Friday, December 28, 2007

The Hammered Strike and Writing Reflections

Yes, it's a given that you all missed me once more, but as little as I tend to write in here (And I attempt to compensate for that by making it worth reading, obviously. Even if that more often than not amounts to rambling until you want to pop in the mouth.), I felt it better to take a little time off for the holidays. (It's not exactly as though I'm employed anyway, but the holiday season can be a rather busy, stressful time, as we all know.) I contemplated writing something for Xmas, but opted to pass. It was a full moon around then, and the best I could come up with was some directionless shtick about a Santa Claus werewolf. I opted to spare you, figuring you'd all probably had more than enough of that kind of crap after the Frosty story.

At any rate, that's it for the holiday season stupidity for '07! Stay tuned in '08 for even more tumor-inducingly stupid garbage! With a laugh or two thrown in now and then for good measure. I can't have you sobering on me now, can I? Hopefully, I'll be a little more consistent in writing in this thing next year. Ideally, I'd like to write two entries a week, but so far, that obviously hasn't worked out so well. Some days, I'm inspired. Some days, not so much. Inspiration is fleeting. As is motivation. These are both things I wish I could simply snap my fingers and create out of thin air. But tragically, I am but a mortal human fool. And kind of absorbed in Super Mario Galaxy right now. Not that I've let video games kill my imagination or anything.

Er, anyway, without further ado, I'd just like to say I hope you humans out there didn't have too bullet riddled an Xmas. Or any other holiday you might celebrate, whether Festivus, Crimbo, Hanukkah, Ramadan, or Kwanzaa.

Onward to the meat of the entry! (Which is more like a side blurb compared to how much empty rambling this entry's already bogged down with. You'd think I'd be better at trimming the fat, so to speak, but then, I'm a novelist. Trimming the fat's what editors are for. Something'd probably seem wrong if I suddenly turned into one of those blog-people sticking with bite-sized paragraph entries. This thing? It's more like eating a stack of pancakes. You'll want to take a nap afterwards, maybe hook yourself up to a heart monitor.)

The Writers Guild strike has yet to end. The writers are heading on into their third month with no end in sight. All they're asking for is the royalties they deserve and have all along been thus denied. One by one, strike supporters have been forced back onto the air. Ellen Degeneres never stopped doing her show during the strike and took much flack from the guild for it. Carson Daly was the first late night talk show host to return to the air in early December, and he too has seen a backlash for resuming the show. On as of January 2nd, Jay Leno and Conan O'Brien will be returning to their respective late night talk shows as well, under pressure from NBC. Both Conan and Leno are continuing to pay their writing staff out of their own pockets as the strike continues, however. And just now, it was announced that Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert will be returning to their respective Daily Show and Colbert Report in January. Stewart and Colbert were, like Conan and Leno, both strong supporters of the writers. Both of their shows - like Conan and Leno - will be returning without writers, and thusly rely largely on improv comedy from the respective hosts, leaning more heavily on the interviews. Being a longtime fan of both shows, I'm certain that they'll be able to make the shows entertaining, given their tremendous talents, but without the writers, a major part of what makes the shows what they are will still be gone. No matter how you look at this, that's troubling.

The strike rages on with no end in sight and little in the way of negotiations. The networks have taken hits from the strike already as is - no, shitty reality TV is not a good replacement for the shows people want to see - but still refuse to budge. The writers are hellbent on getting what is rightfully theirs. The networks are similarly hellbent on seeing to it that they don't get it. Hosts are being forced to return to their shows, rather than sticking entirely by their writers, lest they find themselves without a job. Even Fox is continuing to produce and air new episodes of Family Guy into '08 without creator Seth MacFarlane's consent or support, in an effort to undermine the writers. Right now, the writers are losing. Corporate greed is winning. And once again, we're seeing the whole damn critically-important union system being undermined once again. An ongoing and disturbing trend we've been seeing in recent years, one the conservatives've been pretty happy about. After all, a system under which workers can organize by vocation and strike when they're mistreated is apparently entirely unamerican. You should kowtow to the corporations and be glad they ever gave you a job! This is the America we live in today. It's an unnerving time. All we can do is continue to support the strike and unions in general, as major corporations try to disassemble all that they can, and as many retail chains now to, ban unionization amongst their employees. In a conservative dominated America, we're watching the progress clock turn further backwards. While they insist that the liberals have all the power, and that those of us on the left - y'know, with a real social conscience - are destroying everything. The truth is, we're all being strangled by a corporate chokehold. And those hands? They are not left-leaning. I'm still trying to figure out where this world is that the conservative pundits always rail on where the left has meaningful political voice and power.

Aren't you glad this one's over? Now you can look forward to my next entry. I'm going to try to get something written on New Year's Eve. No idea if it'll be something stupid and pointless or actually worth reading yet, but only time will tell. I'd like to end 2007 on a good note. It didn't end up being quite as big as I'd hoped - in terms of finishing Project 27 Days and making real progress in finding publishing, anyway. But I've got hundreds of pages written. It's the longest, most important and meaningful project I've undertaken, and I will finish it and get it published next year if it kills me. Getting this blog started and even the tiniest bit of recognition on the internets is certainly a start.

I'd like to end this entry, at least, in taking a moment to thank all of you who've bothered paying attention to this thing at all. Whether you comment or simply lurk, whether you're a first time visitor who may never show their face here again after hoping to find a more exciting blog or a regular, as few of you as there are, from what I've seen of my traffic reports, thanks for giving this little chunk of internet data and these musings of a hopeless fool and aspiring artist of words a look. I appreciate genuinely your allowing me to steal even a moment of your time, and hope you'll continue to come, read, and comment in the coming year. Maybe even give my novel a look when it hits shelves. It's better than anything I've written here, I can promise you that. Here's to hoping I can figure out some more ways of getting this thing out there and draw even more peoples' interest in the coming year, and that I might stand the tiniest chance of breaking into even the periphery of the mainstream of the literary and blogging worlds once I'm published. Everybody needs to read about evil self-aware snowman zeppelin rampages, after all, am I right?

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