Thursday, August 23, 2012

Babysteps back into writing

Prior to the midglet's arrival, I spent hours of "free time" working on writing fiction. Mostly fantasy, with solid writing and weak plotting. Rereading some of it now, I still stand by individual scenes and characters, but the overall story-arcs give me pain.

Groan-worthy pain. Who-was-I-trying-to-fool pain.

Fortunately, I have a sense of humor about my own limitations, so after the pain comes laughter and head-shaking.

But in any case, after my "free time" became kid time, I convinced myself that I was a much better editor than I was a storyteller, so I might as well accept that the writer gig was never going to work out for me anyway, so I wasn't missing anything by just giving it up.

But lately?  Lately I'm feeling the twitch to write again.  I have new ideas in slightly different genres and I find myself playing around with character and plot in ways that I haven't in years.

So... I'm doing some research on a few topics - New England history and mythology mostly - and we'll see how it all meshes together over the next few months.

Friday, August 17, 2012

Why I don't consider myself an atheist

It just seems like too big a commitment.

And when I say that, I don't mean it in the way that I've heard other wafflers speak of "well, I don't believe in religion, but maybe I believe in God because it would be better to believe than not to, just in case I'm wrong".

I mean it in that I just don't care.

What I believe or don't believe in terms of religion (or my favorite "spirituality") doesn't change a damn thing about the way I move through the world. It just seems a little ridiculous to me to say or think, "I do good in this world because God loves me." Sooooo.... if there were no "God", you would be a raging asshole instead? Awesome.

Recently I saw/shared a meme on facebook that read "Your beliefs don't make you a good person, your behavior does." And the thing is, I think that applies not only to my uber-xtian acquaintances, but also to my hardcore atheist friends. It's as if atheism has become another belief system which they feel the need to promote. And I get that we live in a xtian-dominated nation (GOP propaganda notwithstanding) and the urge to shove non-belief back in the faces of the WWJD crowd may be overwhelming, but dearsweetbabyjesus (ha ha) the smug satisfaction with which many atheists I know brandish their "critical thinking skills" is just about as offensive as the evangelical glow of "I love Jesus".

Blah blah blah.

So, I don't know whether there's a deity out there or not. I don't know whether he/she/it prefers a particular kid of worship or not. It doesn't matter to me. That said, I will not be exposing my daughter to religious hoopla until she's old enough to make reasoned choices. Same as with alcohol and other potentially addictive or damaging behaviors/substances.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Revival - and a slightly new direction

Lately, especially because of the election blah-b'dee-blah, I've been really tempted to write some things on facebook, which is where I spend way too much of my online time. However, I don't really want to alienate the more religious of my friends, and I don't want to get into a debate with the more... Republican... among them either. Life is too damn short. This morning it occurred to me that I had a perfectly neglected blog which could be an outlet for my irritations. And so, I return. Thought for the day: Politics + Religion looks an awful lot like Megalomania + Mental Illness. A politician, like any other public performer, must have a wee bit of ego to want to go through the whole process of standing up in front of a crowd of people and thinking that the crowd will be interested in what they have to say. And that's good - we need people like that. Sadly, certain of those crowds seem to smack of mobs (or even lynch mobs), but that's another thought for another time. And if you look at the big picture of religion - which is pretty much "Don't be an asshole." (see Ten Commandments 4 through 10) - then I don't have a beef there. It's when you look at the specifics of religion that the crazy shines through. And when folks - particularly folks in politics - start leaning on the specifics of their selected religion as an excuse for bad behavior, THEN I have a flare up of my major rage issues. And that's all I have time for today...