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I’m trying not to put up puff posts for every bit of publicity that the BRatGGC* gets, but I can’t resist two items.

The first is through the kindness of John Scalzi, the noted science fiction author, who runs “Big Idea” pieces for authors with new books. Most of those are, unsurprisingly, science fiction or fantasy, but Mr. Scalzi was kind enough to include the Boxer book today. He is a mensch, and you should buy his books.

The second is from the Wall Street Journal, which ran a review of the book last week. I liked the review, and as long as I sort of squint my way past the opinion page of the WSJ, I like it as well.

*Boy, that’s a bad acronym. Any better suggestions?

Over the past month, I’ve been finishing — as in, putting the final, no really, the final! — touches on my book. It’s been a huge pain because of the narrative structure I’ve adopted this go round. Lots of flashbacks means lots of moving parts. Change one thing, you have to change many things. Very annoying.

Anyway, because of my present circumstances (to recap: annoyed), I’ve been paying more attention even than usual to storytelling and editing. Which prompts two observations: first, J.K. Rowling should have edited her books. If another one of her characters “pants”, I’m going to assume Hermione or Gilderoy is trapped in a low-budget pr0n film (ick). And second, the opening twenty or so minutes of the Star Trek reboot is a model of narrative economy. Like the much-praised, and deservedly so, montage in Up (No, I’m not crying. But hang on a sec, okay? I have something caught in my eye.), the scenes, starting from when the lights go down until Kirk and crew begin their adventures on the Enterprise, are incredibly taut. The number of characters and story lines introduced (though they couldn’t wedge Scotty in until later) is admirable. I haven’t done that well with my book, I’m afraid. But then again, my budget was smaller than J.J. Abrams’s.

The latest round of Ron Paul excitement reminds me of this blog’s long and rich relationship with the mad doctor. Herewith a holiday selection of oldies.

Enjoy.

Aaron Rodgers of the Green Bay Packers majored in history (with, apparently, a 3.60 GPA) and thus was able to answer a Civil War question effectively (starting at 54 seconds in):

We like Aaron Rodgers.

(h/t to Of Battlefields and Bibliophiles)

I.

Make a joke about Nietzsche and the eternal recurrence.  Problem: surely it’s been done before.

II.

Make list of possible farewell sayings.  “Better to burn out than it is to rust.” “So long, and thanks for all the fish.”  “Here’s looking at you, kid.”   “It’s been emotional.” “Thumpity thump thump look at Frosty go.” Problem: there’s too many.

III.

Have another cup of coffee.

IV.

Play around with formal ends of letters like in days of yore.  “Remember, gentleman, as you hit refresh, that I am pleased to remain, Yours, &c.”  Problem: would have to compose the rest of the letter, too.

V.

Go on mad hunt for fugitive Christmas cookies.

VI.

Search wildly for an appropriate poem to parody.  Candidates: Hyperion, A Funeral Elegy, the Aeneid, the Odyssey.  Problem: pretentious, also “blogga feminaeque cano.”

VII.

Plainly:  I’d rather take a break before it becomes a chore or I start posting pictures of cats.  Thanks for reading; see you around some time maybe.

On he flared….

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