, while the writer in me understands the need for this sort of thing to show that this guy isn’t going to be the stalwart, action hero type to set up his big death to kick off the series; the viewer in me just rolled his eyes and took it off of the record list on the DVR. I am not saying that women can’t kill. I’m not saying that women in television need to go back to playing weaker stereotypes, but the idea of a man not being capable of violence, while the woman is a steely-eyed machine of death (especially when it’s not set up that way in the pilot) is becoming horribly clichéd.
The three people that know me and read this blog know that I am a fairly happy-go-lucky sort of guy. I am perfectly willing to go along to get along at times. However, if this scenario happened as listed above – there would be changes:
- My wife, son and daughter would stay with me at all times – or at least within earshot. If my daughter whines about it (and she wouldn’t because by now she knows better, but the stress of the times gets to the best of us), I would tell her: “Sweetie, things have changed. There are people out there now who are going to try to do things they were afraid to do before for fear of getting caught. I need you to stay with me so I can keep you safe. You need to stay with your brother to keep him safe. OK? My biggest job right now is looking after everyone here and I need you to help by staying with me.”
Let’s say, for the sake of argument, I am separated from my wife and child, with me having the only gun (why didn’t the husband give her the gun in the first place? Why didn’t she have a gun for herself? This is why I’m not watching ‘Revolution’ – the writing is lazy.). I hear a disturbance and come out to see my daughter hostage to a shady looking character. Now, he thinks he’s going to say something like ‘gimmie your food and I’ll let her go’ or ‘that’s a nice daughter you have there…’. He’s not going to say much of anything, since the language center of the brain is now a pink mist exiting out the back of his head. It’s the end of the world, kids. It’s going to be anarchy. We are going to have to do what needs to be done to survive.
So – the reason why I am not watching ‘Revolution’ ultimately is lazy writing. Sorry – I wasn’t blown away by it. Better luck next time.
Some of you may be complaining that I am not following that ‘blog once a day’ rule I set up, to which I say ‘it’s my blog and I’ll do whatever I darn well want to do’ and follow it with ‘the word day is defined by the period in which I am conscious’, so it’s still today and this will be the blog for today.
Anyways – the title refers to this quote from the great Greta Garbo. I work in a call center, which are 8 ½ hours of non-stop noise and none of it is desirable – if it’s not the beeping of the phone, it’s the people on the other end of the phone making demands and somehow thinking that by saying ‘I’ll just take my business elsewhere‘ will somehow give me reign to alter the laws of probability (quick answer… no. Long answer… hell no and I don’t care if you leave – caring is not my department). When I go in the break room, the TV is on CNN and that offers no real relief. I might have to start taking my lunch outside now that the weather is cooling down. One would think that I would unwind at home, but I still feel stressed there as well – I come in and it’s more noise and chatter around me. The only time I feel any sort of relaxation is on the way to and from work, when it’s just me in the car. I just turn on my CD player and I listen to some of my favorite tracks alone. Isn’t it sad that out of the 16-18 hours I am conscious, I only feel relaxed for about an hour? The more I am here (in an existential sense) the more I feel everything closing in around me. I try to get as much out of it as I can. I don’t sleep that much on the weekends not because I am trying to pack so much living in only two days, I stay up so that I can have some more quiet time. Is this being greedy? Seriously, I’m asking this. It’s not like I hear voices in my head telling me that no one wants to see me and that I would be better off dead (they usually only say the last part… apparently they’re more outgoing than most other disembodied voices), but I feel stress when I am around people. That’s why I shop in the evening. That’s why when I do have to shop in the day, I wear headphones.
This is why I hope to make it. I would love to get to the point where I can afford some land in a less densely populated state (maybe Idaho – no one says nothing about them in the news. It’s like the wallflower state in the big U.S. dance) and build a house. I would still have everything connected – running water, power and a halfway decent Internet connection – and have a lot of open room. Maybe a couple of acres, not to farm or forest (heavily, maybe a few trees to shield the house from prying eyes) but just to have some all-important breathing room. A cabin with no TV, maybe just a small radio to listen to if I get tired of listening to music or just if I want to turn everything on and just take in the silence… and my tinnitus. I promise you, if you get an invite to visit, I won’t have my feet in Kleenex boxes – but I will not give you a guarantee about any jars of urine.
On that cheerful note, I am going to end this day and say good night.
Is it wrong to want to nail Jen Riddle? I hope not, because I don’t want to be right…
Seething With Apathy
… except it’s going to take a weed trimmer to get through my hair.
Sorry things have been a bit scattered over the past few days, but I had to pay for more storage on WordPress and find out that the problem might have been with my laptop. I’m glad I got the extra space, which should take me for at least another 300 or so entries for now. I’ve also been waking up later than usual because I’ve been going to bed later than usual…
A Tiny Hint as to why…
Now that everything has been squared away, I should be getting back on track as far as posting and writing in general. That being said, there isn’t a whole lot going on. I’m just patiently waiting for my first of two vacations and my birthday. Right now, I just feel out of sorts – which is why I am getting a new coffee pot and something I found called Death Wish Coffee. Maybe this will perk me up in the morning… or it will make my heart explode. Either way, I am going to be awake in the morning.
I am still doing some rough editing (adding chapters, changing dialogue, banging my head against a wall – you know, writer stuff) on the novel. This Saturday is going to be the last of the big push days. Get those two short chapters done and merged into the manuscript and make some important word changes, then send it off to the editor to let the hacking begin. You may not be able to tell this, but I am really excited about this happening – another space monkey moment in the works. Sorry – just fell asleep for a minute there. Yeah – getting new coffee pot and that coffee next week.
Well, I am going to get ready for work, so everyone have fun and I will speak at you later.
Well after midnight tonight, I can only write about my quivering anticipation about Master Chief. Today, before dinner, I am going to get the novel further along so that I can stand in line for three hours to get one of the most anticipated games this year. After I get the game, I am going to spend most of Tuesday playing it, being ever so happy to say “Yeah! In the face!”
What should I do in the meantime? Any suggestions? Anyone? Play more Borderlands, you say? OK.
Anyways, when I am done here, I’m off to finish one chapter re-write and do a second one – the main character should have a reputation as a runner-type of person, so she’s not going to get into any sort of combat in the beginning. That should be for later while she’s traveling with Anya and either one rubs off on the other (write your own jokes, I got a blog to take care of). When that’s done… well, I will need to re-write the chapter after that so everything stays in line. Not that this is a complaint – but I am so ready to get rid of this one and go to I/O Error to try my hand at horror and sci-fi. Who know? I might be good at it.
Oh – I also want to mention someone here who is starting her own blog (she’s also the editor I have mentioned – give her some love before her sanity is crippled by having to slog through my mess of a novel). Please feel free to drop by and give some support to her. She’s a great writer and deserves to be made far more prominent out there.
Now – and to football. My favorite team actually won a game against the Saints in a close game (for them) but I had to watch Luck smack around the opposing team. Seriously? I thought Cam Newton would help get some more games to the TV, but the only game that I know is going to be televised is this Thursday, which is going to be on the NFL Channel. You know the NFL Channel – the one my cable company dropped about a month ago. Thanks, guys. Really – thanks for dropping one channel, but letting TLC hang around and the History Channel continue to not show history… and not even the whacked out conspiracy history I used to make fun of often. I am seriously considering dropping them soon if there’s a faster IP out there.
Well – I need to get to the novel. Hope y’all have a good day. I know I’m a little short today, but I want to get everything out before dinner and midnight.
And another thing – this post won’t hit until later because I’m going to need to upgrade my blog account and I don’t have the funds for it right now. So – you’ll see this in a couple of weeks. Sorry.
Hello, everyone – by the time you read this, it will be about a week from now and there will be at least eight other entries waiting patiently for your attention (except for Monday – he’s a bit of a drama queen). WordPress gives all their users who decide to go the cheap route – starving their children, no doubt – three gigabytes of storage space. Well, Tuesday I hit that mark and I’m faced with two choices: delete some earlier entries (which I did) or buy more space. It’s not a bad price (10 Gigs at $20.00), it’s just… well… things are a little tight now. So, for now it’s just me talking to myself as it were.
So – there was this thing called Borderlands 2 which I played for about nineteen and a half hours. Seriously. A three hour nap and a break for Attack of the Show and X-Play (if the reports are true, they are not long for this world anyways) constituted my time away from the X-Box. What do I think of Borderlands 2? glorious!
A lot of sequels suffer from ‘been there, done that and got the trophy’. Borderlands 2 expanded on the world of Pandora with an art direction that is head and shoulders better than the previous one. Yes, I’ve played a lot of it in one sitting and I haven’t gotten that far in terms of the game’s story, but I can already tell there is more emphasis on the character’s back story than in the other one. The game play is similar (if it moves, shoot it) with the exception of something called badass points. In Borderlands, there were little tasks you could perform and get extra XP. With Borderlands 2, you get points upon completing a minor task to make minor upgrades to a character (like +1% to your character’s maximum HP), but the great thing about this is that those adjustments can carry over to the next character you play. So if you played Zer0 (like I did, but I changed his name to Ni1) and got a bunch of points for him (it?), then made a new character – those points are applied to the new character and he or she starts out a little better than if you played it originally. I think it’s a nice idea.
Do I have any writing news? Nope. Sorry to everyone, but yesterday was a day off in all respects. I am going to get back on the stick tonight and get back into it.
In other news, the movie Dredd hits the theatres Friday and I’m going to see it later next week. I am passingly familiar to the film – thanks, Anthrax! – and I am a fan of Karl Urban so this will be interesting. On the TV front, the new season of Person of Interest starts next Thursday. One of the few shows that I follow very closely and have not missed an episode during the original run. I highly recommend it.
Well, I need to get showered and ready to go back to work. *Sigh*.
(This is a test blog… you can read if interested) Well, remember when I said that there was going to be an explosion in people’s inboxes? Yeah… that didn’t happen. Apparently, the memory upgrade didn’t take on the network, or something like that. I might have to give their WordPress program a shot, which means that I have to download another program and learn it. Not a big deal, really – I just would like to get some answers as to why WordPress seemed to be more than happy to take my money, but not so happy to give me my space. It’s almost like my romantic life in reverse… of which I will say little else. It is October, after all – my favorite month.
The manuscript for Silence So Sharp is pretty much done and I have begun the editing process before my real editor gets her hands on it. I took out three chapters, regretted it and I am going to put back in one that gives up an idea as to Rhona’s particular background, but the brigands get to live another few days since I’m not having Rhona kill them and freak out. I am torn between either ignoring them completely or showing the reader how Rhona is able to survive on her own. So, I might have to re-write a couple of chapters, then send it to the editor. I am using Smart-Edit for word issues (apparently, everyone likes to nod – 91 times the word ‘nodded’ was used, but it’s 91 times out of 70,000 words – not too bad, or so I hope) and I might put the whole thing through the spell-check and the grammar editor in Word. After that, I will call it done and plunge into I/O Error. Hopefully, I can get that one done before the end of the year (It’s my Nanowrimo project) and purchase an editor and artist for that one.
As far as other things, right now I am knee deep in this wonderful book. I have to admit, I got the first one as a lark (I mean – white trash zombie? What’s not to like?) and got sucked in. Having a background similar to the main character, I quickly empathized with her situation (yes… I am a zombie, and I feel better for getting that off my chest) and the whole book is fast paced and well thought out. Loved it! The sequel does not disappoint at all. Hopefully there will be a third book. One of the best pieces of work I have read this year. I am also reading Goddess of the Market, a biography of Ayn Rand – it’s pretty good, a little draggy at times, but it certainly does show the influences that shaped her life and the influence she held over others.
Oh, and in keeping with tradition – when the first book hits Kindle, I need to get a tattoo. Any suggestions on the subject matter? Boots and a sword with a cloak hanging off the handle? An elven woman and a fencer dancing? I kinda like the second one.
Well – I gotta get ready for work. Have fun y’all.