The Freedom of Being a Bad Writer

One of the good things about being a bad writer is, as previously discussed, very few people will read you, now and make comments that will distress and discourage you, so that your words may be preserved for posterity (also previously discussed). Thus the following……

First manned flight

It is normally assumed that….

Wright Brothers- made the first sustained, controlled, powered heavier-than-air manned flight at Kill Devil Hills, North Carolina, four miles (8 km) south of Kitty Hawk, North Carolina on December 17, 1903. (3 flights between 120 & 200 feet)

But…..

A journal named an August 1901 flight by Connecticut aviation pioneer Gustave Whitehead as the first successful powered flight in history, beating the Wright Brothers by more than two years. (Also there’s no filmed evidence; only a newspaper article and as we know newspapers aren’t always accurate- but I suppose the journal in the spirit of solidarity with another published journal of 1901 felt inclined to make that statement)

And some will point out….

On Oct. 15, 1783, the Montgolfiers brothers launched a balloon on a tether with Jean-François Pilâtre de Rozier, a chemistry and physics teacher, as the passenger. In that era, nobody knew if a person could withstand the rigors of being up in the air…I have to asked, therefore was Jean-Francois a willing passenger or was he knocked over the head, tied up and dumped in the basket…maybe in previous years he had marked down a young Montgolfier’s homework

While others great really het-up about the Wright Brothers …(quote from a website)

“The Wright Brothers’ achievement is sometimes erroneously (emotive word-obviously someone has strong feelings on the subject) “the first powered flight.” Even that’s disputed. (wow!-hang on folks here it comes….) The first powered flight was Henri Giffard’s steam-powered airship (image below) in 1852. On Sept. 24, 1852, Giffard traveled almost 17 miles (27 kilometers) from Paris to Trappes moving at about 6 miles per hour (10 kilometers/hour). His airship could be steered only in calm weather though. In wind, it could fly only in slow circles.”

(yeh fair comment on the flight bit, but suppose you did not want to fly in circles-it’s hardly a commercial prospect, or a good sound basis for lambasting the Wrights who at least went in a straight line in rough December weather)

And apparently Clément Ader went half the length of a football field (I cannot confirm if this was a European soccer field or an American Football field)  on a bat-winged setup that many view as the first manned, powered, heavier-than-air flight in 1890. (well that might have an attraction in Gotham City….)….and it should be pointed out he claimed he flew 330 feet, doesn’t seem anyone was interested- you’d have thought someone would have noticed a bat winged craft somewhere above the roof tops of Paris.

Well that’s all very interesting but no one ever takes into account any folk who (for one reason or another) made tremendous leaps from one high place to another, or in some cases attempts at leaps from one high place to another. I mean, after all it is moving through the air, and not touching the ground, unless of course they didn’t quite reach where they were intending to go, but that’s just being picky if you ask me.

And there was an intention to move through the air from one point to another, while a leap is a sort of power.

So if you ask me, (again, that is assuming someone is reading this) these claims have to be put in an historical perspective, and as with so many cases in history, the matter is open to interpretation.

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So Who Cares? No One Is Reading. The Freedom of Obscurity

Let’s Look On The Positive Side of Obscurity

Now let us be honest. Right. So let me be honest. No one is reading this blog; in the present that is, it is therefore a blog for the future. This gives me a great deal of freedom, as I do not have to worry about self-censorship or backlashes from any groups that were offended by something they read on the blog and are now cyber-heckling me. Nor do I need to worry about any legal action from any commercial concern; if folk who read blogs for entertainment are not going to read it, then why should I worry about commercial concerns with far more important things to do, such as making a profit or failing that a loss which they can shift onto some hapless soul who is not too swift on economics. Or cause even more pressure by expecting to be entertained, informed or enlightened by every blog.

So free of such constraints I am going to take my UK stand against commercial companies who send out junk mail in brown envelopes. For those who live elsewhere, it has been a decades old tradition that correspondence from central or local government should always be sent in brown envelopes. So if a UK citizen sees a brown envelope lying upon the doormat, then they have to prepare themselves for a dose of Officialdom.

But now in a sneaky attempt to get us to read things we don’t care to commercial outfits are sending their tawdry items in brown envelopes in the hope that we will unsuspectingly open them and be caught by snare of their words.

Well let me tell you Sneaky Company as far as I am concerned you take your product and imitate the actions of a suppository with it! How dare you try and use the noble brown envelope for such shabby business. If I had wanted your products I would have sought them out on the net! –

Ha!!

(Y’see any popular blogger would have to spend such a long time worrying about how to present that. Not me. Because no one is reading my blogs. Ha-ah! I am free to say just what I like and it is persevered for….errrr…well it is preserved!)

You see there are benefits to being totally unknown!

Things to Do While Waiting for Success (2- Perspective and the Future)

Ok, so nothing is happening to your work, and no one seems to care. There you are with your BLOG and your FACEBOOK account AND your TWITTER (thing?), with a #; but the only person who visits is yourself when you check just what you wrote last night (or three weeks ago, if you had been in a SFW mood).

It is therefore time to consider your work in the context of Human History, after all there will always be someone trying to find out just what ‘we’ were getting up to, during the ‘Past’ (or ‘Present’). Now since the vast amount of written work on paper will be lost, torn, burnt or shredded, any future historian will be so excited when they find a few bits of paper, from ‘long ago’, the more obscure the better. For an obscure person of today is the ‘Common Person’ of tomorrow and the voice of the ordinary person; just the sort the historians like to find.

Now it is very important that if you should wish to take part in this sure-fire way of gaining immortality, it is important to get a print-out of everything you have on the cyber world, because it is possible that (a) Civilisation will crash and how to make the stupid things from the 20th/21st centuries to work properly has been lost OR (b). Civilisation will not crash, but the computer technology will be so advanced that it will not be able to read such primitive stuff and in true programme fashion refuses to co-operate in any attempt to do so OR (c) A.I will flourish and the A.I community will calculate that no one in The Modern Era will be interested in the sort of stuff recorded in the 20th/21st centuries and wipe it clear to make room for the more important modern stuff.

So with this in mind get a good strong container, carefully wrap all your work within several air tight layers and seal it, then having filled a box (Oh come on you must be able to fill a box with your work; as an unsuccessful writer you should have a goodly collection of papers); prepare to fill another one. Thus will all your work be preserved!

Now at this stage before you get too carried away, you will need to plan where you will have your work stored, when you are part of history. Also you should ensure you have started to keep a diary as this will be essential for an Historian when studying the Common Person.

I tell you, it’s a certain way to gain immortality!

On Getting Noticed- As A Writer that is

While we are all thinking about ways to encourage ourselves during the long lean period of waiting to be recognised (see post 20th July 2015) it is worthwhile wondering about the strategies on how to be noticed. Of course there are many wise and helpful hints on how to do this. However in a realms where the blogs and tweets are as numerous as the stars in sky getting noticed about anything is hard work, never mind the circumstance of having to make people think they want to read your book (Oh yes, that’s what you are trying to do, and don’t let anyone tell you otherwise; the niches and the genres are as full as a commuter transport device during the rush-hour and you are struggling for at least elbow room).

There are stratagems which although might not have been successful are worthy of comment for their heroic scope in determination and imagination.

  1. Standley Bunchberry:-a person who struck his impressionable teens during the 1960s and opted for the angry, brooding, sardonic personae really got into his stride by the turn of the millennium by gaining access to an empty building opposite a bookshop on the day a much touted and commercially sound author had their latest release. Standley with a hundred copies of  (by his own admission) his masterpiece ‘Breaking Scones at The Bus Shelter’ threw out copies of the said work while crying loudly ‘Save You Money, and your Intellect! Read this!’ He’d failed to remember that the avant-garde of the late 1960s-1970s with its intention to shock and surprise both physically and mentally had faded from the population, in particular the physical bit. People who had grown up with that had got older and thus tetchy. Younger people objected to having their personal space intruded upon by 200+ bound pages.Everyone had something, not very favourable to say about it. Although he realised early on that in the name of art the crowd were not likely to stop the police stopping him, he quit, leaving his books behind. He was obliged to change his name, hair colouring and location to avoid the authorities, those struck or nearly struck by the books and also the few who had actually read some of the said work.

2. Curdley Hollinbrou: decided one needed to stand out, and managed to take a mundane route. He firstly changed his name to Plain John Smith, and people kept misunderstanding  by thinking he was making reference to his name and so recorded  him as John Smith and his submissions were confused with thousand of others by folk who were using the name same literally or ironically. He then changed it to Not Henry Jones and offended several people in the publishing industry either with that name or had close associations with a Henry Jones and wanted to know just why he did not want to be known as Henry Jones, which flustered him a little and as his style of explaining irony was not very effective he just came across as someone who objected to the name with such a vehemence that he wished the world to know about it. He finally settled on K. Henning. Bradspie; people wanted to know why he had punctuation in his name, he said he hadn’t noticed, it did not leave a good impression, but he stuck with the name and opted for writing works with very odd titles. ‘Under The Florid Visage  of The Lock Keeper’s Daughter’ failed because he could not get beyond the title. ‘Looking for Bunchberry and Other Recipes’ an internet serving only served to get him hit in the face by a total stranger who said ‘leave me alone’. ‘Uncle Soloventure’s Last Ice Cream’  was sent to a possible publisher wherein sat a sub-editor of a compassionate nature who misconstrued the metaphor and ‘K’ was visited by the police and social services who both expressed concern for his mental stability and potential for self-harm. After this he turned his skill to criticism and now spends his time long, involved and disgruntled reviews on Amazon which no one understands, much less feels inclined to comment on.

3. Harriet Jasmine Lentil. Upon deciding that  she was wasting her time with publishers, agents and other such stuff took to self-publishing on a grand scale. As there is no one to stop her, she has currently accumulated a catalogue of some 53 books, covering such subjects as Cooking: ‘Shrimps and Mashed Swedes in  Ten Ways’; Travelling: ’10 useless travel guides’ (not subject to court action as none has noticed it); Biographies :’ Beans and Gladstone’ Military History: ‘ Waterloo- Montgomery’s First Gamble’; Romance: ‘Pale As The Gooseberry Hairs’ and Action/Thriller: ‘Let Slip The Dogs That Chew’. She possesses 10 Facebook identities; has 3 Twitter accounts, 4 websites and contributes to 50 forums. Apparently not even trolls have noticed her. She views it all as Very Promising.

I am sure there is inspiration enough for everyone.

Things to Do While Waiting for Success (1-look what others say about not getting there)

It is all well and good reading accounts by folk who said they spent a number of years in obscurity before they became an overnight success I have no argument with these and wish them well.

It is also worthy for successful folk to feel that the right thing to do is to tell you there will be many disappointments but to persevere is the right thing; there is nothing quite like achievement to prove to be a soothing balm to the past.

These positive statements can be a bit of a pain at the time when one is in slough of despondency after another rejection.

What is actually needed are wise words which are of comfort for folk who are facing the fact that they might never, ever see their words have some popular acclaim. Such as:

“A life spent making mistakes is not only more honourable, but more useful than a life spent doing nothing.” George Bernard Shaw. (Be fair that’s just the sort for thing you need to now, after all  what could be more noble than carrying on in the face of failure and having it endorsed by such as Shaw)

“I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.” Edisdon (Now that is just the one you need as the rejections pile up.)

So get onto the net and type in searches for Quotes on failure and ignore the smug ones put out by folk who want to step on someone and print out the most uplifting then stick the quotes to your writing machine.

In the next post we shall look at what ways we can invent of our own to staunch the urge to give up.

: The RaggedTrousered Philanthropists- by Robert Tressell was published in 1914, he died in 1911- lesson – you never know when your work will strike a chord

Lack of Success and subsequent Writer’s Block. Strategy and Tactics.

Well of course it is bound to happen. The struggling writer ends up with a few months’ worth of rejections and most ordinary folk begin to conclude that there is something wrong with their output in either substance, style, or both, or maybe because their pen-name is all wrong (Perhaps Prehenderghast Devilblade sounds better as a character?). Anyway the flow of creation grows sluggish and thence stagnant, and it is very depressing to be sitting there at a keyboard with the minutes seeping away and nothing but ‘There was…’ on the page. (Although though give Derryk his due, he did send that off to a poetry magazine, in the hope that someone might read something into it- apparently they didn’t)

One answer to this is to start off with the vaguest notion of a plot or even just an idea and then give way to the Stream of Consciousness approach to writing, not even bothering to wonder about structure or even content, just bang out the words as they flow from your mind, considering how the character might feel if you were the character and not someone who you thought might be the character…….. Think of the work as a loaf of bread, a number slices which individually looks small but placed in a wrapping has a substance which says unto the world ‘I Am Bread!’

And speaking of Bread I don’t know how things are in the rest of the world, but in the UK, when sliced bread came out first and developed we had Thin Sliced Bread and Medium Sliced Bread and finally Thick Sliced Bread, but gradually the Medium became the Thin and the Thick Became the Medium and thus did the manufactures lead into the realm of Extra Thick or Toasting Bread to make us think we were getting something extra!

‘Getting something extra. When we are just getting the same for a higher cost,’ Garnstang said bitterly and ground the half smoked cigarette into the pavement, noting with grim satisfaction the look of distain from the approaching young woman; he’d forced her out of her fashionably secure bubble to make her fashionably reactive pose’

Now you carry on like that for an hour or so, with a cup of favoured herbal brew at your side at that stage you should stop because you might be getting out of breath, or annoying another householder by the sound caused by the frantic tapping of the keyboard. Anyway you’ll have to go back to Spell-Check to make adjustments and also there will be time spent make dismissive noises at Word’s accusation of you using Reflexive Pronouns or Fragments.

You should then consider does this stand as a narrative or could you take portions and put them in other places or adds bits on. Taking the example above:

‘Think of work as a loaf of bread…..’ that could be said by another character desperately trying to find a way to justify their humdrum existence.

‘And speaking of bread….’ Could be amended to ‘Huh! Don’t’ get me started on Bread’ which could be spoken by a second character and adapted into their view on consumer society.

The other bit of Garnstang should stand as if is. One should always have a bitter character who is being obnoxious.

(In the 1950s- 1970s in the UK you couldn’t move for these types spitting out their bile or ‘earthy’ (moronic) views at hapless and passive other characters. Apparently all were metaphors for what was wrong with Society while the author missed the entire point that what was wrong was with the character themselves….Looser!! They seemed to be more nuanced these days and tend blame corporations, governments or small town social groups)

Anyway there you have the start of something, three disaffected folk in a town, there’s bound to be something you can do with that.

Annnddddd you’ve started writing again!!!

‘Who cares about those editors and agents! What to they know’ you say to yourself and stride forth once more on another venture and this time….It will be different!!

(Go writers! Go!!)

On Dealing With Rejection

By this I do not mean social or emotional. We are of course dealing with the day we get the notification our latest effort is not wanted. Of course it could argued that getting a letter from a publisher or literary agent which, no matter how they phrase it, says ‘Go Away and don’t bother us’ comes under both categories. That aside this missive contains suggestions on how to deal with the business; while maintaining the fiery independence which makes you the writer you are. (Yes I know the word ‘unpublished’ springs to mind, but let us not quibble with trifles at this juncture. We are seeking to maintain the small, slender flame of your will to carry on)

Emotional Responses

One should not be afraid of letting go, after all you have spent time crafting this, and who are these people NOT to appreciate the efforts which have gone into this work? Did they bother to read the whole depth and ponder on the underlying sub-texts and the subtle crafting of the interplays of imagery?  Did they? Huh-did they-huh? You get the idea don’t you?  So the important thing to do is to give vent to your feelings to work off the disappointment and not give way to woeful despondency and fall into the trap of thinking ‘Oh woe! What a pitiful creature am I! I should bother the world anymore with my scribblings?’  

A traditional approach is to grasp the letter firmly in both hands and tear it into small pieces, which can be dropped into a bin. This is slightly pedestrian in my opinion and is just the sort of thing the writer  of this rejection would expect and shrug over. Now some might say the pieces should be dropped into the toilet and flushed away, however being very domestic on this approach I would suggest writing paper or printer paper (if you had an e-mail) is not designed to be co-operative with lavatory mechanics and the bits will simply float there mockingly, now some might say this is fine because the next time you…..but no we shall not dwell any further, let’s look at more imaginative approaches.

With the letter firmly grasp(ed) growl with a passion and tear at it with your teeth, and spit the bits out into a bin (one must maintain a certain respect for hygiene).  True this may lack a certain dignity that some folk might look for, but others feel it can show the correct amount of justifiable rage the writer might feel. Swallowing the pieces is not recommended, apart from the possible disagreement with the digestive system, there is the metaphorical image of the writer ingesting, excreting  and thus taking to heart the words of the rejecter which is quite the opposite intention you wish to convey.

Now another: Carefully holding the letter with a suitable pair of tongs, set fire to it, ensuring the entire wretched thing is consumed in flames. The ashen remains should then be dropped to the floor and ground beneath your feet while you intone suitable epithets. I personally sing ‘Less than the dust beneath my chariot wheels art thou / More worthless than the used snuff are thee / Of more value is the fluff from the kitchen corner / Oh wretched purveyor of trite stuffs may gloom stalk thee everymore/ (By the way this practice should be carried on outside in the case of accidentally dropping the still burning paper will resultant distress. In addition grinding a burnt paper into a carpet or a kitchen floor will cause domestic upset as other people will not be that sympathetic with your distress.). I have thought about filming the event and posting it on YouTube or Facebook, but fate being what it is there is a chance of minor self-immolation and of course what self-respecting camera operating person would not hurry off leaving you in distress to promptly post a what they think unkindly as hilarious event on the Internet?

Methodical and Psychological.

An associate of mine, Phineas (it is his real name, and he has not spoken to his parents for many years now) a fellow of previous monumental output and matched in direction ratio by lack of success decided very early on that what was needed was to treat those who he began to see as the foe in like manner. So he collected and filed all of his rejection letters very carefully, while also noting with equal precision those submissions he did not receive a reply to.

After two years of careful preparation he released his revenge. Those who had sent letter received a letter from him; his letters varied in style and exact wording in response to the rejection letter, but followed a basic format. This was a rejection of their rejection in which he stated the failings in their rejection; he would cite insufficient information as to why they had rejected his work, or find errors in their use of English (to be fair to the publisher/ agent Phineas was using 19th Century rules of grammar which would bring a grim nod of approval from the stoniest of pedants of those times). He would then conclude that as they had shown failings in these areas he had to conclude they had not understood the body of his work and should (note not ‘would’ that was far too a submissive word for him in this mood) thus re-consider his submission. Much to his own grim and perverse satisfaction he never received a reply except for instances of the work returned with compliment slip bereft of comment. He would thus say ‘Ha! Typical!’  and go seeking out others to torment.

His downfall was when he came to tackle those who had not replied in the first place. He had set up a website called ‘Donotwasteyourtimewiththeseignorantfolk.com’ and listed each and every one stating the date he had posted submissions to them. There was the rather obvious failing that he had only sent submissions by postal services without making any arrangements for proof and receipt of the said work so burden of proof was hard, which might have been overlooked if he’d been a bit more diplomatic in the naming of his website. However the comments he made against each alleged recipient did in some cases positively leap over the bonds of libellous. Luckily for him as with most of us, his efforts were obscure and largely overlooked. Truth be known the only contact he had was from his brother-in-law who in addition to being a lawyer of some talent is very caring of the welfare of his young sister who had alerted him to her spouse’s current polemic. The contact as we say in the UK Civil Service covered the 3 Cs Clear, Concise and Correct, an e-mail which said ‘What the hell do you think you’re playing at???!!!’. Frantic phone calls and further more detailed correspondence explained possible civil action through the courts encouraged Phineas to shut down the site quickly, expunging its comments (well he hoped)

These days he restricts his literary efforts to genuine helpful hints on gardening forums for therein lies his true talents, in this he is happier, but occasionally he looks back to those heady times with touch of nostalgia.

It’s the most many of us can hope for. Bloodied but unbowed.

A short history of pre-internet failiures (and comparsions) and what to do when you find you are not original

Now personally I am most at ease when I am writing Fantasy stories; since 1978 in fact when (in all modesty) I pioneered the comic sub-genre. The flaw in this was that the tales were written on scraps of A5 paper in my own hand, which should be best described as ‘interesting’ and crammed into a paper wallet. One day these were shown to a fellow work-mate who was also a reader of Fantasy and claimed to have contacts and ‘also ‘knew things’.

What these things were or who the contacts might have been it was not my fate to find out. We were working for a ***redacted*** and these were ***redacted*** times, suffice it to say we went in somewhat different directions. Yet a year later in the city of ***redacted*** as I was being swept along by a crowd going in one direction I noticed him being swept in the opposite direction. I was for talking but you know the problems you can get into by trying to stop a crowd, aside from the physical ones people do get accusatory as if the whole world is geared to their wishes and plans anyhow judging by his grim demeanour it appeared he had Other Things on his mind and was an enthusiastic part of the crowd going the other way and so that was that.

Well, I carried on writing bits and pieces and intending to put them together but somehow there never seemed to be the time nor the resources to send them anywhere, apart from those occasional grand gestures inexperienced writers get to do; the tragi-comic process of sending a handwritten letter with handwritten bits of work to very large and prestigious publishing companies without checking if they are remotely interested in your type of work. I was not downcast by not getting replies. No sir! It was obvious they were only concerned with the trendy, the famous and the fashionable…..well I’d show them!!

So in the process of ‘showing them’ I found that I was not a pioneer in this sub-genre, there were and had been others before and about me who were in varying degrees of success writing Fantasy and being funny in the process. Maybe not quite as funny, but nonetheless funny or worse humorous, incisive and witty.

It is indeed difficult to place your piece about the villain slipping on their robe and falling headfirst into a privy above a pithy paragraph which manages to combine wry comments on the genre, the expectations and some fragile perceptions  in contemporary society with a colourful piece of action.

This all took place before there was an Internet and these days anyone can put up any sort of fiction or stuff masquerading as fact without much interruption. However it would seem that similar obstacles still intrude upon those who would have aspirations to being accepted by prestigious or even modest publishers . (Only these days the poorly researched submission would of course be e-mailed- and probably to someone in the organisation who has long since left or closed down that e-mail account)

At this stage there are a few options open.

(1) Give up the whole business and turn your energies to a hobby or interest which does not require placing the finished work before some person or personages for acceptance. In part I have gone down this road, I make post apocalyptical ruined cities out of card, with at least one building bearing an indication it was once the location of a publishers.

(2) Take the Bitter and Brooding approach and write savage and grim pieces on the follies of society in general while lamenting its failure to appreciate the true worth of whatever takes your fancy. Then post it up on a website and continue in this vein until you either tire of it or the website tires of you. At this stage you should go into self-publishing small volumes of angry poetry; it doesn’t matter what you are angry about, no one is likely to notice, which will only prove, to you, how misunderstood you are; this should keep you in inspiration for years, although the number of Christmas Cards you get will likely shrink. But art must have its sacrifices!! You should also get rid of any T-shirts you have with (apparently) funny statements or captions. You can’t go around the place with a grim brooding face and a funny T-shirt; just take a look at those who do. One if not both messages are being negated by the other.

(3) Shrug it all off with a small smile and justify your efforts as creating a sub-sub-genre which will one day have it’s…..errr….day, and devoted following.

(4) Get yourself a website and complain about something. It doesn’t really matter what, if you go on long enough, fill it will contradictory statements and as few verifiable facts you will be bound to get a following, particularly if you blame the government (of your country) and the CIA/NSA, this is always a winning combination.

Of course you will note that none of the above will be any the more likely to get your original work published, but all of them are less work, and in the case of (2) & (4) require no application of intelligence or artistic effort whatsoever.

Style over Substance?

I had intended to discuss the question of how to formulate plots and which plots make for less toilsome writing, but I received a letter from an old comrade-in-unpublishedness which set my thoughts along another path, that of Style.

By this I refer not to questions of what sort of tables you should sit at, or if ragged old but friendly clothes rather than fashionably new casual outfits set the correct balance between comfort and inspiration, but the matter of delivery of the story.

Some might think this an obvious conclusion, but you would be surprised, there are those with possibly more resources than talent having decided they need a room solely for the purpose of writing, set to the task of interior decorating with more effort, reflection and self-examination than possibly Dostoyevsky had in producing Crime and Punishment.

But I digress.

My comrade of many years…

Now his name is not actually Brinsleg Garstzrym; it is a pen-name in which he has submerged his identity, so much so I have quite forgotten his true name. For the years of our association he has been fixated on having a unique name. This resulted in failure with various combinations of European Names; it was astounding, those already in existence, you had to marvel at the ingenuity of parents. There was also his chagrin at being mistaking for folk at the top of their very learned profession, or worse when the internet came into being some finding out that colleagues (and rivals) of theirs were being bemused at this learned person being associated with some less than impressive works of fiction being posted under the said person’s name.

In addition as he is actually a compassionate, careful and caring fellow he is also not wishing to cause offense. I did press him to adopt his one creation of Obhadynka Azimbouf as it would surely be of advantage when writing comic or Metafiction for the reader would be so transfixed by the name that they would be half way through the story before they even began to wonder about its worth, but he had of late become agitated that he may be causing offense to goat herders who were Uzbek. Even though I pressed the case that the likelihood of any such indomitable folk reading his works as being very rare. Also whereas I could not claim to be an expert in their language I was sure the words comprising this name would be met with at best blank stares, and possibly an invite to lie down in the shade. But he would not be persuaded. And thus  Brinsleg Garstzrym he stayed and decided this was a name best suited to the more muscular forms of SF writing.

Which he therefore, makes valiant efforts at.

Naturally, being a dweller in the literary deserts where recognition is as water I sympathise with him and feel he should be given some recognition. There is much frenetic action, with central characters dashing about in all directions, expounding views while managing to cut down foes with unerring accuracy and hosts of lesser characters many of whom provide stereotypes and roles suitable shields or decoys dying in noble fashion with a few last memorable words. In fact there is so much going on that romance or erotica barely gets a mention, and as for a plot, well in my opinion that would only provide clutter. Brinsleg has always maintained there is a plot but that Action is a Metaphor for Life. He is a far deeper thinker than I…. But you must judge for yourselves.

In this I give you an extract from Iron Hounds of The Stellar Rim   (with Brinsleg’s permission; he feels if he can get the stories beyond editors and away from less prestigious blogs he will find his true audience)

The blood ochre sky was filled with the noise of tearing metals, burning towers and dying life. Across the pitted landscape poured the ranks of the Klongs of Zurg chanting the praises of the Warlord Scourgeous. They were mindless of causalities, no matter how many got blown up.

Captain Fryzzn frowned and composed himself. He might die this day, but he must do his duty. Nearby his last Multi-Laser Gun blew up.

“Flag Sergeant Grundeg,” he said calmly “Find Lieutenant Frish I need him to form a flank,”

“Sorry Captain,” Grundeg said calmly, as if on a parade ground “He was just blown up,”

“Pity, he was a promising young officer,” Fryzzn clapped a hand on Grundeg’s shoulder “Then gather up the Reprobates and form a flank. The left one, I think,”

The sergeant smiled grimly, he said something, but a nearby tank got blown up so Fryzzn couldn’t hear him. Then he was distracted by a guttural, savage, loud roar, as one of the muscular large bestial Klongs leapt onto of the barricade, wielding its atomic axe and blowing up the machine gun nest. Fyrzzn levelled his meson blaster, squeezed the trigger and the creature blew apart.

Colonel Spritzenhurg limped up, his grim face bending into a slight smile.

“Fryzzn, I had you marked down as a dam idealistic liberal fool, but you fight as hard as any. This line must hold, the other companies have all been blown up. We must hang on until reinforcements arrive and blow up these hordes,”  

“It will be done,” Fryzen said.

“Good,” Spritzenhurg said

And stepped into his command vehicle, which rose up into the debris heavy air.

Over the last remaining intact building it blew up.

“Guess ol’ Spritzen-guts couldn’t stomach them beanz we all had to force down last night,” drawled Corporal ‘Eagle-High’ Larwson, laconically as he drew an aim on an enemy flyer, snappering the release button and watching the Ion-Grenade arc upwards, striking the craft so that it blew up.

Fryzzn’s mind was buzzing with thoughts, when the slender grimed and blooded form of Lieutenant Ceeyleah Windrush appeared at his side. She smiled through the rivulets of blood seeping down her scalp.

“You are hurt,” he said

“You should see the others,” she whispered “What’s left of them. WE blew the entire squadron up,”

“You brave girl,” he said and he kissed her head, she smiled then swayed against his firm chest.

“Medic!” he cried.

Two turned up laid the young woman on a stretcher and loped off to the rear.

They had just turned the corner of the ruined civilian-hab when there came and awful screaming of an incoming Fry-Bomb.

The entire corner blew up.

Wordless tears streaming down his face Fryzzn picked up the atomic axe, no man should have been able to heft one.

He screamed in wordless anger

And began, singularly to blow up any and every Klong he saw.

There is a whole two hundred pages of this and I don’t see why it has not been published, there is much action, doomed romance, a tragic hero and a noble vengeful cause of slaughtering ugly aliens, and thus I think is more than enough Style for anyone.

As I suggested earlier you of course must make up your own minds, but please let me know your views on the matter.

Up-date…….. And in the spirit of this blog, in this month of September I have finally found Tags & Categories!! This could be the big-breakthrough….which might spoil the nature of the blog…..Ah me…beset by choices

              

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