A Word on Technology

The_iOS_family_pile_(2012)_60s

Contrary to what some people may believe, I like technology.  I love having access to all sort of information at all times of the day.  I even like playing the little games and things.  Not only that, it is a great tool for writers, builders and dreamers…

BUT, I can live without it.

I presently do not have a cell phone, or iPad, or Reader or whatever, and I’m surviving just fine, thanks.  In fact, when I leave home I’m not constantly worried about what I’m missing.

And before anyone says, “well, you just don’t understand,” I used to have two devices.  One for work, and one for personal (I worked for the government and decided it wasn’t right to have anything personal going through a government system).   On the business side it was my job to know everything that was going on pretty well all the time…and I loved it!

When I moved to the U.S., I gave both devices up – partly because I no longer had the same job (work device) and partly financial reasons (personal device).  Let me tell you, it was utter heartbreak for me at that time when I had to let them go – and just like any other addiction – I periodically dream about them even now.

But over time, I learned to appreciate life without them.  There have even been periods over the last few years where the power has gone out here for days on end, and I can live without the internet.  Yes, it’s an annoyance, but I am not completely lost without it and can survive quite happily.

I am not a Luddite, but I do see the value in limiting one’s personal use of electronics.

It’s the same with television.  I was a junky.  But now, I don’t have cable, or satellite, or use Netflix.  And because of that, my tastes have changed.  That doesn’t mean I don’t watch any television.  It just means I’ve become more discerning on what I’m willing to tolerate.

Let me tell you, I can’t stomach too much gore anymore – at one time I was so desensitized it rarely phased me…but even so, I still go to movies and periodically check out new (or old) shows to see if they appeal to me.

But even though I feel my quality of life is better for not being controlled by every new piece of tech that surfaces, at the end of the day, I do sometimes feel like Guy Montag from Ray Bradbury’s Farenheit 451, where because you aren’t a part of the technology-absorbed world, you are hunted down for being abnormal…when really, living without its constant chatter is the most normal thing of all.


Image Credit:  the iOS family pile (2012) (modified) via (CC BY 2.0)

Is Being a Prolific Author Painful?

Writer’s Block is a wonderful catch-all excuse for all manner of authorial sin.  I often struggle with it when deciding what to write for my column.  When writing a piece on current events or politics it needs to be relevant and interesting, not just a column written because I needed something to fill the space that week (a pet peeve of mine when perusing the major news sites).

But with the idea of struggling with writer’s block in mind, I’ve often wondered how the prolific authors feel.

“Terry Pratchett is one of the most popular authors writing today.  He lives behind a keyboard in Wiltshire and says he ‘doesn’t want to get a life, because it feels as though he’s trying to live three already’.”

~ excerpt from the bio in Terry Pratchett’s works published by Corgi Books

Terry Pratchett, for example, my favourite current author…  Now, I’m sure he gets writer’s block occasionally (I don’t think it’s something that any author can opt-out of), but for how prolific a writer he is it makes me wonder: is being so prolific painful?

I often find myself wishing I had more ideas, but when I think about all those stories being stuck in your head, scrambling to get out all at once, stepping on each other’s toes…it’s kind of mind-boggling.  I can honestly say that at times I’ve been frustrated with wanting to say so much, and as a result just not being able to say anything at all.

So for the author – whose livelihood depends on it – is it actually a painful experience to have so many ideas clambering about?  Or is it just the price tag for having been gifted with a vast imagination?

This is Me Being a Writer

“If you wish to be a writer, write.” ~ Epictetus

Up to now I’ve avoided writing a personal blog because it’s too much like a private journal, and – being the introvert that I am – I’ve felt neither comfortable nor inclined to share my inner-most workings with the world.  However, I want to be a writer…or, at the very least, the author of a few cool stories I’ve dreamt up; I’ve already started the leg-work, but I’ve discovered my writing confidence needs a bit of a boost…

…so here I will start to write in (theoretical) earnest.

(And, as I’m a crochet artist, we’ll see some of my yarn-y creations along the way…if nothing else it will help add a little colour to my page).

Note to Self: Blogger Beware…

Too easily blogs can become overly self-indulgent and pretentious, and I certainly don’t wish to be perceived as either.  And although I am a bit of an idealist myself (with a cynical undercurrent), it is my goal to avoid channeling my angst-y fourteen-year-old self.  You know who I’m talking about…the one who thinks you’re imparting a deep worldly wisdom that no-one else has truly put their mind to, all the while using even bigger words in an effort to get people to take you seriously.  Yeah…that one.  Although she may be well-meaning, it’s hard to take her seriously.

With that in mind, it’s time to get things underway…

This is me being a writer!