Hello, and welcome to my little corner of quirkiness. The purpose of this blog is to make it easier to connect with my readers. It's really that simple. The name of the blog, "Quirky Dreams," is relevant only in that my dreams are often quirky, unusual ones, and they are also where I get many of my writing ideas from. I dream in full-length, color, high-def story lines, and if they are remembered, I write them down. Parts or all of these dreams may enter a story. A story might be based around a single dream or an idea from a dream. Regardless of which it is, this is my writing blog, so kick back in your chair, bed, recliner, or airport terminal, and enjoy the blog.

Monday, March 28, 2011

Free Short Story

I've written and published a free short story on Smashwords. The title is Mommy, Where Do Baby Unicorns Come From?

I was sort of thinking about the medieval belief that only an innocent young maiden can trap a unicorn. You can see tapestries depicting the famous unicorn hunt in the Cloisters, a branch of the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York (I highly recommend the trip if you're close enough and enjoy art), in which a maiden is used to lure the unsuspecting unicorn in.

Also, throughout literature, the unicorn is often shown as a creature that can only approach the innocent and that shuns the...erm...let's go with the term "worldly."

So I got to thinking. If a unicorn shuns the non-innocent, how do unicorns make a foal? A unicorn couldn't shun itself, certainly. So how do unicorn foals come about? Take a look and find out!

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Fitness Competition?

Some people I know have decided to have a fitness competition. This perked my interest at first as I remembered doing JROTC in high school (it was mandatory where I went) and having to run a mile and a half for their PT test. Well, turns out that it's not quite like that.

The challenge isn't how many situps can you do, or how far you can run. Nope. It's how much weight you can lose in two months.

Now, this sounds good at first. A lot of people getting together and losing weight. Wonderful! It's nice to see people taking an interest in their health. Only, when you make it a competition for money, I'm willing to bet that there are going to be people who work themselves too hard or try the starvation approach. It's not healthy to lose weight too fast.

Another problem is that it excludes the skinnier people from participating. Maybe they'd like to bulk up or work on their endurance. Fitness is not just about weight!

Lastly, and least importantly, fairness is an issue. If you go by the percentage of body fat dropped, it's much easier for someone who is extremely heavy and never worked out to drop weight than someone who has been working out and is currently trying to work their way off a weight plateau.

All in all, I'm just not sure that this is the healthiest idea these people have ever had. It's not like those reality shows who have doctors and nutritionists at their beck and call. There are none of those to make sure the participants aren't hurting themselves.

That said, I think I'll abstain from this competition and hope no one develops a disorder.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Dreams, Radiation, and Islands

I've been having a lot of very strange dreams lately, especially regarding my family. My family isn't the most normal one. Nor is it the strangest one. We've got our problems and our good points. It's been a little strained there lately though, so my brain is probably telling me to get off my butt and fix it. I can't wait to get back to normal dreams. Sometimes dreams of being in a plane and plummeting toward earth or dreams about World War II are preferable to family stress.

As for the whole radiation mess, I have to admit that I've been following the news as much as I can. I'm kinda wondering just how bad the area is going to get. When the plume of radiation made for California, a friend out there told me that the entire area he was in had sold out of geiger counters. Not that they got a huge dose of radiation. It's supposed to be very low. All the same, a friend's blog made me wonder where all that water they're spraying into the reactors is going. Radioactive water is still radioactive, after all. I'm no scientist, but that doesn't exactly conjure up good images.

On another note, I am looking to find out how the shrine and hostel on Kinkasan Island did with the quake and tsunami. It was supposed to be the closest island to the quake. Anyone know?

Friday, March 18, 2011

Outlines and Blogs

The outline for the second Irks book is finished finally, and I'm back to the normal routine of writing. It feels good. I also have a couple short story ideas in my head that I'm slowly working out when I have a moment or two to breathe.

My co-author is on vacation for a while, so no Cat o' Nine writing is being done for at least the next week or so.

So, I had an annoyingly stupid moment trying to create a Wordpress blog. I figured it allows you to customize more, so it would be a nice thing to do, and maybe I could add new things to the blog. I'll admit that I'm not the most savvy person when it comes to working with CSS or HTML. CSS may as well be ancient Egyptian as far as I'm concerned, and HTML...well, I can speak it as well as a two-year-old can speak English.

I created the blog, and immediately was frustrated by the UI. Alright. I counted to ten and began poking around. I'm not a patient person...at all. So with the help of a friend, I eventually played around with themes.

The blog ended up very weird looking, so I figured I could do something similar to what I did with this blog. I thought I could delete it and start from scratch. So I deleted it. I ignored the warnings about never being able to recover it (I thought this applied to your settings, text, artwork, and all the configuring you've done).

Then I find out, that nope, they really meant it. Can't recover the blog at all.

Well, I messed up. I'm frustrated beyond belief. And I don't think I'll ever use Wordpress again. I've come to the conclusion that it's just not for beginners who like to leave the mystery of HTML and CSS to others. If anything, I'll make a website in the future. At least I won't have a weird UI to sort out, and I can learn HTML and CSS at my leisure.

So, take something away from my moment of stupidity. If some website assures you that you cannot recover something when you delete it, do a little poking around before you actually do.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Writer's Block

So, I was suffering from a bout of writer's block earlier today. Mark helped me past it, but I thought that I'd share a few things I do to get past writer's block today.

1. Outline, outline, outline. I start with main points that I want to hit in a story, then further detail the outline until the section I'm writing is mostly scripted out.
2. Brainstorm with my muse (Mark). Sometimes just having someone to discuss with and throw out ideas can help you generate your own again.
3. Play games. Other times, my mind just needs a break.
4. Sleep. This is the ultimate "reboot brain" tactic.
5. If all else fails, I consider the idea that I may have just wrote myself into a corner and consider revising.

Hope this helps others out there with their own writers block. If anyone has any tips of their own, I'd love to hear them!

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Cat o' Nine

New book has been published with co-author Mark Turton. It's called Cat o' Nine. You can pick it up at Amazon.com currently. Going to get it up on Smashwords as soon as I can.

I'm hoping that I never need to publish two books in the same week ever again. It's far too much proofreading and editing all at once. I think I'll be trying to stagger them as much as possible from now on.

I think I'm going to keep this post short. I just returned from Wing Chun, and my arms feel like lead. Take care!

Friday, March 11, 2011


I'm starting to think that maybe I spend a little too much time in fantasy books and movies.

I saw the awful news about Japan. Earthquake + Tsunami = tragedy. I stared at the computer screen in horror as a burning building was swept along over fields and houses. I felt for those poor people.

But I couldn't silence the side of me that just seems to find the humor in everything either. After an earthquake, and a tsunami, and a whirlpool that had me looking for Jack Sparrow and Davy Jones, I was sitting back and thinking, "Now how cool would it be if Godzilla just rose from the sea?"

Also, seeing the blazing rubble riding atop a tsunami, I couldn't help but think "Wow, that's cool looking!" and start humming "Surfin' USA" while imagining a surfer navigating the mess of debris.

Somewhere out there, an angel is making a note of this and shaking his head.

Maybe it's because, compared to some of the things I see on the news, I really haven't had too many calamities befall me. I'm not saying my life is perfect. Just, I've never had my home and everyone I love swept away in a matter of moments. Seeing it happen on Youtube and CNN...perhaps humor is my mind's way of coping with things like that.

I really couldn't believe what I was seeing when I saw it. My heart goes out to all the people who have lost either their homes or loved ones, and I hope my friends there are safe and well.

To find out or give information about someone in Japan currently, use Google's Person Finder.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Read an E-Book Week Promotion

So, every March over at Smashwords.com, they have a "Read an E-Book Week." It's a pretty nice idea, I thought, so I downloaded an e-book myself from an author who only posted it maybe four days ago.

Well, the storyline is good, but I'm having issues with the sheer number of typos in it. I wish authors would proofread their work more often than they do. Every time I come across a typo it literally jars me out of the world the author has created.

Typos aside though, The Three Irks is currently discounted on Smashwords as part of Read an E-Book Week. Enter the code RAE25 at checkout to take advantage of it for the next few days!

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

First-Time Author

Well, I did it. I finally finished that book I've been working on. And it's on Kindle and Smashwords (see the links at the side of this page if you're curious).

Doesn't sound like much when I put it that way, but it feels good to get the first one done. It clears the path for more to come, and makes it seem like a much less daunting task going forward.

I've already begun working on the outline for the second book, but it's going slow at the moment while I edit/proofread a different book with a co-writer. That's something I never knew: how hard it is to manage different writing projects all at one time. Add that to a full-time job, and it takes up almost all my spare time. I enjoy it though. Very much!

Anyway, I hope this is the first of many blog posts. Welcome to the site and enjoy.