Toxic Undertones

Quite recently I’ve been caught off guard with a handful of ‘bad’ social media interactions which have served as a stark reminder of how toxic and volatile the underbelly of social media really is. There seems to be a consensus of those laying in wait, ready to pounce upon negative situations with their own negativity sparked from a desire to either be a troll or to be an opportunist in the face of adversity in order to get follows, likes and interaction. This can seem to happen at any time and it’s something I’ve always known but presently perhaps forgot while my momentum is building and my following is growing.

As an author in the modern social media age, my market is based mostly within it, and as much as I would love to just turn around and walk away, I’m not in that position just yet, although it’s just another driving factor to get me there. Having a higher following on social media will attract many lower level folk who are trying to get their own foothold and sometimes they use whatever leverage they can to climb. Such recent experiences have forced me to back away from my usual level of engagement, especially on Twitter which is a particularly volatile, mob cultured petri dish of assholery that can turn on you in an instant. The ‘mute notifications’ button has been utilised is recent days.

While this post isn’t an attempt to vent, it’s become an opportunity to do so and that’s okay, this is my patch. And my philosophy on book reviews is simpler now: they don’t actually matter in the broadest of senses, I cannot help but sometimes notice the ilk of review that is literally an attempt to troll, or be funny. Although after a night’s sleep the nagging pain they cause is gone, and I am big enough and old enough to know my stuff is in the public domain and that it isn’t for everyone but any type of cross word against me will affect me, I’m human after all. Any review really, is a good review, because it’s proof somebody took the time to look at your words and possibly buy it. Most of them aren’t constructive, even the positive ones, what I can do with ‘your book was great’, although I still appreciate the sentiment. No matter what anyone says, they’ll never know the journey, the struggle and the ultimate satisfaction of being a better person for finishing the crafting of a book. Their words about your words will never match them.

I guess all of this is just the symptom or the outcome of reaching a new plateau of a bigger following. This blog is growing and the content includes reviews and investigations of other parties who might not appreciate that so perhaps this is a glass house situation. My ambition has always been to write books and tell stories, no amount of toxicity will stop that, after all I am radioactively coated in stubbornness, so I’ll always survive, it’s all I know what to do. It’s up to us as individuals not to get lost on the journey.

Weekly Ramble #76

Those two words. The ones every writer aims for, but many never get to. Truth is, they don’t come along that often for me. Even though the back list will say otherwise, all good things in this world worth having, take time and work. 

It does just start by putting one word in front of the next in succession. All stories are just a series of words put together in an orderly fashion physically but within that order is where you’ll find the story and our vessel is the imagination.

Reaching the summit of a story is both empowering and sombre. It’s a goodbye after all, and living with the characters who have completed their journeys and arcs makes everything seem quiet for a while or even empty when they are done. I guess the same can be said for life also, and relationships or even the times. They end and new ones spring up eventually.

I’m constantly driven by what’s next on the horizon, what I’ve done in the present isn’t enough, I could tell you the next five projects I plan on trudging to next. This writing deal has never been a sprint, but an endless marathon. I’m too busy for it to reach the end… 

 

Weekly Ramble #51

As Avril Lavigne once sung; ‘things are trying to settle down’… and for me they are. This year in all truth has kicked my ass, but things are all good after what has been a journey and a half.

My 5th book is going to be released next month. I’ve deliberately kept my cards close to my chest for this one. My last release ‘Cemetery House’ burned me big time. I set too high of an expectation and the funny thing is about this year’s release is that I don’t have an expectation other than to publish it without a hitch.

There are still a few spaces for BETA readers if your interested in looking at something different and short so it won’t take up too much time. I’m proud of it and what it represents. You’ll see the blurb soon and then the cover by the end of the month. I think as bloggers, story tellers and content creators its pretty damn important to be proud of what we do. If there weren’t creatives in this world it would be one hell of a dull place.

I know I cannot live without having an outlet for my art. I hope that lasts my whole life because I got a lot of stories that need telling and there are a lot of stories that I need to read.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Real Neat Blog Award Nomination II (+ tags)

The Hall of information has received it’s fourth award nomination of 2019!

It truly is an honor to be noticed as a blogger and I would like to thank big time blog-star Megan from A Geeky Gal for the nod. Let me take this opportunity to tell you about what a great blogger she is!

geeky galMegan is the epitome of blogging and without doubt one of the benchmarks that I follow for inspiration . Not only does she blog about all things geek but she also blogs about some very important subjects in the field of self care and mental health in the geek community. Very recently Megan completed a 30 Day Geek out Challenge which not only shows how dedicated she is to blogging but also how similar our tastes are in so many different things! So thank you to Megan for the nomination! 

real neat

The Rules:

  • Display the Award Logo.
  • Thank the blogger who nominated you and post a link to their blog.
  • Answer the questions of the one who nominated you.
  • Nominate 7-10 bloggers.
  • Ask them seven questions.

Questions from Megan: 

1. Where do you see yourself in 10 years?

That depends of how self assured you want me to be… If things continue the way they are going now then the dreamer in me would like to think things would be pretty good. I’m certain the next decade will probably be the most important of my life as a writer and of course the person outside of those efforts. There’s a big motherfu**ing world of opportunity out there that I intend to go after and that includes seizing every moment I get. A couple more amazon reviews wouldn’t be a bad thing either…

2. Who or what is your spirit animal?

The cliche answer would be Dave Grohl of the Foo Fighters but I’ve heard at least two people say the same. I like to be different because I am so I’m gonna say my spirit animal would be the wind. Fierce sometimes and gentle on other occasions. You can’t see it like most spirits but it’s there, always (deep right).

3. What is one thing on your bucket list?

Above all I would love to see my writing make its way to the big screen and then be a success. Most of my stuff is written in a cinematic style and to even see the trailer of something I wrote would be enough to convince me this was all worth it (plus there would probably be tears…).

4. What is your strategy for the zombie apocalypse?

Well I can’t shoot, I don’t like to run (even though I can) and I’ve never really been one to fight so my efforts would sway towards hiding out of sight most probably above ground with some beer and just let the whole thing play out…

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5. What movie/book character are you most like?

dickens

Great question! And right now I have the perfect answer although I may appear to be reaching here but at this point in time I see myself as being mostly like Charles Dickens from the 2017 film ‘the man who invented Christmas’. The film highlights Dickens struggle to pen his most famous, the most famous Christmas story.

Now people are probably thinking how dare you compare to such a literary master and if I told you the true reason why I see myself as him I would be giving all my cards away – let’s just say this year and the festive season coming may have a quite a surprise in store… For anyone who is a fan of Dickens, literature and of course ‘a Christmas Carol’ I highly recommend taking a look at this film!

6. If you could do anything you want for a living, what would it be?

The older I get the more I have come to appreciate the English language. Now I don’t see myself as an academic but if money was no option I would seriously consider being an English literature teacher. There’s a lot of great literature out there that just isn’t reaching the generations of kids in a way it deserves to be recognised, teaching stuff like that needs someone relatively hip and with it; I am both of those things, plus I’ve written books and plays… #morethanqualified – and I mean that without any course to put down any teachers currently out there – you guys rock!

robin quote

7. If we were all forced to wear a warning label,  what would yours say?

‘Warning: This writer will use what you say, do or think in a future project. Speak, act or think at your own risk’…

or more realistically ‘keep away from booze’ 

A huge thanks to Megan for the nomination and now it’s my turn to nominate the following for the real neat blog award: 

  1. LillBlu1981
  2. Mullen Crafts
  3. Stoner on a Rollercoaster
  4.  Debjani’s Thoughts
  5.  Christina Engela
  6. The Alchemist’s Studio
  7. Book Steff’s Bookish Blog

And here are the questions for the nominees: 

  1.  If you were to give a TED talk, what would be your specialist subject?
  2.  What is your favourite season of the year and why?
  3.  If you could time travel, where are you going? The past or the future? And why?
  4.  (Stolen from Megan because it’s a good question) Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
  5.  Name a book, a tv show or a film that you could watch or read over and over again?
  6.  Are you superstitious?
  7.  What do you think is the most important invention of the past 20 years?

 

Of course anyone who hasn’t been nominated is free to participate and those that do remember to link me in the post so I can see those answers! Rock and roll man! Peace out….

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Weekly Ramble #47

Blog Post 301. Not a bad milestone to reach. I originally put this blog together to display my writing prowess and the ironic thing is my 300th post wasn’t really about my writing as such, it was about sharing my book promotional efforts to help other authors. 

Things only really start to move when a writer decides they are no longer an island. I mean I could go on and on about my books but between me and you and it isn’t the most riveting of subjects. It’s self centered to constantly talk about one’s stuff and the only real way we learn in life is by reaching out and listening to the trials or errors of others. My writing does the talking for me and how the reader interprets what I have to say is down to them.

My default philosophy when I have any writing ‘success’ is not to celebrate and wave it like a flag but to think how I am going to share with others how it happened. There is a historic reason why people help each other and it’s not for the recognition or for the spotlight; people help each other because it makes the individual feel good for doing so; I guess this only applies to the honest amongst us.

And when someone is honest they are representing the truth and the truth is something real and when something real it is something you can feel.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Weekly Ramble #42

As creators we live and die by reviews of our works. In a world that seems so damn difficult to get them, when we do sometimes the process seems worth it. Of course I’m referencing to the good and I’ve been there before with the bad; sometimes it’s okay to respond but not directly, more as an exercise to flesh out feelings and to process.

It’s kind of weird that the stuff we create is judged by the final product. Very rarely do we get judged by how we endured a journey in flexing our creativity to get there, or for our ideas that may sit outside the box. Even though good reviews are marvelous, and bad ones, well they exist, I have always found the most rewarding part of creating is finishing it. Everything else – the editing, the cover art work, the opinions, they are a by-product of that initial accomplishment.

To be confident enough to release your work out into to world is an achievement enough so when we get a review, from a reader we don’t know, the feeling can cap off the already immense experience of creating.

To those who have reviewed my work, good and bad – thank you.

Pilot

It has been 5 years since the Hall of Information opened it’s doors. Here’s a look back at the first ever blog entry. A nod and a thank you to everyone who has supported this; old or new!

Lee's Hall of information

It’s that moment, much like when you watch the first ever episode of a TV show you come to love years later.

Where it all begins, a wild eye medical intern called JD passes through the walls of a daunting hospital known as sacred heart. Or that moment a cartoon layabout and accidental time traveler meets a well-known robot bending unit, unaware he has just stepped into a suicide booth.. Yes I am referencing TV pop culture because apparently it’s appealing. I pity the fool who doesn’t use pop culture to entertain, ok I’ll stop now.

Many of us have those favorite shows we watch over the years but never see the pilot. We will have that eureka moment when we realise why something is the way it is. That is of course if you are lucky enough to be around for the first episode. For you this is that…

View original post 1,201 more words

Weekly Ramble #37

Things never turn out how you expect them to. I guess the perception of one person can be clouded by the situation they find themselves in. Kind of like the sound of your voice, it seems different on film or recordings compared to hearing it out loud, either way its cringe. 

Writers lay in wait to find out if their stuff is well received, sometimes they never truly know but a live performer gets feedback almost instantly. An audience will react immediately with an applause or just a gasp or even worse silence which can be deafening. Some of the best gags may even go ‘unlaughed’ straight away but have a way of burning into one’s mind even days later. We’ve all laughed at something out of the moment.

The true power of performance or art in general is how it makes an audience member feel long afterwards. It’s a special feeling to reminisce about a show or story you were a part of some time ago. To be remembered is probably the highest of accolades for anyone in the arts. Then again they only saw or read that story on their side of the fence, I guess it all leads back to perception. Others will even argue that having their work move someone in any kind of way is the greatest of rewards.

 

Weekly Ramble #36

 

38 Days. That’s how long I managed to stay away from alcohol. A personal best. A rather proud statistic. Even though I’ve never considered my consumption to be problematic, I decided to abstain to improve my overall health and even lose some weight. The weight loss thing is hard, damn hard, but I’m exercising regular and mostly injury free (back pain has plagued me for some years). 

Even though the next morning I had that all too familiar feeling of not having an interest in drinking for a while I had no remorse this time around. Those couple of mojitos and some number of ales quenched a thirst for a while and I had a fun night which is always my aim.

Now my aim is to stay on the sober path for longer; until my 30th birthday this August. Eventually I can see myself scaling back the alcohol consumption to near enough zero, but I am a writer so bare with me. Plus the social factor is huge, put those two things together and the cocktail of being a boozer appears. As I get older I am trying to be at the very forefront of a healthy lifestyle. Folks are living longer now, medical care is better and that means life expectancy is going up, my Father always said to look after yourself when your young and your body will look after you in older age. Wise words.

Happy health all.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Time

Time.

Time is our fickle master. You can never have too much and not enough of it all at once. That all depends on what side of the clock you stand. Is it behind you or out in front?

We live surrounded by a sea of seconds, minutes, hours or days although its a water you cannot drink.

Everything seems to be governed by time although any creative process is later defined by someone else’s interpretation. Good or bad nobody ever thinks of the time put in to create what they are judging. The time put in to hone crafts, to think, to theorise and dream. All of this revolves around the clock our lives run by.

Blink and it’s gone. Immerse yourself in something and again it’s gone. No matter what way we situate our minds time is never something we have enough of. Perhaps we should drink the wine, eat the foods and spend our lives with those we love. No matter what, time will take all of such things away. Morbid it is, for those who squander their time or perhaps inciting to those who don’t. A reminder that time will rule over all.

Time is our friend, our enemy and everything in between.