Monday, July 21, 2014

Today on The Fictorians I talk about one of the odd perks of being a writer. Check it out!

Monday, July 7, 2014

Whew!

Whew! I survived June, AKA the super crazy month. I can honestly say that I don't recommend holding down two jobs and rehearsing a play at the same time. Caffeine just wasn't enough to keep me going in the end.

When I figured out my juggling act back in March I failed to take fatigue into account. I foolishly thought that I could keep up with everything the same way I could four years ago when I retired from the stage. I hadn't aged that much. I would be fine.

Ha ha ha!

I had a twelve day stint where I was pulling fifteen hour days in order to keep up with the workload, learn my lines, as well as meet deadlines without any downtime. I met my deadlines and everything else but I was so tired at the end that I collapsed for two days and did absolutely nothing. Heck, I'm still recovering from that stint.

Since I don't have any deadlines in the near future I'm going to take a break from writing until the show closes. I need to rest so I have the energy I need for the day job and performances. Plus my to read stack has reached monumental proportions. It will be nice to have the time to whittle down the stacks a bit. Of course this break might have to be cut short. I've got three submissions out right now. If any or all of them are purchased then I'll have to adjust, which is okay. I'll take whatever downtime I can get at this point.

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

I have a post up on The Fictorians today. I talk about how to deal with monkey-throwing wrenches. Check it out.

Monday, June 16, 2014

Stay tuned...

I'm in the middle of a twelve day stint with no time off which means:

1) I'm exhausted.
2) I haven't had the time to write a new blog post.

So unfortunately I must leave you wanting. However, it's not for too long. I do have a post on the Fictorian Era coming up next Tuesday (the 24th). I'll post the link once it goes up.

Take care. I hope your week is less crazy than mine.

Monday, June 2, 2014

Changing the past for a better future


Spoiler warning!

I saw X-Men: Days of Future Past last week. I was on the fence about it at first. I'm still cringing from what they did to the Phoenix saga in X3 and despite some good performances First Class was a bit of a bore. However curiosity got the better of me. I had to see Bishop on the big screen. He's always been a favorite.

Bishop didn't disappoint (the little we got to see him) and the Sentinels were super scary and bad ass. The Time in a Bottle sequence was the best three minutes of the movie and I have to give the writers props for doing an admirable job retconning X3 out of existence (not going to cry about that). However they created unnecessary conflict in the past when all they needed to do was put the existing conflict in the future to better use. 

Kitty, Bishop, Colossus, Warpath, Blink, Sunspot, and Iceman was everything the X-men should be. They were a strong team of people who trusted each other implicitly in the most dire of situations and combined their strengths in amazing ways to fight back. It saddened me that we didn't see more of their struggles, how they became so cohesive. That's the movie I wanted to see. 

Did we need to spend 70% of the movie in the past? No. The final scene with the Sentinel attack on the White House lawn would have been just as good if it was in the shadow of the Eiffel Tower. All of the key story elements could have been done in half the time, leaving a plenty of room for distopic battles that let the diverse future team shine. 

In spite of the setting imbalance and the fact that we didn't get to see Bishop, Warpath, Blink and the others nearly enough I still enjoyed it. There were enough geeky goodies to keep me happy and the resolution was satisfying.   

Monday, May 19, 2014

The crossfit writing regimen

My days are punctuated by the deafening music, floor breaking thuds, and adrenaline fueled yops from the crossfit gym next door. Every morning and evening the members do several laps around the block. I assumed that it was their warm up but I'm not sure anymore.

Lately a few of the members have added extra equipment to their run and I'm not talking about hand weights. They're dragging hundred pound weights -- the kind you usually see on a barbell -- or large duffle bags filled with dark matter for all I know. I'm not a runner. Big boobs and crooked achilles tendons have guaranteed that I never will become one. However, if I were I wouldn't be crazy enough to carry a fifty pound duffle across my shoulders because sooner or later my face would meet the pavement.

I understand that it's the Super Saiyan training method. Since technology won't allow humans to train under 4X gravity they're using the tools available. It's logical but still baffles me. Why push so hard? A conventional workout is much safer.

After considering it for a while I realized that I do the same thing with my writing. Every time I try to meet an insanely close deadline or write from a POV outside my norm I pick up that bag of dark matter and heft it around the block. Yes, it's scary. Yes, I do often find my face meeting the pavement. But every time I try I make it a little further. It only takes one fall to remember that a certain spot has uneven pavement.

The story I'm writing now is a new genre for me, and a new kind of POV. However it's also a story that a year ago I wouldn't have been able to tackle. Then it would have been too far outside my abilities to even consider and the story would have lacked because of it. I know it's scared a few of my beta readers when I told them what I'm attempting with this story.

Now I agree that it's probably not the most conventional way to strengthen my creative muscles but it seems to work for me. I'm up to the point where I can take the duffle bag around the next corner and discover what obstacles and challenges await. I may still fall flat on my face and earn a few new scars but I can live with that. Scars are cool.

Monday, May 5, 2014

An overlooked resource

When it comes time for an author to promote their newest book the local bookstores are often the first stop (and if they're not than they should be). However where a lot of authors go wrong is that they try to get the store to carry the book rather than get the staff to sell the book. The difference is bigger than you think. If you want to know how to take advantage of their selling skills take a look at my post on the Fictorians.

My next post on the Fictorians is coming this Friday (5/9). I'll be talking about one of my favorite books. You won't want to miss it.