Helpful Notes on Writing from My Social Tab in Gmail and My Uber-geeky Feed.

“Get through a draft as quickly as possible. Hard to know the shape of the thing until you have a draft. Literally, when I wrote the last page of my first draft of Lincoln’s Melancholy I thought, Oh, shit, now I get the shape of this. But I had wasted years, literally years, writing and re-writing the first third to first half. The old writer’s rule applies: Have the courage to write badly.”

-Joshua Wolf Shenk, via Shannon from Authors Only/101 Words

Also, Trekkies Can Thank Herb Sollow for the Most Famous Plot Device.

It’s actually a framing device, but why split Tribble fur? I found this article incredibly germane to the issues I often have when trying to frame or ground a story. It’s a good read for any writer.

The Jedi Council Is Terrible (and other observations)

I think liking Star Wars requires generally disliking the Jedi Council. Those clowns are terrible when it comes down to it. Mace Windu is particularly bad, and Yoda spends the entirety of the Clone Wars “having a bad feeling about this” but never actually leading. Even Obi-Wan, who I love, is shady as hell.

The best things about The Clone Wars series are the arcs that focus on the clone troopers (especially the Domino squad characters), the droids, or Ahsoka. Also good are arcs that expand the Star Wars mythos in general, and there are plenty of those. The series also does what the prequel trilogy could not: establish Anakin as a tragic hero who spends the run up to his fall as being mostly right about everything.

Also: why does the Republic care if the Separatists leave? Also also: the clone army is Republic state-sanctioned slavery.

The show does a really good job showing all the flaws with the Republic and with the Council. It shows the hubris of the Jedi leadership as a main reason for their failure to sense the Sith threat. For these reasons, I love Luke’s attitude in The Last Jedi.

To put it another way: If James T. Kirk had been around to Kobayashi Maru the Jedi Council every now and then, Palpatine would have been arrested within the first ten minutes of Attack of the Clones.

Parks & Trek

According to my wife, on this day four years ago:

“Chris and I are theorizing about a space-based show called Parks & Trek, in which Ron Swanson is the greatest Starfleet captain in history for his strict adherence to the Prime Directive.”

Honestly, this is still a great idea.

To Boldly Go Where No Beard has Gone Before

This is from 2011.  I’ve had about 37 beards since then.

I’ve been getting f Zach Galifianakis love lately.  Random teenagers at Rita’s.  Kids at a fair.  Entire weddings.

A new claimant to Beard Twin has entered the fray, and this one is nothing short of amazing.

The text simply read: “I didn’t know you were in Star Trek?!”

In case you don’t know, I enjoy Star Trek.  I don’t dress up or go to conventions or anything, but I appreciate the franchise.  Maybe I comment on message boards from time to time.  Maybe I wanted to be James T. Kirk when I was a kid.  Maybe I have strong feelings about why he was the best captain and why Voyager isn’t as bad as people say it is.  Big deal.  I like narratives and monomyths, remember?  I’m in it for the craft, see?

These images look like they’re from Star Trek: The Motion Picture (1979), but it’s been a good 15 years since I’ve seen that film.  Can anyone confirm?  And yes, they were snapped with a smart phone from a television broadcast.  V’ger would be proud.

Onto the images themselves.  I just have to say: not only does this guy have my exact beard style, but he also actually really looks like me.  Perhaps my future self went to the past and filmed this scene?  I’ll find out soon.  He can’t be much older than I am now in these shots.  Who is this bearded fellow?  What is his destiny?  Memory Alpha, what say you?

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