In which fear is stupid

IMG_6721Holy cow, that tablecloth has gotten raggedy.

I had an idle thought the other day and put it on Twitter– I wonder what kind of artist I could be if I drew something every day for a year, it said– and now suddenly I own a sketchbook.

Well, “suddenly” if agonized over the idea of spending $5 on a sketchbook for two days counts as “suddenly.”  I mean, as projects go, this isn’t much of one, right?  I’m not talking about full-blown landscapes or some shit, just, like, a quick sketch every day to elevate my ability to draw from not the worst artist on the planet to maybe somewhere in the top half of humanity.  I’m not about to start a webcomic or anything, although I’ll admit thinking about the first Questionable Content vs. how it looks now as a perfect example of what practice can do for someone.

So I own an inexpensive, yet reasonably robust sketchbook, and I bought some new pencils, which probably wasn’t strictly necessary but hey, pencils.  And all I have to do is draw something.  I don’t even really have to do it every day!  Just draw some shit once in a while!  Like, I get to set the rules!

And I put the sketchbook down, because I found the idea terrifying, and here I am blogging about it instead of just picking up a pencil and drawing something simple and calling it a day.

It’s so weird how hard I work (we work?  It’s not just me, right?) to hold myself back sometimes.


EDIT:  Boom.  Don’t expect me to post these too frequently, if I even continue with the project (I’d estimate no more than a 50% chance this lasts longer than a few days) but at least I did it once:

IMG_6723

Also, I need pencils with better erasers, as you can tell from Uncle Grandpa’s incorrectly-misshapen head up there.

blech

So I finally gave up and bailed on Oathbringer last night, after trying to read an online synopsis to see if the book was going to get any more exciting.  I couldn’t even get through the damn synopsis. I’ve never had a series I enjoyed go this bad this fast, and I’m still kind of shocked by the whole thing.

I’m aware that I’m probably overreacting just a little bit to the idea that I wasn’t going to finish reading a book, by the way, but still.  I had really been looking forward to this one.

Yesterday there was probably still a foot of snow in my front yard.  This morning when I got up it was gone, every last flake, and it was rainy and in the mid- to high fifties all day today, which probably represents the fastest I’ve ever seen this place switch seasons.  I mean, the joke about northern Indiana is and always has been that if you don’t like the weather you should wait a week, but holy shit.

I dunno.  I’ve kinda been in a haze all day; I took a three-hour nap this afternoon for no better reason than I couldn’t come up with anything else to do.  Hopefully tomorrow will be more interesting.

Oh so that’s what’s bugging me

xhss9So I’m reading this book right now.  It’s the third book in a series that I think is going to be seven or ten books long, it’s 1200 fucking pages long, and the two books before it were both also over a thousand pages long.  I started it right around the first of the year and I’m barely a quarter of the way through the thing.  I feel like I sailed through the first two, and I really enjoyed reading them.  That said, it’s been a while, and I read so much that my recall is not always great.  At first, I thought that was the reason that this book felt like a slog– that I just didn’t remember the story well enough from the previous books and it was holding me back.

There really shoulda been a goddamn recap chapter in the front.  I mean, shit, your book is already twelve hundred pages long, maybe you give me another 15 to recap the previous 2200 pages in the other two books?  It’d be nice.

Something hit me about this book last night.  The big conflict in this one (so far) appears to be that the race (fantasy book, remember, so literal non-human race) that humans have basically been using as slaves since time immemorial have, for lack of a better word, woken up.  They were basically big strong mute servants until recently and now they’ve got their minds back.  And they are, rather understandably, somewhat pissed about the whole centuries of slavery thing, and so there’s a bit of Kill!  All!  Humans! going on out there.

The book expects me to be on the side of the humans in this conflict.  All of the main characters are human.  There’s been at least one, maybe two POV characters from the other side in previous books but he’s either dead or just hasn’t shown up; I literally don’t remember.

I am not on the side of the humans in this conflict.

There are hints that one character is going to take the side of the newly-awakened slave race, but those same hints imply that he is going to lead them, and I kinda don’t feel like a white savior narrative is going to improve this book any.

Oh, and the series has always explicitly associated blue eyes with social status, which I was willing to ignore the implications of previously but now is kinda looking upsetting given recent developments.  Like, characters’ eyes literally change color to blue if they achieve certain abilities.

So right now I’m at war, with my 2500-page investment along with a healthy dose of “give the rest of the book a chance; this may not work out the way it seems like it’s going to” on the one hand, and literally ten other books that I’d like to start reading and nine hundred more pages of this one to slog through on the other.

Feel free to provide advice if you’d like.

(Also: I’m not a hundred percent sure why I’m effectively subtweeting the actual book here; my Goodreads feed isn’t exactly a hidden thing.  But that’s how the post came out.  I dunno.)

STATION IDENTIFICATION: Infinitefreetime.com

I’m Luther Siler.  I’m a writer and an editor.  Welcome to my blog, infinitefreetime.com.

I’ve written several books you might be interested in, ranging from short story collections to near-future science fiction to fantasy space opera to nonfiction, all available as ebooks or in print from Amazon.  Autographed books can be ordered straight from me as well.

I can be found in several different places on the Internet.  Here’s the important ones:

  • You can follow me on Twitter, @nfinitefreetime, here or just click the “follow” button on the right side of the page.  Warning: Twitter is where Politics Luther hangs out.  I generally follow back if I can tell you’re a human being.
  • Sign up for my mailing list here.
  • My author page on Goodreads is here. I accept any and all friend requests.
  • My official Author page on Amazon is located here.
  • Feel free to Like the (sadly underutilized) Luther Siler Facebook page here.  It’s mostly used as a reblogger for posts.
  • And, of course, you’re already at infinitefreetime.com, my blog.  You can click here to be taken to a random post.

Thanks for reading!

Prostetnic hi-res cropped