Tuesday, May 25, 2021



Creatives have answered the title question differently but, not surprisingly, some patterns that seem near universal emerge.

I have friends who say the hardest part is—

 *Just getting started (as in staring at an empty canvas)

*Muddling through the sagging middle (this one is close to universal)

*Finding how and where to end (A talented friend struggles with this)

*Revising beyond a superficial dusting (This requires input from others, IMO)

*Putting your work “out there” (Many creatives never do because it is. too. blasting. hard.)


But worthwhile things are often hard. So this is not a complaint, but a list of blessings.

©Grant Snider

Tuesday, May 18, 2021

Digital Life and Death


’Tis a truth, which should be universally acknowledged, that life and death on this earth does not parallel life and death in the digital realm. (Apologies to Jane Austen)


I have Facebook friends who passed away. Their Facebook pages and timelines still live. I have blogging friends I had followed whose blogs had died, but I happen to know the blog owners are very much alive.


Many of my posts on this blog are scheduled ahead. In the event that I leave this earth, posts will continue to appear for a time. The only hint that I’m no longer here would be the complete lack of comments, as I moderate all comments and will no longer be there to do so. (Hint: if you want to check my earthly pulse, just comment 😉)


On people search sites I found my parents and other dearly departed people continuing to age. Apparently, these sites, which make their fortunes collecting public data on all of us, can’t bother to scour records of death.


Strange worlds we live and die in; two parallel timelines that only partially intersect.

Tuesday, May 11, 2021

To Google or not to Google Oneself?


Aye, that is the question*

*(Maybe not THE question, but A question)


Alas, we use “google” as a verb now for “internet search.” There are other options, though I still use Google because it reigns supreme.


I have found that occasional googling (or Duck Duck Go-ing, Swiss Cow-ing, Gibiru-ing Bing-ing and more) can bring up some surprises about self. Hopefully they are nice surprises, but the question is whether it should be part of anyone’s digital hygiene practices.


I think at this day and age where so much of life’s connectivity is digital, it is healthy to look oneself up now and then. I know writers look up their published books. I recall some on a chat board saying they are stalking their own titles. Stalking suggests obsessional behavior. But doing a bi-annual search just in case something very wrong (ouch) or something very right (yay) is floating out there— is rather sensible.


But it is an awkward feeling, I confess. If you are creeped out by looking yourself up, just don’t. So far, I have found at least four nice surprises, (a review I was unaware of that is now quoted and linked to my website, a blogger’s review of one of my published articles, and more) and one not so happy thing, (a site purported to give personal info on anyone and everyone decided to confuse my age with my much-older DH.) But on the whole, I found what I expected to find. I’m not famous, so that is about what I anticipated.


Two friends, who insisted there couldn’t be anything about them on the Interwebs, were proven wrong. There is something somewhere. But if you don’t mind, don’t care— that’s fair. Don’t look. You don’t have to.


Like most things in life, I straddle the middle ground: no staking/haunting, not avoiding. Once or twice a year does it for me.


If you ever found real surprises while googling self, I’d love to hear about it. At the very least, it would make a good story.

*This^ actually happened to a writing friend

Tuesday, May 4, 2021

Mayday— or a Day in May


        My first post for this May, and the phrase “Mayday! Mayday!” rushed in.


So I followed it to its supposed origins, which I found interesting. Origins in common lingo often shine a light on historical events, and Mayday didn’t disappoint:


The Mayday call originated in the 1920s. A senior radio officer at Croydon Airport in London, Frederick Stanley Mockford, was the first to use this signal to indicate emergency situations. Mockford’s superior officers asked him to think of a word that would indicate distress and all pilots and ground staff would clearly understand during an emergency. As much of the traffic at London’s airport at that time was to and from Paris, Mockford proposed the expression “Mayday," derived from the French word “m’aider" that means “help me" and is a shortened form of “venez m’aider," which means “come and help me."

Which lead to the question of what distress signal preceding it, SOS, stood for.

Also interesting, and spiritual to boot:

SOS, short for “save our souls" sent by Morse code, predates the use of Mayday. In 1927, the International Radiotelegraph Convention adopted Mayday as the radiotelephone distress call in place of SOS.


Here’s wishing SOS-free and no Mayday this May. Have a great one 👍💗