Well, it’s Thursday morning again and time for a new blog post.
This time it really is Thursday morning. Last week, I somehow got it into my head that it was Thursday when it was, in fact, Wednesday, and I wrote and published my weekly blog post accordingly. This was even though, at work that day, I did all the usual things that I do on Wednesdays, but don’t do on Thursdays. It was a truly strange example of the compartmentalization of a misapprehension, and it troubled me quite a lot. When I woke up on Thursday morning, realizing that it actually was Thursday, and that the day before I had put out my blog post on the “wrong” day, I found it strange and depressing.
I don’t really know why it bothered me so much. It’s not as though there are set rules for doing these things, and I don’t know that I have a large enough number of regular readers for them to be confused about the fact that my blog had come out a day early—or if there were people looking for the new blog post on Thursday who missed it because it had already come out the day before.
You can comment if this happened to you. I’d be interested to learn about it.
On that same day I also put out a blog post on “Iterations of Zero.” Maybe that was what pushed me unconsciously to write blog posts that day, because it was on a subject (turn signals, and the frequent failure of drivers to use them) that persistently irritates me. If you want to get an idea of the intensity of my concern for that issue, you can read the blog post here, but the very fact that the title contains a (censored) bit of profanity, and the opening line of the post has that same expletive fully spelled out, should give you some idea of how much it angers me.
One unrelated but annoying thing happened with respect to that blog post, and this is the second time that this exact error has occurred: In the first posting of the blog entry, I dropped the “r” from the word “your,” in the title, making it come across as though I were trying to sound strangely (and poorly) idiomatic. This was not my intention, and I corrected the error immediately, and updated the post. The problem should have thus been solved, but unfortunately, it seems that the sharing buttons for blogs, when they are shared on Facebook and similar venues, only invoke the version that was first shared. So, even though the title has been corrected on the posting itself, which you’ll see if you read it, nevertheless, on Facebook (and, I think, on Twitter), it keeps showing up as “Use you f*cking turn signals,” and—to my eye, at least—makes me look like a f*cking idiot.
This is not such an unusual experience for me, thankfully, so although I don’t like it, I can deal with it. Nevertheless, I want to disabuse everyone out there of the notion that it was some stupid, failed attempt at using “cool” language. It was not. It was an entirely different kind of stupid, one with which I am far more comfortable.
I would dearly like to promote that post and get it spread around, because I think its message is important, but I find the notion of advertising a post that looks like it has a typo in the title intolerably galling. I really do need to be more careful about these things.
Before moving on to other matters, I will say that one reason I was distressed at finding that I’d gotten my days wrong is that Wednesday morning is supposed to be a morning for writing new fiction, and Thursday is the only day that I give myself an out from it. I’m a creature of habit about some things, occasionally bordering on obsessive-compulsive. It’s bad enough when my schedule changes because of external events. For it to happen because of some weird misfiring of my own synapses is a bit like discovering that one has deliberately poisoned one’s own tea. I did make it up for myself, though, by writing like a madman the following day; I got more than five pages written in the space of time that would normally have produced three. Maybe the mental tension was beneficial for the production of a horror novel.
On other matters, I am inching ever closer to the release of “I for one welcome our new computer overlords,” but it’s going slowly, because I’m trying not to take any time and energy away from new writing. This is part of a pattern I had intended to use going forward: Never stop writing new things, even while editing/rewriting my previous works to prepare for publication, but instead do the editing and rewriting, as well as other bits of preparation, at other times, later in the day. This may not be a workable plan, unless I can carve out set times for doing so, as I do for my writing. I’m sure that there is many a wasted moment in my days that could be so repurposed, but the mental energy for it may or may not be readily accessible. If I were writing “full time” I suppose it would be much easier, but I do have to give an annoying amount of my will to making a living. I’m good at shifting mental gears while in transit, but I have my limits, and it’s hard to believe that I’m going to get a lot of editing done during lunch break.
We at Chronic Publications have come up with what looks like a good cover design for “Ifowonco,” and I like it a lot…though it is slightly jokey, as is the title itself, and the story isn’t jokey at all. Maybe the title and cover will serve as armor against what are some rather dark moments in the tale. I’m not going to change the title, though, and I’m certainly not going to change the story. I really like it, even after rereading it over and over again as part of the editing process.
We’ve also produced a sort of concept draft of a cover for “Hole for a Heart,” which has gotten good reviews from the few who have seen it. I had been planning to release my short stories on Kindle in the order in which they had been written, which would mean “Prometheus and Chiron” should follow “Ifowonco,” but that plan may change, since we have a design concept for the cover of “Hole for a Heart,” and don’t really have one for “Prometheus and Chrion.”
We are slightly struggling with the “blurb” for “Ifowonco,” because it’s a story with a few red herrings and surprises, but describing the story enough to make it interesting for potential readers might accidentally produce some spoilers. This is far from an insurmountable problem, but it’s important. If any of you reading this, who have read the story here on the blog, have any suggestions, I’d be delighted to read them, and would certainly give you full credit if even an altered version of your suggestion is used. This is the house of ideas, and ideas deserve to be credited. (In that vein: I got the term “house of ideas” from a comic book, where it was spoken by the illustrated version of none other than the great Stan Lee, though I’m not sure if he ever said it in real life.)
Okay, well this posting has gone on longer than I expected it to do, but I guess that means that I had plenty of things to say. I was considering posting a version of the covers described above, for your perusal and possible feedback, but my forgetfulness decided the matter: I neglected to forward the graphics files to myself so that I could include them. I’m afraid you’ll just have to wait.
In the meantime, I hope you’re all well and thriving, despite the stress that often attends the major holiday season (I know that it’s stressful and often deeply depressing for me, and I’m pretty sure I’m not alone in this). Do be good to yourselves, even while you’re going mad trying to figure out which gifts and how many to get for those you love. The solstice approaches, when the days become longer again at last, great nature’s other, annual, second course. I hope none of you are ever truly in a situation where things can only get better (because that would mean that things are maximally bad), but it is true that, on December 21st, daylight can only get longer. (Barring some dreadful and catastrophic change in the tilt of the Earth’s axis. Which might be an interesting idea for a story.)