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  1. #1131
    Bel-Cam Jos, I was a winner of the Academic Decathalon in Jr High and High School both - and both times for my writing / essay contest.

    Duh. I'm a writer. So some people think I'm pretty good. Or thought so once anyway.

    Actually, since my parents have both died, I had come across my medals from the Academic Decathalons that my parents had saved. I won some for some other subjects, too - but I don't remember which. I'd have to go look. But I took the gold (first place) for my writing every time (not exagerating).

    Anyway, what do I do with that stuff? I don't really need to keep it. It made my parents proud and I'm not really going to have kids to show them to anyway. I've just felt troubled about throwing them away, ya know?

    On the other hand, there are group pictures of my Jr. High and High School teams that I'm in standing next to one of the prettiest girls in my respective schools. We were always on the teams together and I used to love looking up her skirt and she knew it and let me. It is one of my fondest memories from my grammar school days over Academic Decathalons, sports, dances, etc. Oh I did manage to go out with her and "run around the horn," but just the fact that we fooled around DURING school hours was awesome!

    I want to save those pictures but I don't know if it's perverted. She is the same age as I am today, and we're actually still friends, but I'm digging her Jr. High picture because of the memories....Hmmmm. Do I need an ankle bracelet? (or a long trench coat and a hallpass?)

    Anyway, this girl was really smart too. We competed with each other to graduate at the top of our classes. She won as I gave more time over to working for money so I could afford to take her out. I should have figured that she was only dating me to sabotage me!

    Hmmm. Switching over to Facebook in a sec to ask her. That's a question from out of the blue and over 20 years ago, huh?
    BAD Pts Need: R5-C7 lf leg (x2), , R4-P44 right leg BAD Pts Offered For Trade: PM me - I have lots of parts now including BG-J38!. New Kyle Katarn is also available.

  2. #1132
    Did some messing around on the interwebs, watched some tv, did laundry, went out to eat with a buddy of mine.

  3. #1133
    Another Saturday without sleeping in. Drove out to a writing conference (fastest arrival time ever to UC Riverside: under 30 minutes, including a surface street detour due to a closed transition ramp) with three colleagues; met up with three others there. Enjoyed the conversations and presentations; read a short piece of mine in their end-of-the-day Authors' Chair open mic. Won a B&N gift card in their raffle, and proceeded to use up some of the balance on the way home. Once home, dinner. Then graded some, read a little, watched a tad o' TV, zonked out around 9pm. See if any of you gangstas out there will understand this knowledge: "I didn't even have to use my A-K..." :word:
    "I went to Star Wars Celebration VII in Anaheim, and I didn't get even a lousy t-shirt."

  4. #1134
    Gathered this 'n' that for taxes and started working on the process...

    "Ask not what your country can do for you....ask what you can do for your country"
    ¡Que la fuerza te acompañe!

  5. #1135
    Bel-Cam Jos: tell us more about your writing and the writers' conference or PM me.

    We've got some similar priorities. What are you writing?

    I worked on the City Council special election campaign yesterday. I'm invited to a super bowl party today, but I am probably just going to work on my writing as I have a free day with no campaign responsibilities and it's quiet here. I think the Super Bowl parties are elsewhere for the most part and I will be able to concentrate. I need silence to write although I make a rock soundtrack to my fiction novels (in the spirit of Top Gun and Miami Vice - as I love that style).

    I generally don't listen to it when I'm writing per se, but sort of: before and during breaks when I'm writing a scene when I want to get "that feeling" for my scene.

    "In The Air Tonight" by Phil Collins is a very cliche choice since Miami Vice - but they didn't actually (Michael Mann) use it that well. During it's play, Crockett phones his ex-wife, knowing the confrontation with the drug dealers (who they actually fail to stop by the end of the pilot episode) could turn deadly.

    Now Tubbs has greater motivation in that part of the Miami Vice story, as the dealer killed his brother who he impersonated to come down from New York and get on the Vice investigation in Miami. I think when the song reaches the crescendo, Tubbs should have murdered the dealer in cold blood (Crockett eventually does in a 2nd season episode and on a beach in the Caribbean). But when Tubbs should have riddled this guy with "an extended clip magazine's worth of bullets from his Baretta, Crockett could have covered it up for him, as vigilante justice!

    Anyway, when I was a kid I played with my toys creating a complex plot for them. I used "In The Air Tonight" when Optimus Prime had enough and completely destroyed Galvatron - yes Galvatron because Megatron had to have enough of him left to become Galvatron in those days (80's) and Prime finally had enough (after being brought back by the Matrix as the show's continuity did for him since everyone hated Rodimus Prime anyway).

    Well, others here like JediTricks hated the way Michael Bay made Prime a destroyer who wasted Demolisher in ROTF and finally tore Megatron apart and crushed all the pieces in DOTM which I think JT claims he never watched (though I don't believe that - it's a Transformers movie!) Anyway, I wrote that scene (but of Galvatron's destruction and the war's end) in the 1980's so naturally I thought it was awesome when Michael Bay and Orci / Kurtzman did it for DOTM.

    My current novels are always about what it takes to make a good person go bad (in fact, I'm happier myself now that I've turned to the Dark Side).

    But when I wrote to "In The Air Tonight," my (once-at-the-beginning) good guy, empties two six-shooters (12 bullets) almost - as I think he killed two men before this - into the bad guy and slays him in cold blood as there was never a trial (true history as my bad guy worked for Secretary of War James Buchannon Floyd who was never brought to trial for using US taxpayers' dollars to buy and transfer arms to South Carolina which ended up in Fort Sumter for use by the Rebels - historical fact!) So after all the other crimes, murders, and lack of response by the forces of "justice" that were supposed to be brought by Lincoln's government, my character takes matters into his own hands.

    And yeah, I know how that re-characterizes Optimus Prime when he tears apart Megatron in DOTM - and it SOOOO NEEDED to be done!

    Anyway, while I'm actually writing the scene I don't play the music (maybe while I'm editing it) but before and after and when I pause it.

    The song is very cliche and unoriginal, but I'm saying and telling new and hopefully original things in the story, so the cliche grounds my audience just like using beasts of burden (dewbacks and eopiees) in Star Wars does.

    Anyway, creating and writing is a lot of fun - why I probably won't watch much of the super bowl. My characters go way further than 100 yards! (though I eventually am planning to write a football story)
    BAD Pts Need: R5-C7 lf leg (x2), , R4-P44 right leg BAD Pts Offered For Trade: PM me - I have lots of parts now including BG-J38!. New Kyle Katarn is also available.

  6. #1136
    The Inland Area Writing Project (IAWP) is the Riverside chapter of the CA Writing Project, a 40-year organization to teach teachers to help their students with writing and general teaching techniques (there's a US organization too: the National Writing Project) by sharing best practices, resources, materials, collaborations, methods, and ideas. I've been a part of them since 2003 (wow; hard to believe this is the 10th year for me). I also am on the focus group board for writing academies/camps for students.
    "I went to Star Wars Celebration VII in Anaheim, and I didn't get even a lousy t-shirt."

  7. #1137
    Bel-Cam, I would one day like to teach writing techniques at conferences but always felt like I need to be a successful author first.

    Some things I do:

    1. Outline

    2. make a calendar of every day of the week for the month and specific year your story is set in. For example, September 11th in 2016 falls on a Sunday. I have events occuring then in my story. I've mapped out on a desk blotter calendar (I made from poster boards) August, September, October, November, December and January 2017.

    2a) plot your outline on the calendar. Use a different color pen for each of your major characters and one for "b and c characters" so you know where they are and what they are doing each day of your story.

    3). type in different color fonts and write your favorite scenes first - my first scene I wrote came from the middle of my book. I worked around that creating the build-up and the proceeding consequences of that action to a larger climax (a revenge motivation for one of my characters) by writing around my red text. Rarely can someone write a story from "Once upon a time" to "The End." My technique pretty much eliminates writers' block.

    And I have a lot of other techniques I can share that have worked for me - including writing to a musical soundtrack as we discussed "In The Air Tonight" above as applied to an aggravated murder assault by a good character who "had enough" and finishes it with much anger and impatience and no honor left to speak of. (How I'd tell the Cybertronian War story with Optimus Prime having to act like Megatron in order to finally stop him - which is anethema to some fans like JediTricks once related something I thought sounded like he was opposed to that kind of character growth for Optimus - "growth" does not necessarily mean an improvement of one's noble character - it just means growing into something different.

    Ah - and character "journeys" like the Joseph Campbell "Hero's Journey" that a guy named Bel-Cam Jos would probably be familiar with

    Anyway, if my 2 cents as a writer (or my visions from the Dark Side of the Force) are worth anything to you.

    If not I'll choke you with my thought-powers and suspend you in the air by telekinesis while I incinerate your body with Dark Side Force lightning.

    J/K - don't want to do that to you, dude. But it would be great to have that power and find someone that it deserves being done to!
    BAD Pts Need: R5-C7 lf leg (x2), , R4-P44 right leg BAD Pts Offered For Trade: PM me - I have lots of parts now including BG-J38!. New Kyle Katarn is also available.

  8. #1138
    I had a doctor's appointment in the morning followed by a dentist appointment in the afternoon.

  9. #1139
    Quote Originally Posted by figrin bran View Post
    I had a doctor's appointment in the morning followed by a dentist appointment in the afternoon.
    I figured you were out celebrating getting the 1138th post in this thread, fb!
    "I went to Star Wars Celebration VII in Anaheim, and I didn't get even a lousy t-shirt."

  10. #1140
    Screwed around wasting time doing nothing all that productive, read, napped, interwebbed. Then went to a bachelor party but had to cut out early because I had to get up super early for work on Sunday.


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