Hello. Good morning. It’s Thursday, November 11th, 2021, the second Thursday of November this year, and it’s time for another edition of my weekly blog post. I won’t mention the fact that, had the feature continued, this would have been the occasion for an instance of “My Heroes Have Always Been Villains,” since I’m the only one who cares. Oops! I’ve mentioned it, now! Oh, well. If you’re interested in seeing what that was about, follow the link above.
There’s not that much new going on this week. The only newish thing is that, just before starting to write this post, I did a quick recording, trying to recapitulate some thoughts that I’d been thinking (sometimes out loud) on my way into the office. By recording I mean “voice recording”. I am considering trying to start/continue an idea I’ve had more than once, which is to do a regular “audio blog”* feature over at Iterations of Zero, which I’ll hopefully also turn into “videos” on my YouTube channel. I put that word in scare quotes because the visual portion is likely just to be my Iterations of Zero symbol; nothing is ever added to any thoughtful process by requiring people to look at my face.
The thoughts I had this morning concerned a method of figuring probabilities, which I had previously not thought of in this simple way, and so I had needed to do unnecessarily laborious figuring when and if it came up for me. Then I read a book that pointed out an easier way to do it and to think of it, and I realized I’d been making things much harder for myself than was necessary.
I would like to try to do regular, five-minute-long recordings of my random thoughts in the morning(s), and then perhaps accumulate them over the course of each week into something to be shared on IoZ. We’ll see if this comes to fruition, but I plan at least to share the thoughts from this morning (properly edited) on my other blog.
As for other matters, of course, the main project on which I continue to work is Outlaw’s Mind. As I said last week, I’ve reverted to type by reverting to typing the first draft, because I was getting joint pain in the base of my right thumb, and that was slowing me down. It’s also a fair pain to rewrite the stuff I’d written by hand into the computer—I only just caught up with that yesterday morning. Also, having considered it while typing it in, writing with pen on paper doesn’t seem to have improved my writing style in any appreciable way. I know that’s an unscientific evaluation, but there it is. The story goes well, and my ideas of what is to happen in it are adjusting—it’s expanding in some ways, contracting in others, and in general becoming a larger-scale story, since I’ve decided to allow it to be a novel.
This leads me to wonder how many of my numerous short story ideas would/will expand into something larger once I start writing them, if I ever do. Particularly in more recent works, as contrasted with things I wrote many years ago, my stories tend to become longish, hopefully in good ways, even when they are “short stories”, as anyone who has read Dr. Elessar’s Cabinet of Curiosities, or any of the isolated short stories, will know. Some of them, like “Ifowonco” and Hole for a Heart are borderline novellas, as is the title story from Welcome to Paradox City. And In the Shade, the last story in The Cabinet (and in fact the last complete story I have written thus far**) could probably count as a novella if it were published alone. I think it has nearly as many words as Of Mice and Men, though in all other senses there is little comparison, the latter being one of the finest things I’ve ever read. I was so moved by it that I read it twice in a row in one day, the first time I read it. I don’t think I’ve done that before or since with any other story.
I don’t have much else to discuss today. It’s either just after the beginning of daylight savings time or its just after the end of it for this year, however it’s reckoned, but that’s not really worth getting into much. I’m not a huge fan of the practice, though I relished the extra hour last weekend, and quite irrationally, as I always do. Of course, hours actually pass just as they would in any case, no matter how we label them, and none of us gain or lose them*** at a different rate just by fiddling with our clocks. To think that would be a bit like imagining that, by looking through a microscope, you can actually make miniscule structures physically bigger.
Humans have some peculiar ideas.
With that, I’ll wish all you humans—and any non-humans who might be reading—a good week, and encourage you to be kind to yourselves and to each other, and to remember, while it’s worth trying to figure out how to solve (or better yet, to avoid) problems, the notion of blame is probably almost always counterproductive.
*It could, I suppose, be considered a podcast, but that seems too highfalutin’ a term for what I do.
**For all we know, it could well be the last story I’ll ever complete, given the vicissitudes of fate, not to mention my own chronic depression and chronic pain and the like, which leave me at increased daily risk of death, even—apparently—from things like Covid-19 (at least according to the CDC website). I’ll admit to having been mildly disappointed that my run-in with the virus was not fatal and, given that I’m fully vaccinated and have already had the infection, my odds of being released by this particular disease are not high. Oh, well, sooner or later something will kill me. I only hope when it happens it’s not too inconvenient for anyone that I care about…though I’d be delighted (in principle) if it greatly inconvenienced any of quite a large chunk of humanity, since so many of them are irritating.
***Except for those who succumb to the increased rates of heart attacks and strokes and accidents and the like, which I’ve read are associated with the change in time both in the spring and the fall. I cannot vouch for how true those claims are, but the uptick in morbidity and mortality seems plausible.