In the ink well

Dog Ear

September 29, 2016

Frustrations (DOG EAR)

’ve written these before. Usually I explain what I thought writing would be, and then what it actually is. Generally it’s some mechanical nutbaggery, something that doesn’t bring understanding or joy or excitement to others (and myself). Thursday was posting day for another Dog Ear piece, one about Government Labs. It was just a fun piece, something I whipped out in the moment when I noticed the thoughts I had over that phrase and how worn out it’s becoming. Just a fun little thing. I’d had it prepped a few days early. It should be no problem to get it […]
September 22, 2016

Perfect makes Practice (DOG EAR)

y brother is Mr. Fixit. Everyone goes to him for practical tinkerings. When we got the phone call that my dad was sliding away, we were in his garage replacing the bearings on my bike’s wheel hub. My sister, she’s the international speaker on medical issues. She does all those conferences and speaking tours. And she also shoves probes up people’s wazzos and makes damn good money doing it. When it comes to medical questions, everyone rings her up. Me? Heh. Me. What do I bring to the table? Outside of corporate compliance and a wide span of devoured books, […]
September 15, 2016

Offstage epic (DOG EAR)

eah, Hikaru. You might have recalled him when I talked about him and the game of Go a few weeks ago HERE. So I’m still playing (had an epic win last week that left me walking on clouds, but today, the computer just beat me like a rug). But it’s life.                       So Hikaru is up for the pro exam. He’s got to get through this if he’s going to face off against his rival. But the snot-nosed kid who has been obnoxious to the point of becoming a temporary […]
September 8, 2016

Government Lab (DOG EAR)

ust a quick observation tonight. Was sitting on the couch in the splash screen for Stranger Things on Netflix. Okay, so everyone is raving about it and the boss said watching this will be part of my review. I’d watched five minutes a week or so back and had been unimpressed. But with everyone pushing I decided to give it another look. But we’re not going to talk about the show. No. This is a writing (and sometimes storytelling) blog. We’re going to talk about words. And images. There on the screen, in the series description, two words. Government Lab. […]
September 1, 2016

Scooby Snacks (DOG EAR)

kay, so it’s a bit of a misuse of the phrase. Scooby Snacks were given to Scooby Doo, the dog, and Shaggy, the late-bloomer cowardly hippy, as rewards and courage-enhancers. The term I’m looking for here are the more traditional doggie snacks in cartoons that would make the hound vault straight up into the air, then come leafing down in a state to total bliss, they were so good. But “Doggie Snacks” wouldn’t get you in here, but a reference to “Scooby Doo” would. And here you are. So, what was the point of this? The point is writers’ bliss, […]
August 25, 2016


here is a power to storytelling. It makes me wonder of all the lives it might change. How many people look at a story (in books, in movies, around a campfire) and can trace a lifechange back to that? Perhaps there are people who found happiness and grace from modeling themselves after positive role models out of the endless worlds of human imagination. Of course, granted, there are also those who hold guns like gangstas, who smoke, and who ruin their lives because of simplistic images presented to them. Who knows – perhaps somewhere in the 1844 a promising doctor […]
August 18, 2016

Punked (DOG EAR)

o I did the three R’s on a friend’s book, The Eyre Affair (Received, Read, Reviewed). Attempted to Rave but, as mentioned HERE, I got Rejected. Man, felt bad about this. However, my wife and I did do dinner with this person a while later. It was one of those comfortable evenings; a quiet restaurant, good conversation, good food. And even though she’d bombed the book, I mentioned it anyway. I thought it was good, regardless. Hey, everyone’s a critic, present blogger included. Oh, and minor spoilers ahead, that is, if you are going to read Jane Eyre and wish […]
August 11, 2016

Andre (DOG EAR)

o last week, we chatted about Athos, the literary character I see myself as. This week, we’ll look to Andre-Louis Moreau, the character I wish I could be. Andre, a lawyer from Gavrillac, is a man famously described as “born with a gift of laughter and a sense that the world was mad.” He gets royally screwed (actually, in this case, nobly screwed) by the Marquis de la Tour d’Azyr, who butchers his friend and forces him (like Athos) to hide in the gutter. But Andre undergoes a series of transformations, eventually becoming a man of influence, power and deadliness. […]
August 4, 2016

Athos (DOG EAR)

een thinking of Athos a lot recently, the oldest, wisest, drunkest, and darkest of the famous Musketeers. In the recent BBC adaptation, Athos is played handily Tom Burke, who might be a wee bit young and drunk on demand. No, for my money, it was Oliver Reed back in the 70s who hit it on the head, portraying the man who’d once been the Count de la Fère before he’d hung his wife for the thief she was and sank into low-class oblivion as a lowly musketeer. There have been other Athoses of course, including John Malkovich, which is all […]
July 28, 2016

Backed with fists (DOG EAR)

as going to lunch, my wife and another couple the other day. Mentioned I was reading The Eyre Affair. The woman in the front seat hardly turned. “By Jasper Fforde”? I blinked. “Wow! How would you know that?” She told me she’d started it a couple of weeks ago. Me, I’m midway through and really enjoying it. I started to babble about how funny it was (militant astronomer groups?) and she sniffed (you couldn’t hear it, but all the evidence was there for a down-her-nose dismissal). “Oh, I dropped it after the first chapter. It wasn’t very good.” I started […]