Perhaps I could have made this into a “book review” – the essay is certainly lengthy enough to justify it – but I rarely have trouble keeping up with book reviews, while writing Tuesday’s blog posts can be more of a challenge. More pertinently, I don’t so much want to review Losing the War for you, as I do want to share my thoughts on this peculiar, rambling essay. It was something my dad first found and shared with me several years ago, and it somehow came up in recent conversation, so I decided to revisit it. If you haven’t read it before, you can find it here: Losing the War.
established a social media presence. Granted, that’s only through GoodReads, for the moment, but it’s a (painful) start. If you’re tired of reading my book reviews here on the site, you can also find them posted on GoodReads, along with a list of books I’m intending to read, and a progress bar for books I’m currently reading.
By now, you may have seen our post announcing that IGC Publishing will no longer be hosting advertisements, or at least noticed that advertisements are no longer appearing on the site. That for the most part doesn't affect the site's formatting, but it did mean that I needed to develop a different way to indicate a section or chapter break in our stories, since I had originally intended to use the advertisements like commercial breaks. So I broke out my limited graphic design skills, and attempted to create something suitable.
've gone through multiple thought iterations with regards to running advertisements on the site. Initially, I intended to set up a system where you could pay to download copies of my stories from the site. Then, I had the thought of setting it up so that advertisements interspersed in the stories could act like commercial breaks. I had all kinds of philosophical arguments against such an approach, since I would rather sell stories than personal data, but there were practical reasons that made that the course I chose for more than a year now.
This is my main solution when I'm struggling with a story and not sure where it's going to go next or what to write for a new scene. Usually, by the time that I return from a ten mile run, I've not only determined how I will solve whatever problem I was originally struggling with; I've also determined what will fill the several chapters or sequences, and it's often better than what I would have come up with just by sitting down at the keyboard and stewing over the text. Nor is this necessarily restricted to stories and writing, as I've used the same technique to help me develop solutions to all kinds of problems and stresses and challenges in my life: intellectual, personal, and practical. But that's beyond the scope of this post.
Don't worry: despite the title, this is not going to be a post of me complaining about something, or at least that's not how I would construe it (but then I wouldn't, would I?). Instead, I would like to begin with an observation, that observation being that humans are fundamentally lazy. Or, for those who prefer a positive spin to things (so many possible particle physics jokes there), humans are fundamentally efficient. Like nature, we are generally inclined to take the short term path of least resistance.
Everything is offensive to someone. I recall an incident when I held the door for someone following me into a room and was thence accused of "perpetuating an oppressive patriarchy," despite the fact that I had also just held the door for three other people of various descriptions. We can choose whether or not to be offended by something, which is why I'm rarely offended - it just isn't worth the effort most of the time. When you are able to look at things from a variety of perspectives, you can usually find perspectives from which a thing is offensive, and at least as many from which it is not. That is a matter of personal choice. Unfortunately, Dr. Seuss Enterprises has decided that the choice should rest with them, not readers.
Caesar's Commentaries are not tedious. They are not slow, or particularly difficult to read, and they certainly are not short on action. Written by Caesar himself, they demonstrate a side of the man that is rarely emphasized in the numerous biographies and histories centered around him. He is famous for his skill as a general and for his conquests, but he was also a brilliant politician, an adept author, and a strikingly intelligent figure.
Despite the fact that I run a website, and encourage people to share said website on social media platforms and with their friends, families, and enemies, I personally live under a bit of a digital rock. Though that's really an understatement - it's probably a digital boulder - but I couldn't resist putting in that subtle "bit" pun. Even though I know that engaging on social media is among the best ways for me to continue growing the audience for IGC Publishing, I just haven't been able to bring myself to do it.
I've noticed something about my writing recently, a struggle that I've been having but have not fully acknowledged. The problem is this: I'm too focused on the form of the words on the page.