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

It takes more than time…

Ten years ago I had grand dreams as to who and where I would be

A year ago I did not imagine I would be where I am now.

A year from now I cannot imagine where I will be.

To even attempt to do so is a waste of time.

Success takes more than time.

If all it took was time

Their would be

no

Wal-Mart

Greeters over fifty

That didn’t intentionally want

There careers. No no no if you need

More for your future then you have to do more

Do more than you ever thought was possible and learn

More than you ever dared to imagine. Learn more, Do more.

Wait no more…

..

This hourglass poem was crafted with love and care for you,

Hngynhngyhppo

Why I’m using Acts instead of Chapters

A typical 300 page or 80k+word novel will have anywhere between 30 and 60 chapters that cover the typical beats of a 3 act story structure.

Now there is nothing wrong with this. This is fine and I’m sure plotters get a lot of use out of it. But I’m a pantser and I’m writing pulp

My novellas follow a 5 act structure to cover the 40k word count or 150 pages.

Each act should be a self contained pulp fantasy western story

Conflict introduced – Conflict resolved

Act 1

The Duke and The Dragon

Mouse is a hired gun for the Duke’s hunting party

The hunt is Dangerous

Mouse fights wolves

The Duke hunts falcons from inside the safety his hired and loyal men create

Conflict introduced

Mouse and the men risk there lives to protect the duke who doesn’t come close to danger. But the duke’s personal bard sings of the duke’s heroism and skill in hunting and the men who haven’t faced danger cheer the story

Conflict resolved

Mouse and the men have a private meeting with the duke where he learns more about them and their pasts, their families, and shows that he actually cares about the men under his command both the temporary hired and the loyal men from the kingdom

Act 2

Conflict introduced

Mouse and the men need a plan to hunt a specific bull of the duke’s choosing but they don’t know which bull the duke will want to hunt

Conflict resolved

They “red team” each others plans and come up with a plan for each of the wild herds prize bulls

and the hunt starts

Act 3

Conflict introduced

The duke has trouble with ladies and Mouse offers him bad advice (get really drunk)

Conflict resolved

The duke becomes so drunk that he almost challenges Mouse to a duel. Which if he lost Mouse would become the Duke of Rose-Scent…

So the duke’s tutor casts a magic spell to distract the duke.

She creates an illusion in the sky to make a thunder cloud look like a dragon. The duke passes out before he can finish his challenge.

Act 4

Conflict introduced

The duke says he had a prophetic dream last night that they will meet a dragon in less than three weeks and he offers extra gold to any of the hired guns willing to stay. After testing the duke’s memory of last night, Mouse thinks that this is clearly the duke misunderstanding the magic from last night and there is no dragon.

Conflict resolved

As they march north it becomes clear that there is a strong magic caster killing virgins. They are attacked by a flame avatar of a dragon. There might be a dragon involved…

Act 5

Conflict introduced

Yes there is a dragon

Conflict resolved

Yes they fight a dragon

In the Duke and the Dragon

This final climax is the hunting of a dragon. But it is not the focus of the any Act except Act 5. Act 1 is an introduction to the dangers of the Freeland and the Duke’s hunt. Act 2 shows how Mouse navigates as a scout and a ladies man. Act 3 is where the story turns from Mouse being competent to Mouse losing and the final conflict is spelled out for the reader. Act 4 is resolution of logistics necessary for the final conflict as well as a minor conflict that feeds into the climax. Act 5 uses as many tools from the previous acts to bring about a satisfying resolution to the novella.

Each act consists of as many scenes either written in traditional format or in vignettes as is necessary to give a successful resolution to the introduced conflict.

Because this is a western I do not linger on descriptions or world-building. If a scene does not contain conflict-resolution then it will be rather short.

The best part about this structure it’s really easy for me as a pantser to use and create a constant quality novella. Each Act is roughly 8k words of minor conflicts and resolutions one major.

Act 1 introduction

Act 2 Rising confidence (the readers confidence in Mouse)

Act 3 The Turn (The Final conflict is revealed)

Act 4 Regaining competence (Mouse adapts and prepares to face the conflict)

Act 5 Climax conclusion

If this was a wonder women comic

Act 1

This is wonder woman (introduction)

Act 2

See how she beats up a bad guy (readers gain confidence)

Act 3

Oh No! She has been tied up (readers worry)

Act 4

She hears the evil plan (readers regain confidence and are excited about the resolution)

Act 5

She could have escaped the whole time.. She saves the day (hurray)

that’s what I have to say about that,

With love,

Hngyhngyhppo

Dear Romance Reader,

There is a man in your life who needs a helping hand…

You know one or more of these men they may be your brothers, sons, or friends but they haven’t picked up and read a book in year or more. Perhaps they have abandoned reading for fun somewhere in primary/high school and haven’t gone back to find the wonder and thrills hidden between the pages of a good story.

Whether we are strolling the emerald shores of the Scottish highlands, listening with anticipation for the waves crashing against the cliffs to come to a crescendo as our lovers are about to shed their shame that has kept their lips apart and become as free as the seaside’s misting spray.

Or

Holding the pages clutched tight as we can’t help but feel a burning rage building inside as our heroine becomes blocked, put down, and is faced with an unexpected yet inevitable obstacle barring her from her love. As a reader we desire nothing more than to slap our heroine’s villainous foil across the face and shout “Bitch!” with conviction.

It’s only after we’ve put these books down and look back at the world, at least for me, feel a twinged of guilt.

I want the world to experience this joy. I shouldn’t feel bad I know there exists a good book for everyone…

Sadly here is the problem I need your help to solve.

Every year someone goes without reading a full length novel they have lost reading speed. This is a huge problem for men. During the droughts in my life: The 60 hour work weeks, the 25 credit course loads, the high school activities and responsibilities that demanded more and left no time for a vacation between the pages of a good story. My reading speed fell.

In the time it takes you to be five pages deep, surrounded by the bright sights, calming scents, and rich sounds of a million dollar beach vacation, I’ve barely met our leads…

Blessed by god at the right time in my life I found western pulp fiction.

Small and simple books that are low on description, the author trusting that my imagination could fill in the gaps. Fast paced action preformed by flat almost cardboard-like caricatures that carried me from the initial conflict to the last page.

Soon my speed and concentration were back in form and I could read not just what I wanted but books that I needed to grow as a man, husband, and servant.

We know that books have an impact on not just our emotional health but our future success. They have shaped how we are able to deal with conflict and challenges in our life. Our hearts have been broken and healed by fiction.

If you’ve asked these men why they haven’t read a book and they’ve responded. Something to the effect

“I just haven’t found something that holds my interest.”

What they may be trying to communicate is that their reading speed and concentration is too low to enjoy the greats you know they’d love.

Here’s the shill, For the next 5 days this is free and after that 99 cents is the lowest amazon would let me offer it.

disguised inside the pages of the 180 page action film of words, is a tale about prejudice, acceptance and keeping your promises.

But don’t tell them that.

“This shit’s got a dragon, loads of violence, shape shifting wolves, magic and guns…”

My beta-reader hadn’t picked up a book in two years and now is reading Dune. So I know that if you man gives this junk half a chance they will be back into the written world and finding not only what interests them but what will make them better.

Thank you for your time and attention today,

Now someone you know needs to be sold (free til June 2nd) on this book because this is something they didn’t know they needed in their life until you’ve given it to them.

With Love,

Hngyhngyhppo

Resistance through pain.

This has been inspired by two thorns.

A fantastic YouTube video by Storytellers

How To Be Creative: How an Artist Turns Pro

And my current flaring hemorrhoids

The video covers the subject of resistance. The resistance of doing anything but the creative work that you should be doing. Whether that is procrastination, fear, and/or anxiety that prevents you from starting or continuing.

What this hasn’t covered or mentioned is the resistance of being in physical pain.

Everyone has experienced at least a bad day when you haven’t had enough sleep. You’ve forgot to take your caffeine and you’ve got a headache that you know will rob you of the next few hours of work. Bruised and sore muscles.

We can get through our paying gigs just fine. Suffering through these aches and pains without a great loss to the man we are making dollars for. But then when we have the chance to work for ourselves … well … results may vary.

I’ve torn a muscle in my shoulder two hours into an eight hour shift during my first ninety days at a cardboard factory. It’s been two years and there is still of whisper of that muscle that hasn’t been reclaimed reminding me of that I’ve lifted and worked through a 7 on the Stanford Pain Scale. And I’ve experienced a certified 9 as reference.

Right now I’ve got a cough and a hemorrhoid that spikes my pain from 3 to 5. But here I am still getting work done. Tonight when I’m lifting in my warehouse job I might be between a 5 and 7 but that’s not going to stop me there.

So why does this pain stop me when I’m here?

Why then can’t I get work done, pages written, plots thickened, or characters killed, if I’m experiencing anything greater than a 4 on the pain scale?

Why isn’t this type of resistance discussed?

What really burns me through… is how I forget that I was ever in pain to begin with. I was sick last Friday and I couldn’t get more than a single page of a comic script transferred from storyboard to word. Then I spent all Saturday beating myself up about how I’ve wasted a twenty four hour period. Only to have a cough remind me that I was still sick and bring some form of validation for the choice I made.

I know at this point that even taking one day off is disaster to my time frames and deadlines. One day breeds two years and a decade later you’ll be just as unhappy with yourself as your unfinished or unstarted projects.

If your in pain but you do a quality 10%…

Try to be happy with that

rest and heal

Maybe tomorrow you’ll be able to do 15% or more.

But if you start doing 0% the resistance will only grow stronger and you’ll need to be at 110% before you start again.

Wishing you all good health,

Hngyhngyhppo

Why Hank Pym’s Pocket tank is lighter than you think.

[Spoilers for Ant-Man and Captain America Civil War]

One of my favorite hobbies is retro justifying. Where you apply the logic of a universe to itself in order to justify the impossible and the illogical. This is because I grew up as a star trek fan. And if you don’t “fix” the logic holes your not invested in the Sci part of   Sci-fi.

So onto Hank Pym’s pocket tank.

It’s established within universe that once Ant-Man shrinks down that he hits with the force of a full grown man. He has not lost an ounce of weight. That would mean that the tank Hank Pym carries around on a key-chain weighs about 68 tons. Hank Pym still looks in good shape for his age but I doubt he is hitting the gym hard enough to lift that.

Okay so my answer comes in two parts either may be 100% true or one my be false but if the other is true than the proof still holds.

  1. Hank Pym is and has intentionally or mistakenly lied about the properties of his Pym particles

    2.) Gravity is a property of the Quantum.

Gravity as a property of the Quantum is the easiest explanation since so little is understood about this fundamental force of the universe.

Hank Pym as a liar is far more likely IMHO. First piece of evidence is that if all his particles did was shrink the distance between particles. All you would need to do is apply the same method Edison used to invent the light-bulb. Which is probably the method that Cross attempts. The result of which is vastly different than the pym particle.

These are the properties of the Pym particle as we observe them in Ant-Man

The Pym particle violates the square-cube law.

The Pym particle and the cross particle both require a structure (suit or container) to operate “safely”.

The Pym particle unlike the cross particle is stable and does not leak or decay.

I think the solution to our tank problem is this. The way in which the Pym and cross particle function is that they do not only shrink the distance between particles but that they do this by constructing a lattice throughout the entire unit being shrunk. This lattice creates false particles and negates real particles. By creating false particles within the lattice Scott Lang doesn’t fly away when he is giant and hit by a breeze. Imagine that the Pym particles also can create a way to negate the properties of real particles. So when you shrink down a tank and have the intention that the tank weighs 68 tons to less than 2 ounces the Pym lattice suspends or negates 67.9999375 tons.

The cross particles are not stable and there lattice begins to decay after it is created. The Pym particles are static but manipulated by the regulator on the suit.

This solution fits the throwing disks as well. Since the throwing disk come in two varieties enlarging and shrinking.

The throwing disk after hitting a solid finds the border between the solid and the surrounding air and commences shrinking or enlarging.

This lattice may also act as a membrane allowing Scott Lang to breathe the same amount of oxygen a normal sized Paul Rudd would need. Very effect for when he is small but when he is large. This membrane would be unable to create enough “false” oxygen to feed his giant brain.

This membrane and lattice would also explain why that ugly dog is able to continue to live. Since the Pym membrane and lattice is stable, does not decay, and continually refreshes itself around the borders of its effected object, That ugly dog would ingest a normal amount of food for a dog but only have access to the amount needed for an ant.

TL;DR Hank Pym is a liar

the Pym particle doesn’t simply change the space between particles.

The Pym particle creates a magical lattice and membrane between the shrunk and the world in order to violate the laws of physics.

If you enjoyed this then you might want to read my take on Ready Player One and how the protagonists for both the movie and book are not the same person but work for their medium.

With love,

HngyHngyHppo

How to make something quotable…

The worst thorns are the ones that spring from my imagination and the roses.

-Hppo

I, and you, need a quick guide to creating quotes. But that resource didn’t exist. So I’ll make it myself.

This article will be laid out as follows. First the types of quotes and how they are used for social credit. Second getting your quote properly attributed to you because “anonymous” is not going to drive any traffic your way.

Types of quotes

  1. Asides

  2. Heart strings

  3. Pith/wit

  4. Truism

  5. Guiding

  6. Intelligence

  7. Context

Asides – are the “family guy” type quotes.

Come on. Let’s go. Fox is running one of those new reality shows at 8:00. Fast animals, Slow children.”

  • Peter Griffen

or one of the many

“That reminds me of the time ____” type format

Asides are typically self contained jokes or references that require no context or attribution. The users of these quotes have a handful of these loaded in their brains like bullets to fire whenever the situation is primed for it. The quoter is attempting to score social points by whipping on of these out because if the audience does not no the source material then the quoter gets credit for wit. If the audience knows and enjoys the source material then the quoter gets points for being “hip”, “fleek”, “relevant”, or whatever jargon best describes being “in on it”.

For quoters – Their is a danger of use these types of quotes to often, one quote to many times, or one source of these quotes. Like yesteryear’s fashion you need to stay up to date and keep changing out your handful of quotes to stay relevant.

For writers – These quotes have a short shelf life and by nature they will not drive traffic to you. Because the quoter is not trying to make an “appeal to authority” but instead gain social currency.

Heart Strings- are quick to hit the emotional core of a person

“Shall I compare thee to a summer’s day?”

  • Shakespeare (Sonnet 18)

“Every puppy should have a boy.”

  • Erma Bombeck

“You shall not pass!”

-Gandolf the grey

Heart string quotes do not need to be self contained like asides. These quotes are best received when the source reference is understood and the more points if the source reference was enjoyed. These types of can be repurposed for humor, wit, or a show of intelligence but the reason they have stuck in the mind of a quoter and his audience’s mind is because they pull at the heart strings.

For quoters – these types of quotes will be good in all seasons. You’ll get double points for using the quote for the scenario it was originally intended. But re-purposing the quote for humor or for helping an argument through an appeal to authority will still gain social currency.

For writers – These quotes need a lot of space, time, and care in creating. In LOTR there are very few lines of dialogue surrounding. In sonnet 18 this line sums up the whole poem. And the Erma quote can perform in a vacuum but plays more on the memories and feelings that the audience brings into the work … rather than having to craft an original emotional arc for the audience to experience.

Pith/wit quotes are just that a display by the quoter that they are witty.

“To be or not to be…”

Hamlet

“And now for something completely different”

-John Cleese

“The internet is just a world passing notes in a classroom.”

-Jon Stewart

These like Asides are self contained but the are based in a higher form of humor than brass and self-evident jokes. The quoters are using these for the purpose of making a joke but also to gain intelligence points on their social score card.

For quoters – If you find that your pith quotes are not landing because the audience does not have the same background experience to enjoy a python or daily show reference. Then attribution before the quote will help it land.

For writers – These quotes typically become quotable because they have been repeated so many times. For instance the Hamlet quote is Pith and not Intelligence because it is well understood that the quoter has not read, watched, or understood the play from which it is pulled. The same may be true for the python-ism.

Truisms – are true enough and sum up complex situations into something short and concise.

“Everybody has a plan until they get punched in the mouth.”

-Mike Tyson

“Against logic there is no armor like ignorance.”

-Laurence J. Peter

“You don’t get to choose not to pay a price, you only get to choose which price you pay.”

-Jordan B. Peterson

A good truism is concise and does not need any context surrounding it other than the audiences own life experience. These are supported by empirical evidence alone.

For quoters – These quotes will help in gaining “wisdom” points.

For writers – These quotes are often stolen, repurposed or wrongly attributed. So in your journey I hope you can be content with your truism being blatantly stolen because someone else has far more social credit or fame or authority than you. But if you have to steal a truism, go ahead you have my permission, for no one person can own the truth.

Guiding quotes

“Two roads diverged in a wood, and I —

I took the one less traveled by,

And that has made all the difference.”

-Robert Frost

“Ours is not to question why, ours is to do and die.”

-Alfred Lord Tennyson

“What would Jesus do?”

-Charles Spurgeon

“WWJD” modernized

“Write like a Mother Fucker.”
Cheryl Strayed

I’ve provided three examples all in a similar vain as to guiding one’s actions. These quotes can also be labeled “Inspirational”,”Motivational”, etc, etc. They exist because they help people make decisions or take action. People remember these quotes not because they are well written self contained but because it is a piece of advice that they would like to give themselves or others in the future.

For quoters – These quotes are great to short hand the decision process behind making a choice. Knowing your audience is important to have these quotes land. Don’t need to ask an atheist what would Jesus do or tell a rebel not to ask why. These quotes when used properly will can you the “wisdom” perk among you social crowd. And they are useful for giving advice while distancing yourself from both the impact of the advice itself and ire from if the advice is received poorly.

-If you are using these quotes but you are no longer finding that they actually have an impact on decisions you make you need to scuttle them and replace them with qoutes that do. Or you may find that you’ve become a Preacher who does not Practice.

For writers – These stay in your audiences mind because they are concise, they contain truism, and they have found them useful.

Intelligence quotes are for blowing your own horn. Making an argument from authority or for demonstrating that you are well read, well informed, and thus intelligent.

“The man who does not read has no advantage over the man who cannot read.”

-Mark Twain

“If men learn this, it will implant forgetfulness in their souls…”

-Socrates on the written word

These quotes become quotes because the source of the quote is considered intelligent and therefore the quoter is correlating their own intelligence to the intelligence of the source.

For quoters – These quotes only gain social credit during small talk. Any conversation or relationship longer than thirty minutes these quotes can actually detract from your intelligence score in the mind of your audience. Because the audience knows what your intelligence level is and over use of these types of quotes only shows that you have not made your own decisions but instead are only swayed by authorities.

For writers – Once you have gained fame associated with intelligence than your words will be taken as quotes of intelligence.

Context- carry the full weight of the source behind the quote.

“One does not simply walk into Mordor.”

-Lord of the Rings

“We’re not in Kansas anymore”

-Wizard of Oz

“D’oh”

-The Simpsons

These quotes are a concise summary of the source material and are applicable in many situations to score social credits.

For quoters – These are great as long as the reference is shared and the situation calls for the quote.

For writers – These are chosen by the audience and any attempt to craft one of these as a quote will make it bland/blunt and without the nuance that it needs to have a life cycle as a quote.

Now that you understand some of the types of quotes here are some tips for getting your quotes properly attributed.

First repetition. “As I’ve said before … [quote]”, “I’ve remarked … [quote]”, “I’ve always thought … [quote]”

Second using them for promotional taglines.

“In a world…”

-Movie trailer guy

Third false attribution these will make you seem humble as well. Say someone else with greater credentials or expertise came up with the quote. If your called out then take credit.

“Well I guess it’s mine now..”

Last understand the audience that is likely to quote you. You need to first be an authority so when they make the argument with an appeal to authority that you are cited. Second be really famous then attribution is not required as the quoter and their audience both know you are the source.