Category Archives: Writing

The first rule.

Blogging should be like Fight Club, where the first rule is you don’t talk about it.

But I’ll go ahead and talk about it, mostly to say that you should never believe me when I say I’m going to blog a lot.

Oh, I had good intentions.


You know what they say about good intentions. (Image: Shutterstock)

But life got in the way. I’ll spare you the details of how a long-standing health mystery was finally diagnosed and instead dispense only the good news that I appear to have found a nifty job of the 40-hour-per-week variety, so that has taken much of my time. It has been a bit of an adjustment, too, being that I was used to hitting the hay whenever I felt like it and now I’m on a schedule.

I’ve also rediscovered the joys of being out among the living, namely a series of respiratory bugs the likes of which I have not had in 7 or 8 years. I’m recovering from one right now.

Only 180 left.

Only 180 cough drops left. I hope I make it.


I still have plans to write a trashy novel under a pseudonym, slap it up on Amazon, and travel the world on the proceeds. It could happen! I might only get as far as Baltimore, but it could definitely happen.

I’m not sure what it will be about, but this much I know: I shan’t debase myself far enough to write monster erotica. A few years ago, there was much ado about the Virginia housewife who made $30,000 a month writing Yeti porn, and I’ve since learned that if you pick a beastie, any beastie, someone, somewhere, has written a series of “erotic” novels about it: minotaurs, centaurs, mermen, cyclops, kraken, gargoyles, leprechauns (that one might be about an ex of mine), orcs, dinosaurs, even aliens posing as jungle tentacle plants.

Just, no.

It does get me thinking, however. Clearly there’s an audience for that stuff. Someone reads it. Someone pays to read it. Maybe not much, three bucks max, but they spend real money on it, so it has some value beyond curiosity. People even review it and give it five stars. How hard can it be?

Except, see, I know myself. I know that once I start writing, I’ll get hung up on setting, character development, symbolism, and plot. I’ll want it to work, with no inconsistencies, no gaps, no place where a reader can say, “Wait, how did this character know that?” or “No, that couldn’t be possible because two chapters ago that character was somewhere else.” Then before you know it I’ll be writing a novel I’d want my name on that just happened to have a few sexy scenes. I’d be all literary and stuff, and it would take a year of research, three years of writing, another year of editing, and another year or two of overcoming crippling self-doubt before I even consider publishing it.

Even worse, people would know what I was doing throughout the process because such self-torture does not go without notice or discussion. They’d ask me how it’s going because they would want to read it, and then of course I’d never finish it because I’d hate to disappoint anyone—and that defeats the purpose entirely.

So maybe the first rule of writing trash should be the same as the first rule of blogging, which should be the same as the first rule of Fight Club.

Don’t talk about it.

Holidailies 2016!

Okay, so Horrordailies didn’t work out so well for me. I feel guilt. I feel shame. I hang my head low and sigh.


But Holidailies? It’s on.

And already I’m stealing an idea from a fellow blogger, Mary of the Red Nose, and doing a general introduction with 10 things about me, glorious me! (“Mary of the Red Nose.” Sounds saintly, heh!)

1. I’m a writer. A freelance journalist to be exact. Health, because basically I didn’t do so well in biochemistry in high school so med school was out.

2. I have a bird. Look at this sweet face.

Inigo the Nanner King

Inigo the Nanner King

Do not let him fool you. He can be a little devil.

Handsome little devil, eh?

Handsome, if soggy, little devil, eh?

Don’t mind the watermark. That’s his Instagram handle.

3. I’m a vegetarian. I guess technically you could call me a lacto-ovo-pescatarian, but I’m doing my best to work dairy and eggs out of my diet and seafood is generally my “going out” food if none of the meat-free options on the menu look appealing. Even then, I try to keep the environment in mind. I don’t keep milk, eggs, butter, or mayonnaise in my fridge, and I recently bought some vegan “cheese,” which is kind of bland, and Ben & Jerry’s Non-Dairy Chocolate Fudge Brownie, which tastes nothing like the original ice cream and requires me to reframe it as its own thing instead of as a substitute. It’s not bad. It’s just not uber-chocolatey. I’ve given up on trying to find an alternative to milk, as every one I’ve tried made me gag, so I just don’t have cereal anymore.

4. I’m an atheist. This, with 12 years of Catholic school behind me. Oops. Once upon a time I was a Unitarian-Universalist, having converted away from Catholicism, but I don’t claim a religion anymore.

5. Oh, as long as we’re getting all of “those” things out of the way, I do HIIT (high-intensity interval training) workouts, but not Cross-Fit, so I’m not too obnoxious, I hope. Hey, I’ve seen the memes.


6. I’m ambiverted, but if push comes to shove I will claim introversion and the Myers-Briggs indicator of INTJ. Some call this type The Architect. Others call it The Mastermind. In terms of characters with the INTJ personality, I tend to identify with Jean-Luc Picard and not Dexter Morgan. Usually. (There’s actually a dearth of female INTJ characters. The most famous one is Clarice Starling. Hannibal Lecter is an INTJ, too.)

Now there's two sides of the same coin. (Image: Orion Pictures)

Now there’s two sides of the same coin. (Image: Orion Pictures)

7. My favorite color is purple. Just saying.

8. I’m straight, but could not possibly care less what anyone else is. Well, unless I’m interested in dating a guy. Then it kind of matters which way he swings.

9. I’m originally from Long Island but consider the D.C. area home, namely the Virginia side of the river. I toy with the idea of moving to the Maryland side, but I’m a Virginian in mindset in many ways. I kid people that I’m the next best thing to a socialist, but there are moderate, or even somewhat conservative, things about the Commonwealth that appeal to me, things that just scream “VIRGINIA,” as in, we don’t do parole. Also, up to 70% of Internet traffic flows through northern Virginia. Be nice to us, especially you there, in Silicon Valley. Also, Shenandoah National Park. You need to see Skyline Drive to believe it. And peanuts. And the Virginia Reel. And Thomas Jefferson. Did I mention Thomas Jefferson? Hamilton can suck a peanut, that authoritarian cur.

10. I have a crush on France and Finland. If you put me in France or a French-speaking area for a few months, a lot of my French would come back to me, and I could get by. If you put me in Finland for a few months I would still only be able to order a beer and insult people, maybe even at the same time. Have you ever taken a good look at Finnish?

A famous Polandball comic, as seen on Reddit.

A famous Polandball comic, as seen on Reddit.