The Blog Journey

There are only so many hours in a day. Like most people, I am busy. To develop a blog will require a long-term time commitment. This project will be in addition to my other long-term projects. A synopsis will assist in determining the role this blog will be performing. Firstly, it is a place for me to post my writing. At some point in building the blog I will have to get readers. Quality always sells quicker for a higher price. (No I am not charging anything). Quality a must. Regular posting. Posting is written about at every writers site. This is an important one. It has to be on topic. A topic is a must and I don’t have one yet. What is the goal? Work out a schedule.

Firstly posting: I am a writer. I can’t hide all my writing in some lost draft file that will never see the light of day. Those who are called to write should do just that. Writing can be looked at in a number of contexts but the end result should be that it is available to those who want to read. To publish at my blog is to put the writing there for any who might be interested in that writing. Editors and publishers for example. I will still send them hard copies but maybe at 3 am my website will compel them to give me an advance on my work, my art.

Inspiring Readers: Yikes! To set a system to gather email addresses. If somebody signs up here, I know they are already visiting. It is easier to preach to the converted. It is wonderful to be able to write. It is just as wonderful to have people read what I write. It would be to my advantage to have a high viewership. Good work should be compensated. Even better would be to take the knowledge and develop an asset that produces passive income. Guess who has to come up with the seed money? You got it! The website has to pay for it. There are blogs that continue to yield an income even after the creator has exited. They become salable assets.

This should not be third on the list but it is good we are here now. Quality is an absolute. I say these things primarily for myself. I am glad that others value what I say. As the site develops the quality will rise in accordance with experience. I am reminded of Jordan B. Peterson and his writing for 3 hours a day, everyday for fifteen years. That is a lot! He describes that he re-wrote most sentences at least fifty times. That is a lot of attention. His genre is probably slightly different from whatever genre I am going to commit to. Most of my writing here has been at stream of consciousness level or just above. I appreciate the consistency.

Regular Posting: This is one of those secrets of blogging success that cost nothing but gives and gives and keeps giving. There are people who will show up everyday because they are interested in seeing what you wrote. They are interested in what you say. What a compliment of the highest order. The other secret to blogging everyday is that we get better. Regular posting also offers up to thirty thousand words a month, or more, to extract stories from.

The schedule becomes apparent with daily writing. I need to perform the entire daily schedule for at least a month to experience the real results. So far this term I have only confirmed Latin 2. I may only take that one course and spend the rest of the time taking on the projects I already have on the drawing board. Work on an outline of my writing job by day, week , month and longer. I need to call upon my incredible work ethic. I had forgotten all about that gift. Remember how hard you worked at the jobs you had.

For now my one of my main themes will be writing. Another will be to become a scholar. Third, but again very important, will be to do the amount of reading I need to do on the subjects I have chosen to write about. Reading as research is especially crucial to good writing. It is a process of following the example of someone who already possesses good writing habits that I can emulate.

My mentor, tutor, life coach who I will call Jane is well. Jane suggested to me that I do exactly what I am doing now. Without her suggesting it I don’t know if I would’ve done it. Her sone is in Cape Town, South Africa right now. He travels the world with a few of his friends. He is an Ontario Scholar. He plans never to attend university. His goal is to travel. A lot! I agree with him. He leaves Canada for a good part of the year. Then he returns and works at a restaurant and also plays well-paid gigs with his band. Then it’s off for another winter of exploration. Those guys make everybody jealous.

The Dream Machine continues. The dream machine is the list of projects for the next few weeks/months. For now the writing career has been given a big boost. I will give it a lot of attention and care. I am confident that I could have an income of some sort by the end of the year. Learn it. Get writing to pay for itself and then some. The money can pay for me to publish my stuff, my art. I would like to earn income form my writing to validate my “right to write”. What would I do with the money once the basics were paid for? Travel Canada. Find interesting stories to write about. It would be good to be able to have good writing trips or workshops to attend. To be able to fly somewhere for a few weeks, rent a car when needed and write. I hope I like researching my stories to write. I get to be a detective, a sleuth.

Another day, another bunch of words!

Where Do I Begin

Note: In this post suicide, family violence and dysfunction are discussed. If you are in crisis get to an Emergency Department right away.

That is a good question. I am a writer for a number of years and of a number of sorts. To write is to be a writer. Being a writer does not depend on anybody else’s approval. I love that about writing. I thought writing would be a good place for me to hide. But writing doesn’t hide you. It exposes you. It exposes you in that at some point in your writing, you come to know yourself.

In less then eight months I will have my sixty-fifth birthday. So I am sixty-four. I am retired after a twenty-five year stint working for a Class 1 railway. I enjoyed running engines and trains.

I am a quiet person and getting quieter. I think listening is a good talent to have. I am single. For me being single is a bit of a double-edged sword because I like women. Most of my life I was involved in serious relationships with a woman. I miss all of them. Every single one of them. But I am invested in this new life design which is sixteen months old and still in progress. Writing has become number one in my life, along with study. The two are tied closely together.

My adult children live Ontario. They are 34 & 31. They are the best!

I have always been an adventurer of sorts. That should qualify as a pre-requisite for writing and studying, I hope.

But seriously, it is a good life. I also had to move to Montréal to execute the plans. Sweet Montréal. That amazing European city in the heart of Canada.

I did a lot of things. I am not wealthy, although I probably should have been. I have spent fifteen years in recovery for addictions. One day at a time. Not today, thank you. I can do this. Right now, this is the best I have ever been in my life.

I have been retired for four years and ten days. Life’s challenges gave me the gift of resilience.

I find the discipline required for writing and studying a character trait that needs constant practice. Constant means “everyday”.

Briefly, without shame or blame; there were a number of serious character flaws developed in the family of origin that have been remedied since 2003.

I have given or do give generously to worthwhile causes. I am a good person.

I am grateful that I am able to work from home.

That’s the good stuff. Here is the other side, this inconvenient truth. Both of my parents were cruel, child abusers. There were four children. None of the siblings are in contact. It has been that way for decades. None of the children committed suicide. Gratefully, I am a failed suicide; thoughts of suicide were a constant companion for a number of decades.

Family dysfunction is not conducive to teaching and learning about relationship structure and dynamics. The principle that applies here is trust. Negative trust issues are difficult to remedy even in adulthood. It takes time and consistent personal re-enforcement. It also requires a faith of sorts. It can be a negative loop; people with trust issues usually have a difficult time with faith. The enemy of faith is fear.

But at least all four children survived. No-one got murdered or committed suicide. As a child I believed that in all likelihood I would be murdered by my parents. All four of us had children. Those children are all doing well. The only person connected to me that doesn’t do well is my mother. She is still the vengeful, angry, narcissistic, self-entitled train wreck she has always been. It’s all about choices. I can only change myself. I tried for about fifty years to change my mother but it never happened. Choices.

Mother is now eighty-five. A recent widow. She is going blind. I don’t know if any of her few friends are still living or not. I like to think that it is never too late to change but eighty-five maybe pushing it a little. Besides if my mother hasn’t had a burning desire to heal or improve herself by now, it probably won’t happen. Change requires major effort; honesty, kindness, faith, etc. Mother is more inclined to proudly brag about her awful temper.

Mother never did depend on herself. She gauged herself by the man in her life. That was who validated her as a person. Needy? Yes. Desperate? Absolutely! Her concern has always been “things”, usually her man’s things. I will stop talking about her here because it becomes a useless criticism session. And she doesn’t abuse me anymore. I will never have to see her or listen to her again. I’m off the hook. And I am out of the will. Not to complain but the will is where her lack of recovery or change is most obvious. Her youngest son will receive 10% and my children will split the remaining 90%. I will be blunt; it is all blood money to me. However, she has four children, etc. Altogether there are fifteen kids, grandkids and one great-grandchild. This would have been an excellent time to see some honour in her, or from her. I knew that, because it was her, it would be difficult.

My son is very good to her. I do admire him for that because he was ignored by her when she had been quite capable of having a relationship with both my kids. We were all in the same city. My son will not be available to her forever. He is seriously considering a move to another city. Part of the issue is that my mother’s family live into their later nineties and their early one hundreds. My mother could end up blind with no-one because of the way she chose to treat people.

There is no victor. This hurts but it is par for the course. She always leaves a trail of pain.

How did those two jerks end up with a nice guy like me for a son? Lol!

The journey continues; learning to write; writing to learn.

Watch Out For The Politics

For perspective, I live in Montréal, Québec, Canada. I moved here over a year ago. After living here for a year I became a resident of Québec. What does that mean? Noticeably my taxes went up by $1645.00 a year. It is paid once a month. It is deducted from my monthly pension. This place has a lot to offer me. Living in downtown Montréal may not be everybody’s idea of peaceful living. After over sixteen months of living here, I remain! If anything I have buried my Québec roots deeper.

Politics in Canada is usually quite entertaining. It doesn’t have the drama and players that the American version has, but it attracts attention.

Pot is now legal in Canada. When the federal government legalized it last summer, the legal age was established at 18 years of age across Canada. In most provinces the age is 19. the same age as consumption of alcohol and cigarettes. In Alberta the age for all the good stuff is still 18. That’s what Québec’s age requirement was up until yesterday. Yesterday in Québec the age was raised to 21. The provincial party in power right now is the CAQ. They raised the age from 18 to 21 yesterday to make the point that pot is not safe for still developing brains of young people. So now I am speculating that these people will buy from the “dark side” once again, because they have no choice. They have been legislated out of a system that was put in place for safety and to deprive criminals of drug trade profits. The drinking age is still 18 here even though in most provinces it is 19.

With regards to pot the Québec government has done some things right. I like that retail pot is the domain of the provincial government. I say that in a place where there are liberal wine and beer purchase laws. Here, liquor is sold in provincial liquor stores. Canada is already an inconsistent patchwork of laws when it comes to cigarettes and booze. It looks like the confusion will continue.

This was a knee-jerk reaction that never got the time for thought that should have occurred. I realize that “populist” political parties seem to be in vogue right now. Quite often the leaders of these type of parties claim that their majority at the ballot box gives them the right to legislate as they see fit. This Québec government is only too quick to use the “notwithstanding clause” of the Canadian Constitution to avoid discussion or to rush legislation through.

This type of governance, however popular with the majority as the government claims, is fraught with potholes.

My concept is that democracy was not intended for the protection of the majority; it was intended for the protection of the minority from the majority. Foisting democracy upon us on the basis of who has the most similar opinions is poor governance.

This is the same group of people who quickly used the “notwithstanding clause” to legislate against the wearing of religious items in public service jobs. Justifying legislation on bogus “polls” is foolhardy at best. A majority does not imply or suggest correct behaviour. The rushed, subverted legislation of the CAQ serves to make a reversal of the law more arduous and expensive.

That’s enough about who can legally smoke pot in Québec.

More notes on life. I went east way east to Rue Langelier; to the Wal-Mart there. I like going to that area because I used to go there when I lived at métro station Frontenac. Another strong draw for me is that most of the people in this area speak French only. It is good practice for me. Well, … it is practice for me! It was a good decision to go early. On the way out little traffic, no delays. On the way back in, a little more congestion and a line was developing in the left turn onto Papineau to go to the South Shore. None of that nonsense for me. And I was back by 1100 am. I bought a basic kettle and a pot for $37.00 for both items. No more boiling water in the frying pan. And now I have a real pot to boil things in. I had wanted to buy these items for many months now. I am happy. I especially will enjoy more tea. Having one pot adds a lot of flexibility to cooking. I could have mashed potatoes!

It did stop snowing yesterday afternoon. For the last few hours the snow had been very light. I still had to clean the car off this morning. It is mild again and the snow has stopped. The signs are up to move cars off the streets they will start clearing first. Du Parc is always done a couple of days before our street. Our street is only three blocks long.

Looking back on these past few days I am grateful for the holidays. I enjoyed my time no matter what I did. I did have fish and chips one evening after walking up to Mont-Royal. At Restaurant Fameux. It was good fish.

As my schedule dictates I have been writing. Today will be my fifth day in a row writing at least 2,000 words per day. There is plenty of room for improvement because I write a good volume every day. I will be able to build stories on that volume. It is almost 61,000 words /month. I am busy. That is not an excuse to weasel out of the 2,000 per day. No matter what that word count must be met. This is not playtime. This is writing. This is everything. There is plenty to do. It is becoming a busy job. That is what I want. To get really good at school and my writing career. At this early stage of my schedule it is extremely important that I hit that 60,833 word per month quota. The doing is proof that it can be done. Writing is starting to feel normal, usual. And that is the point.