Tuesday, March 28, 2017

National Poetry Month Ahead

First things first, I was sad to read that The Found Poetry Review will no longer be publishing. I have learned so much from the last two National Poetry Projects I participated with them. I learned how to make poems I never thought was possible, I learned that poetry is a fluid art form. And honestly, I wouldn't be where I am with my poetry without these people and their effort to bring found poetry more respect. I really appreciate all that they did.

So since National Poetry Month starts this Saturday, I will be participating by writing a new poem a day. Actually, I have some stuff planned in April so I will have poems scheduled for posting when I am away. These will be all new poems.

Speaking of poems, I am still working on the One Book 300 Poems for Pinterest. And I have decided to make resin wall plaques with small poems embedded in the resin. I also have to start working on my poetry calendar in the next month as well. This is the year for poetry. I love creating and writing poems, there is just so much possibility. I just wish more people loved poetry like I do. Just think only a few hundred years, poetry was everywhere, and people learned poems and shared them with friends. Whatever happened to that? Now it seems like less and less people care about poems.

I skipped Nanowrimo last year, and I hoping to that I will something to work with by November. I like these writing challenges because it makes me feel like I am working toward something. Oh I know I should be working on something all the time, but I just need a little motivation just to keep going. We've all be there.

Till next time...


Sunday, March 26, 2017

Dear DNC, What the Hell?

I have been a registered Democrat since 2008. I was an Independent beforehand but in this state I have to a be a party member to vote in the primaries. Anyway, since November I have answered a lot of emails on what I think is important for the party to focus on. I have done surveys sponsored by the party. And I get no response from anyone. Anyway...

The other day, I checked the mail and I got a paper survey from the DNC. I open it up all excited because I want to share my opinions. I actually felt like they were interested in my thoughts and opinions. So the first page is typical survey questions then I turn it over and there it is, they want money. Not only do they want money, I have to pay at least $3 to have my survey answers recorded.

WTF? I have to pay the DNC to have my survey answers recorded? That is the most fucked up thing.

So when Hillary Clinton was running for president, she was raising all this money for the Democratic Party. However, I do not know what they used the money for. It sure wasn't for the District 5 candidate. I don't know who it is off the top of my head. I know one thing on Facebook, I was seeing ads for Hillary Clinton, Donald Trump, Gary Johnson, Glenn Thompson and Pat Toomey. Who is missing from this Katie McGinty and the district 5 candidate. And I know from running TARGETED Facebook ads for Jaded Eklipse, they are a fraction of the cost then running TV ads. So apparently whatever money was raised for the last election cycle was not used to facilitate democrats in this state.

But let's go even smaller, state governments. I was inundated with Republican mailers for state representatives and only once did I receive something from a Democrat candidate. Would you believe the Republican won? Again not even targeted ads on the web for any democratic candidate except for Hillary Clinton, not even Katie McGinty who was running for senator.

Look, I  may not have a degree in marketing but something seems off. Here I am a prime target, female, mid-thirties who likes Hillary Clinton on Facebook and I know if I can do targeted ads for Jaded Eklipse so can others. Sorry I don't vote for letters, I vote for people. I will have vote for people across party lines.

You wonder why the Democrat party is not cohesive? Instead of cultivating the movers and shakers in the bottom of government, they only care about the top dog. Why the fuck would I give money to the DNC when that money  definitely does not help the smaller offices, the ones that actually deal with the people.

Until next time...

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

And Spring Comes- Again

Today, I was reading The Taming of the Shrew, there was a pork roast in the Crock-Pot, and sunshine streamed in the western facing windows. And it really did feel like spring. Of course it felt like spring last month as well. Last week, in fact last Monday, we were supposed to get the worst snow storm of the year.  There was a winter weather warning and everything. We got some snow, definitely not as much as they were calling for, but for some reason school was cancelled for two days. Now there are only patches that dot the emerging green grass.

I live in the north central mountains, we used to get a lot of snow.  Snow that would start sometime in late October and stay on the ground for most of the winter through March. We used to have several snow storms in one season. And now, I am not sure how the Tussey Mountain makes enough money to stay open. Of course they can make snow. And although I am not a skier, I even know the fresh powder is better for skiing the man-made snow is more slippery.

I am only 36, but I remember Pennsylvania being a lot more snowy than it is now.  There is something changing with the weather and weather patterns. And my time on earth is only speck to the age of the earth. That is something to think about.

There's a lot I want to say like "fuck the government" but I think I should formulate a much better post than Fuck the Government. I believe it, though. And I think all the dipshits in congress should make DC minimum wage. It's funny to think we are supposed to be their bosses but we don't get a say in their pay. Enough about that, I'm not in the mood for government chit chat. What is there left to say?

This past weekend, I celebrated my fourth wedding anniversary. We've been together for 16 years though, which is a lifetime or it seems like it. We decided to spend our time in Maryland. We went to Rocky Gap, a casino resort in Cumberland and I won $193 on one machine, playing a fifty cents minimum bet. BOOM. That was pretty awesome, and  I am not very lucky at the casino, so this was amazing.

Well that's enough for today. I want to work on Solider Girl, I am getting so close to finishing it.

Till next time...

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Atomic Dust in Starlight

toothless piloting across
the wasteland, clutching fresh
photographs of  lonely
degeneration
your dusty reminder

thirty highway rest
stops come and go
while you travel
west, collaborating mirages
of smiles and birthday cakes
hurricane wanderlust

a half-charred guide
disseminating the Milky Way
you find eyes in card
board box windows
but keep moving
there’s nothing to see here
but the same illusion

Saturday, March 11, 2017

Why do People Hate Poor People?

If you haven't yet, check out this article on The Washington Post.

Of course hating poor people is nothing new. There are these mythical people called Welfare Queens, living in penthouses, driving Caddies, all on the government's dime. Oh wait,  they are not mythical-just members of congress.

Back to the notion that all poor people are lazy and if they would only 12 jobs they may get out of poverty. I am not saying there are abusers because there are just not as much as you think.

What makes people (which I am guessing those people are middle class. Of course who knows it seems like everyone hates poor people even richer poor people) hate poor people?

I know- it's jealously. Working poor and poor people live in luxurious  house trailers, apartments and run down houses. It totally makes sense. Then  there are those who get section 8 which help low income people pay for rent, again they are not living in some gated community. And you think your Homeowner's Association has a lot of rules? Section  8 housing has even more rules.

Poor people get food stamps. Free lobster, steak and caviar. Even if a poor person did buy that, it will cut into their monthly allowance and most people don't want to waste their money when they can buy processed food for a fraction of the cost.

Many of the beneficiaries of food stamps are disabled, elderly and children. While a smaller percentage are parents of children and even a small percentage are single able-bodied adults, who can only be on the program for a short amount of time. So if you want the elderly and children working for food because they are such a drain on society that kind of sounds like the turn of the 20th century.  For many people on the program they get whatever on food stamps and buy food for the month. There are multiple studies showing toward the end of the month, calorie intake in much less.

Poor people get Medicare. I have been saying this the 90's. We need Medicare for all. By raising the Medicare tax, every worker (even those wretched working poor people) pays into Medicare. I believe this, healthcare should be for everyone. We know it will benefit everyone.

And who are those working poor? They work at McDonald's, clean your $100 hotel room, serve you coffee, serve you dinner, anytime you buy anything in a store from a person who is not management. They pump your gas and check your oil. They may even work for a small business. A couple of years ago, we had half our roof replaced. The two guys that did it made $10 an hour. That's only$1600/ a month and $19,200 a year, which is the high end of the working poor.

All I ever hear is if poor people would do this and that? And what about you? Maybe you should be more appreciative of the money you do have and things you can buy. To a poor person, a person making $50K a year is rich. If you have a gorgeous house and your mortgage is too high, well isn't that your choice? You can spend money the way you choose and for some reason people will pay for their expensive phones and 9000 channels they never watch at the cost of food, and then complain about how rough it is for them.  I can safely say any poor person would rather have your problems then their own. And poor people, at least those that work (not the ones on SSI/SSDI) want to move up. Want to make more money, move to a better place. Do you think they enjoy making pittance wages? Do you think they love getting food stamps? No.

You want less people on the system, then why not pay them more?


Thursday, March 9, 2017

Mercy

They sent him a letter and told him God was fake. How could he be real when they were all sick and dying of cancer. Pastor James O’Keefe, cleaned his semi-automatics and read the letter again. He sent each a personal letter asking them to come to service one last time. There would be no scripture reading but fellowship and free food. Free for them anyway since he just maxed out his credit card for the food, money he could never pay back since there would be no one left at the church to put money in the coffers. How could they do this to him?

On Sunday,  he opened the doors to the small white church. They filed in. Once they got their overflowing plates, they took their seats. As promised, there were no prayers or scripture readings. Instead Pastor James O’Keefe chained the doors. No one was leaving.

His one begotten flock laughed and delighted themselves as he stood guard at the door.  No one bothered to talk to him or even look his way. What the hell happened to these people? First they turn their backs on God, then on him. It was not his fault or God’s for that matter that these people were sick. There was always heaven and eternal life without pain.

Pastor O’Keefe looked outside the church windows, watching two birds chase each other. A gun shot went off. People screamed. He turned his attention back. John Masterson stood on the table holding two revolvers.

“John?” Asked his wife, whom he shot without thinking twice about it. More people screamed.

“This your fault!” John screamed. “We are sick because you all didn’t want to fight the company. I told you, I told you all they were making us sick.”

He fired more rounds. People ran to the door.

Pastor O’Keefe took out his guns and the flock stopped.

“John, the lord has a plan for all of us. We will be granted the highest places in heaven,” the pastor said.

“Amen,” a couple of others agreed.

“You believe that shit, Pastor? That God wants us sick and dying. Why us? Why anyone? What the fuck kind of God is that? Why does he love the rich ones more?”

“How do you know that he does? That he loves us all equally?”

“Shoot him, Pastor,” Nancy the organist said.

“While we are coughing up our blood, they are breathing fine, some fucking god,” John yelled.

And some of the congregation gave an even heartier “Amen”

“John get down from there and let’s talk,” the pastor said.

“Talking is done,” as he unloaded his revolvers shooting people.

“Save us,” someone said.

The pastor shook his head, “I tried to save you once,  but you left.”

John stopped firing. Half the people were dead. He took the pistol turned it on himself. No one stopped him and he fired the last shot.

“Maybe you all need mercy,” the pastor said and shot the rest of them dead.

Saturday, March 4, 2017

Damn, It's Winter Again

This week I was on break and I had all these big plans of getting so much work done. It was going to be epic. I was going to be productive and write and edit. Okay so I did some writing and editing, but I didn't get done nearly as much as I wanted.

I've been stuck with Solider Girl off an on this whole week and I really thought I would have the first draft done this week. No. Close- maybe. I broke through the block and I had idea rolling I am hoping to spend more than a half hour writing it tonight. More than likely it will be a Kindle book because it is already a novella. It's not going to turn into a novel. I have two more large projects I want to finish before starting new ones, unless it is a short story or poem. I started a story called Love Always Seaside Heights. I'm not too far into that one yet; I have a feeling it will also be a novella and not a novel. And finally, there is a novel I have been working on for the last several years called The State of Ares a post-modern Utopian/dystopian novel. It will definitely hit novel status because it already has 30,000 words written with plenty more to go.

I also planned on pumping out a bunch of Suburban Vampires and that didn't happen at all. Luckily, I do have a bunch of chapter stockpiled for at least eight weeks.

Revising Havana is not  going well. I wrote the entire thing without any kind of break Many times in the rough draft of a novel, I will at least put *** between scenes. Later on, I move stuff around and make chapters, often times keeping the scene breaks. Havana was not created like the others. For one it is more of a stream of conscious novel. I asked people on Facebook and many said they need something, chapters or whatever. So I am sort of randomly breaking the novel into 3,000-4,000 parts and calling it a chapter. Though it doesn't feel right to me, not for this novel anyway. Another is the word count, last I looked Havana  is around 55,000 words, which is kind of slim. It seems like it should be more but it again it doesn't feel right. It is a YA/new adult novel and maybe the word count is sufficient for that age group. I want to get the first revisions done and give to a couple of people who said they would read it.

I wonder, should I stick with my gut instinct  or just assume I am wrong?

Well that's about all today, back to the computer screen.

Till next time...


Thursday, March 2, 2017

Sanctioned Shadows by JM Scott FREE Through March, 6 2017

Hey all, Last week I released my 17th Kindle book Sanctioned Shadows, which has been an on-going project for a little more than a year now.  Is there a record for the most self-published Kindle books? If so, I should try and beat it.

Anyway, Sanctioned Shadows is FREE in all Kindle markets until March 6, 2017.  Some stories in this book are around 5 years old others are more recent. There is a maturity in this collection of stories as opposed my other story collections. Many I have tweaked and tweaked again until I felt they were the best I could possibly do (and I had to beat down Negative Nancy as she always like to say my stories are boring and suck).

Sanctioned Shadows is a collection of 15 stories that explore humanity's dark side. When I began to collect and write stories for  this short story collection, I had plans of calling the collection "Depravity" but the title, Sanctioned Shadows, popped in my head and I think it fits better.

Let's take a closer look at each of the 15 tales.

"Train Number 9" This is one of my favorite stories in the collection. It was inspired by a true event, of a man beating another man with a hammer on a Septa train. However, the story is pure fiction. Centered around this one event, the story unfolds from different points of view of the other passengers, the victim and the beater.

"A Fresh Start" In this flash fiction story, Enola is homeless and gets s job as a phone sex operator but things don't work out. And then she makes a decision to change her life.

"Lifeboat"  This is a story of guilt, obsession and suicide. Amanda's toxic relationship with her best friend, Andy comes to an end when he kills himself. Amanda weaves the backstory with how she is feeling after she learns of his suicide.

"Songbird's Last Delivery" Tim is a gay high school senior who prefers to stay in the proverbial closet until college. That is until Caleb, star baseball player, assaults him. As mild-mannered Tim tries to prevent another assault, he does something that can never be taken back.

"Gunpoint" Former addict and drug dealer, Easter Jackson, is in a pickle when she recognizes the guy who robs her at gunpoint at the store she works at. The guy is her longtime crush and she doesn't turn him in. Easter's voice is unique and memorable and you can't help but to root for everything to turn out for Easter.

"A Place for You" Timid the leprechaun joins a midget fight club to earn money.

"Sam's Slumber Party" Samara is a loyal employee that is until she takes her colleagues hostage on the overnight shift. Even the sweet ones snap at one time or another.

"Saturation" Lia is a divorced woman who decides to skinny dip one summer night at the local lake. But Lia comes to realize what happiness is a little too late.

"Letting Go of Steffi"  Chip Waters is obsessed with Steffi, the rich girl next door, and this affects his future lovers. And then one day, Chip sees the world for what it is.

"For Love's Sake Alone" An abusive woman and her man. He takes things into his own hands and finds freedom.

"Sometimes the Garbage Must be Buried for Things to Grow" Skyler Michelle can't get over her ex. But he shows up one night and records their love making to blackmail Skyler's mother for money. The story doesn't end there and there is more to it, but I don't want to give a lot away. The ending for this one was recently gutted and rewritten.

"Birthday Girl" It's Solara's birthday and she works at the soda factory.  Evan used to work at the soda factory but got himself fired when his ex-girlfriend became supervisor. Evan has a brilliant plan for revenge but sweet Solara finds herself the victim.

"June 29" One thing that is pretty common in this collection is the snapshot collection of various viewpoints. Like "Train Number 9" this story is told from various viewpoints about a plane crash.

"2166" Two women touch a fern in the woods and are transported a 150 years in the future. And even though they are in the same town everything is in ruins and the women have to try and survive in this bleak future world.

"Save my Soul" This is my other favorite story. A grieving dad has a near death experience where he sees his son in an inbetween place. His sons wants to trade places where the son goes to "heaven" and the dad's soul is stuck in the inbetween place for a 100 years.

Please grab a copy of this book and when you are done, could you leave a review? I think it was Hemingway who said we [writers] are always apprentices in a craft and never become masters. With that I am always learning. Sure, I had a bunch of classes but they can only teach so much. People reading my work and telling what worked and what didn't will go beyond the classroom for learning on this craft. This craft I call writing, which is, for better or for worse, my life.

Till next time....