First First Book

The wall, I hit it today. This was not a 2,000+ word day. It was not a 1,667+ word day. Nor a 1,000 or 750 word day. The last time I checked I was at 261 words. Maybe I will add another 39 words to hit 300.


I have until Tuesday night to hit 60,000 words for the month. I am pretty sure 1 can do that. Then I will have my “First First Draft” and it will be time to dig in and do a series of rewrites. I think, emphasis on think there will have something 1 sorta kinda will have something to show to close friends. Although why they will want to is a bit of a mystery. Heck, an intro I started with named three books to go read first. (only three?)

Keep on Trunkin’ Mike, do bear in mind I am retried. So it became my day job. And then my work took me from three to four, maybe five, hours a day to do. And, and this is a biggie, my wife was very supportive. Make that extremely supportive. Those two things really made it possible for me. I can see it for someone with a full-time job. Two and a half hours on workdays, eight to ten on weekends. Perhaps a well-planned book where “all” you need to do if you are going to do it, is fill in the blanks. Perhaps to use the advice of Anne-Marie NicLemore’s advice: don’t consider what you have written to be even a part of your finished book. It was something you wrote. Something you passed by on your way. Yes, it was part of what you wrote. It has little to do with your finished thing.

Hopefully, I will get this out of my system and on to the rest of my life.

MichaelRpdx :: h3k 2021-11-27

Turkeys Are Gone

Yeah, it is about time. The turkeys have come and gone and they will no longer be staring at me as I type each day! Hooray, hooray!

This month-long thing that I will not name is grinding me down. Yes,I did hit the 50,000 words. But, for some reason, I refused to give up Before the end of the month. The only difference is that I no longer will go to 2,000+ days a week. Now I just, or should I type “just” need to hit 1,667+ words a day. Only a few more, only a few.

We are watching Cowboy Bebop which came out in 1998 but, but, but Netflix has released a redo of Cowboy Bebop. With live-action people. It is slightly less risque. Less? Well Slightly. In either case, it is a lot of fun. Lots of fun.

I am plotting activities for December. One of the big lessons is my ability to spend four hours a day on “something”. So what I am doing in December will take up to four hours a day.

I can promise you it will not involve watching a TV or my screen.

MichaelRpdx :: h3k 2021-11-26

PS Grumpy old man moment here. Blake Black Friday? BAH! We did not even go to the library to pick up books. No, it is not Black Friday. There are plenty of days to get out of the way to spend time with your family.


Trying to not do things “because you should.” There are lots of things like that, like doing things because you should. Because it is the way. I got a cure of this way to go the way other people did thanks to music.

When you believe in things that you don’t understand,
Then You Suffer,
Superstition ain’t the way

I am pretty sure you recognize Stevie Wonder’s 1972 song there.

For me, these was a couple more lines that sealed it for me.

Very superstitious, wash your face and hands,
Rid me of the problem, do all that you can,

Don’t just wash your face and hands because you are told so. Get to understand it first.

Now is not the time to go into what I did and did not do thanks to being told to do or not do things. I had to figure it out for myself. Suffice to say I could have saved a lot of time by doing or not.

Right now I am taking advice, getting superstitious, on exercise. Exercise is good for you. Very good for you. Went to the rehab gym today. Going to go on Thursday. Do my workout go home. Feel exhausted.

Gonna keep this up again. Like I did in the early 2000s That was experience. Now I have to, I gotta do things.

All I need to do is make more things that I gotta do. So I get them done. Thanks for reading this.

MichaelRpdx :: h3k

Menudo, Not Posole

It was not posole. Not at all. They would not have wondered if I knew what posole was. No, it was not posole. It was Menudo. Menudo! The stuff is great, assuming you like it. (Yes, like all things it is good if you like it. I will get off the statement of the obvious. )

If you’re overthinking, write.
If you’re underthinking, read.
—— Mike Crittenden

I am trying to think a lot. A whole lot.

Fine art is the only teacher except torture.
—— Geroge Bernard Shaw

Who was paraphrased by a sculpture (assembliage?) from our Student Dean.

The greatest remedy for anger is delay.
—— Seneca

Because it sounds good.

Any word you have to hunt for in a thesaurus is the wrong word.
—— Stephen King

Which is a fine piece of advice to writers. One of many fine pieces he said. Oh, what the heck, a twofer from King.

If you don’t have time to read, you don’t have time (or tools) to write.
—- Stephen King

And a little from a guy who obsesses about Stoicisn.

There is no mastering something without first being bad at it.
—— Ryan Holliday

There are too many turkeys watching me today. Way too many.

—— MichaelRpdx :: h3k

Staring and Burgers

It is hard to type. Very hard to type with staring your way on its way. There are 43 turkeys staring at me. Tonight. And tomorrow. And the day after that until Thanksgiving arrives. I think. They may not leave quickly. They may stay the weekend. 42 of them, all staring at me.

In San Antonio, New Mexico, there is a bar and cafe that has been there since 1945. They serve, among many other things, what is, or perhaps was, the finest Green Chili Cheese Burger in the world. Better than the Owl Cafe in Albuquerque. Certainly, I had a few whenever my travels took me south (I lived in Albuquerque from 1985 until a day before 1990) I would have one. So that has been over 30 years and I still remember the Owl Bar & Cafe’s green chili cheese burgers. I cannot think of another burger or sandwich that sticks in my mind.

There are other foods I remember from New Mexico. The Frontier’s breakfast of which there were several things to have and none stood out. There was Fry Bread cooked in a cast iron skillet under the open sky in (sorry to say) a reservations food by the road. There was a question, a first for me, when I ordered chilie for lunch I was asked what kind I wanted. ?? Red or green? I had to answer green because I had never had it before. There was a place right around the corner, a Mexican place I usually had burritos there. But one day I ordered posole. “Do you know what it is?” Sure. They had me describe it. And then, only then, did they serve it to me. And it was free. They did not seem to believe that I liked it.

What a memory lane today.

——- MichaelRpdx :: h3k

Writing Awful, Very

To quote:

This book is for Anthony Neil Smith who taught
me how to be awful and own it. We don’t do
safe fiction up in here!
— Victor Gischler

That preface is to Gestapo Mars. On the back cover among other things, it is described as “Extraterrestrial Espionage with Sex, Violence, and Nazis.” The book, I do not dare to call it a novel, delivers on all promises. What stops me from calling it awful, shit or other things that I dare not put in print is I read the entire thing. Yes, it delivers sex. Yes, it delivers violence. Yes, it delivers Nazis. It delivers all of them, ALL of them in abundance. Especially the violence and Nazis.

There are plot holes that look like a baby crawling through, a grandmother tottering through a football team to score the winning, come from behind touchdown. The holes are that big. Carter Sloan comes through all of the holes, despite the ships and comrades he leaves behind.

But it is awful and there is a lesson there. As Austin Kleon and lots of other people have said: you need to do the bad things before you can do the good. If you are stuck with your protagonist not able to do what you want, have he/she do it anyway. This is fiction you are writing. Have your star Character do things that are out of character, that does not make sense, that are dumb (from the hero s perspective) Have them do that. You are still writing. You get to go back and rewrite it. And again, and again, But when you rewrite it you know what direction to avoid, what to have the hero do.

This is all how I keep up with my draft. I do not stop writing until I hit my daily goal. I know, I KNOW, a bunch of stuff won’t last. But it is out.

— MichaelRpdx :: h3k

PS. If you are participating in the thing whose name I will not type and you think or know you are too far behind to make the “goal”, Keep On Going. The idea is to write for a month. Maybe with a big goal. But truthfully the goal is to keep writing. Kinda like One Typed Page.

Writing That Which Will Not Be Named

Keep your fingers moving. Be specific. Lose control. Don’t think. Those four rules, or “rules”, are the basis of writing, according to Natalis Goldberg. (I keep trying to write Goldman, go figure.) Do not think about punctuation, spelling, or all that stuff. Just get it out.

I am most of the way through week one of the thing that will not be named. I have had two huge interruptions. One was being at the hospital for a nuclear based test. That started early, at 7:30 with no one else in the waiting room. It was a stress test. “Some people say they feel like they have run a marathon.” I did not feel that way. I got home, sat down, wrote 4700 words. Then I felt like I had done something, not a marathon, but it was something and I was tired.

The second time was when I was writing cancer memories. It was going slow. At breakfast, I was asked, “should we but up this tarp to protect the shed?” We needed to get the tarp onto the shed. A grapevine had its way with the roof, sending roots down through it. I looked up. It was a sunny day. Our forecast had been for rain. Rain all day. Rain all day every day for the next week. It was sunny now. “yes, we should.” and we did. We got the tarp on top of the shed. Then it was time to write and to write about things I really do not like remembering as vividly as 1 did this day. I looked up MOPP and the side effects and a “for 20 years there is a 20% chance…” When I was treated it had been in successful use for five years. This 20% over 20 years? That was still to be discovered. In fact, when I first heard about a 20% chance of developing a secondary cancer, it was over a 10 year span. But 1 found out about that side effect after they had just over 10 years. I did not know about the 20 year span until I was writing today. Lucky for me I did not get a secondary tumor. Now I am into different side effects.

I have kept my fingers moving, I do not think about spelling, too much, Specific? You can judge that. Lose control? I dunno. Do it, does I, do I lose control of my typewriter and let the keys do their thing? Ask it. I have kept up my pace. I still have enough stuff in my brain to type a single page or a part of a page after my 2,000+ words to keep to my goal.

—- MichaelRpdx :: h3k

PS You can name it if you like. I am just tired of typing the mixed case word.

Signing and Singing

Does your typewriter sign? Does it sign to the deaf?
Does your typewriter sing? Does it sing to you?

Can you hear the typewriter sign in and singing to all about?

This typewriter sings throughout the night and the day though I cannot hear it often. I cannot hear it singing at night or in the day.

Until. Until I sit with it and start to caress it.
When I caress its keys then I hear it cleanly.

I hear it clearly. And I type.
Were your fingers deaf? So deaf you could not hear your typewriter sign.
When you cannot hear it sign you must rely only upon its singing.

Upon the sticks of the keys pushing down the levers
through the body to spring the key head to strike
against the paper through silk or cotton or sometimes nothing at all.

What does your typewriter sign?
What does your typewriter sing?



— MichaelRpdx :: h3k

Three Responses and Some Blather

AP from Tacoma We are all joining the stream of our lives. It is good that you are intereted in history. Just plopping in and joining the conversation (??) works out just fine. Pho is, so far, a west coast stronghold. Though I just read a Duluth review of it. Very favorable. It is too bad their choices of cow parts is so limited. A PNW stronghold of One Typed Page-ers? I only count five people in that group. If a group is the right description.

The Who Was It? Who recommended: Kanopy. Oh yes, it is a gem of a place. We started with “Intelligent Trees”. Yes, a documentary. But the diversity of what they offer in easy to navigate groups is wonderfiul.

New ribbons coming for this typewriter (Hermes 3000) and my others. This seems a bit odd. The density of ink on the paper does not seem too bad. But, well, maybe it is the paper. The inkjet paper I buy because it feeds my printer and typewriter and I use more paper in the printer. What I use in typewriters is such a small amount I have not purchased paper just for it, for typewriting. (If you have thoughts on the matter I am listening.)

Writer of the Lucinda saga: (If “Lucinda Saga” is the right description) I greatly admire your hanging from the cliff end of the page work, It is not a lot to work with but each and every one gets to the end of a page and … well? What is next? So nice whoever you are.

Who decided to put ‘ and ” in a dedicated key to the right of ;/: key?

The typewriter gods decreed they should be above 2 and 8 and I still find them there. I often type @ and * when I mean ” and ‘. They are (were?) in convenient places on the keyboard. If you second on an instrument, with similar keys, like guitar and ukulele or clarinet and saxophone, this must be maddening.

Getting, getting ready for NaNoWriMo. My preparation is getting lists of things to type about. Not in the chroninolgy of the book To Be. Just daily things to do 2,000 (yes, I am aware I only need 1,667) words I can sort them out later. It is a First First Draft and so it will be. What scares me most is lacking in things to type about. Yes, I did do five consecutive days. Yet at the same time, I run up against not having ideas to type where? Here!. I mean what the hell? I sit in the morning and type out a bunch of words and then later not much comes from me. Perhaps because I am conscious of all of you seeing this. My morning words were to one person. In a week I will know if I need to have all of my First First Draft writing to one person. We will know in a week.

— MichaelRpdx :: h3k

The Way We Were

kanopy – what a great suggestion you made. I am sorry for not naming you, but … damn it looks great. Even with just six movies a month.

Remember when you had one, or perhaps two, movies to see at a time? We had one movie place, the Blue Fox, and that was it. It was where I first viewed “The Way We Were”, remember that? It holds up should you be so inclined. (I just spent time looking up 1973 movies. DANGER! Rabbit Holes Ahead! )

All first drafts of everything are garbage.
The first draft of everything is shit.
– Ernest Hemingway

Those are the alleged words, including an edit, from Ernest Hemingway. Everything I write for One Typed Page is a first draft. Just get it out. My college class in Logic leads me to conclude everything I put here is shit. At least I can get it for you wholesale.

Good night all.

-— MichaelRpdx :: h3k