Dog Ear
Thin Skinned (DOG EAR) PDF Print E-mail
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Wednesday, 20 February 2019 21:09

kay, so I’m literally not sure what I can say about this.

I mentioned that I dropped out of Powers of the Earth because of the pro-libertarian/anti-everyone-else take. I didn’t particularly enjoy being a straw-man in this tale.

And then there is Without Warning,  an Audio Book I’m listening to right now. In general, it’s a bit Anti-Muslim (literally a “you’ll miss us when we’re gone” kinda book, to be reviewed soon). The only reason I’m sticking with it is that I really do want to know why American was vaporized.

Yes, so I’ve been getting battered around the head and shoulders by angry conservative writing. If the story is good, I’ll stay. If it isn’t, I’ll just put it down. But I hadn’t given it much more thought then this until a friend invited me to her Catholic service last weekend. Nice church and good people. I stood. I sat. I knelt. I monologged. All fine. But it hit me after that I had my copy of Altered Carbon in the car outside. For a quick review (a better one is coming up shortly), in the world of the future death is less an obstacle. Your memories and personality can be “re-sleeved” into another body. And outside the resleeving facility the Catholics are protesting, just a bunch of screaming, spitting wankers angry about man denying God His souls. Most of the characters are pretty disdainful of them, recounting how they’ve achieved nothing but  anti-science regression in 2500 years. And I realized, as I walked down the shady church steps, that this didn’t bother me at all.

Thinking further, reading about the Mormons getting their ship nationalized by the very space dock that built it in Leviathan Wakes (and ineffectively unable to legally retake it) was rather funny. But I’m not Mormon. And I’m not Catholic. So it didn’t bother me.

But I’m leftist, and ultra-conservative positions do.

I never thought of myself as a literary shirker. Either I never noticed it, or it’s never been an issue. Not sure. I’ll just have to make sure I’m really really true when I’m working through my various literary projects. Like A Case for Christ, which I’m currently reading/picking-apart. We’ll see.

But then again, as a reviewer, I bring a certain amount of “me” to my reviews. I tend to say if I like a book, but for honest reasons.

Stay tuned as I struggle endlessly with ethics in entertainment!

>>>I DO LIKE MY OWN BOOKS. AND THE ONLY PEOPLE WHO WILL GET PISSED ARE MELQART-WORSHIPERS…<<<

 
A reflection on time (DOG EAR) PDF Print E-mail
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Friday, 15 February 2019 05:44

ime is always a sour subject with me.

I’ve never had enough of it. Even without kids, even with a quiet, low-maintenance wife, there isn’t. I haven’t written seriously (my old Tuesday/Thursday lockdown) for years now. And there are the dusty model  trains, the abandoned telescope, the unwatched movies. But still, in all this, I’m active, frantically so.

My recent efforts have been writing StoreyMinus, an interactive game that is nearing something like completion. And then there are two nights each week at the train club. Oh, and my buddy who is in a distant hospital, necessitating a long 2-3 nights/week drive. So yes, all my time drains away and I’m left with nothing.

Especially not time to focus on writing.

However, one good thing – I’ve been thinking of retirement (early retyrement, nyuk nyuk). I was thinking of putting in for it in November and backed out. Now, suddenly, the company is trying to reduce its grayhairs and I’m eligible for a handsome buyout. I plan to take it. Not sure what this sudden deluge of time will actually be like. It could be like those hardscrabble desert communities that suddenly are inundated with rain and become swampy morasses. And the retirees in my club tell me they never have time now, now that they’ve jumped ship.

So I’m looking at having to restructure myself for the next part of my life. Wondering if maybe I’ll assign writing days and review my older works (specifically Indigo and Wenamon) for submission to a new generation of literary agents. I’ve got to do something. In a matter of months, I’m going to have buckets of time.

>>>IF YOU HAVE TIME, YOU SHOULD CHECK OUT THE BOOKS I HAVE MANAGED TO PUBLISH. FOLLOW THIS LINK TO THE RAYMOND LITERARY MUSEUM!<<<

 
Libertarian Grind (DOG EAR) PDF Print E-mail
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Thursday, 07 February 2019 17:35

just started a new SciFi series a friend of mine sent me for Christmas. When I pursued the back cover, I noted all the libertarian praise. Guns and dogs and freedom comments.

A fatigue fell over me.

I’ve read a couple of libertarian books before and, without exception, they are always the same. A buff, handsome entrepreneur, heavy with bitter backstories and loaded for bear, decides to make a stand against a mass of people so liberally unlikable that it brings tears to your eyes. If you’ve ever enjoyed socialist privilege, even to the point of checking out a library book, you feel a sense of guilt. If you’re not prepping in some cabin surrounded by tripwires and mantraps, you’re part of the problem.

Please.

I’m an admitted socialist (an unpopular stance these days) and I believe in the power of cooperation. If I’m going to break a leg, I’d rather be in a community than up on a mountain where no amount of bold passion and frontier spirit is going to save my life. And I like HG Well’s stories, where the future is a better place for its government. It’s my admitted preference.

Further, I don’t need to believe passionately in something to enjoy the story. Manly action stories, Christian spiritual stories, sea stories, Indian epics, westerns and science fiction in their many forms, I’ve enjoy them all . My library is full and wide and diverse. I’ll give anything a read as long as it’s good.

The problem I have with libertarian stories is that they provide a simplistic setup between the good guys and the evil give-it-away liberals. The heroes have guns, dogs, a good woman at their side and a free-fire clearing before their compound, all the better in which to stack the corpses of drones of the state. And that’s what is so tedious, the straw-man nature of the villains and the tooth-sparkle smile of the hero.

Give me a break.

If you want to sell me on libertarianism (which is, to me, anarchy on the gold standard) you need to give me a good story. Your hero must be believable and your villains understandable. If you want to cartoon your ideals, to make things as simplistic as an action movie, I’m out. You are simply preaching to the choir, making a book you and your little bring-down-the-government friends might enjoy but nobody else will. It was tedious in Atlas Shrugged and it still is today.

Don’t insult me. Sell me.

>>>FORTURNATLY, THE ONLY POLITICS IN FIRE AND BRONZE IS THE STUGGLE OVER THE THRONE OF TYRE. WHO WILL WIN, PRINCE OR PRINCESS? BUY A COPY AND FIND OUT<<<

 
Must see (DOG EAR) PDF Print E-mail
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Wednesday, 30 January 2019 22:45

ack in my younger years, some forty years past, I would attempt to get people to see favorite movies. I’d loan them my VHS tapes. I’d offer to sit with them in the theater. I’d nag and beg and plead. I’d even bribe.

I remember coming home to tell my brother all about the Anime Star Blazers we’d been following religiously in college. Or Run Lola Run. Or just about any great flick or series or episode.

And you know what – 99% of the time, nobody would spare the time.

Apparently the greatest gift, that of time, was not given. People would fob me off in all sorts of way. And granted, I accept that I was a little insufferable about it. But really, if a friend raves about something, wouldn’t you want to humor them, even just a little bit? No?

And this is what you face as a writer. If you think that people don’t want to give you two hours for a movie, realize that you will be asking them to give you ten or twenty hours for your book. That’s quite a big request. So, yes, if you are going to write your “Great American Novel”, it’s got to be good. You can’t stand around the Barnes and Noble and beg people to read it like some sort of pathetic Fozzie Bear. You need an idea so interesting that people are drawn in, and you’ve got to hold them long enough to set the hook of curiosity. If anything about your story stalls, in any place, you’ll lose them.

If someone takes the time to review your work and they tell you they don’t like it, you’d better listen. Arguing with them doesn’t solve anything. You’ve already lost them. You don’t want to lose future readers.

As far as my movie-pushing goes, I found myself giving up on this as time went on. It just frustrated me to whine and press and get nowhere. My favorite movies are wasted on people. Oh, every so often, my niece and I will have a movie night and share flicks – that’s a lot of fun. And my daughter, we’ll cozy up with a great flick we’ve seen a dozen times and just enjoy each other’s company.

But the rest of you? Forget it. You just don’t understand.*

>>>AND HERE’S WHERE I PRESS MY BOOKS. JUST LIKE MOVIES. BUT DAMMIT, THEY’RE GOOD. HAVE A LOOK. PLEASE?<<<

*Gotcha

 
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