E is for Erratic

A month ago, I set out to blog once a week. By accident, I set out with a theme of titling each blog with the next letter of the alphabet, and this week is no different. Picking what the word for E was going to be, that was the hard part.

My first choice was e-reader. Earlier this year, when my Kindle started growing long in the tooth, I decided it was time to finish my separation from an Amazon centric world and bought a Kobo. Of the Kobo, let me say, I love it. I like the independence from the Amazon ecosystem, but more so, the builtin integration to browse both my local library and my Pocket collection. There are some rough bits around the edges, but all in all I like the device.

The problem with that theme is that I’ve been slipping back into physical books of late. It seemed disingenuous to talk about e-readers when the last three books I’ve read, and the book I’m currently reading, are all paper books.

To say e-book was out goes without say.

So I floundered, looking for a topic for this week. I was late at the start – through a series of (unusual for me) circumstances, I woke up extremely late yesterday (Saturday) morning. So late that I had already missed my self imposed deadline for having a new blog post.

I did what any self respecting writer with a themed topic would do, especially when that theme was simply titling each post with the next letter of the alphabet.

I turned to the dictionary.

But not at first. First I turned to the thesaurus, sure that it would have an appropriate synonym for words like procrastinate or delayed or even just put off. Luck was not with me, or my yellowed Rogett’s was just too geared for younger students. So I turned to my two volume, 1976 dictionary set, and started paging through the E listing. I knew e-books and e-readers, and anything e-centric, wouldn’t do. I had a few contenders, fingers holding my place as I leafed, when I realized what the root of the problem was.

I haven’t been blogging consistently the last year or so. I have my rational, and I’ve talked about it before, but I am trying to make up for that. Writers write, as they say, and how can I be a writer if I never write? And while the blog isn’t fiction, and isn’t even decent small town editorial quality, it is something I can point at. But of late, I’d become rather erratic in my posting.

And that’s how we got here today, folks, with E is for Erratic. I can’t promise it won’t happen again – it might even happen next week. But if it does, I’ll just point at this post with an apologetic smile and point out that I admitted early on these were going to be erratic at times.

The Curious Case of the Spare Domain

In a bit of unusual optimism and enthusiasm, I set up a Facebook author’s page last week. Up till now I had resisted the idea, mostly on account of not having actually published anything yet. But with my first story sale appearing in NewMyths,  it seemed like a brilliant time to change that.

I use the word brilliant with a pinch of salt here.

In setting up the page, I had to come up with a unique handle for the URL (i.e., http://www.facebook.com/somethinghere). I thought about using kodermike, which is the online name I use most everywhere, but decided against it because I didn’t want this to be just another copy of the same, but wanted it to be something unique and identifiable for the writing part of my life. It helps I was also doing an interview for a friend last week and one of her questions was whether I had an author page.

So, after a moment of genius (again, irony), I went with “CummingsWrites.” Then my brain did something evil and started thinking ahead, and the next thing you know I own the domain cummingswrites.com.

Only now I don’t know what to do with it. I thought about setting it up as a separate blog, a separate space all together where I could put my writing specific thoughts, observations, news, etc., leaving this blog (datanode.net) as a place where I could just put up my own personal entries. The only problem with that being that when you cut out the writing related posts, there really isn’t that much more to say.

For now, I have cummingswrites.com pointing here. I may eventually opt to swap that – make the blog into cummingswrites.com and just keep datanode pointing here. A lot of this is putting the horse not just ahead of the cart, but about a mile away.

If you have a thought, let me know. I’m very open to suggestion, as anyone that has witnessed me with my girls can attest to.

A fresh look

Browsing the other day, I found myself on an article over at http://danluu.com/. What struck me the most wasn’t what Dan had to say (or at least, that’s not all that struck me), but how bare bones the site was. No images, no complicated css, just text and more text.

I was smitten.

Blogs, my own included, have become so caught up in catching the eye and having visual appeal that I think I’ve forgotten that the heart of the blog is in sharing text with the reader. So I’ve found a theme that fits this more streamlined view – not as raw as Dan’s, but still fairly simple. I’ve removed a lot of the cruft that’s been hanging on to the site over the last year, the pages I wrote for using Scrivener or Storyist with Jamie Rubin’s Google spreadsheet scripts (I can still get that info to you if that’s why you stopped by – removed, but not deleted).

Let me know what you think. It’s a bare bones in places, but I think it does a decent job of giving what you came for.