Blog Journal 11/8/19

Hello everyone, today I’m going to share with you a few writing updates. Nothing major going on in terms of my writing. And the adult working life had been taking up the rest of my time. Now that I have a few day’s I’ve taken off for my wedding anniversary I want to spend most of that time with my wife.

Book Progress is slow but steady

Part of me wishes I could be as fast a writer as those NANOWRAMO people. Writing a whole book in the month of November is a minor miracle considering it takes me the better part of two years to write a full book. Maybe Lost Sun won’t take as long as the first book I wrote. But I’m only on chapter 4 so things are not looking good on that front. According to my computer the file for Lost Sun was created on August 19th so that’s at 2 months and only 4 chapters in. Yeah a full book in a single month would kill me.

The Cull of other writing projects

As I continue to make progress on both my book and my table top RPG system I’ve needed to cut down on more side projects. These projects were not something I’ve really talked about here so nothing really major. But it was really hard for me to convince myself that those writing project needed to be canned so I could focus on the projects that I actually wanted to get done. In the process of working on those projects I created–and then deleted a whole other blog….

Games and things

With Pokemon Sword and Shield coming out soon I’ve had a hard time concentrating on other things. I did pick up a game called Digimon Cyber Sleuth but I doubt I’ll finish it before the new Pokemon game comes out and that’s taking up all my time. Gosh I hope I can find the wherewithal to work on my writing during that time.

That’s everything for this week everyone. Until we meet again.

Blog Journal 10/11/19

Hello everyone, as you may have noticed it’s Friday and I am writing my blog journal today instead of on Wednesday. Honestly I got distracted working on one of my projects the table top rpg I’m designing and as such forgot that I needed to write a blog journal until latter. Not a big deal over all but I have no idea how many of you actually look forward to reading these so I tend not to stress out about it to much.

As you might have guessed I’ve mostly recovered from being sick though there are a few lingering symptoms that I’m working through. Once I’m back up to 100% I should really remember to get my flu shot. Maybe if I write it down here I won’t forget.

Poems, Micro Stories, and blogs

As some of you might have noticed I have started writing micro stories (or maybe just short, short stories, I’m a little unsure of the definitions) you can check out my first one here. All in all I liked how it turned out and I want to write more of these, but I’m not really sure show to optimize my schedule and creative time with this new addition to my repertoire. I could write micro stories and then write one less poem that week. Or I could write two poems and a micro story–but honestly I’m not sure how to is going to feel on my end considering the whole point of only doing two poems a week is to keep myself from burning out. I’ll let you guys know what I’m going to do about that next week. But for now enjoy the new posts you’ll be getting.

Other Projects

As I said earlier I got distracted working on my Table Top RPG system that I’ve been designing. And so that’s coming along nicely. But due to that not a lot of progress has been made on the book I’ve been working on writing. Honestly I’m not really sure which of these two major projects I should be prioritizing. So it seems like each week I end up working more on when then the other–then I wonder if I should have been working on the other project instead. Maybe one day I will understand how to manage time properly–but it is not this day.

What have I been reading and playing

I’ve finally gotten around to doing some reading, and I’ve been working my way though the Hundred Thousand Kingdoms by N.K. Jemisin it’s good so far but I’ll have to wait until I’ve made my way all the way though to know for sure.

I’ve been playing a lot of games since I was so sick over the past few weeks. I’ve been working my way though another play-though of Pokemon Sun, I’ve been trying to find time to play Fire Emblem Three Houses, and I even took a crack at this new RPG called Indivisible (no relation to the political movement group).

I think that’s going to have to be all from me for now. But I do intend on blogging for re-blog Friday as I always do. Have a good weekend and I’ll talk to you next week.

Blog Journal 9/15/19

Hello again everyone everything’s been going going well lately and nothing of any amount of stress to report. This is going to be a bit of a short one since there really isn’t much to say about this week (I’m starting to notice a trend).

Reblog Friday

Some of you may have noticed already but I am starting something called reblog Friday, where I reblog a poem that I had posted here sometime ago. I think it’s going to be fun to look back at some of my past posts. I may include a little reflection on the poem as well including some incite as to what I had been thinking at the time. These will always be on Friday, I was thinking of having them be on Monday, but I think for now that will continue to be a dead day in terms of posting.

Project and book updates

I have made very little progress on my book this week. That being said I have been working on some short stories and I have launched a new blog. However I’m not going to provided a link to that blog just yet. The reason? Well the blog is for short stories connected to my esoteric Table Top Rolplaying universe. And many of the characters and plots there require the context of having played in some of my games. I will cross post, or reblog any stories that I think might be worth your time if you’re a reader of this blog.

What have I been Reading and Playing Lately

I’m ashamed to say I still have not had time to do any reading. However I have a few books now that I want to read when I get a chance. I’ve also only been working on my play-through of Pokemon Ultra Sun as far as video games go, so nothing new there.

The Obligatory Politics Post

Politics are about to get really messy again. And so I’m not going to be mentioning my news sources and podcasts that I’ve been listening to on this blog. If you follow me on social media you still might see me talk about politics. But I wouldn’t count on it. Know that I just don’t think this is a good place for politics even if it is something as casual as where I get my news posts. I guess that’s the kind of world we live in. Once 2020 passes I may start talking about that stuff again.

All right, see you next week.

Blog Journal 9/18/19

Hello everyone, another week another blog journal. As far as life goes I’ve been working hard. Work has taken up most of my time again this week so I have had less time for writing. But I think that’s about to end soon, fingers crossed.

Poems and Things

It’s a normal week for poems. Tuesday and Thursday, this schedule is working out rather well for me so I think we’ll keep going with it. Next weeks blog journal won’t include information about the schedule since its normal now. I will only include this information if something different is happening that week. In addition I will try to keep blog journals going up on Wednesday, but if I can’t for whatever reason they will be going up on Friday instead.

Short Stories and Book progress

I’ve been brain storming ideas for short stories and working on that project but I have not had time to sit down and write anything out. So nothing like that is being posted this week–unless a miracle happens.

In addition I have made very little progress on writing my book. I’m still writing chapter 2 and that’s about as far as I’ve gotten. I’m going to have to take some writing days I think very soon if I have any hope of catching up on where I want to be. But right now that requires taking a day off as my weekends are filled with things. I do have a lot of free time on Friday’s after work though so maybe I’ll take a half writing day.

What am I reading and playing

I’m planning on taking more time for reading books next week and I even have a few picked out that I think might be interesting. My video game playing has been really limited and I’ve set a goal for myself. I want to have competed another play through of Pokemon Ultra Sun before Sword and Shield come out in November. I need to catch all the Pokemon from gen 7 to help my wife complete her Pokedex, because she says I have to….

That’s everything for this week everyone, I hope to see you all next week.

Just Keep Writing

If you were to ask me what bit of writing advice I wished someone had told me sooner, this would be the most important one; just keep writing.

Keep writing even if everyone hates what you’ve written. Keep writing even if you hate what you’ve written. Write during the good times, and the bad, write silly stuff and serous stuff. Write stuff that sounds highbrow and write stuff that sounds like glorified fan fiction. Just keep writing.

Outside of just naturally getting better at writing as you do it, this also leads to you having a large selection of writing samples. Something that might be useful if you are looking to become a professional writer.

It really is that simple, but for those of you who are not sold on this let me go further.

Maybe you’re the type of writer who likes to outline everything. These kinds of people tend to make sure they know what’s going to happen at every step of the way along the path of their story and/or poem. And many times they just never get around to writing it because they either get burned out, or it’s not good enough.

But the secret is that if that’s your attitude, it’s never going to be good enough. I get the feeling behind this type of over planning writer, I have a book I’ve written that’s not going to get published without any sort of major rewrite. It sucks that it feels like I wasted all that time working on something that only a select group of people are going to see. But here’s the secret, all that time I spent working on that book–was not a wast of time.

I learned how to improve my spelling, my grammar, and my time management skills. Saying I’ve written a book in a job interview is how I’ve gotten more then a few job offers, because the skills that I developed while writing translate well to the “real world.”

It’s a tad mementic, but “just do it,” is often times the best way to get started on anything. So no matter what anyone tells you about wasting time, or needing to plan better–my advice will always be just keep writing.

But that’s just what I think….

YouTube is No Longer a Good Place for Creatives

I too once dreamed of being a gamer on youtube. My Brother and I even started a channel. But as we started to grow up time started to get away from us and we just ran out of time to do such things. When I was a kid I would play video games everyday–so being a youtube gamer seemed like a good fit for me–for us. But now a days I have to make time for gaming among all the other things that need to be done with life, I have to plan to game–something that ten year old me would have thrown a fit about.

But as you may have guessed I’m not here to talk to you about video games. I also have a youtube channel, and while I had posted gaming content their from time to time, I also posted poetry. There is a certain something about hearing poetry spoken aloud and places like youtube seemed to provide a good place to do it–not anymore though.

The first problem is that poems are short, so even if you give an introduction and an outro as well you are still only looking at 6 minuets of play time. The shorter the video the less view time it has, and view time is what determines a lot of things on youtube, like how often a video is recommended to someone, or how likely it is to get picked up for ads. So not only are you going to not get much attention, but your not going to be able to make any money off of the prospect either.

Of course poetry isn’t exactly a growth field and I doubt most of us got into this for the money. However not having as much of a presence because of the run time is still an issue. But it get’s worse.
As it turns out in recent years advertisers have gotten a little skittish with all the controversies on youtube. I could write a term paper on all of the controversy that have plagued youtube so I won’t bore you with the details. However now anything that contains “adult content” is not only less likely to be picked up by advertisers but also less likely to be shown to a wide audience. And I don’t know if you noticed but Poetry can get dark sometimes, I feel it’s not an exaggeration to call it the dark chocolate of the literature world.

Not a big deal I hear you say, and your right. The solution seems simple, post the video on youtube and embed it into your personal site. After all most of us are not here for the money or the fame. We just want to express ourselves through our poetry. Or fiction, or whatever creative medium brought you to this place.

But you know how these things go–we’re not done yet. Having something flagged as adult content can actually harm your personnel website as well. Yes that’s right, my website, Wandering Poems, once got blocked by the adult content filter on google. I go out of my way not to swear or post graphic images, so I was a little confused. But then I realized that the pages that were being blocked were the pages containing my embedded youtube videos. This wouldn’t have been the biggest deal except for some reason having one page blocked on my site meant that my homepage had also been blocked.

So I’ve since stopped posting youtube videos with recorded poems on them and it seems to have cleared up the issue. I still have some of those youtube poems posted here on my site but they are berried so far in the post history it probably doesn’t even matter anymore. I’m still not sure what I said or did in those videos that got them flagged as adult content. Part of me wonders if google views poetry as inherently adult. If that’s the case the issue of censorship is front and center once more.

But that’s just what I think….

Finding a New Path as a Writer

Here’s something you might find interesting, I’ve written a book. I haven’t gotten it published, I did try of course but there was a lot working against me, including my lack of social skills and inability to sell myself as any sort of skilled individual. I did some research into publishing after my failures and found out some frustrating things. The most frustrating is that a first book is supposed to be “put in a drawer” and then never heard or thought about again while I work on my second book which of course will be superior in every way.

Yeah right, that all sounds like high and mighty garbage to me, excuses written by kool-aid drinking pompous publishers who sit around talking about the art of writing in absolutes, as though there is only one obviously correct way to do things–or at lest that was my knee jerk reaction.

Oddly, I’ve never been the kind of person who does things the way everyone else does, heck I’m so untrendy I sound at least ten years older then I actually am with how out of sync I am with pop culture. But for some reason I’d always bought into the standard path that a writer must take, and I don’t know why. You know what I’m talking about right? Get a book published, maybe write a few articles, and then win an award or something. It all sound very easy when your listening to a story about someone else success.

None of this should have bothered me, and heck, maybe it wouldn’t have bothered me save for one issue. I had changed my story to be more appealing to publishers. I had added in artistic elements that I might not have even bothered with had I just been writing the story with no thoughts of publishing in my head, and honestly writing that book was miserable.

I’ve never been able to fully figure out why I was so unhappy writing that story. It could very easily have been a combination of factors. But when it came time to try and get my book published I–Just didn’t want to think about it anymore. The thing I thought would make me happy, had somehow made me unhappy. And I had to start thinking about why this was and what I needed to change.

After going through a time where I wasn’t really writing much of anything I decided that I needed to find a new path, a new path for me as a writer. And I had learned that the traditional way of writing, and the traditional way of publishing made me unhappy and just plain frustrated. And there’s an old truth that came to mind, don’t buy stock in a company you don’t belive in.

So I started this blog, I started posted poetry that I had saved up across, many years of writing. I had always hoped that I might get my poems published in a collection or someplace important. But I wasn’t really sure that I believed that was the correct way to do things anymore.

And then I started writing and posting stories on here, including NEXUS Monsters (Don’t worry I intend to write more about the inspiration and reason behind that story soon as well). And I’ve started to experiment with poems that tell stories in interesting ways as well. And the best part is I’m happy with what I’ve been writing and how I’ve been writing it, I’ve let go of any expectations of being published and am more then happy to just have my stuff posted somewhere on the internet. I no longer care about how my poems and stories might appeal to a wider audience, I can write for me, and it’s been a blast so far, even when things have’t worked out, or when I’ve run into issues.

Now none of this is to say that my path and your path need to be the same. Heck–the more traditional publishing path may be the perfect one for you, it clearly is for a lot of people. And now that I’m out of the way and not competing for a publishers attention it might give you more of a chance in the futuer, who knows.

If there’s one thing I’ve taken from all of this is that we should never be afraid to look for new ways of doing things, Even when it seems like we’ve hit a dead end we just have to back up and try to find another way forward. But that’s just what I think….