It’s a deceptively bright and sunny 34 degrees (Fahrenheit) out on my apartment balcony. Nature has failed to match my sense of despair on this, the last day of my vacation.
It’s a busy day of running around ahead of me. As soon as I’m showered and otherwise cleaned up, I intend to face the queue at the county office to set up a DBA for my pen name, and a business bank account after that. It’s a concrete act of commitment to these wild plans of mine to make this the year I start making money off of writing.
After that I’ll flip a coin between running around the green belt with my camera or camp out in a cafe to work on the other Big Project, which I look forward to declaring victory over as soon as possible.
Grumpy Uncle Letters
I just finished reading the first edition of the year of Warren Ellis’s excellent weekly newsletter, Orbital Operations. His is my favorite of all the newsletters I currently read, and you should subscribe. His ramblings roll out in a grim but delightful prose, and he recommends all sorts of weird and wonderful books, music, art, and more that I would not have come across on my own. It’s like getting an email every week from your cool but dark humored old hermit uncle who lives alone in the UK.
I had a bit of a cooking experiment the other night that Reed was mostly happy about. I’m on a quest for a good, fast, home made peanut sauce recipe. I’ve had some luck with the one I found in Vegan Unplugged, the camping and survivalist vegan cookbook. The sauce itself is good, but I need to do the math to make a larger volume, as I use several ounces more of fresh vegetables than the original recipe is meant for.
Along with that, I fried up some tofu, which I am still working to perfect (the tofu press has become one of my favorite kitchen tools). For this dish, I just rolled the cubes around in some corn starch and fried them up as is. I need to figure out a spice set to mix in with the corn starch that works with the flavors of stir fries. My fish-fry style tofu does not work with Asian-style dishes. I could always marinate and bake it, but frying is so much faster.
Goals and Such
I started reading Syd Field’s famous screenwriting book last night. This was Reed’s suggestion, after a conversation we had a few weeks back about how genre fiction often benefits from a similar structure to that strictly adhered to in successful scripts, because genre fiction and screenplays both need to successfully tell stories. I could undoubtedly write a very long separate post about that, so I’ll save it for the future.
The point of bringing it up is to say that I am working to study story telling as a craft, to take Katherine Hurley‘s advice. I think I’m going to put most of my fiction efforts into short stories this year, although I do hope to get the novel worked up into at least a usable draft by this summer.
That said, writing gigs that pay will be taking priority over art for a while, and I don’t yet know what that’s going to look like. We’ll see how things actually shake out.
It feels good to be blogging again.