Saturday, February 01, 2014

A Topic-less Blog Entry

This blog has no topic.  None whatsoever.  You can search every word and paragraph and you won’t find one.  I dare you to try.  
It has no topic because I couldn’t think of one.  Or because I had too many things to choose from and I couldn’t pick one.  Or because there were things I wanted to write about but couldn’t, because they involved things I need to remain quiet about.  
One or all of the previous statements are true.  Or false.  Or a mixture of both.  Like two chemicals mixed together which, if in perfect proportion, would explode, killing us all.
We have to be very careful.  
A writer friend of mine, Sara L. Card, tagged me in an online game for writers called called “Lucky 7.”  She posted an excerpt from the seventh page of a work in progress and invited seven other writers to do the same.  
I wanted to provide a link to Sara’s excerpt from the YA novel she’s working on, but she posted it in her January 19th Facebook status and I can’t see a way to link to that.  
Here’s something from the seventh page of a story I wrote called “Robot Boss”: 
“Oh.”  Another difference between him and Sunny.  Any job was only temporary.  The goal of most people younger than Dell was to earn enough money to drop out into the other, human-driven, economy.
Sunny frowned.  “You know...  What you’re accusing Cue of doing...?  It’s something Dell used to do all the time.  Covering up his mistakes...”  
“I didn’t make--”  
“Oh-kaay, oh-kaay...”  Sunny stopped and grabbed a length of her hair.  She started twirling it.  “But, you know...  Even what you asked me to do, the AIs don’t like it.  It’s something you have to get used to dealing with them.”  
“I suppose...”  Don found himself thinking about what Dell had said to him, while training to take over his position.  How he talked about the difference between AIs and humans, how they learned the job from them...  And that manifesto he wrote.  All of it a warning of sorts.  
Sunny opened her mouth to say something, but stopped when her phone rang.  A hard-hitting, electro-punk tune.   Don recognized it as something called, “Ball-n-Chain.”  It was her ringtone for when clients contacted her.  
She tapped the screen.  Her eyes went wide.  She looked up at Don.
“What--?”  The look on Sunny’s face could only be called “grim.” 
“The client knows.”
It’s more than just an excerpt.  It’s the entire seventh page.  Reading it, I can tell there’s a lot of background left out.  I can’t remember if Sara included background in hers right now, and I’m too busy writing this right now to check.  

I’m not actually playing Lucky 7 because I don’t know seven other writers to tag.  At least not seven writers that I feel I can tag.  Sara tagged two of the ones I would have tagged had she not tagged them.  Even if she hadn’t tagged them I still would have had to find five other writers who hadn’t been tagged.  

It’s a genuine quandary.  

I’ve been feeling positive recently.  It’s quite odd.  Especially at work.  That makes it even odder. 

I bought lunch for the people in the department I manage yesterday.  The person that manages the adjoining department bought lunch for them for the hard work they’ve put in this month.  Since my people work at least as hard, I only thought it was fair that they get lunch too.  

The department did very well in January.  We didn’t make the monthly goal but that was only because of...  Well...  Things not their fault.  If it had not been for those “things not their fault,” I know for certain that my people would have reached the goal.  No doubt.  I have numbers to prove it.  

So I bought them lunch.  Chinese food.  It was good.  There was an extra fortune cookie which I read aloud, saying it was for the entire department.  “Today is a good time to spend with a companion.”  

Here’s another segment from a seventh page on something I’m working on.  It’s from the novel I’m working on, Spell of 13 Years.  It’s from the first chapter of what I hope will be the final draft: 

“Enter and be Welcome!”  The greeting leapt from my lips as I turned to greet whoever it was that had arrived at the Two Doves Inn.  The rest of my greeting was forgotten when I saw it was Melodia, the most senior of the serving girls and errand boys that lived and worked at the house.  
“It has been that kind of night, hasn’t it, Master Enrico?”  She was smiling at me  A smile that said that she had once more caught me in one of her little teases.  Looking at her, that lopsided smirk of hers, her curls the color of newly minted copper Serfs, her ample bosom and wide hips, made my feelings toward her boil up inside me, rattling the lid that kept such thoughts to myself.  
Without thinking of appearance, I stepped toward her, a smile of my own on my face.  It was at that moment that Simonetta, a serving girl with quick and nimble hands, a boyish laugh and a somewhat horsey face, pushed past behind me, carrying a tray of dirty linens and plates to the kitchen for cleaning.  Her passage forced me to stumble forward, stepping into Melodia.  
My chest pressed into her bodice.  My heart, overheated already, now blazed like an oven stuffed with fuel.  The heat burned up the chimney of my neck to turn my cheeks the color of a cherry tart, piping hot.  My hands, which I had lifted, in Perfect Truth, to ward off any contact, now stole illicit caresses, like bribed watchmen turning into criminals.  
I jumped back, as if the heat I felt came from her and I was burned by it.  My fingers still tingled from the touch of her bodice where gray and blue ribbons, symbols of the Paoli family’s allegiance to the Ox faction, were sewn.  To hide from their crime, my hands grabbed the towel tucked into my apron’s pocket and wrung it as if it were the miscreant being hanged for their deeds.  
Melodia’s smile stretched even broader across her face.  I knew if she started to laugh, a sound like wind chimes in the summer that suited her name, I would lose all composure and admit my feelings for her then and there.  
“I have to wait,” I told myself.  “Once the inn is mine.  Once I have secured my future.”  I wrung the towel even harder with those thoughts.  To strangle any chance that the inn would be taken from me, despite the secret promise my brother had made to me.  
“A very busy and eventful night,” Melodia observed with a sparkle in her eye.  “Eh, Master Enrico?”
Again, some caveats.  The segment above started on page seven, but most of it comes from page eight.  If there was a Lucky 7 referee watching me while I cut and paste the segment, he might have thrown a flag for “Encroachment on an Out of Bounds Page.”  Plus I’m still missing those seven other writers to send a link to.  

I need to get out more.  Meet some more writers so I can play games like this better.  

I’m getting ready for Convention Season.  I’m planning on three this year.  Comic-Con in San Diego.  WorldCon, which will be in London this year.  And WonderCon, which is run by the same people that run Comic-Con, which takes place in the spring in Anaheim.  

I’ve been to Comic-Con the most, something like fifteen, maybe even twenty years in a row now.  I honestly can’t remember what year I started going.  I’ve tried to research it by looking through the various convention year books I have, but I just can’t pin it down, though the earliest it would have been is 1994.  

WorldCon I’ve been going to since 2007, when it was in Yokohama, Japan.  That was a combination of two desires (To attend World Con, and, To Go to Japan) that made it impossible to resist.  

I’ve been to WonderCon once.  It is like Comic-Con when it was smaller and more focused on comic books.  I spent one day there last year and decided I wanted to make it a regular event.  

Right now I have my badge registration for Comic-Con taken care of.  I have my hotel room for WorldCon taken care of.  I have nothing for WonderCon taken care of, though they haven’t sent out the registration info for that one yet, even though it’s sooner.  

There are competing interests moving about in all of this.  I feel it’s necessary to do more than just go to the convention when I go to London.  There’s a tour I want to take for a couple of weeks, but it is costly.  I also think I might need to buy a new car this year.  The one I have is thirteen years old, and my mechanic tells me that it may need to have a new engine put in “sometime soon.”  I’m not sure I can get a new car, which I need, and go to London, which I really, really, really want to do, in the same year. 

That means decisions need to be made.  That’s a part of life.  That’s what it means to be an adult.  

I’ve reached my word limit.  Done now.

See?  No topic at all.


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