Archive for October, 2010

November Writing Goals

31 Oct

Perhaps I should take inspiration from NaNoWriMo and set my own goals for the month. I won’t ask myself to write an entire new story (even if its not 50,000 words), because I don’t want to let myself abandon the projects I’m already working on.

So, I think my goal will be to write every night, at least for 30 minutes (actual writing, not re-reading or editing) on a story I’m currently working on, with the goal of completing it by the end of the month.

It may not be a whole novel, but it might end up a novella.


30 Oct

It’s almost November, and everywhere, novelists and want to be novelists are preparing for National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo). The goal of NaNoWriMo is to write an entire novel (50,000 words) in a single month. I will not be participating.

It has nothing to do with needing to write 1667 words per day. I could do that in 2-3 hours. It has to do with my process. Even if I think I know where the story is going when I start, it rarely follows the map. True, NaNoWriMo is about volume, not quality, but the novel still needs internal cohesion.

Saying Goodbye

29 Oct

This is the last time I will hear the familiar click of acrylic on keys. After over 12 years of nearly continuous wear, I am removing my acrylic nails.

In Reno, where air-brushing was part of the deal, I would get fantastical designs. Come Halloween, I’d have a witch flying across a moon over a nighttime cityscape on every nail. Recently, its been French manicures, but with color.

But I no longer have desire I once had to maintain them the way they should be. So I am saying goodbye to my nails. I will miss them, but its time.

MythBusters (ep 151)

28 Oct

Tablecloth Pull: I get that small scale they did testing with material and smoothness of the table, but it would be nice in the large scale to see them consider varying a factor other than speed. Still, I bet Jamie was thrilled to have an excuse to take that motorcycle up to 100mph.

Brain Power: We use more than 10% of our brain, so the myth is technically busted, but I think the spirit is confirmed. At 30%, Tory (not a dummy) is still using only 1/3 of his brain. Now I want to know what parts we don’t use.

Just Finished Reading: Anathem by Neal Stephenson (3)

27 Oct

Once the action in the book gets going, everything moves faster, but concepts and philosophical lines of thought are still being introduced. They make sense and don’t require as much thought because Stephenson laid the foundation so very well in the early sections. Still, I have to wonder if I would have benefited from reading the whole book at the pace I went through those first 120 pages; if I had not let the action distract me from the philosophy. It’s a book that I will read again and that I believe will get better with repeated journeys through it.


Just Finished Reading: Anathem by Neal Stephenson (2)

26 Oct

Stephenson takes the idea of speculative fiction seriously. He has a bit of an explanation at the beginning and a glossary at the end, but you can choose to forgo reading either of those before reading the body of the book. (I did.) Of course, that means that for the first 120 or so pages, it took me 3 times as long to read a page as normal. I was stopping every 20 pages or so to think about what I’d just read. I needed to sort through the language being used as well as the new concepts being introduced.


Just Finished Reading: Anathem by Neal Stephenson (1)

25 Oct

I don’t know if I could define speculative fiction if you asked me to. I’ll leave that to the critics. What I can recognize is good fiction, no matter what you call it. Neal Stephenson is one of my favorite authors, so its not surprising that I liked Anathem, but its a very different book than what you would expect from the author of Snow Crash.

Take a first contact story and wrap it in a philosophical discussion and you have the basic idea, though Stephenson is too gifted a story teller for that description to do the novel justice.

Ending the AARP Monopoly on Government Subsidized Healthcare

24 Oct

I believe a 7 year old is just as entitled to quality healthcare as a 70 year old. If it is government’s job to make sure the elderly have access to medical treatment, why isn’t it their job to make sure children do too? Not all parents have jobs that offer healthcare benefits for themselves, let alone their children, and even fewer have affordable benefits.

Do not give me the Medicaid argument. Needy seniors qualify for Medicaid, too, but we don’t limit subsidized healthcare only to them. Its time we started caring for our future as well as our past.

Let Me Be Your Death Panel

23 Oct

What happens if you are incapacitated and incapable of making decisions for yourself? Who gets to decide what treatments you receive, if any? Your doctors? No. The government? Let’s hope not. Unless you have a medical Durable Power of Attorney, the order is this: spouse, adult children, parents, siblings, adult grandchildren, etc. If you have more than one adult child, they all have to agree (to be verified by the care givers) on treatment before anything can be done.

By thinking ahead and giving someone DPOA status, you get to choose whose hands your life is in. Think about it.

Social Security

22 Oct

Social Security is NOT a retirement plan. You do not deserve Social Security because you have paid into it your entire working life. You were never paying for yourself.

I say this as someone who doubts that Social Security will be in existence by the time I retire. But I don’t balk at paying it. Social Security is there to care for the previous generations of workers- for my grandparents, and soon enough, my parents.

That’s what Social Security is. Its today’s workers taking care of yesterday’s, making sure they have a roof over their heads, heat, food, and healthcare.

100 Words On

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