Tag Archives: Religion

Blog Restructuring: You’re going to like it.

Devoted readers, I submit to you that my various ramblings, while entertaining, may appear random and unfocused. For this reason, I am implementing blog patch 3.0.024.2042.1491823.24985492.2.0000000q.

In this edition of the website, my commitment to you is to post three times per week; specifically, on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Saturdays. Read More →

Now Introducing: Columns

I’ve been advised to keep “focused” here at jasonrpeters.com. But what does that mean? Should every post revolve around writing?

Monitoring and sharing my progress as a writer is the primary reason I started this site. But if I were to constantly write only about writing, I would consider that:

1. Boring to my readers and

2. Immature of me as a writer

Writing about writing is easy since it’s the topic I probably know the most about. It’s also much easier to write a book about how hard it was to write a real book than it is to write a real book.

Writing about anything else takes research, effort, and talent. Also, if you look over the history of blog, you’ll notice a predictable trend. Articles about where I am as a writer get barely any comments. This is true for the mirror posts on Facebook and for email correspondence.

Articles about politics, video games, philosophy, religion, books, and movies generate interesting discussion. That’s what writing is for, to open the mind. (An open mind is an open door, no?)

But my detractors are correct, I do need to keep the site more focused. And I’ve figured out a way to do that AND advance my career and maturity as a writer:

Columns.

This is something I’ve thought about doing for a long time, and now seems like the perfect opportunity. First week of the new year and all that crap.

Columns are how websites or publications with many topics divide up their topics among their staff and among their readers into organized, methodical components. I have a staff of only one: I’m writer, editor, webmaster, controller, and owner. And today I’m giving myself some specific assignments.

Writing columns will help me stay on topic for the website week after week, rather than rambling about whatever pops into my head, while allowing me to set aside the topic of my own career.

Below are the column ideas I have currently; I’m sure they will change or evolve based on your responses and involvement, but the ones I have so far will at least help get me started with some broad topics. I have ideas for several more columns than the ones below, but I’m going to start small and see how much time these occupy before committing to something like one per day.

ASK JASON ANYTHING

It’s a writer’s job to know a little bit about everything, and to thoroughly research anything he doesn’t know. ASK JASON ANYTHING is your opportunity to challenge Jason with a question of any kind, whether it’s scientific or religious, financial or social, political, historical. It can be something you already know, or something you’re genuinely curious to learn. You can ask trivia or knowledge or advice, and every Thursday, Jason will do his best to answer.

JASON ASKS EVERYTHING

On Fridays, Jason selfishly turns the tables and asks questions of you, the readers, why things are the way they are, and what we as individuals or a culture can do to make our world better. Where do you worship? Where do you work? How do you vote? What do you buy? And how is your life, and the lives of those around you shaping up as a result?

SATURDAY SPOTLIGHT

Each Saturday, Jason spotlights one product or service he finds particularly useful or enjoyable; the kind of things that make you wonder, “Why doesn’t everyone have this?”

I find the results intriguing

statisticsI don’t think I’m likely to get many more votes, although if you want, you can still vote here for my next project. Let’s tally the current results, though:

2 votes to rewrite Perfect Justice.
2 votes to write The Dragon Thief.

::blink:: Okay, I’ll come back to that.

1 vote apiece for Manifest Destniy and Second Chances.

The coolest thing about these results is that each story appeals to at least one person, even among a small group of people. Had one story monumentally dominated the poll, I’d fear that the other ideas were stale.

I honestly had expected Second Chances to win, for no other reason than that’s the story I’m the most excited about at the moment, but only for two reasons: 1. It’s the freshest idea, and 2. I’ve recently begun work on it. The others have either been sitting idle awhile or else not yet begun. You can see how circumstances colors a writer’s perception; just because a story is freshest in my mind doesn’t make it the most appealing to audiences in general.

So of the two which pulled ahead, both surprised me. The Dragon Thief, unlike some of the other titles, has no overt philosophical, religious, or political implications. You can see how the other stories play with themes like justice, fairness, religion, good & evil, memory, experimentation, and so forth. The Dragon Thief is nothing more than a straight-up fantasy story.

But that’s what appeals to some people, which is a Really Good Thing. Excitement begets excitement, and seeing that two people wanted to read that story first has made me much more excited about writing it than I was before.

What about Perfect Justice? That story fills an odd place in my heart; that girl you almost dated in college, still love deeply but no longer romantically and aren’t in touch with anymore — something like that. There’s a lot of baggage associated with rewriting it, yet it had so much potential I can’t ignore it. For one thing, it’s the only submission so far to win me a “send more” reply. For another, many of the problems with it were obvious to me shortly after writing it.

I’m dragging my feet on rewriting it because — flawed or not — I already wrote it. And it’s easier (to me) to write a story from scratch than to rewrite one that’s already on paper. It’s like completely remodelling a house vs. building a new one; changing where the walls are placed is actually a bit more complex than just building brand new ones on a new foundation. (Or so I imagine.)

There are a lot of decisions to make, too. Do I begin with the text I already have and just mass edit, cutting whole portions to make room for new scenes? Or do I begin like a brand new story, starting from the first page, referencing the other version only for the best ideas, lines, and descriptions? A mix of both?

Either way, I’ll be constantly checking for continuity and cohision, and it’s likely I will still miss some things. Just imagining doing this begins to make my head spin as from a complex chess problem.

So which of the two winners shall I write first?

The Dragon Thief. Mostly because I want to see how it turns out. When I need a break from it, I’ll plug away at a new version of Perfect Justice, and vice versa. You’ve gotta give the people what they want.