Words of wisdom uttered by the members of the Not-A-Webring.
John Savage: "Unfortunately, it's not adviseable to put the formal name of Windycon 30 in this journal, because the number is in Roman numerals. Since the only pornography ever found here is discussion of obscene corporate behavior, I don't think that would work too well."
Jon Hansen: "Overdue Editors. They lurk out on the fringes, out past the mailbox, behind an array of Internet routers. They're in no hurry to contact me. It's more fun for them to wait and see if I, too, am waiting. I am. I always am. The trick is to not let on, just dance the dance. And go write something else."
Mike J. Jasper: "But here's the rub you end up working two jobs. One is the Day Job that pays the bills. The second is your real love, the fiction writing, but it rarely makes you much money, and if you're anything like me, that's where you devote most of your energy, instead of the Day Job. So the Day Job gets sort of back-burnered. It's a weird conundrum. There's the writing career which you'd do anything to make a success, then there's the other career which you have to have to pay the bills."
John Trey: "And it's probably pointless to bring this up here, but for those people who condescendingly proclaim ignorance of why anyone would want to keep an online journal or a blog, it's not about being so egotistical as to think that the minutiae of our personal lives are so fascinating or of such profound importance (or maybe it is for some people, I don't know—more power to them). Some people find it a convenient way to stay in touch, to commiserate, or to keep themselves motivated. If you don't understand or like that, them don't read them. No one is asking you to. And shut up about it. I don't understand why people would want to collect wooden shoes, or keep a pet komodo dragon, or dedicate their lives to computing pi to the billionth digit, but I'm not going to be all smug and superior about it because I don't do those things."
Samantha Ling: "So I sit here, surrounded by all my research material, surrounded by all my notes and I can do nothing but stare. Stare and wonder and hope, that eventually this stupid light will turn green. And I do need it to turn green and soon."
Linda J. Dunn: "...other writers have suggested that if people want to know if they'd enjoy their stories, they look at their journals as this shows their style of writing. I want to beg everyone to please believe me when I say that how I write is nothing like how I record a journal entry at 0500 hours (or earlier) in the morning while eating a bowl of granola. One reason I cut back on postings is because re-reading these entries makes me feel like the village idiot. Did I really misspell that word? Did I say there instead of their? What kind of illiterate writer am I? ... Then I began spending my normal writing time revising my journal entries to be witty and perfectly composed. You can probably guess what happened then: The time I spent writing journal entries and revising them was time that I was not spending writing."
Mike J. Jasper: "I can't believe I'm rambling about the motivations of fictional ghosts."
Linda J. Dunn: "I note that the war is not going the way I anticipated. A disturbed Muslim-American solder attacked his own comrades. A Patriot missile took out a British aircraft. On the other hand, we're half-way to Bagdad. I hope this is over soon."
Greg van Eekhout: "There's always someone suffering while you're having fun. Always. Not just in bombed-out city half a world away, but also in a hospital bed, just a mile or two from where you live. Cancel all the wars, send the soldiers home, release the white doves in the air, and there will still be someone in fear and pain while you're eating an ice cream cone. Always. That's the way the world is made."
Linda J. Dunn: "I do not understand the mentality of those who chose to voice their opinion by inconveniencing others. It's rude and inconsiderate and I think it's the wrong methodology to use to express an opinion. IMHO, they could have gotten just as much media attention by dressing up GI Joes and playing games in the park which demonstrated the tragic effects of the war."
Stephen Leigh: "The war's started... let's hope it's also mercifully quick... If we must go to war, then we should do all we can to win this as rapidly, decisively, and with as little loss of life to our soldiers and the civilians as possible."
John Savage: "For, in the end, the long-term evaluation of a book is usually based upon character, not upon the innovativeness of plot or sterling exposition or inventive environment."
John Sullivan: "If opinions are assholes in that everyone has one and they all smell, the Internet is essentially an opportunity for everyone to wave their butts in the air and shriek, 'Look, this is my asshole! My asshole is worth careful study because, unlike your asshole which just stinks, my asshole is the perfect asshole.'"
Caroline Austin Hazen: "It's in times like these when I would very much like to be able to shape the world to my own vision with just a thought. No wonder I like to write. I want things to be my way."
Jenn Reese: "And today, the land is caught in the memory of the rain."
Jenn Reese: "I've become utterly obsessed with checking online journals. You should all be updating two or three times an hour to accommodate my needs."
Tobias Buckell: "But only a writer could gain great success and still have rejecto-phobia. Only a writer. Indeed, what a strange sickness it is we have."
Greg van Eeekhout: "Guests slowly rousing from their slumbers, and I'm already dressed. I've already had coffee. I've already been out, and I've written. I would never describe myself as a morning person, because I love sleep so much, our bed is an island of comfort, but I understand the smugness of the morning person, knowing a colder, grayer world, which one can enter merely by tying one's shoes."
Tim Pratt: "Is there a movement? Maybe. Depends on how you define your terms. Mostly I look around, and see my friends and acquaintances doing amazing work -- fictional, poetical, critical, and editorial -- and feel the warm glow of inclusion. If we are a movement, we are a movement of beer, chicken wings, pretensions, ambitions, dancing, small press, big ideas, talent, contention, snobbishness, sparkles, black leather jackets with zippers, online exhortations, grumbles, impatience, dismissiveness, butterfly hair clips, stylistic excesses, bizarre cross-breedings and -fertilizations, unkempt hair, too much coffee too late at night, sitting in hallways, colonizing the darkest corners of bars, and working our asses off."
Stephen Leigh: "Saw a car yesterday with a roll of duct tape plastered to it rear window and a sign that said 'I'm Safe Now!'"
John Sullivan: "There's just something bizarre about seeing trophy wives from Potomac all upset because the Freshgo is out of duct tape. For Christ's sake, people."
Samantha Ling: "If dreams aren't going to be prophetic, then what good are they?!"
John Savage: "Intellectual property is the worst way to encourage the free creation and distribution of ideas. Except for all the others."
John Savage: "...the Mall is getting rather crowded, and there are other past conflicts not yet represented there with their own memorials. There is no space on the Mall or in this society for another long black wall."
John Trey: "What more insidious way to befuddle the poor rejectomancer that to combine the buzz-off rejection form with a kind comment?"
Neile Graham: "I wish the world really did owe me a living, or that it would pay us for what we really want to do. It's hard not to feel that anyone could do our jobs, but not anyone can write what we do."
Greg van Eeekhout: "In good fantasy, you get the sense that the author discovered the secret world, and that she's revealing it to you somehow. In Summerland, it feels made up. I see him sketching out maps, thinking up clever place names, combing his reference books for interesting tidbits of folklore and mythology. He's pulling impressive beasts from his sleeve, but I can see pockets sewn into his cuff."
Stephen Leigh: "To be harsh: if you don't burn with the desire to write that story, don't write it."
Tobias Buckell: "I spent the first 3 weeks playing Sid Meier's Civilization. I didn't sleep for days on end, and I think I remember hallucinating square pixelated phalanxes."
John Sullivan: "Hopefully they'll really get the guy soon and then we can go back to the normal routine of random violent deaths that we ignore every day."
John Savage: "The picture to the right is an excellent example of exactly why science fiction writers are considered a bit loopy."
John Savage: "The nicest thing I can say about MiniGeorge is that he's intellectually dishonest and morally bankrupt. I have some much nastier things I could say about him, but he's not worth the electrons."
Diana Rowland: "Hard to put on makeup in the morning when your eyes keep welling up.... Life goes on."
John Savage: "The proper label for "shitty pseudofiction driving out good fiction" isn't Gresham's Law; it's Grisham's Law."
John Savage: "One might argue that the "book report" method is, in fact, the single greatest impediment to understanding literature forced upon Americans by their education system. But I digress. like that's a surprise."
John Savage: "Send me your tired prose, your huddled manuscripts yearning to be seen, the wretched refuse of your teeming correspondence courses. Send these, the unpublishable, tempest-tost to me. I lift my leg outside the publishers'doors."
Erin Cashier Denton: "You reach into yourself, find a loose part (a character who won't shut up, a place with stories, an emotional experience,) and start yanking. You do it to yourself. No one makes you. And a lot of the time, it hurts, until you get to that endorphiny part where it doesn't anymore, and your brain convinces yourself that it feels good, and you begin the sick cycle of liking it."
Greg van Eekhout: "But no acceptance letters of late. Nor rejection letters. It's like phoning someone up for a date, only to hear on the other end of the line: '................' No? Yes? Oh god, just say something!"
Lazette Gifford: "Authors create new life with a few paragraphs, bring hope with a poem, and offer knowledge with an essay. The art of writing creates love eternal, a journey to the stars, or a flight on the wings of a dragon... Writers are the true magicians of the world."
Erin Cashier Denton: "It's like there's this wee door in my brain -- it's a Schrodinger thing. I don't know for sure if there's a new novel behind the door. I just trust that there is one."
Ron Collins: "Rewriting a novel is like playing one of those Whack-a-Mole games where every time you get rid of one rodent, another pops its head out of the hole across the table."
A. L. Sirois: "Remember that we as artists have a god-given gift, the most important and magical one in the universe: creativity. We are so lucky to be living here and now and to have minds that can soar to the stars and into the future and the past and return to tell the tales.... Don't ever stop telling those tales."
Stephen Leigh: "Writing within a confined 'box' can be a liberating experience. Sometimes, the less freedom you have, the more you learn."
Ron Collins: "We are like social air-traffic controllers in the sense that we have to learn to deal with a thousand different pieces of often-conflicting data from a thousand different directions. We have to deal with data that is incomplete and still make something relevant to our lives out of it.... In other words, we have to figure out the truth all by ourselves."
Greg van Eekhout: "Sometimes writing is hard because the part of my brain that chooses words and puts them in a particular order is out having a smoke somewhere, leaving me to make prose with Scrabble tiles containing only pictures of barnyard animals and fish."
Linda J. Dunn: "And why haven't we returned to the moon or gone on to Mars? Our government's adventures in space remind me of some aspiring writers who quit after selling a few stories because they've achieved what they set out to achieve and don't see any reason to keep going."
Lazette Gifford: "In other news -- well, when you write 10,000 words in one day you pretty much don't have time to have other news."
Greg van Eekhout: "Last year a friend of mine asked me why I hadn't already quit. I was taken aback by the question, and even a little offended. You don't quit something you're good at. You don't quit something that you've had success at. You don't quit something that, in large part, defines your very identity. . . . Why don't I quit? Because I'm a writer."
Ron Collins: "But why would you walk into this thing knowing how hard it's going to be, if you don't truly enjoy the process of putting your words on the page?"
John Trey: "So why haven't I quit? Because I haven't had my say just yet."
Ron Collins: "The right to say something does not protect you from the application of editorial guidelines."
Stephen Leigh (Mike Farrell): "There's no one Right Way."
John Sullivan: "I've decided there really are two camps this time around, but it's not what you might think. Instead it's people, across the world, who want to carry their faith in their hearts and live at peace in a secular society vs. people who want to reshape the world into their own vision no matter the cost."
John Trey: "I want that feeling of hope back. What I have instead is a real sense that I'm spinning my wheels with this whole writing thing."
Linda J. Dunn: "Writing has been very much a struggle since September 11, 2001. First, I felt too numb to write fiction and then I felt too guilty to write. . . . I thought I was alone in this problem, but I've since talked to over 50 other writers with the same response to the events of September 11th. We averaged about a week of numbness and then it came back in a rush or else we gradually wrote ourselves out of it. I'm still gradually writing myself out of this feeling of guilt for not having suffered enough. . . "
Tim Pratt: "I can see why people read such things; escapism is highly sought. But why would you spend months of your life writing something so easy and without real soul? I wouldn't do that, there are better things to do."
Erin Cashier Denton: "I'm at a weird point in my life. It's like a second puberty -- i know i'm not what i used to be, but i'm not sure at all what i'm becoming, and in general, it's quite uncomfortable."
Greg van Eekhout: "History tells us that in times of crisis, we are too willing to sacrifice the civil liberties that make us a great country."
Neile Graham: "We don't want to live through history. We don't want to see the world change like this."
Ron Collins: "My daughter has a $29 billion dollar heart."
Diana Rowland: "I got out of the car and just stood in the middle of the highway, head tilted back, starlight on my face and the moon just the thinnest dark-orange crescent still tangled in the trees on the horizon."
Tobias Buckell: "I suppose I should write down in my journal my thoughts about this week..."
John Savage: "I must find a way to distract myself from today's attacks, so I'm working on this journal."
A. L. Sirois: "Not a news photo. Not swiped from a web site. This was taken by my son, Daniel. He was downtown about 10 blocks south of the World Trade Center at New York University."
John Trey: "I don't know what comes next, in the grand scheme of things, but I'm not looking forward to it."
Lazette Gifford: "You can see amazing stuff in this world if you take a few minutes to look."
Michael Jasper: "I have a tendency to get "over-stimulated" sometimes, sort of like when I pet our cat Pumpkin for too long, and he tries to bite my hand off -- too much of a good thing, you know?"
Neile Graham: "Late at night the mind is open, the instincts open, things can arise from the subconscious, bubble up like boiling water. If you're like me, that helps the critical mind subside and the words come freely. Editing them stops mattering and what becomes important is the flow."
Linda J. Dunn: "My character is not happy with the author at the moment and is sulking in that hot, windowless room. She is thinking horrible thoughts about what she would do to the author if she were writing the story and the author were stuck in a hot, windowless room. In the meantime, the author is thinking about doing similar things to Bill Gates as she prepares to reboot."
Erin Cashier Denton: "I think what ticked me off the most was the 'Oh. You're _just_ the receptionist,' vibe i was getting off of people (and just when i'd started gaining the luster of a real accountant.) I found myself wanting to make a sign and hang it around my neck that would say: 'Hi, i know things, i almost got a degree in microbiology, i've written five books, and i'd kick your ass at Jeopardy.'"
Zette Gifford: "... this is how people control conversations that they don't like. They rant and scream about things that are, at best, tangential to the discussion until someone in authority can make certain no one talks about it, at least there."
Dorothy Rothschild: "The character has so little depth, you could blow on her and she'd slip away like a piece of tissue paper."
Stephen Leigh (Mike Farrell): "As I sat there watching, I wondered whether this might not be akin to seeing the first 'talkie'..."
Ron Collins: "A professional writer ... he's a regular, everyday human being who is pretty much like the rest of us. But there's a second side--the "darker" side for those who see it that way--to each of these pieces of a big name writer's persona. A professional writer sees every contact with another person as a possible sale. Sorry if that bursts your bubble."
Lazette Gifford: "We can live on the edge, and even live pretty well there, because we have lots of toys and entertainment to keep us from staring into the abyss."
Jenn Reese "Okay, I'm going to drown myself in darkness and start drinking. (No, actually I'm going to go see FINAL FANTASY. But the drinking part made me sound like a real writer.)"
Jenn Reese "...writing career... What other specter haunts us so ceaselessly?"
Caroline Austin Hazen: "Well, for me, naming is one of those Magic Writer Things. When you give a character the right name, it comes alive. It's like you've given it a soul, and now it lives and breathes on its own, beyond just simple words on a page. Without its name, the character is flat, and only one name - the right name - will do."
Samantha Ling: "This writing shit is hard."
Ron Collins: "I think I'll stop calling these things Novel Dares, and just call them Fast Drafts since that's what they are."
John Savage: "Remember, though, that good fiction and storytelling are, at their core, the use of lies to tell the Truth. Which perhaps explains why so many outrageous things that 'really happen' don't work in fiction, because by its very nature fiction requires more plausibility than life."
Stephen Leigh: "'Thou shalt not kill'... there are no qualifying phrases to the commandment -- no 'except in self-defense' or 'unless they try to kill you first' or 'unless it's to your political advantage' or 'unless you're ordered to do so by your government' or 'unless the person's an admitted mass-murderer.'... Actually, I notice that the commandment makes no distinction as to race or species, either. 'Thou shalt not kill.' Anything. Anytime. Period."
Ron Collins: "Maybe I'll do a 'Print' Dare next. I can just see it. A big banner over the top of the site--"10,000 words printed today." I'll call it Dare to be Courier. People will barrage me with e-mail telling me how it's not so good to print a novel so quickly, that the ink really needs time to set or else it will run when an editor picks it up."
Samantha Ling: "But talking to myself in my head, they don't see anybody, they don't hear anybody. I'm just sitting in the chair with my bib on and looking out the window. It's the borderline, is she crazy thing. Because it's okay to be outwardly crazy. People KNOW you're crazy. It's okay to be normal too. But when you're on the border, when people don't quite know, they feel very strange about you. They're uncomfortable about you. You either are or you aren't."
Jenn Reese: "I am one of the heathens who thinks that characters, plot, etc. are all completely under the author's control. My characters don't tell me what do as some other authors describe. No, they live under my iron grip and do whatever I say."
John Savage: "What I find puzzling is the affinity of middle-class Americans for societies with rigid social classes dominated by aristocracies built upon some form of primogeniture. Actually, it might well be sheer laziness, for there is one thing about these aristocracies that does seem naturally attractive: the heroes and heroines never go hungry. Again. They're born to their stations in life. They have no worries about what to do before their various acts of preordained heroism (or, as the case may be, villainy—it takes both sides to make even the usual appalling excuses for plots of these works)."
A.L. Sirois: "I don't really want to write any more of this hollow nonsense. I don't want to write commercial science fiction stories about people who are not somehow more a part of me. These are pathways that are better left to more capable explorers. I want to find the paths that only I can explore, for whatever reason.
Erin Cashier Denton: "Dream two was that i was the Important Fantasy Chick in a serious fantasy novel (actually, it was sort of akin to The Stand) with all these people willing to die for me to support my cause, and i knew we were going to triumph and all that. It was just very cool (not the people dying part, but you know what i mean.) Before my Master of Intelligence was killed, i got to look into the book he had. It's weird what your brain will make up inside books that you read in your dreams. There were pictures of precious stones, a frog carved out of ivory, and a picture of a Lapis Lazuli contraption, i don't know how big, labeled 'The Palotine. It must never be touched by the hands of man.' Weird, huh?"
Diana Rowland: "I'm fairly used to dead bodies by now. I've seen quite a number of them, and even the gory ones don't give me too much trouble.... The dead are easy. They're plastic. The living are hard. They're still real."
Neile Graham: "Such are the minutiae of my week. No revelations, no golden birds bursting beside me, but the webs of connection, the hints of sudden meaning. The curtain may be opaque but light sometimes passes through, however altered, however mystical."
Linda J. Dunn: "I've been told to make the software work on this computer before it goes out today. When finished, I will click my heels together three times to bring about world peace, a winning season for the Mets, and a calm temperment for Bobby Knight. Oh, hell! I might as well give myself a three books series with all of them on the best seller list as well. Anyone else want anything while I'm performing impossible tasks?"
John Sullivan: "Santa Claus. All the omniscence and omnipresence of God. All he lacks is the omnipotence. And he's a lot less threatening. To my knowledge, nobody has ever been tortured to death in the name of Santa Claus."
John Sullivan: "What the hell is this all about? Is this some sinister government plan to convince people they can fight bears so we'll all go off into the woods and get mauled to death? Is there some kind of airborne "messing with bears virus" spreading through America's ad agencies?"
Ron Collins: "Made good progress in getting the novel organized and started. It's still very much in that anxious early period where it feels like you're at the center of a huge field of snow. The possibilities are endless, and it's so perfect you don't want to take a step for fear of breaking the white plane of perfection. Yet you still have to take steps or nothing gets done."
Stephen Leigh: "Sometimes we teach by example. Sometimes we realize that our examples aren't so hot..."
Linda J. Dunn: "I thought I escaped poverty, but I haven't. Poverty is still all around me. I'm just no longer in the trenches, fighting the battle."
John Sullivan: "So anyway, that's what's going on. Only another two weeks or so until the world ends, finally settling once and for all that thing about 2001 being the millennium instead of 2000. See you there."
Diana Rowland: "And I realized the other day that the only single guy I know who has a job, who isn't a complete loser, who is reasonably good looking and not totally out of shape, who still has most of his teeth, and is intelligent enough to carry on a conversation... is my ex-husband. Sheesh. There's just no hope for me."
Steven desJardins: "I type this because I cannot sleep. There is an emptiness where once there was faith. Faith in a dream, a conviction that the dream was reality. I still believe in the dream, but now it has become a thing to be attained, a goal in this darkest hour seems impossibly distant. In the morning I may see hope. I may find the strength to pursue this dream, to speak in favor of democracy, to encourage all those I encounter to see the dream and fight with me to attain it. I know I will find others who share this dream. But for now I can only mourn for that which was, and now is not."
A. L. Sirois: "I'm a very good writer, artist and musician, and it seems like I ought to be able to rise above the pack to a greater extent than I currently do. The best way to do that is by calling more attention to myself. And that, children, is what I shall be endeavoring to do in the coming millennium."
Ron Collins: "I love that no two success stories are the same. But in some ways, most successes are the same--especially long-term successes. They are the same in that they are made up of a string of micro successes, small things that go 'right' -- or at least 'right' enough to push you along the path to the major success. Who knows why it works this way? It just does. It's quantum theory applied to sociology."
Zette Gifford: "Nothing at all to say today."
Stephen Leigh: "It's a wonder that a writer ever finishes any story... No, delete that sentence."
Linda J. Dunn: "Once you've figured out what methodology works best for you, STOP LOOKING OVER YOUR SHOULDER TO SEE HOW EVERYONE ELSE DOES IT."
Caroline Austin Hazen: "Sometimes I feel like story creation is like a modified version of duck-duck-goose. You're just going along picking up bits and pieces of the story, sometimes little plot twists, sometimes big character epiphanies - duck, duck, duck, duck - and then suddenly, entirely out of the blue, the one thing that you didn't even know was missing (though you knew that something was) hits you on the head - goose! - and you've got a complete story."
Caroline Austin Hazen: "I have too many stories in my head, all of them wonderful (you see, they haven't yet been written and so have not been judged in the cold light of day and the harsh reality of words fixed on a page - they are still dream children, still blooming in my imagination, still full of promise and hope of fullness and perfection); how do I choose?"
Myke Cole: "You make a decision in your life to put the pursuit of wonder on the back-burner."
Stephen Leigh: "We should be looking for ways to take the 'skeleton', the framework of the genre, and find new ways in which to rearrange it, to wrap and present the core. This requires being willing to fail. It requires experimentation, and it requires a whole hell of a lot more work than simply 'juggling.'"
John Sullivan: "I'm not saying the publishing industry shouldn't properly be concerned with profitability by any means, but they could take a longer view. And an optimized content filter instead of an incidental one might be better for all of us."
A. L. Sirois: "...I do not work really well by strictly adhering to my outlines. What I do well is to get into the story and just wail. At its best, in the act, writing is like riffing. A riff, in jazz, can be a long melodic line that starts out in one direction but ends up in another -- just as valid, but maybe more surprising to those involved -- including the writer. The unforeseen happens. Thoughts and feelings attract others. Everything can change. A sentence can change a book. This is the stuff you didn't expect -- and can't allow for in an outline."
Caroline Austin Hazen: "I love the feeling of my mind working so perfectly that I can almost feel the thoughts streaming through my veins and out of my fingers."
John Savage: "Dissent is meaningless when it remains silent. Without dissent, there is no room for literature."
Linda J. Dunn: "The story, after all, is the cruical element. Prose is just the delivery element. [But I still think I'd rather make deliveries in a Ferrari than a beat-up pickup truck.]"
Nikki Burris: "So there I was, hair blowing wildly around my face, eyes (and probably mouth, I don't know) stuck wide open, staring. A couple of raindrops pelted around me, and lightning flashed to the northwest, and I just stood. The wall cloud (one of the most expansive and absolutely perfectly exemplifying what a wall cloud should be ones that I've ever seen) hung there in front of me, with peaks poking downward here and there. Pointed bits of cloud dipping down and it was as if you could see them reaching... grasping for neighboring bits in hopes of joining into a spiral.... A tornado wanted to form. Badly. It was as if I could feel its need, its desire to come to life.... To destroy."
Linda J. Dunn: "I have about half a dozen stories shouting at me and I now have a term for this condition: A noisy head. Yes. That's IT! My head is always full of distractions and things and characters and it's much like trying to hear in a room when everyone is trying to shout at once. I need to get them to SHUT UP and QUEUE UP! One at a time, please."
Linda J. Dunn: "Publication credits mean nothing when compared to the cold reality of skill and technique staring out from a page."
John Sullivan: "Look at it this way: as long as I'm talking about ninjas, things probably haven't completely derailed."
Stephen Leigh: "Sometimes, when we make assumptions, we find that we have our heads firmly shoved up our rears."
Neile Graham: "But humans themselves can be the least human thing you can imagine. The varieties in our cultures--and even just the way some people in your own culture think. I read letters to the editor in the local paper and I can't believe that people can think that way--people who live in the same city I do. That scares me almost as much as clowns do. People who almost understand things. Almost have the same life as me. Almost come from where I do. Who believe something I almost could have once. The scary life I could almost have lived."
John Savage: "That's the way you do it / Music for nothin' and the books for free . . ."
Ron Collins: "So, I asked myself: 'Self, what is this story about?'"
Stephen Leigh: "If you could somehow convince me that nothing I ever write henceforth would ever see print, that no one but me would ever see the words I'd be writing, then I don't know that I could honestly say 'hey, I'll write this stuff anyway.' Even though I'm ultimately the audience I want to please, the sound of my own hands clapping alone is, well, literary masturbation...... But you couldn't convince me that nothing I write in the future will ever sell. It's not possible. I won't believe it. I can't believe it."
Erin Cashier Denton: "I was free, because when it came down to it, when I stopped worrying about other people and thought about myself, my wants, needs, and desires, I had lived my life up to that point regretless."
Dawn Pasley: "Writing doesn't have to be perfect, it can't ever be. It just has to be good enough."
Linda J. Dunn: "And for anyone out there reading this who is wishing for something: Be very, very careful how you phrase those wishes. If necessary, find a copy editor."
Nikki Burris: "I know that I'll never be a born-again anything unless someone shoves me back into a uterus and manages to pull me back out through a birth canal."
Linda J. Dunn: "I also hate it when science facts get in the way of what I thought would be a good story.... Magic bends. Physics is inflexible."
Samantha Ling: "You ever wonder how people can wear the buttflossing underwear? It's because they get used to having a wedgie."
Stephen Leigh: "We're given our single and permanent instrument at birth. Time and experience work on it, shape it, tune it. And, as with music, practice and practice and more practice gives us facility. Work hard enough, and you can make the instrument -- your talent -- sound as good as it's possible to sound."
Samantha Ling: "I AM talented. You betcha somebody's gonna hear about that. And they're all gonna fight over me. Fucking, I feel better now."
Tamela Viglione: "I have a fascination for the flip sides of coins. While I have no problem choosing which side of the coin I stand on, I seem incapable of not attempting to understand the place I'm not in...a trait sometimes known as 'empathy....'"
John Savage: "...separating the script from the other aspects of a dramatic production is not very intellectually honest, if even possible—rather like praising a short story as excellent on the basis of exceptional typography."
Nikki Burris: "If I weren't so creeped out at the thought of slow decomposition and being food for slimy, crawly creatures that I can't stand the thought of burial, I'd want to be surrounded by something like that. Rivers of mercury and the heavens of jewels. Nice."
Nikki Burris: "The perfect word has the power to take you on a trip through space, through time, through emotional highs and lows. It can even take you all the way to a little satellite operations room."
Stephen Leigh: "The thing to remember about covers is that it doesn't matter what the hell they look like as long as they make someone pick up the book and buy it. "
Neile Graham: "Taste is such a strange thing."
Myke Cole: "Because faith in the broader sense means just that, letting go of reason and rationale, trusting your gut, listening to the G-d inside of you."
Chiara Shah: "I am woman. I am sexy. And I'm in love with myself!"
Zette Gifford: "Sometimes it's frightening how fast a perfect moment can pass. If you're not looking, what do you miss?"
Linda J. Dunn: "Everything can be boiled down to a stupid-sounding sentence."
Chiara Shah: "I'm ready for a belly. Bring it on!"
Stephen Leigh: "The wave of time tosses us onward, uncaring, and the only reality is that -- when the wave has carried us as far as it will take us -- we'll look around and mutter: 'Oh, man... Life is such a beach.'"
Dawn Pasley: "Hopefully the Y2K bug won't be too bad that we all can't log back on come 2000. Sometimes I think it will be disastrous and sometimes I think how silly we all are being about it all. I guess we'll know come Saturday morning. :) "
Terry Kanago: "I grew up with a beautiful portrait of Jesus on the wall of my parents' home, painted by my grandmother. Black hair, prominent nose, dark skin, weary heavy-lidded eyes -- Jesus was a Middle Eastern man of sorrows. For years I wondered who that blonde guy with the halo was on the walls of my Sunday School room."
Steven desJardins: "I agree that preaching is boring when done badly, but what isn't?"
Dorothy Rothschild: "Finally: I've decided I'm going to have a completed draft of the novel by the millennium. It will be drek and it will be all of 54 pages, but it will be psychologically so much of an advantage to have it drafted that the rest of the angst can wait."
Stephen Leigh: "Choices..... Either way, we had to deal with the eggs on the floor. Either way, the deed was done: the eggs broken and the mess created. Either way, the floor had to be cleaned up and washed. We could do it with angry words and resentment, or we could do it with laughter. Either way... "
A. L. Sirois: "I'm identifying review sites on the web -- man, it's like electronic popcorn out there on the web. Bing! Bing! Bing! "
Tamela Viglione: "As I sped over to my sister's place, it felt at times, on those very, very dark country roads and steep hills, that at times I was literally about to fly into the horizon."
Linda J. Dunn: "I wonder if a gynecologist has ever accidently taken a pap smear from his wife."
Nikki Burris: "Why is it that when you're a kid, dandelions are pretty flowers that are fun to blow, and when you grow up they suddenly become "weeds?" Where are all the dandelion gardens?"
Jon Hansen: "And as far as writing rules go, the only rule I follow is spell everything correctly."
Stephen Leigh: "The real secret is this: Follow the rules, and you'll probably write something publishable; follow the rules, and you'll also never write anything great or memorable. Break the rules, and you can write a masterpiece that the world will envy; break the rules, and you may also never get published at all."
Ron Collins: "Structure is a mannequin that we use to throw our stories against, whether they be our silken finest or made of rugged burlap."
Tippi N. Blevins: "The world better not come to a fiery cataclysmic end. I'd be so ticked off."
Linda J. Dunn: "Ron is production-driven and given to making plans and sticking to them. I read his entry and the image that popped into my mind was Ron Collins dressed as Marie Antionette -- white hair piled three feet high above his head in the fashion of that day -- shouting, Let them eat cake!. I grumbled about this for a bit, wondering where on the fact of this Earth he came up with the idea that life worked in such a structured manner and then remembered that once upon a time, my life was also orderly."
Dorothy Rothschild: "Ever feel that the loop you're out of is really a Moebius strip?"
John Sullivan: "People crap a lot more when the world's ending."
Terry Kanago: "Last week I went to the hair dresser for a 'little trim.' It's a good thing she doesn't do circumcisions; she lopped off 3 inches."
Zette Gifford: "Across the street someone stuck his head out of the car, put both hands to his ears, wiggled his fingers and made faces at us. It was the chief of police..."
Steven desJardins: "My new carpets look good, except for one problem: they have fuzz all over them. Periodically I scuff the carpet with my feet to roll the fuzz up into little clumps, which I throw out. I figured that when the carpet comes out of the factory there must be all these tiny mini-threads buried in the nap that work their way out as I walk on it and turn into fuzz. Except I've been getting rid of the fuzz for a while now and it keeps coming back. So after I wrote tonight's entry I finally realized that it isn't the carpet at all: I've spent the last four months walking on teddy bear crap."
Lorrie Kralka: "I finally finished up designing the pantheon for one of my worlds yesterday, assigning names and all that jazz to every god. Base number of worshippers will be figured out as needed in the stories, but I did organize them from most important to least important, so I have a milestone. I know which gods will have the most worshippers and which will have the least, so I'm all set there."
Stephen Leigh: "That's the essential role of a writer: you slice out a piece of yourself and slap it down on the desk in front of you."
John Aegard: "Bite me, Nostradamus."
Linda J. Dunn: "One of the things I love about fiction is that I can always revise. Life is all first draft and there are no editors."
Tippi N. Blevins: "What do guitar solos and sex scenes have in common? Sometimes, they both seem totally gratuitous and pop up in the middle of nowhere."
Chiara Shah: "I've learned my lesson -- no more sniffing fire."
Tippi N. Blevins: "Writing a short story is like running to the store to get some milk. Writing a novel is like driving out to the farm, milking the cow, driving back home, realizing you got some cow hairs in the milk, and having to start all over again."
Zette Gifford: "They're talking about kids and growing up and I keep thinking things like, 'Yeah, but if I cut the first half of the last chapter, that's probably another 1000 words gone!'"
Linda J. Dunn: "Typing 80,000 words doesn't make you a novelist any more than going into the garage makes you a car."
Zette Gifford: "I had gotten my first 35mm camera (Pentax K1000) and began really enjoying the fine art of bird watching. But I didn't know the names of birds. We kept seeing these nice looking black birds with red wings but I had no idea what they were. We finally invested in a very nice set of Audubon Society Field Guides. I looked the bird up and learned that it was called -- a red-winged black bird."
John Sullivan: "I've pretty much decided the government should ship nuclear waste to Adventures of Sword and Sorcery because by the time it comes back it will be safe."
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Since January 1, 1999, we've had 12645 visitors.
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Since January 1, 1999, we've had 12645 visitors.
Not-A-Webring (TM) Logo courtesy of John Aegard.