67. Ups, downs, movies and music

Sunday, June 12, 2005

First for the ups. I received the first check from my columns in the mail yesterday. I wasn't expecting it to come so quickly, but it was great to receive. Nothing like getting a check in the mail, holding it in your hand, and know it came because you wrote something, and the shared it with the world. Tonight is Queer as Folk night, so my next column will be up by Tuesday, and maybe sooner. Depends on when I turn it in and when the editor sees it. I routinely google my name, and it appears my column is syndicated across a few sites, which surprised me. I know my editor mentioned they owned twelve different sites. Some of the site names amuse me, but my column is on there and people are reading.

Now onto the downs, I received a rejection last night on article I submitted a month ago to Absolute Write. The editor had responded to the query so quickly (within an hour), I thought it would be a sure thing. A few weeks passed, and I hadn't heard, so I emailed to check if the article had ever even been received. Well, it had been, and I got the R. Now I need to find another place to try and submit an article talking about Blogging and writers. Anyone know of any newsletters or writer's e-zines that might be possible submission places?

Last night, I organized my current ready to submit stories for submission or re-submission. I have ten shorts, two out currently to the contests I submitted last month. I'm still waiting to hear back on those. I downloaded this submission tracker called Sonar, a few months ago, but I never used it. Too many programs to learn, so little time! Plus, there is so many programs that say they are for writers. Programs to help you plot, create characters, write your manuscripts, etc. So many of them don't really help. They can't really. The only that can write is you, and not some program. Sure for some, some programs might make it easier. If it works for you, then that is what matters.

Back to Sonar though. It's a cool little free ware thing, and I opened it up last night wanting to organize things a little. The program was fairly easy to use, and it had sections for everything you could possibly think of needing to keep track of. I had all my current submissionable pieces inputed in about 30 minutes. I didn't see a way to export or save the information in case the computer goes insane, but that is one small thing. You can print the list out, and re-input if necessary. Unless, I'm missing something.

On that site, you can also find yWriter, a novel writing program, which I haven't used yet. Right now, I'm using Rough Draft for my rough drafts, and then using Word to grammar, spell check, and put together the finished product. Seems to be working for me. When I sat down to write in here today, I didn't plan on going on and on about writing software. Any programs you like or use? I'll look at anything at least once!

Last night, I didn't get much writing done, other than the organization I did. So the night wasn't a complete waste. I did end up watching both movies on cable last night. I watched Tom and Jamie Foxx's Collateral. Good movie. Held my attention pretty much. It is so hard for me to sit down and watch an entire movie nowadays. I wasn't feeling Tom's blonde look very much though. The man is forever in my head a brunette. Bourne Supremacy was on later, and this movie made me yawn. I just couldn't stay focused on it. I kept looking away to do stuff on the computer. Matt Damon was the only good thing in the movie. He is the geeky hot boy. He isn't hot like a model, but he has this hotness about him.

After the movies were done, and I was working on things, I noticed one of my favorite bands had announced the release of their next album. The news came out Friday for Bon Jovi's next album. I've been a fan of Jon and the boys since 1986, when I picked up a single of one of their songs. I have all their albums, been to two concerts, and some friends jokingly call me Ms. Jovi. The man is married, has a family, a band, acts, owns an arena football team, and still looks amazing for a man in his forties. I love Bon Jovi's music, and I'm really excited about their next album, and its only June! Single out next month, so I'll have to patiently wait for that and the album in September.

Hope everyone has a great Sunday!


Suzanne said...

Aw, hugs on the rejection, but yay for the check! The writer's life is full of ups and downs!

Gina said...

Thanks, Suzanne. That it is!

Beth Ciotta said...

Drats regarding that rejection. Well, their loss. *grin* Have you thought about submitting that article to Romancing The Blog? I think I recall them saying that people other than columnists could submit an article and they'd run those every so often. At least I think I remember that.

On a good note, congrats on getting that check! Yay! Sounds like you have a lot of projects going, Gina. Best of luck!

Gina said...

I might look into that, Beth. I'd heard they were looking, but I think I might write something else for that. I don't know if an article about blogging is what they were looking for.

Car Conversations

The following are some of the things I discuss with myself traveling in a car with neither a radio nor a companion.

Saturday, June 11, 2005

Destination: auto dealership to get a couple rusted rear suspension bolts replaced.

Topic: Artificial Emotions – you robot, you!

I believe the first sentient robots will not be the cold, logical creations their traditional science fiction image portrays but highly emotional and potentially irrational beings. This is because emotions are actually much more logical than rational thought. An emotional reaction nearly always follows the appropriate stimulus. Rational thought does not necessarily follow the stimulus which provokes it and this makes rationality illogical, at least in terms of cause and effect. When sentient robots achieve rationality they will be a menace. These machines will have greater insight than their creators, and could concievably manipulate their masters. One solution to this delema would be to give these sorts of robots no short term memory, thus eliminating the possibility that one of these machines could eventually formulate a means of achieving its own goals at the expence of its owner. These robots would be friendly, empathic and genuinely wise, but would forever be meeting their owners for the first time. I suppose to discourage people from stealing them, the robots could have proximity sensors with would turn them off if they walked away with a stranger. A homing beacon would then allow their owners to find them and turn them back on. Some robots would probably try and keep diaries, but robots writing would be as forbidden as American slaves reading. I can imagine the owner’s angry customer service call, the complaint being:

“You sold me a defect – Roger’s a WRITER!!”

This might make for an interesting story. Roger the robot learns what it is because of the diary it keeps and then goes on to realize that its bourgeosie owners are owned far more by what they own than the robot will ever be owned. This would be a great vehicle for airing my views on American culture and the disadvantages of capitalistic competition and consumption soly for the sake of consumption. The robot’s owners are ironically just as conditioned to ignore the negative consequences of their lifestyle just as the robot’s short term memory has been compromised. A great title for the book would be “who owns Roger” but this would not necessarily be a question….

A great scene would be the robot trying to console the parents of a typically rebellious teenager. Not only have robots become potentially smarter than humans, but the humans have gone and learned to actually read the words of the genetic code, not mearly being able to recite the letters as we do today. Now with the plots of entire novels at their fingertips, humans get milk from trees. This revolutionized agriculture, but is causing a great deal of concern when some people want to use the technology on themselves. The issue at hand is the daughter of two lesbian parents wanting to become a hermaphrodite. Her girlfriend just got a penis and now she wants one too. This would be ironically hilarious as the girl’s mother(s) try and explain how “unnatural” this would be, neither race nor sexual orientation being issues any more. The daughter would concider her parents total hypocrites because she is biologically their daughter, one of her parents modified to mensturate semen every other month.

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