izmeina: (Default)
Was supposed to have posted this serpent snippet ages ago but sort of got distracted by Nanowrimo and an assortments of tweets from #Trumplethinskin

One of the more useful and unusual books about writing that I have recently encountered is Becoming a Writer by Dorothea Brande

If you can get past the antiquated and annoying ‘he man’ language, it is actually full of useful ideas and information.
It is very different than most other books on this subject in that it does not deal at all with plots, three act structures, character arcs, dialogue and all the usual things one would expect to be covered in a book about writing. It is more concerned with the mindset that is required to write, how to develop it and the delicate juggling act required to balance the conflicting aspects of the mind.

It would be more accurately described as a book less about writing and more about Summoning the Muse.

The 3 most important ideas in this book I found are

1 Sneak past the snarky carping inner editor


By writing first thing in the morning after waking up - before turning on the radio, talking to anyone (or especially these days - checking the smart phone) it is possible to bypass the pesky inner editor and let the subconscious run riot on the page. It is also a good idea not to reread these pages lest you unleash the inner editor or give up in despair at the awfulness of your rambling purple prose.

2 Tame the Beast

The subconscious is a creative creature but childish and wilful and prone to fits of procrastination. It has to be tamed and disciplined if it is to serve you well.
She recommends this be done by writing first thing in the morning to develop the habit and then later to choose a time to write and to keep to it. No negotiations and no excuses. At the appointed hour you turn up at your desk and write. It is best to pick different times on different days to train your subconscious to be able to produce the words on demand.
If you stick to this schedule the subconscious will soon learn that its temper tantrums and trickery are of no avail and will then conform to your will.

3 Feed Your Head

The creative self needs lots of new experiences to keep it inspired and amused. Go to museums and art galleries. Be a tourist in your own town. Or else be condemned to constantly replaying significant emotional episodes from childhood when everything was truly new and magical and almost every day an adventure.

If this advice sounds suspiciously similar to that offered in Julia Cameron’s “The Way of the Artist” that is because it is. Only some 50 years older.
izmeina: (Default)
Was supposed to have posted this serpent snippet ages ago but sort of got distracted by Nanowrimo and an assortments of tweets from #Trumplethinskin

One of the more useful and unusual books about writing that I have recently encountered is Becoming a Writer by Dorothea Brande

If you can get past the antiquated and annoying ‘he man’ language, it is actually full of useful ideas and information.
It is very different than most other books on this subject in that it does not deal at all with plots, three act structures, character arcs, dialogue and all the usual things one would expect to be covered in a book about writing. It is more concerned with the mindset that is required to write, how to develop it and the delicate juggling act required to balance the conflicting aspects of the mind.

It would be more accurately described as a book less about writing and more about Summoning the Muse.

The 3 most important ideas in this book I found are

1 Sneak past the snarky carping inner editor


By writing first thing in the morning after waking up - before turning on the radio, talking to anyone (or especially these days - checking the smart phone) it is possible to bypass the pesky inner editor and let the subconscious run riot on the page. It is also a good idea not to reread these pages lest you unleash the inner editor or give up in despair at the awfulness of your rambling purple prose.

2 Tame the Beast

The subconscious is a creative creature but childish and wilful and prone to fits of procrastination. It has to be tamed and disciplined if it is to serve you well.
She recommends this be done by writing first thing in the morning to develop the habit and then later to choose a time to write and to keep to it. No negotiations and no excuses. At the appointed hour you turn up at your desk and write. It is best to pick different times on different days to train your subconscious to be able to produce the words on demand.
If you stick to this schedule the subconscious will soon learn that its temper tantrums and trickery are of no avail and will then conform to your will.

3 Feed Your Head

The creative self needs lots of new experiences to keep it inspired and amused. Go to museums and art galleries. Be a tourist in your own town. Or else be condemned to constantly replaying significant emotional episodes from childhood when everything was truly new and magical and almost every day an adventure.

If this advice sounds suspiciously similar to that offered in Julia Cameron’s “The Way of the Artist” that is because it is. Only some 50 years older.
izmeina: (Default)
Habits begin as cobwebs and end as cables.




On Wednesday evening I finally passed the finish line in Nanoland. For the first time I actually kept to the daily target that I had set myself of not just 1,666 words which is necessary to cross the finish line on the last day but the rather higher 2,222 words per day. This serpent is a sucker for pretty numbers.

I've aimed quite often for the safety net of an average of 2,000 per day but never seemed able to keep it up for much longer than a couple of weeks.
This time was different due to one simple new trick.

The Early Bird catches the worm )




The video sums it up so perfectly. Establishing productive habits really is like having an army of zombie minions at your disposal.

We don't rise to the level of our expectations, we fall to the level of our training." –
Archilochos


Nathan Lozeron has loads of other videos devoted to productivity porn and it's all the real thing. No click bait junk to be found. Well not yet.
izmeina: (circle serpent)
Habits begin as cobwebs and end as cables.




On Wednesday evening I finally passed the finish line in Nanoland. For the first time I actually kept to the daily target that I had set myself of not just 1,666 words which is necessary to cross the finish line on the last day but the rather higher 2,222 words per day. This serpent is a sucker for pretty numbers.

I've aimed quite often for the safety net of an average of 2,000 per day but never seemed able to keep it up for much longer than a couple of weeks.
This time was different due to one simple new trick.

The Early Bird catches the worm )




The video sums it up so perfectly. Establishing productive habits really is like having an army of zombie minions at your disposal.

We don't rise to the level of our expectations, we fall to the level of our training." –
Archilochos


Nathan Lozeron has loads of other videos devoted to productivity porn and it's all the real thing. No click bait junk to be found. Well not yet.
izmeina: (Default)
It’s just past the half way mark over in Nanoland.

I’ve got myself a cosy cushion of words and presently almost aimlessly meandering down the mountain to the finish line which is almost within reach.

It has been a very strange month so far. Never have I gotten to the starting blocks with so little in the way of inspiration. Like The Beast 66 himself, this serpent's planning and preparation for this year's event was non- existent - even less than for the very first year I joined when I signed up a couple of days before the start of November.

At first I figured that I could always resurrect and expand on a super heroes project done earlier this year as part of an online course

So that was the fallback position in the event that nothing more interesting turned up in the meantime.

But it was listening to a correspondent’s report from the election in the USA and the first of the three very nasty debates that the little green light went on in this serpent’s skull.

Agent Orange )
izmeina: a big eared American eagle listening to everything (big brother)
It’s just past the half way mark over in Nanoland.

I’ve got myself a cosy cushion of words and presently almost aimlessly meandering down the mountain to the finish line which is almost within reach.

It has been a very strange month so far. Never have I gotten to the starting blocks with so little in the way of inspiration. Like The Beast 66 himself, this serpent's planning and preparation for this year's event was non- existent - even less than for the very first year I joined when I signed up a couple of days before the start of November.

At first I figured that I could always resurrect and expand on a super heroes project done earlier this year as part of an online course

So that was the fallback position in the event that nothing more interesting turned up in the meantime.

But it was listening to a correspondent’s report from the election in the USA and the first of the three very nasty debates that the little green light went on in this serpent’s skull.

Agent Orange )
izmeina: (Default)
Today it was time to indulge in some serious nostalgia. Not just a visit to my favourite lunatic asylum but also a sneak peek at the work in progress that is Sculptures by the Sea which officially opens this Friday.

Then there was also the matter of decadent indulgence. Back in December 2014, New Edition book shop was filled with an assortment of gorgeous tomes all out in time for the Christmas craziness.

Including this one




The walls are adorned with promotional pictures from China Mieville’s “Kraken” which must be a good 5 years old by now but is the perfect theme for a book store located in the university quarter of Fremantle and less than 5 minutes walk to the Indian Ocean.
It was while flicking through this book that I had the idea - “What if New Edition were really a recruitment centre for an ancient Kraken cult?” and figured this would be fun idea for a possible plot for next November. And never mind just the book store - the whole town could be in on the scheme. The following 12 months provided an abundance of circumstantial evidence in the form of street art and assorted graffiti.

Of course the inner serpent would have none of this nonsense. There is only one true faith and that is the Church of Serpentology and NO you do not need this infernal tome or any other for research purposes. Not just because you already have several paperbacks with most of the stories and they are all online these days anyway. But this book is a ridiculous $49.99, it weighs a ton, is suitable only for a rather large coffee table and anyway you could probably get it online for half the price. But most importantly of all - you do not NEED it and you cannot justify wasting precious pennies on such decadence when the book shop is filled with endless rows of interesting and useful books.

So reason and logic prevailed. That was until the evening of a big Nanowrimo write in. There was a table full of books and mysterious envelopes as prizes. I picked the one from New Edition. It was worth 30 silver sickles with a use by date of NEVER unlike most vouchers which are valid for between 6 and 12 months.
Now this was the perfect excuse for some decadent indulgence. The summer solstice seemed the most auspicious time to snaffle the Squid. Problem was that it was not there. After all, the book was published in November 2014 and was not going to be hanging around taking up precious space on the shelves waiting for Izzie to win the lottery. There were also many other gorgeous books on the shelves worthy of serpent attention including the Thing Explainer (complicated stuff in simple words)

No harm in asking. They said they would have it back in stock in mid January and today was the first day since then that I have darkened the doors of the store. Once again I could not find it in the Sci fi and Cult fiction section so asked at the counter and one of the book sellers came back with the big black tentacled tome within the minute. It turns out that it was in the classics section along with the complete works of Edgar Allan Poe, the Annotated Alice, Annotated Brothers Grimm and an assortment of other enormous, gorgeous and very expensive books.

So I handed over the gift voucher and 20 silver sickles and took possession of the Tentacled Tome. From there I made my way to the new arts centre (and old lunatic asylum) and sat in the gorgeous courtyard browsing through the pages and all the pretty pictures until it was closing time. Then I was off to catch the bus to see the sculptures by the sea.
So inspired by the monstrous abominations on the pages, an assortment of strange sculptures on the sea shore shining and glowing in the spooky light of the setting sun, it was a gorgeous way to end the day.


Back in the real world there are soul sucking vampires, weasels, werewolves, zombie prime ministers and other evil monsters lurking and snivelling and indulging in their usual arse covering, back stabbing, cost cutting goblin ways but the dreadful recent resurrections of Tony Abbott and John Howard, the triumphs of Trump and the simpering sniveling litany of excuses spouted by Goblin George Pell are best left for another day.

They are where the true incarnations of horror and cosmic monstrosity can be found.
izmeina: a spooky blue Cthulhu brandishing wicked weapons (pen and paintbrush) (squid)
Today it was time to indulge in some serious nostalgia. Not just a visit to my favourite lunatic asylum but also a sneak peek at the work in progress that is Sculptures by the Sea which officially opens this Friday.

Then there was also the matter of decadent indulgence. Back in December 2014, New Edition book shop was filled with an assortment of gorgeous tomes all out in time for the Christmas craziness.

Including this one




The walls are adorned with promotional pictures from China Mieville’s “Kraken” which must be a good 5 years old by now but is the perfect theme for a book store located in the university quarter of Fremantle and less than 5 minutes walk to the Indian Ocean.
It was while flicking through this book that I had the idea - “What if New Edition were really a recruitment centre for an ancient Kraken cult?” and figured this would be fun idea for a possible plot for next November. And never mind just the book store - the whole town could be in on the scheme. The following 12 months provided an abundance of circumstantial evidence in the form of street art and assorted graffiti.

Of course the inner serpent would have none of this nonsense. There is only one true faith and that is the Church of Serpentology and NO you do not need this infernal tome or any other for research purposes. Not just because you already have several paperbacks with most of the stories and they are all online these days anyway. But this book is a ridiculous $49.99, it weighs a ton, is suitable only for a rather large coffee table and anyway you could probably get it online for half the price. But most importantly of all - you do not NEED it and you cannot justify wasting precious pennies on such decadence when the book shop is filled with endless rows of interesting and useful books.

So reason and logic prevailed. That was until the evening of a big Nanowrimo write in. There was a table full of books and mysterious envelopes as prizes. I picked the one from New Edition. It was worth 30 silver sickles with a use by date of NEVER unlike most vouchers which are valid for between 6 and 12 months.
Now this was the perfect excuse for some decadent indulgence. The summer solstice seemed the most auspicious time to snaffle the Squid. Problem was that it was not there. After all, the book was published in November 2014 and was not going to be hanging around taking up precious space on the shelves waiting for Izzie to win the lottery. There were also many other gorgeous books on the shelves worthy of serpent attention including the Thing Explainer (complicated stuff in simple words)

No harm in asking. They said they would have it back in stock in mid January and today was the first day since then that I have darkened the doors of the store. Once again I could not find it in the Sci fi and Cult fiction section so asked at the counter and one of the book sellers came back with the big black tentacled tome within the minute. It turns out that it was in the classics section along with the complete works of Edgar Allan Poe, the Annotated Alice, Annotated Brothers Grimm and an assortment of other enormous, gorgeous and very expensive books.

So I handed over the gift voucher and 20 silver sickles and took possession of the Tentacled Tome. From there I made my way to the new arts centre (and old lunatic asylum) and sat in the gorgeous courtyard browsing through the pages and all the pretty pictures until it was closing time. Then I was off to catch the bus to see the sculptures by the sea.
So inspired by the monstrous abominations on the pages, an assortment of strange sculptures on the sea shore shining and glowing in the spooky light of the setting sun, it was a gorgeous way to end the day.


Back in the real world there are soul sucking vampires, weasels, werewolves, zombie prime ministers and other evil monsters lurking and snivelling and indulging in their usual arse covering, back stabbing, cost cutting goblin ways but the dreadful recent resurrections of Tony Abbott and John Howard, the triumphs of Trump and the simpering sniveling litany of excuses spouted by Goblin George Pell are best left for another day.

They are where the true incarnations of horror and cosmic monstrosity can be found.
izmeina: (Default)
Izzie has finally slinked out of the dungeons. The days of slaving over a steaming keyboard are now over. I lingered for a day or so before trading in the pretty green skin for the purple banner of Nanowrimo victory.

The slow and steady plodding has finally paid off. The muses dropped by once or twice during the whole first three weeks before gate crashing the party on Monday. They've been hanging around ever since providing inspiration from the unlikeliest places.

So much nasty awful stuff has been going on in the real world. They made my own attempts at inventing a nihilistic death cult look exceedingly pathetic indeed. It's just as well the wannabee writers are not running the world. It would be a whole lot worse than it already is.

After all "Only Trouble is interesting"

I gave in to the temptation of buying a particularly wicked and twisted collection of writing prompts but still not worked out how to get the thing out of the Kindle Cloud and on to the crappy little tablet.

I will be saving this special stash of nasties for the new year since it would only have been a distraction in November.

Having proved that the inner serpent can churn out the words given a deadline, the next step is to master the dark art of finishing stuff and putting it out there. The inner critic is not amused at that appalling idea.

So now it's time to go sniffing, snooping and shopping in MOOC land again. This time last year I had started a fascinating course on Terrorism and Counter terrorism but had to drop it half way due to unexpected events and overseas adventures.

So many courses are now available all year round to do at your own pace including that one but one thing I have learned from Nanowrimo is that there's nothing quite so motivating as an external deadline.

Just slinked over to Coursera to take a quick peek. Looks like they've nuked all the old records from the golden days of the Freebies. (They didn't but just made them very hard to find)

Oh well. It was fun while it lasted.
izmeina: a snippet of Escher's circle of serpents (escher)
Izzie has finally slinked out of the dungeons. The days of slaving over a steaming keyboard are now over. I lingered for a day or so before trading in the pretty green skin for the purple banner of Nanowrimo victory.

The slow and steady plodding has finally paid off. The muses dropped by once or twice during the whole first three weeks before gate crashing the party on Monday. They've been hanging around ever since providing inspiration from the unlikeliest places.

So much nasty awful stuff has been going on in the real world. They made my own attempts at inventing a nihilistic death cult look exceedingly pathetic indeed. It's just as well the wannabee writers are not running the world. It would be a whole lot worse than it already is.

After all "Only Trouble is interesting"

I gave in to the temptation of buying a particularly wicked and twisted collection of writing prompts but still not worked out how to get the thing out of the Kindle Cloud and on to the crappy little tablet.

I will be saving this special stash of nasties for the new year since it would only have been a distraction in November.

Having proved that the inner serpent can churn out the words given a deadline, the next step is to master the dark art of finishing stuff and putting it out there. The inner critic is not amused at that appalling idea.

So now it's time to go sniffing, snooping and shopping in MOOC land again. This time last year I had started a fascinating course on Terrorism and Counter terrorism but had to drop it half way due to unexpected events and overseas adventures.

So many courses are now available all year round to do at your own pace including that one but one thing I have learned from Nanowrimo is that there's nothing quite so motivating as an external deadline.

Just slinked over to Coursera to take a quick peek. Looks like they've nuked all the old records from the golden days of the Freebies. (They didn't but just made them very hard to find)

Oh well. It was fun while it lasted.
izmeina: (Don't panic)
It's strange to think that ten years ago I had a laptop but no internet but still managed to post far more than now when Cyberia is just a couple of clicks away. Even October 2014 had more posts than this month and back then there was the rather significant distraction of an online Python programming course which often had this serpent slaving over a hot keyboard at 2 in the morning desperately tweeking some sad and pathetic attempt at the weekly assignments.

This year there is the rather less rigorous "Science of Happiness" online course which consists of a whole lot of videos and a bunch of multiple choice questions each week.
I'm 4 weeks behind schedule but as everything is due by 24th November it is not yet a big deal. The moral of the story is that no matter how good one's intentions and willingness to learn, serpent nature dictates that homework will be submitted as near to the deadline as possible.

I've since discovered that the Edx certificates proclaim that a student has passed the requirements of such and such a course without giving details of the actual grade. Pity because I was rather amused by the 110% I got in the Superheroes and popular culture course. That magnificent number is nowhere to be seen on the certificate.

Soon the latest Nanowrimo adventure begins and there will be even less squiggling in Cyberia during November unless I set aside a section for warm ups.

In the meantime, still searching for the perfect Nano cafe for squiggling, plotting and planning away from the Big Mac keyboard.
izmeina: (Don't panic)
It's strange to think that ten years ago I had a laptop but no internet but still managed to post far more than now when Cyberia is just a couple of clicks away. Even October 2014 had more posts than this month and back then there was the rather significant distraction of an online Python programming course which often had this serpent slaving over a hot keyboard at 2 in the morning desperately tweeking some sad and pathetic attempt at the weekly assignments.

This year there is the rather less rigorous "Science of Happiness" online course which consists of a whole lot of videos and a bunch of multiple choice questions each week.
I'm 4 weeks behind schedule but as everything is due by 24th November it is not yet a big deal. The moral of the story is that no matter how good one's intentions and willingness to learn, serpent nature dictates that homework will be submitted as near to the deadline as possible.

I've since discovered that the Edx certificates proclaim that a student has passed the requirements of such and such a course without giving details of the actual grade. Pity because I was rather amused by the 110% I got in the Superheroes and popular culture course. That magnificent number is nowhere to be seen on the certificate.

Soon the latest Nanowrimo adventure begins and there will be even less squiggling in Cyberia during November unless I set aside a section for warm ups.

In the meantime, still searching for the perfect Nano cafe for squiggling, plotting and planning away from the Big Mac keyboard.
izmeina: (Default)
It's October and spring is well and truly in the air. Aside from the return of the sizzling stinking hot weather which usually arrives some time in late November, there's plenty of things to look forward to this time of year.

The flowers are blooming like crazy and the pecan trees have finally come out with their first leaves. All those nuts I planted several months ago have also come to life.
Even the acorns gathered from the serpentine spiritual home in Eden Vale have survived several summers and are now on their second sets of new leaves.

This was also the time of looking forward to visiting the Festival of Country Gardens down south. That had been a ritual for a good 12 years but has been off the agenda since 2013.
Slinking in the gardens and the squiggling frenzy that is Nanowrimo have been associated in the serpentine mind for a long time. There will be special cause for nostalgia this November since the days and dates exactly match 2009 when I signed up for the insane venture for the first time.

This year there's so many workshops and events in assorted libraries that I will be too busy to indulge in too much reminiscing about 'the good old days' but I have dusted off the old Dark Grimoire tarot deck in memory of 2009.

Then there's also Halloween to look forward to. It's sort of silly being in the middle of spring but nowhere near as ridiculous as Christmas where the media and retailers insist that we are in the middle of winter.
Instead of carving creepy pumpkin lanterns, will be planting giant pumpkin seeds and looking around to see who has got the spookiest party and looking to find the creepiest adornments for the Lair.
The Mexican Day of the Dead festival has become a big thing here in the last few years.

But one thing above all has marked the real return of spring, boom and bloom in this wide brown land. Monday 14th September was the day the Mad Monk got dumped and the grown ups got back into government.

The honeymoon will not last for long but it is such a pleasant change no longer hearing endless snark, fear mongering and three word slogans.

Still trying to find the appropriate 3 word slogan to carve on the Mad Monk's political tombstone. I think it would be fun to invite his ghost to the serpent's Halloween party along with his pet rottweiler - Eric Abetz - the Terror from Tasmania.

Actually the pair of them would make great characters for November's adventures as card carrying members of a crazy Cthulhu worshipping nihilistic death cult.

But it's time to slink off into the darkness. Got to be out and about early tomorrow for the Tuesday day job.
izmeina: a wicked witch on her broomstick by moonlight (wicked witch)
It's October and spring is well and truly in the air. Aside from the return of the sizzling stinking hot weather which usually arrives some time in late November, there's plenty of things to look forward to this time of year.

The flowers are blooming like crazy and the pecan trees have finally come out with their first leaves. All those nuts I planted several months ago have also come to life.
Even the acorns gathered from the serpentine spiritual home in Eden Vale have survived several summers and are now on their second sets of new leaves.

This was also the time of looking forward to visiting the Festival of Country Gardens down south. That had been a ritual for a good 12 years but has been off the agenda since 2013.
Slinking in the gardens and the squiggling frenzy that is Nanowrimo have been associated in the serpentine mind for a long time. There will be special cause for nostalgia this November since the days and dates exactly match 2009 when I signed up for the insane venture for the first time.

This year there's so many workshops and events in assorted libraries that I will be too busy to indulge in too much reminiscing about 'the good old days' but I have dusted off the old Dark Grimoire tarot deck in memory of 2009.

Then there's also Halloween to look forward to. It's sort of silly being in the middle of spring but nowhere near as ridiculous as Christmas where the media and retailers insist that we are in the middle of winter.
Instead of carving creepy pumpkin lanterns, will be planting giant pumpkin seeds and looking around to see who has got the spookiest party and looking to find the creepiest adornments for the Lair.
The Mexican Day of the Dead festival has become a big thing here in the last few years.

But one thing above all has marked the real return of spring, boom and bloom in this wide brown land. Monday 14th September was the day the Mad Monk got dumped and the grown ups got back into government.

The honeymoon will not last for long but it is such a pleasant change no longer hearing endless snark, fear mongering and three word slogans.

Still trying to find the appropriate 3 word slogan to carve on the Mad Monk's political tombstone. I think it would be fun to invite his ghost to the serpent's Halloween party along with his pet rottweiler - Eric Abetz - the Terror from Tasmania.

Actually the pair of them would make great characters for November's adventures as card carrying members of a crazy Cthulhu worshipping nihilistic death cult.

But it's time to slink off into the darkness. Got to be out and about early tomorrow for the Tuesday day job.
izmeina: (Default)
Izzie is an expert in the dark art of delayed gratification. The Number of the Serpent over in Nanoland is 49,999

Saving that last single solitary one word for tomorrow evening's Write Night. It is so weird when the strange Cyberian and mundane Muggle worlds collide. Tomorrow will be one such day.

Unlike most other years this November's novel in progress ended up more like a collection of jigsaw pieces than a proper story with a beginning, a middle and an end. All those tweeks will have to wait for December. Once again just before the finish line a whole bunch of ideas for next year's story started presenting themselves and attempting to distract me from the mission at hand.

The other serpent who lurks in the Coursera classrooms also has a new number. It is 61.6
The passing grade for the last Python programming class was 70% so well and truly missed it. Hardly surprising since I chickened out of the last three mini projects each worth 8% of the total mark.
But I will be back. Once November is ended there's a big fat Coursera catch up to do including a course on Terrorism and Counter-Terrorism and a rerun of the excellent "Learning how to learn"

Did very well the first time around but due to other distractions did not spend half as much time on the discussion forums as I would have liked. Decided that from now on it would be a good idea to keep other temptations to a minimum when doing their courses as unlike nearly all the others, Coursera has by far the most user friendly forums. That is usually where all the juiciest stuff can be found.

Also managed to snaffle a free copy of John Grisham's "The Firm" so looking forward to another juicy saga in my favourite genre - Deals with the Devil. I guess it is not really an official genre but it should be. Along with doomy gloomy Dystopias, such tales are temptation beyond endurance.
izmeina: spooky shadowy squid (scary squid)
Izzie is an expert in the dark art of delayed gratification. The Number of the Serpent over in Nanoland is 49,999

Saving that last single solitary one word for tomorrow evening's Write Night. It is so weird when the strange Cyberian and mundane Muggle worlds collide. Tomorrow will be one such day.

Unlike most other years this November's novel in progress ended up more like a collection of jigsaw pieces than a proper story with a beginning, a middle and an end. All those tweeks will have to wait for December. Once again just before the finish line a whole bunch of ideas for next year's story started presenting themselves and attempting to distract me from the mission at hand.

The other serpent who lurks in the Coursera classrooms also has a new number. It is 61.6
The passing grade for the last Python programming class was 70% so well and truly missed it. Hardly surprising since I chickened out of the last three mini projects each worth 8% of the total mark.
But I will be back. Once November is ended there's a big fat Coursera catch up to do including a course on Terrorism and Counter-Terrorism and a rerun of the excellent "Learning how to learn"

Did very well the first time around but due to other distractions did not spend half as much time on the discussion forums as I would have liked. Decided that from now on it would be a good idea to keep other temptations to a minimum when doing their courses as unlike nearly all the others, Coursera has by far the most user friendly forums. That is usually where all the juiciest stuff can be found.

Also managed to snaffle a free copy of John Grisham's "The Firm" so looking forward to another juicy saga in my favourite genre - Deals with the Devil. I guess it is not really an official genre but it should be. Along with doomy gloomy Dystopias, such tales are temptation beyond endurance.
izmeina: (Default)
The serpent is lurking a lot less lately due to the distraction of the annual ritual that is National - these days more like International Novel Writing Month.

It’s not like I am ever actually going to DO anything with the 50,000 plus words. Didn’t last year or the year before or the one before that etc etc so it seems most unlikely that things will be different this time. But in the end it doesn’t really matter.

A big fat stash of words )
izmeina: creepy spooky old house infested with crawling critters (spooky)
The serpent is lurking a lot less lately due to the distraction of the annual ritual that is National - these days more like International Novel Writing Month.

It’s not like I am ever actually going to DO anything with the 50,000 plus words. Didn’t last year or the year before or the one before that etc etc so it seems most unlikely that things will be different this time. But in the end it doesn’t really matter.

A big fat stash of words )
izmeina: (Default)
It is said that the depressed are obsessed with the past while the more anxious sorts fear the future. So maybe it is a good sign that a certain serpent has been so busy with mundane matters of the present that she has not even observed a whole bunch of significant anniversaries.
An ancient serpent reminisces )
izmeina: Strange Spiral Clock (Time Turner)
It is said that the depressed are obsessed with the past while the more anxious sorts fear the future. So maybe it is a good sign that a certain serpent has been so busy with mundane matters of the present that she has not even observed a whole bunch of significant anniversaries.
An ancient serpent reminisces )

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izmeina

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