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Archive for May, 2019

Finding Your Voice

Posted by Dirck on 31 May, 2019

I’m going to mislead some people Googling for writing advice with that title. To them, I say– bang out story after story until what you’re doing reads like the whispers inside your own skull.

Now, with the first of TWO duties to assist my fellow humans out of the way, on to this week’s feature. I like doing a variety of voices when I’m reading to my son, although I have a limited repertoire (the historical portion of Red Rackham’s Treasure and its sea-farer-intensive cast is a real struggle). I thus really admire people who can shift their vocalizations around a lot:

Isn’t he a wonder? I have a second duty to a fellow human, just as self-imposed as the other. This guy, who is also adopting the voice of another, is having something of a pledge drive, and I’d like to see him prosper, so I’m boosting his signal (a very little– I’m away of my powers in this):

Today’s Pen: Montblanc 32
Today’s Ink: Diamine Oxford Blue

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Posted by Dirck on 30 May, 2019

 

Day What How Much Pen Ink
  • 27 May
  • 28 May
  • 29 May
  • 30 May
  • First draft of “Found on Roadside, Dead.”
  • Second draft of “Fourteen Nights of Day” (a working title).
  • 6 manuscript pages.
  • 4247 typed words.

I don’t know about you folks, but I’m stunned at this week’s output. When did I learn to type that fast while making use of my creative faculties?

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I Have An Ulterior Motive

Posted by Dirck on 24 May, 2019

It’s an audio presentation today, and in part I want to offer you entertainment (since I generate little of my own here of late), but I also want to signal boost a worthy enterprise:

This mellifluous person with an excellent taste in literature has been told by YouTube that they’ve never going to monetize his stuff. I hope that you’re as taken with his presentation as I am, because I’m hoping to get people to make YouTube feel foolish by clicking on many of his videos, and even more importantly, I’m hoping to make him feel funded by getting people to click on his Patreon page.

Today’s pen: Pilot Vanishing Point
Today’s ink: Herbin Vert Empire

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Posted by Dirck on 23 May, 2019

 

Day What How Much Pen Ink
  • 20 May
  • 21 May
  • 22 May
  • 23 May
  • First draft of “Found on Roadside, Dead.”
  • Second draft of “Fourteen Nights of Day” (a working title).
  • Staring bleakly at a balance sheet
  • 7 manuscript pages.
  • 2413 typed words
  • Several tugs at the collar.

Good heavens! I managed to get some writing done on a long weekend! This gets balanced out by having to take today off to visit my bank, because like everyone else making less than a quarter-million a year, I’m getting killed by the difference between cost of living increases and raises of salary, so things need to be done. On an utterly unrelated point, have I mentioned that I accept donations?

Despite the current financial worries, I appear to be able to afford a robot to hit the “publish” button for this thing. I’m not even looking at it! Oh, what a dizzying age we live in!

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In the Swim

Posted by Dirck on 17 May, 2019

A friend sent me a link to today’s film, saying it was very much in the vein of childhood’s beloved NFB shorts.  This is very true.

I will also mention that there’s a new story up at the writing site; I know in the past “when can we see this stuff?” has appeared in comments, and I appreciate that all tease and no production will lead to disenchantment. There is word of it in the left-hand sidebar, too, but I know I’m not attentive enough to necessarily spot that sort of thing, and I won’t insist that others should be.

Today’s pen: Platinum PKB-2000
Today’s ink: Edelstein Topaz

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Includes Small Healthcare Excursion

Posted by Dirck on 16 May, 2019

 

Day What How Much Pen Ink
  • 13 May
  • 14 May
  • 15 May
  • 16 May
  • First draft of “Fourteen Nights of Day” (a working title).
  • 13 manuscript pages.

That’s not much for the week, especially considering I imported some work from Sunday into this week’s total. So, what’s up?

Gall stones!

Not my own, for which I am grateful, but my wife. I’m hoping this is a purely matrilineal thing (her mother and sister have had similar problems) and that our son remains untouched by it, because she was not having fun when I came home from work on Monday. So little, in fact, that Tuesday morning saw me installing her at the ER, and I was 100% of the household childcare staff for Tuesday and Wednesday. She’s home now, having been shaken free of the blockage of the moment by the modern miracle of ultrasonics, although we’re told the offending organ will have to be removed… probably in the next couple of weeks.

Anyway, without preparation (and the whole time was very much a lack of information exercise; the ER is a bit of a black box) I was unable to get any writing done. Thus, little accomplished. The draft is complete, which is good, since the anthology I aim to submit it to closes in July… unless they fill all their slots before then.

As a data point to my American readers, let me tell you what this week’s entertainment costs were. The entertainment consisted of:

  • Admission to the ER;
  • 36 hours of IV fluids, because surgery might have happened at any time;
  • as much morphine as someone without previous tolerance to stand (apparently gall stones really hurt);
  • ultrasound imagining to get a firm idea of what the problem really was;
  • the ultrasonic treatment;
  • three consultations with doctors;
  • loads of interactions with nurses;
  • the use of hospital linens.

The total cost of this was One Canadian Dollar, paid to park in the lot not devoted to ER patients when I was picking her up. I could, conceivably, not have paid that, but I didn’t want to plug up a parking space close to the door which someone with a box full of severed fingers might need. I’m considerate that way. You might also say “Oh, but you pay so much tax there,” to which I reply– I got a refund on my income tax because our household doesn’t bring in a lot. And were we entirely without income and thus paying no tax, we’d still have got that very same level of treatment. I’d just have trouble coming up with the dollar. This is why the resistance of the US to socialized medicine is such a point of amazement to so many outside that country.

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A Thematic Distraction

Posted by Dirck on 10 May, 2019

You know what’s happening right now, this very minute as I am typing these words? StokerCon!

This is not connected to my son’s still-glowing fascination with steam engines (and outside a ship they tend to be called “firemen”). No, this is a grand assembly of horror writers, and like a variety of pen shows I’ve mentioned in the past I’m not there. Since I’m not, and since I can’t revel in the fellowship of other people who strive to make the flesh of others creep and enjoy programming which caters to that kind of crowd, I’m drawing some solace from this:

For those who scrolled past with a sigh of, “Oh, not him again,” I’ll mention that I thought this wouldn’t be fodder for the Friday Films until I gave it a listen. The racism is not (entirely) ignored or glossed over.

Today’s Pen of Miserable Isolation: Montblanc 32
Today’s Ink of Overblown Self-Pity: Diamine Oxford Blue

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Posted by Dirck on 9 May, 2019

 

Day What How Much Pen Ink
  • 6 May
  • 7 May
  • 8 May
  • 9 May
  • First draft of “Fourteen Nights of Day” (a working title).
  • 22 manuscript pages.

 

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Trans-dimensional

Posted by Dirck on 3 May, 2019

I’m sure we’ve all heard of the concept of multiple universes, whether we accept them or not. Occasionally, one stumbles across an item which gives the idea a little shove into the foreground. “This thing,” one says, “cannot have sprung up in the history I know. This thing is from a similar place, but not the same.”

I was shown one of these this week, and I’m going to share it with you. It’s probably just a prime example of novel-length source material being horribly handled on its way down to a audio-visual version one can easily sit through, but it may also have slithered through a pore in the skin of the universe.

Aside to the possible violence it might do to your notions of causality, it’s also a little hard to take for purely artistic reasons. The fact that stuff like this was considered cutting-edge entertainment in my childhood is part of the reason why I don’t get too nostalgic for that time. Other reasons include… well, when you’ve got a few minutes to spend weeping with despair, google “1970s fashion” and consider the poor kid who had to look at that stuff every time he left the house… or regarded himself in a mirror.

Today’s pen: Pelikan M600
Today’s ink: Lamy black

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Posted by Dirck on 2 May, 2019

 

Day What How Much Pen Ink
  • 29 April
  • 30 April
  • 1 May
  • 2 May
  • First draft of “Share My Pain.”
  • First draft of “Fourteen Nights of Day” (a working title).
  • 4 manuscript pages, because I ran out of story.
  • 16 manuscript pages.

 

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