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Updates of All Kinds

February 17, 2010

I regret to inform my dear reading public that there was not, in fact, any Wii-playing over the weekend.  There was instead an overabundance of homework-doing and anxiety-having (on account of the homework, largely).  The cabinet doors did get finished, both the painting and the mounting, but the Wii had to wait.

Beyond that, my current short-story is in the hands of one reader – other than my wife.  I’m still interested in finding one or two other readers who might be so inclined as to provide some thoughts and feedback on the story (and who will not be put off by the story being a fantasy story).  My goal, in pursuing feedback, is in learning what are the critical weaknesses of the story in its current form (operating under the assumption that I am too inexperienced a writer to discern those myself, and that they in fact exist). 

My wife discovered one perhaps critical flaw: she got a little confused about just what was going on in the climax of the story.  That suggests I was not as perfectly clear in the exposition at that point.  Up until the moment of the climax I tried to obfuscate and subtly mislead, while providing sufficient clues as to what was really going on.  Once everything hits the fan, though, I wanted things to be clear to the reader even as they became increasingly unclear to the narrator (the story is told in first person perspective, so that makes it a bit more challenging, I guess).  I added probably a couple dozen lines of exposition to try and make things more explicitly clear, but I’m well aware that I may not have succeeded yet, in that regard.

I put out a general call on Facebook to find folks who might be amenable to giving my story a read.  My reasoning was that most of my “friends” on Facebook are friends in real life.  But the thing about facebook is: once you broadcast your message, there’s no realistic likelihood that anyone will see it.  What Facebook chooses to show on your newsfeed seems to be determined algorithmically, but it’s not easy to figure out how that algorithm works.  From a user’s perspective, it’s pretty random and scattershot.  And you have to have a certain level of masochism to switch away from the “newsfeed” to troll all the recent wall posts, etc. of all your friends.  I don’t have time for that level of masochism, and most FB users don’t seem to either.  So my general call was probably easily burried, and those who did see it were mostly not the ones most amenable to answering it, I suspect.

On a tangential topic, I’ve added a Twitter feed for my blog, so that updates will now be posted there, as well.  You can follow me at @swatkinsjr.  For the time being, the only thing that will appear on my twitter feed will be posts about this blog – twitter is blocked from work, but these tweets will be managed from a back-end.  If I ever live in a future where I have a job in which services like Twitter are not blocked… who knows.  In general, I consider my daily life insufficiently compelling to warrant hourly updates, as it were.  But if I have a pithy thought, during the day, that might be worth sharing.  For now, however, that shall not be.

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