March 2009


I just started lesson five on the How to Think Sideways class (lesson six is up but I’ve been slow). This lesson … mind-blowing. If you can imagine tapping into your subconscious for all the things that motivate you, then putting THAT into your writing on a conscious level … it’s incredible.

I have two great ideas for stories from lesson 4, but I’m going with the SF one (any surprise?) because I can do a better job on this without a ton of research — I’ll need some (know someone who curses in Chinese?) but it’s set in Los Angeles and that’s a place I already know.

Click the box at the top of the sidebar on the right there for more information on the course, or you’re welcome to ask about it. I’ve gotten my money’s worth already and I still have the rest of the year to go.

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You got it: Texas police rob black and hispanic motorists

TENAHA — You can drive into this dusty fleck of a town near the Texas-Louisiana border if you’re African-American, but you might not be able to drive out of it — at least not with your car, your cash, your jewelry or other valuables.

That’s because the police here have allegedly found a way to strip motorists, many of them black, of their property without ever charging them with a crime. Instead, they offer out-of-towners a grim choice: voluntarily sign over your belongings to the town or face felony charges of money laundering or other serious crimes.

Because, yanno, there’s no racism anymore

I stopped by to make sure this blog hadn’t been spammed out, and in the stats it said someone searched for “having the courage to fail” and found their way here.

Interesting, because I’ve come to the conclusion that this isn’t my problem. I’m having trouble with the idea of success. Always have.

Why? Maybe it’s that standing up in front of people makes me want to puke, or having people make assumptions about me due to what I write (as if every novel is an autobiography or a political treatise) makes me cringe. I don’t want to be famous, and that’s what the rest of the writing world seems to be about. I just want to be paid and be left alone.

I need a damn good agent and a publisher who can sell my stories without me having to be around people.

First, I need to finish editing this book.

Going back to the beginning of this rendition of this mess, I have to say: just like I would not go to an auto mechanic if my chickens were sneezing, or to the farm store if my car won’t start, it does not make sense to me that I would, were I looking for resources on writing about people of color, go to a white person. The basic premise is fucked, even before you add the baroque levels of fuckedness that have accreted over the last couple of months. I don’t think that’s a lesson that a white woman should be trying to teach the internet.

— LiveJournal user Serrana, about the current race debate over on LJ

Which is an astute comment.

Makes me wonder if I’ve been a little too enthusiastic in “showing how it’s done”. Because I’m pretty white myself.

So if I’ve said anything offensive I hope someone tells me so I don’t do it again.