Friday, December 30, 2011

A Life of Consequence

It’s the end of the year and it usually brings an overabundance of introspection and reflection and for me it’s not just “what did I accomplish this year” but I find I’m looking at the big picture.  Is my life shaping up the way I want it to?  Am I having an impact on things that matter to me?  Am I positioning myself to be able to influence things that are important to me?  I’m approaching the big 5 0 and that may have something to do with it.
I can remember being a fresh-faced lieutenant and looking at what seemed an endless dark tunnel of training and hoop jumping to get where I wanted to be.  It was great to finally get through that tunnel and into the daylight again.  It took years of hard work and dedication to see the light at the end, but I made it through.  The thing is, once I got over the fact that I had achieved my initial goals, I found that I was sitting on a knoll looking down at several more tunnel entrances.  It had opened up possibilities and I had choices but I was going to have to go through more training and learning if I chose to come down off the knoll.   It was nice sitting there for awhile, basking in the sunlight, but eventually you want more challenges.  You find that you are not fulfilled for whatever reason.  Maybe you aren’t doing what will really make you happy or have the impact that you want.  You have to choose a new tunnel and start the process all over.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Slacking and Star Wars and Merry Christmas!

I've been slack this week in doing a blog post but I've been enjoying the Christmas holidays and taking a little break.  I also got into the early beta and then early release of Star Wars: The Old Republic and have spent way too much time playing it.  It is absolutely what Star War Galaxies should have been.  The writing is fantastic, the voice acting is great and every quest has at least one cutscene.  The graphics are beautiful and the gameplay seems mostly balanced but the jury is still out on that one.  Overall I think Bioware hit a homerun with it.  The best part is my family is playing and we are doing battles together!  Five out of six of us are playing.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Calling all cars ... err... beta readers!


I am mere weeks away from having my novel ready for Beta Readers.   My excitement is palpable.  I wasn’t this excited when I finished the 1st draft, but the thought that I can actually start the agent/publisher search for real is something I’ve looked forward to for a long time.  Before that happens I’d like to get the book into the hands of a few more seasoned readers that know my genres.   If you like vampires and Sci Fi adventure then this book may be up your alley.  It’s a character driven story, though, not a Michael Bey movie.   I would like to get some readers that like science fiction and can give constructive feedback.  I’m actually still looking for one more writing partner if anyone is interested in swapping some comprehensive edits.   Hiring an editor for a comprehensive edit will run about a grand and that’s nothing to sneeze at.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

The Spark of Searching for Extraterrestrial Life

Charlie Stross pointed out an article and commentary that peaked my interest, dealing with SETI and the Fermi Paradox. The article was The Fermi Paradox, Self-Replicating Probes, and the Interstellar Transportation Bandwidth by Keith Wiley. Wiley's article was to do with the likelihood of Intelligent Aliens or lack thereof. 

If you aren't familiar with the Fermi Paradox, it basically states that the likelihood of intelligent life in the galaxy is high, given the huge number of stars and therefore planets in our galaxy, that intelligent extraterrestrial life should have been to visit us by now or at least left their evidence and yet we haven't found clue one.  There are lots of theories as to why and these essays delve into those arguments.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Hero Shmero

Is it too much to ask that something great happen in our lives?   I mean monumental.   I think that most of us went through that phase in our early teens when we KNEW we were destined for great things.   We were handpicked to lead lives of consequence.   As I approach midlife and realize that the likelihood is lessening, I still find myself drawn to themes of greatness.
I can remember being a teenager and reading Lord of the Rings and learning the elvish alphabet.  My friends and I developed these back stories about our elvish character selves.  We felt like we had a secret knowledge that we were really going to be something special someday.  Of course it was fantasy, but I wonder if that is something that fades with time or is it that thing that draws us to stories of the same theme, whether it’s a movie or a book or an old wives tale.