My drug of choice is writing--writing, art, reading, inspiration, books, creativity, process, craft, blogging, grammar, linguistics, and did I mention writing?

Monday, November 30, 2015

Oh Sweet Routine! How I Have Missed Thee! (Personal Update)

Come here you big cuddly routine,
and give your ol' pal Chris a great big hug. 
It's been a rough month even among rough toddler-chasing months. Two vacations and Thanksgiving added on to some epic personal issues, which aren't helping the fact that I'm mood crashing, even though I'm likely overdue anyway.

I'm glad to get back into a routine even if right now it feels a little stiff and uncoordinated–like that first work out after a long break.

A lot of writers sneer at routine, and I don't think it's a terribly big coincidence that they're about 99% the same writers who have trouble writing. Even though there's a lot of variation in routine, the thing I'm always struck by is how hard most writers with names we'd recognize work to carve out time each and every day for the love of their lives.

For about the past year, I've been kind of scraping by. The Contrarian is in a particularly time intensive state (even more so than when he slept all the time last year), and getting a blog once a week that isn't absolutely jazz hands has been just about the far flung limit of my ability.

I don't have a lot of finger waving lessons writers can take from this save maybe one:

Look at my last year. I wrote every day, even if it was just a tortured couple of hours stolen while T.C. watched Daniel Tiger. I posted almost every day (except weekends recently). I still managed to get dozens of meaty articles up. And this is my treading water. This is my deplorable output. This is what I do when I'm feeling overwhelmed and don't have enough writing time.

Saturday, November 28, 2015

Christian Terrorism is a Story You Don't Hear

Even when a white male Christian shoots up a Planned Parenthood, shooting several cops, beyond social justice circles there won't be much of a major outcry against Christian terrorism. Some news might run pieces, but the backlash will be tremendous.

There won't be a critical examination of the toxic factors of white male culture. Harris, Maher, and Dawkins won't call Christians or white males savage, barbaric, or backwards. No one will say "hey, I'm talking about their 'suburban culture,' not their skin color, but something is making them violent by nature." Big tent atheists will not pontificate that there is something INHERENTLY more violent about Christianity that leads them to such deplorable acts. No one will demand that if there are any moderate Christians out there, they vociferously condemn the actions of their extremist label-sharers 24/7 for weeks (even though that still wouldn't be enough) or consider the slightest reticence tantamount to being glad it happened. (Even though there will be are Christians explicitly glad it happened.) White males won't find themselves followed by armed civilians–menacing them with assault rifles–as they go to their churches. No one will consider all Christians too dangerous to be allowed refuge in the country. No one will say that if white Christians don't want to be treated like criminals, they should stop acting like criminals. (Because no one will treat them like criminals.) No one will talk about white on white crime as the real epidemic. No one will say they just hate us and theirs is the real bigotry. No one will say that it's only a matter of time before a white Christian male reveals his true colors and does something violent. People wearing crucifixes or other accoutrement of Christendom will not be eyed with suspicion. No one will say they just get nervous around Christians and excuse it with "I'm not a bigot or anything, but hey, that's just reality." No one will suggest that we bomb Christian cities to glass or that we deport all Christians back to where they came from (even if their immigration was a few generations back). We will not have a national conversation, backed by a major political frontrunner about establishing a national registry to track Christians.

Nope. No double standards in our narratives here. Move along.

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Turkey Sandwich Mailbox Coming

Did I say no post on Friday?

Let's switch that up.

I'll do T.G. prep today (including watching the 2 year old while people who can actually cook get busy in the kitchen) and then on Friday when everyone is enjoying their Turkey sandwiches, I'll put up the mailbox I've got going for this week.

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Best Dystopia (Semifinal Round 2)

What is the best Dystopia in fiction?   

Our November poll goes on. With fifteen nominations, we had to do some semifinal polls to find out which dystopias will be going on to the final round.

Our second semifinal poll results will go up next Wednesday (as well as the final poll).  That means that everyone who votes early will get to vote "often" since Polldaddy can only store the IP of your voting location for one week.

Everyone will get four votes (3). The top four names will go on to the finals. Before you simply vote for your favorite four, consider that, as there is no ranking of those four votes; each vote beyond one dilutes the power of your choices a little more. So if you have a genuine favorite–or pair of favorites–it's better to use as few votes as possible.

The poll itself is on the left side, at the bottom of the side menus.

Best Dystopia (Semifinal 1 Results)

This turned out to be a quiet poll, with fewer than 60 votes. But it's possible that putting up the call to vote on a Sunday and not really hitting it on social media was more to blame than any lack of interest.

The top four books will be going on to the final round.  Also stay tuned as the second semifinal poll will be up later today.

The Stand–S. King
Fahrenheit 451–R. Bradbury
Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep–P.K. Dick
The Girl With All the Gifts–M. Carey