Category Archives: General Wankage

Finally got semi-organized

And worked out what/where I’m going to write in terms of these challenges, like a good spreadsheet geek, to spread out a more organized flash working habit.

Not sure why I kept missing them (“doh, closed two days ago”) before now, guess I’m dense.

Now, if someone could work up a challenge that launches on Thursday…it’s an under-utilized day of the week.


Now, while I’m basking in productive mood, I do believe its time for that hair cut.

Round Tuit Seal


Black and Poisonous

Wicked people never have time for writing. There are so many worlds and characters waiting to be born, but through lack of motivation or lack of inspiration, they wither and die unborn in pools of dark despair. The writer feels it too, the black and poisonous knowledge that he should be producing something, anything, instead of watching television or web surfing.

The habits we should be building, write something every single day, don’t sit and wait for motivation. Grab a club and go drag your story home.

The seeping poison is can’t or won’t. Too tired, too uninspired, I’ll write it later, I’ll write it tomorrow. I hate deadlines, just give me a week and I can crank out something. I don’t like giving away my opening hook, that first sentence is important. What a silly idea, I’ll wait for a better one. I’ve written something just like this before.

Worse yet are the stories bravely begun and then abandoned. What’s next? This is stalling out. Oh, this is terrible. I just need a character. What’s the plot, where is this going?

I ran into an entire website of demotivation, once upon a time. M.F.A.’s and poets; my work was never, ever good enough. Look at all of those grammar and punctuation errors, oh my. Your metaphors are not strong enough, your similes don’t sing. Why do the same people win this competition every week? Your let the judges enter your own competition? Something smells fishy.

Now they want to sell me a membership. Purely for my benefit, of course, there are several levels of helpful advice. I see the direct correlation to the most frequent winners. This “competition” is, blatantly, For Sale.

I went searching for less mercenary setups. There are sites with rotating judges, there are sites dominated by a single clannish writing group, there are “Everyone’s a Winner” sites, too.

Competition does help me improve, even on the sites where it doesn’t feel entirely honest. Those clannish writing groups tend to vote for each other, for instance. Comments from more “social” writing sites help me improve, too, particularly from writers whose work I respect.

I keep a working list of fiction/writing sites that I like for various reasons. I don’t always visit all of them each week. I don’t always contribute stories, nor do I write every day (as I should). Sometimes, the toxic inspiration despair or simple exhaustion after a full time job still wins.

Sometimes, wicked television and evil internet still defeat your white knight, and often without a struggle.

But the sites that Did Things Right keep disappearing, and I feel guilty for that; like one more story might have saved them.

RecDave Seal

For Alissa Leonard and Finish That Thought. I’ll miss you both.


This is the part I don’t like much. The Abomination is together, I’ve got my proof copy, reviewing it for bad typography and unlinked links and such.

It’s the next part that suxors, dealing with the Amazons and the Smashwords of the world.

Gets a little smoother each time I do it, at least. It’s still the most un-fun part of the entire operation.

First World Problems. Wah, wah.

RecDave Seal

Crickets Chirp

About a year ago, I noticed how many blog posts I was making about Dave (and weather, and other random boring crap). Convinced that Dave is a very dull boy, I resolved to make fewer of those.

But things have gotten awfully quiet on the old blog front of late, so I need to feed more social to the media (or something).

At one time I had a daily post habit. Then stopped worrying about it, won’t hurt anything to miss a day or two… Then hit a creative dry spell… Days became weeks. Blah.

That’s just how these things go. I’ve fallen back into the habit of television watching (hisssss), twitter-ing, message board babbling (elsewhere), all at the expense of productive writing.

Let this be a warning to you; I can be easily distracted by shiny objects. Squirrel!

Anyway, I’ll try to do better.

RecDave Seal

Well, Christmas order placed

I suck at gifts. Everyone knows it, I always have.

So I ordered Annie’s gifts today. I can’t tell you what, of course (she spies on me!) But since I know she’s in for her annual letdown, I’ll have to be extra nice in December. Or something.

I wish some bright Phone Ap coder would develop an Expert System for gift selection. No, NOT to market the hell out of you by suggesting only “business partner’s” brands. Think of it more like a dating service, or Pandora (that selects music based on bands you like)–you could input everything you know about your spouse, answer these (50?) questions about her interests, likes, dislikes, etc.

Here’s a list of 100 close gift matches. Would you like to uncheck a few of these to help narrow it down? Would you like to add to it (scoff, remember you suck at gifting)?

Answer a few more questions, randomize; here’s your ten best gift ideas! [list] Want to select any of these, or maybe try again?

Sounds like too much work?

I’m just hoping that reading through a list of ideas might jog loose a non-sucky inspiration. (Eureka!!)

Gift selection for techy nerds. And helpless husbands.

RecDave Seal

We’ll let you know if she’s typically disappointed again this year. Hope she’ll forgive me, again.


Show and Tell

Show, don’t tell. So sayeth the rules.

I keep running into situations where Tell is much, much more brief than Show, and since most of the writing is aimed at brevity-conscious execises…

It comes up quite a lot in micro fiction. I can’t imagine telling a story like O’Malleys Exotic Poultry Supply without a) a  lot of exposition to bring it in under 500, or b) Tripling the length, let the reader provide the explanations. How would you “show” an empathic projection, anyway? #baffled

Anyway, I sometimes get angry with me for exposition expeditions in my story telling. And then I remember why.


Whew. Okay, we’re back.

We killed a modem, somehow. Probably just expired from old age or sheer stubborn perversity. Might’ve had something to do with all the thunderboomers or the phase of the moon. Dustbunnies in the gears? Who knows.

Anyway, we’re back in communication again. New modem, and even saved a hundred bones on the ISP bill, too! So that’s always good.

Now what’d I miss? Did the Publitzer or Nobel selection committees happen to call while I was away? The Hawaiian Tropic Bikini Show?

Would you trust this man?
Would you trust this man?

At last count

I take place in at least eight different writing challenge/contest/exercises weekly. And a few more, irregularly.

It keeps me creating, when I don’t feel creative. It keeps me experimenting, when I don’t feel inspired.

But lately it’s seemed like a lot of blah.

Images that don’t thrill me, topics that do nothing, obvious ideas that seem too trite, motivation to create zero.

Maybe I took on too much? Is writing something on the order of a thousand (at most, two thousand) words a week really too much? Doesn’t seem like it should be.

Am I just burning out? Non-thrilled by the not-brilliant fount of ever-flowing ideas gushing eagerly forth?

What happened to the fun and amusing ideas? Why so serious, Dave? When did you start getting so critical of your hobby? Delusions of grandeur not working out?


Probably just run down this morning (I’ve got a dentist appt., that’s never bright for the life outlook). Suck it up, drama queen.

Anyway, I need to go get my teeth drilled on now, that should be more fun! Weeeeeeeeeeeee!

RecDave Seal

Pure Digression: (“Yo I saw a squirrel run across the street and he didn’t get hit by a car so he was like ‘Weeeeeeee!'”  Thanks, Albino BlackSheep.)

Postscript Addendum: Dental fun fun fun fun all completed. Perhaps now I can stare at the blank page, flipping between the websites containing my prompts, and invent something fabulous?

FABULOUS! (*Two snaps*)

Damn I’m such a slave to pop culture.

I have been informed this post is not SeriousFace enough to be allowed through a certain website’s Gatekeeper Standards. I am heartbroken, of course. I don’t mean to be rude but…”LOL.”

Ok, well, I’m back.

We did a little Chi-Pitts-Philly-Pitts-Chi trip this week.

Annie shot a bazillion tourist-y photos, I didn’t get anything at all written, and a really good time was had by all. Except for the late March snow. But there’s not much you can do about that.

Catching up on email and comment-backlog, what’s been happening on Facebook, etc. It’ll take a while.

In the mean time… Hi, how are you, how have you been?

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