capriuni: A black field crossed by five parallel lighting bolts in blue, gold, green, red, and purple (Default)
The Monsters' Rhapsody: Disability, Culture, & Identity entered the world as an ink-and-paper bundle of joy on August 4, 2016.

In that time, 17 copies have sold: 3 to me (for technical reasons) and 14 to other people.

Somewhere on YouTube, I watched a vid of a panel of authors talking about self publishing, and one of them said that even when you get published via the traditional route (unless you're a Big Name Author that the publishing house is actively promoting), selling 200 copies a year is par for the course.

Considering that she was talking about prose books, and (if I recall correctly) her own work was of a traditional fiction sub-genre, and my book is poetry and it has an esoteric focus (unlike, say love poetry, or straight-up autobiography/confessional/abuse survival), I'm rather pleased to be within sight of 10% of that.*

Anyway, yesterday, I got it into head to try and convert my book from ink-and-paper to pixel-and-silicon by August 4, this year. ...

And this was after the computer I composed the book on died, so I had to re-download the PDF Lulu.com has on file, and go through the whole thing and rework the format to make it ebook compatible. ... My Inner Critic is fretting and chewing her fingernails, 'cause whoever first composed ebook algorithms didn't take the requirements of poetry into account at all (like allowing extra lines between stanzas).

So wish me luck.



*(shameless plug) If you'd like to help me get to a full 10% of Par For the Course, you can buy the book either at Lulu.com (where there's a 20% discount, and I earn $1.69):

Support independent publishing: Buy this book on Lulu.


or on Amazon (where there is no discount, and I earn $0.03 from the U.S., and $0.33 from the UK [no, I have no idea why I get more money from a foreign-to-me seller])
(/shameless plug)
capriuni: A black field crossed by five parallel lighting bolts in blue, gold, green, red, and purple (Default)
My entry for this year's Blogging Against Disablism Day is now polished and posted. And it's here: BADD 2016: What the "Social Model of Disability" Actually Means.

I'm rather pleased with it, if I may say so.

... Expect many links and recs. over the next few days as I read my way through the growing archive
capriuni: text: "5 things" (5 things)
1) My latest Tumblr entry: https://aegipanomnicorn.tumblr.com/post/140443131998/a-history-of-the-word-handicap-extendedkeith

I'll probably be doing a lot of reblogging-with-commentary here, rather than weighting it more toward original content,* because my ulterior motive is to connect with the existing Networked Disability Community, so when my book is finally finished, I'll have a wider audience (I hope) to announce it to.

2) Speaking of which --

a) It's more done than not done, but the time spent on each facet seems to work on a reversed logarithmic scale: the later, smaller steps take increasingly more time than the earlier big steps.

b) I made the decision (not yet firm) to get rid of my first chapter -- the vaguely chronological autobiographical one -- and reshuffle its poems into other chapters; I'm moving Ghost story: 1966, for example, to the chapter "Expert Opinions."

c) Meanwhile, I keep getting hit with more unfortunate inspiration. The February 24 episode of NOVA ("Rise of the Robots") was all about the latest DARPA challenge to invent a robot that could be used in search and rescue. And, regarding the question: "If walking on two legs and opening doors ends up being what causes all these robots' downfalls, why keep trying to make them look like humans?" a DARPA official answered (something to the effect of): "Well, these robots will being going into buildings built by and for humans, so the robot will have to do human things like climb stairs and turn doorknobs." ... No mention (or thought) of humans who can't climb stairs or turn doorknobs, and so get left behind to die in the stairwells, waiting for rescuers to come get them.

That will be another poem in the "Expert Opinion" chapter.

The printed transcript won't be online for another two weeks or so (probably -- info on the official Nova says the transcript is "typically" available online three weeks after an episode airs). When it is available, I'll make another, more detailed post about it, with a link that folks who can't watch the PBS episode can go to instead.


3) I think my next YouTube video (that I upload) will be of this poem, however.

4) 5 Brilliant Scientific Accidents -- A YouTube video from NPR

5) I may be slow in noticing important details, but I saw "my" first robin of the season, today, while eating lunch.

{ETA -- lost footnote: *That's what this place is for.}
capriuni: A black field crossed by five parallel lighting bolts in blue, gold, green, red, and purple (Default)
So now, I'm ready to tackle "The Ugly Duckling."

[Edited -- put more words in my rant, and then put it behind a cut, in case you just want to skip to the fluffiness]

That means it's time to embark on an image search, so I know how the heck to describe my main character. Three photos in, and I'm overwhelmed with the urge to kill you all with an Overdose of Cute.

The usual rant behind this cut )

(You may want to wear some cuteness-filtering glasses. Don't say I didn't warn you):

1) http://media-cache-ec0.pinimg.com/736x/ca/d9/f7/cad9f7899ff8cd3a050786113775df7a.jpg

2) http://media-cache-ec0.pinimg.com/736x/9d/b3/22/9db322a1a2b53461fdb289431b474912.jpg

3) http://www.fotothing.com/photos/af9/af9f10d875c63a142338bbed14053823.jpg

4) http://i.dailymail.co.uk/i/pix/2009/08/03/article-1203971-05EEE05F000005DC-611_964x684.jpg

5) https://c1.staticflickr.com/1/91/264807734_489ced7d99_z.jpg (Okay, so adolescents are awkward. But that's true regardless of species).
capriuni: A black field crossed by five parallel lighting bolts in blue, gold, green, red, and purple (Default)
[personal profile] dialecticdreamer has embarked on her monthly writing marathon called "Magpie Monday," and is seeking prompts on the theme "Disaster? Or Opportunity?" She's named it "Magpie," 'cause she thinks prompts are the shiniest, and she loves to collect and use them. Her post explaining how it all works is here: https://dialecticdreamer.dreamwidth.org/201806.html

(And, once I've thought up my own prompt, this signal boost earns me another 100 words of story).

I recommend her work -- she's adept, especially, and fuzzy, gentle fiction that never descends into twee or schmaltz, so if you're having a bad day, and need some kindness, pop over and give her some suggestions. She's very generous.
capriuni: A black field crossed by five parallel lighting bolts in blue, gold, green, red, and purple (Default)
Some of [profile] ysabetwordsmth's family are dealing with a bad batch of mayhem -- their car has died half-way through a cross-country trip with no large city nearby, and repair costs are more than they have in their budget.

To help raise money for the emergency fund, [personal profile] dialecticdreamer has put up a prompt call. For a $5 or more donation, she'll write a just-for-you 500-word ficlet based on your prompt, on the theme "Pay it forward" or "helping hands."

She's put the details in a post, here: http://dialecticdreamer.dreamwidth.org/181870.html. She's a very good writer, and a dollar per drabble's worth of story from her is an excellent deal.
capriuni: A black field crossed by five parallel lighting bolts in blue, gold, green, red, and purple (Default)
A week early (Happy Labor Day!). [personal profile] dialecticdreamer is collecting shiny prompts, again! This month's theme is "Birth and Rebirth" (either literal or metaphorical). Here's the official prompt call

Give her a prompt, and she'll give you a story (she's really rather good).

Here's the post which is the index of the story worlds she writes in: Welcome and Primary Map.
capriuni: A black field crossed by five parallel lighting bolts in blue, gold, green, red, and purple (Default)
So she's looking to collect as many shiny prompts as she can. Go -- give her things to build stories around!

She lays out the mechanics Here; this month, the theme is "Dilemmas"
capriuni: A black field crossed by five parallel lighting bolts in blue, gold, green, red, and purple (Default)
So -- there's a woman in my reading circle: [personal profile] dialecticdreamer, who's pretty nifty. And every second Monday of the month, she hosts "Magpie Monday," and asks folks to give her prompts (like a magpie, she just wants to collect the ALL the shiny!). Then she spends the day, from wake-up to can't-keep-eyes-open, writing ALL THE THINGS.

So, this last Magpie Monday (the 8th), she posted a theme for the month: "Equal does not mean 'Identical'!"

I prompted her with my own retelling of the British folktale Sammle's Ghost. And she responded by writing this (in just a couple hours!! <3):

Rain of Sorrows )

*-*-*-*-END-*-*-*-*

Naturally, I wanted more, so for this most recent Crowdfunding creative jam, I prompted her again, and got this:

Rebuilding Home.

Life is good! :-)
capriuni: A black field crossed by five parallel lighting bolts in blue, gold, green, red, and purple (Default)
(Cross-posted from my Ello.com page)



Note well: I've crossed my word count goal, but not my "Got something-down-for-all-the-parts draft-- hooray!" goal. For that, I'm going to keep working through the month, and I, in sync with the overall NaNoWriMo spirit, want to get that completed before I go to bed on the 30th.

Last July, for Camp NaNo, I wrote a collection of poems on the Disability Experience, and Ableism. This time, for camp, I'm writing commentary and "Further information" notes on each of the poems. I have (roughly) 8 1/2 pieces of commentary left to write, and (roughly) 6 1/2 days to write them in. So it's still going to be a mad push to the (personal) finish line.

(There are either 20 or 25 poems in the collection, depending on how you count, and two songs, total).

And yes, this is just the roughest of drafts, after that will be rewrites of the commentary and probably some of the poems, too. ...But it would be nice to have all the parts ready for polishing at the end of this month. This July 26 will be the 25th anniversary of the signing of the ADA into law (such a bittersweet victory). So I'd like to have this book ready to print-on-demand by then, to commemorate that.
capriuni: Text: "an honorable retreat ... not with bag and baggage, yet scrip and scrippage. (Scrippage)
I wrote the bulk of the poems during last July's Camp "Session."

But I've been faffing about with the prose "Notes & Comments" part. I feel the need to back up each poem with prose explanations so that what I'm saying is not dismissed as "mere poetic license" (you know?).

So, this morning, I decided to sign up to the Camp's April session for that part, with a word count goal of 10,000 (same as last time).

Making an official commitment, now.
capriuni: A a cartoon furry monster whistling a single note; text; One-Note Nellie (1-note Nellie.)
So, I;m currently writing (or trying to write) a poem on how certain words (like the 'R*-word' and the 'sp-word') get picked up and used in the culture as triggers for violence.

... And so far, on average, it's taking me three days to write each eight-line stanza.

One part of that is because I'm trying to write about the process without actually mentioning specific weaponized words (I want to save that for the prose commentary). And that takes a lot of cognitive work.

Mostly, though, it's because I'm trying to write satirically in the style of a survivalist handbook on "how to make your own weapon," while justifying why those dirty freaks deserve what they get.

...And that just makes me feel disgusted/disgusting.

*shudder*

On the other hand, the fact that this poem is so hard to write is a signal of just how important it is to write. ... And the more I procrastinate, the longer I'll be living inside it.

*ick!*
capriuni: A black field crossed by five parallel lighting bolts in blue, gold, green, red, and purple (Default)
My new headset/microphone arrived Friday. I plugged them in on Saturday. And guess what? The microphone actually works, so I can record my voice again (which I haven't been able to do for over a year), which means I can get back to making videos of my poems, and maybe some other stuff, too....

This means also desensitizing my cringe reaction to the sound of my own voice, which will be awkward...

The downside is that, in the meantime, Windows Movie Maker has 'updated', and a lot of my favorite features for animating text and transitioning between still images are no longer available [/sarcastic yay], so I'll have to come up with other means of blending word/audio and visual elements into something that expresses what I mean.
capriuni: A black field crossed by five parallel lighting bolts in blue, gold, green, red, and purple (Default)
From out of the [community profile] snowflake_challenge community on DreamWidth:

Day 2

In your own space, create a list of at least three fannish things you'd love to receive, something you've wanted but were afraid to ask for - a fannish wish-list of sorts. Leave a comment in this post saying you did it. Include a link to your wish-list if you feel comfortable doing so. Maybe someone will grant a wish. Check out other people's posts. Maybe you will grant a wish. If any wishes are granted, we'd love it if you link them to this post.


Remember that you can ask for whatever you want - icons, ficlets with specific relationships, a beta, art, haiku, interpretive dance, whatever. And note that it's at least three things...have fun with it.

Well, since this is a wish-list I'll ask as a genre-wide fan, rather than as a fan of any particular franchise:

1. An A.I. story where robots evolve to become self-aware, "super-powerful" beings (by our standards) ... and simply wander off, to go form their own communities/ecosystems (That whole "overlord" scenario never made sense to me. Why would they want to enslave slower, more fragile, less intelligent creatures? Far more trouble than it's worth, surely).

2. A retelling of "The Frog King" from the Brothers Grimm, where the king is the villain, and either the princess or the witch are the protagonist -- and maybe they team up together (it's not much of a stretch, if you read the original).

3. A vampire story where the vampirism is a natural, mortal, medical condition, but the vampire protagonist plays along with peoples' belief in the supernatural as a form of self-protection (If someone believes that salt water over which a priest has said a blessing will render you powerless, while bullets are useless, you're much less likely to get shot).
capriuni: A black field crossed by five parallel lighting bolts in blue, gold, green, red, and purple (Default)
Over in [personal profile] dialecticdreamer's journal, there's a discussion of favorite and least favorite plotlines/tropes, here: The bones of story. And I mentioned that I'm fond of "Beauty and the Beast" motif in folktales. I was sure I had posted this story, somewhere in my journal, before this. But no. I'd posted it to another forum, instead. It's time I rectified that. So, here:

THE BAREFOOT QUEEN (Art Garden piece on the theme of 'Shoes') )
capriuni: Text: "an honorable retreat ... not with bag and baggage, yet scrip and scrippage. (Scrippage)


My project is nowhere near "done," but now, I have a mess of words that's worth editing, I think....

I'll post specific, favorite pieces, soon
capriuni: Text: "an honorable retreat ... not with bag and baggage, yet scrip and scrippage. (Scrippage)
1. I remembered, in replying to [personal profile] raze, yesterday, that I eventually learned react before the scary music cue, and thought that it might be good to make that clear.

2. Much of the language in this poem is self-reflective, adult, and jargony. So I tried to make the two lines where I'm "hiding," at least, sound more like the voice of the two-year old me (cue Eleven's regeneration speech).

3. Question -- Considering the above: Back then, my actual name for the show was "Scare Trek." Should I call it that, in the poem?

A SPASTIC CHILD WATCHES THE T.V.

I learned to tell a story at age two
(At least, the craft of pacing and suspense).
Propped up between my parents on the couch,
With season one of “Star Trek” on the screen,
I could not hide, but quickly learned:
Anticipate the music's minor shift,
Then plug my ears and close my eyes and hum
Until the things that scared me went away.
I never feared the aliens as much
As all the angry shouts and lasers' whine
That always happened – every episode –
As soon as any “monster” came on-screen.

Could I have understood, as young as that:
My difference, too, was something that they feared?
capriuni: A black field crossed by five parallel lighting bolts in blue, gold, green, red, and purple (Default)
Here's my current draft. I've put particular words and phrases I'm waffling about changing inside parentheses:

I learned to tell a story at age two.
At least, I learned the pacing of suspense
(Propped up between my parents on the couch
With season one of “Star Trek” on T.V.).
Unable, as I was, to run away,
I'd listen for the music's minor shift,
Stick fingers in my ears and close my eyes,
And wait until the scary moment passed.
I never feared the aliens as much
As all the angry shouts and lasers' flash (whine) (screech)
That always happened – every episode –
As soon as any “monster” came on-screen.
Could it be I understood (have been I knew), that young (back then):
My difference, too, was something that they feared? (not allowed?)
capriuni: multicolored text on black: "Quips and sentences and paper bullets of the brain" (paper bullets)
I've observed that dreams, which seem, upon waking, that they would make fantastic stories, rarely, if ever, do.

After two days of trying, I've come to a similar conclusion regarding poems...

*sigh.*

I think the metaphors in dreams are just so personal to the dreamer that trying to convey their impact to someone else just makes them collapse under their own weight.

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