Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Short Post and a Song #72: Funny bodega cashier who apparently hates his cat.

At a bodega with Dancho Chile:

Cashier: How old are you?

Dansmanian Devil: Twenty-five.

Cashier: Okay, I trust you. 

Dantankerous Dan: Babe, do you want anything?

Cashier: (Notices me playing with the black bodega cat.) Do you want the cat? Take it!

Me: (Laughs awkwardly and continues to pet the adorable cat.)

Cashier: (As we're leaving) Seriously, please take the cat!


"Like Ships Need the Sea" by Emily Hearn

I featured this lovely lady once before but am featuring her again since she's doing a Kickstarter for the money she needs to produce her next album. If you've got a few dollars to blow, I highly recommend kicking them in her direction. 

P.S. I know this is a few days late. Sorry, Velocininjas. This last week has been crazy. Regular blog posts will resume Sunday.

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Short Post and a Song #71: How I feel about promotional emails when I am waiting to hear about something important:


"Into the Sunshine" by Julia Nunes

I was recently introduced to Julia Nunes' music and have been happily frolicking through her YouTube archives since. Oh how I love the sound of a voice that hasn't been produced to death! The combination of a ukulele, guitar, and vocal layering here results in a wonderfully upbeat song that won't get out my head. 

I also recommend checking out "The Debt," which involves some pretty badass vocal percussion. 

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Character and Plot Development Through Drawing

I'm in the midst of conceptualizing two new projects and in both cases I've got a cast of characters and a general premise, but not much plot to speak of. I've done a vague outline for one project whose working title is The Door Under the Staircase (or DUS for short). It feels very thin though, and not terribly original. 

A bit of writerly advice: Never start writing your book unless you have the general plot in place first. With my first book I started with just a premise and no plot and the rough draft ended up being 1,000 pages long. 

While waiting for the rest of DUS's plot to come to me, I decided to work a bit more on my characters. I can already tell this is going to be a pretty character-driven story, and fluffing up the characters a bit in my mind should help me figure out where I want the plot to go.

So I did a rough (emphasis on the rough) sketch of two of my main characters:

This doodle is less about what the characters look like, and more about their relationship. Staring at it helps me to figure out where these two characters are at the start of the book, and where I want them to end up.

I hope some of my shitty drawings inspire you guys to sketch out your own characters. No matter what your level of artistic skill, having any visual representation of your characters can help you to flesh them out. 

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Short Post and a Song #70: The Glorious Smells of Brooklyn

When I went out for my morning coffee run, I overheard a group of tween girls walking ahead of me:

Girl #1: Brooklyn definitely has a smell. It smells like pee.

Girl #2: (Sniffs) I don't smell pee.

Girl #3: (Sniffs) I think it smells like Florida.

Does this mean Brooklyn smells like Florida? Or that Florida smells like pee? The girls took off walking in a different direction after that, so I guess we'll never know.


"Alive with the Glory of Love" by Say Anything

This is a great song to get you in the right mood to write a mushy, love-dovey scene. You know, the kind with kissing. Those are some of my favorite scenes to write, even if it makes me feel slightly lame to admit it. I like writing scenes with swords and kicking and punching, too, dammit.

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Short Post and a Song #69: To Catch a Predator at the Brooklyn Flea

Me: I saw the weirdest buttons at the Flea today.

Daninmaniac: Buttons?

Me: Like the kind you wear? One said, "If little girls are made of sugar and spice, why do they taste like tuna?"

Dan Rather: Oh god. Oh god.

Me: I know! It was very disturbing.

Dancelot: I bet there was somebody from To Catch a Predator hiding out at that stall. And if anyone bought the button they'd be like, "Gotcha." 

I did not think to take a photo of the button, mostly because no one should ever have to see that horrible thing again, but here's another picture from the Flea:

Brookyln, where we love America in the creepiest and most random way possible.


"Moon Song" by Scarlett Johansson and Joaquin Phoenix

Her is one of my favorite films in recent times. It explores the idea of a human finding love with an operating system in a realistic and profoundly touching way. The soundtrack is fantastic, as evidenced by this sweet little tune.