Monthly Archives: July 2010

Another Loophole in a site membership

okay, now I’m a little sad. this site, Fan Story.com  said
“get reviews, you don’t have to review to get reviews” and now i find out you do have to review, or you have to pay more.
 
I’ve already paid 67 bucks. Now i can pay more, or i can try to make time to read someone else stories and offer them help – when i am not qualified, or i wouldn’t be asking for help.

Also reading others online you don’t know what your getting into. Some of the online writing is so bad – worse than mine that i don’t want to read it – i make enough mistakes on my own and don’t want to be exposed to writings that are not so great, or flat out bad. I thought since this was a pay site, that they meant you don’t have to review to get reviews. [its true in kind of a sneaky way.] 

And yes, i read the FAQ and policies -but  i didn’t read about the rewards and certificates. I thought it would be a while before i got any kind of  certificate or reward thingies, so thinking it didn’t matter and with so much else to read – that all takes time from my writing time – i skipped that part. Turns, out that you don’t win rewards and certificates – you buy them, or earn them by reviewing others work. So here i am promises already broken, but still a little hopeful that i really will get some advise and critique, but now totally out of the mood, my bubble burst.

How do i keep getting caught up in this kind of crap? When will i learn that internet sites promise all kinds of things  – and even if they provide what they say, there are hidden [or easy to look past] strings attached –

Someday, if i have time i will look at other stories that are already reviewed as good and give it a try, maybe. Otherwise i will just stick with the local writer’s group i already joined for a lot less money. They have been great, but only get to see them once a month so i thought this would be a good in-between thing to do.

Actually i was going to think about it, but I’m on my way back to cancel that one.

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Work and Writing

Wow! Its amazing how having a full time job gets in the way of life. I’m coming off of about 6 years of being unemployed or self employed and now with this new job it has been a little depressing. I don’t remember how working people actually get things done. The businesses and agencies that i have to do business with are only open the hours that i work, i know its like that for everyone. When i was working full time, and even more than full time, i handled it in stride too.

I am in training now, so i don’t know what my more permanent shift will be. I hope it will either be the earliest or the latest shift possible at least most of the time. And i badly want to work weekends. I know, weird – huh?

So I am using an old fashioned calendar, one you write on, as well as making reminders in my cell phone. I am also beginning to plan my days better so i can get more of what i want to get done accomplished. So everything is great!

Writer’s meeting

Omgosh I attended a local writers
meeting. I don’t know how many total members there are, but 10 of
them showed up the night I went.


I learned about the group from one of
the librarians at the public library when I asked about writing
workshops and before that didn’t even know there was such a thing! I guess it is unusual for someone to just show up one day
like I did. They were talking about having events to get more members
and said people don’t usually ‘just show up’ like I did. Guess I’m
braver than I thought. I really want to learn more about the writing
process, I am enjoying it so much.


And it did get a little scary! It was
run using a loose platform from ‘Robert’s rules of order’, but it
was fun, the members are awesome! They have a president, [who happens
to be a published author already and I don’t know how many other
members have sold books.] and other ‘officer’s’ as well and their
always needing more willing members. The opening business was
conducted at the start of the meeting and everyone introduced
themselves. I had to be honest, and told them during introductions
that I had only written some fan fiction that had been written by
others, but really enjoyed it and wanted to become a better writer. I
admitted I’ve been working on my own stories and characters.


A few didn’t know what fan-fiction was,
but others did, and there were other members who started out that way
as well! [What a relief!]


So then they came to the writing
assignment! Each month everyone is supposed to read a little of their
writing for the others to critique and comment on. As it happened I
had printed out the first two pages of my story hoping to meet
someone I could convince to read it after the real meeting, but I had
no idea they did this.


So not only did I have to share my
story with others, face to face with strangers, and not online – I
had to read out loud in front of the whole group! Eeeek!


I thought seriously about not
mentioning that I had brought anything – but sucked it up. After
all, that is what I was there for and if I can’t take criticism I
should just give up now.


Online, I sometimes get conflicting
reviews for the same piece, like ‘too much description’, and ‘not
enough description’ and I learned the same thing can happen in
person, among people sitting across the room from each other lolz.


I read: “She had a crush on him.”


A woman across the table from me said I
shouldn’t just say it like that, she said I’ve ‘identified that
character that way, and I should show it, not tell it.’


The man siting three down from me, said
or you can just say “She had a crush on him,” and get on
with the story. Lol.



I think other than grammar and spelling
and punctuation and stuff [that was all wrong, hehehe] I think
everything else is determined by the writers style and you just have
to hope that more people like your style than not. There will always
be differing opinions on any sentence or paragraph you ask about.


Just like when reading something as
wide-spread as the bible, every phrase had a different meaning for
each person who reads it. Not right or wrong, just different. I have
to admit that I haven’t been a frequent reader; and then mostly
non-fiction books. Writing fiction is different in many ways than
writing non-fiction.


People have said to write well, you
have to read a lot. So I’ve been reading a little more at least. And
I find that published authors often do things that people have told
me not to do. Like mixing a very short sentence with long sentences.


Once you get published, you can get
away with things that you shouldn’t do when you’re starting out is
another thing I learned.


I cant wait for the next meeting. I
will rewrite what I read the first time and see if I can make it
better, or at least not have the same comments. I am finding it all
so interesting, not only for my writing, but how human minds work.
For instance again, my mind doesn’t even understand what’s going on
when writers are being all ‘artistic’ [I guess that’s what it is].
This style reminds me of poetry that I just don’t understand. I read
stuff all the time online that I just don’t understand and don’t
finish. Is it just me? I don’t think I’m dumb or anything, but my
brain sure doesn’t work like some other folks’ brains seem to work.


On was a whole lot of important
sounding words, but I couldn’t tell you what the short piece was
really about, even if I read it again.


I like reading books meant for young
readers best and still think that is what I am best-suited to write
if I can write anything. I averaged page hit counts out and for the
last year I have about 3,000 hits per month on my stories, spread
across 4 different web sites where I’ve posted them. I think they
must be making sense to someone

Some of my favorite authors of fiction
right now are:

Lemony Snicket

Christopher Moore

Douglas Adams

J.K. Rowling

and I read Michael Nesmeth’s book, “The
Long Sandy Hair of Neftoon Zamora” and absolutely loved it. I
bought another and had it autographed.




Obama

This was copied from a conversation i had in a 13 year old’s online journal that i ran across and responded to. I feel really bad for her and really hope she finds some peace and clarity. I’m leaving her real name or the user ID she used off, but for this I think I shall call her Sue. I didn’t edit, or correct/change what she wrote in any way. I don’t usually give random crap about politics online a second look, but this i decided not to ignore.

Sue wrote:

“before you read this just to be clear:
1.)i do not hate obama himself just what he has done to this fine country
2.)i am not rasict i was made fun of just ‘cuz im japanese but i am also italian, slovack, and south korean
3.)i love my country
4.)i dont hate illegal aliens just GTFO of OUR (our as in the LEGAL imagrants and people who are here LEGALLY) wonderful country!
5.)i know i dont know everything i mean im only 13 but im smart to know whats right and wrong >
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Obama: YES WE CAN!
he promised change that will help us all….
now 2010 and almost EVERYONE IS REGRETING THAT WE VOTED FOR HIM!
when i was in 6th grade i wanted McCain to be president and now i definetly do! ppl said “he is to old he’ll die on the job” well…. look at who will be next in line SARAH PALIN! she is the best ZA BEST! but back to 6th grade i thought nothing about politics i hated it to death -_-‘ but when obama was voted in i was like “okay sure lets see how this goes”… now here i am 7th grader who love news and wishes for obama to get out of the white house along with nancy polosei, joe biden, annita dunn, and a lot of the congress >.< i just wanted to be a regular teen with a regular futer mangaka and teacher life but no way dat’s going to happen with all of the illegal aliens. listen to any people who support amnesty go in the corner and think of how WRONG that idea is > i understand that its bad in mexico but an illegal KILLED an innocent man for no INTELEGENT reason! would you just kill some random person so you can have $2? i dont think that is even possible oh wait but it happened…. the congress in Arizona has a good point we should SECURE the BORDER so people dont get lets see umm KILLED and kids dont get KIDNAPPED! how does that sound? good? good! obama how can this be good for you? an illegal can kill you or kidnap your kids for $5. does that sound good? i dont think so! and dont say “we are trying are best.” NO YOU ARE NOT! POOR GEORGE WASHINGTON IS TURNING IN HIS GRAVE! sorry thats all for today -_-‘ MATA ASHITA~!

Roadplug:
    I just had to respond, could you have ignored it? I just didn’t have much time at that moment, and I also didn’t want to jump into a deep conversation with her right out of the blue, but after only one message, it was still kinda blue, with only a green tint to it. So first, I simply replied, “Perhaps be sure you are thinking clearly about Obama” and waited to see what the young person would say. I wanted to ask her how she knows what George Washington is thinking, but I withheld further opinion for now.

Sue replied simply:

    “thinking clearly about obama? what do you mean by dat? @_@ (sorry i can be very stupid  )”

    I think it is so sad too, that he/she thinks that she can be very stupid – she is not at all stupid because she doesn’t know what I meant – sometimes I don’t know what I mean. After the load of misinformed, opinionated thoughts she had in her journal, i wish she was not feeling stupid about asking a simple question for clarity.

So I tried to explain:

Roadplug:    “I mean, you say these things all like they are proven fact, but really you are just repeating what other people, perhaps your parents have told you. What you posted, publicly is just like spreading erroneous information through an un-verified chain email hoax. These are forwarded thousands of times claiming to be some kind of Truth, but are either meaningless or actually hurtful. This sort of thing spreads like poison.

    Let me try to explain what I mean, for example:

    Where did you get your numbers that prove:

    “Almost everyone is regretting that we voted for him.”

    I can tell you that I am not regretting at all that he made it into office, [although I didn’t vote] and I don’t know anyone else who is, personally. In fact, among the people i know, some who didn’t vote for him, or only voted for him because they thought McCain was worse, are liking Obama better and better all the time.

    Even though i said that, I still don’t have enough accurate information to say publicly – or even to friends that “More people like Obama.” [Except that he was elected.]

    I really don’t know beyond his being elected if more people like him, because I have done no research myself to prove my opinion right or wrong, just like you haven’t either; to back up what you are repeating. Maybe the balance has shifted, but I doubt it.

    The rest of what you spew, I decided not to address separately, because I am not taking the time to do any research to give you accurate information to correct you, because to correct you about meaningless political banter and fluff – and what is right or wrong is not my concern at this time.

    Since you mention $5 and seem very attached to the meaning you have put with it, I will say that that plenty of Americans who are here legally, that were born here, kill and kidnap people, including kids AND sometimes only pizza and beer are involved, [not even $5 in cash].

    Where did you get the statistics or facts about someone being killed or kidnapped for five dollars? Can you point me to the trusted new article[s]? Even if you can, I’m sure I can find another hundred news stories from the same time in history [present] about people getting killed and kidnapped for a lot less than $5 in every country on earth. Human’s do terrible things to each other all the time and all through history and Obama has nothing to do with it.

    Would it be better if people were killed and kidnapped for $500 or $5,000? [Say no here.]
All the suffering – like people being killed, is the nature of being human and where the phrase ‘hell on earth’ comes from.

    In fact do some more unbiased research yourself on Palin – you may not think so much of her afterward, or maybe you will even love her even more – but either way you will be more informed, and have facts from reliable sources to back up your opinions, and not just hearsay.

 Don’t blame Obama or other individuals or any one group of humans, until you’ve checked all the facts and made sure your sources are unbiased and reputable. Even then, we are all in this together. News programs, articles and stories alone – are certainly not unbiased. If you put information together from many sources and then you will see that the problems are not caused by any one person or one nationality, and everything is open to interpretation.

    Very few people are doing their best, and most can’t even agree on what ‘best’ is.

    So lighten up, love everyone, and stop spreading the hate.

Okay – so that was the best I could offer as explanation at the time. When I got the reply, oh my goodness – she didn’t seem to understand anything I said, and only wanted to argue about things that she hadn’t even mentioned in the first entry.
She also argued with me about things i said that she agreed with – her response was:

Sue:
“okay listen this is just my opinion okay? and did you not see the freaking huge tea party? (pardon my french) and no i am not repeating what i heard this is my opinion as a worried citizen of the USA, because i dont what debt on my head for something i didnt do -3- i know it is very inmature and as i said i am only 13 i do not know everything and some of my info might not be completly accurate but Obama passed the Health care and it allowed abortion which is (no matter what anyone says) MURDER and after losing my little brother before he could even see the world i deeply DESPISE that anyone would think of having an abortion i am sorry if my journal entry is not completly accurate and i dont hate obama himself just what he is allowing to happen =_= i am not spreading hate i am just expressing my opinion like i do every day. (just reminding you i am still JUST 13 =_ now i understand many of the things you said and i respect your opinion and i am sorry if i made you mad or offended you but i am just worried about my family and myself and many other americans who are worried about thier families (from debt and threats like illegals) (btw fyi.. my mother came here legally from Japan so i dont see how hard it is for people to learn god damn (pardon my french) english and become legal! >.&lt and i am sorry for saying them like a proven facts. i wish to tell you that many (like a ton -3-) of people i know dont like what obama is doing (im just saying obama cuz im dont know all the congress men @_@) and this is in my OPINION as i said before (me is only 13 yr old)so im sorry and have a good day.

After reading that, still determined to get her to take a deep breath and so some reading, I tried again;

Roadplug:
“My dear, I know you are 13.

    You said what grade you are in in your journal entry, and I read and understood it. It seems you didn’t understand anything I tried to share with you.

    Yes – Yes i saw the ‘freaking huge tea party.’

    If you feel you are old enough to post or talk about politics in public, or at all to anyone, you are old enough to get replied to.
I’m replying – although I am not replying, to argue politics with you.

    If you want to post about politics, you are also old enough to do some research on both sides of the argument yourself and make sure you really understand, and are thinking clearly; then whatever you’re opinion is, its fine. What I’m saying is that you don’t have to be a ‘very worried citizen of the USA – You are only 13 as you have said multiple times.

    I don’t even know what you mean by, ‘I don’t want debt on my head for something I didn’t do?’ My only guess is that there is no debt that will be on your head, unless you have brought it on your own head all by yourself. This is something that it seems like you are already doing, at a very young age.

    And Yes – Right now, you ARE only repeating what you’ve ‘heard’ and you’re spreading the emotion, even if not all the facts. That is quite a responsibility, don’t you think? Perhaps you have never even heard the ‘other side’ of these arguments or opinions that disagree with what you have been taught. There are more than two sides to everything, and many different ways to think about things.

    And I know you are not the only one, the only person to talk in ignorance about things they really don’t know about. I don’t know either, but I’m not writing editorials. People much older than you do it all the time. I chose to pick on you because you posted in a public journal and I happened to see it, and I’m worried about you and all the other thirteen-year-olds who are burdened unnecessarily by this kind of stuff.

    You say this is just your opinion, but where did you get your opinion? From what other people have told you right? So yes, you are repeating what what you have heard. You spout politics like most adults do – without really knowing what you are spouting. Opinions are like butts, we all have one.

    And oh my dear! Now you’ve added abortion to your list of worries. Abortion has been around since sex has been around, not just because Obama has passed it in your lifetime. 

    Here’s another way to think about it. Sounds to me like you never actually had a little brother. Whoa! Now you can be really mad at me. In my case, I might have had a twin when I was born, there was a twin in my mom’s belly with me during pregnancy, but the twin was never born. That means, I never had a twin – just like most other people are not twins. It only means I had a chance of having a twin. I never had a twin, so I never had reason to mourn or feel bad. I can’t feel bad about something I never had, and you certainly shouldn’t have had this guilt trip put on you!

    Wish I could give you a hug at this moment. The end of life is  ‘one of those things’ and is part of what I said before about the suffering that goes on among humans – and this suffering has been going on for all of time, there is no need to panic or get all depressed about it now.

    Its just now, you are so young, only 13 and for some reason, you are all shook up about these things and looking for someone to blame; like Obama, when he had nothing to do with it.

    I am not saying whether I am for or against abortion – telling you my political views, that’s not my purpose for continuing this conversation.

    You are spreading your anger, sharing your negative opinion – and yes – you are sharing hate.

    You didn’t upset me at all and I am not mad – I am concerned about you and others like you. I truly couldn’t care less about politics, but I hoped to help you calm down and think clearly about things. Thanks, by the way for the INsincere wish that I be well.

    Illegals have also been around forever – and are not responsible for everything that goes wrong in this country. The United States is a country full of people from other places – that’s what we are, it would be nice if everyone would get the correct paperwork in order before moving around, but they don’t.

    We are also mostly free here. Free to speak any language we want, to have any religion we want and pretty much say anything we want. Very narrow-minded, ignorant people spout about the ‘god damn people who won’t learn English’.

And I have been turned down for very good jobs jobs, in ‘my’ country, [the USA] because I don’t speak a second language [Spanish]. It’s just one of those things that happens with changing times.

You are as caught up in the ‘hype’ as much as so many other people are and I’m just trying to help you see more clearly, hoping you can take a deep breath.

    Did you know, TV network news reporters do not report news? They talk about events, some news, most not and put a slant to them. Emphasizing some points while omitting others. They tell stories in such a way as to evoke certain emotions from large groups of people. They don’t just report facts. For proof, you can see the same ‘news’ story on two different channels and feel differently after each. Also, in a huge hurry to get the scoop before the other channels, they start reporting things before they even have all the facts.

    I am saying, you don’t have to freak out or worry any more about the politics in this country now, than about the politics and what’s going on at any time in history. We are in no more danger now than we ever have been. Perhaps less in some ways than when we went to war.

    I’m saying mellow out – learn – learn to think clearly about life and whats going on around you.

    I knew you would take everything i said personally and try to argue back, still in ignorance of the issues and in ignorance of what i was trying to say to you and you did – and you even added a few more things to worry about.
 
    Thank-you, this is my whole point – people will argue to their deaths, if they get the opportunity, about their opinions! Just opinions! Fact based or not. When you grow up, you may feel totally different about all the things you are worrying about now. In fact you may change your opinions many many times during your life.

    I’m not arguing the politics and decisions being made, the whole    heath care thingy might work out, or might be terrible. I just don’t think us lay people know enough about the intricacies to make an educated guess unless we do a lot of research and study.

    We can’t even simply count votes in this country. 1+1 does not equal 2 here.

    I’m offering you a teaching that i had to wait till i was in my thirty’s to hear and accept. If you can’t accept it at this time, its fine, but you will be exhausted by the time you’re thirty.

    My reason for writing is because of the very small hope i have, that after we talk, you can take a deep breath and feel more relaxed, less opinionated, and less sure you know just everything at the age of 13.

    I realize how silly that is – a teenager that doesn’t ‘know everything’ and I know I may just be spinning my wheels here, but I thought I’d give it a try.

    Can you let go and take a deep breath?
    Can you really, authentically wish me a good day now, or are you too angry?

    In case you missed the teaching I am presenting here is that, I DON’T KNOW EVERYTHING – YOU DON’T KNOW EVERYTHING – Nobody Does.

    Isn’t it a little scary? Even those around me whom i love an respect, don’t know. All humans have a very narrow view of the world naturally. If we aren’t very careful, we can get trapped in the local hype with a completely closed off mind.

    Now if ‘not knowing’ isn’t something you’re willing to consider right now, I totally understand . . . it can be very hard to accept at any age.

    Unless you have a question, and reply – you won’t hear from me again, cause I don’t want to keep spinning my wheels if it is of no benefit to you. So don’t worry about me bugging you again.

    May you be happy, may you find peace. 


That was the end.
I never heard from her/him again and I’m not surprised. She won’t have honest questions and won’t reply unless she wants to argue some more and I’m not going to respond to that.

    But let me insert a little more commentary, just because this is my online thingy and I can.

    This whole thing about politics, network news and ignorance just irritates the hell out of me, briefly – if i even bother to think about it for a moment  – News, news reporters on TV networks are evil!

    I don’t watch them myself, but after a friend of mine who is very learned about current events read this conversation she told me that most of what this kid is worrying about – she is quoting from hearing it on TV, or from someone else who heard it on TV. She said the republicans are saying our youth will have all the troubles on the world on them if the politics continues like it is.

    WHAT A LOAD OF CRAP!

    Before you freak out and tell me, but you have to watch the news or read the paper – you have to know what is going on.
    A. No I don’t
    B. If I watch TV and read the paper, I still won’t really know whats going on.

    The one chance I had a few years ago to see a terrible news ‘story’ unfold from both sides really opened my eyes. During the days it went on, I was on the ‘front line’ so to speak. Each evening when i got to come home, on TV, I saw first hand how much of a ‘story’ the ‘news’ really is.

    They weren’t reporting truthfully what happened, or what was happening. They were reporting what politicians and others in power wanted them to report. A fluffy version of the terrible suffering that went on. I’m sure to protect the public, and to protect those involved from negative public opinion.

    If the public really knew what was going on – there would have been a lot more um – involvement? Is that a good way to describe it?

    Now this conversation i had with this child, is a clear example of the needless suffering caused by today’s media, and this poor kid is growing up with a lot of concerns that she shouldn’t have or even know about at her age.