Sunday, July 21, 2019

Homemade Flight Stands on the Toy Show

I tried my hand at some super duper basic woodworking, and made myself some flight stands. I thought they turned out really great, so I made a video to share with anyone who is interested. Check it out.

Saturday, July 20, 2019

Week Eight Report

Okay, it's the week eight progress update. How's my trip to one-derland going? Well, this week I tried adding some non-carnivore food back in. Did it go well? Watch the video and find out.

Thursday, July 18, 2019

Gonna Need a New Belt Soon

I noticed today, as I was doing up my belt, that I only have one hole left before I run out.


Then I'm going to need a new belt...or I might be able to dig around in my closet and find an old one that fits me now. After all, this isn't the first time I did a post about my belt on this blog. Back in 2012, I lost a bunch of weight, and needed a belt then. But, because I wasn't quite doing it right back then, I gained all that weight back. I'm pretty sure this time around, it's for good. I'm going to One-derland, and I'm going to take up residence there.

Wednesday, July 17, 2019

Cheap Toy Hunting Scout Walkers

New Episode of Cheap Toy Hunting today, in which I talk about some scout walkers from Return of the Jedi that I found at Ross, and what I did when I found them.

Poo-Pourri Provided for People

Some shit is going down at work...and I mean that literally. I went into the stall today, and discovered this waiting for me:


They have supplied us all with some Poo-pourri! And a cutesy little note to go with it to instruct us all on its usage:


If you've never heard of Poo-pourri, here's their commercial from YouTube:



It was one of those semi-viral things several years ago, like the rainbow-ice-cream-pooping unicorn commercial for the Squatty Potty:



A guy I worked with dressed up like that guy for Halloween, complete with a stuffed unicorn. Anyway, I'm off topic. Apparently, somebody is sick and tired of dealing with the smell in the bathroom. I can feel pretty confident that it's not my fault, though. With all the fasting I do, I hardly ever go number two at work.

I wonder, considering their commercial, if there's Poo-pourri provided for the women's restroom too. But women don't have any problems like that, right?

Monday, July 15, 2019

Week Seven Update

It's a little bit late, but I finally managed to get the video thrown together. This time, I talk about the second half of my vacation, and how much, if any, that it affected my progress.

Sunday, July 14, 2019

Vitruvian HACKS On The Toy Show



Ever heard of Vitruvian HACKS? They're an obscure toy line, but they're totally worth checking out. I know, you could watch my video for a nice little introduction to them, and then proceed from there.

Friday, July 12, 2019

Week Six Update

Here's my update as to how the carnivore and intermittent fasting worked for the first half of my vacation.

Tuesday, July 9, 2019

Went On Vacation

And this happened while I was there:


Pretty cool, eh? It was neat to finally meet the famous Rish Outfield in person.

While I was there, we recorded a couple of podcasts, and hung out together for a couple of days too. Had a great time, and it makes me wish that circumstances were different and I could have stayed in town instead of moving to Texas. Ah well, maybe circumstances will change again someday and I'll be able to move back.

At the very least, at least there's a few episodes of the show coming up that you can look forward to.

Thursday, July 4, 2019

Barbecue

If burning a flag is uncool, Walmart has the solution. Barbecue with flag covered charcoal.

Wednesday, June 26, 2019

Week Five Update

Went out of town with my wife for our anniversary this weekend. I was really worried about how things would go if I was eating out at restaurants for every meal. How did it go? Check out the video to see.

Whaaaaaaaaaaaaaa....?

We were at the dollar store the other day, and I saw this product on the shelf:



That's right, grated topping. Not grated Parmesan cheese topping. It's grated topping...with Parmesan. What in blue blazes might be in this to force them to not call it grated Parmesan, I wondered. Because you know that they totally would have if they possibly could have. So, I looked at the ingredients...sorry about the blurry picture. I guess I got too close to the label:


It has dairy whey...which, I guess isn't the worst thing ever. The second ingredient though...Food Starch. FOOD STARCH?!!

What, pray tell, could food starch possibly be? My guess is that it's soylent green. It's made of PEOPLE!

Nah, that's surely not true. Actual soy is sooooo cheap that they would never bother to pay for the people it would take to make real soylent green. And, down at the bottom it says that it contains wheat and soy, despite the fact that nothing on the ingredient list says wheat or soy. I suppose that's what they mean by food starch.

I can't believe some of the stuff people can get away with when it comes to labeling food. Eventually, there will come a day when you can look at the ingredients of products, and it will just say:

Ingredients: Food.

Just eat it, and accept the cancer that it gives you, you filthy commoner.

More Cheap Toy Hunting

Here is the video about how I built my army of Snowtroopers from Empire Strikes Back. Good times were had by all.

Tuesday, June 25, 2019

That's A New One

My wife and I went to a nearby town called New Braunfels for our anniversary this past weekend. We went tubing down the Comal River:


Which is a big attraction there. There was a lot of other people on the river with us as well.


And as happens to us every time, there were several things that we forgot to bring with us when we left home. We swung into the local Walmart to grab stuff that we needed, and while I was looking for what I needed, I saw something that surprised me.

Walmart always makes T-shirts of the local high school that you can buy and, I don't know, wear to their football games or something to show some support. It doesn't really support the school in any real way. Walmart gets all the money from the sale of the shirts, but I guess you are supporting them in thought anyway.

So, they had the shirt for the New Braunfels team, and I saw that that school has a rather unusual mascot:


Not only is the shirt an awful tie dye thing, but their mascot is the friggin' unicorns. I know what you're saying right now, "Big Anklevich, you're a sexist douche. Unicorns are noble and fierce mythical creatures," and both of those things might be true, but mascots have always been something that was supposed to be fearsome, or something that the imagery could strike fear into the hearts of your opponents.

Nobody chooses rabbits or prairie dogs as their mascot, because that isn't the least bit fearsome, and their opponents would only laugh. How much did the ducks have to fight just to live down their mascot in The Mighty Ducks movie. The fact that they called the movie The Mighty Ducks says all that you need to say.

So, if my high school was the unicorns, I probably wouldn't choose to go out for any of the sports. It would force you to face ridicule from every other team you played against. Week after week, it would be ridicule. If you can put Rainbow Dash on your uniforms, and people would have to say, "I guess that works," then you shouldn't have that mascot.

If you must us a mythical creature, try dragons, or even griffons, but don't go with Unicorns...or pixies, or brownies, or pecks, or even stupid daikinis.

The Last of the Cloak and Dagger

Finally made it to part three of my Cloak and Dagger series. This time I'm talking about the toys. Check the video out, folks.

Monday, June 24, 2019

Life...Uh...

The weeds are just unstoppable around here. Here's a good example of what I mean:


There must be a crack that leads down to the soil there somewhere, or the weed couldn't exist, but you can't see it with the naked eye or anything. It's just bricks, mortar, and cement, but, as my friend Ian Malcolm used to say:


I hate weeds, and this year, I especially hate them, because they're worse than ever.

Thursday, June 20, 2019

Week Four Update

Things are still going really well. I've managed to hit every goal I've made so far, which is awesome, and I'm losing bunches of weight too. Here's my update for the fourth week of my plan to take me to one-derland.

Wednesday, June 12, 2019

Week Three Update

It's been a full three weeks that I've been doing the Alternate Day Fasting combined with the Carnivore Diet. How's it going? Watch the video and check it out.

Tuesday, June 11, 2019

Time Flies

This came up on Facebook today. Hard to believe that it's already been two years.

Man-Bat and the Dewback on Cheap Toy Hunting

Hey, y'all. I just put up a new episode of Cheap Toy Hunting over on my YouTube toy channel. I got some great deals on this stuff, and it's fun stuff, so I had to share it with you. Hope you like it.

Friday, June 7, 2019

Weird Car

I was getting gas the other day, when I saw something weird peaking out from behind all the trucks parked in front of the convenience store. I drove past it, and was excited to see what it was. I had to drive around the parking lot and pass it by once more to get a picture of it too, so I could share it.


I thought it was the Google Maps car at first, but it in fact has a sign on it declaring it to be the Apple Maps car. I don't know why I'm geeked out about it, but I thought it was really cool to see the thing in person.

Fighting My Addiction

I was talking with Rish on the phone the other day, and he was telling me about The West Wing. He's been on the show, but he'd never watched it before. Recently, however, he has begun watching the show. He told me about John Spencer's character, Leo McGarry, and a particularly moving episode where they delved into what the life of an alcoholic is like.

The character mostly refuses to ever drink, because he's not like other people. He can't just have one drink. If he gives in, even a little, then he will certainly go overboard. He was kind of shocked by it all, and after he expressed that to me, I told him, "Now you know why I've got to do things like Keto and Intermittent Fasting. I'm the same guy, but with food."

Now, I don't want anyone to think I'm making light of addiction. I understand how powerful and destructive that alcoholism or drug addiction can be. People can be normal people one day, and criminals doing the most awful things the next day because they gave in to their addiction to alcohol or drugs. They're terrible things, and the bane of the modern world.

But I am going to raise my hand and say, "Hi, my name is Big Anklevich, and I'm an addict." What I am is a food addict. Or better yet, a sugar addict. Actually, more precisely, I'm a carb addict. I'm like that guy on West Wing that can't just have a taste. I'm like Barney from The Simpsons, who got off the sauce, turned his life around, became an astronaut, and when he had a tiny glass of champagne in celebration, went off the rails and lost it all.



That's me. For example, at work people often bring in treats--donuts, cookies, pizza, cake--and every time that they did, I was that piece of shit that kept sneaking back covertly to grab more and more of it. I hoped that no one saw that I was frequenting the treat table way more than anyone else. And of course my actions meant that several people didn't get any treats at all. What an ass.

It was 20016 that I found out that my habit had led me to diabetes. Now something had to change. I couldn't just keep going like I always had. In late 2017, I discovered the Ketogenic way of eating, and realized that I could turn my life around.

Over the next six months or so, I gradually got myself onto the diet, until I was firing on all cylinders. I was sticking to it perfectly, I was losing lots of weight, and things were going swimmingly. All my blood tests told me that I was super healthy. I hadn't felt so good or so good about myself in years.

Then the combination of two events completely derailed all that progress. One, I went to the doctor, got an A1C test done, and it said that I was at 5.2. A diabetic is someone who score 6.5 or higher on the A1C. A prediabetic is someone who scores between 5.7 and 6.4 on the A1C. So, my efforts had moved me out the even the range of prediabetes. So, in my mind I started thinking, "Wow! I'm not a diabetic anymore."

In one sense, that was true, but in another sense, it was completely false. It took me a long time to turn my body from a healthy one into a diabetic one. It would surely take a similarly long time to repair that damage and get back to normal. But I wasn't thinking like that. Instead, I was thinking, "Wahoo, I'm cured!"

The second thing that happened at that time is that we went out to California for our summer vacation. I'd been so good with what I ate over the last while that I thought I could lay off the Ketogenic thing while I was there. Let myself have a vacation and eat whatever I pleased. We were in San Francisco, I should have myself some sourdough and some Ghirardelli.

Those two factors combined sent me off the rails again. When I got back from vacation, I couldn't get back onto keto and stay on. I kept telling myself that I wasn't diabetic anymore anyway, so it shouldn't hurt if I have an indulgence or two sometimes. Of course, that's not where it stopped. An indulgence or two would have been fine, but they multiplied to three or four or ten or seventy-eight.

All that weight that I lost from being good on keto began to creep back on...wait, creep isn't the right word. It came rushing back. It didn't take long for me to return to my old corpulent self. All my problems began returning. Worse yet, because of keto, I had been able to ween myself off of all the medications I was taking before. But now I was eating as if I was a normal Joe, and I didn't have the protections that those medications offered (along with their numerous side-effects). So, these indulgences hit me even harder than they would have before.

Here and there, I would get control of myself for a little while, but inevitably I would lose it again. I noticed a black speck appear in my vision, and realized that I had damaged my eyes with my recklessness. This was particularly sobering. What else was it doing to me that I wasn't able to see evidence of? How soon was my fatal heart attack coming?

I'd been thinking about trying to get back to it, and using YouTube as a means of ensuring that I keep at it. I'd long thought of doing a YouTube channel documenting my success at Keto. But I hadn't decided to do it until I'd already lost 40lbs. At that point, isn't it a little late to start documenting things? Now, I guess, I could make the lemons into lemonade, because all my progress had been reversed. So I could document it all from the very beginning.

So, here's my first video of my new YouTube channel called Big Anklevich on Health. A documentation of me finally getting my health under control, and turning my trajectory toward an early grave in a different direction.



I did that one a few weeks ago. Last week, I did my first update. Here it is:



As you might have guessed, I was pretty pleased with my results of week one. There's no way my weight loss could keep that pace, but when I did my second update, it was still going pretty well:



So, that's where I'm at so far. I'm being pretty drastic, I suppose, but I feel it's necessary to get myself completely under control. I'm going to visit family on vacation about a month from now, and I need to be ready to turn down all those temptations, and keep myself heading in the right direction. You don't get to One-derland if you give in to all the offers you receive after all.

It's only been two weeks, but I'm feeling good, and it seems to be getting easier every day. Sometime soon, I'll go see the doctor, and I'll be able to share with you what my A1C is and what my other blood tests reveal.

Thursday, June 6, 2019

Did April Powers Bring May Flowers?

I meant to do one of these writing updates once a week, but I'm...three weeks overdue. Whoops!

So, what's going on right now? Well, I am suffering from a little bit of writer's block these days.


I think, after all this time, I finally understand what writer's block is. I used to think it was when you sat down at the keyboard, went to type and some kind of door in your brain slammed shut and you couldn't write anything. It's not really like that, though. It's different. I'll describe what I'm up to and see if it makes sense.

So, for the last month or so, I have been doing prep work for my book idea called The Gauntlet. It's about a pair of young adults, Ramona and Sebastian, who get visited by a weird looking guy and told they have inherited a gauntlet from a long lost relative of theirs. These two are surprised, because they have been orphans for most of their lives, and didn't know they had any relatives anywhere. Turns out the gauntlet they inherited gives them superpowers, and they have now been drafted into the fight against the ancient sorcerer, Gydion, who lives in the Otherworld, and only the power of the magic in the gauntlet keeps him from invading our world.

I've been writing a treatment for this book. It's grown pretty long. The treatment is sitting and 10,393 words right now. It's novelette length already. I've pretty much arrived at the climax, and I'm trying to figure out how to make it work. Their enemy has defeated them so completely, but they have to go back and take him on again. How will it change this time? The odds seem stacked against them way more than the last time they faced. What can they do to make it work?

That's my problem. I don't know! I'm not sure how to make it believable that they triumph in the end. I'm trying to come up with ideas, but they don't really come. And so, I'm blocked. I sit down to the keyboard, and type a couple of words, and then just quit. And that's on the days that I do write, because I have been avoiding writing as well due to my situation. I don't feel like struggling to come up with an idea. I have writer's block, and I finally understand just exactly what that means.

I finished off last month on a pretty weak note. Here's my chart:


I haven't gotten over five hundred words for most of the month, and the last week I was getting piddly numbers under 200. I even did a mere 84 on the very last day of the month. May was much worse than April. Check out the comparison from the last chart:


15,000 words compared to less than 9,000 in May. Hell, May even has an extra day. But don't worry, it gets worse. This is my chart so far this month:


Through the first five days, I haven't even managed to get 200 words. More days not writing than writing. I almost didn't even make it over 100 on the two days that I did write. It's just pitiful.

So, how do I get through this? Do I spend some time working on a different story for a while and then come back to this one? Maybe I need to force myself to drive to work in silence--no podcasts, no audiobooks, no music--and let my mind turn over the problem. Better yet, I should hook up a mic, and make myself talk about it out loud, because it's too easy for my mind to wander to other subjects if I don't feel like anyone's listening, but if I'm recording, it tricks my mind into thinking someone's listening, even though no one ever will. Or maybe I should call Rish Outfield and talk with him about it on my drive to work. He helped me with a spot I was having trouble with earlier in the story.

I feel like I really ought to be writing on this book for real by now. Not still piddling around trying to make a treatment for the thing.

I guess I'm getting hit pretty bad with that impostor syndrome. I feel like I can't turn this idea into a good book. Maybe somebody else could, but I'm not a real writer. Just a jackass podcaster who likes to talk about writing on the Dunesteef from time to time like I know what I'm saying. I'm like a boy wearing his dad's clothes, and pretending to be a an adult. It's so cute when little kids go clomping around in oversized shoes, but nobody's gonna pay that kid to fix his air conditioner, no matter what coveralls and boots he might be wearing.

Do I have what it takes to write a book? Can I create interesting characters that aren't just thinly veiled versions of myself? This guy is Big Anklevich but a mathlete. This one is Big Anklevich in a dress. That's what it feels like I do.

I want to be super positive and say, "I'm going to tackle this head on and defeat it! I'm going to turn things around!" But I don't really have much confidence in that. I hope I can turn it around and keep going. We'll see how it goes.

Sunday, May 26, 2019

Natural?

We were at the grocery store today, and, on the canned vegetable aisle, we ran into this product:


It's corn on the cob, but you don't have to refrigerate it or anything. It was just sitting on the shelf in some kind of vacuum sealed bag. If this corn can survive in those conditions, then I can't imagine that "So Natural" could possibly be a proper name for the stuff. Some witchcraft must be at play here.

Edit: You know, it just occurred to me that it was possibly in the wrong place. Maybe somebody picked it up at the produce section from a refrigerated area, then decided they wanted canned corn instead, and dropped it there like a douche that doesn't care if he ruins things. If that's the case, then I take back my witchcraft accusation. No trial need take place. Let's call off the burning at the stake. Though, you should probably skip it either way. Corn's not particularly good for you in the first place--a lot of carbs that would be better off not eaten--but if they're some kind of witchcraft involved to make it never deteriorate like it should, then I'm sure it's doubly bad for you.

Saturday, May 18, 2019

In A Hurry

I saw this at the local Walmart the other day, and it made me chuckle.


I guess the person labeling the clearance items was in a bit of a hurry.

The Mayflower?

I think I'm past due for another writing update. You might think that I'd given up on it, considering that it's been two weeks since the last update, but I haven't. I'm still going. I could probably kick it up a notch...



But I haven't quit, and when we're talking about me, that's saying something.

I'm going to skip the day by day round-up, mostly because it's been long enough that I don't really remember what was going on from day to day anymore. I do have my chart, and I'll post that here.


You'll notice a couple of red days with big zeros in that word count column. Those are going to happen.

The first one was last Saturday, when my son had his first swim meet. My wife has been looking for some kind of sport for him to participate. He's done soccer, and hated it. He's done basketball, and hated it. This year, she heard that all of his school friends are on the local swim team, so she signed him up for that. I was all for it, until I found out what kind of time commitment swim team insists upon. Parents have to volunteer a bunch of times over the course of the season. So, last Saturday, I was up at 6:00 AM to get to the pool by 6:45 and get my son registered for his events, and then help run the snack bar all morning. The swim meet took all day too. We got home at 2:00 PM. I was so worn out that I spent the rest of the day in a kind of a stupor, and went to bed at the end of the night without having writing once cross my mind.

It wasn't until the next morning that I even realized that I hadn't written. Not to worry, I just picked up as though nothing had happened. I think that is the real key. Writing every day is the goal, but it's not a streak or anything. It's not like I have to have thousands of unbroken days, never messing up once. If you think like that, then the first time you mess up is the last time you'll bother doing it. And you're bound to mess up sooner or later. It's guaranteed. So, if you think that way, it's a guaranteed failure.

I went back to writing the next day, and didn't miss another day until yesterday. I decided, for some reason, to see if I could get caught up on my personal blog. I send it out to family so that they can know what's going on with us. My family is pretty big, and as time goes on, we get further and further dispersed around the continent. That goes doubly for me, now that we live several states away from our closest relatives. I'm pretty notorious for letting the posts pile up for weeks, then writing them all at once, which totally defeats the purpose of trying to help our distant family members keep up with the goings on of our local family. But I had allowed that to happen again.

So, yesterday, instead of writing on my treatment for The Gauntlet, I wrote a bunch of backlogged family blog posts. I figured I'd write on the gauntlet when I got home at night. However, I totally forgot to do anything of the sort when I got home at night. Instead, I went to bed, and wrote nary a word.

It's okay though, because today, I wrote again. It is not the end. The streak doesn't have to remain perfectly unbroken. It just has to continue despite any setbacks.

I have to admit that I do find it challenging. I feel like I should pump it up a bit. Writing should be my number one priority. Back in 2017, I made it to the point that I was writing at least 1,000 words a day, and I wrote about 30,000 words a month for two months in a row. I finished writing an entire novel in that time, and wrote deep into its sequel as well.

If I want to be a writer, that should be something I should be aspiring for. But there are other things going on as well. Of course, I have a full-time job, and that always has to be a top priority, or I will end up getting fired from it. I have a family, and they have to be THE top priority. I have a podcast, and I need to keep that as a relatively high priority. I have a YouTube channel that I've been running for the last few months, and I want to keep that as a high priority too. I have my health problems that I've been dealing with since I was diagnosed with diabetes three years ago (jeez has it been three years?) and I need to keep those as a high priority too. I've been considering a YouTube channel in which I document my struggles to get my health back as well. How do I keep all these balls in the air, all these plates spinning, without letting one of them fall to the ground and shatter? That's what I need to figure out.

But the writing is the top priority of all those secondary things, you know after the job and the family. The podcast, the YouTube Channels and so forth are supposed to work synergistically with the writing goal. The other things help bring attention to my writing, help bring fans that might want to read my writing. So, if I don't keep the writing going at full steam, then the rest is for naught.

I did get really excited the other day when I was talking with Rish on the phone on my drive to work. It takes me 45 minutes more or less to get to work each day. Another 45 minutes to get home. That's an hour and a half of my day. I was lamenting not being able to make good use of that time for writing. I've tried recording myself as I try to plan out stories, which is how I worked out a lot of the details of The Gauntlet, but going back and listening to those recordings and trying to transcribe them is very tedious. I've tried using my iPhone's text-to-speech function to have it transcribe what I say, but it has a very short time span that it will do that. I want to say a minute is as long as it will go before timing out. I would have to continually look at my phone while driving to restart the transcription, and that just isn't safe.

I decided to put the question out to the writers that are my Facebook friends, and got several responses. It looks like Dragon Anywhere is probably my best bet. It transcribes, has no time limit, and steadily improves its ability to understand you the more you use it. The downside, is that it has a subscription fee of $15 a month, but if it works as described, it will probably be totally worth it to me. The app has a free trial period, so I'm going to try it out and see how it goes. As well as check out a couple of other options that were suggested to me. I'll report back to y'all when I'm done. I'm pretty excited about the prospect.

Anyway, that's my writing update for the past few weeks. I'll be back again eventually to let you know how it's going, and I promise that I will keep it up.

Sunday, May 5, 2019

The End of April Powers


I was doing a post more or less every day about my writing adventure, but I got a little behind, and I let it pile up. Now it's been more than a week, and I have a lot to catch up on. First of all, April came to an end several days ago. How did I do? Let's see.

Previously on April Powere: I was having trouble figuring out what to write when I last posted. That was all the way back on April 23rd. I'd finished my Christmas story, and it was time to move on to something else. I flailed about for a project to jump into. I wasn't ready to go back to Sunny & Gray book 2 just yet. I hadn't re-familiarized myself with it. It's been two years since I wrote a word on it after all. So, I decided to write on the prologue for The Gauntlet, because I knew I had a good plan for that, and I could write it as is. I did that, but the 23rd was the day that I finished it.

Usually, I don't count outlining or pre-production as writing. To me it doesn't feel like it should count, because it's not words that count toward a final product. But I decided that I probably need to change that. So, on Wednesday the 24th, I started trying to get some planning done for The Gauntlet. After all, I came up with the idea years ago. If I'd written back when I first came up with it, it'd probably be getting its own movie by now starring...well, starring Lori Loughlin and Felicity Huffman, so I guess it would be in the same place as it is now after all.

I struggled with the outlining, however. I couldn't get really into it, so I scribbled down some half-hearted words.

Words Wednesday: 331
Words Total: 13780


I continued to struggle for several days. I decided that I would just tell as much of the story that I knew, including background, world-building, odds and ends, anything like that. Thursday was actually pretty good. I got 566.

Words Thursday: 566
Words Total: 14346


But that was my best day. My heart just wasn't in it. I would open up the file each day, and then peck out a couple of words and quit early. If I even did that. A lot of times, I didn't even write on my lunch break like I had been doing all month, and then I had to squeeze it in when I got home late at night. That's what I did on Friday. I got 230.

Words Friday: 230
Words Total: 14576


Saturday was even worse, but it almost always is. The weekend seems to be the hardest for me to work. Maybe that's why people don't traditionally work on the weekend. It just sucks. I only got 156 words on Saturday. That's not even a paragraph, I don't think.

Words Saturday: 156
Words Total: 14732


Sunday, I tried a little harder to get some actual stuff down. I told some of the background stuff that may or may not ever matter in the actual book itself, but I can totally feel all J.K. Rowling-like by saying stuff that I know about the characters that never made it in the book, and I'll convince people that I'm smart because of it. I'm not at all, but It would be neat if somebody thought I was smart.

Words Sunday: 792
Words Total: 15524


The cool thing was that I made it over the 15,000 mark for words in the month. That's a kind of a milestone. And now there was only two days left in the month. I'd written every day for four straight weeks. Things weren't exactly rolling, but I was tenaciously holding on at least.

Then came Monday. I didn't even think about writing my words at lunch. How had I blown my habit so bad already? I was going to have to do them that night at home. I had a prior engagement, however. Avengers: Endgame had come out over the weekend, and we were podcasting about it on Monday night. I realized, as I was setting up my microphone that I still hadn't written. I considered taking a moment and writing a sentence or something, but I didn't have time for it. Renee Chambliss called right at that moment, and we started with the recording. I was going to have to wait until we were done. However, by the time we were done, I'd completely forgotten. My mind was all wrapped up in Avengers and not in The Gauntlet.

I went to bed, and didn't even realize that I'd missed writing until halfway through the next day.

Words Monday: 0
Words Total: 15524


I blew it. There was only two days left in the month, and I blew it. Way to go. I didn't get too down, though. Sure, I missed a day, but it was never about a streak of unbroken days. It was about getting actual writing done, and making a habit. So, I told myself that I needed to get back to it, and that I needed to make sure not to miss at my lunch break anymore. I finished out the month with 218.

Words Tuesday: 218
Words Total: 15742


Not a great total or anything, but I was still going, and that was important. The month was over, and I even think I managed to get more words for the month than Rish did, amazingly enough, considering how lamb-like I finished out the month. Here's my final chart:


I admittedly was still feeling a little uninspired. What I was writing had evolved into a sort of story treatment, as they call it in the film industry. I was going scene by scene, trying to plan out this book. I was struggling with issues in the story, however. I wanted certain characters to do certain things, but there wasn't a good reason for them to happen that way. I kept thinking about those Screen Rant Pitch Session YouTube videos where the producer would ask the writer questions about his inconsistent story, and the writers only response was, "Because I need it to be that way for the story." I didn't want my story to be that way.

I'm pretty sure that it was either Tuesday or Wednesday, when I decided to call Rish on my way to work, and ask his advice on how to get through the issues that were plaguing me with the story. This was a very beneficial conversation for me. Not only did he have some good suggestions for my plotting problem, but he also expressed amazement about just how much of the story I did have worked out in my head.

"I can't believe you know so much about this story...and yet it's not completely written already," he said.

I guess that's a backhanded compliment, but it worked all the same. I realized that I do really know the story well, and should be able to breeze through the problems that I was having pretty quickly. It got me excited about the story for the first time since I started working on it out of desperation for something to move on to back when I finished the Christmas story. Each day, as my lunch break arrived, the story would flow as effortlessly as Easy Cheese from the spigot:




So, on Wednesday, I got 591.

Words Wednesday: 591
Words For May: 591
Words Total: 16333


A new month, and a new invigorated outlook. On Thursday, I got 406. If I'd had the chance, I probably would have kept going, but I couldn't...alas.

Words Thursday: 406
Words For May: 997
Words Total: 16739


Friday, I did good too. I made it to 599. A record high for the month. How long could that record stand?

Words Friday: 599
Words For May: 1596
Words Total: 17338


Saturday, I really got into it. I wrote for extra time, late into the night. I finished the day with 1097 words. I guess the record didn't stand for long. Maybe this one will last a little while more.

Words Saturday: 1097
Words For May: 2693
Words Total: 18435


The treatment is really flowing like that aforementioned Easy Cheese, and I'm excited about it. I'm tempted to set it aside and start writing on the story proper, but I don't think I will. I think I'd like to know the whole plan from beginning to end before I go past that prologue, so that I can drop in hints, allusions, evil foreshadowings, and Easter eggs all along, rather than having to go back and try to stuff them into prose that was written to flow in a certain way. That tends to work like dropping a huge boulder into a stream. The flow always diverts around, and goes in a new direction that I never wanted and that I hate.

So, there's the report. Two weeks worth almost. Too long, really. I don't mind not posting about it every day, because, after all, I'd rather be writing story words than blog words. But I shouldn't wait so much between posts, because it gets a little cumbersome when I do that. So, in other words, I'll see you again soon. Here's my new chart for May so far:


Now I better go and get my words written for Sunday, before I blow it again.

New Toy Show Episode - Cheap Toy Hunting 3

Just put out a new episode. Check it out if you're interested. I detail some more of the good deals I've come across for toys, including a great one on an Obi-Wan Kenobi figure. I also talk very briefly about a story idea that I had that made me want to make a custom toy. Hope you enjoy it.

Monday, April 29, 2019

Shazam! On That Gets My Goat

Rish and I got together the other day after having watched the new DC movie Shazam! and talked about it's pluses and minuses. If you haven't yet, head over and check it out.


Hopefully, you'll enjoy yourself.

Saturday, April 27, 2019

New Toy Show Episode - Cloak and Dagger Part 1

Just finally finished part one of my Cloak and Dagger three-parter. Check it out.



And get ready for part two coming soon about season one of the Freeform TV show.

Wednesday, April 24, 2019

Powering Along


Monday was kind of easy, because I was about halfway through a scene that was going to run approximately 1,000 words. I wrote the other half of it...well, most of the other half of it. I was a smidge shy of being done, which was probably wise, because I was going to need that smidge later.

I finished Monday with:

Words Monday: 554
Words Total: 13251


Then on Tuesday, I didn't do anything to prep for going beyond that prologue. Back when I first came up with The Gauntlet story idea, I spent several of my commutes talking into a microphone about ideas for the story. I'm pretty sure I talked about what the main characters were going to be like, what the world would be like, and so on. I found those audio files, and loaded them onto my phone to listen to them during my drive to work now, so that I could be ready to keep writing. But for some reason, I felt confident in my ability to remember things well enough to continue the story, and never did listen to those files.

Tuesday, when I sat down to write, I quickly finished up the prologue, and then sat there, unable to continue. I needed a scene or two to introduce my main characters of Sebastian and Ramona Jones. I was frozen though. I remembered having a scene in mind where I demonstrated how amazingly studly Sebastian was, but it didn't seem right. I tried to remember what I had planned back in the day, and it wouldn't come to me.

Eventually, I ran out of time, and all I wound up writing was the last small chunk of that prologue. It's writing, but it's not enough to achieve the goal that I'd set for myself a week or so ago where I said 500 words per day, no less. Well, I didn't make that. I only got:

Words Tuesday: 198
Words Total: 13449


That kind of makes me feel bad. I think today, I'm going to see if I can do some serious outlining work. I'm going to listen to those files, and really see if I can get the story and characters ironed out so that I can plow forward like I did back when in 2017 when I wrote book one of Sunny & Gray. Maybe I'll even count the words that I write on the outline as words written. It goes against everything that I've ever believed, but I'm man enough to say that I might believe in something incorrect.

Here's my chart. I managed to get it pulled together today:

Monday, April 22, 2019

Starting Over In April


Yesterday was Easter, and we did Easter Basket Hunts and all of that stuff, but it was actually more chill by far than Saturday was.


It was utterly beautiful weather here in Houston, warm and breezy, and I sat in the shade on my hammock for hours...but I wasn't at peace that whole time. I had this worry in the back of my head bugging me. I had to write today, and I didn't know what I was going to write.

I've found that once I get into something, I can write on it and write on it without too much trouble, but what do I do once I'm done? Before starting a project, I usually spend a lot of my free time thinking about it, working out details of characters and plot. But I didn't prepare myself to be done with my story that I finished on Saturday. I hadn't started planning, or working out details on anything.

I have Sunny & Gray Book 2 sitting in my Google Drive, laying fallow for almost two years, and I thought I could go back to that...but it's been such a long time since I last wrote on that, that I don't remember all the details. I wouldn't want to jump in, and write a bunch of crap that contradicts everything that I've said so far. I need to read it again first, before I dive in.

What could I write TODAY? Because I have pledged to write every day. I have to write something TODAY. I guess I could do planning for something, and call that writing, but I never have in the past. To me, it has to be words toward a final word count of a story or a novel. Otherwise it's not writing. Am I wrong to think that? Do I need to change my thinking?

I suppose I probably do, but it's pretty ingrained and I'm not sure how to change my mind.

So, all day long, I cast about, trying to come up with something that I could work on this very day. It's weird, because in the drawer in my mind, I have a ton of ideas that are waiting to be written. See my story "The Battle of the Ideas" that we ran on the Dunesteef. That's based on my reality. But for some reason, none of those ideas were clamoring to be let out of the drawer. Again, it usually takes me at least a few days of thinking about some idea to plan enough and get excited enough to start working on it.

All the way to 11:00 PM, I wondered what I would write. I remembered that I'd had a silly, little simple idea for a super quickie of a story a month or two ago. It was good enough that I could remember it a week or two later, but now that I needed it, it was gone. I couldn't remember it at all. Maybe it'll return someday.

I sat down to the computer and pondered my options, and went through some old files. I came across my notes for my book series idea called The Gauntlet, and I realized that I had done enough planning for the prologue of that first book that I could totally write it. So, I did. I put 5 words down, and got most the way through the prologue before calling it a night. Interestingly, I've done enough thinking about The Gauntlet over the years that I could certainly keep going after I finish the prologue. I don't have to quit there. I think I know it well enough that I could proceed from there. Maybe it's finally time for The Gauntlet to be written.

I don't have enough time to get a picture of my chart, but I'll put the word count down here for you:

Words Sunday: 573
Words Total: 12697

Sunday, April 21, 2019

How Could We Have Missed It

My daughter wanted to go to a bookstore that she'd heard of from her friends at school. It is called Half Price Books. It's pretty close to our house, and I've driven past it probably dozens of times but never noticed it before.


I don't know how I could have missed it, because it is actually a very large store, especially considering that it is a used book store. It's as big as a Barnes & Nobles inside. It's pretty impressive. I've never shopped in such a large store dedicated exclusively to used books...well, not completely exclusively. They have a used music sections, and a spot where they sell Funko Pop figures (of course). But I was stoked to find it. Not only is it big, but it is also very well organized. You don't have to sift through every single book in the store to see if there's something you want. The whole place is completely alphabetized like a real bookstore would be.

I managed to find something that I'd been hoping to add to my collection for a while.


My daughter found several books she wanted to. It was great. We'll have to stop in every few months and see what else they've got. You know you've finally moved in all the way when you find a used bookstore that you love. I guess I'm now officially a Texan.

That Was A Close One


The night before Easter meant that I had certain responsibilities to attend to. Taking care of those almost caused me to completely forget to write.

At ten thirty, Rish sent me this text:


Each night this past week, I've been texting him my word total when I finish writing, but I hadn't yet this evening. His text had a period at the end, not a question mark. I'm not sure if he was reporting issues that he was having to me, or questioning me as to my progress, but accidentally used a period instead of a question mark. He's pretty precise with language, however, even in texts. He is a writer after all. He doesn't do bullshit like using a letter U to signify the word You. So, I assumed it was his report rather than a question.

It didn't really matter. Either way, he had reminded me that the day was slipping away, and I hadn't written yet...like a chump, I was about to blow it. I texted him back:


I finished up my preparations for the next day, and sat down at the computer. At first, I wasn't really feeling it. I was planning on just getting my 500 words and giving up the minute I passed them. It didn't work that way though. I think that's the brilliance of the 500 word goal. It forces you to write enough that you get into the story, and often you put in way more words than you expected to. By the time I was done, I had 1262 words--1264 if you count The End.


That's right, I am done with "The Christmas Creature." And, as of now, I am really happy with how it turned out. I'm sure that later I'll go back and read through it and realize that it is actually complete shit. But for now, I'm going to bask in the joy of finishing something that I feel I can be proud of.

The story finished up at 14011 words. Quite a story in the end. Just a thousand shy of landing in the novella category. It'll have to satisfy itself with being a novelette instead. Considering that I was expecting to write something that would clock in under 5000 words...well, I don't know. Is it good that it was long? Is it bad? Personally, I don't care. As long as it is good. That's what matters to me. In this day and age of everything being digital, it will probably never matter how long the story is. Nobody is going to insist that I shorten it to save them money on printing costs. Hell, I may expand it a little bit still, to try and emphasize the Christmas setting a little more.

Anyhow, here's my chart for the month so far:


Not sure if I like being done with the story though. Now I gotta figure out what I'm going to write tomorrow.

Saturday, April 20, 2019

April Powering On Along


I let it go several days without giving an update, but I didn't go several days without doing the writing, so that's good, right? Tuesday was a while ago, and I've forgotten how it went. I did make it to 500. I think it was like every day since I made that goal of 500. I write, then I think I'm ready to quit. I hope I've got enough words, so I check, and I'm usually about a hundred short or more, but sometimes it's less. That probably happened on Tuesday, but I don't remember for sure. That's why I'm not supposed to wait so long for the update.

Words Tuesday: 545
Words Total: 8322


Wednesday was definitely that way. I wanted to be done but was at 350, so I had to get back at it. The next thing I knew, I was at 676. Also, I was on the edge of my story's climax. It was time to burn this motherf***er down.

Words Wednesday: 676
Words Total: 8998
(So close to 9000. That is why you fail).

When I got into that climax on Thursday, I just couldn't stop. I probably should have. I should have been paying attention to what was going on, but I didn't. I just went all out for it, and I wrote the last words, finishing off that big finale to finish off my day's writing. All I had left was the denouement now. Oh, and I got a pretty big number too.

Words Thursday: 1351
Words Total: 10349
(Yeah, baby! Over 10000 for the month. Who cares about 9000 now?)

Today was denouement time. I needed to wrap it all up and finish the story off with those two special words...The End. Except that I really wasn't feeling it. I wrote for a bit, and then checked the word count. Damn, only 350. Always 350. I wrote for a bit more, and checked the word count. Aw, come on! 498? So, I wrote one more sentence, and finished out the day at 513.

Words Friday: 513
Words Total: 10862


I'm still not done with the story, but I'm only a paragraph or so away. I'm actually a little worried about where I will go once I've finished it. I can hop back into Sunny & Gray book 2, but it's been such a long time that I wrote on that that I can't remember a lot of what I've already done. I don't want to write a bunch of stuff that contradicts what happened before. Crap. I better do some refresher reading so that I'll be able to pick it back up.

But anyway, I'm still going. Now at eighteen straight days, and feeling good about myself.

Tuesday, April 16, 2019

April's Humpday


Yesterday was the 15th in a month with 30 days. Does that make it humpday, or do I have to wait until today. Math isn't my strong point, but my guess is that when midnight passed me by last night while Rish and I were recording our podcast about Shazam! that was when I got over the hump. If so, then I am on the downside now, and it's all smooth sailing from here on out, right?

Of course not. It's never smooth sailing with writing, especially with me. But I'm doing good so far. I've written every day since I started. Unfortunately, I started on the 2nd, so I haven't written every day this month, but I've written fourteen straight days. That's two whole weeks. Weeeee!

Yesterday, I followed through with my new stipulation of writing at least 500 words. I would have stopped at 350 if I hadn't made that stipulation, but when I checked my word count, I realized that I couldn't be done for the day. So, I kept at it, and finished off with 681. My story, "The Christmas Creature" is about to tick over the milestone of 10,000 words. It wasn't supposed to be so lengthy, but I don't think it would work better if it were shorter, so I think I'm doing it right. You may disagree when you read/hear it though. I guess we'll see.

I may be over the hump, but I gotta keep it going, so I'll stick to it tonight.

Words Monday: 681
Words Total: 7777
(Whoah! that total word count is kind of crazy)

And here's my chart so far:

Monday, April 15, 2019

Who Is This April Powers Woman You Keep Talking About


After all this, I'm thinking I may have to name a character April Powers. Probably need to keep her out of any superhero type story, though. That might be a little too on the nose as they say.

Weekends are tough for me to get the writing in. My wife is home, as are the kids, and either my wife will have chores that she wants me to do or my seven-year-old will want me to play with him all day. Saturday, the chore was working in the backyard. My wife decided, back when we moved into this house, that she was going to put a pond and a waterfall in. She'd always wanted one, and this yard had a great spot for it. It's been in various states of creation ever since. Each time we think it's done, we discover that there's another problem with it.

Our issue these days, is that we can't manage to get the waterfall to stop leaking. The water keeps escaping out crack in the sides somewhere, and seeping down into the dirt. If we run the waterfall for more than a minute or two, the water level of the pond quickly lowers. We've got some fish in there, so we can't just let all the water flow out into the dirt.

We worked on the thing for a long time Saturday, but the problem is still not fixed. Another Saturday at least will be required to get that thing in order.

Writing waited until late in the evening, after everyone was asleep. I did manage to get 452 words in on "The Christmas Creature" though. Not an amazing total, but respectable.

Words Saturday: 452
Words Total: 6584


Sunday was a similar situation. My wife had invited her friend over to dinner at our house. That always means that we have to do a thorough clean up of the house. She's not going to let people come over and see the state that our house is usually in. So, we all cleaned all morning and afternoon. I also had to go out and get the lawn mowed and trimmed.

Then her friend arrived, and the cleaning stopped, but now the entertaining commenced. It was, again, late in the evening when I finally got around to writing. I wrote until I was super tired, and wanted to go to bed. When I checked the word count, I was at 488. I couldn't just leave it at that, though. I was so close to 500.

Back in the day, being February of 2017, I began my most fruitful writing streak of my life by pledging to do 500 words a day that month. This time around, I hadn't pledged to any particular word count, but 500 always glows in the back of my brain as the minimum that I should be achieving. Sometimes, I don't care, and I quit at 452. But I tend to feel a little shame if I do. This time, I was so close. 488? That leaves only twelve words to make it to 500. So, I forced myself to go back and write another sentence or two. A few minutes later, I checked the word count and it had flipped over to 512. Now, I was twelve over instead of twelve under.

Words Sunday: 512
Words Total: 7096


There's the weekend. A respectable performance, and after my Sunday experience, I think I'm going to set a word count goal of 500 per day. Most days, it wouldn't take much effort to get there beyond what I have already put in. Without even making it a goal, I've managed to surpass that total more than half the days of the month. So, I'm going to go for it. We'll see how it goes.

I remember back in 2017, I used to post a chart each day that showed my progress, so I looked up that particular spreadsheet, made a new one for April 2019, and here you go, the month so far:

Saturday, April 13, 2019

Metal Militia

Despite the title, I'm not going to mention Metallica at all. Just stuff that makes me think of them. I think it's probably some kind of Gen X thing, but I love classic rock and metal, pretty much all of it, but I love a specific style of it most of all. I think it's best demonstrated by Steve Vai's 1990 album Passion and Warfare. Here's a great example, the first song off the album called "Liberty":



Anytime I hear stuff that sounds like it, I can't help but like it. I'm sure there are tons and tons of people out there that find it cheesy and awful. I think one guy I used to work with said that when Steve Vai plays his guitar cheese comes out of it instead of sound. That's a fun visual. Imagine some kind of Cheese Wiz flowing out of the speakers and splatting into your ears as you listen to it...an all new and exciting form of synesthesia.

Anyway, I saw a video the other day (I tried to go back and find it so that I could embed it here for you, but I couldn't. Sorry. If I come across it again, I'll come post it, but that won't help you, because you will have already moved on with your life) that said that studies have proven that the music you listen to around the time that you are fifteen or sixteen is the music that you will like the best throughout your life. You'll listen to and enjoy other stuff, but you'll always love that stuff that you were listening to at that age. It must be some kind of magical time. Ask anybody what their big guilty pleasure tune is, and it'll probably be some New Kids On The Block (or similarly cheesy band) song from the time they were about fifteen or sixteen.

Anyway, guess what age I was in 1990 when Passion and Warfare came out, and I listened to it about three times a day for three months or more? That's right, I turned sixteen a month after the album came out.

What does this rambling prologue have to do with anything? Why am I telling you all this? Well, the other day, I was thinking it would be cool to hear a rock version of Star Wars soundtrack music, so I did a search for it. The first thing that came up was this video, which almost made me cry it hit the spot so perfectly:



And to me, it sounds so much like the sound of Steve Vai's Passion and Warfare that I'm basically hardwired to like it. I have no free will in the matter. If there were some sort of subliminal message hidden in it, it couldn't control me any more than it already did.

So, I spent the entire day listening the guy do music from tons of different soundtracks, and this is where I overwhelm you with embedded video of his songs. First there's the Star Wars stuff, a bunch of lovely John Williams tunes getting that metal treatment that they always deserved.

Revenge of the Sith's "The Battle of the Heroes"


A medley of imperial songs:


"Rey's Theme" from The Force Awakens


And my other fave from The Force Awakens, "The March of the Resistance"


But it didn't stop with Star Wars, he's done dozens of songs from Marvel movies too:





He has tons more of these, those were just two of my favorites.

He also does other random things like the Game of Thrones song:



And the opening song from the X-Men cartoons from the 1990s:



And much more. All of it kicks ass, and I guess what I'm saying here is that you should check this guy out. I bet there's other guys out there who do similar things. I think I might have to see what else I can find. I may not be able to get my writing done today after all...

Catching Up With April Powers


It's been a few days since I gave an update. I need to start doing them each night before going to bed or something. Anyway...

Reporting on the rest of the week. Wednesday was a little more busy than usual, so my lunch break was a little shorter. I only managed to get 275 words that day. So, the total was:

Words Wednesday: 275
Words Total: 4988


Thursday, was a little better. I sat down, expecting to take the story in one direction, but I thought I needed to have Macee talk on the phone to her mom, it would be weird if she didn't do it soon. Then, that conversation ended up being an interesting plot point that I hadn't planned on having at all. It's cool how stuff like that happens. On that day, I got 522. So, the total was:

Words Thursday: 522
Words Total: 5510


Now it was time for some shit to go down. Chaos and mayhem is always easier to write, so I managed to get in 622 words, despite having no more time than any other day. Now it's time to put Brand and Macee through the ringer. But it's the weekend, and I always have a hard time finding a chance to write on the weekend. So, We'll see what I can manage. My total so far is now at:

Words Friday: 622
Words Total: 6132

Loquat, Not To Be Confused With Lobot

A nice dad joke for a title there, eh?

Today, we went for a walk on the greenbelt trails around our neighborhood. It was a nice walk, and it was about time I got out of the house for something other than going to the store or going to work. Along our walk, we found a tree that had a bunch of small yellow fruits on it. We tried to guess at what it might be, and with the help of our phones and the Google machine, we discovered that they were loquats.

We broke one open, pulled the seeds out and tried it. They were unexpectedly excellent. The tree wasn't on anyone's property, so we had no compunctions with filling our pockets with a bunch of these loquats, and bringing them home.


On the way, my son asked what the name of the fruit was again, because he'd forgotten the name. It's not like they were apples or something like that with a name you would remember. I tried to be funny, saying that I couldn't remember, it was cumquats or loquats or lo mein or chow mein, something like that. Terrible, I know. I'm especially good at bad jokes. It's a gift.

The funny thing was that the conversation turned from loquats to chow mein, and then to chow mein noodles, and how good those noodles are in the dinner dish known as Hawaiian Haystacks or Chinese Sundaes. Next thing you know, that's what we were having for dinner. So, be careful when you drop a dad joke, you never know where it might take you.

Anyone had Hawaiian Haystack or Chinese Sundaes before? How do you like them?

Wednesday, April 10, 2019

April Powers ®


Yeah, I've got an official branded logo for this thing now. I like to at least put some kind of picture with every post that I do, and now that I threw this thing together, it will make these daily writing updates a little easier.

Now, I missed my update that I should have posted yesterday. I wrote on Monday, let me see just how much...293. Yeah, not great, but at least it was something. I think I've made it a whole week now, right?

As of Monday, my total looked like this:

Words Today: 293
Words Total: 4040


Then on Tuesday, I continued my dominance over apathy and sloth, and wrote again. It went a little better. I had more time to devote to the writing. So, I was able to get in 673 words. So, at eight days of writing, my total looked like this

Words Today: 673
Words Total: 4713


This whole thing is coming along nicely. My Christmas story, "The Christmas Creature" is coming along nicely. I think the finale is getting close. It's time to blow some shit up and burn some shit down, amiright?

Maybe I'll post it here on my blog as a preview for all y'all who are the die hards that might actually consider reading it. What do you think? Should I?

Tuesday, April 9, 2019

April SHOWERS!


Weekends are hard for writing. There's no routine on the weekend. I barely managed to eke out 71 words on Saturday. Could Sunday be better? Would there be less distractions? Nope. Instead, there was a storm so big it turned into a tornado warning. Now that's what I call April showers.

I found other things to do rather than write the whole day long, and at about 11:30 PM, I finally force myself to sit down and write. I expected to be as uninspired as I was the day before, but it started to flow instead. I thought I'd written enough, and was going to quit, when I checked my word count and saw that it was at 493.

When you're that close to 500 words, you gotta go and add in one more sentence to get yourself over the top. When you give a mouse a cookie, though...

I wrote a few more sentences on top of that. And when I finally quit for real, I was at 808. So, much more respectable than yesterday. Pretty much couldn't be worse, unless I didn't write at all or something. So, there you go. The report for day 6 in a row. I'm going to keep at it, I think.

Words Today: 808
Words Total: 3747

Sunday, April 7, 2019

April power, With A Small P


Okay, I did write yesterday. So, I can say that I wrote every day so far. But it was a pretty bullshit attempt. I didn't really feel like it yesterday night, so I sat down, typed out a couple of sentences, and then said, "Eff it!" and quit for the day. Pretty weak sauce. My word count for the day was, I'm embarrassed to even say it, it was 71.

Maybe I can do better tomorrow, but I'm still doing it, and that matters, right?

Words Today: 71
Words Total: 2939

Creative Solution

My son got a checkerboard/chessboard at a garage sale the other day. It's nice, all made of wood and stuff. Only problem was that it didn't come with any pieces. I told him we'd have to pick some up at the store some time. They're easy to come by, and usually really cheap. But he didn't like that idea. He didn't want to wait. He was going to find something to take the place of the real checkers.

His first idea was to use Nerf darts. He'd also bought a huge bag of them at the garage sale. He had plenty for both sides of the board.

"That won't work, Little," I said, "they'll fall over all the time. Besides they have to be different colors. They're usually red and black. They can't all be blue."

A few minutes later he came back with the perfect solution.


They're the right size; they slide along the board nicely; and, when you need to make a king, they stack better than any checkers ever have. Oh, and they get an extra point because they're toys. I like Legos.

He's played a whole lot of checkers since yesterday. He's challenged everyone in the family, and some of us twice. He'd never played before this, but he's starting to get the rules pretty good. Soon, he might start winning.

You Ain't Nuthin!

Rish has been complaining a lot over on his blog about the crack in his windshield, and how big it has gotten. It grows by leaps and bounds every day. The Google machine tells me that cracks in windshields grow because of temperature changes. Cold caused the glass to contract and warmth causes it to expand. Mix the two together, and you get even faster growth in your window crack. If you're lucky, the crack travels to an edge of your windshield and then stops. If not it can go all the way across your windshield.

I am here to make a claim for the worst windshield crack. Rish says his is bad...get a load of this:


That's right! I have the best crack! It's the biggest crack! What? Why are you shaking your head?

Like what happened to Rish's car, the crack in my windshield grew quickly until it reached that size, then it stopped. It's been like that for a while. I don't have to register my car again for a few more months, so I'm just going to wait until then. I'd be super pissed if I replaced it now, and then a rock flung by a semi dinged it again, and I had to replace it twice in the same year.

I wonder what would happen if the crack traveled all the way across the windshield. Would the window just fall apart? Or maybe it would just wait until I got in an accident, and then it would explode into a million knife-like shards flying at my face. Hmmm...I guess only time will tell.