Suddenly

Everybody experiences sudden or abrupt things happening every day. Let’s say you’re at MLB ballgame and you see the pitch going towards the batter and suddenly it’s stopped. How? A bird flew right into it. This actually happened when “Big Unit” Randy Johnson was pitching for Arizona years ago.

Johnson was known for his 100 MPH fastball and the incident abruptly paused the game. Things occur almost constantly with sudden starts or ends. The adage all good things must come to an end validates this phenomenon.

It no sooner began and it’s over. Let me know an adage that you like.

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Life, legacy and every day living

As a child time moves so slowly that boredom is an everyday affair. Most of us got into mischief because we had nothing else to do. Most of our parents began to find ways to channel our pent-up energy by not only finding things to do but also a list of chores. And it begins.

After our teens and we transform into adults. Not only has boredom vanished but we cannot seem to find enough time in a day to do what needs to be done. Between the interests, we carved out of our time we suddenly have jobs that take up more than a third of our entire day.

Those of us that took to blogging begin to find it difficult to carve out the time to devote to our craft. Not to be mistaken for witchcraft although sometimes that blank screen seems to cast a spell on you. Blogging and writing in general typically require you to carve out your own niche to establish your legacy.

Remember your parents telling you way back when that time speeds up? Now you wish they were wrong as years go by like months. Pink Floyd caught it with the song Time. How are you utilizing your time?

Lopsided news from networks

Growing up everybody, for the most part, trusted and believed what you read, heard or saw in the news. Then there was a trust and respect that was earned by journalists and reporters for most of us it was the only source and contact with the outside world. Then things evolved as TV brought us live video from the Vietnam War and from there we’ve been on the technology express.

Now we get breaking news breaks online, we hear about a lot of major events only moments after it happens. As a result for the past ten years or more public trust in the traditional news sources has dwindled. “Public trust in traditional media has fallen to an all-time low as people increasingly favor their friends and contacts on the internet as sources of news and truth”, according to Financial Times earlier this year.

Case in point goes back to the 2016 Presidential election where the media’s reports were the other candidate won the election. The media along with the other party blamed the loss on Russian interference. Mainstream media and celebrities spent a shocking 75 percent of their time since then discussing Russian/Trump collusion theory.

It has now been proven to not only be false but the FBI has revealed that President Obama and Hillary are guilty of Russian collusion. Surprisingly the media hasn’t mentioned this news except for a minute of time and print. Trust is a difficult thing. The saying “fool me once shame on you fool me twice shame on me” is evident. What does the future hold for the networks?

Setting a scene

Television and movies directors spend a great deal of time in the setting of a scene.  Of course, scenes vary from the tame and docile to the exciting and frantic spectrums. It’s not uncommon for the opening scene in a television show or a movie to start out peaceful and quiet. But particularly today’s action movies start out with fast-paced conflict and struggles. Box office numbers revealed that high-speed action captures the audience early on and holds their attention.

The same principles apply to posting on the internet. Sure most everybody likes the classic piano playing cat video but thrilling action catches the viewers attention. Does your story need fast-action appeal for a kickstart? That is up to you and whether the action fits in with your storyline.

As the writer only you know how and where the scenes play out in your production. Is a rock-n-roll beginning the best way to begin your story? Then again perhaps your storyline is more of a waltz or something that builds a crescendo into a fever pitch. Whatever your theme is, be sure to use the appropriate direction as the director.

Very interesting

When you find something is of great interest you continue to observe or read on. If it catches your eye, peaks your interest you are compelled to forge on. As a writer, it’s your key to hold the reader’s interest or you inevitably will lose them as they move on to something else.

Depending on your subject say perhaps current events an insiders perspective could turn some heads. Celebrity interviews are always a hit. For most of us, celebrity interviews are unattainable. Something that most reporters have shied away from in recent years is human interest stories.

I know growing up TV and newspapers did a lot of special interest stories especially the smaller local ones. The interest is the human, personal factor it’s something we can all relate to. If it interests you chances are it will be of interest to someone else but of course, you can never please all of the people all of the time.

Quill to parchment

The quill to parchment method of writing was used for centuries, no for two millennia with paper finally replacing parchment as the writing surface. Although it is reported that paper was invented in China about 105 AD made of bark, fibers of rags, and hemp. Before the quill, the writing instrument was the reed pen who’s origin was about 400 BC. Both were dipped into ink to write with, although the quill was much more durable made of a feather that could be cut down to sharpen it for extended use much like a pencil.

The pen and paper obviously are still used but is slowly being phased out with tablets and computers as the writer’s choice. It should be mentioned that the quill and reed pen utilized capillary action where ink was drawn up into the instrument and slowly released as you wrote on the surface. You think there’s a problem with modern fountain pens there was no comparison for an entire document could be destroyed by a pause with ink flowing and/or dripping across your work.

Progress has yielded convenience and efficiency to our fingertips. We have it so easy compared to our ancestors and still, some of us balk at sending a relative so much as an email.  Imagine how hard that letter would have been with a quill and parchment. The mind can only imagine what the future has in store for later generations as a means to communicate. Telepathy?

Portion of life

For most people, if you look at a portion of their life that they enjoyed most it would be their vacations. Many of us live for the next vacation, it can’t come soon enough. Believe it or not, a good percentage of Americans can’t seem to find the time or have the means to take vacations. Because it’s a time we enjoy most it seems it should be a priority and if you can’t find the means at least you could take a day trip to enjoy nature and life.

Nearly two years ago I had a portion of the book I’ve been writing for years published in an international literary magazine called AOIS21 Media. Since then the road is like this. I have the bulk of the manuscript ready but every few days I work on it refining, changing, rearranging to make it ready to present to a publisher. I’ve also spent countless hours reading and listening to e-book publishers and speaking with some to get their advice on publishing. An arduous task at best.

Essentially this work of the heart has taken a portion of my life. I’m amazed by authors like James Patterson, one of my favorites, that releases books every couple months it seems.  I know he has a template or a formula which he starts from so it’s not as difficult as a brand new creation.

My wife and I are very fond of vacations though we get so tied up in life that there are way too many years when we skipped a vacation. At least when we didn’t find time for an actual vacation we’ve at least taken a getaway weekend to regain our sanity and remember how to breathe. That’s the key, remember how to breathe its an essential ingredient for living.

The media has lost its way

Yellow Journalism is a term that was first coined during the famous newspaper wars between William Randolph Hearst and Joseph Pulitzer II. Pulitzer’s paper the New York World and Hearst’s New York Journal changed the content of newspapers adding more sensationalized stories and increasing the use of drawings and cartoons. Sound familiar now?

Pulitzer began to publish a cartoon of his own that he titled “The Yellow Kid” in 1896. The cartoon became one of many objects fought over between Hearst and Pulitzer during their rivalry. Hearst later took R.F. Outcault the creator of the cartoon from Pulitzer the news was over-dramatized and altered to fit story ideas that publishers and editors thought would sell the most papers and stir the most interest for the public so that “Newsies” could sell more papers on street corners.

During the Spanish-American War Hearst was the first newspaper to station a team of reporters in Cuba to monitor the events happening there. When a reporter sent a telegram telling Hearst that there was not much going on there, Hearst replied with his famous telegram,”You furnish the pictures and I’ll furnish the war.” What our networks are doing today is no different.

Media needs to be objective, accountable, and responsible in their reporting. Actor Denzel Washington, an actual victim of the now labeled “fake news” lie, aimed his critical eye at the mainstream media last month and cited them as purveyors of today’s untruths. He said, “If you don’t read the newspaper, you’re uninformed. If you do read it, you’re misinformed. In our society, now it’s just first who cares, get it out there. We don’t care who it hurts. We don’t care who we destroy. We don’t care if it’s true. Just say it, sell it. Anything you practice you’ll get good at; including BS.”

My personal belief is perhaps Walter Cronkite was one of the last great reporters. He was far more objective than journalists today. Here in Arizona, we have the ASU Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and mass communication. I can’t say how objective they are but I hope instructors have open minds. Musically speaking, there’s a song by En Vogue called Free your mind that does an excellent job of summing up the solution to our media and race relations this country faces. “Free your mind and the rest will follow, be color blind don’t be so shallow, free your mind and the rest will follow.” The best advice we could receive to date.

Daily Post

Dylan anything but artificial

How do you describe the first songwriter to win a Nobel Prize in literature? Most any word but artificial will suffice. The media is calling him “impolite and arrogant” for going into hiding after receiving the award.  Those in the media taking this attitude apparently don’t know Bob Dylan. He spent the early part of his career behind the scenes writing songs for many other recording artists. To me, it comes as no surprise for him to react this way.

I was but a kid when Dylan, 75 was already mastering his art. One of his best-renowned work is “Blowing in the wind” made famous by Peter, Paul and Mary in 1963. One of my personal favorites was recorded by Jimi Hendrix and also recorded by Dylan “All along the watchtower”. Dylan wrote a number of songs, acting as the voice of a generation. He wrote for himself and for artists leading the civil rights and anti-war movements like “The times they are a changin”. Another group that spoke for the baby boomer generation was the Beatles but they didn’t stay with us like Dylan.

Dylan is for real. He’s written songs for numerous movies like “Knockin on Heaven’s Door” in the film “Pat Garrett & Billy The Kid”. The Nobel prize will be officially bestowed to Dylan Dec. 10 in Stockholm; it only adds to his very long string of awards. The Daily Post Artificial

How do you get over being stumped?

Front tree
Was my beautiful mesquite showpiece until a storm made a stump of it

We all get stumped or baffled one time or another. The issue is what do you do to get past it?  Of course the solutions will vary widely depending on the given situation. When you run across something you’ve never seen before and you have the time you can get by with a little help from your friends. Let’s say you literally find yourself with a stump in your front yard and you’ve never encountered it before. Chances are someone you know has an answer.

When you’re stumped writing on a subject or even finding time to write as I have you may look to friends for an answer or buckle down and get your answer yourself. Looking for an answer from others may go out as a plea for help- like this. How many of you are posting your blog as often as you originally intended? I’ll be honest, I thought I’d be posting more often than once a week or every ten days. Those of you that have stayed the course can you share your secret? Life has happened on me and it also held back the completing of my book on time.

I’ve been stumped much like my poor tree pictured above. I guess I haven’t had the discipline to “get er done” but I have to do so many other things to get by. Don’t you wish you had the luxury of just focusing on your writing like King or Patterson? Any way you cut it, even if it keeps you hanging on;  you have to get past it, make the best of it and carry on my wayward son.

<a href=”https://dailypost.wordpress.com/prompts/stump/”>Stump</a&gt;