Login Register Our Team Submission Guidelines Contact FAQs Terms of Use

Stubborn Characters When Writing… and Knitting

Although few would guess it, I am in fact a very methodical writer. I always start with an outline, whether it’s a short one that I can hold in my head or a longer one that I have to write out. Over my years as a lawyer, I’ve written thousands of outlines as a predicate to legal briefs and memos. On occasion, I’ll discover that an argument I set up in outline form doesn’t work in prose, but I can usually make it right just by reorganizing my ideas to improve the flow.

Writing a novel is proving to be very different. I came up with a story based upon my family’s experiences in Europe over the course of the latter part of the 19th century and the first two-thirds of the 20th century — and I put it in outline form. I then built up details about each character and put that information into the outline. Lastly, I did the historical research and into the outline went the history too.

The Author’s Dilemma: Introducing Morality Into the Writing

One of my cheap thrills is watching the CW show Supernatural. The interaction between brothers Sam and Dean Winchester and their friends, whether angel, demon, witch, or even human, along with imaginative and sometimes incredibly funny plots, has made it an engaging viewing experience.

In addition to the standard horror show and comedy shticks, the long-running show occasionally grapples with moral issues, in no small part because most episodes have the brothers and their friends killing “ghoulies and ghosties and long-leggedy beasties and things that go bump in the night.” Usually the monsters are presented as appropriately evil, but there have been times when these evil monsters have been trying to reform — and the brothers sometimes offed them anyway. Fun stuff, as I said…

So Where Are You On the Parenting Spectrum: Bulldozer, Helicopter Or Free Range?

Lori Loughlin is, of course, the er girl du jour for “bulldozer” (aka “snowplow”) parenting, where mom and/or dad simply annihilate all obstacles in the child’s path. We can all agree disaster that way lies; for both parent and child. Even if no legal lines are crossed – or you are at least not caught crossing them – the emotional and psychological damage can be deep and permanent.

The New Devil’s Dictionary: A Quick Look at the Lexicon of the Left

Beginning in 1881, and extending up through 1906, the American newspaper writer and noted cynic Ambrose Bierce compiled what he called “The Devil’s Dictionary”. It contained wry and sometimes humorous, but always cynical, definitions of words and phrases. The copyright has long since expired, and the entire slim volume can be found at no cost on a number of internet sites.

Bierce suggested his definitions were what people really meant in practice, as opposed to the formal dictionary definitions of the same terms.

One of my favorites is his definition of “bigot.” He wrote that it means “[o]ne who is obstinately and zealously attached to an opinion you do not entertain.”

Although Bierce wrote this definition well over 100 years ago, the mentality that inspired his biting definition is very much with us. This column will offer some examples of how our political left really defines some terms commonly in use, even though the copy of “Webster’s” on your desk won’t include them.

Shamed Writer-Director James Gunn Is Back For ‘Guardians of the Galaxy 3’ Are We Groot?

Disney reinstating James Gunn as the writer-director of Guardians of the Galaxy 3 ignited a controversy reaching beyond the tarnishing of Disney’s brand. It sparks a question, to which the answer is a social-political barometer. Do we really want to trade redemption for social assassination? 

How to Succeed without Really Trying

Recently, on YouTube, I watched a stage performance of the musical, “How to Succeed in Business without Really Trying”. One of my favorite scenes in the play is the one in which Ponty the window-washer worms his way into the Executive Suite by convincing the company president he is a Groundhog, i.e., a graduate of “Old Ivy”. Together, they sing the fight song, which exhorts the football team to “rip, rip, rip the Chipmunk off the field.”

Still an Idiot with a Machine Gun after All These Years

Great Moments in Chaos and Order, Part V

Paul Ehrlich is infamously attached to the notion that providing cheap fuel to the masses would be like giving an idiot a machine gun. The Left insists that idiot is still with us, primarily in the heartland where regular folks go about their lives with common sense appreciation for fossil fuels that power a standard of living never before seen in human history. In Ehrlich’s 1968 The Population Bomb, he predicted famine for America, starvation for millions before the unleashing of the 1970s Disco rage. Those of us remaining would be eating bark and stuffing old newspapers in our boots to stay warm from the sneaky, man-induced new ice age. Imagine, never to be thrilled on the dance floor by the bass drum clocking in at 120 beats per minute, anchoring the melodies of Boz Scaggs and the Bee Gees by thousands of lounge bands across the land.

Definitely Christian in Spite of the Distortions

Great Moments in Chaos and Order, Part IV

My title is a twist on Mr. Spock’s announcement to the enterprise crew that the ugly creature that had attacked them was still a human being: “Definitely humanoid in spite of the distortion,” says Spock in a first season episode of Star Trek, titled “Miri” where the landing party on a faraway planet remains shocked by the hideous creature still babbling inanities after being subdued. Likewise, the American Left is Christian to the core, in spite of the distortions, and no matter how often they attack Christians in film, politics and education.

As the children of the French revolution, Karl Marx, and 19thcentury American progressivism, today’s Left hold dear the heart of the New Testament, Love thy Neighbor, while discarding the rest of the Bible, including love for an old guy named God. Like a skilled arranger, they spot the hook in a great score, a musical hook that lovingly insists to help the poor and the oppressed. That accomplished, they deep-six the rest of the Holy Book and anything greater than the state (Check out Diane Feinstein’s remark to judicial appointment Amy Coney Barrett for the most recent example.)

When the Reign of Terror Is Part of Your DNA

Great Moments in Chaos and Order, Part III: These Guys Deserve Each Other

The European Social Survey–a science group and past winners of The Descartes Prize, Europe’s annual science award—showed in 2018 that 96% of the French population believed climate change was occurring. The same survey also said that the French weren’t losing much sleep over the notion of cataclysmic global warming. But the citizens forgot about nervous elites like President Macron, who not only believed in the bad science of media-hyped manmade planet warming, but was terrified for France and, most importantly, for the world. Macron’s one of many church-going elitists rushing across our “burning planet” scaring everyone to abandon fossil fuels through policies like the Paris Climate Accords.

Great Moments in Global Warming

Great Moments in Chaos and Order, Part II: Come In From the Cold

In Gangster Town, book three of my American Blackout series, a courtroom drama weaves inside the main storyline of slavery’s return. On trial is a university professor who’s been accused of being skeptical of manmade global warming and not sufficiently aggressive in implanting in her students the meme that the debate’s over. In this fictional world of society’s collapse after an EMP attack and people dying of starvation, disease, and at the hands of criminal enterprises, the leaders in Cincinnati still find the energy to pump up their kangaroo court in rare moments of stability.

Click here for Part 1 of this series, “From the Big Bang to Sinatra’s ‘Night and Day.’” Purchase Gangster Town here on Amazon. Also check out this sample from Pulse of the Goddess: American Blackout Book 1 and the opening chapters from book 2, Slaves Beneath the Stars.

Older Posts