Skip to main content


Showing posts from January, 2008

Writing is Like Being That Ginormous Life Making Machine Doohickey in the 5th Element

Lately my fiction writing has come to a grinding standstill. Sprawling satirical space operas that attempt to say something about the drug industry (both legal and none) is apparently kind of tricky. I've taken refuge in reading books ( Story by Robert McKee and Writing the Breakout Novel by Donald Maass) about fiction and story. These deal with down to the bones ideas on craft and artistry and how best to go about constructing your work. There is a lot to learn, and so much I don't know. But the beginning writer, such as my self, is always in conflict with two urges: one, to write it, get it down, work as fast as you can and maybe the dreaded Writer's Block won't catch you; and two, dear lord PAY attention to fundamental principles of story design and structure! It's not unlike being that Ginormous Life Making Machine Doohickey in the 5th Element. You know the machine that rebuilds Milla WhatsherfacesomethingthatsoundsRussian? There it is, furiously working, tryi

Email : Server, down.

So our network server's hard-disk filled up, and when that happens, the entire office gets a repeating network message, which gets somewhat irritating. This is what I sent to the entire office, yes, I'm a prima donna. Yes, I have undue faith in my job security. Once upon a morning dreary, while I programmed, alert, yet weary, Over many a hard and contorted lines of forgotten lore, While I focussed, near exhaustion, suddenly there came a popup, As someone gently messaging, messaging on my windows core, "Tis some friend, " I muttered, "IMing at my Window's door- Only this, and nothing more." Ah, distinctly I rememebr it was in the bleak of winter, And each separate bugging message wrought upon my Window core, Eagerly I wished the stopping, vainly I had sought Stop Popping! From the IT staff of five, stop the buzzing of the hive - For the sought and beautiful silence which is popups no more - Unheeded here for evermore. And the sad unbidden message of the d

Email : I've never rambled, ever.

I've posted a few emails that I've written that I though weren't half bad, this is one of them to a person in my writing group, concerning my rambling style. I have never rambled in my entire life! Now, maybe like an itinerant and slightly loghorheatic vacuum salesman with a poor grasp of English, I've felt a need to extrapolate and finely craft the inner and outer details of a subject. I may have, on occasion, used points and counterpoints on my prose like so much bling on hard-hitting gangsta rapper (originally from Vermont). There may have been pinpoint of weakness in the timeline of my writing, in which a short snappy sentence might have created a world of it's own, an interior life replete with absinthe fueled imaginings of how if only it could be discovered it would move to Paris and finally finish that post-avant-garde pre-anti-post-modern epic poem in Swahili. I admit, that how fleetingly, a sentence may have added compounding to it's own compounds, unti


News is suppposed to keep one informed about the world. Besides giving us details on the latest arbitrary tragedy, lascivious details on the most recent car crash, or how fast the last police chase was, I mean. Ideally, in an ideal world, the news should be informing us. We would put off, I think, if we turned on the 6 o'clock update to hear them speaking latin backwards through a trumpet mute. That's why I'm always amazed when they just throw out a figure, and assume that everyone knows what the hell it means. For example : "Crude oil production is down 3 million barrels this quarter." What the hell does that mean?Is that a large percentage? Historically, does this happen often? What's the percentage change, even, would be nice. If you told me crude oil production was down 10% last quarter, even me, a OPEC ignoramus, would have a rough idea on what this means. But now, they just throw it out there, and hope that the five people in the audience who even havve

Cocaine in the Water Cooler

I don't know what it is about certain service workers. Whether it's the deli woman who's far too enthusiastic to take your order of turkey on rye or the Mastercard phone rep who seems to be doing speed as he's talking to you, they are veritable beacons of over-cheer in a land of Just Trying To Get Through The Day With My Dignity Intact. They must put cocaine in the water cooler or something. Maybe their bonuses are based on serotonin levels? It's much worse when they interacts with you on a daily basis. That overly cheerful barista who must come from the land of Sunshine, Lollipops, and Electroshock Induced Happiness in order to maintain a level of blithe joy is a daily attack on my attempt to keep my head down and plough through the day. They must have watched, and taken to heart, every movie with Robin Williams where he keeps a child-like innocence about the world and admonishes the stuffy authoritarian figures 'that if they just let their inner child laugh a

People You Meet on Transit #3

The hipster. This is the guy (I have yet to recognize the gal variety) listening to the newest iPod as conspicuously as possible, with fashionably tousled hair, a rakish grin and a scarf that costs more than my coat. They are like a Gap commercial come to life, if Gap's name-brand cheerfulness and ability to swing dance at will was replaced with a sardonic mind that framed all the world in either post-Chomskian analysis or as fodder for their next avant-garde three act interpretive shadow puppet dance featuring the vocal stylings of the only ethnic person they know. It must be tricky being a hipster, since by default everything they say or think has to be sarcastic. Now, at some point, that has to get cliche,so does one layer sarcasm on top of sarcasm? Does sarcasm work like negative numbers, where two negatives multiplied together creates a positive? Are optimists merely pessimists who have gone too far? Or does sarcasm work like watercolours? Where if you layer enough sarcasm tog