Category Archives: Opine

Face the Darkness, but Enjoy the Light

It is often said that a man must face his greater darkness. If that is the case, then a society to must on occasion face the darker parts of its nature. Unfortunately while confronting that darkness, it’s easy to lose sight of the light. We have seen horror this week in Charleston, and we’ve once again been driven to ask why this is happening in our world. While this sociological introspection is needed, it is important to not lose ourselves down that path.

The Gunman with nine people’s blood on his hands has been caught, and he will be held accountable for his crimes. Depressingly enough he seems not proud, but he doesn’t regret what he did. He wanted to start a Second Civil War, a Race War. Yet, he has not succeeded. Sure, there will be those on the fringes of all sides using this to push one agenda or another. But I would rather focus on what I’m seeing all around us.

We’re seeing not an onslaught of violence against others but a show of support for the innocent fallen. Not a loud public demand for others blood, but words of forgiveness and prayer by those most hurt. It is this we should look at, and this we should embrace. Over the last six months we’ve seen brutal Violence and Rioting break out in Major cities, yet I see now building being burned in Charleston tonight. Instead, from my home in Texas, I see people gathered in Prayer. I see people discussing why things are so bad, and frankly, I don’t think it really is. We SEE bad, yet we must also accept the good.

Our co-workers who we stand next to day in and day out and never even think about anything other than how they are doing. Our friends and neighbors who have always shared our streets with us in the cities, suburbs, towns. We really don’t treat people poorly. Look to the people around you, and ask not what makes you different, but what has bound you together over the weeks.

For those who have died, they have passed on into the next world, where the Color of their skin, no longer truly matters. For those of us left behind we look to try and heal our communities, while trying to make sure things like this don’t happen. But we aren’t alone, or as divided as one would want to believe. We are all together, driven by common purpose.

Ask yourself when was the last time you judged a person by the color of their skin instead of the strength of their character, it doesn’t matter what race you are. Ask yourself that question. I’ll bet most of the time the answer is you don’t really.

May God help heal those who suffered the most, and protect those now in his hands. And for the rest of us, let us stand together and live as friends, and not be divided as those who commit these acts would want us to be.

Funding Ideas and Projects

So I’m trying to get a better job at work. It’s still part-time but it be high up the food chain. I think it would at least.

Problem is that it will take away from my projects I want to work on, but find myself exhausted at the end of the day when it comes down to it. I’ve been trying to get folk to contribute out of the goodness of their heart, or at least let themselves be hit with some ad banners. Neither seems to have really worked. Putting up all the pages I do is a lot of work and I can’t dedicate myself to them at the expense of living, that’s just how it is. Also, I WANT to do more than just what I’m doing on the pages, but can’t due to obligations to the Gods of food and shelter. I have an idea as it relates to new content and I’m going to try and ask some folk for help short term on that.

One thing that Strike Fiss has recommended has been getting me a Patreon.com account. It would basically be an account where you, my readers, pay me a small stipend per month so I can dedicate more time to my projects and my writing. Or working the Archive on Fanbards, or creating worlds to play in on Darkscribes. Or… paying for your damned lemon factory on Lemontastica. I have some thoughts on the subject, and I’m not sure it will all work out, but I have this idea as it relates to funding all these projects.

Patreon will be where I try and get monthly funding for the general work. Things like server money, food, housing, stuff I need in order to dedicate myself to the work I want to be doing more than the work I actually am doing. I know, you probably think I’m being selfish, but hey, man’s got to eat.

I have several project ideas though that I will probably start running Kickstarter and GoFundMe campaigns for in order to fund them. I have a few ideas for things I want to do for all who read, and some projects I want to do around the local Granbury, TX area.

Why Granbury, TX. And not somewhere else? Because this is where I live.

I’m open to thoughts on this both here and on all the other linked to sites I have up. If I’m making a mistake, or if it’s just not worth it. Let me know.

Sunshine, Texas

So I’m driving to work and I get this thought. What if I tried to design a small town or community in North East Texas around the idea of sustainable easy to live with ideas? After all, it’s one thing to say we have to change things due to global climate change. It is a far far different thing to try and achieve something based around that thought. So here is my idea, and tell me what you think. Be honest, comments open to everyone.

First is that an artificial Lake would have to be built to supply the community, both with water and potential for tourist income. That’s something that has to be taken into account, income from visiting folk who might enjoy the town but live in a place like Ft. Worth or Dallas. The water would have to be provided by desalinization of water from the Gulf at first. I’d rather add fresh water to the system then drain anything up or down one of the rivers in the area. Every residence and business facility would have proportional underground rain water harvesting tanks for things such as landscaping, some gardening for food, and things of that nature. It should help the water needs for the families that live in the community.

In order to aid the water needs there would be nice parks, each one with a pond/water catchment on it that is connected to the rest of the water system of the community. That way we can help maintain the community’s water situation and be a bit more drought resistant. The more water the better.

Every house will have solar panels on them. With the new home and business batteries being sold by Tesla there is no reason NOT to have at least one or two 10kWh battery in each house and business throughout this community. The energy would be majority Solar and wind, with some Hydro-electric from the lake to help up and down stream if there is a connection to the Texas River system. I’d rather do that in order to be part of the system, but that’s me.

There would also be a place for Tiny Homes, small one or two person trailers and houses. The tiny house mentality would be integral to the community, reducing the amount of space per home used, while maintaining and adding trees and wooded areas throughout the community.

And in the center of town and old school designed square, with business and local government available for all areas.

This is just a simple idea, and one open for debate and improvement on. If you think this is a good idea, you could support it with idea clean up, or with ideas on how to actually make it happen. Let me know your opinions.

Time for a bit of a Rant

So, I’ve been reading politics again. Never a good thing. Frankly I’ve spent a large amount of time trying to keep out of the fray. I could go on about this and that, condemn all things I disagree with, fire and brimstone and maybe make a ton of cash doing it. I’m not going to though, that’s not who I want to be. That’s not what I want to write. But there are time when I read some things so blatantly stupid I need to speak up. And really there aren’t enough people speaking up against the absolute stupidity of people who call themselves “Social Justice Warriors” who are in fact censoring cowards. Delicate Snowflake? More like idiot who will end up incapable of existing in the real world.

Here’s the article that has me on my soapbox this morning.

If you haven’t guessed, I am firmly on the side of the Wall Street Journal on this one.

When I was a kid it was clear, if you are offended by something you either suck it up or you say something. You don’t get protected from content that offends you, you don’t get to block out ideas that go against your beliefs. You take them in, and if you agree or disagree with them you either say something, or suck it up and deal. It’s one of the reasons blogging became what it is. The public now had a way to speak out without the filters of the media, without the middle man. We could say what we wanted, when we wanted, and as intellectually or as crudely as we wanted. And it was perfectly legal, as the First Amendment always protected that.

Now we have people who need trigger warnings, hash tag this, disclaimer that. You shouldn’t say bad things about people, and if they try and kill you well it’s your fault for not being sensitive to their culture.

WE NEVER SUPPORTED THAT!

The First Amendment at the time was one of the first things that ever codified in law that the Government didn’t have the right to forcefully convert you to the State Religion, that you couldn’t be locked up for saying something a politician didn’t like. We said I had the right to print what I wanted even if it was anti-government, and that I could spout my beliefs from the highest available stage in public. We have never EVER been a country to give in on these ideals. Yet this newest generation seems not just willing, but eager to strip us of this founding believe because their virgin ears can’t handle it (if any part of them can be called virgin these days.)

I believe in real Freedom of Speech, of Expression, of Belief. That doesn’t mean I’m protected from anything that goes against it.

If you can’t handle being exposed to opposing ideas, then the problem isn’t me, or the people who you disagree with. The problem is you. If you feel you have the right to censor or in some other way be protected from contrary ideas than you are going to have a hard time in the real world.

Time to suck it up and deal.

Lost ideas

One of the things I’ve found lately is that I have a ton of crap in my personal files. They take up a 500 GB external HDD and frankly I need to clean up. So I’m in the process of doing that and uploading the new file layout into OneDrive. I’m in the process of joining the rest of the majority of the world with Windows.

I still like Linux, I’m just tired of being on the outside of the world and refuse to pay for anything Apple.

So I’ve got a TON of story ideas I never finished or need fleshing out sitting in my personal files. I need to work it all through though, slowly recreating my archives and such. It’s difficult and a pain in the ass.

So I’ve got a large amount of ideas in here that once done get slotted into Spacial Anomalies. Then I have to finish up more ideas for Terran Confederation and Europa for Darkscribes. It’s a lot of work. Not to mention the archives for Fanbards needing more work.

But I keep working an updating as I can, need to work on fanfics as well and post them all over the place.

We’ll see how much work I can get done.

Free Commerce Activate!

Well, I’ve been trying to get some money together, and I’ve had ads runing on almost all of my pages. Well now I have this, an Amazon.com aStore for Dhampir Dreams. I’m going to add content to it, books that I’ve enjoyed and the like as I go along, with some catagories. This store I’m keeping strictly literature, and if you find you like one of my recommendations, then please purchase it from the store here. I get a small percentage of each sale.

I’ll add more over time, but that is what I’m trying to do so, yea. I’ll be adding subject specific stores to the groups and such of Fanbards.net here as well over time. Hopefully they will build me up some capital over time.

NASA MAY have created FTL Flight.

Yesterday I caught a link to an article summarizing a forum discussion on NASASpaceFlight.com that indicates that NASA may have accidentally created a warp drive. For those of you who HAVEN’T ever seen Star Trek or anything like that, a Warp Drive in Fiction is a method of Faster than Light travel where an engine generates a field around a star ship. This field allows the ship to move faster than light without time dilation effect, getting around General Relativity.

This brings the possibility of Space Flight to others stars, not just planets within our own star system to potentially being within our lifetimes if it can be replicated and scaled. We need to work on the engineering and science, but it’s possible.

I had an interesting discussion on Facebook about this in the Star Trek group and it brings to light a wonderful idea of new possibilities. Lets get to building the U.S.S. Enterprise.

Working on the Weekends

So I’m sitting here waiting to start my shift at work on a Saturday morning thinking about the world. We all have a thought that someday we will “Make it Big.” Of course Big being subjective, our dreams are always a little different from the next person but revolve around a central theme. We’ll be happy, healthy, and have a home with people we care about. It of course changes up and down the spectrum but that is the basics.

So what do I want for my “Big?” That is a question to which the answer has changed over the years. Before it was to have a good career and live out my life happily. Now it’s still sort of that, but the details are different. I want a home but I want it somewhere simple, I want a relationship but I don’t know where to go or some such.

I’m mostly working on ideas but never going further then plotting out events and scenes in my mind, I’m also wondering what at the age of 36 I could possibly do that would be of interest. I have to admit, I feel as if my life has stalled at times. Also, when you think of it you see the world, and you see people ten years or more younger then you already retiring, it can get depressing.

So, what does one do then?

One idea is to stay the course, stick it out and try to figure out how to get promoted at your current job and just work slowly there. Lot’s of famous people are in their early to mid-forties and just really getting started. Time isn’t THAT fleeting… at least I hope it isn’t.

The other is to try and pull a J.K. Rowling and try and come up with “The Great American Novel.” This is mostly what I’m trying to do, or at least provide some interesting thoughts folk to read.  I know I’m not exactly a very broad based person, but I do hope I have SOME kind of following.

But first and foremost one must define themselves really, if only who they WANT to be in their heads. The Legend of their own mind. What is our self-image, that person we see ourselves as? Is it some clerk somewhere always working and never getting any further in their lives? Or is it some action hero from the 1980’s? Once one has who they are in their minds, they can start working towards changing that, or enhancing that image into what they are towards everyone else.

So we go from there and start trying to push towards that sort of life. You can have a great life without ending up a famous person. Probably more enjoyable in general that way if you ask me.  We figure out how we want to be remembered, either by those around us or the world at large, or if it’s even worth it. Some of us are very forgettable, myself included in that at times.

But at the end of the day, forgettable or unforgivable, we can define how we want to exist. I would be happy with the stereotypical existence from the 1950’s, at least as it was defined as being a family, a house, and a stable livelihood. Even if the details have changed, the basics haven’t.

One day, one day.

Digital Presence – How we put ourselves out there!

I’ve been thinking about site building for a while now. Site building isn’t like development to me, in that development you are really just working with PHP code, creating modules, sites, scripts, and things of that nature. You are going from the ground up in code to a finished product. Then you have building, which to me at least implies you are mostly if not exclusively finding modules and using scripts someone else maintains. This isn’t about the benefits or drawbacks of either, just defining our terms for this discussion.

When the internet first started becoming a thing for the general public we had sites like geocities. You could go and build a simple html website there for free, and not really have any issues. It was ok. I had a simple page there with gifs and the like. I used Mozilla Composer to build it first. Then I started learning some simple html code. Things have sort of spiraled out of control since and now I have to basically use a project to do anything. That is frankly not too big an issue as an open project allows for updating to code to be handled more easily if others are doing the backend work for you. I get to focus on the content and presentation.

But that’s really interesting in a way. We’ve seen it become much easier over time to create your own space on the internet. You can do something simple like just use a Facebook profile as your personal page, or create a group, send out short tweets with links to Youtube videos. You can even just get easy to setup blogs from wordpress.org. Structurally at least creating a personal presence on the web has become extremely simple.

So while I could probably save cash I still do things with an eye towards this idea. I like not focusing on the code and focusing more on the layout and the content. It’s what I do mostly so the question becomes what is best for what you are trying to do?

For an archive like Fanbards.net you can either just do a straight archive using something like eFiction.org’s archive software. You can use Drupal as well to construct things the way you want. I’m hopefully done with structure for a while until Drupal 8 comes out. Or you can create a WordPress Blog, generate pages and things of that nature to build things up slowly. It works, and works greate for a personal setup.

But that’s structure, in the end it’s what you put out there that defines your precense. I run five web addresses. Four of which are all part of the same website. It’s basically a separation of interests. I’m not sure if I will eventually be able to make anything of all these interests but I try. And that is something a lot of people do. Try to provide an interesting precense on the web. We have Video Blogs, and Kindle Books, and all sort of things that make it easier for the common person to do what needed an entire company of people to do only twenty years ago. And it’s only going to get easier.

I think over time we will see more of a simplification and consolidation of things. Maybe having more interlinks between profiles on different sites, posting things we post on fictionpress.net to our Facebook Pages, things of that nature.

I like the idea, but we’ll see over time.

 

Possibilities

I’m considering starting up a bit of a video blog. I know, I barely get posts out in text, how could I possibly handle a video blogging schedule. Well that would be some of it. I’d try to come up with a new Vlog every week and post it on Fridays or sometime then. I’m not against the idea, but I’m not sure if it will turn out well. I’ve got some ideas. We’ll see how it goes.

I’m rewatching some of my old school fun stuff to get ideas and such to restart my stories that have laid dormant. I want to work on more and create new worlds for my story worlds. It’s difficult to get started again though.

We’ll have to see one way or the other.