OK, everything's finally disentangled on this end. I don't know what kind of mess I engendered by asking for Python 3 support, but as long as it's working and working consistently, that's all I care about. On to other matters.Read more
Still sorting out some of the technical difficulties on this end; evidently I opened some kind of 55-gallon drum of engineering worms at my Web host. Anyway, I can still blog; I've just been paying attention to other things in the interim. So, today's subject: opening scenes.Read more
Still waiting on some site stuff to be fixed; here's some interim blogging for you.Read more
There is a standing rule in movies that you do not unnecessarily date your film. Putting a specific future date on a story, without some historical pretext for doing so, makes it into an antique before its time. Strange Days takes place on the last few days of the year 1999 (I won't say "the last few days of the 20th century", for obvious reasons), when violence and anarchy are seething in the streets of Los Angeles, but if anything, its pre-millennial tension feels even less dated in these times of post-millennial, post 9/11 tension. It's one of the many signs this movie was too far ahead of its time for its own good.
Many groundbreaking films don't get the audience they deserve the first time out. Critics largely trashed Strange Days for its confrontational graphic violence; audiences were either scared or confused by its fulminating story of racism and underbelly paranoia. At least one web reviewer wrote a scathing dissection of it from a Bad Movies We Love point of view. I admired it instantly when I first saw it in a packed theater on opening night, and I've become even more of an evangelist for the film since. It is far from perfect — what movie is? — but the good parts of it have remained so prescient, it's no wonder it outlasted its moment in time.Read more
The site migration's going a little bumpier than I'd like — some pieces are working better than ever, others not at all — but I'm still capable of blogging here.
Last night I did some final cleanup on Welcome to the Fold, with one very last touch to add — an additional scene suggested by my editor that puts a few things into perspective near the middle of the story. I'll need to sketch that scene out and then write it, but I think I have an existing sketch I dashed off in email to Ellen that will serve as a good model to work from. Then, again, comes the whole business of seeking out publishers, agents, etc.Read more
We're dealing with some backend stuff that may make it difficult to continue posting, as a couple of key pieces are still missing. I took advantage of the sort-of downtime to do some badly needed backend cleanup last night, although the fruits of that work may not be immediately visible.
One thing at a time.
Firesign Theater fans will get the reference, I'm sure. The hosting company has thrown the Little Chromium Switch on the server migration, and the new server seems to be quite spiffy indeed. Some pieces are still missing, but I'm in the process of having the folks at A2 take care of that. We should be back at full capacity within the day.
I'm preparing to have the site and several of its cousins moved to a new server in a couple of days. Until that happens I probably won't post anything. The current server we're on has become untenably slow, and apparently my hosting company has a sweetheart of a deal I would be foolish not to take advantage of. See you all in a few days.
Constant Readers (all two of them) will remember (assuming they have had their coffee) how some time back I posted a primer on how I develop my ideas into a story. Right now I'm at stage 1 with Always Outnumbered, Never Outgunned, bordering on stage 2. I have The Idea, and now I'm moving into The Rehearsal.
About half the Rehearsal process happens in my head; the other half — the half that is the most transformative and important — happens on paper. Or, rather, in a newly inaugurated TiddlyWiki. Right now all sorts of blue-skying is happening in there: plot possibilities, character considerations, throughlines, endpoints, kick-offs, touchdowns, and fumbles.
It's a mess.
It's supposed to be a mess. If it wasn't a mess, nothing interesting would happen there.Read more
I might have put my foot in it with my announcement yesterday that I was changing tracks — shelving the project The Palace of the Red Desert and switching to a new one named Always Outnumbered, Never Outgunned. My explanation for why I'm doing that might have come off wrong, so here's another attempt to make my motives clear.Read more
I mentioned earlier my next novel was to be called The Palace of the Red Desert, and I dropped a few hints about what it was to be — a historical fantasy of sorts, drawing on an amalgam of Asian history for inspiration.
Over the last couple of weeks, though, I had a change of heart. Okay, more like a change of heart, mind, spirit, and ambitions.Read more