Obligatory NaNoWriMo Post.

Today’s Thursday post is actually an announcement.

I mentioned on Tuesday that I plan to finish a novel by the end of the year.  My goal next year will be to publish it. So, given the time of year, I’m going to write it out for NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month).

I’ve attempted NaNo a couple times, but I’m not a very… scheduled person.  Honestly, the fact that I’ve kept this blog going for a couple months with no dropped (Tuesday) posts is nothing short of a miracle.  So despite my passion for the written word, I always seem to lose interest about a week in.

This will not happen this year.  In order to stay on track, I will post an excerpt of my rough draft each week.  This may come in one Tuesday post, or in quarters on a Tuesday and a Thursday post: I’m not sure which will work better for me yet.

You can follow me over at my new NaNo account.  Happy writing and happy Halloween!

Codon, Part Six: Writing Systems

This week’s Thursday post has been delayed several times due to an annoyingly high volume of personal misfortune.  I don’t know if anyone else is just done with 2014, but I am.  Bring on the new year.

Codon is a language I am currently inventing based (loosely) off the rules governing RNA.  It consists of a 64-word vocabulary.  This is the final post: we sketch out an idea for a writing system.

The full vocabulary of Codon is available for free: Codon Vocab. (Note: “uccuag” should be “either”, not “in”. I haven’t gone in and changed it yet.)

Part One (introduction)

Part Two (Vocab I)

Part Three (Vocab II)

Part Four (Grammar I)

Part Five (Grammar II)

Continue reading

The Most Dangerous Game: Job Hunting

Job hunting isn’t an innate skill.  You’re expected to learn how to find a job by experience.

This is how it’s always been: in high school you get a part-time job and make a ton of mistakes, and once you’re ready for a career path you know how to look for something. How to interview. How to shake hands (avoiding the dreaded “limp fish” syndrome), how to manage your eye contact, how to network.  You’re never taught this stuff in school.  You learn by doing.

Which is great.  The “monkey-see-monkey-do” mentality of the job hunt has worked well for thousands of years, since the first zitty caveman tagged along next to a well-established hunter and emulated his leadership skills.  From apprenticeships to internships, this has worked well.

So here’s the problem: we’re breaking that system, and it’s not working any more.

Continue reading

What the heck does high-school Spanish have to do with my fantasy novel?

Back when I started my conlanging project (six weeks ago!) I wrote a little bit about how creating a language can help your writing.  I stand by that advice: constructing a language forces you to think of your entire world in a new light.  I didn’t really go into how learning a real-life, naturally-evolved language can help your writing.

Short answer: it does. Immensely.  Here’s why.

Continue reading

The Meaning of Strength

This is the thing about me:  I’m independent, I’m tough, I’m practical.  I act rationally and practically 90% of the time, rather than responding emotionally to a situation.  I don’t cry in sad movies.  If you ever have a lever and you want to move the world, I’m the rock you can stand on.

I’m strong.

And being strong sucks.

Continue reading