Sunday, March 1, 2015

What It Is – week ending 1 March [2015]

With apologies to Dave the Thune (as well as Mike Baron & Steve Rude).

Every day.  1000 words.  That’s the goal.

I believe I mentioned this in an earlier post, but I felt very strongly about my writing output last year.  I was on task far more often than not, and far more regularly than any year prior.  But this year, at least two months into it, I am even more productive than I was in 2014.  At this point last year, I believe I’d taken 9 days off from writing.  But 60 days into 2014, I’ve managed to log 59 days of writing, with over 64,000 total words for the year and two straight months of 30,000+ words.  This is good.  I’m also just about on track for story submissions as well.  Nine weeks in, I’ve sent stories off to 26 places, one shy of my goal of three a week.  But that’s easily made up.  And, once I’ve completed the first draft of this novel, I have a number of short stories I need to get to – for revisions, as well as ideas I need to get written – that will allow me to widen the scope of my submissions.  Onward and upward. 

The Monster of Florence, by Donald Preston & Mario Spezi. 
Oh.  My.  God.  The story of a vicious serial murderer in the hills of Florence, Italy, spanning from the early to mid-1960s up until 1985 (when the final killings occurred), the story is still alive today, as the true Monster has never been caught, though four men were arrested and convicted, at different times, for the crime.  The twists and turns in this story are unreal.  Botched investigations, allegations of planted evidence, insane theories pursued by investigators in order to fit the facts to the man they believe to be the murderer, which, upon the many convictions, lead to the disparate investigators’ promotions, at the expense of the truth and Florentines’ safety.  It’s riveting and chilling.  About two-thirds of the way through the book, where I’m at right now, the authors go to interview the man they believe to be the real killer – and the case they put forth is compelling.  He denies everything, but not without sharing a couple of facts that only bolster their theory.  If you enjoy true crime, you need to read this. 

I’ve been a fan of Matt Wagner’s Grendel for some time, but I’ve never done a proper read-through until now.  I’m about halfway through Wagner’s Grendel cycle, having just begun God and the Devil.  And though I appreciated what I read before, what I have discovered on this re-read is fascinating.  Not only do Wagner and his collaborators expand the narrative focus of Grendel immensely, the farther away from Devil by the Deed they get, but they also approach the storytelling of each arc differently, interweaving the approach with the themes being investigated within each storyling.  It’s impressive and compelling, and it spurred me to write a bit about it.  The introduction and the first part of those thoughts can be found at the links – or just below this post.  Look for more on Grendel soon.

And, if you enjoy the Oscars and the debate that surrounds these awards every year, you should check out the ITMODcast Oscar special.  It’s fantastic.  Not only do they look at this year’s awards, but they delve into past accolades and see where the academy got it right and where they got it wrong.   Entertaining and educational, for any film fans out there. 

As always, check out my friends – Brad& Matt and Don McMillan for their own weekly recaps on things comic-y and geeky, and we'll see what's what in seven.  


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