Friday, January 14, 2011

100 Words: "A Sister's Revenge"

The inimitable Velvet Verbosity, who is as close to invincible as mortal beings can hope to be, has issued another 100 Word Challenge to word nerds far and wide. This week's word is "Invicible", and my story is called "A Sister's Revenge"

Krista was always first, she thought, looking at her older sister's face grow red and contort with effort. The first to mature, the first to have a boyfriend, the first to marry, now the first to produce the grandchild their mother wouldn't admit to coveting. Krista was the prow on the front of the family ship- indestructible and perfect. She both loved and hated that about her- nothing she did would be anything but a reflection, because Krista was first.

The doctors told Krista to push, and she swore back at them.

Not so invincible now, she thought.

Friday Flash- "Playground Mom"

This week's flash is called "Loose Connections", and my entry, "Playground Mom", is here

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Everyone Makes Fun Of Me, But I Don't Care

I could watch this commercial all day.

Le Livre? C'est fini. (The Book? It Is Finished.)

My book, called "Everybody Loves You Now", a novel set in the early 1990s of a guitar playing grad student who falls in love with someone he probably shouldn't, is, as of the present moment, available for purchase. You can see the links on the sidebar. At this very moment, Smashwords has it for $1.00, for online reading and non Kindle e book readers, and Createspace's e store has the paperback for $15.00. Amazon will have it soon, and the Kindle version is also coming soon. (Amazon, while being perfectly willing to sell whatever you have to upload to them, apparently wants to review your work, I assume to avoid copyright and other legal concerns.) To be perfectly honest, you  might want to wait for those, because Amazon's shipping, I am told, is way more reasonable than Createspace's, and the Kindle version will be $5.00, which is also way more reasonable than $15.00 plus shipping.

The book, as I say, is a love story. I have been writing it, from various angles and with various approaches, for more than a decade- arguably, since high school, which is distressingly more than two decades ago. It was written, first word to last, during November as part of National Novel Writing Month, and has been edited and copyread for all of December. Hopefully, all errors have been expunged- however, I am confident, given the nature of my mind and of Murphy's Law, a few probably still slipped through.

I don't expect anyone to buy it- that is, I won't be disappointed if anyone reading this can't afford it, or doesn't feel like it, or whatever. We can't buy everything, despite my efforts to do so. It may not be your cup of tea. It may not be any good- I don't know. I'm reminded of Dave Barry's dictum that after a while, you are so sick of your own book that it's like a repulsive insect that everyone keeps insisting that you pet. (Fair warning- there are adult scenes in the book, though hardly explicit ones. I can't imagine anyone reading my blog is easily offended, however.)

But it's done- it's out there in the world, and out of my head. If you do buy it, bless you and thank you. I hope you like it. Feel free to give me feedback, here or via email. If you don't, I'm sure you will be in the vast majority. I assure you I am not getting rich on this project- if everyone who's ever looked at my blog buys a copy, I may be able to afford an IPad. But I'm not exactly heading down to my BMW dealership, if you catch my drift.

Sunday, January 09, 2011

Words Fail Us All

By now, everyone has heard about the horrible, tragic events in Arizona involving multiple shootings involving a Congresswoman, a Federal judge, and a 9 year old girl, among others, in front of a grocery store. Twitter and Facebook are all abuzz, some decrying harsh rhetoric, others complaining about "politicizing" a human tragedy. There are bucketloads of blame, of course, to hand out here- to the shooter, of course, most of all,  and to any comrades or fellow travelers who encouraged or flamed his delusions, and to the society that failed a mentally ill person and sold him a gun.

I am a free speech absolutist. I do not believe horrible, violent imagery should be banned, or censored, or kept off the public airwaves and bitstreams by any law or governmental decree. Longtime readers of this space will remember that I am prone to tortured metaphors, absurd suggestions, and long, run on sentences that carry on and on with no potential ending in sight. Like that one. I don't think I've ever advocated violence in this space, but honestly? I may have. If I did, I shouldn't have.

There are hundreds of thousands of words in the English language. If you oppose someone else's political views, vote against them. Take to the airwaves and the bitstreams- it's a free Internet- and make your case. Suggest their views are misguided, poorly thought out, with disastrous potential consequences. Be insulting, if that's what you feel you need to do- call them names, question their parentage, suggest they are dim bulbs who have trouble buttoning their shirts in the morning.

But, in the name of all that is good and decent, stop using violence. Stop suggesting it, stop appealing to it, stop making allusions to it. Just stop. Not because you have to, not because you're going to go to jail if you don't, not because I say so. Stop because you're ashamed of it. Stop because you don't want this to ever happen again.

"Violence, or the threat of violence, has no place in our Democracy, and I apologize for and repudiate any act or any thing in my past that may have even inadvertently encouraged violence. Because for whatever else each of us may be, we all are Americans."