Horror Writing.

H.P. Lovecraft started his writing process by defining the emotion he was going after. Then drafting until he would illicit that feeling his subjects..ERH..um.. readers. But H.P. Was a heavy plotter.

Stephen King started with a concept and built around it until it was horrifying. And if he failed in giving the scene the sense of horror intended he would go to the extremes of gross to make the scene at least uncomfortable giving it a more horrifying weight in the readers memory as they would be unnerved to recall such passages. Mr. King was a pantser and started with a concept and characters then followed them through the plot as needed to write his book.

I think that when telling a horror story whether on film or the page. You should at least keep in mind the types of and stages of horror.

Unknown, Uncanny, Unstoppable

are at least three of the most common.

Unknown

is the easiest to do right because it is the most commonly done wrong. Darkness itself is not scary, it’s when we can see or hear or feel the edges of what lies in the darkness that begins to press the panic button. It’s when a shadow’s fold over themselves in the corner of the room to make the outline of death himself patiently waiting without breathe for your eyes to close here in this world be you are claimed to his. It’s the darkness of space where stars no longer grow but the eyes see a tint of something else blocking the depths from truly being seen. It’s the shifting at the bottom of a lake, past the searcher’s reflection and the clear sky waters that refuse to let the Autumn clouds above take shape as easily as they do in the sky because something is disturbing the water’s hold on them.

When starting with the Unknown each time it appears it must become more defined, otherwise the subject will place their guard between the satisfaction of knowing and the terror of finding out. The most common mistake is going from 10% reveal to 100% reveal before the third act. The audience expects to find out slowly, manage their expectations against the needs of your story.

Examples:

Friday the 13th

IT by Stephan King

Uncanny

is when something is not quite right. I’d venture that in cinematography this is used by accident and because of form rather than by a deliberate attempt to unnerve the audience.

The best examples are often dolls, painting, ghosts because they are so common and illicit uncanny speculation since they are suppose to fit within a box but changing small details between scenes or in scenes makes them uncanny.

Inanimate objects that move when the viewer isn’t viewing them directly create the start of uncanny horror. “Julee, now three, was about to have her baby sister sharing her room. The sweetest and nicest child according to the neighborhood girls who babysat on our monthly night out. We had set up the crib in the space that was formerly her “High” tea area, where she held here tea parties, passively she may have been throwing us signs that she was upset but she was very outspoken and happy. All the dolls and animals that she gathered around her table were now leaning up against as the wall as if in time-out, all except her porcelain kamacha doll her favorite. She would sit on the edge of Julee’s bed watching the other dolls. Julee was nothing but happy when we talked about her sister coming out of my belly and home soon.”

Ghosts are often given descriptions and visages that would make them human but one detail is wrong. “It may have been they open window but the temperature had fallen and the room was now cold enough to start my shivers. Even over a boiling pot of stew I feel a draft when she walks in the room. Except for a floorboard creak her feet never fall hard enough to hit the ground with sound. “AS A Lady should..” god I’ll be hearing that for the rest of my living days.”

You can start on either side of the Uncanny valley but you must slowly move away from your starting position to build a sense of progression. Dolls with dead eyes and human hair must become moving, talking, demons with soft flesh beating under their immobile outer shell. Ghosts can start as whispers and wind and become the outstretched hand clutching at it’s victim with intend to drag them through the looking glass OR Ghosts can start as people who drift further from humanity as the story unfolds, giving up breathe by never moving their chest, staring off into thought for inhuman stretches, translucency, transparency, incorporeal. The longer something remains in the exact definition as it’s starting point the more familiar that thing becomes and fear begins to remove itself.

Unstoppable

is the pretty clear as in being self defined BUT it does not mean indestructible. There must be hope however small that it can be stopped removing that hope creates certainty and certainty is the enemy of horror. If your monster has eaten a grenade explosion and hasn’t even lost a tooth then his immortality is certain.

A cockroach can be crushed and defeated, a thousand is a challenge, a million is a certainty.

A lumbering zombie can be outsmarted, outmaneuvered, or defeated with brawn. You can out run a zombie but you can’t run forever and while you rest your fragile warm body more gather outside waiting for you meet another demand be it food or fresh air.

Death will come for you. The hope is not today or until the end of your earthly works but that is never a guarantee. You have illusion and hope that your choices have some impact on whether he knocks tomorrow or sixty years from now, eat healthy, avoid stress, go to the doctor all of these are well and good but they do not still the reapers hand forever.

I just want to wrap this up with how Friday the 13th uses all three of these to great effect. But when watching a good example its hard to see why it is good. As an artist you’ll learn more/faster from the mistakes you make and the mistakes of others than from works without mistakes.

With love and hopefully better dreams than me,

HngyHngyHppo

Manufacturing Credibility

Credibility is defined as the quality of being trusted and believed in.

But it is not the same as being true.

Who is more credible on the subject of writing?

The college professor who has published in scholarly journals

OR

The New York Times best selling author

The rational would say that it depends on the advice or the subject. The emotional will indicate that it depends on their proximity and relationship to the subject.

R: The professor specializes in Russian Long form and Eastern European poetry, so as long as that is the realm we are discussing then they are more credible than The NYT bestseller H.K. Rowling but on the subject of YA or scholastic fiction Rowling’s is the more creditable source.

E: I loved the Harry Potter books and they inspired my own journey into writing fan fiction then novels, H.K. Rowling’s is the more creditable source. But my teacher has shown me the finer points of the finer technical points of long form novels even if they were written by some Russian ages ago.

The answer I’ve been trying to find is just how does one manufacture “Credibility”

I know it’s been done before and I’ve seen it done a few different ways.

The first is

“FOAF”

or friend of a friend

the poem “Ozymandias”, Plato’s description of the fall of Atlantis, Star Wars’ opening crawl.

Each use this with great effect to provide a creditable foundation.

It is thought (incorrectly) that because a story is removed by time, space, and even told third hand that it becomes less creditable but there is a blind spot in our psyche’s in the factor of three.

“I met a traveler(1) from an antique land(2).

Who said(3):…”

Ozymandias

In Plato’s Dialogues Plato(1) writes that Socrates(2) called three men to meet him. Socrates(2) asked the men about Atlantis Critias(3,) told them of a story he heard from his grandfather(1A) who heard from the lawgiver Solon(2A) who brought tales from Egypt(3A) about Atlantis.

Plato uses the FOAF technique twice. First to give himself credibility (that this meeting happened and these things were said) then again to give the speaker Critias credibility (that the city/country of Atlantis was indeed a real place).

For the rational this is too far removed to be trusted, but for the emotional with ties/respect for Socrates this is only one use of FOAF and likely creditable.

And of course Star Wars opens with

“A long(1) time ago in a galaxy far(2), far(3) away.”

Each modifier here adds distance and with FOAF gives enough credibility to narrative about to crawl across the screen before the star destroyer appears.

Now of course it’s just a fairy tale nod.

“Once upon a time(1), in a kingdom far(2), far(3) away.”

but with less modifiers the story’s required suspension of disbelief is at jeopardy from over scrutiny of the audience. With more modifiers like Plato’s Dialogues the relevance to the target is called into question and the information can be judged objectively on it’s merits.

“A long(1), long(2), like really long(3) time ago, in a far(4) away place, like further(5) than you’ve ever been before in your life far(6).”

This preface will be ignored and the story will have to stand on it’s own merits

Or

“A while(1) back, a few(2) towns from here.”

This story can be investigated. It’s too recent and too close someone else would need to corroborate that the story is true.

The Second Method of manufacturing creditably is through association. This is target specific and what gives you credibility with one group may make you worth skepticism from another.

Is the Professor from Oxford, Harvard, Yale, the ivy league, Any-town College, or Community College.

Those I’ve met who’ve topped out at a High School diploma provide less credibility the higher up the Academic ladder of Prestige one has climbed. But for those with less than a High School Diploma or more the higher up on Mount Olympus one has climbed and degrees authority from the more credible they are.

Is the best selling author recognized by the New York Times, Publishers Weekly, Goodreads, or Amazon.

The NYT list is a curated list and lends itself to a higher amount of credibility to those outside the publishing industry. Publishers Weekly list is mostly data driven and objective but there are clear cases of advertisers (cough Disney, big 5) consistently placing high even when there numbers may* not be reflected by Amazon’s sales numbers of the same titles. But Amazon has many different categories and in order to have a best seller author’s may have in the past incorrectly categorized their works and personally bought just a dozen copies to claim the top spot and become a number one best seller. Which is why it ranks lowest in credibility even if the top spot was truly earned for a hard category like Fantasy or Romance, it’s impossible to tell those Amazon bestsellers from Fictional Johnny who listed his fantasy novel under Contemporary Fiction.

-IMPORTANT Aside-

Amazon is currently testing Amazon Author Rank as a replacement for their individual category best selling lists. Which means that going forward if the system will be much harder to game but the damage to their reputation will be persistent. This is a good thing for Amazon’s reputation but a bad thing for upcoming Authors who are now competing in the back pages of for potential readers attention. It means that J.K. Rowling will be the Most Popular Fantasy Author even if she never writes another book in here life. Her work will rank at the top spot for decades to come because if this is how readers are introduced to the fantasy section they may just start from the top and give her eight points over her nearest competitor. Sad times really as independent authors job to get notice just got much harder.

-Aside over-

The last method I’ve found is introduction and vouching.

“Have you met my friend Jane she is a classically trained Pianist.”

Now it doesn’t matter if any of that is true. It doesn’t matter if my and the Target are friends. All that matters is someone has vouched for Jane and her credibility. Even If I am a known liar and Jane looks disheveled and perhaps homeless. What matters is the Jane’s credibility is TWO v. ONE. And the target’s resistance to the group is all that stands in the way of Jane being the an authority of whether Handel’s Messiah can be played with only the left handle.

This is credibility through group authority. Essentially the more people you have one your side the more credible you are. A tactic of politics, Head cheerleaders, and Ceo’s who have more than one assist in entourage. The more people eyes nodding in agreement the higher the credibility of the speaker.

Did you hire a cameraman to follow you around, How about a whole camera crew.

Those are the method’s I’ve learned about Manufacturing Credibility.

TL;DR

I heard it from a friend of a friend that this is true.

As a Harvard professor: “this is true.”

“Meet Jane she’s an authority on the subject and she says that this is true.”

but none of these are in themselves true though they are highly credible.

With love,

HngyHngyHppo

How to Have a Successful Self-Employed Day

Simple: You decide before the day whether it’s going to be a success or not

Then

at the end of the day decide whether or not it was successful.

Simple?

-NO

Truth is it is very hard to judge yourself whether the day was successful. Whatever your field, their will be landmines.

I’ll tell you about mine-field then boil down that experience and hopefully it will help you flip your houses, sell your Amway, or make sweet vapor-wave beats like Fwenzy.

I am a writer, publisher, marketer, manager, blogger, husband, nutrition enthusiast, philosopher, game theorist, mechanic and a video game addict.

I can’t do all of these everyday. There is not enough hours and as little as I sleep, my dreams are filled with workflow processes and Javascripting stacks.

But when I have my “Days off” I have to decide what will make a successful day before I go to bed the night before.

Thurs-Fri are my typical “Days off” ergo these are the days I get to pour hours into my company.

I start with a word count goal typically 2k-3k.

Some days I only get 500 words toward my finished work. Those are sad days but they happen. It’s not that I didn’t try on those days. I spent the time at the computer with Word Open, I went to the gym, I wasn’t too full or too hungry. Typically I painted myself into a corner and sense I write from the hip meaning I do very little plotting, I occasionally run into a scenario where the characters have to solve some challenge but it has to be in a believable way.

I can’t have the honest paladin steal a set of keys to free his friend who got locked up for sleeping with the captain’s daughter. I can’t just magic a solution from the barkeep who happened to be an Ex-mage. The lover can’t just turn her objections into affections because the sex scene would really slip in well here, no the characters have to be true to themselves. Because unlike real life fiction has to make sense.

When you work for yourself you decide whether or not your day was a success. But you need to measure not just yesterday but the day before and the day before that. Each day looking back with the knowledge you have now and evaluating exactly how successful that day was.

This Little Blog

has yielded not a single book sale I’m aware of. So is it worth maintaining?

Yes, Blogging helps me write by getting over myself and getting a lot of the junk out of my system. And while most days I get only a single view. Since regularly posting each week starting in March:

I’ve garnered over 20 followers, 12 of which I’m certain are real life robots

I’ve gotten over a thousand unique visitors. Two of my posts regularly appear in google search results.

I’ve even been referenced over on KiwiFarms as a source of red pill authority

-Quite the feather in my Fedora-

{Blatant Sarcasm}

{}About the Fedora{}

Now my current game-plan is no secret, Once I have Three more Novella’s in the Chamber. I’m going to push The Duke and The Dragon Hard as every read should yield my an ROI of $35. Finally writing will be profitable. Hopefully by Jun 2021 It will be my full time gig.

I have been writing for three years. And every single November has been a dead month. That’s three November’s without a single word written. What’s that random #writingcommunity stranger #NaNoWriMo is November where people write a 50k novel in a single month and my novella’s only Average 40k. Well then, FUCK YOU, -straight-en’s choker- I mean clearly my muse is busy helping others that month.

But I’ve looked at the trend and I have to say. I’m taking next November off, regardless. That’s right random citizen author I’ll be on Vacay while you’re cramming at #NaNoWriMo. Because It’s had no measurable negative impact on my writing quality or my works in progress. November is filled with family issue’s events and surprises from the woodwork. Was it a successful month? If I just looked at this past November I would say no, But since I have 2018 and 2017 to look at as well. I have a different view, Was 2019 November a success? Yes, I am quite refreshed and ready to work.

In Three Year’s I’ve written Three Books. In Four I’ll have Written Seven or Ten. If I can make this my full time- gig. I’m looking at clocking Ten a year.

When you are working for yourself, you have to take all the data step back as far as possible from where you are, so you can see both where you are going and where you came from.

Some day’s i do feel like shit because I’m not working “HARD” enough then I remember how much harder I am working now than when I started and I feel a little better. Also I my blogging skills are improving

-except for putting pretty pictures up-

{I don’t care for that level of Aesthetics}

SO has you’re day been successful?

Compared to this time last week?

This time last year?

This time last decade?

If the answer is no

What needs to change?

That is the only other question you need to ask.

With Love,

HngyHngyHppo

Newsstand Pulp, Comic Spinners, Disney+, and why Harry Potter is the last great original IP franchise.

As a writer of novella’s my competition is every piece of media in existence, not just other books or movies, video games and YouTube as well, and even online click-bait articles from twitter or the FaceBook and fanfic hosted by WattPad. I am selling an hour and a half of entertainment after all.

A market theorist should argue that “With increased competition, the quality of the goods and services provided will increase as well.”

My starving artist friends argue that getting endorsed by an industry titan will provide financial success and legitimacy of their talents. My comic artist friends want contracts with Marvel or DC. My painters want their art on display and endorsed through high art circulations. Writers want a publishing deal with the Big 5. Musicians a record deal.

The current market is not a meritocracy. It looks that way on the surface and as long as people believe it’s operating fairly, my artist friends (you included) will not upset the institutions they seek validation from.

The current market is still an aristocracy but that is about to change.

If you want to skip the three narratives that I have based this theory on then skip ahead to these marks

_—_

Our story starts in the 1920s when newsstands became filled with pulp magazines. Competition was high. It bread Robert E. Howard. Competition was so high in fact that even the greats like the creator of Conan could not support themselves off of writing alone. Even being paid $0.01 a penny a word for a short story or serial part ($20 for 2k/ 4 pages), which is $0.15 in 2019 money (a 2k story would pay $300).

Competition was high on the newsstands, but there was no TV, no internet, no Facebook.

The 30s came around and a new beast started attacking the pulps dominance.

Comics.

By the 40s only a few Titans of pulp were left, comparable to today’s BIG 5 publishers. They would only accept the best the likes of Issac Asimov, but by the 1960s Competition was to high and what even the big magazines could afford to pay was too low to attract talent. The pulp magazine industry died somewhere in the early seventies a quite death.

Forty years is a good run but what happened to pulp magazines is what’s killing Comics.

In the 90s comics were still in every grocery store. A cheap impulse buy was the only barrier to keep up with the adventures of the Amazing Spider-Man. Accessible to everyone. Until one day they weren’t, the comic shops had opened and the speculator market was booming. Image Comics forced innovation from the big 2. This single extra step of going to a comics store prevented “normies” from buying comics, or the brands from attracting new fans. Licensing characters to Saturday morning TV (IMO) is responsible for creating the next generation of fans eager to watch batman/spider-man/MCU films.

Competition, since the 90s, is high but the inconvenience barrier of the comic book stores prevents access to a casual audience. The direct market, comic bookstores, continue to lose customers. Sept 2019’s number 1 comic was Spawn 300 which sold an est 262,599 units while the number 10 sold Harleen issue 1 sold 84,785. For point of reference, keep in mind that Wonder Woman was the reworked in the late 60s because it was selling only around 200,000 copies a month for an average issue. (known as the Mod ERA)

Sales are so low that Disney owned Marvel is considering shutting down the comics book division.

Disney sits at the top of the market place right now. They want to leverage this position to run Disney+ and make that sweet Netflix money. Competition in the streaming service center is now high. Access is also getting harder.

Lets go back to before cable, Disney use to air it’s movies on regular television. Then once cable came along and VHS, Disney switched to a direct to customer model. Selling it’s classic films for limited time to customers who didn’t have cable and locking their films behind the cable pay wall. They turned away 80s children who now didn’t have access to their films. Then in the 90s when they became dependent on those same 80s children to watch their films, no one showed up to the theatre. Disney almost went bankrupt before the Pirates franchise saved them in the early 2000s.

Disney+ will do the same for the Disney corporation, when they depend on the adults and parents of 2030 to show up to the theatre.

Now the short answer as to why Harry Potter will be the last great original IP.

Harry Potter books came out in the 90s. Where was there audience exposed to them? What was there competition?

Scholastic Book Fairs

90s children had little internet, no cell phones, comic books were in comic stores.

Before the movies were released, this series of books was able build a hardcore base over the course of four years then it’s movie releases brought more people into the books. Growing each year as children aged up and were exposed to the books at the book fair and the movies all over television. In 2005 cable became mandatory as the FCC demanded that all TV convert to HD by 2005. Which meant that more people had access to catch the first three Harry Potter films on marathon every other week.

Children today and for the foreseeable future will have unlimited access, to everything. Clint Eastwood’s man with no name trilogy, the death of superman, The entire discography of Prince. Whatever they, or you want, is just a couple of taps away from the palm of your hand. And that’s if they are in the mood to spend or search pirate bay. YouTube, Twitch, TikTok, Reddit, Wattpad all provide free alternatives to keep you entertained.

_—_

Competition could not be higher.

Access by everyone for everything is high.

Convenience of Access is being limited only by the Titans themselves.

I have a plan, a theory, and a mission. But I can not do this alone.

The Future is not individual artist competing against each other.

The Future is small groups of artists functioning as one for each other.

The larger and more unified the artist group the more effective they will be as individuals.

I’m bringing together seven independent authors whose target audience is men ages 18-25+.

As the Magnificent Seven remarks.

“Men are Cheaper than Rifles.”

Right Now there are two requirements for a seat on this council

          1. You must have at least one professionally edited publish work for sale. (one mistake per 10k words)

          2. You are willing to spent at least 2 hours a week for the promotion and success of the council.

E-mail me at hppofantasywestern@yahoo.com

The first applicant to meet the requirements will be accepted immediately. Then applicants will be approved through an interview process and by a majority vote of the sitting members of the council until all seven positions have been filled. The last approved member of the council will get amazon and goodreads reviews from the sitting six members, As the first order of the council’s business.

Whether first or last you’ll be a winner, if you join a winning team.

I also want to make this clear. I don’t want your money. I want to help you sell books. I want to sell more books. I want to use the skills I have to best serve the other members of the council, in exchange for promotion, legitimacy and audience sharing. If you want these things as well and you’re willing to spend two hours of your time each week trading support for support.

Then let’s work together.

Send these to anyone author you know might be interested.

With Love,

HngyHngyHppo

You can reach me on Twitter at @HppoTweeter

I have a pattern of breaking myself

I just received a text from a fellow trying to leverage the courses his paid for to become a real estate investor. He’s been attempting to break free from the 9-5 life for almost a decade and he asked me a question.

“What I don’t understand, is why don’t we always do the things that are in our best interest, and none of the things that don’t serve us.”

-Future millionaire friend post the year of our lord 2019

The answer is simple… well simply complicated. This is a broad question and their are very specific answers for very specific patterns of behavior or unserving bad habits. Generalizations are not going to help here.

But that’s not what I wanted to talk about in the first place.

I first asked this when I was maybe thirteen. I thought at the time I was clever and I could figure it out. I was after all a smart boy, educationally bored and problems like this I could dwell on til I had an answer I deemed suitable.

First I made the question simpler

“Why am I doing things that I don’t 100% want to do because I know aspects of them are bad?”

Things like

Why am I teasing my friend for his failed attempt to draw ghastly? Why don’t I answer all the questions on the quiz? Why don’t I like eating vegetables? Why did I steal that thing? Why do I occasionally drop everything and focus everything on one specific aspect of a task like an annual retentive accountant? Why am I thinking dirty thoughts instead of focusing the math homework?

What I understood then was that each of these things that I was doing was in service to a need that I had but not all my needs as a person. Stealing got me the object of my desire but left me with guilt becuase god says it’s wrong so now I feel bad. Bee tea dubs stealing is wrong unless its inspiration or art or method.

So this is when I broke myself apart to figure out why half of me could be fore something and half could be against it. Or in some cases how twenty percent could take control and do it anyways.

I took the general motivations I as best as I understood them and created a council room within my mind for them to meet and discuss the business of life. I sit as always at the head to my left sits the first chair but all chairs are equal. (This bugs me that even as a child with no knowledge of military seating etiquette. I managed to solve the problem of having a rectangular board room table but distance from the head of the table did not create an implicit rank between the board members. By leaving the chair on my right side empty for guests every member present was equally separated and not therefore equal in voice, votes, and authority though a standard meeting starts from left and ends on the empty or guest chair.)

Well, the first chair sits myself in a leather jacket, long rebellious hair, and a quite curt demeanor. He is in change with aspects of myself that pertain to image, social influence, status, reputation. Basically the Fonz of my brain letting me know how a given course of action will affect me socially. The public relations officer if you will.

Then to his left sits myself rather thinner wearing glasses, a lab coat, a short unkempt but regularly trimmed haircut. His role is to simply tell me the odds of success, cost benefit analysis, and general inquiries needed to raise the quality of data available for future decisions or more accurate predictions. This is the head of my R&D division.

To his left, and at the tail of the table, sits myself bearded in robes with a funny hat and fluctuating religious adornments. Sometimes deacon-like color schemes or wearing a Buddhistic piety cut. His appearance is never static. His role is guide me morally, ethically, and righteously through life as any spiritual advisor would. His arguments come largely from christian teachings but he will incorporate all other available religious teachings as well. Unfortunate Corporations don’t have souls and therefore moral guidance does not have a seat or position within a company’s board room. So there is no corporate equivalent job title but as far as a military command he would literally by the Chaplin.

To his left, now ascending the right hand side of the table. Sits myself in full military regalia, a five star general, military fade cut weekly, the most muscular build of myself, as well as the rudest. He speaks for authority, discipline, and how to concisely achieve victory. The chief of operations or COO would be the corporate equivalent. General Order is about stratagem, resources, and whether or not a course of action is lawful.

To his left is my penis, an unimaginative representation of myself wearing a mushroom capped flesh toned German M35 steel helmet. Yeah I was going through puberty at the time and providing representation to the hormonal screams of my body was and still is important. Otherwise ignoring his thought process leads to unexpected outcomes when shareholders vote over a given course of action. Because he is a strong shareholder within the boardroom of my brain. Suffice it to say his advice will often be “Fuck it!” or “Fuck it hard!” or “Fuck it gently.” or the classic “I don’t give a fuck.”

Then there sits an empty chair and beyond that at the head of the table sits myself, without body.

This helped me discover a few of the reasons why I did things that I shouldn’t be.

Why did I steal that?

Because now you have another item that adds to your social status. It’s what’s cool

It was very likely to succeed. I saw no cause to raise the alarm.

I was out voted. Don’t steal.

While success was likely the consequences of a failed attempt would have been disaster. Don’t do that again without first consulting us.

Nice. Fuck that guy am I right.

Well there you have it a peak behind the framework that I use to deliberate future courses of action when I have time to internally debate whether or not any idea is a good idea or bad one.

Did this solve the ever present problem of long-term self destructive behavior. NO, each behavior must be analyzed and dealt with individuality. There is not blanket cure-all one pill solution to apply.

Much Love,

HngyHngyHppo

Pragmatism is the only philosophy of success

Pragmatism has gotten a bad rap over the years.

Coined by John Dewey it is often regarded as the American philosophy

More so than Objectivism

The bad rap comes from an effective campaign of people who don’t want you to succeed.

If you know the wrong facts about Dewey

then you know he is credited with the American k-12 education model

-false-

He pioneered the Dewey decimal system

-true-

He advocated for standardized testing

-false-

If you know the mis-characterizations of pragmatism then you may have heard

Follow your emotions… Take Action

-Rucka Rucka Ali

Pragmatism is concerned with getting the job done at any practical cost. It is not a cruelty free philosophy. If a man stands in your way and killing him allows you to cross, then that is the pragmatic demand of the situation.

-H.B. Brag

Pragmatism is just an excuse to justify a Hedonistic lifestyle. “Do What Feels Good.”

Over what is actually and objectively good for both you and society at large.

– Stephen Strawman

But the truth is simple, yet nuisance and messy as with all things in life.

The truth (IMHO) is that pragmatism would best be described as the Scientific Method applied to life.

Pragmatists start with their feelings that is true. They use those feelings to form a hypothesis.

Hypothesis- “I should be a banker.”

then they gather data and preform tests as necessary to prove or disprove that hypothesis.

LONG before they declare a college major and/or career path.

The end result helps them decide whether or not to pursue banking.

Some people will love banking, Some will not but could stand it, and some one you know thinks it’s a great idea but you know they will burn out of the finance world like a magician’s flash-paper.

Now Education and Pragmatism

Dewey advocated not for a grading system and standardized tests but for a system closer to UN-schooling. Where the teacher is a facilitators and course direction and study is determined by the students who create their own projects and experiments then evaluate the results of the experiment as well as their course of action. Their can not be a grade scale because even in failure knowledge will be gained on evaluation. As opposed to the current American model or rote memorization and regurgitate on demand.

for example

if you remember

THE MITOCHONDRIA IS THE POWER-HOUSE OF THE CELL.

That is because of hours and hours of rote learning.

(Which has it’s place. Letters, math tables, trig functions. Many things can be learned best through rote education.)

What can not be learned through rote education is Critical Thinking and Abstract Problem Solving.

Pragmatism teaches you where to start

with a feeling

“I feel like I can do a back-flip.”

teaches you to test that feeling against reality

-tries back-flip

Measure the outcome. Did you succeed or fail? Why? Did you enjoy the attempt?

Then that serves as a basis for continuing forward.

I write these thorns to solidify, my own positions on these topics. Because the mere act of writing a short and finished -though unpolished- article has helped my writing speed and quality in my true calling Pulp novella writing.

I actually get more energy and focus after having written an article like this than if I was just to tick away an equivalent word count or about 1-2% of my next novella. This boost in my mood about having something personally achieved allows me to tackle the 5-15% novella quota I have each week.

This is pragmatism in action.

It took two hours in writing this but I know that It was worth more than the 3 hours I spent last week on Twitter entertaining myself and trying to convince myself that I am learning how to optimize my exposure on the platform @hppotweeter. Be tea dubs.

Much love, HngyHngyHppo

I promise you’ll read this and smirk

As storytellers we make a promise to our readers that they will at the very least be entertained. If we don’t fulfill this promise, they will but down the book and find something else that fulfills that desire to be entertained.

What does that mean though?

To be entertained.

Of course for everyone it is a different and unique flavor pf desire. Some like a complete character growth arc one where the lonely neglected street urchin becomes king honored, refined, and desired. Through their journey we achieve a temporary relief from our own dissatisfaction with our place in this would.

If you don’t know what you are promising your genre reader than you won’t be successful. Period.

I write pulp western fantasy novellas.

My first promise is simple.

SEX

Premo Prose,

Ink stains that your eyes easily…oh so… effortlessly slide over crafting euphemistic yet euphoric images inside your minds,

I promise a sweet dark chocolate surprise somewhere hidden within my text.

But I am not writing Erotica. I’m writing Pulp I am literally writing easy to digest garbage. Staple of the pulp promise are racy plot driven stories that finish quickly and leave no marks on the reader after the experience is over.

My second promise is a bit more complicated

Western stories

mean more than the three decades of American expansionism that sprung the genre. In its basic elements a western is a story following an unchanging iconic hero often a stoic emotionally as they navigate a hostile world. At the bare minimum it must contain the stoic emotionally distant hero and a hostile world. No gun-play and cowboy boots needed.

My fantasy promise

is the fantastical. From the magic’s of the elder dragons of the northern kingdom to the rumors of dwarves. These are facts of reality for the denizens that populate my world and stories but they are not of the earth that we inhabit and when you read about how an illusion caster summons lighting from the clouds. You should be impressed and your own imagination should run with the questions of how, why, what if, and that would mean, etc.

Those are the basics of my promises to readers

This blog has made the promise that if you didn’t smirk you’ve left unsatisfied

and well i am sorry but this is a blog

and as such it’s only promise is that it is a web based log of it’s author’s thoughts. Which it is.

I didn’t promise Shakespearean turn of phrase.

I didn’t promise you atmospheric mastery like Lovecraft.

[Self thought: it would be rather ironic once my writing mastery has reached the point where I can craft works on par with Lovecraft or Hemingway but have to shelve those works because they do not satisfy the promise of pulp western fantasies.]

What have you promised your readers? Drop it in the comments. I’ll get to it if I can

By entering genre fiction.

Much love,

Hngyhngyhppo

I don’t plot, I brew.

There are two ends of the spectrum when it comes to writers. Plotters: those who in fine detail outline the order of events within and outside of their narrative. And Pantsers those who sit down and go on a journey with their characters as it happens. Every writer falls closer to one side.

Then there are

saints like

Cheyanne A Lepka

Who created a chart akin to DnD alignment

D6YdtRjU8AAJT36

 

I’m a True Plantser.

And this is the process I use.

Which is both frustrating and exciting.

I start with the problem and a question what would happen if?

Goblins used guns, Miners discover a dragon egg and abandon their contract, A duke is on a hunting expedition to slay a dragon,

Exciting because I don’t know how my stories will end or what turns they will take.

Frustrating because I thought it was going one way but no it went another.

Fiction unlike reality, or this blog, has to make sense

So I have a loose outline, but I have to keep the characters fidelity high. Which means that if a character is about to act out of character just so I can have everyone hit their marks and move the story back to the outlined path, I won’t go there. Sometimes that means my characters demand I scale a vertical cliff or walk through a dangerous marsh rather than stick to the simple well laid path.

When I hit these difficult patches, I do a lot of thinking. What do I need to do now? And I work though in my head over a dozen or two dozen unwritten paths, until that eureka moment hits and the wall is scalable and entertaining. Then I do that.

Though I am still a little sore that I was unable to use pirates in my last story because. I had them roughly outlined, their motivations, weapons, etc etc. But the characters on stage demanded more screen time and had a far more interesting tale to write. SO I put those pirates back in the cupboard and when I get a chance I’ll see if I can use them to spice up another story.

Oh man I am going to have to rewrite this post a few times to get the words as they should be.

Oh well,

Much Love

HngyHngyHppo

If you found yourself in this chart and want to argue. I’ll be in the comments below.

Turning Inspiration into dedication.

1% inspiration. 99% perspiration.

  • -Einstein

Let’s talk about energy, time, knowledge, and resources(money usually)

First you were excited about all the things you learned. You had all the energy in the world and nothing seemed like work. You were too young to even have a concept of work itself. Life was just a series of let me try this now. Now this. This way. Oh that’s new let me try that. You had the time, the energy, but had no concept of what knowledge you needed or what money was.

Then childhood was over and puberty started. And suddenly you knew everything, you found yourself surrounded on all sides by the incompetence of those in authority around you.

Parent’s just don’t understand

-Will Smith

Yet even though you knew everything you were still learning at a rapid pace. You would discard poor information for better information without a struggle, you had no concept of ego but figured this was the way to do things from now on. That was in keeping with your self concept of knowing everything. You had the energy. The knowledge basics. The time though that was kept from you by obligations like school and fun Resources either went to affluence or to enjoying your time.

It’s in this stage I was sold one of the biggest lies of my life. That “Real Life” began after high-school. Then I got that diploma, Turns out your still a child till your thirty. Then your not an adult until…. UNTIL… UNTIL. It just keeps going. Your either a child or an elder there is never an in-between.

If you take anything away from this. Take this “High School” is “Real Life”. If you wait for real life to start because you think it has a different rule set not only will you be disappointed but you’ll be behind the game. The only real differences are that your body may not be finished cooking til your older and that things can be different once you have money. But the personality you leave High school with will be your personality for just about ever. So take the mission of getting the personality you want.

Now- back to the Now

You have found that you have enough energy and time to go to work forty hours, sometimes sixty. And if your lucky in this late stage capitalist nightmare then perhaps your banking a decent amount of resources. But in all likely hood you are spending what little excess you have on inflating your happiness to put up with your work schedule. Congratulations, you don’t have the time or energy, and even if you have the resources you’ve lost the knowledge.

1% inspiration 99% perspiration

-Einstein

The knowledge you’ve lost is that you don’t know shit. Motivational life coaches and other carpet baggers will sell you the dream. One quick trick to fix your broken life. You pay the resources and get a high of inspiration but the high fades and so you chase another hit from a different dream seller.

The problem is your Ego. You’ve been successful for so long in the status quo that secretly you don’t want to change a thing. Because if you did, honestly, you would have. You’ve met the basic needs of Maslow’s hierarchy and while you strive to complete the second tier before you can reach the top. You’ve been holding yourself back.

If you can work sixty hours for a paycheck then why can’t you work for yourself six more?

What do I want to do?

Who am I?

Where do I want to be?

Ask the right questions and fucking accept the answers. I don’t want to write books but I have to. I don’t want to work in a warehouse but I need to. These are the things that make me … well myself. The more I stay true to how I am the more energy I seem to find. The less resources I need to spend on happiness. The more open I am to receiving knowledge that helps me without having it conflict with what I already have in practice.

In Maslow’s hierarchy Self-actualization is at the top. To be taken care of after all other concerns are addressed. But you’ll be spinning your wheels if you don’t answer that need first.

Ask the right questions and accept whatever the answers are

By doing that you will create the energy,

You master the time,

If you know how to use google the knowledge is at your beck and call.

You may not have the resources, but that means you need to ask smaller questions.

Not just because you are going to need to sweat doesn’t mean that it has to be something that isn’t inherently fun.

With Love,

HngyHngyHppo

Creating Milestones that take less than a mile…

There are many terrible things about being a writer. My gripe today is about milestones and deadlines. While all of these are self imposed and I can change them tomorrow if i felt the need. It is important to use them.

I don’t like it but it is none the less important.

I started writing ages ago and never finished anything. Then in 2017 I was left with only one choice if I wanted to continue to be an entrepreneur and work for myself. I had to write. I don’t want to write… It is not the most enjoyable thing I spend my time doing.

But it is the only thing that I have enough resources and skill at that it was worth pursuing. Also it solved a huge problem in my life.

The lack of decent male orientated novella length pulp fiction. If penguin publishing was still commissioning new or similar series to the Trailsmen then I would never have picked up the pen and instead refined perhaps my programing and game design skills.

But they didn’t and here we are.

My first book took over a year for only about 42K words… I know that I should have been able to finish it sooner but I didn’t know how to do. My second book took six months and my third and best book so far took only four. I should be able to get a book done every three months at a pace of 8k a week and so my next book will be ready by the start of September.

What does this have to do with milestones well I found that these milestones work for me. 600 words take a break. Finish scene take a long break. Keep track of my progress towards my deadline am I behind, ahead of schedule, or right on target.

In school I’ve always been a do it at the last minute type and the fear of failure has been a good focus. But with no publisher and audience breathing down my neck for the next Song of Ice and Fire, I have to manufacture my own fear.

The first thing I do is increase the demanded production to much higher than I can handle. It’s overwhelming but I’ll try to get 8k words done today and another 8k words tomorrow and another 8k after that. I took an extra day off of my part time job that pays my full time bills so that I could have the day to write. This helps keep that pressure on… I enjoy work and the bills it pays. I now have to prove that taking that day was worth forfeiting the steady days pay in exchange for higher production on my novella.

If I’m successful at reaching my word count goals than this book 4 will be draft a month and a half before I expect to publish it. Allowing my more time to edit and apply wordcraft polish before I send her off to the editor. While at the same time will remind me of the extreme work flow that I’m capable of and draw ever closer to my goal of having four more quality novellas done before June of next year.

And gee I wish these words counted but they don’t this distraction has cost me 30 minutes I should be writing,

With love

hngyhngyhppo