Sunday, December 31, 2017
At this time in December, most people look back on their accomplishments and make resolutions for the next year
As a writer, 2017 was the first year I did not have a major publication. How did this happen?
In December 2016 I received a new assignment at my employment. That task was a lot of creation and documentation. I was just getting the place secure when in July I received another assignment. That, my current assignment, has blacked out my writing time as I grapple with sixteen hours days seven days a week.
Not that it's an excuse, but it robbed my writing time. Lesson learned: protect my writing time.
T'was not as though I did not write, I wrote in the moments that I could, in the arenas I am comfortable with, in the genres I tried. I just didn't "follow through" and spec enough to have a major publication.
2018 will need several major publications.
Happy New Year.
Sunday, December 24, 2017
Merry Christmas from Chesterfield Inlet, a place of few igloos.
No one chooses to be here, it's just a place where the soul goes.
SoCal is still close to the hurt, and those last few thousands miles, the cold, and the isolation, numb that which robs the soul.
Friday, December 8, 2017
Saturday, November 25, 2017
Two weeks after I wrote of my co-author, being The Cat in the Lap, he becomes the poster child for the local veterinary store.
I don't remember signing any photo release.
Maybe it's just a fan selfie of her and him.
Saturday, November 4, 2017
There are times when I struggle to accomplish things during the week
There are times when I struggle to accomplish things by years end.
And there are times when I recognize that I may never accomplish, or repair, what has been done in life.
This week is the first time in four months in a new position that I have had some semblance of a Saturday to myself. Not before time too. I completed (almost) all of my work by noon, cleaned, did chores, and this evening, started to write. No sooner had I started writing did my companion - Jacob the Cat, come and began critiquing my work. He would usually perch himself on the printer and look down on my work space. The printer is broken so he plopped in my lap.
A Cat in the Lap seems like almost a good title for an enjoyable read.
Much better than trying to rewrite history.
Saturday, October 7, 2017
I bought a car.
Not for my wife.
Not because I have a child.
Not because I have a family.
Not because I'm getting a divorce.
Not because I'm crippled by child support.
Not because I'm immigrating.
Not because I'm remarrying.
Not because my daughters need transport.
Not because another car died.
Not because I'm out of paying child support.
I bought a car.
This time, it was for me.
Saturday, September 23, 2017
Monday, September 11, 2017
Sixteen years ago today, the world stopped.
I know exactly where I was when I first heard of September 11. I know who I was talking to. I know what I did.
I know know what the effect of that day was upon me.
This morning, I set about my day heading for surgery when the names of the heroes of United Flight 93 were being run across the screen. People who had a glimpse of what had happened elsewhere, powerless to help them, but did their own thing.
For All Mankind.
And it struck me. My forefathers before me had their own pivotal moments in time. World War 1. Sir Robert Menzies "and as a result, Australia is also at war." Hiroshima and Nagasaki.
The wars of my forefathers, are now my wars. Children who are in school have no knowledge of how much September 11 changed everyone's way of life.
May they never have to tell their children of their own war.
Saturday, September 2, 2017
How far will you go to write?
- give up your country?
- take a chance on an untested ability?
- maintain a day job that can, on occasion, take your writing time away?
Since movng to the United States, I have never worked as hard as I have recently. It's not about just making a wage, it's not about saving for a rainy day, it's about volume.
The volume of work - do more with less for the same amount. How far can an employer go?
I have recently lost a lot of my writing time, not though neglect. not through disinterest...but through work. Forty days and night have been lost. I went forty days without writing.
Oh, the humanity.
How far will you to go write?
Sunday, August 6, 2017
There are a number of organizations for whom I write for.
There are a number of organizations for whom I entrust my writing to.
And there are two organizations where I am currently witting as a development point. For the past few months, I have been crafting science fiction, developing a first person story telling trait which has been, historically, a harsher genre to write in.
Now I am perplexed by a technical issue that has prevented me from uploading the story for the past three weeks, despite the story gaining viewer traction.
A Gateway error is preventing me from accessing the server in which the story resides.
The story is still being written, it's not in the public forum.
I need to write a resolution to a technical difficulty.
Saturday, July 15, 2017
Next week, I travel interstate for a conference which pertains to my "day job". While it is no secret about what I do - a quick search of Google will show that - there is very little writing about my work.
Conversely, twenty years ago, I was in an environment which now has numerous appearances in a variety of genres - self help, family, motivation and science fiction. How is that I was able to turn a career into profitable works?
I wrote about work.
The New York Times in 2014 wrote that "just being a novelist is a lot harder than it looks". Never has this been more apparent when people inevitable ask me what I do to support my writing. Again, it's no secret, but what I actually do - well, that needs to stay on the 'down low'.
This week I started working on a piece of speculative fiction and several thousand words in, I recognized that had I been sitting at a Starbucks writing, (as most writers seem to be identified as commencing there) any Tom, Dick or terrorist in the area would have been able to see "what I actually do".
Our Nations Security, is far more important, than anything that I might write in the imaginative world of the Saturn Sector.
Sunday, July 9, 2017
But for the stroke of a pen, there go I.
Vale, Constable Mark Goodwin.
It took twenty five years before I could write about him.
Sunday, June 25, 2017
Each week, I look at the bank page where my blog resides and try to decide what stains will grace it. Mostly, this blog alternates between the development of the writer within me, the injustices orchestrated against fathers, and occasionally, recent events in my personal life.
This week all three managed to combine into a "force majeure" event, a phrase normally associated with a contract where certain circumstances beyond their control make either party unable to fulfill their obligations.
Acts of God, natural disasters, civil war are the big three that most think of. Sometimes it can be the mental grind.
This week I had to take on the State of California and the Commonwealth of Australia as, once again, their errors which are compounded with automatic penalties, were once again identified as inaccurate. The State acknowledges that the error occurred, but claims it has no authority to correct it. At the same time, they report that they are legislated to act on a thirty (30) day response. The Commonwealth of Australia report that they have no recourse when payment is not made, but must continue to act until so resolved.
No one wants to take responsibility, but will proceed regardless rather than redress the error. Sounds like a poor parenting plan. And it is.
Having championed the cause, I have returned home to receive correspondence from my native country addressed to my daughter at her mother house. Apparently, her mother can receive payments for our daughter at that mailing address, but when a gift from me is sent to our daughter, it is marked "return to sender".
It was only in recent years that I found a name for the "force majeure" of my life. It's called Parental Alienation. And it's taught by the evil mothers to our children, learned from their mother.
Wickedness, repeats history. As done to the mother of our children, so is now done to our children.
Saturday, June 17, 2017
In the writing world, numerous success stories can be found of fans who have turned their writing into contemporary masterpieces. Author E.L. James like the Twilight series so much, they wrote the 50 Shades series. Last week I was reminiscing about a project that begin some twelve years ago that did not evolve, and I began reading about the "fan fiction" which drives a number of successful spin off series.
Star Wars and Star Trek are two of the most popular, allowing evening the novice writer to be able to compile a story based upon the loose collection of characters, in a world which has been established - but not yet fortified on it's boundaries.
Website FanFiction.Net chronicles a lot of speculative writing, and the pitfalls as well. Writers who have created characters, fleshed them out and developed stories, don't want to see their hard work copied, even plagiarized. But apparently they are comfortable with endless computer games based on their premises - have you ever counted how many Star Wars games there are?
About twelve years ago while with the computer game company, I attended the preview of a game that enthralled me so much, I wrote about it at a number of game sites. Fast forward, I have now started writing my own speculative fiction, using some of the Artificial Intelligence (AI) characters as background for my own story.
Speculative fiction is back in vogue.
Sunday, June 4, 2017
Saturday, May 20, 2017
If you're going to write,
...you should give up your love of sailing. There will be time for that later.
...you should give up some relationships. There will be time for that later.
...you should give up your country. There will be time for that later.
...but you should always remember your blogging password. There won't be time for that later.
Back to our regularly broadcast schedule.
Saturday, April 22, 2017
The demons that live inside of all writers, are the Demons which they write about.
Injustice. Infidelity. Loss.
Some pain is arguably viable - the ridges of skin from a burn.
Some pain is arguably invisible - the soul of parents with missing children.
Some fathers write about the loss of their children to foreign forces.
Others write of the loss of their predecessor.
One man's demons, is another chapter of the Major Project.
Sunday, April 16, 2017
Some writers have full time occupations until their income allows them to give it up. I received a check last week and based on it's value, it may be a while before I give up my
Stephen King worked in a laundromat writing in the morning before he went to work.
There is hope for me yet.
We write not for the money but fot the message.
But the money will make the message a lot more fluent in publication.
Saturday, March 18, 2017
The Major Project.
I will have a major book release by the time my life is over.
Not for the money.
Not so I can walk into a book store and see my name on the spine of a series of books.
Not so I can be on television of have a major motion picture based on the book.
But so my children will know just what their Father went through.
Tuesday, February 28, 2017
Today's the day the Teddy Bears have their picnic.
Feb 28. An iconic day in history.
A buddy of mine has a birthday.
A woman I once knew has a birthday - she once sent me a pager that she was ready to settle down. Apparently not.
On Ancestry.com, my grandparents were married today.
Twenty years ago my divorce was finalized.
Thank you, Tori Amos.
Wednesday, January 25, 2017
Got a bill today charging me for the fraudulent change of my account by a Verizon Wireless employee. Verizon Wireless charged me for a change they made without authorization.
Time to rectify their error - 22 hours and it's still not corrected.
Verizon Fraud Game - change your account, because it will take more of your time to correct than it does to just pay it,
Saturday, January 14, 2017
Day 10, and Verizon Wireless still can't get it's own Customer Service alibi straight.
The story so far. One telephone number has been nuisance calling my personal cell phone. I contact Verizon Wireless, they can't block it from their end - it has to be done through my on line account. Completed.
The nuisance calls keep coming.
Telephone Tech Support, they block the number - the calls keep coming.
Telephone a Tech Coach who claims the block is not present - despite hard evidence on my end. They go to block the telephone number from their end, and the number now "mysteriously" appears as a blocked number that they can't explain - but the calls keep coming.
Today I telephone Customer Service - who confirm that no block exists, but upon further review, report that the block is on all telephone numbers - except the phone receiving all the calls. I'm calling them out - incompetent, deceitful, and failure to provide the service requested.
"You haven't been inconvenienced in any way by the nuisance caller," the Customer Service agent claims.
Ten days, eight calls and eleven hours on the phone to Verizon, broken sleep, and the inability of a cell phone company to fulfill their service agreement apparently is not enough for Verizon Wireless to be considered an inconvenience for their customers.
Can you hear me now moving to @Sprint.
Sunday, January 8, 2017
There are entities, who believe that they are so far above reproach, that they do not have to supply the level of service that they bill for. The worst offenders are cell phone carriers, and Verizon Wireless heads that list.
I have been receiving nuisance calls from one telephone number. Incoming calls at 11:30pm at night, 4:30am in the morning, 6:10am on Sunday morning. Inconvenient times. I know my cell phone carrier has been charging for the past 12 years for a block application - I'll call customer service and ask them to activate it.
"I'm sorry, Verizon Wireless can't activate call blocking without changing your plan." (Which invokes a higher monthly cost.)
Verizon Wireless Customer Service is unable to commence a call blocking service that I have already been paying for, without charging me a higher rate? (Sounds like extortion.)
Customer Service reports that they cannot activate the service, but, I can use the on line web page to access my account and start the call blocking service.
Later that day, I access the on line web page, log into my account and block the incoming call across all cell phone lines.
Want to guess who calls me the next day at 9.55pm? My blocked caller. I call Verizon Wireless and sit on hold for an hour without an answer before calling it a night. The next morning, my nuisance caller is at at it again at 06:05am and I phone my cell phone carrier straight away.
"We can't explain why your block caller is able to get through - let me put your through to Technical Support Tier II."
"You don't have any blocked numbers," Tier II claims. I call them out and print out a copy of the on line account not only showing the blocked cell phone number, but the expiration date.
"Oh, well...we can't explain why your blocked caller is getting through."
Can you hear that?
Wednesday, January 4, 2017
January 5 is National Screenwriters Day.
And they will sit behind while the credits roll up, just so they know.