Addicted to Persuasion

I think everyone should listen to THIS podcast, especially if the first thing you do in the morning and the last thing you do at night is check your phone.

Here is a brief description of the podcast:

“In this episode of the Waking Up podcast, Sam Harris speaks with Tristan Harris about the arms race for human attention, the ethics of persuasion, the consequences of having an ad-based economy, the dynamics of regret, and other topics.”

Here is my summary: the major players (Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Snapchat, Instagram) are engaged in a contest to see who can take up more of your time (and sell it) . . . you are the loser as they persuade you to dance to their bidding and in the process replace meaningful endeavors in life with unhealthy substitutes.

OK, so that’s nothing new. We all recognize that since computers came on the scene, we’ve dedicated more and more time to interfacing with them.

What is not obvious to everyone is how the major players — and also minor players — use what we have learned about the human mind to manipulate you into spending more and more time in their particular playground.

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Posted in Arches NP, Black & White, Musings Stuff, Opinion, Personal, Photography, Photography Stuff, Scenery, Travel Stuff, Utah, Utah, Writing Stuff | Tagged , , , , | 10 Comments

On Writing and Self-Publishing

Let me make one thing perfectly clear . . . I don’t know jack shi . . . er, I mean, I am not an expert on writing, publishing, selling books, book publishing, bookbinding . . . look, just assume that if it has to do with the written word in any form, I am the opposite of an expert.

No, not even that because that would make me an amateur and that label puts a mantle on my shoulders giving the impression I know something or other. 

But, you know, I gots me opinions. I could go into a long qualifier about how my opinions are only applicable to my particular circumstances. Instead, please refer to the opening paragraph. 

While I know squat about it, I’ve written many blog posts about writing as it pertains to me. Let me give you — the loyal reader — a quick refresher as I also instruct new readers on the profundity of my writing introspections.  

If already familiar with my writing posts, skip down to where I talk about self-publishing.

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Posted in Musings Stuff, Opinion, Stuff, Writing, Writing Stuff | Tagged , , | 20 Comments

Supporting a writer

Paige Addams is a beta reader for some of my stuff and I was a beta reader for parts of Tales of Ejoma (Dual Realms Book 1) available today for sale at Amazon. 

Since WordPress cut ties with Alexa, I no longer have a feel for the readership of this blog but were I pressed to guess, I would say “What do you mean, ‘guess?’ I need data!

What I’m trying to say is this: I don’t know how many readers of this blog are in the target audience for a tale of romance spanning different worlds steeped in magic and intrigue. Oh, also action. Lots of actions.  

What I can say is that having read parts of the work, both the characters and the stories held my attention. Understand, I’m also not the target audience. I mean, I include romance in what I write, but from a different perspective and with a different payoff.  

I’ve been told I can write female characters, but what I can’t do — and I know I can’t do — is write romance from a female perspective. I don’t beat myself up for it since — don’t you know — I’m a guy. 

There is a sample from the book included in THIS INTERVIEW. As part of marketing the book, Paige was also interviewed HERE

Prior to the release of the book, Paige wrote a number of posts explaining the world she created, providing a glossary for the language she developed, and giving an overview of the characters of the world.  

So, if interested in romance and magic and action — or if you know someone who is interested in the genre — for less than the cost of a cup of coffee, consider . . . 

Tales-of-Ejoma-800 Cover reveal and Promotional

Disclaimer: I have no financial or any other stake in the success of this work and I was not solicited for this post.

That’s it. This post has ended . . . except for the stuff below.

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Note: if you are not reading this blog post at DisperserTracks.com, know that it has been copied without permission, and likely is being used by someone with nefarious intention, like attracting you to a malware-infested website.  Could be they also torture small mammals.

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Please, if you are considering bestowing me recognition beyond commenting below, refrain from doing so.  I will decline blogger-to-blogger awards.   I appreciate the intent behind it, but I prefer a comment thanking me for turning you away from a life of crime, religion, or making you a better person in some other way.  That would mean something to me.

If you wish to know more, please read below.

About awards: Blogger Awards
About “likes”:   Of “Likes”, Subscriptions, and Stuff

Note: to those who may click on “like”, or rate the post; if you do not hear from me, know that I am sincerely appreciative, and I thank you for noticing what I do.

. . .  my FP ward  . . . chieken shit.

Finally, if you interpret anything on this blog as me asking or wanting pity, encouragement, or advice to better my life, know my subtle mix of irony, sarcasm, and humor is blowing right by you.

Posted in Stuff, Writing Stuff | Tagged , , , | 5 Comments

Topaz Plugins Spring Sale

Topaz Labs are having their Spring Sale event, 40% off ending on the 18th, I think. Regular readers know I make use of a lot of their plugins and some might be even interested in buying some. 

If you can afford it, you might want to shoot for the whole bundle (17 products for $499) but you can also get just the ones that interest you. Be aware that while their newer offerings run as standalone programs, the majority of them require another program (hence the name “plugins”). They do offer a program you can buy if you don’t have something like Photoshop or Aperture or Lightroom that will let you run all of the plugins.

Below, I offer examples of my previous efforts.

While not all the plugins can be easily demonstrated, it’s also true that many of the plugins have a large number of options and I opt to show only a few. 

Hopefully, it’s enough to give you, the potentially interested reader, a taste of the plugins and what they can do. You should check out the examples online.

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So, on to my previous efforts . . . 

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Posted in Photo-effects, Photography | Tagged , , | 21 Comments

I am, therefore, I muse

I never know how to introduce these posts. One could well argue that the point of these posts, the purpose for their existence, is to show off a few photos.

On the other hand, given their quality, one could rightly assume the photos are but sacrificial offerings to the brilliant musings therein . . . you know, if only these were brilliant musings.

Right . . . that sets up the first topic: Photography.

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Posted in Atheism, Colorado, Musings Stuff, Personal, Photography, Photography Stuff, Politics, Religion, Scenery, Sunsets, Wyoming | Tagged , , , , , , | 16 Comments

Flash Challenge – Coming Home

terribleminds is the site of Chuck Wendig, a “novelist, screenwriter, and game designer.”

His current flash challenge (HERE):

“I want you to write the end of a long journey. . . It’ll require you to bring some skills to bear to make it work, to give us all the information we need, and to make it more than a snapshot in time or just a vignette.”

Readers are to pick one and go off to a dark corner and write a 1,500 words flash piece, apparently applying “skill,” whatever that means. 

I own that skill. As for writing something . . .  

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Posted in Fiction, Flash Fiction, Musings Stuff, Writing, Writing Stuff | Tagged , , , | 9 Comments

Catching up – Nikon P900

It’s the end of the day . . . just a regular day. We exercised, cleaned, ate, and watched $56M worth of armament hit a base in Syria. Lots of opinions expressed forcefully and with passion. 

Perfect time for me to look back at photos that are lounging around my drive, waiting to be launched onto the Internet. These are free. Well, quasi-free. I spent some time on them but since it’s part of what keeps me level, it’s not a burden. 

This one immediately had me thinking of our elected politicians and various pundits . . . 

So, out for a drive, we passed a small herd of foraging goats. This is where I was glad of the long zoom . . . I mean, just look at them horns.

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Posted in Animals, Birds, Flowers, Photography, Photography Stuff | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 14 Comments