Wednesday, December 22, 2010

The Tale of the Christmas Tree Massacre

As expected, Kirk looked great in a tree

But who, I did ask, will represent TNG?

Picard is a safe bet, but seems to lack luster

Riker instead is the one to pass muster

The Riker ornament came, but its weight brought surprise

How could the uniform hide so much heft for his size?

I hung it carefully on a tree slightly weird

Believing it was a safe home for his beard

As Kirk looked on, Riker weighed down the fir

His weight pulling it down in a deafening blur

Broken glass covered the floor, with Riker to blame

My opinion of him will never be the same

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Christmas Donations- Want an Ebook?

If you read The Bloggess, pretty much the best blog ever, you may have seen her amazing Christmas donation thing going on. She committed to giving out Amazon gift certificates to people who simply said they needed them. That has blown up into a snowballing network of people who are donating gift cards to people who have asked for them on her blog. Today that has apparently snowballed into other blogs where people are doing Bloggess-inspired giveaways. My funds are pretty well allocated for the next few weeks, so I've been trying to figure out what to donate. It occurred to me this morning that I could donate emailed copies of my ebook about how to sell on eBay.

This isn't really as stupid as it sounds. I sell the ebook for about 10 bucks through my own website and I believe it costs a little more than that on Lulu. I've heard from many buyers that it has been quite helpful to them in starting an eBay business. It's also specifically written for people who have very little money up front to get their business going. If you want a copy, just contact me through here however you do that and I will email it to you. It may not be a gift that you can buy presents with, but it is something that can give you hope for creating a better new year. That hope may be just what you need to get through the holidays.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Cave Men, Writing Time, Asimov and Captain Kirk

I once read a short story by Asimov called "Writing Time" that I really found fascinating. I mean, most of his short stories were pretty thought provoking, but this one really struck a chord with me as a teenage wannabe writer. The gist is that there is a guy who is constantly waiting for cabs, waiting in line for elevators, walking home or to the store, etc. His dearest wish is to have more time to write. He happens to have a friend with a sort of genie, so his friend makes a wish that the guy will have plenty of writing time.

Suddenly, he never has to wait for anything. There are never lines, cabs follow him around in case he needs a ride, every appointment is on the first floor, doctors take him right away, etc. The result is that he can't write a word because during all of that waiting and drudgery he was doing the real work of writing in his mind. Without that time to stand around with nothing else to do, he had no ideas and stopped writing completely.

I think that dissecting that situation and looking at my own has taught me a lot more about what and how I write than sitting and staring at a computer has over the years. That's one reason that the excessive use of cell phones really gets to me. It's stealing your writing time. No more, no less.

Over the past few weeks, it's started occurring to me that we really don't have much more real time than cave men did. Now, I think about cave men a lot, and I mean a lot. I actually think about them more than I do about Captain Kirk, which is probably way too often for good mental health. I've started thinking that the time we spend on staying alive longer is waaaay more than we realize, and that if you take away all of that time, what you really have left is the time that cave men had because they didn't have very many strategies for that. Buying and taking supplements? No. Getting car checked out, strapping on seat belts, going for checkups, picking up prescriptions, getting the heater worked on, paying the insurance bill, etc., etc., etc. take up a lot of our time each day. If you don't believe it, for one day pay attention to everything you do to stay in good health and/or to live longer. If you subtracted all of that time from your life, you'd pretty much be left with the 25 or so years that cave men had. Cave men!

What is the moral here? I really don't have one. Sorry about that. Maybe only that time is a funny thing. Whether it's dealing with garbage collection/washing vegetable/insert other good habits or standing around thinking or wondering what Captain Kirk would do, your lifetime will be spent somehow. It's up to you whether you spend that time getting some decent writing done or simply dealing with life in an effort to get more time to write.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Christmas Gifts for Writers

This is the third year in a row that I've been making a Writer's Journey list of gifts for writers? Why? Because I'm avoiding work right now. No offense out there, but I didn't get a single thing from last year's list. Just saying. But, if there is a writer on your Christmas / Chanukah / Ramadan list and you don't know what to do, here's what they want:

Writers enjoy bacon. Why do you think they work from home? So they can eat more bacon! With a bacon wallet, they can take their beloved bacon with them even when circumstances force them to leave the house. Also good during those times are bacon-flavored mints.

What better gift for a writer during the holidays than a festive Captain Kirk nutcracker? He's got his communicator out to communicate just how much he'll be appreciated.

Fancy writers will want to get all dolled up for the holidays with a shiny new cocktail ring. It's the kind of thing you can wear with anything, to anything.

For that editor on your list, this is the perfect gift for making edits a little faster and easier.

If your writer is a Twilight fan and you understandably don't want to support the Twilight franchise, you can get that writer a wolf for the holidays. No, Amazon doesn't stock wolves. If only it were that easy, dear holiday buyer. If only.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

The Writer's Journey = LOSER

Now that NaNoWriMo has come to an end, you see how many people won and what an incredible job they did as far as word counts. Some reached 100,000+ words, and I know of one that ended with more than 150K words. Me? Not so much. I'm not even going to cop to my word count, but I will say that I am very proud of both the pages that I wrote. How many people can say that they are proud of every single one of their pages? Probably not many.

If you win NaNoWriMo, finishing with at least 50K words, you get to download the winner's badge and display it on your online stuff. Since I can't do it, I made my own stinking badge.

Ok, so I'm not great with badges either. Sue me. I was also invited to a local party for more than 600 local participants. Not attending. There is probably a bag of free money and a sammich for anyone who stayed motivated enough to finish, and I'll have to miss out. On the bright side, my book came out in Canada today for some reason, though it's listed as coming out next year in the U.S. I have no idea why. Judging by the placement numbers, several were sold today. So just to top off my loserness, it's now out of stock. Oh, and I sold it outright and don't make any royalties anyway. There's also that little gem. And, I just noticed that it's been a month since I've updated my blog. All in all, I'd say that no matter what you're doing right now, I am likely a bigger loser than you. You're welcome.