Let's get awkward…

There is something that I haven’t voiced on this blog. Or, at least not in a long time. My friend’s significant other gave birth to a beautiful set of twins on my birthday. What year? The same birthday that they pulled the life support from me and I was expected to die (2013). Needless to say, I never forget how old they are.

I don’t really have much of a blog post to put here, except that I was thinking about it earlier and I felt that I had to share it. Fuck knows my wife is probably sick of me telling her over and over again, so now YOU poor people get to deal with this bit of information.

I just think it a bit of fun trivia. It doesn’t explain reincarnation or the like because I didn’t die. You would think that there would be horrible memories tied to their existence, but quite the opposite. I am happy to share a birthday with them, and extremely proud to have them in my circle. I think my friend is a fantastic father. I’d be remised for not adding that I never pictured him as a father, but that’s a story for another day.

So, that’s your bit of shinfo for the day.

OH! Air cushions are still the worst. I’m sitting here in INCREDIBLE pain and discomfort. I have used so many patches and so much duct tape fixing small holes that keep appearing, but somehow I always miss one or five.

I cannot comment on all air cushions, but this one is split into four quadrants. It makes it easy to estimate where holes are, because just that area is affected. HOWEVER! If it isn’t totally visible, life is lived constantly trying to keep up with inflating and shifting air around the structure. Thank fuck I’m patient and not one to complain offline.

Two more pieces of information shat don’t matter! I hit 150 followers the other day! I’m sure that most of them are advertising and hopes for a follow-for-follow, but I still did it!

And, finally, a reminder that I have a book available! You can buy it here, it is on Amazon, but I’m not going to make that post easy because they are weird about listing that shit. Also, it’s a huge re-write of You’re Not Dead, plus all the anewsinPublishing stuff I had written up to the point of publication! New, sexy, black cover on physical versions. Significantly longer, but not too long to be daunting. GRAH I love it so. I’m just really bad at advertising, so if you wouldn’t mind telling anyone who would be interested about it, that would be nifty!

valentine's day

I love my wife, very much. It doesn’t change that I hate this day with a passion. I think it’s shallow, and I resent the idea that we have a day to remind us to express the love for another. So, I give you a collection of things that are true on ever level to put into cards or whatever. I got my wife flowers.

We all die alone.
but I want to pretend that I die with you.

Let’s attach ourselves legally and monetarily
because that is what society says that you’re supposed to do.

For richer or poorer, in sickness and in health
being saddled with incredible debts and thinking we could ever own anything.

Put up with my artistic expressions
or else I’ll blame you for my stagnation.

I love you today…
…and will tomorrow, and tomorrow, and tomorrow…
…even when I hate you.

I love how
I feel like I have to buy you stuff when I cannot afford it.

Remember when we were younger?
Our clothing does.

I’ll let you pick half the playlist…
…and I won’t complain that much.

I won’t think of other people sexually.
I promise.

Hello, friends!

I know that I have griped on this topic before, but I am looking for a literary agent!

I do have another book in the works right now, it probably will not be done until next year, but I want to have You’re Not Dead attached to a traditional publisher.

It is segmented: half the book are short stories which have no baring on the main narrative. There is a common theme, however, and the flow (though I am biased) is great.

Someone recently asked me to define the general theme of this book. I replied with “Black Comedy” because I think that it can be hilarious. I am well aware that I might be alone in that. I also find a lot of Chuck Palahniuk to be funny as Hell.

Anyway, I am very happy with the rate at which the book is selling. Yes, it does contain the first release, but there is SO much more! I think the depressing factoids that I book end each chapter are a good time. I realize that this book can be a bit too bleak for some, but I also think that can be part of the appeal for others. It is not very often that you get a piece of media that expresses such dissatisfaction with a large host of society.

Back to my initial point: I am looking for a literary agent. I am certain that, with the correct team on my side, I can be taken more seriously in this world.

Wheelchair Update

This is going to be interesting.

NEW DISCOVERY! Sarcasm doesn’t write well.

This is probably only interesting to a portion of people who actually keep up with this blog. Even with that demographic in mind: my writing on this topic will only interest a few.

Since I got my own wheelchair six years ago, I have had a piece to my chair that I have both loved and hated. It was supposed to be support for my knees, and was issued to me when my mobility was less.

The medical purpose for it is to keep my legs at a comfortable angle. Because I have an air cushion that does not work right, it had a tendency to sit higher than what the rest of the seat would. It would then cut off blood flow to my feet and was incredibly uncomfortable. The main reason I used it was to hold my cell phone somewhere other than a pocket. It was good for that.

A while ago, an OT commented on how this piece of kit was too far forward. She informed me that it I couldn’t move it back, just remove it all together. I was hesitant: I was under the initial impression that it was to keep the cushion raised and supported.

I removed the plastic sheet last night. It turns out that it was completely unnecessary. Now, my chair is smaller than ever before! I say that because it is both a blessing and a curse.

The two inches that it gave me, it turns out, changed where my centre of gravity was while doing general things. Even the small wheelies I would perform to get over small objects feel, though the wording is a bit strong, dangerous. Though I just removed maybe one percent of the volume of my chair, is has changed the feeling dramatically.

I want to say that I hate the change, but that would not be entirely true. There are parts that feel almost threatening, but I am certain that, with time, I will be able to get used to it. I still have my air cushion for now, though I hope to be getting a solid seat soon.

It’s funny: the woman that I got the seating from described the air cushion as a “Roles Royce of wheelchair seating.” Though I have no reason to disagree with her, this is my 3rd cushion and even it is fucking destroyed. So, I submit this query. Is it worth spending more money to get something that could be great for a little bit, or dropping less money for something that might just be okay for a longer time?

FIRST WORLD PROBLEMS, AM I RIGHT?

Classic Album Reviews :: Squarepusher — Big Loada

I was initially going to wait a little before I wrote this up, but I could not stop myself. I fucking LOVE this album, and it is a perfect representation of what you can do with digital music.

Few albums have the balls to start on such a frenetic pulse as this one. Come On My Selector is not only a fantastic single, but is such a kick to the face. I cannot even figure out a place to start talking and dissecting in regards to the composition of this song. I will remind you that Tom Jenkinson plays the bass lines himself.

Now, why talk about an album that I have a hard time dissecting when Hello Everything, or even Ufabalum, are much easier to compare to other more commercially accepted things? Because this album defies being appreciated and spoken about. This is my challenge, and I am so very happy and excited to try. I say that, but I am probably just going to talk and talk about how broken everything is then tell you to listen to it.

Like I mentioned, track one is a slap in the face with chaos. Track two reminds me of old racing games on the Super Nintendo mixed with the sounds your car would actually exhibit if you tried to go those speeds. Track three seems like it may be more conventional, then it descends into the depths of madness.

And, might I just remind you that almost all of the bass lines are performed on an actual bass? The time signatures on some tracks change with the bars. Less than Hello Everything, this album is the jazz of electronica. To realize that it is all being composed by one human is mind blowing. To accept that he performs the bass lines himself on a bass is even less fair.

I am going to place the music video below for Come On My Selector. If you think that song is at all interesting, I implore you to at least listen to other songs from both Big Loada and Hello Everything. In particular Bubble Life is a not-fair example of what he can do on bass. ALSDKFNQWOEIFS I love these albums.

Classic Album Review :: Aphex Twin – Richard D. James Album

Something I don’t normally express is my strange obsession with off-beat electronica. I put a vote up on FaceBook between Aphex Twin and Sparepusher, and only got one reply. I would be more upset by that, but Squarepusher seems to be a bit more obscure in the circles I run in. To bad, too: there is something to be said about a man who plays all the bass lines live. Maybe I will do Big Loada as my next music article.

Anyway! This album truly changed what I saw the landscape of music to be. It somehow contains both the most peaceful and serine, and well as the more wrong and distorted, collection of sounds you will find in music. The album starts with a track that displays more of the former. It’s pretty, relaxed (kind of), and normal. However, starting with the next track, things change. It gets darker. More willing to be strange.

Strange really is the best way of describing the tone of majority of the songs. It’s far from bad, but not normal. Songs like Milkman straddle the line of being acceptable and inappropriate, and even the most normal songs are just kind of off. It is very hard to describe. Maybe like that dream that you cannot call bad, but never want to have again. Nothing inherently wrong, but nothing you would ever describe to your parents.

What I find interesting are songs like To Cure a Weakling Child where they start pretty, cute almost, then have this bridge where things just go horribly wrong and distorted. The next track (Goon Grumpas) goes in a different direction again. It sounds like something you would expect to hear as a town in shown to be perfect in a movie or video game. It never breaks the feeling of bliss, but that comfort is dropped by the first note of the next track (Yellow Calix). I am not saying that it’s a complete departure that goes off the rails in ever possible direction, but it changes mood completely, and Aphex Twin plays with the percussion line heavily.

This is my favourite album by him. The only one that compares and Drukqs released 4 years later. I feel comfortable comparing him to The Dillinger Escape Plan, especially after they covered one of his songs years ago. I cannot recommend this album to someone who doesn’t already know of this movement in music, but I feel comfortable saying that anyone who looks for something more in their music would enjoy this heavily.

As always, I do apologize for the abundance of ads that have come up in the examples. I try, really hard, to give you ad free enjoyment. It rarely works out. HERE’S A VIDEO OF THE ALBUM!

I guess I should do some shameless self-promotion for my book here.

Personal Blog

I haven’t written one of these in a while. I just don’t think that I’m particularly interesting, and I have a hard time thinking that anyone would have any interest in anything that I am up to. So, I guess that’s the warning!

I wrote a new book! Not that I haven’t been riding that train for weeks now…

It’s been re-released under You’re Not Dead, but I fixed the grammar and spelling huge, plus I filled it out with fictional bits. It now sits just over 200 pages for the physical copy. Amazon has been… awkward… with their restocking of it, but the store over on Friessen Press works beautifully! They print on demand, as well. That ensures that you will get the right version! I am still looking for a publishing agent, and that journey is hard and depressing. Yet, this is the path I chose, kind of. I only say “kind of” because, if you have listened to my PodCast I did on Taker Wide in the past, you know that art is less of a choice and more of necessity.

I’m pretty sure that I have mentioned this part before, but my wife and I moved back in with my parents last year. It’s going well! I will say that I haven’t seen many friends since we moved back here, but that isn’t a huge change since Burlington.

If you aren’t awkward with south-western Ontario, that’s less than an hour away. Unfortunately, it is a separate health system, so it’s a bitch to get everything reset as far as doctors go. We’re slowly figuring that out. In fact, today I have a place that I’m going to! Right on time, as well!

I have written the next ansP recently. The last one underperformed, but that is, in part, due to me not realizing what day is was being released. If you haven’t read it, go do so (please). If you have read it, what do you think of it? It was fun to write, but I don’t intend to do the same style anytime soon. If there is an interest, though, I will write another one.

We don’t have wheels any longer. We got rid of our car recently, because upkeep was too expensive. On that note, the Patreon is very close to $100, and I find that stupid exciting. It would make it possible to go to events and maybe do meet-ups in the future!

You’re Terrible {ANEWSIN VOL.12 — Jason Garden}

\\A conversation between two writers named Jerome and Kelsey. They are sitting in a mall food court with only soft drinks in front of them. \\

Jerome
Hey. Kelsey. Did you read over the rough copy of that story I sent over a few weeks ago?

Kelsey
Yeah. I did.

Jerome
Verdict?

Kelsey
It’s fuckin’ terrible.

Jerome
What’s wrong with it?

Kelsey
You try to write dialog and maybe shouldn’t. People don’t talk that way.

Jerome
What do you mean?

Kelsey
It’s stilted. Awkward. Like, consider these line:

A man steps forward. “You know that this is how we make our living. We need any sort of identification to prove we killed the right group. Now, hurry your smoke, Skylar. We gotta go.”

“Fuck you, Steve.” Skylar proclaims under her breath.

Does something feel, off, about that exchange?

Jerome
Yep.

Kelsey
What do you mean “Yep”? Do you do it on purpose?

Jerome
Depends on the situation I’m writing. Most people—

Kelsey
It should always be fluid. Otherwise it’s not natural.

Jerome
When do you ever—

Kelsey
What I find helpful is actually have a person read out loud with you to bounce the conversation back and forth.

Jerome
Okay, but that—

Kelsey
Otherwise, you run the risk of things sounding manufactured, or worse: meandering.

Jerome
So, do you think that I should always do that?

Kelsey
Why not?

Jerome
I sometimes don’t have someone to “run lines” with me. I try to read things out loud, but I don’t—

Kelsey
…don’t what? Know where to put inflection?

Jerome
—I was going to say that I don’t know how to cut myself off. I can’t seem to create the awkward that is actual conversation.

Kelsey
Then don’t cut yourself off.

Jerome
Do you realize how hard it is to create a natural conversation without cutoff’s and awkward pausing?

Kelsey
What?

Jerome
It’s very rare to have a conversation flow in real life where no one stammers or cuts someone off.

Kelsey
We’re doing just fine.

Jerome
You cut me off at least twice so far in this friendly banter that we’re having now.

Kelsey
You call this friendly banter?

Jerome
What?

Kelsey
I fucking hate your writing. It’s depressing. It’s morose. The ending is always left in space. Your language is too complicated for some.

Jerome
So, you’re saying that I should just stop?

Kelsey
NO! I’m saying that you should just get better. You seem to have written yourself into a corner where you don’t seem to grow or change. 

Your best work was a few stories ago, and you are just stagnating. Your last piece was, in your own words, similar to what you would have written in high school. And your best work is not even that good.

Jerome
So, what you’re saying is: you do like my early work?

Kelsey
No. I’m saying that you seem to think you’re okay at this. Why keep beating your head against the wall?

Jerome
… because I have to?

Kelsey
Have to? Or want to?

Jerome
Both.

Kelsey
How can it be both?

Jerome
Simple. I write for me, and the ten or so people that think my writing is worth their time.

Kelsey
Okay, but how—

Jerome
I write because I can’t draw, I can’t play drums how I used to, I can’t sing… so what other artistic thing am I doing to do?

Kelsey
So, you’re admitting that you just do this as a kind of masturbation?

Jerome
No, you pretentious prick!

Kelsey
Then why do you do this?

Jerome
Because, unlike what you say, I don’t think I suck. I have points on society that I want, or need, to make. I have opinions that I want to share. I want to challenge the ideas of spirituality, religion, and life. 

I don’t want to lay my opinions bare, because I have nothing more grandiose than ideas. Those ideas, however, do make some decent short stories.

Kelsey
So, why make them public?

Jerome
What do you mean?

Kelsey
If you are doing it for you, why infest the world with your drivel?

Jerome
Why not?

Kelsey
Because you’re fucking terrible.

//long, awkward pause

Kelsey
You read my latest book, right?

Jerome
I understand it’s merit, but it’s not my cup-o-tea.

Kelsey
What do you mean? It’s got love, death, suspense, death…

Jerome
Yeah. But not my kind of thing.

Kelsey
What do you mean?

Jerome
I’m not going to dunk on it. Just leave it at “it’s not my cup-o-tea”.

Kelsey
There’s ‘dunking’ angles?

Jerome
Drop it—

Kelsey
I didn’t think there were dunking angles…?

Jerome
KELSEY (awkward pause)

Jerome
Thank you. Can we get off the topic now? What are you working on next?

Kelsey
I’m working on a young-adult novel about a boy and a girl in high school

Jerome (under breath)
original.

Kelsey
What was that?

Jerome
Nothing. Don’t worry about—

Kelsey
—it? You just want me to drop this line of inquiry and pretend you didn’t say something?

Jerome
Why are you pushing this? I want to just drop the conversation and move on.

Kelsey
TELL ME

Jerome
No.

Kelsey
C’mon!

Jerome
Fine. You asked for this.

Kelsey
Fuckin’ finally! Thank you!

Jerome
You’re terrible. I hate your writing. You’re stories have nothing original to offer. You’re dialect is pedestrian at best. In fact, you probably don’t understand that line. You probably don’t see anything wrong with that way of doing things. You probably think it’s all fine as long as people buy into your shit, but you do NOTHING to hold yourself up to a test of time. Fuck: in five years, your books will be in a discount bin.

\\Kelsey abruptly leaves, knocking her chair into seats behind her. Jerome continues to sit, starring at his half-full cup\\

Kelsey
Fuck you. You’re a waste.

This was an attempt at something different. I have ideas to continue it, maybe write a full scene…

I have to thank Bekki, Jacob and Casey for direction.

No, I will probably never make this anything more than text. I’m not a director. Hell, I am barely a writer, but I thought I would try my hand at script writing for fun.

SUPPORT ME ON PATREON TO GET THESE EARLY!

I would like to take this moment to highlight that I released another book! Well, it’s a re-edit of You’re Not Dead, but it includes a large collection of other stuff! It’s now over 200 pages!

Any Patreon who donates any amount of money gets their name in the ‘thank you’ section!

Oh: Glory Days!

I got my copies of my book today!

I’m still looking for distribution sites to link to, but the couple I have found have been listed on the usual page! As I have mentioned before, I will let you know as they come to my attention.

Anyway, make sure you are buying the right copy! Physical versions are listed over 200 pages, and digital copies are listed over 150 pages. Of course, that is due to formatting and whatnot. Content is not effected.

Check Your Inspiration

To start, this is not an attack on anyone. This is more a dissection of the situation at hand than a low-blow or a pathetic passive/aggressive barrage. I want to make people think about what they are sharing, not berate well-wishes and honest attempts.

I was sent something the other day showing a kid, after seven years, getting over his quadriplegia. It was amazing, to be sure, but the person followed it up with something along the lines of ‘look what he did! you can do it, too!’

Was that intended as a slight? Hell no. It was from a good friend who I have known forever, and I love them very much and hope they love me the same. Was it without forethought? Absolutely. The video they shared had many things different from what I experienced.

1. Accident implies spinal issues. I have brain damage. They are two very different things.
2. The equipment being used in the video are things that I have never seen before, let alone used. It is actually impossible to say “hey: this kid learned to walk in seven years. why can’t you?” in this situation because I don’t have access to everything this guy did.
3. There is no information on the personal goings on with this kid. Is he poor or rich? What kind of healthcare does he have access to? What other consequences other than the quadriplegia did he experience?

I am far from ragging on this kid. He went from having no fine motor skills to walking (with a walker, but still). It was impressive, but to turn around and ask me why I am not doing what he is doing is saying that we have the exact same experience. That is diminishing what I have been dealt, and is trivializing what he has accomplished.

-RANT-

While I have your attention, my book is available some places! I have links that can be found here, but it’s still being pressed and I don’t even have my copies yet! If you wish to order it, that’s amazing and I hope you enjoy! I will post way too much when I get my copies and even more when I have actual order information that I trust!