Friday, January 16, 2009

I am a poor man, I haven't wealth nor fame. I have my two hands and a house to my name. (Day 43)

Day Six of the Lamictal at 100mg's. After tomorrow I begin 200mg's. That seems like an awful lot of milligrams.

So yesterday I got hit with the plague and I lost a whopping 12 pounds, but I'm glad to report after drinking a lot of gatorade, my cat keeping me company after I was done dry heaving and a pretty girl dealing with me I'm exponentially better. So you know, thats always good.

I don't wanna risk further vomitus exploits, so for now I'll just stick to toast and gatorade. Why mess with what works?

Just a side note, and I know a few of you will care about this, but EGM has shut down it's doors.

That sucks completely because it was the ultimate toilet read I feel, plus it was always a pretty interesting read and I always felt that the staff really cared about what they were putting out, and had a passion for gaming. What sucks most, I think, is that the entire staff was laid off, out on their ass, and I know as well as anyone that for a writer it's not exactly easy to get back on your feet.

But also coming from a writing perspective, I don't like that none of them got to have a true parting word. That the Wolverine Issue is the last one, period, and they basically never get that chance to at least give their two cents on something they dedicated their lives too.

A sincere thanks is honestly due to the guys and gals that made, and EGM as much fun as they did.

The problem with online content, while it is free which I guess is nice, is that in the magazine format it's so portable. It's actually nice to kick back with a magazine and mildly read through it when you're in the mood to do some light reading that you won't get too vested in for the time being. It's a great resource for checking new things out (in this type of medium) you may not have known about, or necessarily even thought about reading.

If you've spent as much time in airports, bus stations, car trips, buses, planes and in transition as I have, then you know that the convenience of a magazine is nothing short of life saving.

What I liked about EGM was their outside approach to everything. Theres still plenty of portal magazines, but I always feel like everything in that is glowering for the sake of selling a product, rather than catering to the consumers needs.

And it goes beyond even gaming magazines for me, but all magazines in general. What I liked particularly about this magazine was that it was just flat out interesting, even if you had a passing interest in the genre.

Whereas other genres of magazines like music, sports, tattoo, photography, car magazines, fashion or popular pretty much have to have a pretty heavy interest in to begin with.

And most become so convoluted; look at Rolling Stone and Alternative Press. Both are disguised as music magazines...but Rolling Stone can't make up it's mind anymore. Is it music? Is it political? Is it just pop culture all together? The lay out of that magazine tends to give me a headache because it's formatting is so dizzying. They try to cover so many topics to appeal to any, and everyone that in the end they just alienate themselves in the process. Not to say some of the writers aren't awesome. I really like Rob Sheffield, who wrote an amazing book called, "Love is a Mixtape: Life and Loss, One Song at a Time."

Alternative Press went somewhere from being a magazine about "alternative" music back in the 80's giving the cover to the Cure, to in the late 90's giving it to Puddle of Mudd, Korn, Limp Bizkit and Slipknot. Ever since then they can't rightfully claim to be an alternative resource when what they primarily cater to is whats in, whats trendy, whatever.

I'm sorry to make this all about magazines. But the truth is for a long time I considered being an actual honest-to-god journalist. And the truth is I can't do it. I can't kiss some ones ass I just don't care about, and unfortunately if you wanna make it in this market as a 'journalist' you pretty much have to shit where you eat, in terms of having any wiggle room whatsoever.

Theres no honesty in it, theres not truth to it, and it's just kind of revolting to be honest. I like WWTDD as much as the next person, but to call them anything outside of the realm of paparazzi is quite asinine. It's tabloids with balls, basically, and it's funny and all, but it's just filler.

But thats most of what passes for suitable journalism and press these days; filler. I was watching Conan late last night, and there was a commercial for Extra on, and the commercial said, "tune in for dramatic pictures of the US Airways plane crash". I had to pause for a second and question, "really?"

We need to throw in the word 'dramatic' for a plane crash? I suppose because the crash itself wasn't captivating enough, now theres dramatics involved?

It's a reflection of a culture thats so completely off base with reality, and I firmly fucking blame reality TV for that.

Everyone's so jaded. Something as terrifying as a plane crash, and even more miraculous that everyone survived...has to be punched the fuck up with god damned buzz words like "dramatic" and I can't stand that.

Thats what passes for journalism, and I don't like it, and I don't like seeing people I actually enjoyed lose their jobs and be released into a market that won't notice them or utilize them properly.

Thats all I got. I'm not sure if there will be an update for the next two days, as I may be going out of town but I'll make sure to recap!

Until tomorrow?

Thursday, January 15, 2009

I've had this burning my guts now for so long. (Day 42)

There won't be much of a post today, kids, as I'm currently experiencing what I like to call the "Thrill Ride Waves of Nausea".

I'm not cold sick, I'm pretty sure it's food poisoning. But I'm very dehydrated, I can't keep anything down (any time I drink water I get to revisit in all it's glory twenty minutes later) and I've lost about 11 pounds in two days. That can't be good.

I hope everyone else is in good spirits. I'm going to go lay down and die now.

Until tomorrow.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

It's time that I got moving on. (Day 41)

Day four of the 100mg's of lamictal.

On the 21st of this month I go back to the doctor and go on to the next step from there. I have no idea whats in store, or what to expect.

Today I worked a little bit on the follow up to Shootin' At a Mound of Dirt (please, please, please share the link with people) although I have no clue on where to submit it to when it's done, or if anyone will ever care.

You ever put so much into something and try to make it work? All my life I've always felt like the underdog, and even more so these days. I just want for once to be the one that comes out on top of it all. We all need a small victory here and there to get by, and right now I really could use that--if only in the smallest of capacities.

Right now I'm in a toss and tumble about shutting down Days Gone By and Piss and Vinegar. To be truthful I really, really enjoy both of them for what they are. I enjoy doing them and it's help me work on becoming a bit more disciplined and mature in certain respects, which are two areas I desperately need to improve in. But I don't know...I feel like this falls on deaf ears, every word and every sentence, paragraph or poorly constructed thought.

I stand alone as far as being a "writer". I don't really know anyone in the field, I have no idea where to go, or what my next step should be. It was nice to see the minute success of Shootin', but the thing is...unless I discover the proper channels, and discover them soon, this hole writing venture will come to a fast end.

If anyones reading this, which I highly doubt, and you have any idea on where I should go, someone to talk to about publishing, etc...please leave a comment. This is really the time to get involved. Otherwise I just have no clue what to do, and I'm sitting dead in the water.

Until tomorrow.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

The maggots in the eye of love won't copulate. (Day 40)

I just wanted to say thanks to everyone who went and checked out the story, and please if you haven't, do me a solid and check out Shootin' At a Mound of Dirt. It's done a lot better than I would have even imagines, and please send the link to a friend.

I'm dead tired right now. See, I fancy myself a bit of an innovator and last night I came up with the brilliant idea of doing a Wine Bong (instead of beer), and it goes down a lot easier, it's go more alcohol, and the way it hits you is...hard, to say the least.

Maybe last night wasn't the best night to go out drinking. See, I got home at exactly 6am, was asleep by 6:03, and was woken up exactly three hours later to go to a doctors appointment.

I can't explain to you what a challenge it truly is to not only wake up tired, but still very much intoxicated and realize you have the whole day in front of you. Especially having to sit in a doctors lobby waiting for them to poke, prod and inspect you like a Lab on display at the thoroughbred show.

The weird thing about the doctors office I go to, and make no mistake my doctor is a great guy, but the thing is it takes care of a lot of people who make up the lower rung of society (take me for example) so anytime you have a test, especially involving urine...better be prepared to have an audience.

Three times I've given urine samples, and each time theres been a nurse in the bathroom making sure I'm not switching samples or something like that even though I'm not being tested for drugs. In this case, I'm being analyzed for scrotum boulders.

After I was done peeing in a cup, which I've had to do about 10 times in past twenty days, I went and sat back in the doctors office playing with cotton balls and tongue depressors because I'm immature and no woman could ever love a 23 year old male who plays with tongue depressors and cotton balls (isolate that).

When my doctor came back, we had a quick run down of things that were issues, and the main focal point was my kidney stones. He told me treatments I could expect:

First they'll put a camera up the urethra, and implant a stint so the calcium can't continue to build up, and even if it does it won't scrape all the way or cause an infection (or at least greatly reduce the probability).

The other treatment, if it's bad enough all that happens to get rid of kidney stones, the other treatment is to break them up using sound waves.

What the everlasting shit! Why wouldn't the less painful and archaic method be the first line of defense.

As far along as we've progressed with technology there are parts of our medical fields that are so outlandishly tortuous that you'd think I'd have wronged someone in a previous life. How can we fit two billion songs on something smaller than a wallet, but still have to put cameras up patiences ass (and make them pay for it, too. Thats special...) to check for cancers and whatnot. I mean, why don't we prioritize our I have to suffer for it with a camera in my pee hole.

Thats all I've got for right now. Please check Shootin' At a Mound of Dirt, send it around and let me know how you feel about it, etc. It would mean the world to me. And also spread the word about Days Gone By. I'm screwed without you guys.

Until tomorrow.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Jeanie had a chance, well she really did. Instead she dropped out and had a couple of kids. (Day 39)

Day two of the increased amount of lamictal (100mg's). I'm feeling pretty positive about it.

So instead of bitching and moaning, and living in fear and so many other topics I've brought up for the past 38 days, I've decided to do something about it. Whatever, you know? Find that direction and move towards the goals I've set for myself. They might be small steps, but they're steps I've not taken God, here we go.

First off, I've never been to college, which is strange because thats always been a dream of mine. I just never felt like I could afford it, or anything like that. Or that I'd ever actually fit into that structure. But it's always been a big fantasy for me.

So I for the first time today filled out (or am in the process of, apparently I need my parents tax info...whatever, I guess it pays to be dirt poor) FAFSA. Why not, I can't continue just wondering what if.

The only thing I wanted to do this year was shake things up a bit, and I firmly believe that at the moment, while this might be a small step...I'm on my way to accomplishing that. Even in a minute, and pretty inconsequential way.

The second though has more to do with what I want to be in life, which is writing. During the D4 fiasco I was involved with (caused?) an editor at Punk News wrote a pretty...I guess the best term is 'scathing' article about me on his personal site, Bitter Press, which I'd been a fan of for quite some time. To be quite honest, I was kind of honored to even see my name on his site, despite the capacity.

We had a few exchanges via e-mail after my rebuttal to his article (link above, its at the bottom of the twice aforementioned link) and the end result was an invitation to submit a short story for his Guest Fiction column.

I'd made my mind up about this quite awhile back that I would do it, but first and foremost I wanted to work on the short story compilation book I'm doing. I've been working hard on this book because you only get one debut in a specific field. After that it's working on whatever, but this is the foundation, the first step and a declaration all at once. You only get one chance for that, and to be honest I want to give it more than my best. I want to tap the reserves and beyond, so I've been pushing myself as hard as I could to do this. Whether or not anyone else digs this, what I do, I mean...I doubt they will and thats fine. To quote the Late Lester Bangs, "I'll probably never write a masterpiece, but so what?"

I want to exceed what it is I may or may not be capable of. Thats strictly on a personal level.

So fast forward a few months. The short story book now has a name (it's had one for quite some time, thanks to my brother-separated-by-blood, Matt Ramone) which is (ready for the big unveil? Drum roll please) File Under Powerviolence. I have one publisher who's expressed at this point, a modicum amount of interest in putting it out, but right now I'm trying to keep the options wide open.

But Powerviolence is storyboarded now, the listing of the stories are put out. There are about 6 or 7 stories that I want to put in it. I just need to finish up basically one and a half stories, and edit them a little (lot) bit. Then I think I'm good to go.

But I've never actually put myself out on the line in a big spectrum, and I'm realizing that if I want to see any type of success in terms of people being interested in it, even in the slightest, I have to start testing the waters. So in comes Bitter Press.

Bitter Press' Guest Fiction column is a great resource for some very, very interesting and good writers, and I think it's damned commendable for Jesse to give these authors a chance to be read, because it's a tough, tough field and any type of break you can get is detrimental to someone not wanting to put their head in an over.

As of today I'm now a part of the Guest Fiction column, and I know I don't stand up (like, at all) to stories like Matt Klingensmith's The Jeffersonian, davidbdlade's The Cutting Board, or Brian Costello's An Unfortunate Incident Involving Spritzers, Manuscripts and Post-Goth Hostesses.

I really think if you have some time to kill, maybe put the Facebook applications on hold for a hot minute and go read everything up there. I'm sorry not everyone got linked, I just wanted to give an example of the awesome, but each other is worth checking out.

I submitted a story thats pretty near and dear to me, thats going to be in Powerviolence called Shooting At a Mound of Dirt.

The feedback has been somewhat good so thats cool. But I felt like addressing why I'd go to Bitter Press after such a wonderful write up of my actions, and why I chose the story I did.

I chose to go ahead and do this because despite it all, what Jesse wrote was an honest and very well worded account. While I disagreed to an extent, I always appreciate honesty, and I always appreciate when people are confrontational when it's appropriate and well put.

You can only go so long with people who are going to support you no matter what, and God Bless them for that, but I feel you have to have a certain responsibility to yourself if you want to be completely honest. So many people refuse to acknowledge anything thats negatively said about them to hold up their egos. But how does that accomplish anything? Why not go against the grain if you get the opportunity to do so?

As I mentioned, I was a fan of Bitter Press prior to the write-up and invitation. So that didn't hinder my decision in the least.

I just want to push myself in anyway I can. Jesse is an extremely talented dude, and I'm jealous and want to grasp on to anyone who better than me (which is basically anyone).

But why Shootin' At a Mound of Dirt? There are a few of you who've read other stories I've written, and to be honest I feel this was an honest and fair question posed. Shootin' is one of the admittedly weaker stories in Powerviolence. But despite how it stands up to other stories, it's an integral and important part of the book because of it's strength. It stands out like a sore thumb, a black sheep with neon signs pointing at it, mostly because of it's style.

But I chose it because of it's weaknesses. Why? Because it'd be easy to come out swinging with a story I personally feel is stronger (and others feel as well) and I love taking the difficult and hard road. God forbid. But I also chose it because while its a bit weaker, it leaves room for improvement along the way, and it might prolong whatever longevity I may, or may not have.

It's a story I really liked a lot, and I wanted to give it a fair shot because I know there are a few stories that, to say the least, will easily overshadow it when the time comes.

So heres to the future and what it may bring.

Hey, what do you guys think of the earlier posts? Do you prefer this, or the nightly posts? I kind of like the earlier posts...I can't tell you how many times I'd take a nap, wake up late and then freak out that I hadn't updated yet. Plus this helps me remember to take the medications earlier. So what do you think?

Until tomorrow.

Until tomorrow.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Although she saw the mark, the arrow missed. (Day 38)

Today might as well be considered a brand new 'Day 1'.

Today I started taking 100mg's of the Lamictal. Each time I go another step with this medication, it doubles. To be quite honest I definitely noticed the change from 50 to 100 about an hour later.

I'm surprised I've stuck with it long, and what surprises me further is the simple fact that I've actually stuck it out, and have a generally positive view for the medication. This truly is one of the better decisions I've made.

Decisions are weird things sometimes. I mean really, analyze a decision you've made. Weight it towards what could have happened, and what really did. Take apart the variables and really inspect how if that one tiny decision you made along the way had such a domino effect. Damn the Devil living in the details.

Today I helped a friend of my mothers load some groceries we were holding for her into the back of her car. Her husband I guess is a bit of a drinker, but this lady I truly feel drove him to the bottle.

We'd been holding her groceries for her because she was in Phoenix (which is quite a distance from where I live) to give her husband a ride to quickly say hello to a friend of his.

What got me was how she basically just shat all over the guy while he wasn't around. I guess he stayed too long inside the house, so she drove back to Arizona City without telling him and leaving him without a ride back home. She said, "he can walk for all I care." Wonderful lady. Also, the guy is I mean, she's just a saint.

While I was loading her car, she pointed out a cracked rear-view light he'd I guess damaged. She wound up getting completely unglued, calling him 'irresponsible', a 'drunk', 'dip-shit', 'imbecile', 'moron', and waste of life that was 'beyond help'.

I understand frustration, and I know that the cracked light isn't exactly a nice thing to discover on a new car. I also know that mistakes happen, and that the cracked light may just be her newest thing to bitch about but when people I know share their grievances about their significant others most of the time you can see that part of the reason they are upset is because they genuinely care about that person. But from her, I got a sense of a very, very palpable hatred for the guy.

I've never met him, and this was the first time I'd ever met this lady but her, who she is really is what I feel is wrong with marriages and relationships. I really dislike this type of woman because instead of being an adult and discussing the problems like a responsible human being, she'd rather go around and make goddamned sure everyone in ear shot knows this guy is a pile of shit.

I'm a firm believer that if you are going to be with someone and you truly, truly love them then you have to accept the whole package. Good, bad and ugly.

If you don't want to be with someone, then just go. It isn't fair to either person. But this lady really...I mean, I don't want to come off as sexist or misogynist but I really feel that this is something a lot of women do these days, and it drives me up the fucking wall.

You want to love a guy, then love him, but you don't need to shit on his parade every step of the way. You can't change a person, that has to be a desire already in them and maybe you can inspire that. But it kills me that there are so many women that just come down so often and so hard on the men in their lives for cracking a beer here and there, or making a simple goddamned mistake.

If you ever wonder why chivalry is dead, it's because women like this have driven men to look forward to the part in the nuptials that say "til death do us part".

To think they made a decision to get married and be miserable. The thing about this honestly makes people around you miserable too. I'm betting this guy is a pretty decent dude who's been aged horrible by his squawking yenta of a wife.

I'll be getting into this more in the next few days.

Until tomorrow.