Today’s writing tools and companions

While I am not overly fond of handwritten notes and so on, as typing has always been the far more effective method for me, I’m trying to see if using a means of writing that lacks internet access will help or hinder my usual productivity (or lack of productivity, as it seems to be at times).

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The notebooks and pen. Not pictured: access to millions of pictures featuring cats doing silly things.

And, of course, I need some company…which is where these come into play, I guess.

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Confession: I may have just gotten bored and picture-happy.

Without further delay, I’m off to hopeful productivity. Ignoring, of course, that I have just been chosen as Marceline’s snoozing spot. Happy writing, folks. Try to stay warm.

One Hundred Days of Blogging – Day Thirty-One

There never seems to be a dull moment on my days off anymore. I’m not saying that’s a good thing or a bad thing so much as stating it as a fact. I woke up far earlier than I wanted, couldn’t get back to sleep, and so I got to work on writing notes for my latest project. A headache started to creep in. I decided to get some WoW time in before taking a nap and just relaxing a little.

And then, after my nap (which my headache endured, sadly), I got my first-ever jury duty summons. The fun plot-twist is I got it for Pittsburgh. I’ve tried to change my voter registration twice now, with a third piece of mail arriving recently to say my address may not be up-to-date. I’ve not been as good about my driver’s license, I’m afraid. Needless to say, I’m sure it’ll be loads of fun trying to make it so I won’t be driving a four-hour round-trip.

Moving on to things more interesting, though… Continue reading

One Hundred Days of Blogging – Day Twenty-Seven

My laptop returned home today, and the actual problems were far worse than initially thought. Instead of my graphics card being dead, it was apparently a bad motherboard and hard drive disk. The BestBuy employee asked if I had an unexpected power outage or something, but it was just my laptop very suddenly and violently shitting the bed. Yikes.

Thanatos has been renamed Wheatley because 1) it better fits the Portal and Portal 2 themed names I have for my Surface 2 (Aperture Surface) and my desktop (GLADESKTOP) and 2) it’s a more fitting name given how derp my laptop has been so soon. I’m not looking forward to resurrecting all of the files from my external hard drive, and I’m fairly certain I lost a couple short stories and other projects forever. Like my forever-backburnered first episode of the Misadventures in Podcasting podcast.

As a quick aside: it’s very difficult to type when a small kitten keeps hopping onto the couch and dancing across my laptop keyboard. She wandered back into the living room just as I was typing that and did it again. Precious little bundle of mischief.

Anyway, time to get moving on this. I’ve got my standard Monday headache, like clockwork. Continue reading

One Hundred Days of Blogging – Day Twenty-Three

Before I even start with today’s post, I need to mention a gem I forgot last night. That whole post about my workstation, happy as I am to have the desk and desktop set up, was written on my phone. If you’re feeling an overwhelming urge to roll your eyes about now, that’s probably a natural response to such a statement and it should be embraced. Go on. Roll them like someone just told a really awful joke.

This post is going to follow my writing and creative efforts of the day, with some degree of detail (with some omitted because I don’t want to bore anyone to death). That way I can focus on this, but focus more on the proofreading, writing, and submissions I need to get done today, as well as get a little cleaning done in preparation of Marceline (Or maybe Meowrceline? No, that’s just awful.) being brought home. In case I failed to mention it explicitly: there will soon be three cats wandering my house, which means the cats will outnumber humans. If I go missing for a great length of time, assume I’ve expired and the cats have made a meal of me.

Veering back on topic and away from whatever dark place that joke went, this post will also provide a great way for me to scold myself later for not being able to stay on task for more than ten minutes at a time (that’s a really generous estimate). Typed that last sentence while thinking how I could really benefit from a shower and some breakfast about now.

Prepare to be bored, probably. Or amused. Maybe a mix of those two things. Boredmused? Whatever. Continue reading

One Hundred Days of Blogging – Day Nineteen

Just for funsies, and because the computer is in use, I’m hastening the onset of carpal tunnel a bit by typing this on my phone. There will be typos. Not even prepared to read this on another device because it will probably make my soul hurt.

Right.

So there were some crazy-intense thunderstorms last night. The kind that produce lightning as bright as momentary flashes of daylight and thunder rumbles that shake a person to their bones. I love a good summer storm, perhaps more than most, but there were a few moments where I wondered if there were any smoking craters in the yard from some of those lightning strikes.

Anyway, to the real post topic!

Continue reading

Recent short story shenanigans, and other news

Or “What I’ve been up to while I’m not working and sleeping, other than swearing and spending money.”

I really wanted to make this post from my Surface 2, which is a glorious piece of technology that I’ve become quite attached to already. Spoilers: I’ve only taken five pictures with it, and they’re all of my girlfriend and our cats. I live on the wilder side of life. However, the browser of choice on the Surface is (surprise) Internet Explorer. My love of updating my WordPress page clashed with my overwhelming dislike of IE (I accidentally opened it on my laptop recently and it had something about how I should use the best browser for Windows 8; I’m using Chrome, by the way). It did, however, come with a free copy of Office on it, and that’s a damn powerful selling point for me. Years and years of using Microsoft Word have transformed it into my word processor of choice, and I honestly don’t think I could go with anything else (yes, I realize there is plenty of other software out there that’s practically identical to Word in form and function; don’t ruin this for me). I’ve actually been writing on my Surface (using Word), saving it to my cloud storage, and then retrieving it on my laptop for when I send it off for proofreading and the likes. I didn’t mean to turn this into a shameless plug for the Microsoft Surface tablet, but I’m kind of okay that it happened that way. PS: if any kindly folks at Microsoft happen upon this and think, “You know what we like? Publicity and nice things about our products,” and you’re feeling generous, I’m not saying I’d accept a free Surface 3 Pro, but I’m also saying if one showed up in the mail that I wouldn’t reject it by any means.

Moving along.

My brain’s been fixated on normal situations with supernatural/abnormal things dropped into them. Think imaginary friends who can be heard by people other than the individual who imagined them into existence. That sort of thing. It started innocent enough with one short story idea on a rainy, dreary day, and branched off into two ideas. Those two ideas became three ideas, and then a forth one followed while I was at work today. Since I have tomorrow off, the plan is to write the rest of each of those drafts and send them off for proofreading. I’m not sharing those here, though. I don’t mean that in the I-won’t-share-my-toys-with-you-guys way so much as the I-want-to-try-getting-things-published way. Fingers, toes, and other appendages crossed there (if you’re a Lovecraftian horror, take a moment and cross some of your tendrils, tentacles, and other slimy, soul-maiming limbs for me, please; I’m a big supporter of your works, and would appreciate some reciprocity).

The other news: I applied to Screen Robot to be a contributing writer. They liked what they saw of my work and added me on. Now I’m just waiting to hear back before I start writing for them on an irregular basis. I kid, of course. We all know I’m super responsible and great at keeping a schedule. Stop laughing at that. It’s not funny, damn it.

The other other news that happened just today was a brainstorm of sorts while I was driving to an appointment. It’s also something I’ll probably share here, unless it turns out to be awful. I decided it would be fun to write a series of short stories (not necessarily interrelated or anything) around a CD. I’ve been listening to Lindsey Stirling’s new CD, Shatter Me, like it’s my second job. Brilliant, wonderful stuff. Apart from being great travel music, it’s also really easy to get into it and picture worlds forming out of the music notes. We’ll see how this pans out.

Mostly, though, I’ve hit a wall with all of my other projects, I’m still waiting to hear if “Death at Teatime” has been accepted or not (I’m willing to go out on a limb and guess no, but that’s my inner Negative Nancy being a jagoff again).

What sort of inspiration has sneaked up on, or violently struck, any of you lately?

A rather sad changing of the guard

Or “I have a dozen other things to be doing, but this is a mental health day and I’m making my way through it on my own damn terms.”

Yesterday was not a particularly good day for me, and I’ll spare the details because this is where I write about writing, and sometimes other artsy things that catch my eye. Maybe other odds and ends here and there. I will say that I am woefully behind where I’d like to be with Warpt Factor, and I largely blame the dreary gloom that’s settled in both in terms of weather and my moods. I apologize for that much because it’s been fun to write, and I certainly hope it’s been fun to read so far.

My Dell Studio laptop, named Satellite 5 (because Doctor Who, of course), blue-screened on me a couple times recently. Upon rebooting my nearly four-year-old laptop, it gave a different reason for the fatal errors, but none of them were particularly good or easily fixable. This is all particularly upsetting because Satellite 5 has been my trusty companion through much of my most difficult academic writing, as well as some of the hardest, best work I’ve done on my fiction. It’s what I used to make many–most, in fact–of the posts on Misadventures In Fiction, and it’s the computer from which this site was started. Needless to say, it’s with a heavy heart that I’ve decided it’s time to give Satellite 5 some much-needed rest. It’ll certainly see use, still, but not so much with its nearly useless battery, its replaced charger, and so on. Continue reading