Thursday, July 28, 2011

Terry Pratchett - Official Website : Wyrd Stuff

Terry Pratchett - Official Website : Wyrd Stuff

Terry Pratchett's 'Wee Free Men' is currently available to read on his website for FREE. DO IT DO IT DO IT.

If you have not had the pleasure of reading Sir Pratchett and exploring his unique fantasy world, this is a treat not to be missed.

Pratchett originally wrote 'Mort', the first novel in what became the Discworld series, as a parody of the serious fantasy genre. Discworld has since progressed into a 20(?) novel 'series' (in quotes because each novel works perfectly well as a stand alone) with well rounded characters the reader can care about, deep themes ranging from women in the military to Middle Eastern politics, all wrapped in a rollicking adventure with grace and humor, set at a page turning pace.

I'm always careful about buying one of these, because I'll be unable to tear myself away from it until it's finished.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011


href=">Regretsy Makes me happy.

It's like the worst of fan fiction on display, only for the crafting universe. Poorly constructed, often born of a mind that would give sane persons nightmares, these 'crafts' are the worst of the worst offerings on a site for all things handmade, Etsy (barring all of the retail items there, of course).

The mind doesn't boggle so much that there are people out there that are lousy craftsmen; not everyone's creative bent translates well through manual skill. What does give me pause is that people have put these things up for SALE. The equivalent of (often x rated) macaroni art on craft paper. And often at an exorbitant price point.

And I thought self delusion belonged only to us writer-types.


Sunday, July 24, 2011

Sometimes real life is stranger than fiction

It took me a little while to figure out how to get back to this blog.

I've been thinking about that 'write what you know' advice, and another level on which it often fails.

Real life experiences can sometimes be stranger than fiction, and more importantly, they don't have to make sense.

I visited the walk of fame in Hollywood a few years ago. Struggling actors dress up as costumed characters and busk for change from tourists in exchange for having their pictures taken. Some spots are considered 'prime', and there's a bit of competition for them, sometimes violent.

There was a person dressed in a spectacular Davey Jones (from Pirates) costume, and a fairly viable Jack Sparrow set up shop on one side of him. A few minutes later, another Jack appeared on his left. The Jacks glared at each other behind the scene stealing Davey (neither Jack was particularly good performance wise, and both were relying on the attention of the center performer). They began catcalling and harassing each other.

This escalated to fisticuffs after a little while.

That's right - in real life, I saw two Jack Sparrows trying to beat the crap out of each other while Davey Jones watched, shrugging and waving to the crowd.

If I put this in a story, no one would believe me. It didn't make a whole lot of sense (perhaps in the context of desperate actors?), and it had not much to do with the rest of my day. I have no idea how this would fit into a narrative.

Mostly, this was an excuse to tell you all about the fistfight between Jacks with Davey Jones keeping score, which was just awesome.