Saturday, November 15, 2014
Have you thought, every so often, about writing a book?
The idea of writing a book floats in the air like a magic carpet. Golly, just about everyone I know has thought, at one time or another, I ought to write a book.
Aside from a huge desire to visit the kingdom of fame, before you write your book, you need to figure out what you want to write about.
Is it something important you want to SAY to the world? Or a life story, an amazing adventure -- a love story, passion, addiction, compulsion -- whatever -- grab a pencil and paper and scrawl some words that remind you of various possibilities.
Hey, this could take weeks! You could use the fortuity of having read this blog, and make the list today.
After you eeny-meeny-mini-moe for awhile, pick an idea, and write the first sentence of your book. Just do it. Don't fuss over the first sentence, write it and keep writing for ten minutes.
You're on the magic carpet. It's scary, the world is rushing by above you and below you, and you could lose your balance, but it's the beginning of a marvelous ride.
Don't re-read what you wrote just now. Don't try to share it with a loved one.
I am strongly -- loudly -- advising you, do not get involved with who'll read it or whom you'll read it to, or things like punctuation, spelling, or getting it published. Just keep going at whatever pace fits in with your life.
Selling it -- the 10, 50, or 1000 pages, or whatever you have created, is opening a whole new can of peas. Trying to get your book published can smother you -- divert you from working on the next page, and the next page of your book.
Wait till you're nearing the end of your story. It's a feeling like you're out of gas, sort of sleepy, not excited, aware of books, books, books languishing on shelves, titles in ads, authors talking about books on TV -- that is the time to Google, and investigate "Help You Get Published" links, that will tell you, step by step, what you have to do to get people to read what you wrote.
Realty: It took me about two years for me to get the manuscripts for my six books into an ebook format and get them published. I spent $5000 on formatting, and creating a website). Right now, after two years online, I have earned about $300. (You can format and make a website yourself; I could afford to buy help -- my successful actor-husband supports me in a style to which I am happily accustomed.)
This is how I feel sometimes as I read about other authors and their best-seller books, as I am trying to sell mine.
Even do, it's a uniquely fabulous adventure! I'm proud of me! I'm delighted I did it!
Just get on the carpet, get going, do it.
Wednesday, November 12, 2014
Have you ever ridden in a driverless car? The idea has always seemed unreal, but today, the passengers in that car could be me and my husband.
Some partly "quasi" driverless "autonomous" cars date back to the 1920s and the 1930s. At the 1939 World's Fair, a street intersection in the City of the Future had autonomous cars. Since the 80's, significant advances have been made in technology and autonomous vehicles are being developed by Mercedes-Benz, General Motors, Nissan, Toyota, Audi, Volvo, as well as in Germany, Switzerland, and Google's project farm, in Frisco.
Google's Self-Driving Car project created the robotic vehicle "Stanley," winning a $2 million prize from the U. S. Department of Defense. Meanwhile, Nevada, Florida, and California have passed laws permitting the operation of autonomous cars.
Currently, Google is working on a Toyota Prius that will have neither steering wheel nor pedals -- just $150,000 in equipment including a $70,000 radar system, with a range finder that enables the vehicle to generate 3D maps that can be combined with other high-resolution maps of the world, and produce data that allow it to drive itself (or utilize computation from remote computer farms in the area.)
The Google test group is composed of ten cars, (six Toyota Prius, one Audi, and three Lexus' -- each car operates with a Google engineer in the passenger seat. They are being tested on San Francisco's steep hairpin turns, city traffic, on the Golden Gate Bridge, and around Lake Tahoe. The cars drive at the speed limit stored on its maps; they maintain their distance from other vehicles using sensors; the group has done over 700,000 accident-free miles. Though Google says it has no immediate plans to manufacture cars, it plans to develop a business which would market the system and the data behind it to automobile manufacturers.
"No immediate plans"-- hah -- that means it's going to happen very soon.
I think I'd be nervous, traveling in a car without a driver, but this video tells me it's going to be fun, safer than driving, and very convenient.
Sunday, November 9, 2014
John answers gracefully, describing wife Emily Frankel's talents--dancing, cooking, writing, handling various business things skillfully and efficiently.
Em launches in to a paean of praise for John Cullum as a THERE person--some one who's always able to concentrate on an issue, with physical and mental energy, no matter if it's fixing, painting, oiling, plumbing, or auditioning for the next job.
Yes, Emily really likes what John likes about her, but he loves what she likes about him.