15 Mar

Being Five Times Positive with Your Writing

Banner - Fountain PenIn relationship psychology, there is this thing called the “five times positive”-rule. It says that for any relationship to remain positive over time, you need to have at least five times as many positive interactions as negative ones.

This is most commonly applied to parenting. If you yell at your kid once you have to make sure to have five positive play-dates with them before you yell at them again.

Otherwise, you’re going to get into recurring battles with your kids and your life will turn into a living hell.

Trust me on that one. Read More

08 Mar

Knowing What Keeps You Sane

Banner: Meditation at the lakeshoreWe humans are pretty good at finding the negative sides of our lives. All the little annoyances that litter our days. Those tiny angers we encounter on the road, at work,  at home.

We can’t avoid them, no matter how we try.

But that’s OK. Our brains are made that way. What makes life good is figuring out those parts that keep you afloat when everything else is dragging you down. Read More

01 Mar

How do you write?

Banner - Fountain PenHow do you write? Not now and then. Not because someone forces you to. How do you write, as often, and as productively, as you would like?

Fun, plain and simple.

Removing the “must” part from “I must write,” turning it into a simple “I write.”

For me, fun is what made that happen. No pressure, no self-recrimination, no “the world should be this way, and I should be that way with it.” Just plain fun. Read More

22 Feb

So I’ve Written 1 000 000 Words and I Feel Fine – OR – My 6-Year Journey from Wannabe to Neo-Pro, a Lurid Tale of Fiction, Finance, and Fatalism

Banner: running in the snow

So I’ve written a million words.

That’s 1 000 000 words.

It’s a big number. If I wrote a word per second, every second, without breaks for eating, sleeping, or watching Netflix, it would take me 11 days, 13 hours, and 35 minutes to write it.

If I did take breaks, it would take me 6 years. Which is what I did.

I’m going to tell you exactly how it went, what I earned, and where I got Kicked in the Shin by Life, Universe, and SFF legend Jay Lake’s Tub. Also, exactly how many rejections I’ve gotten.

Read on. Read More

19 Feb

Friday Links * 2: Creating Place Names

Banner: Movie clickYearghttoon. Wintrufeil. Yeah, we should all make better place names when we’re world building. This will give you the how and why of place name etymology. Also, it’s aimed at young roleplayers. Meaning lots of rapid transitions and some cursing. But the underlying content is quite interesting. Just remember to pause to write down the lists on a separate piece of paper. Read More

15 Feb

Your Brain as a Group of Warring Tribes

Banner - rowersOnce upon a time in the dark ages of economic history, the human being was a rational agent.

We evaluated what we want, and found the cheapest way to get it. This, of course, had nothing to do with how humans act in reality. Instead, there came the much simplified theory of behavioral rewards.

It said that the brain creates neural pathways, using dopamine to reinforce or suppress them based on the rewards it’s received. This, too, proved wrong. Read More