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Showing posts from July, 2020

July's End 2020

Song mood: The Power of Love by Huey Lewis and the News.  Just because.  The cool thing about Huey Lewis is that he never let the eighties change him.  He was still himself doing his music and he never really tried to change and do something that different.  He was just himself doing his thing.  The makers of Back to the Future saw this and had him do the album for the movie, or something like that.  Huey Lewis would have thrived easily in the sixties. On being the worst mechanic, today wasn’t my day.  The part, let’s call it the Crankshaft Position Sensor (CKP), came today.  Now two major things happened.  First, I stripped the bolt that holds the part in place.  Seriously, why did Ford need to make the bolt have a star head hole instead of being a standard hexagonal bolt is beyond me.  Really, it doesn’t need to be a special bolt.  Any I stripped it, so I am watching videos on how to take off a stripped bolt.  Second, I took out the replacement part to see if it would plug in and

30 July 2020

Song mood: Ordinary World by Duran Duran.  The song has been playing in my head, but I couldn’t quite figure out the title or who it was by until I googled a lyric.  I would mistake Duran Duran for the Thompson Twins.  There is something about eighties music that isn’t seen today, like everyone was trying to do something different in the most different way.  Duran Duran, if you watch this video anyway looked like a cross between electronic and hair bands.  Growing up, hair bands were my favorite, once I got past the sixties kick I was on (thank you, George McFly and Back to the Future ). Tomorrow, I get to play the part of the world’s worst mechanic.  At least the part was only $15.00.  I watched a couple videos and the fix looks simple enough. Plans for this weekend besides the usual. 1. Brainstorm for book 2 of the series.  Brainstorm for the mystery.  Think up of any other story that I might want to write. 2. Try to get outlines for four books but be okay with just one. 3.

28 July 2020

Song mood: In the Meantime by Spacehog.  If I think upon that song, maybe the cycle shifts and I am on a level playing field.  Whatever that means. I did some brainstorming last night for the next story.  I will have to do some more.  I have an idea of what I want to write for the second story.  I’m also thinking of starting off with a short story.  Of a battle between the Dark Prince and the Traveler.  Where the Traveler defeats the Dark Prince and in the process traps himself.  And in this set of ideas, I need to figure out how Milo will defeat the Dark Prince. I was thinking, and will probably do something like this: Milo makes ‘salt boxes,’ the things that the Dark Pince uses to regenerate himself with, that has 10% iron.  The iron prevents the new incarnation of the Dark Prince from being able to use magic.  Therefore he lives his life out as a normal person. I really don’t know why faeries don’t like iron, or why they can’t do magic when they come across iron.  Which is why

The Serpent and the Rainbow

I was in the mood for a good zombie movie and decided on The Serpent and the Rainbow , by Wes Craven.  Although I watched it for different reasons than I did when the movie came out on VHS.  Back in the day when there was Blockbuster videos.  One of my friends rented it out and a group of friends and I watched it in the wee hours of the morning. I thought of this movie when I read the short story Bitter Grounds by Neil Gaiman. The movie is based off of the book by scientist Wade Davis and his search for an anesthesia which we know as tetrodotoxin.  The movie starts out with a scientist talking with a Shaman and taking iowaska.  Which from what I’ve read, iowaska and shamanism don’t work that way.  But this is a movie.  The theme of the movie is shamanism vs voodoo. It was an excellent movie until the end.  Then it became a little cheesy because it was a horror film made in the eighties.  Still, I enjoyed it more than expected.

The Driving Force on Writing

The driving force behind my writing is to tell a story.  Or a series of stories.  To tell a story in a way that I can tell the story. One of the topics of conversation on the writer’s group meeting was how many books are published on Amazon.  A figure like 6,000 books was tossed around.  So I did some research.  The 6,000 to 7,500 books a day is on the first four days of the month.  Overall, it’s around 50,000 books a month, which is 1,668 books a day on average.  70 books an hour.  A little over a book a minute.  What no article will say is that they have book reviewers who will say that there was a typo on page 66 and so the reader should never ever read this book, ever.  Save your $0.99 or $2.99. The other thing that the article doesn’t say is how many of those ‘books’ are actually short stories or novellas.  Well of course I would say that a novella is a book. Anyway.  Those numbers are a bit staggering.  Unless you write romance and can market yourself, the chances of making

22 July 2020

Super tired at the moment.  Something about a dog constantly barking well into the night.  I still have to get up and do my work, no matter how tired I feel. So I am not as creative because I am tired. I did a zoom meeting with the writer’s group.  I didn’t really add anything to the conversation because I was tired.  But was good to talk with my friends from the writer’s group. I finished listening to The Only Good Indians by Stephan Graham Jones.  I liked it.  He did go back to the res.  It was different.  Even though the novel was mostly linear, it didn’t feel that way.  Which was interesting.  Native American stories, or the stories of old normally linear.  Some of the racism that they experienced, I have too.  Not that it matters.  The novel was written of a style more of a stream of conscious.  Which, normally I’m not a fan of.  But Jones makes it so easy, like it’s the easiest thing to do and it’s not.  So overall, I thought the novel was excellent.  Parts of it had a qua

my first and only read of The Deathly Hallows

When Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows came out, I lived in Korea.  There is a fourteen hour time difference between Seoul and Omaha.  I went to the book store on the day it was released, like when the book store opened and bought my copy.  I started to read it on the bus ride home.  When I got to my apartment, I read it that day plus the day after.  I was determined to be the first in my family to have finished the book.  I ordered take out from the restaurant on the first floor of my apartment building and snacked on stuff I already had.  The book came out on a Saturday, which is unusual because books are normally released on a Tuesday.  I had no contact with the rest of the world, well accept for when I skyped my mother on our weekly calls.  I read the 700+ page book in two days.  And that was all I did that weekend.  When I finished book, I couldn't actually see that well, like everything was a blur for the two days that followed.  It was the last time I read a large book w

Birthday Book 2020

I reserved my copy of Harrow the Ninth by Tamsyn Muir at the only Barnes-N-Noble in Omaha.  It will be released on 4 August.  I asked the book seller questions about when it will arrive just to make sure I can pick up the copy before my birthday.  I told him it will be my birthday book.  He asked me how old I will be and I told my age without enthusiasm.  Then we chit chatted about life and getting older. So I will receive an email when the store receives the books.  They will receive five copies and one of those is reserved under my name.  The book seller told me to come in when I get the email and they will be more than happy to pull it from the box for me.  I am happy. This book will break a few of my birthday book rules.  One, at five hundred pages it is much longer than the normal 150-200 page book.  Two, it is the middle book of a trilogy.  The birthday book is supposed a stand alone novella and preferably by someone I have never read before.  It is supposed to promote finding

16 July 2020

Song mood: Slide by Goo Goo Dolls. Wrote a thousand words today.  No biggie.  I finished up the fight scenes.  I added a four hundred word mini scene that will probably make no sense now.  But in the fifth book, Milo and the Chronomancer send trackers in the past.  So that Milo can find his way home.  So I will probably throw in another challenge to the labyrinth.  Once I’m finished writing the challenge, I’ll start the first read over to see what transition scenes need to be written and then edit. If I were going to name the book today, it might be In the Labyrinth of the Dark Pince or Within the Mindtrap of the Dark Prince .  I might even write a poem about the Dark Prince at the beginning. I finished listening to Queen Victoria today.  At the end there was a Q and A with Lucy Worsley, which I enjoyed.  I love listening to her and watching her shows on Public Television.  She was a curator at Kensington Palace, which fueled her passion to write the book.  I always believe tha

Rock Me Amadeus

I really enjoyed Hamilton when I saw it.  And I was watching it, I thought this could have easily been made in the eighties.  It reminded me of Falco’s Rock Me Amadeus .  And I also thought, it would be cool to see a musical for Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart.  They could use the theme of rivalry between him and Antonio Salieri as was done in the movie Amadeus that came out a year before the song Rock Me Amadeus . I thought the movie was cool when I saw it as a child.  But then it was probably the infectious laugh of Tom Hulce who played Mozart.  I’m not sure if I could watch the film these days, it’s three hours long.  Maybe if it were a mini series or as it is called these days a limited series.  Then I would be able to watch it. Anyway, I think it would be cool to have a musical done in the style like Hamilton for Mozart.  And use the song Rock Me Amadeus as the foundation of the musical.

15 July 2020

Song mood: Live to Rise by Soundgarden. So I’m at 24,500 words on the novella.  I thought maybe I could add another challenge in the labyrinth to hit 30,000 words.  I finished the fight scenes.  What I haven’t finished, a note to myself if anything, is how Milo and Marianne escape the statues.  I will finish that scene out and brainstorm on another challenge for them to face. The fight scene I had between Milo and the facsimile of the Dark Prince was more of a physical fight.  I originally thought it would be more the Dark Prince trying to manipulate Milo’s mind but decided against it.  I’m looking for ways to pull out of the cerebral aspects of the story. After the story is finished, I can start doing the different edits.  I don’t know what to do for the book cover.  Preferably I would like an artist to do the cover.  The question is how do I go about finding an artist?  I’ve met authors at conventions.  As a part of a study of them, I look at the books they put together and the

12 July 2020

Song mood: Zoo Station by U2.  Although I’m not sure I’m ready for anything. Goal for the week is to finish the second draft.  Then to both start the next book and to edit.  A tool that I picked up from one of my writer friends is .  Kind of like a thesaurus but possibly better. I still haven’t figured out what I am doing for August poems.  So far the museums are not opening up.  The only one I found that was openning next week was in Hastings, NE.  And that one is a science museum.  What I need is someone who is good as a writing exercise list generator.  Or someone who could come up with a writing exercise task.  Who could come up with an easy to do poetry theme for a month.  I need a writing partner.  Well, I need a partner.  A partner in crime possibly? I still haven’t figured out my camera.  I’m still behind on French.  I want to be ready by the next time I go. I still haven’t figured out a lot of things.  I will go back to the small portions mult

10 July 2020

Song mood: One Week by Barenaked Ladies.  It was just a matter of song progression.  Watching Hamilton and enjoying Jonathan Grof play George the Third.  Then my mind wandered over to hip hop and went to Lil Kim, whom I never really listened to but one of her songs was in a movie I like, which lead back to Barenaked Ladies.  And a song that just fits me. After eating my yogurt, I went nine hours without eating.  I bought some cherries while I was grocery shopping and was eating them while I went from grocery store to Raising Canes.  And I felt ill again.  So I am abandoning the idea of the intermittent fasting.  Or I will change how I use it.  I will go back to small meals and controlled portions, which worked before.  Like if I go to Chipotle, just eat half a burrito and save the rest for later.  I will have to cut out Raising Canes all together. I think it was the Triscuts that got me this time.  I wouldn’t stop eating them while I was working.  The fix is easy for that.  Portion o

9 July 2020

Song mood: Boombastic by Shaggy.  No idea why that song popped into my head.  Just a series of different songs move around in my head.  As I googled the song, I saw a video where Sting did a collaboration with Shaggy. I’m tired.  Fourth day in on this intermittent fasting.  Felt a little ill after eating Chipotle for my meal today.  It happens.  Maybe tomorrow will be a series of small light meals.  As I research, there are a few signs that you need to pay attention to and stop fasting.  Once you feel better, then you can go back.  It depends on how I feel when I wake. I didn’t want to write tonight.  I was tired and feeling a bit ill.  I wrote anyway.   I thought of an idea when walking.  If the Dark Prince embedded part of his soul in the labyrinth, then he can show up at the end.  I know I stole that from The Chamber of Secrets , Tom Riddle’s diary.  But that’s what writer’s do, they steal.  Whether they know it or not.  The trick is to make the idea your own, present it in yo

6 July 2020

Song mood: Magic Stick by Lil Kim ft 50 Cent.  Not sure why that song popped in my head.  King George the Third’s song in Hamilton   plays in my head, well, the da da part anyway. In the hour that I wrote, I wrote 1146 words.  I’ve now hit 20,000 for the second time.  I will need to do a little brainstorming for what else to write.  And I haven’t written the big battle between Marianne and Kurt Grey.  Which I’m a little hesitant to write.  The fight scene isn’t my forte.  Nor is the space battles, but I like writing those scenes. So that was my day off, writing for an hour, walking and watching both Doctor Who and Father Brown.  It’s kind of tough to watch the very first season of Doctor Who as the Doctor doesn’t even know who the Daleks are.  In the first ever season, the Doctor doesn’t try or want to try to save anyone.  It is said that the Daleks were representing the racial hate and Nazism.  Over the years the backstory was written or rewritten so that the Daleks were the arch

4 July 2020 My Trip

Tomorrow I head back to Omaha.  It's been a good trip.    Today, I spent most of the day hanging out with my nephews.  The middle boy is 3 or 4 years old and likes to call me uncle All Might, which is his favorite anime character.    The oldest has Autism.  He is very different compared to the other two.  He was sitting in the living room, being all quiet sitting under a box.  And then out of nowhere he breaks out and does the 'coffin dance.' Both my sister and my mother tell him, no 'coffin dance.' I didn't know such a thing existed until they explained what it was.  I googled it, it's a real thing.  He would ask me questions about the Catacombs and Big Ben.  And play videos where Big Ben was destroyed and I told him that they were movies.  He is deathly afraid of fire works.  He didn't want to light any up because he doesn't like loud noises and didn't have his ear muffs with him.      The middle child would get dangerously close to the firewor

2 July 2020

Apart from the massive headache, it's been a good day.  I met youngest nephew today for the first time.  He seemed to like me and that's a good thing. I experienced a moment of intense dejavu, a week after the last episode of dejavu.  I was telling myself, my sister is going to say this.  The television will say that.  Then I search my memories to see will happen in the future and tell myself it doesn't work that way. I then think of the movie 'Arrival' and tell myself I should finish reading 'Story of Your Life,' by Ted Chiang the novella that inspired the movie. I know I should be working on finishing the second draft.  But the headache has only dulled slightly after taking Tylenol and Ibuprofen. Yesterday, I ate a 16oz bag of cherry nibs and drank a 16oz can of Coke and now everything seems to be out of whack. Tomorrow, I go my hometown and visit a couple of my uncles.  It's a 90 minute drive from the big town that my mum and sister live in to my home

The Glass Hotel

So, on my drive up to Fargo, I listened to the rest of 'The Glass Hotel' and found it more of a disappointment.  It turned out to be a biography of several people, and a cautionary tale of trusting the wealthy. Was it a ghost story? Possibly.  The novel was a slice of life of several people during the 2008 financial meltdown.  The question is, what was the point to the story?  Most of the characters were connected in some way but not all knew each other.  It had a faint smattering of supernatural elements.  I wouldn't really classify it as a horror novel.  It was however, fine writing, but made me wonder what the point of it was.  People knock genre writing, but stories that fall into whatever genre has to have a point or a goal.  Slice of life stories don't seem to have a goal, people just do whatever and there is hardly a character arc. Those are my thoughts on the book, and I can be wrong.  I was expecting one kind of story and got another and that is what is botheri