KingMidget's Ramblings

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The Disappointed Housewife is LIVE!

Kevin Brennan’s new on-line literary journal is live! Go there, check it out. You may even find a piece from yours truly.

WHAT THE HELL

The Disappointed Housewife is alive and well and living in a newly disclosed location: thedisappointedhousewife.com.

First of all, please navigate to the site and immediately follow. We need to build a readership in a hurry so that all the terrific, intrepid writers can get plenty of eyeballs on their work.

While you’re there, poke around, read the Editor’s Note, the mission statement, and the submission guidelines. Then sample some of the pieces I’ve gathered for the launch. There’s already some fiction, a number of poems, a couple of essays, and a graphic piece. I already have more things lined up for later in the week too.

You can browse the site by scrolling down the main page. Everything is there. But you can also use the navigation bar on the right to select one of the categories: Fiction, Essays, Poetry, and Faux Forms & Genres. Later the site will…

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A Good Piece

I’m not even sure how to introduce this piece about Trump, racism, and America. So just go read it. It’s short and I think it’s spot on about a lot of America. Trump has given a lot of Americans permission to do and think and say what they felt they couldn’t for years. And for those of you who want to say “yeah, there are a bunch of racists in America,” you would be right, but you would be missing the point.

A Video For Today

If his words don’t give you the chills …

A Song For The Day

I listened to this song today on the drive into work and thought about posting it here. I considered the possibilities it represents to talk about a hot button issue of the day and pondered what I would write in connection with the video. As the day wore on, I considered just posting the song and people could do with it what they wanted.

I really have grown tired of the political debate in this country. The outraged left and the outraged right, fueled by the no holds barred world of twitter, blogs, and a 24 hour news cycle that absolutely must be fed, have completely destroyed the possibility of having any kind of rational, intelligent, productive debate on the issues of the day.

So …

Why bother?

With the President allegedly complaining about letting people from shithole countries into this country, we continue the degradation of how we talk about these things. I’ll admit that I’m torn on the issue of immigration.

One the one hand, I would like to believe in the ideals expressed on the Statue of Liberty. That we are a beacon of hope and haven for the oppressed and the yearning. For many years we have been that. And I think it important that we keep that concept in mind.

On the other hand, no country can live with open borders. In my ideal world, there are no more countries. But that’s not reality, so we have to deal with reality, and in that reality driven world, it is simply unworkable on so many different levels — political, social, economic — that a country simply lets in anybody who wants to come in.

On the other hand, for decades now the United States through its exercise of power, military might, dominance, and a believe in its right to influence the affairs and lives of other countries and peoples has wreaked havoc in most corners of the globe. (How does a round object have corners? I don’t know.) Because of that, I feel like we have an obligation to continue on as that beacon of hope and opportunity for those oppressed, at least in part because of our own actions throughout the world.

On the other hand, we are a country of laws and those who arrived here illegally have violated the law. If we ignore that and just let anybody in, what message are we sending? What reasonable limits are we placing if … well, you’re here, I guess we’re stuck with you. (And that sounds of pejorative, but I don’t mean it that way. It’s just that immigration seems to be one of those areas where we allow facts to be established from which there is no return, and I believe we can do better than that.)

On the other hand … well, at the end of the day I remain an idealist. I still believe that we can be a land of hope and dreams for those who struggle and strive for freedom and opportunity. I do not believe that any country is a shithole. I don’t believe that any individual should be tarred with the worst of their religion or their country of origin or any other label. I don’t believe our immigration policy should be defined by what is best for us. I believe that our immigration policy should be defined by a variety of factors, including what is best for our country but also what is right given our role in the world. At the end of the day, I do believe in a land of hope and dreams.

 

Another Reason to Dislike Amazon

A few years ago, as I explored different publishing options, I learned about Amazon’s publishing arm. They have a number of imprints and I chalked that information away for when I finally get to the place where I’m ready to publish again. What could be better than being published by Amazon and then promoted by Amazon — the only game that’s left in town?

A few weeks ago, I downloaded a book from Amazon. A book that was heavily promoted by Amazon. On the lists. Recommended. All the things an author wants. (I’m going to avoid naming the book or the author because this isn’t about the author).

I started reading. Early on there is a scene in a cafe that is such a mess, so horribly described and so contradictory in the description, I almost moved on to the next book in my queue. But I didn’t, I stuck with it. And now, 2/3 of the way through the book, I’m ready to toss it aside again. There was a moment in the middle where I started to get sucked into the story, but it’s so repetitive and continues to be so messy as well, I just think I’m done with it.

The publisher of this fine piece of literature? Lake Union Publishing. One of Amazon’s imprints. So, they choose to publish a book that is a mess and then use their marketing might to push the book? Isn’t that an antitrust problem? Is this really a club I want to be a part of if I ever get to the publishing point again?

I don’t know … money versus pride. Which is more important?

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