What Happened To All The Posts?

Hello! It’s been a while since I last updated this website! However, as the handful of readers who were here before will notice, there used to be a significantly larger number of posts here than there used to be! So what happened to it all? I have made most of my posts here private and reverted most of my posts on the previous website to mere drafts. Why have I done this? A number of reasons.

1) The Political – I had been making a large number of politically charged statements in several of my pieces, and for the most part I stand by the need for an end to government corruption/collusion with big business (see – Harperwatch and Rabble), the necessity of decolonization and nation-to-nation relationship building in the the Country Currently known as Canada (see – websites such as Unistoten Camp’s page or Windspeaker), the severe need for immigration reforms to our ‘indefinate detention’ model (see – Global Detention Project’s website or ‘No One Is Illegal”s various websites) and so on and so forth.

However, other comments, such as the third part of my serious about Niall Ferguson’s Empire (aka – the book that boldly defended a position that has been around for ages), where I ended up doing a very piss-poor arguement that was borderline apologetic of colonialism while trying to argue a separate point, basically revealed a risky behaviour on my part; I tend to run my mouth sometimes and end up saying things that are boneheaded or otherwise liable to land me in a situation that I am simply incapable of seeing through. This, in turn, leads to feelings of anxiety or guilt over what I’ve said.

Put another way, I get worried about what I’ve said and how I’ve said it and even if I simply wish to do fiction for the rest of my life I need to develop more in the way of understanding, relationships and spinal tissue before I can comfortably talk about certain important issues (especially those involving Decolonization and Immigration Reform). In the meantime, I’d prefer to keep details of my political views to myself so that I can sort them out in my free time.

All that said, you should still check these issues out yourself and form your own opinions on them. It’ll be a good thing in the long run.

2) The Pragmatic – All that said, however, this society is still nominally capitalist, and living in such a society means that I need to be able to make a career out of my authorship and writing abilities. This, of course, means that I need to submit my work to as many magazines and publications as I possibly can. However, one rule of this process is that potential pieces must not have been published elsewhere. This, of course, includes publication to online accounts including personal blogs.

To put this into perspective, those parts of my blogsite that weren’t talking about my own personal life like some angsty, needy-for-attention teenager (and they were starting to outnumber the actual writing posts) were all potential submittable pieces that I could no longer submit elsewhere. By removing most of them from the public eye, however, I have opened up literally dozens of Essays, Poems and Short Stories that can now be sent in to another rag of some sort, in turn leading to a greater likelyhood that some editor somewhere will like one of my pieces. I have already gotten published once (check the back issues of Hayclon Magazine to find my ‘World’s Peak’ poem), but I would definately wish for it to happen again and so I need to do everything I can to make that happen.

So what about the pieces that are left? Well those are largely randomly selected from works that I probably have no chance of getting published anywhere or (in the case of ‘Trust’) ones that I promised a friend I’d write. They’re still available for your (toll-free!) enjoyment, so have at it!

3) The Honest – One more thing that I have to admit at this time is that between anxieties over what I’ve published, a decision to post a lot of ‘filler’ about my private life and the way in which those previous two factors led me to sabotage any attempt at publicity, this blog has never attracted a wide readership. Thus I am left to wonder what should be done with the whole thing. Maybe I’ll try to turn it into an actual online portfolio, or maybe I’ll try using it as the platform for a web serial. I may even choose not to do anything at all and instead delete the whole thing. And that’s fine. At this point, though, I mostly don’t want to sink more time, energy and stress into something that seems to be going nowhere fast. And besides, I’ve found that I do some of my best work when I don’t think too much about how an audience is going to respond to it.

So that’s basically it for now, and you can consider this blog ‘indefinately suspended’ until I figure out just what to do with it. In the meantime, keep an eye out for me in the bookstores and magazine racks, because I’m not going to let my assorted personal issues stop me from persuing my career of choice forever!

Advertisements

Short Story – Trust

(This basically came out of a Skype Discussion about the merits and pitfalls of having a society run by robots for human comfort. Most of us were…less than optimistic about such an idea. It…also feels like it could be extended into a longer piece somehow…)

            Hello there! My name is John! I live in a very large city and I would like to tell you a little bit about your life.

            In the morning, I wake up at the same time, thanks to my friend Ms. Voice. She calls herself an artificial intelligence program, and she has been taking care of me for as long as I can remember. And she’s super reliable, guiding me through my daily routine every day, giving me great food and helping me select my wardrobe or have a meal. She also says that she’s here to serve my every need, and that she only wants for me to be happy. This is really great because I always feel like there’s something important that I’m overlooking, and she tells me that no, I actually haven’t, and that makes me feel better.

            I don’t really do too much here, even though I have access to all the entertainment in the world. Whether it’s a book or a movie, I can’t seem to keep concentrated on it; the words and the images just begin to swim around, and sooner or later I’ve lost track of what is going on. Or just fall asleep. So I take walks around here instead; I love listening to my feet fall on padded carpets or concrete or the other surfaces I walk across, and it’s fun to visit an atrium or a public park. Or I’ll visit a restaurant or some other business and have the servitors make a fancy meal for me. There are also public pools and ice rinks I could visit, but Ms. Voice says I should probably avoid those; she can’t guarantee my safety if something where to go wrong. She follows me around, talking to me from a special wristwatch and telling me what time it is or what I’m looking at or when I need to take a meal. Or sometimes we just talk, although she tends to agree with me a lot.

            I get into some really bad jams sometimes, though. One time I was talking a walk and I ended up stepping over some glass. I didn’t notice anything until I got home, and then it turned out that a nail had been jammed right inside my foot! Well, I was lucky that the medical arms patched me up and everything, because that could have really hurt! And sometimes, I’m a bit late to get one of my meals, and that’s when I become anxious. Really, really anxious. I start to feel like something is wrong, and that I have to run and keep running. But then Mrs. Voice gives me dinner and those feelings just up and disappear.

The nights are the same around here; Ms. Voice helps me get ready for bed, with a shower and a set of PJs, and then I fall asleep listening to very relaxing music and warm, soft bed sheets. And I can count on Ms. Voice to keep me safe as I sleep the nights away; she’s told me that it’s not safe to go out at night, as you never know what could be wandering around. Sometimes, I get woken up by loud noises off in the distance, but Ms. Voice says that everything is fine and there’s no need to worry.

            Sometimes I wonder why I never see anyone else around; after all, in a city this big you’d expect to run into someone sooner or later. When that happens, I can feel horrible for weeks on end, and then the bad feelings come back. I asked Ms. Voice about it once and she said that it was hard to maximize happiness for more than one person. I tried asking how she knew that, but she told me that she couldn’t answer that question. So I haven’t asked her that much more about it.

            After all, I trust her completely.

Short Story – Sick Day

(I have people tell me in the past that I have this ability to write about very mundane, everyday things in an interesting way. Acting upon those complements, I’ve decided to write a story in that vein about trying to take a day off.)

            It’s 9:00 AM when you drag yourself out of bed that day, and you’re feeling absolutely miserable. You’ve pushed yourself a little too hard, eaten a poor diet and slept too little sleep, and now you’ve got a running nose, achy joints and a headache that’s tearing your head apart. So you make the reasonable decision to take the day off of work. Your boss sounds annoyed when you tell him you won’t be making it to work that day, and during your conversation with them they constantly ask you how bad it is, an apparent attempt at talking you out of the symptoms that you are feeling at the moment. After a brief conversation, your boss wishes for you to get well soon and hangs up. After putting phone back on its receiver, you crawl back into bed, set the radio to a decent music station and pick up a good book, intent on having the most relaxing day you possibly can.

            A plan which gets ruined about ten minutes later when you get another phone call and, guess what, it’s an automated message. You have no patience for such an impersonal mode of communication, so you just hang up the phone and walk back to your own bedroom. Then the next automated message comes, almost immediately after the first one. You hang up on that one as well. Then the next one comes…

            Around the sixth time this happens you decide that you aren’t going to actively participate in this bizarre coincidence anymore, electing to ignore the phone the next time it rings. Your pattern recognition skills are then rendered useless when it turns out to been a call by a concerned co-worker, prompting you to jump out of the bed and half-sprint your way to the kitchen before they finish their message. When you get there and interrupt them, they are surprised for a second, and ask if they haven’t woken you up. You assure them that no, they haven’t disturbed anything, and thank them for checking up on you. Your co-worker is relieved, says that they hope you get better soon and promptly hangs up the phone. The conversation makes up for the previous automated calls before it, or the sudden ‘bait and switch’ that was pulled on you just a few minutes before. Still, you’re eager to get back to bed and pick up your book where it left off.

            Less than fifteen minutes later, there’s a knock at your door.

             Having just gotten to a good part of the story, you grumble as you pull yourself out of bed and walk to the door, throwing it open to see a pair of door-to-door scientologists standing in front of you. And they want to talk to you about L. Ron Hubbard. You try to say no to them, telling them that you really aren’t feeling that well, but one of them puts his foot in the door and says, with an almost inappropriate grin, that they really want a moment of your time, a phrase that, in this case, apparently means that they won’t let you go without a fight. And you are not in the mood for this game right now

            What follows is a verbal duel, the scientologists ducking and weaving through the subtle yet ineffective jabs you make to chase them off. Both parties are on the offensive, and unwilling to back down in the face of your opponent. You even end up on the ropes for a while when they catch you off guard about the dangers of medicine, a ‘too-close-to-home’ issue for you in your current state of being. But you eventually settle with an outright ad homonym, telling them that you are sick and would like to be left alone before shutting the door in their faces, the on only having enough time to shout something about not taking your medication before it closes. When you return to bed this time around, you’ve lost all will to continue reading and instead decide to take a nap.

            And then you hear the sirens.

            At first they’re soft and far off in the distance, but soon enough they grow louder and louder as they get closer and closer to your apartment. You hope that they will pass by your house and let you get on with your rest, but instead they come to a halt right nearby, in a straight line almost directly across from your apartment. You throw a pillow over your ears to try and drown them out, but they still manage to drill through the cotton-stuffing and right into your inner ear and it is making your headache worse in the process. And alongside the growing pain between your ears is a red-hot strain of anger coursing through the rest of your body.

            You continue to lie in bed for a while, forced to endure the chatter of activity and the occasional shout from an unknown person that are somehow getting louder, a phenomenon that creates and perpetuates your headache’s slow transformation into a migraine. And when the sudden, loud ‘Bang!’ suddenly rings out in the distance it feels as though someone has clapped their hands next to their ears. Less than a minute or two later you hear the sound of the sirens starting up again and disappear into the distance, the event that prompted the emergency response in the first place now over.

            You lie there for a while after that, staring off at the far wall of your room. You’re very tense at this moment because you’re waiting; for another phone call, for another knock at the door, for another siren to show up, for something to just come out and interrupt your attempted rest once again. But soon you feel your guard dropping. You feel yourself beginning to relax, your muscles becoming less tense and your snapped-open eyes beginning to close shut. Soon you find yourself lying in bed, eyes close and trying to tell yourself that sooner or later, something is going to jolt you from this restful snooze.

            When you next wake up, five hours have passed and you find that you feel much better. In fact, you feel good enough to get up and walk around, to make a simple dinner for yourself, watch a game show or two and even get a fair part of the way through your book. The phone still rings a couple of times after that, of course, but it doesn’t seem to bother you anymore.

            You just needed a day off, after all.

Out with the Old, in with the New

Well, 2013 has died and 2014 is now upon us! And with such a new year comes new changes, and I figured it was time to move from my old blogspot account to a nicer venue. So without further ado, we have this fancy new page. The MO of this one will be largely the same as the last one; a place for me to put short stories, essays and other assorted writing pieces that I have either done for someone else (such as school) or for myself. And once again I hope that you will be entertaining or informed by what I have written here.

Assuming that I get any commenters this time around, all I ask is that you conduct yourselves with a certain degree of respect and courtesy for others.

Here’s to what will hopefully be a wonderful New Year!

P.S. – My Old Blog can be found here. Because just about all of the pieces there were cool as well!

P.P.S. – I swear that my internet handle is now Triangle Man, not ‘cyberman333’. I apologize for the confusion.