Dispatches, thoughts, and miscellanea from writer Jon Konrath

Fifty shades of another stupid list

I’m in one of those phases where I have so much stuff to do and so many different projects, I can’t really sit down to any one of them.  And this blog is one of them, and I always want to update, but have nothing cohesive to say, just a bunch of random stuff, so here’s a list of random stuff.

  1. I am going to New York next week.  Flying there Monday, leaving Wednesday, for work.  It’s been a year and a half since I’ve been there, and I was just looking up something on google maps and almost fell into an inescapable k-hole of looking up every damn house and restaurant I could remember.
  2. Lately, I’ve feared these overly nostalgic episodes, because they always make me want to write a book about some period of my past, which always ends up becoming one of those autobiographical fiction projects, which always stalls out when I think nobody will ever want to read it.  I realized the other day that instead of writing about these periods, I need to write about a character with the same affliction, someone painfully stuck with this need to look at the past, always living with the feeling that there’s a window of time in the past that was ideal in some way.
  3. I just re-read PKD’s The Man in the High Castle for maybe the fourth or fifth time. It’s the first book of his I read, and it’s something I can always go back to and enjoy.  That and the trip to Germany makes me want to re-read Fatherland, but I’ve got too much other reading to get into that.
  4. I’m on a nonfiction run right now, because I’m at that crucial point of editing my own book where I have read it ten too many times and think the whole thing sucks shit.  And when I read any fiction in that state, I immediately get all of these stupid ideas of how to change it, and then hack up the draft in bad ways.  Like I’ll read a Vonnegut book, and then decide I need to rewrite 70% of the book to sound like him or to include drawings of assholes or Kilgore Trout or whatever.  So instead, I read nonfiction, and take a lot of notes for facts and figures I can rip off and turn into plots later.
  5. I made the mistake of hitting OK on an install of Win7SP1 on my work machine about ten minutes before the end of my work day, and a half-hour later, it’s still churning away.
  6. I have been on this kick to do something different monitor-wise, as if having more screen real estate will up my writing efficiency 800%.  I would really like to get one of those giant 30″ Apple displays, but even if I spent a grand on one, I’d also have to buy a new monitor arm and a new KVM switch.  I have heard rumors of this Korean company that makes the Catleap monitor, which is essentially the same panel that’s used in the Cinema display, with 2560×1440 resolution, but is available for around $400.  It’s in an ass-ugly case, only has DVI inputs, Engrish instructions, no support or quality control, and you have to buy one from some shady eBay seller that drop-ships it from Asia.
  7. Instead of this, I bought one of those little 16″ USB monitors, with thoughts of putting it next to or under my existing monitor, and then putting some little windows there, like my email or iTunes or a dictionary or a browser always open to Wikipedia or something.  I got it, and the driver support for OSX was abysmal, and made my machine run like total shit, so I boxed it up and RMIed it.
  8. I decided instead to buy a new monitor arm to raise my current screen a bit more.  Mine sits about 16″ from desktop to center, and it’s a crappy arm with a bit of vibration when I’m typing full speed.  I ordered another arm which will raise it up to about 6″ higher.  When I sit up without slouching and look straight out right now, I look over the top of my monitor, which means I either slouch or continually look down, and both of those are bad.
  9. I still have about 165 Euros left from my trip.  I guess I will change them when I have to go to the airport on Monday.  I don’t know where I can change them in town.  I know the obvious answer is “a bank”, but I don’t have a local bank, and I have a feeling that even if I had a Bank of America account, they would charge me $40 ten times to exchange the money.
  10. This stupid Windows update finally installed.  Actually, I rebooted twice, and then it said it failed, so I started the updater again, and then it came back and said no, it actually worked.

OK, need to go get actual work done.


One response to “Fifty shades of another stupid list”

  1. I can take care of those euros for you. :p Hunh, I never thought of it before, but my monitor is too low too.