Sunday, February 9, 2020

Episode 50: On Being Nuked.

Wow, I managed to make it to the big 50 for posts! Three cheers and a Tasmanian Devil for me!

As most of you probably know at this point, I seriously detest being censored. On any kind of level. On any kind of medium. Real world and Cyber world.

I don't mind censoring myself when the situation calls for it, like at work where we have an open floor plan and sound carries quite a bit, or on my blog when people can take certain offense to certain concepts/phrases/words that I may blog about.

But I do loathe being censored when the situation 100% doesn't call for it.

Case in point: I belong to a couple of writers groups on Facebook, and each one has very sensible rules that you must follow in order to play in the very large sandbox. Without exception, I follow all the rules to the best of my ability and everything becomes just fine and ducky.

The other day, I finally decided to use one of the Amazon gift cards that was given to me last Christmas. There was one book that I wanted to purchase, simply because I follow the writer's podcast. However, all he has out is a hardcover version, and as you undoubtedly know, hardcover is where publishers make their M-O-N-E-Y (in this case, $24.99).

Now as a rule of thumb, I'm not a big fan of purchasing hardcovers unless they become deeply discounted. My preference is to purchase softcover. So I went to one of my writer's groups and asked for some suggestions from those writer's current and back catalog, with the only restriction being that they had to be stand-alones.

I get a couple of responses on the post, but when I go to FB to check it out, I found it to be nuked to smithereenies. Naturally annoyed about this, I asked the admin who nuked it (this group has about one dozen or so admins) why they nuked it. They responded by saying because I was asking for people for suggestions of their own work, that it was a book promo, and thus shouldn't be posted until the appropriate day for it came about.

I said it wasn't a promo post, since i was asking folks for suggestions for the simple reason of wanting to throw some financial love their way. However, my answer fell on deaf ears, since the admin had already made their mind up that it wasn't going to be restored, so ultimately, with discretion being the better part of getting ejected, I dropped the matter with the kind of response you would give to a superior politely letting them know that they aren't smart.

I'm still very annoyed over this gross misinterpretation of the rules, so I'm making myself persona-non-grata from that group for awhile, so that I can calm down enough to participate w/o becoming overly nasty.

Sometimes, you just can't win if you do play.

{c} 2020 by G.B. Miller. All Rights Reserved

Wednesday, February 5, 2020

Insecure Writers Support Group: Episode Lucky #13

Boy to the howdy and welcome to I Have Stories! I am your most awesome host G.B. Miller, and for today's monthly installment, we feature the optional question of the month as our contribution to the IWSG blog hop.

Has a single photo or work of art ever inspired a story? What was it and did you finish it?

To a certain degree, yes. Not so much as a photo or work of art, but actual non-living objects have inspired me.

Waaaaaaaaaaaaaay back in the early part of this century (early 00's) I was an extremely motivated writer. Didn't get published much, but got into a serious flash fiction writing groove. How serious? Serious enough to create a now closed short story blog entitled Flashing Georgie's Shorts as a home for my output.

I say roughly 90% of the short stories were inspired by a turn of a word, phrase or concept (concrete or otherwise), with the remaining 10% were inspired by inanimate objects. One such story featured a conversation between two stop signs that were perched on opposite corners of a street.

Still another was inspired by the city that I currently work in, sort of a slice of life snippet. Another was inspired by a train, and yet another by the great outdoors.

While I did write the majority of my stories to completion, only two ever got commercially published. And I'm definitely proud of that fact.

So to sum it up, while all of my stories have had various and intriguing backgrounds for inspiration, very few of them came about due to either a photo or a work of art. But, that is the beauty of having a creative mind, in that you can draw inspiration from anything, whether animal, vegetable or mineral, audio or video, and write a fascinating piece of fiction.

{c} 2020 by G.B. Miller. All Rights Reserved

Sunday, February 2, 2020

Episode #49: (Sort of) Living The Life

Boy to the howdy and welcome to the skewered world of G.B. Miller, where all is not what it should be, and what should be is not we had expected it to be.

My month of January has been pretty much like that picture of Little Nemo there: Sushied and oh-so-too-many-calories.

Things have slowly been stabilizing at work, so I'm starting to feel more comfortably in turning my thoughts back to writing.  Or to be more specific, blogging.

I've slowly been exploring my new Chrome notebook, and I've been pleasantly surprised on how easy it's been to work with. Haven't done much exploring with Google docs yet, but I have discovered that so far as I can tell, I can't get any of my flash drives to work on the computer yet. I'll have to spend some time meandering through the help forums to see what I can come up with for viable workarounds.

But, back to the writing aspect of life.

Been goofing on FB in small short spurts (about 20 minutes in length), since that's about as much as I can tolerate there, mostly by writing short puffy posts to work my back into the groove.

For example, been going through a brutal allergy attack for the past week or so (wife got an early b'day present of Mr. Cuddles, rabbit), and on Monday, went to the ER to get things temporarily squared away. So yesterday, I wrote this funny little quip about my visit.

How to murder a Monday.
1) Call out sick due to allergies beating your candy-ass into the ground. 
2) Have your candy-ass become progressively worse until it's peanut brittle. 
3) Have said brittle puff itself up and say, "Yo! To the den of iniquity you need to go and get thyself healed!" 
4) With trepidation, went to said den of iniquity {aka Hospital of Central Connecticut} and spent a lovely 3 hours at the ER to get the drugs needed to snuff out the shortness of breath, the Grand Coulee Dam of mucus in the head and the Thor hammer-style cough that was destroying my rib cage. 
And no, we won't finish up with The Boomtown Rats. Instead, we leave you with "Forever Afternoon (Tuesday?)"

Managed to work in a few pop culture/musical/American history references and got a few comments about it. And yes, after a three hour visit, we came home with enough pharmaceuticals to hold us over until we can set up an appoint with an allergist.

Sometimes to make any kind of progress, you have to take a couple of baby steps.

{c} 2020 by G.B. Miller. All Rights Reserved

Wednesday, January 8, 2020

Insecure Writers Support Group: Episode the 12th

Good day to one and all and a beefy boy howdy to those who need it the most on hump day, and welcome to the skewered literary world of G.B. Miller, where something old more often than not, put out to pasture long before before it's overdue.

Things are still seriously kablooie in my world (work and non-family related headaches specifically), but the need to continue participating in the IWSG blog hop has forced me to de-cloak for the present.

Radio silence is currently the norm as it applies to my writing these days. This even includes the two writing groups that I'm currently a member of on Facebook.

I originally was going to use the alternate question of the month for the topic of choice, but because that has the potential to reopen a scab that has pretty much healed at this point, another topic of choice is needed.

Enter "radio silence".

I always thought that the phrase "radio silence" was a cool group of words to use in any given situation you can come across. Desperately trying to get a grip on the octopus that's known as your job? Apply radio silence. Annoyed as all hell with someone and knowing that to open mouth would make things 10 times worse? Apply radio silence. Wanting to avoid people due to social anxiety? Apply radio silence.

You get the basic idea.

Well, this concept is now being applied to my writing. With so much going right now with work etc., something had to be put onto the back burner, and that something was my writing. I haven't talked about my writing beyond the current stuff that people asked me about. I haven't done any writing since early December due to the aforementioned issues (which includes this nifty thing). I can actually hear my current project rapping gently on my chamber doors, but no reply is given by me to it.

Nothing but radio silence. I don't dwell on my writing project beyond looking at the very old computer that it's currently being writing on and making sure that I still remember the plot lines and where I want to go with it. Once I remember, I turn my attention to other things.

When life is too much noisy shiny crap, sometimes you just have to go radio silent in order to get a grip on things again. Even if it means not attacking the keyboard in order to create the five basic grammar concepts of language and string sentences and paragraphs together for an extended of time. Personally, I'm not happy doing this, but until I can get that square peg back into that square hole again, my writing will be on the back burner, patiently waiting for me to get that square peg back into that square hole.

{c} 2020 by G.B. Miller. All Rights Reserved