PCGuyIV continues his prompt series with a question about directions.
When it comes to navigation in unfamiliar territory, do you shun technology, relying on traditional maps and written directions, or do you leave the atlas behind letting GPS and Google Maps guide the way?
First, despite being online all the time, I’m generally a luddite and dislike adding new tech into my life. It’s all so complicated and glitchy, imo, and I get more enraged when it fails than I ever did when the normal ways of doing things didn’t work. Back then, I could say, OK, this didn’t work because I skipped a step and next time I’ll know better. But with technology, things simply happen that are out of our control and we can’t fix them. Like Facebook logged everyone off and sold our data to the Klingons. Or my home internet is down because of an outage. Or those effing WP blocks are screwy and ruined my posts…
That said, I totally rely on my GPS now and it’s been literally a lifesaver. I used to copy down directions from Yahoo maps and then end up not concentrating enough on the road because I was trying to read them while driving.
I love Google maps and navigation! I no longer bother printing out directions or scribbling them down. I have a terrible sense of “space” anyway (not merely NSEW) and have to override my impulse to do anything differently from what the nav is telling me. Luckily, I don’t travel obscure roads in the wilderness where GPS can mess up and send you into a pit of quicksand.
But even pre-plague, I didn’t like to go anywhere new, or anywhere period, so there’s that…
Okay, so I followed Jim’s directions and did not start a new post from the main menu (where you are given only one option of starting a new post). I clicked on admin, then posts, then the drop down menu ~ this allowed me to begin a post with the Classic Editor instead of Blockhead. I’m really happy to be writing a post “normally” on my laptop instead of with those insane blocks.
As I’ve said, the one nice feature of blocks is the ability for me to save templates for my regular prompt posts. But it certainly wasn’t worth that tiny convenience yesterday when one of my blocks got messed up, saved itself, and ruined a dozen posts that WP would not let me edit! Remember that a reusable block will update in EVERY POST, not just the current one.
What’s funny is that posting from my app gives me no problems whatsoever (except that for my longer rants and such, it’s nice to have the real keyboard on my laptop), but on the browser, they want you to mindlessly default to blocks. Why? I don’t know! Blockhead posts couldn’t be seen properly in the app anyway, nor could blocks be edited there once scheduled. I had to preview my blog in a browser window if I wanted to check my post.
I have time today to inflict more posts upon you. First up is Dr. Tanya and her blogging about bloggers’ blogs series. Last week she asked…
Do you like reading posts written for prompts? If so, what kind?
I like reading fiction and poetry best. I also enjoy humorous slices of life. Most of all, it’s fun to read posts where the writer combines several prompts. 🤩
When you publish a piece in answer to a prompt, do you read entries by other bloggers? If so, do you read them before or after you have written your own?
I read posts as they appear in my feed, whether responses to prompts or otherwise, and I don’t deliberately read other responses before starting my own, but often it happens because I don’t have time to write a new post early in the morning. I try to avoid duplicating someone else’s idea, though if the prompt is a question, then it’s fine to give a similar answer. I’ve been trying to choose obscure songs for Jim’s SLS, both to avoid duplication and also in hopes people might enjoy a new tune.
Before you have written a prompt post, if you read someone else’s response that has the same idea as yours, do you abandon the project, modify it, or continue as before?
I would abandon or modify it (re fiction or poetry). One of the things I dislike most about social media is the constant repetition of stuff. 😡
We are all fans of Q&A prompts. How do they spark creativity in you?
They mostly don’t spark anything except the occasional attempt to be funny. I avoid the ones that I feel add nothing interesting to the general conversation, but if they are about the writing process, I may drone on and on.
Okay, now onto PCGuyIV and this week’s Truthful Tuesday, which relates to the above questions by Dr. Tanya…
When you come across dead links, either in your existing posts or in comments on your blog, do you try to fix or delete them, or do you just let them be, and why?
First, I rarely pay any attention to links in comments. I don’t want to be directed to reading material, nor am I usually in the mood to listen to a song someone plops into the box. So, the links all could be dead as far as I know. I don’t care. 😛
However! I have a whole different attitude toward my own posts. If I see an error, I will fix it, even if the post is 10 years old. I have done this, in fact. Last year I checked EVERY link here and deleted dead ones (also fixing any typos or spacing glitches I found). Of course, there may be new dead links now, especially on videos. Lately, I’ve tried to use more of the official vids to avoid this issue. I wish I could correct typos in all my own comments everywhere…
Melanie starts our week off right with a new set of Q’s…
1. Why do we dream?
I consider it a data dump… to get rid of all the bits and pieces of broken code that float around our minds.
2. Do you think a person’s name influences the person they become?
3. Does hardship make a person stronger? (example: What doesn’t kill you, makes you stronger)
Sometimes. Being a lonely child forced me to find ways to enjoy things by myself, which turns out to be a strength. I’m glad I’m not needy for companionship. But hardship can also make you more fragile, like if you were deprived of proper nutrition or medical care…
3. Why do we judge ourselves by our intentions, but judge others by their actions?
Because we are all hypocrites! But seriously it makes survival sense to favor oneself and one’s family over others. I don’t actually see a problem with this most of the time, at least in public. Engage in berating yourself or your spouse in the privacy of your home…
4. GRATITUDE SECTION(Always Optional) Feel free to share some gratitude in the form of images, photos or writing. Thanks!
I’m super bummed out again. I don’t know why I thought Medium would be a good place for my writing ~ not only am I never going to make money there (beyond pocket change), but there’s almost no camaraderie. There can’t be when you need to read as much as possible, react briefly, and move on… hoping others see you and add you to their following list. I’ll never get as many hits as a tech writer or someone who goes on (and on) about politics or making money or whatever the hell people can’t resist clicking. Barely anyone cares about poetry or fiction or personal essays. It makes me so annoyed I refuse to click on the “trending” articles ~ why is the Medium algorithm helping the popular writers, those who jabber on about tech and money, instead of assisting others in becoming visible? Welp, I’m thinking of canceling my membership ~ why should my $5/month help support someone writing about writing for money instead of engaging in ACTUAL WRITING? Eff that!
And it’s not just me. I see great writing there, really excellent poetry, funny rants, solid flash stories… all with minimal recognition from other readers because the site pushes articles about bitcoin, Trump, or having a colonoscopy (the first three trending stories in my feed today). It’s super discouraging. 😢
I know we’ve talked a lot about the “hit & run” in Blogland, but the difference is that here I feel like I “know” some people and have valuable interactions with them… Sadje, Fandango, Angie, Melanie, Rory, Di, Barbara, Jim, Ashley, et al, plus the people I knew already from other venues, such as Keera, Roy, and AD. There are more in both groups, so please don’t be upset if I didn’t mention you ~ those are some of the people I saw in my latest notifs. Point is, interacting with these folks makes the “hit & run” bloggers tolerable. I understand that the majority of likes here are from bloggers who don’t know me, won’t ever care about my writing or buy one of my books, and only pay attention to me (for the nanosecond they do) in hopes I’ll follow them down a link-strewn path to some garbage video where I’ll be assaulted with ads. However! The small community of kind and fun folks who continually interact make WP a happy place to hang out.
I have spent so much time writing online for the past 20+ years. Usenet, blogs, Facebook, Twitter, yada, and now Medium. Not to mention that I’ve written actual books! And… nothing. Minimal book sales. Scant interaction on the other sites. Why do I keep wasting my time? I just don’t even know. I really don’t. Maybe I’m just not good enough or funny enough or poetic enough. I AM NOT FISHING FOR COMPLIMENTS. Please don’t. It’s actually worse for people to keep saying they like my writing (I know you mean well, so thank you) when the evidence is in that I can’t make it as a fiction or poetry writer, not even as a small side hustle. I do earn money via business writing, but I’m not talking about that now. I’m talking about the writing I love to do. Fiction and poetry. 💖
If I’m only writing for the love of writing, then I’ll do it here on my blog exclusively where I’ve enjoyed writing and interacting all along and where there’s no money to be made in the first place, so I don’t have to obsess over the lack of it flowing my way. It’s not like I’ve neglected my blog or anything, but I’ve spent almost all my other free time the last couple months on Medium, and it’s just depressing to me now. I can’t help but see the parallels to dating. It took me many years to acknowledge that I hate dating sites, dislike meeting new men who are going to judge me as a romantic prospect, and don’t even want a relationship at all under these crummy conditions. Since I’ve quit trying, that area of my life is calm and peaceful because I’ve filled it with more family time, friends, reading, movies, and painting. Why shouldn’t I do the same with the writing venues that are causing me distress? (I’m not dumping Twitter because it’s a good source for info, but I haven’t written poetry there lately.) That includes putting out more books for Amazon Kindle, where they’ll just sit on a virtual shelf growing mold like old banana bread no one wants.
First thing, we come up with a cute name like beach-kitty or butterfly-candy. Nope, taken. Okay, how about miz_write? Clever, isn’t it? But no, they suggest miz_write473 or miz_write_taco or miz_write_aardvark. Wow, are there really 472 miz_writes? I try miz_wryte1 and they accept that. Now, to choose a photo and a font and a format and a tagline. I go with a library motif but soon decide it’s too boring. Then I do cupcakes, but they look childish. Besides, my main “thing” is not baking. Wouldn’t want to mislead anyone. Okay, sunsets obviously! I do my theme in sunset with complementary colors. OMG SO PRETTY! I’m very happy with this whole dealio even if it did take me three years to decide on everything. But wait! Now all my friends have moved to another site. Fine, I’ll go there too.
Rory has a new set of Friday Four questions for us…
1. Do you ever simply stop and wonder ‘Where has time gone to?’ or is it something that never bothers you?
I definitely think about this and it bothers me frequently. I’m sad I haven’t been a big writing success and probably won’t be. I feel bad I failed at romantic relationships. I wish I’d spent more time with my mom; I wish I had more time now with my daughters and grandchildren. The next 20 years will pass in a flash, assuming I even get 20 more…
2. If you had a warning label, what would yours read?
“May spontaneously combust.”
3. What fact amazes you every time you think of it?
That anything exists.
4. What kind of activities do you enjoy doing and what would you never do?
I like boring old lady activities: reading, writing, gentle walking, playing with cats and grandchildren, baking, painting, going to museums and libraries, drinking tea…
Things I would never do include all sports (playing or watching), exotic travel, fishing, hunting, camping, long hikes, and anything dangerous or adrenaline-rushy.