Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Look, A Book!

Watership DownWatership Down by Richard Adams

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I have often heard that Richard Adams' Watership Down is a book which a number of people have read in school; though I did not . . . and in fact, I've never even heard of this book until my mid-twenties when someone mentioned the movie adapted from the book. After having finally read it, there is definitely a classic literary feel. Now, I am a fan of xenofiction (anthropomorphic fiction), but this book definitely feels more at home in a high school english class or university literature course as opposed to just being another book on the shelves of a sci-fi/fantasy fan's collection.

That doesn't mean that I didn't like the book. In fact, I was quite fond of the story and the characters, but it was a book not quite suitable for the mood I was a seeking. I was hoping for something a little more adventurous and anthropomorphic. I knew before reading the book that that was most likely not going to be the case, and instead I fault myself for having higher expectations, but nevertheless reading this book made me feel like it was an english class all over again, trying to pin-point figurative versus literal meanings, symbolism and other various thematic elements. But all the same, I enjoyed the book and I am glad to have finally read it after all these years. It was a cozy little read.

Good Book, Good Read.

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Sunday, May 29, 2011

Satanic Teddy Bear: Immoral Morals and Other Terrible Tales

So, what's with that little evil teddy bear?  It's a little project of mine that I have been working on for quite some time.  The idea first came to me years ago, but within these past few months I've been giving the project a more serious approach . . . though to what seriousness I do not quite know.  It's merely a test run for possible future projects.  Specifically, I have it in mind to try my hand at a zine for another project, but before I begin to even attempt to muck up that one I figured it might be best to give it a test run on something a little less serious.  In other words, this is all just an experiment.  I hope to have it posted up fairly soon.  In the mean time, I plan to post bits and pieces of it for viewing pleasure . . . enjoy!

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Random Drawings

Crazy Good Time

Tail of a Thief

Here are few drawings I made recently.  Crazy Good Time was just an experiment in free-style gone horribly awry which led to a more macabre vision.  Tail of a Thief was just a little practice in shading (which didn't turn out as clear as I had hoped with the scanner) and portrays a little image I've had in my head quite some time concerning a story/novel I had been working on at one point in time.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

When Writing Becomes A Waste of Time

Is it possible? Can writing be a waste of time? Ultimately, the answer is no. Writing is always a practice in craft. Everything from journal entries to blog posts to poems to stories to song lyrics . . . sure, they may be stupid from time to time, silly, or maybe even ways to kill time, but any form of writing could never be considered a waste of time.

I am inclined to disagree. While I do admit that any form of writing is indeed a practice in the craft and therefore worth something, I am still of the opinion that sometimes a story or a poem is just completely and utterly hopeless. I am of course talking about myself here, and I am referring to a short story I have been struggling with for years. I recently commented about this particular piece in a few posts back (entitled When Revision Becomes Re-Imagine). At the end of said post I was contemplating the effort I made in trying to finalize this story which has bothered me so, and I had asked myself the very same question I am asking here: can writing be a waste of time? But a month or so ago I was hopeful that my new version of a sci-fi pseudo-drama set aboard a spacecraft was complete and successful . . . but I was wrong.

I recently read the latest version of the story (some 9,000+ words . . . far too long for general zine publication) and I am now of the opinion that said story may just have to remain one of those pieces that was purely an exercise in practice. There are many stories in my catologue that fit this bill (most of which were written during my college years), but as I am now actively seeking publication (or rather, saying that I am) I am rather smitten that I have wasted so much time on a story that I know for a fact will never see publication. I mean, it needs edited; and I'm not speaking of the basics here (spelling, word choice, sentence structure -- these are all a given in any editing process); rather, the plot, sub-plot, climax, characters, flow, et cetera, all need revision. And this is what I have been struggling with for years. I do believe that this latest rendition of the story is number seven. And throughout it all, I have both loved the idea and hated the outcome. Characters have been erased, new characters introduced, scenes completely rearranged, new ideas expressed, and when I read the latest effort I am always annoyed. I just can't seem to tell the story the way I originally imagined it. And I know that it sucks! Who would want to read my story when I myself don't even like it? And so, I have come to the conclusion that I cannot waste anymore time. It's time to pack it up and move on. Maybe one day in the future I will take another stab at it . . . maybe when I am suffering from a case of writer's block. But for now, the story is going to be packed away into a box full of stories showcasing a practice in crap . . . I mean craft.

The Satanic Teddy Bear

Whew . . . that was rather difficult to make.

But what is it?

All shall be explained with time . . . until then, enjoy.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Meepers Creepers Go VaroooBOOM!

The Story . . .

Thursday. 10:19 pm. 56 degrees.  Scattered showers -- ending a week-long torrential rainfall. Warning: flash flooding in various areas; road conditions: wet.  Still a beautiful night. Not too cold, not too warm. The past hour saw a passing rain cloud which brought a cool breeze to the warm spring air. It's the type of night in which C___ considers leaving work early (as there's no work to be done) and going home to spend a comfortable evening with a cigar and a glass of wine, hopefully ending the night within the comfortable embrace of his girlfriend's arms -- who, as of late, has witnessed an embrace of fate all her own. It doesn't take much dileberation valuing a comfortable night over a few hours of pay for no work.  Ergo, C___ logs of his station, packs up his things, says goodbye to one or two other employees -- who are weighing their own pros and cons for a mere few hours of pay for no work -- and leaves. With a perk smile upon his face he waves goodbye to the front-desk security guard. Then he strides out into the cool night and prepares to head home.

It's a quick drive, no more than 30 - 35 minutes (tops), and before he sets out he tosses on a classic album (Immortal - Sons of Northern Darkness) and drives off. The roads are wet, a few slick-spots seem possible, but overall it's a relatively easy commute. Not too many cars on the road. A few other drivers, most likely retiring for the evening after a day of work or going home after a relaxing evening with friends. C___ can't help but notice the soaring gas prices these days, but he smiles. The expense of gas is of little to no concern for him. After all, he recently upgraded from having no car -- which briefly followed an average run with a piece of s___ car -- to what is now a fuel-efficient car. A 2008 Honda Fit which gets 30-34 miles to the gallon (city-highway) and rides as smooth as BOOM!

From the other lane: a smack, a pop. The other driver failing to observe the rules of the road attempts a left hand turn from the opposing direction. Unknowingly, unintentionally, unintelligently, she accidentally failed to yield and crossed C___'s lane. The collision isn't grave . . . thankfully. Everyone is fine. A little shaken and nervous, but no loss of limbs. Both parties step out, share a cigarette (though only in act), and patiently wait for the police to show up and begin taking notes before issuing citations and permitting them all to leave the scene.

It doesn't take long. Not long at all. The police arrived . . . promptly. And did their thing . . . promptly. And just as his night had began, C___ was back in his car enjoying the evening; or rather, enjoying it the best that he could with a constant RaaaTLinG from the engine while the hazard-lights repetitiously blink -- alerting the other drivers that this particular individual is driving f___ing slow for a reason! Said reason being, of course, that it's a nice night and one should not waste one second of it.

He does not fret. Not one bit. What has happened, happened. He could cry. He could complain. Or he could, instead, continue dreaming about a fine cigar, a fine glass of wine and a fine woman. So he drives. And he smiles. And he rolls the window down, enjoying the cool breeze on the warm spring air while simultaneously airing out the slight odor of melting rubber coming from an over-heating engine.

The Facts . . .

As of late the fates have saw fit to deliver onto me motor-vehicular hardships. Without all the mundane details (which really do nothing other than seek sympathy), the facts are that my new car seems prone to mishaps. What was once affectionally nicknamed Meepers Creepers is now undergoing a revision (in both name as well as body). I'm thinking of naming her The Curse. I mean, seriously . . . just look! 

So, the collision . . .
A month or so ago someone dinged my read drver-side door (presumably with their car door) . . .

To top it all off, someone spit on my car (presumably) . . .