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Everything posted by EClayRowe

  1. Boo from Monsters Incorporated. Sorry, couldn't link.
  2. Read out the Lebanon Public Library before I was ten and inherited my cousin's library when he went to Vietnam. A paperback was half my milk money for the week. The best Christmas present ever was a year's subscription to Galaxy. Late Silver Age to the beginning of the Clarion era.
  3. Hootsuite and Buffer are apps that let you manage social media from your phone. You can set up social media accounts separate from personal accounts and invite your contacts in your personal accounts to follow you on those accounts with the click of a button. There's lists of people who will cross-link if you set up a group, like my 'Snot Rocket Science Club on Facebook. (Joiners are better than lurkers!) Spend a day with a tech- savvy friend or take a course at your local library. It's not rocket science. And if it was, you are carrying around more computing power than they used to go to the moon!
  4. Just like my blog is science for non-scientists. I don't think an unpublished writer is qualified to give writing or marketing advice, but I've done science and math tutoring.
  5. Congratulations! I'm not Catholic, but respect the tradition in science fiction, like A Canticle for Leibowitz and the Father Flandry stories. Available on Amazon? ( I anticipate gift cards this Christmas.)
  6. It could be worse. I haven't seen The Mandalorian yet, but I keep getting questions about "Baby Yoda" plush dolls that make me wonder if Disney researched the psychological compulsion of "interrupting toddler " memes.
  7. It was offered in the Reedsy newsletter. Monthly with a signup. Live to participate; recorded if unable.
  8. Fresh off a "First-Line Frenzy" webinar: First-person narration established. "Golem" announces a fantasy setting. "Detective" announces mystery. Parallel clauses imply a mysterious mashup of genres. Mashup sales are really hot right now. Maybe "gumshoe" is better. Alliteration and syllable parallels. The questions asked in this sentence: Who is this person? What was he before he was a golem? Why did he become a detective? This is very rich. It has the "hard-boiled" style of a pulp crime story. Stet. Don't churn this any more.
  9. ..I lost a John Cleese interview when my other phone was stolen. He had much the same advice for comedy writing, basically saying that the first twenty minutes is gold and you should get up and get a good cuppa after that. Then start something else, like another beat of that scene or another scene entirely. You can see this cyclical pattern in a Monty Python sketch. Set up the situation; joke; beat it to death; joke revival on another tack; shouting overreacting; the punchline. Then the Python touch: the non-sequitur segue to the next sketch.
  10. Today's WordGenius question asked for a word that wasn't synonymous with "acerbic." "Caustic" and "bitter" were given as choices. If "acerbic" is defined as "sour, " then both are antonyms in a chemical sense. "Cloying" was the correct response, probably because it's totally unrelated to the pH level of a substance. I'd probably avoid using "acerbic" as a synonym for "bitter." And "caustic?" The extra-strength drain opener is pretty extreme but would be neutralized by an acidic substance. That's my style. Word choice is important.
  11. Trivia and vocabulary games. I was an ace at It Pays to Increase Your Word Power from Readers' Digest. My parents never stopped me when I borrowed from the adult section of the library. ( Adult as in reading level; it was a small town library.) I had hearing issues, but the speech-and-hearing therapist said my vocabulary was college level, but with pronunciation issues, because I had never heard some words pronounced. (Allegory was uh-leg-or-ee. I read it in the preface to A Pilgrim's Progress. Never heard it pronounced until a high-school teacher corrected me.) Turn-based RPGs like Final Fantasy are about all I can stand on consoles.
  12. Twenty-two channels over the air. Living in the Kansas City Metro.
  13. What I always missed most about no cable was the lack of "wallpaper" channels. All news, all weather, and all sports are now available stations on streaming services.
  14. I always thought that was the point of limited omniscient third person. To be able to get into another character's head. Let's say you have an active chapter, a bombing mission in a B-29. Characters are a pilot, co-pilot/navigator, tail gunner, waist gunner, and bombardier. The chapter has transitional scenes where only the pilot and co-pilot's POV matter; fighter attacks where the gunners relate to the cockpit crew for information, and the bombing run itself. Cinematically, you'd have "cut scenes" to remind the audience that characters with nothing particular to do are still in jeopardy.
  15. The Kindle reading app has an interesting feature. On books that you "own" you can make a note by holding down any text, even the question mark on a workbook page.
  16. I've always pictured Johne as a bundle of energy with ten windows open at a time. He and Lynn, like the eyes of our little body, snap into focus when appropriate material is flagged for their attention. Read, evaluate, re-post or delete.
  17. Research time! If you know someone who writes in your genre who is conventionally published, ask who represents them. Writers' Digest has an annual listing of agents and publishers. Weed out the ones that aren't in your genre. Compile lists of your favorites, especially when they represent authors who write the same kind of books you do. At the same time, prepare a blurb and an "elevator pitch." (If you were riding in an elevator with somebody who could get your novel published, what would you say?) And "some pages, " which are three sample chapters including the first and a synopsis of the plot. As good as you can get it. Agents, in particular, are at various conferences, no matter where you live in the US. Authors you enjoy are on signing tours. Reach out, establish connections. There is more, but it's late. Congratulations on getting this far.
  18. "I love arguing with Christians, because I always win." That's me in my twenties, an agnostic with atheistic tendencies. The object of the game wasn't to destroy their faith, but to make them admit their ignorance. A lot of my self-esteem was based on feeling like the smartest person in the room. But people were praying and sharing what they knew of the Gospel, not giving up on me as a hopeless case. It wasn't a cunning argument that convinced me.A bit of small talk, followed by the planting of the seed of God's Word. and when it fell on ready soil, faith sprang up. But I do urge you to be prepared to answer the objections of an atheist. There are other ears listening. Know what you believe and why you believe it. That faith is a profound gift of grace.
  19. Distorting the meaning of a sentence to conform to outdated grammar rules is behavior up with which I will not put! Nice site, Nicholas!
  20. Much to my surprise, I got blocked from commenting on a post from early November! Thank you! Hitting the "Next Uread Post" button can take me back in time, but a timely comment is better than bleating a red hearse.
  21. A deacon passes through the sanctuary. Suddenly, a beam of light illuminates a cross on the wall. The deacon is awestruck and falls to his knees. "Lord, I am not worthy," he says. " Dear God, I am not worthy." The senior pastor hears the heart-wrenching sobs. While coming close to comfort the deacon, he, too, notices the halo-like reflection from the gilt cross. "Lord, I am unworthy. Dear Jesus, I am not worthy." The cleaning lady enters with her cart and tools. She kneels in a corner, as is her daily custom before setting to work. "Heavenly Father, I ain't worthy but I got a job to do. Give me the strength to finish, and infuse this place with Your Holy Spirit. In Jesus's name, Amen." The senior pastor turns to the deacon."Look who thinks she's not worthy."
  22. Most European languages took modern form when the Scriptures became available in translation. My college roommate used this to learn new languages. Even Finnish.
  23. I play an online game, Word Genius. It's a fill-in quiz, with a choice of four words to fill in the blank to complete a sentence. I've always had a talent for multiple-choice questions, but I'm finding the wrong answers generate intriguing writing prompts. Example: Everyone in the office asked her advice because she had a reputation for being < word>. loquacious peripatetic perspicacious indomitable But are there not circumstances when one would seek advice from a smooth-talking raconteur? A well-traveled individual? A force of nature in human form? I'll grant these words aren't the best choices but don't they present fascinating scenarios?
  24. Great, Nicholas! How do you get to Carnegie Hall? Build up muscle memory. It's really synaptic pathway reinforcement. Your voice is an amazing instrument. Look at Jim Nabors, who talked like Gomer Pyle but sang like an angel. Like Mel Tillis, who overcame his stutter. Like Susan Boyle, Mariah Carey. If you tune a two-dollar piano, it will sound better, but not like a Steinway.
  25. The free version of the Bible Gateway app has Matthew Henry abridged if you want to try it out. The clarity this scholar brought to some of the "hard sayings" amazed me, but I was uncomfortable with the eschatological material, so I'm relieved to learn that it was posthumously altered. Doctrine is too often ignored. It's valuable to know where you stand so you don't get blown around. The church in which I share fellowship offers a reading plan for the entire Bible in a year. A passage from the Old Testament, from Psalms, from Proverbs and the New Testament. (I'd say the plan divvies up Proverbs and New Testament passages arbitrarily, but the grace of God infuses His Holy Word under any plan.)
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