Category Archives: announcement

The 400th Straight Day of Consecutive Posts

Mickey has actually done this once before. An entire years’ worth of consecutive days of posting on WordPress, plus 35 more days, now for the second time. A lot of writing. A lot of blathering about this and that. A lot of fishing for ideas… and catching an occasional shark… and an occasional angelfish. And drawing stuff.

What exactly is all this nonsense for?

Well, several important things.

My blog is definitely a place for self-reflection, a space for thinking about who I am, what I am doing, and… most importantly, why. After all, I am now on Medicare, and probably in the last handful of years of my life. I am in poor health. I paid off five years worth of Chapter 13 bankruptcy. It is good to be out of debt. But that is temporary if I accidentally survive a heart attack or stroke.

I have to come to terms with where I am in life. Every new day is precious, a gift I am not taking lightly.

I have a blog also simply for the practice of being a writer and writing every day. You can’t get better at a skill you don’t practice. And as I am now retired from the vocation I was born to do, I don’t use my writing skill to teach children in middle school or high school English classes anymore. I can, however, write stories about all the things children taught me over the years, and end up with some books that will, hopefully, provide future reading teachers something to use in junior high and high school to teach reading skills.

And because I also have an interest in philosophy, I am fully accepting of the idea that life has no meaning unless we give it meaning ourselves. As a Christian Existentialist, I endeavor to create what I believe is the true meaning of my existence. And I am constantly reevaluating that meaning on a daily basis in this blog, and also in my stupid head.

Of course, now that I am retired and no longer risking getting fired for expressing myself online as someone who likes nudity and doesn’t find naked people morally offensive, I can write about being a nudist. Even when I am not joking about believing nudism is a good thing.

And when I am joking, as a writer fond of writing humor, I don’t have to worry about offending anybody or alienating anybody. Countless conservatives, prudes, Trump-lovers, and evil bank executives have already blocked me, unfollowed me, shunned me in public, and sued me into bankruptcy (evil bankers did that last one.) So, I am free to exercise my right of free speech and my offbeat sense of humor. In this blog, I mean. If you do it on street corners, they throw things at you. And bankers might sue you.

And so, I have achieved 400-straight days of posting in this blog. For the second time. And that is a good thing. And if you don’t agree with that statement, feel free to unfollow me, block me, shun me…. but please don’t sue me. And, bankers, I already paid you off. So, don’t do it again.

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Sudden Inspiration

I have been searching for a way to continue my Tuesday novel-writing posts with a novel different from my main work in progress. It sort-of solved the problem with a sudden realization that since fairies bewitched my novel-writing process in the making of The Necromancer’s Apprentice, I might as well pick up a thread from that novel.

PoppenSparkle is the character rescued from the dungeon in the previous book. She had absolutely no chance to shine in that book. Released from captivity by evil fairies, she is the sister of Derfentwinkle, a butterfly child, and gifted with wizard ability.

Every student wizard has to be assigned to a master wizard to learn the truth about magic. And Poppy was assigned to a real sour potato of a master.

It will be a story about a teacher and a student, and how they work out a way to get everything that each one needs from the other. It will give me a chance to do more world-building on the Fairy Kingdom of Tellosia. And more chances to create some teacher-comedy in a setting where I can create a lot of crazy stuff and draw more cartoons.

I may not get started for another couple of weeks yet, but the idea is growing by the hour.

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365

Today’s post marks 365 daily posts in a row, an entire year’s worth of daily posts. I have now achieved this posting streak milestone three times. The other two were both January 1st to December 31st, both intentional achievements. This time came about from the end of last year’s Big Freeze disruption to the present day in February that respresents me getting back to daily blogging a year ago.

This new year of 2022 also marks the publication of my 21st book. I am offering a free copy of the e-book from now until Tuesday, February 22nd on Amazon. It is a fairy tale occurring in a fairy castle disguised as a willow tree. It is the reason I have fairies as the illustrations in this post. The book has an illustration for every chapter.

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The Literate but Illogical Introvert

Yep, I did it again. Novel number 21, the very first paperback produced in the obligatory selfie.

Of course, this one is different than any of the others. This is a fantasy novel where most of the actual characters are three inches tall or shorter. The only normal human character gets shrunk down by magic to visit the fairy world.

Blueberry Bates is the human girl who met and befriended fairies in a previous book Magical Miss Morgan. She’s got the ability to actually see them, and loves to draw colored-pencil pictures of them.

Derfentwinkle is a main character and co-narrator of the story. She is a Sylph with magical ability that has been forced to be the Necromancer’s Apprentice of the title and sent on a suicide mission against the good fairies. She is captured by the good guys and given a chance to make new choices.

Bob is the Sorcerer’s apprentice to the Sorcerer Eli Tragedy (standing behind him in the red coat and hat.) He is the other co-narrator of the story, and he tries hard to help Derfentwinkle change sides. He is quiet and ccmpetent, unlike his fellow apprentice, Mickey the wererat (seen in the background.)

The whole book is set in an imaginary fairy kingdom called Tellosia that I first imagined in the 1980’s.

It all reveals the character of somebody like me who lives most of the important parts of his life entirely in his own stupid head. I have always been a quiet introvert like Bob in this story. Not loud and proud. Just quiet and capable. I am much more comfortable writing my truth in a story like this one rather than being a newsman, celebrity, or actor. Not that I couldn’t have forced myself to succeed in one of those jobs. But the front of the classroom was the closest to center stage I will ever need to be.

I draw pictures and tell stories. That works for the job of public school teacher. In fact, those abilities are useful in putting lessons across to students. But beyond that, I couldn’t go. I am like Bob, not somebody who can force his face in front of others for self-aggrandizement.

So the proof is not in the pudding like the pudding of the old saying that makes no sense to me. (Who ever found a rolled-up scroll with proof of anything on it at the bottom of their bowl of chocolate pudding? Even Jell-o pudding.) The proof is in my book.

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What I Did With My Snow Day

Ice and snow hits the Dallas area once again. About one year from the disastrous deep-freeze of 2021 that helped make Ted “Cancun” Cruz infamous, we are hit with another deep-winter snowstorm. So far, no one in this household has frozen to death, and the electricity has not yet gone out. But it is a snow day. My daughter, the Princess, has no college classes. My wife does not have to teach any masked middle schoolers. The city streets are are icy and hazardous. But I have been busy.

Prior to today, I had already finished the final draft, proofread, and all other preparations for publishing The Necromancer’s Apprentice.

So, even the dog is not getting our and going very far. Only going a couple dozen feet to poo and pee in the snow. And the computer I do most of my writing on gave me death rattles and glitchy delays for doing it, but I did this;

This is only the e-book. The paperback takes longer to be approved.

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Book Number 20

Between the moment of inspiration and the publication of this novella there was only five weeks of time. It is the fastest I have ever completed a writing project for publication. Catch a Falling Star did the same complete process in a mere 36 years. Some things are just quicker than others.

This book, Cissy Moonskipper’s Travels, is a 55-page novella written for teenagers and inspired by the books, Robinson Crusoe by Daniel Defoe and Slake’s Limbo by Felice Holman. It is a survival story about being stranded alone in space with a space ship and resources, but no way to make the space ship go anywhere and a knowledge that there are pirates out there who will looking for her to take her space ship away.

I am quite proud of this project and how it turned out. I invite you to see for yourself..

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I Finished It! #20

Yesterday I finished writing Cissy Moonskipper’s story. It is a 15,000-word novella. It is illustrated. And it will be book #20 written by me. 18 books more than I thought I would ever be able to write and publish.

It is, of course, science fiction. It is set in the 53rd Century AD.

It will be published in e-book and paperback forms very shortly on Amazon.

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Life is Still a Book, an Open Book

This is the updated version of that last post. I have written more books. I have published more books. And I have gotten more people to read and like my work since 2018.

Here is a better idea how things currently stand;

And of course, I left out the book I was using to copy the list from, The Wizard in his Keep.

So, now I stand revealed as the published author, hard-working writer, and total fool that I am.

And here’s a link to the book I forgot. Only a dollar if you’re interested.

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Life is a Book

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Life is a Book

I write chapters in it every day

The themes are more numerous than the stars

And the themes are always… always complex

But I work through them

One word after another

And soon I will close it

And write no more

But it will still be there

My book

novel newz

With the conclusion of Stardusters and Space Lizards, I have now completed a novel nine times.  The seven titles above are the ones I am actually proud of having written.  I am beginning to feel like a novelist.

I should point out that I don’t claim to be a professional novelist.  I have spent a lot more money than I have earned by writing.  But I am not a hobbyist.  After teaching ended as the career that defined my life, writing became my life’s work.  I am trying to become a published novelist.  But “published” is becoming an increasingly complex idea.

Catch a Falling Star is published and available through Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and I-Universe, the actual publisher.  I-Universe is an Indie publisher, but connected to Penguin Books, and so owned by one of the big five.  Aeroquest is published by Publish America, but I could’ve copied from the encyclopedia and they would’ve bound it into a book form.  I am embarrassed to even own up to having written it.  Snow Babies was a contest finalist manuscript and supposed to be published by PDMI Publishing LLC,  but that publisher folded after the editing was done and so it never found its way into print. Magical Miss Morgan is currently with Page Publishing, a vanity press operation that already collected their fees and don’t seem to be publishing my work.  I am looking into the process of suing in case they don’t come through on a process that is already a year overdue.  And I am determined to see the rest of my books in print if that is in any way possible.  Who knows?  Someday somebody may actually read and like my books… by which I mean somebody that I haven’t paid to read it.  The last one I paid to read one wrote the review on somebody else’s book by mistake and then corrected the error by writing a fudged book report on the back cover blurb.  My luck as an author is reminiscent of Vincent Van Gogh’s luck as a painter.

My life is a book.  I am still writing it.  And I will never let go the pen while I still have life enough to hold it in my hands..

 

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Ich Bin Jetzt ein Naturist

The actual card is inside this plastic case. I thought it might be a bad idea to show my membership number and everything.

Yes, my membership card for the AANR arrived in the mail yesterday afternoon. AANR is the American Association for Nude Recreation. My membership is for two years in the South West Region.

But before you immediately unfollow me for my blazing stupidity, let me explain a bit why this nonsense is actually a good thing.

You see, I have had a very long road of avoiding becoming a real nudist. A former girlfriend introduced me to the whole idea of nudism back in the 1980’s. But, I was terrified of being naked in front of other people, mostly because as a victim of a sexual assault as a child, I had traumatic memories about nakedness, but also because my parents and grandparents had taught me to be ashamed of showing off my nakedness to anyone outside the family. And also because I was a middle-school teacher at the time and parents doubt your abilities to keep their children safe if they know you like to prance around outdoors naked.

But I find I have a certain need for nakedness in my life. It is not a sexual thing. Rather it is a sensual thing. And surprisingly, God made us to be chemically dependent on being naked at least for a portion of our lives. Going without sunlight deprives you of enough vitamin D to cause serious depression, self hatred, and even thoughts of self harm. And oxytocin is generated in the pituitary gland in response to being naked among like-minded others. It’s the chemical that makes Scotsmen more fertile than other men if they don’t wear underwear under their kilts. Now, with diabetes, arthritis, and psoriasis plaguing my old flesh, I find that being nude helps immensely. Naked under the sun dries and cools the skin to fight psoriasis plaques, balances my blood sugar quicker, and warms my aching joints.

And I think most people from childhood onwards experience a longing for the innocent freedom of being without the restraints of clothing. I admit to being more than a little obsessed with childish nudity as displayed in many of my artworks. But that does not in itself make me a pervert or a pederast. It is not a sexualized obsession. To be honest, naked children are sexually kinda icky. They don’t engender feelings of arousal, but rather an urge to parentally protect and watch over them, keeping them safe from the demons that ruined my own childhood.

You actually gain confidence and self-control by practicing social nudity with other nudists. This is something I had long suspected was true, but didn’t actually learn until I went for a day to the Bluebonnet Nudist Park North of Dallas.

And it may well be that having the membership card and using that to legitimize the stories I write about nudists and nudism is the only benefit I will get from the membership. I have a desire to go camping in a tent with other nudists, or participate in a nude bike ride in California or New Orleans. But my health keeps me from doing those things totally on my own. And my family members think I am crazy and want nothing to do with going along to help with those plans.

So, I am left being a nudist mostly by myself, and mostly for reasons of writing humorous stories about it.

But now that I finally have an official membership card, I can truthfully say, “I have now lost my long-running battle to not become nudist. Mickey now officially is one. On paper at least.

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Filed under announcement, humor, nudes, Paffooney, strange and wonderful ideas about life