A year after his passing, Robin Williams’ life and death are still having an incredible impact on me. Below is a text I wrote after his death, updated only where necessary, to reflect my life one year later. Continue reading Robin Williams: One Year On
I think most people understand the basic tenets of writing, that a story has a beginning, middle and end. I think that most people understand that stories don’t always START at the beginning, nor do they necessarily FINISH at the end. And that middle part…well it’s a proper layer cake, isn’t it? It is the meat, cheese, veg and condiments of your sanny, and you want to build it to be as filling and palatable as possible. Continue reading Reflections on Completing the First Act of a Novel
If anyone coming to Montreal gives a good god damn about Human Rights, I would urge you this summer to AVOID the Just For Laughs / Juste Pour Rire “Comedy” festival.
They regularly feature a “Les Anglais” gala with Juste Pour Rire…an entire evening of comedy devoted to insulting and mocking Quebec’s English-speaking minorities. Continue reading No Laughing Matter: Boycott Just For Laughs Festival
So you’ve written a fantastic masterpiece, but don’t know what to do because you don’t have the background, pedigree, connections, contacts, or bribe money to get it published?
As the eBook and Print-on-Demand revolution marches forward, you seem to get the sense that YOU, TOO might be able to GET YOUR BOOK OUT THERE?
Don’t fucking bother.
Okay, break (or mourning period for my civil liberties under Stephen Harper) is over. Back to the blahg.
So, what topic to cover for my return to my own damn website?
Well, as this is supposed to be where I blahg about my writing and stuff…let’s talk about my writing! Continue reading THE OMNIVERSE: BACK TO BLOGGING
Bill C-51, which I have spoken about previously was passed into law by the Canadian Senate, without amendment.
The bill, in part, grants espionage and police powers to CSIS, the Canadian KGB. They may now monitor every phone, mobile phone, computer and smart device at will, without warrant, or oversight.
Likewise, they will be able to collect private information on Canadians and share that information with multiple agencies within Canada, as well as with foreign governments.
Police powers have been expanded to include warrantless searches of private property and a longer detention-without-charge period.
Criticism of Zionism and Israel, as well as lending moral or material support to the Boycott, Divest and Sanction (BDS) Movement is now considered an arrestable offence, under the Hate Crimes provision of Canadian Law.
Any statement on any public or private online platform which can be in any way deemed as being sympathetic with terrorism is now an arrestable offence.
Police have more power to infiltrate “suspect” groups, which could be anything from BDS to Greenpeace, to Médcins Sans frontiers.
I do not know what to say right now, other than to say that I am in an absolute and total sense of shock. I grew up in a country that was officially bilingual, multicultural, pluralistic…a country that was a world leader in diplomacy, the environment, Human rights, peacekeeping, science…
Canada is no longer any of those things.
And now, tonight, my freedom to even speak out about it is a crime.
Normally, I’d add a bunch of links to this post, as I’ve done in previous posts…but I don’t have the emotional will, tonight. I’m posting this, because I genuinely feel I have to. I’ll go back and add links later – assuming I don’t just find myself disappearing in the middle of the night.
I feel devastated, because the country I loved is dead. I don’t recognize this place, anymore.
Man is least himself when he talks in his own person. Give him a mask, and he will tell you the truth. – Oscar Wilde
The oft-quoted remark above is used frequently in reference to the power of the anonymity of the Internet. At least, its anonymity before every fucking government on Earth started spying on the Internet on “behalf” of its citizens. Yes, I’m looking at YOU, faceless Spy Agency Bureaucrat!
The well-proven theory goes: If you put some people behind the shield of several thousand miles of cables, a computer screen and a message board, inevitably you will see them turn into abusive assholes, trolls, and all-around jerks. These same people, in a face to face discussion, might get heated and passionate, but they’d never sling the kind of shit to your face that they would online. In fact, these internet trolls wear their computer screens like Wilde’s masks, allowing people to be their true selves: complete assholes. Continue reading Masks
It is 2016, and I am reposting this, almost without effecting any major changes, simply because superhero/comic book movies over the last 20 years have become ubiquitously repetitive, formulaic, and almost consistently, unimaginatively, interchangeable.
I have enjoyed many – but not nearly all, in fact not even MOST – of the superhero movies that we’ve had over the last decade or so, but honestly it’s getting past the point of oversaturation.
I really can’t wait for the trend to end, especially with the slate of really terrible DC films about to be shat out. We all remember far too well how awful Zack Snyder’s Man of Steel was, and I went in with great expectations because other than that movie about the slutty looking teenaged girls in the mental hospital, I’ve loved pretty much every Zack Snyder movie I’ve seen, especially the Watchmen. Continue reading 2016 SUMMER UPDATE: Superhero Movies SUCK
So, I’ve made little to no secret that I’ve been creatively constipated for months, because of personal struggles and, of course, because I’m working on the first draft of two (generally speaking) wholly new stories.
When writing new material, I often find this start-stop-start happens, especially when working with a completely new universe. The first rule of new universes is to be very, very careful while exploring them. Unfortunately, that leads to hesitation, which leads to self-doubt, which leads to second-guessing and obsessive micro-editing of everything I’ve previously written for that particular story, going forward and writing a paragraph or two, realizing I have no idea where to go from there, which leads back to hesitation. So the cycle becomes recursive, leading to full-on writer’s block. Continue reading How I Went Out for a Walk and Came Back With a Chapter
So, a little backstory on this post. When I was writing what I thought was going to be my masterpiece as an author, but turned out to be an extremely poorly-received disaster that I’ve left up only so it may serve as a warning to others, I would, before writing, literally imagine myself sitting down with the character whose perspective the story was being told from, and listen to them tell me what happened. Continue reading Character Backstory and Why You Need It