Monday, January 2, 2012

Belated New Year's Post, Plus Fortune Street

I was going to do a New Year's resolutions post yesterday (my normal Sunday post), but I didn't. Instead I got sucked into a new Wii game--Fortune Street. It is absolutely fabulous, albeit only suited for a narrow range of players. More on that later.

I am going to go ahead an tackle the resolutions (in the form of challenges, natch) first, then do the launch of my newest blog feature--the weekly media breakdown. Which is basically what I've been doing the last few weeks anyway, where I talk about books, movies, and games I've been grooving on lately.

I am a (moderately) Old Person. So yes, I am allowed to use phrases like grooving on. You might also note--pursuant to my quest to chunkify my writing--that I am using em-dashes, parenthesis, italics, quotes, semicolons, and colons liberally. You are my punctuation guinea pigs; I hope to make you squeal. With delight, of course. Literary delight.

Moving on, Here is my 2012 Challenge List--otherwise known as the forties. Which is  a reference to one of my favorite songs, 40oz. to Freedom, by Sublime. And yes, that is the correct spelling. No space between 40 and oz.; no capital o in oz. either. Thank you Internet search engine.

Also, their are lotsa fours and multiples of fours and other math stuff.

1 - Write 400,000 words of new fiction this year. Otherwise known as the "Beat Michael Stackpole's 2011 Wordcount--or BMS2W--Challenge". This breaks down to about 2k a day on weekdays. I hope to write 3 novels as part of that 400k, which will cover about 2.5 k or so. The rest will be short stories/novellas. This challenge is roughly equivalent to doing NaNoWriMo two out of every three months, which is kind of nuts. Wish me luck.

2 - Self-epub 40 titles. I will likely not count five and ten story collections towards this goal, unless time gets tight. :) Roughly equivalent to three titles every four weeks, or four a month with two months off. Again, fairly aggressive. I'm starting to get scared.

3 - Lose 40 lbs. Which, not coincidently, is about how much weight I've gained since turning into an Old Person. Works out to about a pound a week, with the occasional week off. I am easing into a regular jogging/workout schedule, plus cutting back on snacking. In many ways his is the easiest challenge. Excepting that time to work out is difficult to come by for a blazing pen such as myself.

I clearly have no grasp of the insanity I'm signing myself up for.

4 - Of course there's a four! Be 40% nicer to people. This one is a little tough to quantify, and/or judge success; I'll admit that. Roughly, as long as one out of every two times I say something complimentary instead of choking someone out, I win. Important Note--I only choke people out in my imagination.

So there you have it, quite a full plate for Your's Truly this year. I'll be giving regular updates/running totals to keep myself honest and to (hopefully) provide inspiration for those out there that are struggling like myself. Note the lack of any goal related to submissions. I will continue to send some of my stories off to paying markets (magazines, mainly), but my focus is shifting.

Announcer: Aaannnd now...

cue drumroll

Announcer continues: The Weekly... Media... Breakdown... (echo: own... own... own...)

As promised--Fortune Street. This is a Wii game, featuring characters and themed boards from The Mario and Dragon Quest series. Gameplay is like a much deeper version of Monopoly, and is skill-based (while featuring just enough luck to keep things interesting.) If you love statistics/combinatorial type stuff, Mario/Dragon Quest, property buying and trading games, and are a super-nerd (like me), this game is for you.

Each game takes a few hours and there is no twitch-type action. There are a few minigames, but they are entirely luck based, with no real player input. This game is all strategy and horse-trading, folks. There is an easy mode, with reduced complexity, but I haven't bothered with it. The full game is where it's at. I haven't tried playing with other humans; the AI is good enough for me so far. But apparently you can play online, so I might try that out later.

Also, when you finish games you win stamps, which can be spent on outfits for your Mii (avatar.) I know, I know. But it is squee-ishly fun to dress your Mii up in a Santa suit with pink butterfly wings. Seriously, I love this game.

Other stuff - I finished 11/22/63. Writing was great throughout; ending was a bit meh. Worth reading anyway. 'Nuff said. Just watched Contagion; it was decent. Some fun virus stuff that might be useful for SF/Thriller writers. Hangover 2 - fun if you like jokes about sexparts. This series is basically the raunchier version of American Pie, which was the raunchy version of Porky's, and so on.

That about does it for this week. By next time I'll be reading something new; dunno what yet. See you then.

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