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: I bought a laptop for my new job, which will involve a lot of travel (less mysterious details after I start it). It's one of the Dell Ubuntu laptops, and so far it's worked great and didn't cost an insane amount. I got it off of Ben Pollack's recommendation.

Teenage Angst Has Paid Off Poorly: OK, time to post something real. A couple days ago I auditioned for a science fiction writer's group here in New York. In a preview of what's in store for me at Viable Paradise, they took apart my story and complained about it in helpful ways, to the extent that I'll be embarrassed if it gets accepted by the magazine I submitted it to, and published with what now appear to be glaring flaws. Which, given my previous experience with publishing, is probably par for the course, but especially distressing when combined with my obsession with determining what "really" happened within a fictional universe.

Argh, despite my promises of posting real things I'm self-censoring for stupid reasons, not telling you about the other people in the group or which story of mine got critiqued or what the most devastating critiques were. I feel like I'm talking to someone who's waiting for me to say something they can take out of context. Plus: my soul is being crushed by things to do with my mother's estate, which I don't want to talk about until they're resolved.

Okay, seriously. Real things include: tomatoes, cement. The smell of rubbing alchohol. The natural numbers, except for that bastard five.

[Comments] (1) Passport to Pimlico: The original P2P troublemaker. This was a great movie that kind of copped out at the end. I don't remember how "The Napoleon of Notting Hill" ended, which is good because that means it's time to read it again, but it probably wasn't with an "everyone just needs to pitch in" message.

Oh, that reminds me that the TV Tropes wiki has grown a lot since I looked at it last, possibly because Wikipedia's banished trivia sections are moving there. It's now a pretty useful random-browsing dictionary of craft. Which in turn reminds me of a piece of implicit feedback from the writer's group. I'm not good enough at fiction writing yet to pull off cliche parodies; they read like the actual cliches. I actually learned this with "Mallory" but I keep thinking this story's the one where I can push the envelope.


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