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Posts Tagged ‘life’

Winnowing the Wheat from the Chaff

Posted by G.A. Matiasz on November 26, 2017

I’ve written and published two books in twenty-two years. At this rate, I’ll be lucky to complete a third book before I die. In light of that, I’ve gone through several score of potential story ideas at various stages of development–from basic idea to completed rough draft–in my word processing program Scrivener, winnowing wheat from chaff to select out a handful of candidates to work on.

I’ve come up with four possibilities, all science fiction. Two are completed rough drafts of novelettes (7,500-17,499 words) I could try to boost up to novella length (17,500-39,999 words). One is set in a post-apocalyptic far future where the main character, an ex-soldier with various biological military upgrades, meets up with someone who claims to be her brother. The second is a time travel/alternate universe story premised on the early, complete assassination of Lenin in an alternate time line.

I also have two promising ideas for full-length novels (40,000+ words), neither of which are anywhere near completion however. One is set entirely in 1968, the year I got politics, which has the main character traveling around to various iconic/historic events, with a sci-fi twist. The second is near-future science fiction in which neanderthals haven’t gone extinct but live secretly amid regular humans on the verge of self-extinction.

The incomplete novels would take a lot of time to finish, but they have the greatest potential story-wise. The novelettes would require extensive rewrites, but they’re basically done. My plan is to concentrate on these four pieces. Which will be difficult because I always have fiction stories in reserve, like two possible, incomplete sequels to my latest novel. One is set five years after the current book, the other a century later, and both are novelette/novella in length. Also, in addition to the archive of fiction ideas and snippets archived in Scrivener, I’m coming up with new ideas all the time. I’ll continue to write my non-fiction MRR columns, of course, but narrowing my focus in the fiction realm seems best.

I’ve got to draw the line somewhere.

Posted in blog, blogger, blogging, G.A. Matiasz, life, writing | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Blogroll update

Posted by G.A. Matiasz on November 10, 2017

I’ve updated this site’s extended blogroll to delete five non-functioning links. Not bad for ten years of personal blogging. As always, please let me know if you find any other dead links.

Posted in blog, blogger, blogging, life, Personal | Tagged: , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Aroma Tea Shop, San Francisco

Posted by G.A. Matiasz on February 3, 2016

Aroma Tea 6th Ave

I can’t imagine how I missed this place until now.

Aroma Tea Shop inside

Aroma Tea is a quirky—inside and out—tea shop on 6th Avenue in the Inner Richmond. The owners are eccentric yet extremely knowledgeable, traveling often to China to select and buy the teas they sell.

Colorful Teas Multiple Varieties

It’s “all tea all the time” here, with the varieties of tea in wildly packaged tins. The selection is outstanding; black/red, oolong, jasmine, green, white, pu-erh, even herbal. They have daily tea tasting during business hours where you can sample the teas you wish to buy, which also means looking over and smelling the leaves.

Aroma Tea owner

They have two locations:

302 6th Ave @ Clement St.
San Francisco, CA 94118
415.668.3788
Everyday 11am—7pm

845 Washington St.
San Francisco, CA 94108
415.362.6588
Everyday 10:30am—6pm

Tea Tasting

The first time I visited yesterday I purchased 2 ounces of premium white tea. I’ll be back for more.

Posted in Bay Area, life, Paris of the West, San Francisco, San Francisco Bay Area | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

How to live longer

Posted by G.A. Matiasz on February 2, 2016

Appropriated from lollydaskal.com.

Appropriated from lollydaskal.com.


Tom and Ray Magliozzi of Car Talk fame did a bit where they bemoaned having to exercise regularly. If exercising a half hour every day adds up to a year of exercise in your life, one or the other of the Magliozzi brothers quipped, you’ll live just one year extra plus a day before you “buy the farm.”

So what if I said you could live longer with or without exercising more, without actually doing anything different than you’re doing now?

I drank alcohol regularly for 30 odd years prior to stopping completely on January 1, 2010. I wasn’t a fall down drunk, nor did I actually get wasted drunk, but I was a daily maintenance drinker. I drank until I got my buzz on. For that 30 years, when I wasn’t forced to go to work, I woke routinely around 9, 10 in the morning. After I stopped drinking I was depressed for another 9 months and so I continued to rise late in the morning, even though I retired and no longer had to work. That means I was sleeping 9 to 10 hours a night.

When I finally got on top of my depression, I resolved to curtail my sleep to a more normal 7-8 hours a night, meaning that I now wake at 7 or earlier most mornings. That’s 1 to 2 hours extra of wakefulness a day on average, which adds up to 15 to 30 more days of being awake each year.

No one knows the time of one’s death. Waking earlier doesn’t actually extend the date of one’s dying, but it does give one more time to be awake, and hence consciously alive. Plus, I wake up at a calmer, more peaceful time of my day. I feel like a get more done these days as well. That’s something.

Besides, I get to catch a sunrise now and then on my new schedule.

Posted in alcoholism, life | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Gabba Gabba Hey!

Posted by G.A. Matiasz on July 19, 2014

Rest in peace Joey, Dee Dee, Johnny and Tommy.

Though I’m not sure heaven is the right place for the Ramones.
the-ramones

Posted in life, music, punk, punk rock | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Under construction…

Posted by G.A. Matiasz on May 22, 2014

classicscureinternetaddiction
I’m spending way too much time customizing this website. Part of the problem is that this site’s theme, Andreas09, is no longer supported by WordPress, so some of the changes I’ve made can’t be reversed. Such is life! Now, all I need is a humorous cat meme.

UPDATE:
I finally designed a crisp background header for this whole enterprise by lifting one from this website. I’m not exactly sure who to credit as I can’t discern an owner on SmugMug. One of the things I lost in customizing (read: fucking with) the original Andreas09 template was giving hyperlinks either a different color or an underline. Now they’re just bolder. I guess I could buy CSS for a year and do some tweaks, but then again, see the top of this post.

Posted in blog, blogging, cat, life | Tagged: , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Oh No!

Posted by G.A. Matiasz on February 9, 2014

GAM_ponte

For being such a radical commie pinko would-be revolutionist, I really don’t handle change all that well. Case in point: Cafe Ponte is, or was, a neighborhood coffee shop/eatery within walking distance of my home, at 24th and Diamond Streets. I spent many an afternoon comfortably nestled among its worn cafe furnishings and odd artwork with my laptop, availing myself of their free wifi, and happily working on my writing while people watching. I enjoyed their chai lattes, green teas and fruit smoothies, as well as their spinach salads, pastrami sandwiches, and chicken pot pies. They baked their own cookies and pastries, but I deliberately avoided indulging my sweet tooth on these items.

Imagine my consternation when I recently passed by the location and discovered Cafe Ponte’s windows covered with newspaper, with no notice of what might become of one my favorite writing spots. If I’m not mistaken, the owner once owned an Italian deli specializing in hefty sandwiches just a block down on Elizabeth and Diamond that closed some ten or so years ago. And now Cafe Ponte is closing. According to the folks at Pasta Gina next door, the owner sold the cafe to people who plan to reopen as the Diamond Cafe (a name used by a previous incarnation of this location) with a different menu.

True, all things change, although I wish they wouldn’t.

Posted in life, Noe Valley, San Francisco | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »