Hints And Tips

A 6-post collection

Belief in Magical Accessories

There's nothing much going on in my life at the moment, beyond the usual routine and angsting about whatever I'm publishing or trying to translate at the moment, so I thought I'd talk about a little something that bothers me about humanity.

The belief in talent by osmosis via Stuff. Stuff, in this case, is either a particular piece of hardware, or software. Something that somebody famous uses to do the thing you love. Now, quite a lot of people believe that if they have that Stuff, they will magically become as talented as Famous Person and their metaphorical ship will come in.

I'm not entirely certain that anyone knows that this is complete and utter bullshit. Famous Person probably worked their arse off at whatever thing they do for years before they could justify the purchase of the Stuff they use to do the thing. Nobody buys Stuff and becomes instantly talented. Sure, Famous Person makes it look easy, but having Stuff does not a talent make.

Sorry, but it takes learning how Stuff works and then doing something cool with it.

For example: For absolute years, I wrote fictions inside palm-sized notebooks I picked up in dollar shops, and preferably any pen I could get for free. This was because I was as broke as fuck, and couldn't afford anything better.

For a while, I had one of those palmtop assistant devices that were hot in the mid-90's, but writing in that, transferring files, updating everything and keeping versions current was a royal pain in the butt.

Then I got hold of a much-abused and possibly third-hand laptop. Comparative paradise, but I still had to hook one up to the other to transfer files around and actually distribute those things wherever.

What I have now is a pre-loved Macbook and everything I'm working on saved to the Cloud thanks to Google Drive and Google Docs. I've gone through MSWord (the Windoze system around it died too often for me), Text Wrangler, Pages, and MacDown just to name a few. Now I use StackEdit as a Chrome add-on to edit everything in MarkDown which is amazingly similar to how I used to encode my ASCII fanfictions back in the day.

I am by no means a Famous Person. I do allow that I could be in the future. I will forever list my useful toolbox as: an imagination, a means to write, and a means to carry that with you wherever. The rest of it is just details.

One writer I know of wrote a book by painting it. Having a keyboard didn't allow them to properly process things at their best speed. Some writers dictate everything because (a) they can't type, (b) they can't type fast enough, or (c) drastic hand pain. I've done something like this with speech-to-text when I borked my wrists up. Speech-to-text is still a pain in the butt.

I prefer not to do it. Someone else may have an absolute ball. Q: Who's wrong about this? A: Nobody.

Famous Person makes it look so easy because they were years at it before they found the Stuff that they worked with best. That Stuff may well fit you like a barb-wire undergarment that's two sizes in the wrong direction.

First, above all things, have an imagination. Then do something cool with it. Learn the skills you need to do the thing. Try different Stuff to do that thing with. Find what fits.

And keep going. Persistence is key to making it somewhere with the thing you do.

I... am still persisting.

3 Ways to Keep Yourself Safe When You're Not Ready to Leave Your Abusive Partner

3 Ways to Keep Yourself Safe When You're Not Ready to Leave Your Abusive Partner






In addition to what's mentioned in this link, we have some info to help folks make a plan to stay safe when leaving an abusive relationship, and when they can't leave just yet: The Scarleteen Safety Plan

Seriously, I've only been able to skim this article so far, but I definitely plan on reading the whole thing later

If you're being abused

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Tips for waitresses who are hit on by the douchebros who read "How to Hit On Waitresses"

  1. Spit in his food

  2. Spit in his beverage

  3. If menstruating, add some ‘menses sauce’ to his order [Bonus, it may make him completely subservient to your will]

  4. Take a discrete video of his disgusting behaviour and send it to his mom’s Facebook page

  5. Melodramatically act like you’re madly in love with him. Then immediately declare that your “father the king” will have him executed in various horrible ways. Describe them in gut-churning detail. Continue

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Frugality Check: Benefits of line-drying

I’ve been cleaning my house, lately [it’s mostly OK now BTW] and in the process, I have been doing absolute shittons of laundry. Y'know, mostly because there were drifts of dirty clothes in there that were a foot deep.

I had been doing a load a day, but thanks to my unsister, Powerhouse, I’ve been going through load after load after load. And putting it all on the clothesline to benefit from the absolutely vicious summer

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I'm losing weight at last!

I started this year at 95.4kg, just a few small kilos away from 100kg. I made a resolution to lose weight and get fitter, so immediately I went out and stuffed myself for the annual new years’ rello visit.

Hubby didn’t help, either. Next night, he took me out to Sizzler’s.

Today [the 5th of Jan] is the day where I finally dipped below my starting weight. I’m now 95.2kg. You might not

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Compost Hint: Empty Your Mulch Bucket Often

Composting and mulching is a natural process involving organic waste. And as such, it is almost inevitable to attract… little visitors.

Insect visitors.

That lay eggs in your mulch bucket.

I don’t want to be too gross about things [hence the lack of instructional pictures] but I’ve been a little too busy, sore and tired to go empty the mulch bucket into the compost bin, these last few days.

That bit me in the butt.

Big time.

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