[750words] Story Ideas

Burning paper money, from Ching Bing
Burning paper money, from Ching Bing

The most intoxicating part of a writing project for me is usually the ideas process. This is also the part that tells me whether or not the book is ever going to be sold, because it shows how attached I am to the words I intend to put out.

I’ve had ideas sit in my head for years. Ideas that come and go within a few days or weeks. The difference between them is how intense these ideas are. Continue reading

750 words: A long ramble?


Here, cute pic before you click on wall of text below

So, testing this for the first time. I kind of regret not signing up for 750words.com before this. Should have done it a long time ago, but I thought that daily word counts were not a thing that I could do. Shows what I know, huh? Now that I’ve resorted to this, I have nothing more to do than to keep doing it. :D

On a fun note, this service is free for the first 30 days, then after that you have to pay USD5 a month to keep using the site. Usually I avoid subscription services like the plague, but this site has a few gamification and data features that interests me (which reminds me I need to look up that Big Data course on Google).

There’s badges here! As in badges that you get when you sign up, when you complete achievements, and so forth. They also pull your IP and display the weather it was when you were writing; I find this quite amusing and would probably be a good way for me to gauge further down the road what keeps me writing and what probably keeps me in bed.

Now, for the features that caught my eye; this site also has stats on when you write, your speed, the words you use, etc etc etc, all stuff that I usually find very useful. These stats are kind of hard to collect though, and even harder to display meaningfully (aka I am too lazy to see if the scripts for this exist). They also have monthly and weekly stats, which are far more useful to me.

Yes, I’m using this site as a way to keep myself writing. 750 words, I think, is a pretty hefty chunk to write. It’s three pages long, which, for a blog, is pretty lengthy. But I think it might work, and since they’re talking about writing a little bit every day, I think it’s a good habit to start again. Continue reading

Reading list!

The Count Of Thebes

So one of the things I kinda resolved to do this year was to make my way through my pile of unread books. I’ve read (in no particular order):

  • Dragonfly Falling by Adrian Tchaikovsky
  • The Great Magician by Christian Jacq
  • Dead Man’s Drive by Michael Panush – Sponsored review; I received a copy of this and am going to write a fuller one later
  • Ico – Castle in the Mist by Miyuki Miyabe (RM8 was a steal at the Big Bad Wolf Sale!)
  • Assassin’s Creed: Forsaken by Oliver Bowden (I have issues with his writing style)
  • A Memory of Light by Brandon Sanderson and Robert Jordan (it finally ended but man what an ending. A bit peeved by it, to be honest. Another hardcover steal too!)

Just finished Ico, so I’m taking a quick break before I continue. I might be starting on Alternative Histories soon OR Playing That Yaoi Game I Bought At CF That I Need To Rip. It’s… NFSW apparently, but the artwork looks gorgeous.

2 guys but 24 endings WHAT INSANITY IS THIS?

Go go go

10KM Medal from PBIM 2013.
10KM Medal from PBIM 2013.

Pull the trigger slam the door
Pick up the pace, it’s time to go
Penang Bridge just you wait
Half Marathon here I come!

Now if only the bloody thing will open for registration. ;_;

[006] Breaking Away

Candlelight shot from my own Z1 Compact
Candlelight shot from my own Z1 Compact

Alice opened her eyes.

The first thing she saw was the plain walls of her room. Then there were whispers, coming from the hall. She laid there for a little while, trying to discern what it was that had awakened her. A soft purple glow bathed her room, with the occasional car going down the road outside her house.

Alice blinked. The whispers and the light indicated it was probably dawn, so she still had some hours to go before she actually needed to be up. Then it hit her.

“I closed the curtains,” she thought, turning to her side.

The window and curtains were open. As she got up to scream, a dark figure crossed the room and put his hand over mouth, forcing her back onto the bed. Alice fought him, her screams muffled, but he pinned her harder and brought his face close to hers. She found herself freezing from pure terror.

The man’s irises were red. Bright, blood, shining red. As Alice stared wide-eyed at him, he smiled coldly, revealing bright, sharp teeth. She could smell brimstone on him. A cold feeling settled in her stomach as she realised what he was.

“Now, no screams?” he spoke in a deep, bass voice. She nodded and he removed his hand from her mouth.

“How…” the words choked in her throat as she stammered out of terror, “How… how may I serve you, Great One?”

“We have work for thee, child. You remember the bargain?”

“Yes, but my bro…”

“Did you not see the evidence for yourself?”

“Yes, but I thought…”

“Will you honour your bargain?” the way he asked the question warned Alice.

“I will honour the bargain,” she whispered.

“Good. Then come. We leave now.”

“But my brother…”

“Do not worry, child. We will honour our part of the bargain,” he smiled evilly.

With that, she got out of her bed and took his hand.

“Goodbye,” she whispered.

~~~~~~

This was significantly much harder to write than I expected. There was of course, the usual constraints; work, life, exercise.

The truth is, I wasn’t quite sure if I could have written this.

Things falling away. Trying to break out of old patterns. Resisting the urge to write passive aggressive sentences like this one.

I am a slave to words.

Writing is a compulsion, I think I once said to someone. I can’t live without writing. Or without reading. Someone else also once said that writing was a form of escapism. A world where we become powerful instead of letting reality hold us back.

Is reality so mundane that we must seek to escape it?

I don’t know about you, but yes.

That’s not to say my reality’s bad. I’m blessed, because I have a job I like, colleagues who make me feel grateful for being employed with them, a caring if overprotective family, friends who love me more than I deserve, and I want for nothing in Maslow’s Hierachy (we’re not talking self-actualisation here, by the way).

So if reality is so great, why do I find myself retreating into my written words? Why do I find myself reading old stories, thinking up new scenarios, and building new worlds?

Because it’s where I can simply be.

Matthew 4:4 says, “Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.’”

There’s a simple joy and beauty in words. On one hand, some may argue they are nothing more than lines drawn together. On the other hand, these lines, when drawn together, convey meaning, ideas and experiences to the reader, opening their minds to an alternate present that can only be experienced.

When I was younger, my aunt once allowed me to lead the reading for one of the family prayer sessions. After the prayer session was over, she told me, “You are reading it like a storybook. Don’t read it like that again.”

I ignored her. In my mind, words take on a literal new sensation, a literal new experience. Each word, written, has a tone. I hear them in my mind as though they’re being spoken, as though they’re dancing, as though there’s an actual sensory pleasure attached to them.

Am I seduced by the beauty of words? Completely.

As to whether I am obsessed about them, no I don’t think so. At least not in the way most people assume. It’s one of the reasons why when I write something for someone else, I find it very hard to get offended if they ask me to write it in another way (note: this does NOT apply to grammar, those still bring out shieldmaiden in me).

Words are words. They are tools. Beautiful, wonderful tools, but tools nonetheless. I love how they feel at my fingers, in my mind, through my ears, but words are simply words. They are a means, a platform, a bridge.

Now the ideas they convey… that’s another matter entirely.

I suppose this isn’t about breaking away after all.

This entry was written for the 100 Themes Challenge. For the full list, click here.

[Copywriter's Chronicles] Cafe

Me: I’m going for Nescafe, anyone want anything?
Ian: *after a brief silence* Where is this Fondle Cafe?
Office: *crickets*

[Review] CooperVision BioMedics 1 Day Toric

Disclaimer: I received free trial Coopervision contact lenses in return for writing this review. However, all opinion and experience stated below are mine, except for lens specifications.

Lens specs:
Name: Biomedics 1 day Extra Toric
Type: Daily Disposables
Comfort level: TOO DAMN HIGH
Recommended for: Those who have astigmatism

3 days with it.

That’s all it took for me to fall in love with these contact lenses.

Well, no, it was faster than that.

3 minutes. Not kidding.

I got them on a Thursday and put them in on a Friday.

The difference. Man, the difference!

I literally went from being almost blind to sharp vision in less than 2 minutes. It took my eyes that long to adjust, and when I could see again, it was amazing! Did I mention that these contact lenses were comfy? I couldn’t really feel or see them while they were in.

So I wore them to a client meeting where my client actually asked me if I got enough sleep. My eyebags are usually hidden in the shadow under my eyes by my glasses. It’s not something you can see easily if I was wearing glasses. ;p

The rest of the day was spent getting used to the fact that I had almost perfect vision, except for the hours I spent in front of a computer screen. The fonts were a bit blurry, but some eye drops and better rest took care of that.

The brochure says the contacts are good up to 11 hours, but I’ve worn them for almost 14 hours with no side effects. However, your mileage can and will probably vary. I’ve had no bad experience with them in my eyes, but there are some things you WILL want to know:

  • It is ridiculously easy to put these things in.
    Takes me less than a minute for my left and maybe slightly over for my right (the right side’s a bit weird). Never had an issue putting them in, except for that one time I managed to flip the lens the wrong way ^^;
  • The lenses are really soft!
    If you’re forgetful, please please please set a reminder to tell yourself to take the lenses out of your eyes. The lenses are so comfortable and natural that I had to remind myself that this “sharpness” is not natural for me (the irony!)
  • Taking them out CAN be a bitch
    I chalk this up to my own inexperience rather than the lenses themselves. Remember what I said about the lenses being comfortable? They’re quite soft and pliable, which means removal can be difficult. I found it easier to take the lens out of my left eye before attempting my right. For the latter, I slid it down to the edge of my eye before attempting to pinch them out. Eyedrops may make the process easier for you.

So do I recommend these lenses? HIGHLY. I’m actually contemplating getting a full box of my own when my trial runs out. They’re the first contact lens brand I’ve worn that makes going without glasses a real possibility and not a “one-off” annual thing I do for vanity’s sake.

That said, don’t take my word for it. Get your 5-day trial lenses here! Let me know how it goes for you. ;)

[Copywriter's Chronicles] I was born with it!

The Godfather: I didn’t ask for a dick!
The Godfather: I was born with it!**

Ian: *ded of laughter*

** In reference to the “souvenirs” the Wind Goddess brought back from Taiwan. It’s under the cut, btw.

Edited:

JPY: I came here just to collect my penis. I got a black dick!

Son of edit:

Me: Just one week of relative peace, and then…
The Wind Goddess: Penis…?

Continue reading

New phone!

The new Xperia Z1 Compact, ordered from Storekini.
The new Xperia Z1 Compact, ordered from Storekini.

Initial review of Xperia Z1 Compact: She’s fast and light. Larger than Joel but very light, which kinda worries me. Plus point: BABY HAS A SLOT FOR DECO! I now need to find casing.

Temporary name is Kitsune. I might call her something else. In fact I want to, but no name suggests. She’s protesting against me calling her Tsun, because she argues the micro-sim idiocy was my doing, not hers (I was trying to insert it upside down).

The name Freiderike aka Idike will fit her JUST fine. :D