Stories that Stay with Me – Four

Blog No. 399

am800-news-st-clair-college-building-far-view-july2016I have no idea where the memory for this post came from. The break in the heat and a nice couple of days probably helped, but really, it’s a pretty specific memory. Maybe it was a dream or just a stray particle bumped the right neuron. Either way. I was in grade school. Maybe grade seven. The house I lived in at the time backed onto St. Clair when there was mostly empty fields and not the rapid construction going on now. From my bedroom, I had a great view of our back yard, the fence, the wide field, a row of trees, and bits of old Huron Line through the gaps in the tree line. I was bad for doing homework (sorry mom and dad) and didn’t spend a lot of time at my desk working, but I would spend a lot of time goofing off. I’d listen to tapes on my little stereo and do all kinds of random things at that desk, overlooking the fields. Continue reading “Stories that Stay with Me – Four”

It’s Come to This

Blog No. 398

a9843fb1c0d2370a2f20647b8c0268edI’ve tried hard over the last few years to avoid writing posts about not having anything to write about. I relied on that strategy around this time for several years until I started doing more events and got into writing reviews about them. Maybe those event recaps aren’t the most interesting thing to read, but I hope they’re better than constantly commenting that I have no ideas. With no events to rely on and the Invasion Novel still not finished, I don’t think I have much of a choice but to ramble my way through another post without having much to say. Or, maybe I’ll find a good topic right at the end and have something to expand upon next week. Continue reading “It’s Come to This”

Stories that Stay with Me – Three

Blog No. 397

220px-the_matrix_posterI’m going to do another Stories that Stay with me this week because nothing else is really going on other than adding more words to the Invasion Novel but still not finishing it. More words isn’t bad, but I have to finish it eventually. Besides, it’s never going to be any good until I start fixing it in the next few drafts. For now, I wanted to talk about a movie, a theatre, and a friendship. Its a nice memory that I think will make for an interesting enough story. In 1999, a movie came out that changed how action and science fiction movies would be made from then on. I’m not talking about The Thirteenth Floor. It was, The Matrix. Continue reading “Stories that Stay with Me – Three”

Stories that Stay with Me – Two

Blog No. 396

tumblr_nvcg9yzycw1sh05g3o1_500Back when I was in high school, I got into the habit of spending hot summer days in the basement sitting on an old couch and watching movies on my parent’s first VCR. It was a huge grey beast that cost them something like a thousand dollars when they bought it. Years later it was relegated to the basement with the same old TV from the blog I wrote about watching Aliens with my dad. My parents also had a huge library of tapes (several hundred at one point) and I had many of my own. I would sit on the couch, running to the chest freezer to grab popsicles or freezies and watch movie after movie. One day I watched Blade Runner. I don’t think it was the first time, but for some reason, that watch had more impact than the others. I was in the habit of watching the credits back then, and at the end of the list of names and titles was a line of text that said the movie was based on the book, Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep by Philip K. Dick. Continue reading “Stories that Stay with Me – Two”

Like Dickens Before Me

Blog No. 395

absolutely_right_zoolanderA few days ago I was struggling with my daily writing and hit a wall. (It may have been some time last week, time has stopped having much meaning in March). I’ve since gotten back on track with the Invasion Novel (for the most part). Instead of doing nothing that day (something that had been happening more than I’d like) I opened up a blank document and wrote my daily word count towards a new project. I’m not sure when I’ll get to spend much time with it, or how far I’ll go, but it was better to work on something rather than nothing, right? Continue reading “Like Dickens Before Me”

A Short Little Post for my Birthday (2020)

Blog No. 394

20200608_111717This year the stars have aligned and this post is coming out on my birthday. Like today. It’s my birthday. Right now (as long as you are reading this on the day it was released). Not that birthdays are all that big a deal. I suppose I’m at the age where only the milestone years are really celebrated (and my first big milestone is next year). I can’t remember when the switch happened, but birthdays haven’t really meant that much to me for many years. For a while I was content to just think of them as a normal day, but my mom pointed out how it’s as much her day as it is mine, and that makes a lot of sense, so I got a little more into celebrating them again. I suppose it’s nice to have a day a year that’s all about you. Where being selfish is okay (to a point). I’m lucky enough to have a close core family and some fantastic friends, so I get my moments to feel special throughout the year when they are thoughtful, kind, and supportive. Not to say celebrating isn’t nice too.

Of course, the pandemic is still ongoing (not that you would know with so many people not observing the proper isolation protocols). My birthday will be spent alone. Maybe I’ll play some games with my brother. Maybe I’ll just sleep most of the day away. There’s been a weird feeling hovering over my for the last few years that may be the extent of my mid-life crisis. Some things that were meaningful to me in my youth don’t exist anymore. It’s acute over my birthday since some of my best birthday memories were the co-birthdays I had with my friend Arvin at places like the Loop. Now he’s living in Toronto with his wife and kids and the Loop doesn’t exist anymore. It’s nothing more than nostalgia. We’re both doing well now, even if our youthful dreams didn’t pan out the way we thought, we’re working towards our current dreams. I’m inching closer to an ending for the Invasion Novel. I hope I can get there. (The endings are always more work for some reason).

Anyway. It’s my birthday and if you feel like doing something nice for me, you can do a review of any of my books that you’ve read. Goodreads or Amazon are good places for that. The Goodreads links are actually on the right side of this page. No obligation and feel free to be honest. Stay safe out there, and be vigilant!

Murderbot

Blog No. 393

32758901._uy1019_ss1019_I’ve recently finished reading the first four books of the Murderbot Diaries by Martha Wells. There are two more books in the series, one out now and the other announced, but they are both novels. The ones I’ve finished are novellas, and seeing as the new ones are novels, they seemed to be the end of an arc. I was quite taken with the first book when I read it. I got it as an ebook since it was on sale (and may still be). I read it quickly and generally had a good time with it. I was eager to get to the next book (it was already out, and I think the other two were either forthcoming or just newly released at the time). I didn’t, though, because it was so expensive. I have an issue with the current price of ebooks ever since the publishers managed to take control of the pricing. I only buy ebooks on sale now, since the prices can be way too high. (When I can get a paperback for ten dollars, I’m not spending the same or more for a digital copy). Continue reading “Murderbot”

Another Milestone

Blog No. 392

sourceI’m nowhere near finished the first draft of the Invasion Novel and a lot of that has to do with my lack of effort over the last few days. My sleep is still all over the place and after a few bad nights I failed to reach my minimums. It’s not uncommon for me to have one or two completely sleepless nights in a month, but seeing as I haven’t had a particularly good sleep in a while, I felt like a zombie the last few days. That’s my excuse at least. With that in mind, I have reached a new personal best. The Invasion Novel is now the largest story I’ve written (and I’m not finished, yet). Continue reading “Another Milestone”

Stories that Stay with Me – One

Blog No. 391

hqdefaultSince I don’t have much in the way of writing news and I doubt many people would be interested in a weekly word count update on the Invasion Novel (85 000 at the writing of this post) I’ve come up with something else to write about. Look up at the title (assuming you either ignored it or forgot what it sad like I always do). That’s right, I’m going to somehow (I haven’t worked out the details even thought I’m writing it right now) do posts about some of the stories that have stuck with me over the years. Some of them are from books, or television, or movies, and some may be from real life. That’s not to say they are all excellent, but there was something about them that took up residence in my subconscious and come back to me when something triggers the memory. I figured talking about how I first experienced those stories, guessing at what about them impacted me, and how the memories come back would be something interesting I could play around with while there isn’t much news to share. Continue reading “Stories that Stay with Me – One”

Minimums

Blog No. 390

orderlyincompletehoki-size_restrictedHere we are again, dear reader. It’s a new week and if I’ve been able to continue as well as I started, I’ll be feeling good about my progress (remember I write these on Tuesday even now that I’m at home and really I have all the time in the world to write posts on Thursday or even Wednesday night, but I don’t want to break my habit). Not just with the writing, either. After a less than productive weekend, I had a bit of a reset. It happens from time to time. I’ll do well, keeping on top of things, then I’ll hit a wall or get worn out and then things fall apart for a few days. Then I pick myself back up and try again. Sometimes it’s a matter of days and weeks, sometimes months. It’s the same kind of thing I’ve been struggling with over the years with the summer slump. Continue reading “Minimums”