Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Sick Day

Sick day today. Yesterday morning felt a cold coming on after a great weekend, and at two o'clock it hit me like a freight train hauling a ton of bricks. A generous friend at work drove me home (since I'd carpooled) so I could rest and not infect others. Am sneezing my brains out, leaking from my nose, and achy.

Another friend noted my increased output of recent stories and said I was starting to sound like Heinlein. From your lips to God's ear, my friend. Damn, that man could write! Books and short stories galore, and many of them superb.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

New Story and Changes

Sorry it's been a few days since posting, but this month got crazy, especially after school started for my daughters.

Last Monday, we got the news at work that a big company wants to acquire us. So now we've got to live with more uncertainty- will things change? Will my job still be available? Not things you like having to worry about. The recession is over only insomuch as you have a job- that's the cold hard reality.

Writing keeps my mind from worrying, even if for a short time. So I've been working hard today, and finished writing a new story: "Carnival of Pain." Had the original idea a very long time ago, and was never able to do anything with it. But the story gelled recently, and now it's done. Sent it off to its very first market as well. Fly, little one, find a home.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010


Was feeling a bit down, so was very happy to get in the mail my complimentary copy of the magazine "Ghostlight" with my poem "Dead Things" published in it.

The editor asked me to send you folks to the site to buy a copy. You should, as it's my first poem sale, and this issue could be worth some money when my writing goes out to a broader audience. Just saying...

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Not Everyone Can Write

It's sometimes said that everyone has a novel within them. This should be clarified to specify that everyone has their own story to tell, however, to turn that story into a novel takes a lot more. There's a lot of people who figure that when they retire, they'll finally crank out that novel that's been sitting inside them all those years.

Trouble is, if you haven't been writing all those years, the result is unlikely to be any good. So many people think writing is just something everyone can do. They're proficient in the language and can type, and they think that's about all that's needed.

The truth is it's no easier to do well than successful surgery. Yeah, most people can pick up a scapel, and even cut someone if they had to, but how many could take out a gall bladder without medical training? Doctors go through a lot of training and practice to do what they do, and so do writers. But it's a field where many think they'd be successful, if they just sat down and tried it for a little bit.

Well, it aint so. It takes time and a great deal of concentrated effort to be a good writer. And we're always learning. There is no perfect writer, and there never has been. There has never been the perfect novel. There are some short stories, however, that approach perfection.

Is there perfection in other fields? Is there a perfect musician, artist, banker? Are there some professions which lend themseleves to absolute mastery? We have Master Chefs...

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Backwards into the Future

Especially since the year 2000, the governemnt of the United States seems intent on dragging us backwards into the future. None of this is good, and it is all done in the name of getting even more control over us.

When the Cold War ended, we were unopposed as a global superpower, and it was a chance for a real peace, with a peace dividend. Without the need for such a military prescence, we could use the money wasted in nuclear proliferation to create a better country, and a better world. But the ones in charge invented a new boogeyman, and replaced Communist with Terrorist- even better, since it was less-defined, scarier, multinational, and irrational. Remember, fear is more effective if people are vague on what they're afraid of.

And so they reached into the evil old past and brought back the Crusades, and are waging an ever-escalating war on all things Islamic. Considering the hundreds of millions of Muslims across the world and the millions in this country, it would seem an insane and self-destructive course. It is. Keep attacking someone long enough and they'll respond in kind, or worse. Treat people with murderous hate, and they'll learn to hate you back. Our leaders slaughter innocent civilians by the thousands and ignore the blowback.

But that madness wasn't enough, and so they brought back the Inquisition. They now torture at will, to anyone they say opposes them. Innocent or not, doesn't really matter. That judge who just gave his sanction to the illegal kidnapping and torture (http://www.salon.com/news/opinion/glenn_greenwald/index.html) should get a lesson in "do unto others". Wonder how he'll spend his thirty pieces of silver.

They tossed out the Constitution and the Bill of Rights, and they're revoking human rights to pre-Magna Carta days. This is utter fascism and tyranny, and a violation of everything this country claims to stand for. Why don't we just rebrand ourselves "Communist Russia," since we now have as official State policy for every bad thing we ever said they were doing. Our government now rountinely does deeds that are war crimes, things that people were hung for after World War II.

Do unto others as you would have them do unto you. When you propose murder, kidnapping, and torture, don't be surprised and don't complain when it's done to you and your people.

And let us hope those evil bastards who participate in these crimes will someday be brought to account.

Monday, September 6, 2010

Labor Day

It's been a great Labor Day Weekend so far. Lots of time with my family, even though we were shy one yesterday, as my wife drove down to a friend's and helped her through a tough time.

Finally got to ride the Bruce Freeman Bike Trail in Chelmsford Saturday. Wow- what a gorgeous, well-maintained path. So convenient for biking or even walking. Perfect, shaded path, and even on a hot day it was fine. They've done a great thing in making this a communal space for exercise and enjoying natural beauty.

Then we tried kayaking, but the rental place was closed. Wah. So we played tennis instead, and had a fine time.

Buckled down the last two days and wrote out the complete draft of a new short story, Moose Tracks. Completed it last night, about 2300 words. Great satisfaction at completing some new piece of work.

Today is such a perfect Fall day, it's time to pick apples!

Then tomorrow, it's back to work for me, back to school for the girls, who are less than happy about the prospect. They enjoy their Summer leisure.

For me, it was all too short a Summer. Yeah, technically there's two plus weeks left, but Labor Day is a marker milestone. And the weather change certainly put an emphasis on the difference, giving us an early taste of Fall.

Saturday, September 4, 2010

More work needed

Haven't seen much activity in my story submissions during August. Possibly most editors were on vacation.

The worst offenders are those editors who've had my stories for months, indicated they were interested, and then never responded again, despite polite queries about the status. Have three of those. Would be nice to hear one way or the other.

So I need more stories out there, and have two more ideas for immediate stories that can be written. Time to get to work!