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20 Sci-Fi Story Ideas (Link)

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I stumbled across this blog post that offers a nice selection of potential science fiction story ideas. There are several good ones in there, and one in particular stood out to me. Check them all out by following the link below, and I’ll post my favorite right under it.

20 Sci-Fi Story Ideas (from The Write Practice)

My personal favorite:

12. Ten years from now, scientists figure out how to stop human aging and extend life indefinitely—but every time someone qualifies for that boost, someone else has to die to keep the surplus population in check. Oh, it’s all very humane; one’s descendants get a huge paycheck. Write from the perspective of someone who just got a letter in the mail saying they’re the one who has to die.

Slander, Gossip, and Evil Speech Against Others

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This is the one problem I fight most with while in the workplace. I can try to blame a short temper, other people, etc, but the truth is it always comes back to me and the ability to control my own tongue.

I need to recognize my own triggers, pray for patience, and stop anything that may encourage others to continue should they start. Too often I hear the words, “I’m only human, we make mistakes and are going to fall.” But that’s become more of an excuse when it’s laughed off and the backbiting continues.

I didn’t start the week out with a goal, but after tonight, my “new” goal of the week is to try and stamp out this bad habit. No matter if there are tiny “truths” to what is being said, there’s a time and a place to discuss people, as the article below explains, but just down right running them into the ground isn’t one of them.

James 3:2 – If we can control our speech, we can control all areas of our lives.

Link: Slander, Gossip, and Evil Speech Against Others from GospelWay.com

2016 Reading Challenge

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Every year, Goodreads has a Reading Challenge. To participate, all you have to do is pledge that you are going to read “X” number of books by the end of the current year. As long as you log the books through Goodreads, it will keep count of your progress during the challenge.

For 2015, for example, I pledged that I wanted to read 100 books. The final count was …

Untitled

Yes, 26. I fell a little short of my goal. This year, I’ve decided to lower my expectations and pledge a little less as my goal. So for the 2016 Goodreads Reading Challenge, I’ve pledged to read 75 books. I know, for me that’s near impossible, but darn it I’m going to try.

Care to join the challenge with me? Head over to Goodreads and sign up, and send me a friend request, too, while you’re there!

-J

10,000 Character Twitter Posts

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While I haven’t been on top of the whole possible Twitter-Gate controversy, or whatever it’s been labeled by the media, I do have an opinion. I know, I know! “But James, we don’t care what your opinion is. Besides, it’s just a rumor, anyways! Geez, grow up!” I hear ya, I hear ya. But all the same, I’m due a blog post, so here we go.

From The Guardian: Twitter shares hit new low on rumored shift to 10,000-character tweets

So, Twitter is rumored to be considering expanding the character limit of user tweets. Currently, you have a 140-character limit per tweet. This leads to multiple tweets if you have a large message you’re trying to twitter-logoprovide another user or larger audience. In other words, if you have a lot to say, you’re going to be breaking it down into several short tweets just to say it. This also means you’re going to have to decide how best to break up this message. How many words per tweet, do you include punctuation? Do you use abbreviations, acronyms? It can get complicated, so for the most part, the folks I associate with try to stay within 140-characters for a single solid message. Ta-da! Microblogging.

Here’s the thing, I’m sitting here explaining what Twitter is and how to use it, but you already know that! But that’s just my introduction into how I formed my opinion on the 10,000-character increase. Here it is: I don’t think they should do it.

Why?

Because if you’re prepared to write 10,000-characters, you’re prepared to write even more than that. That, my friends, is what Facebook is for. Better yet, that’s what blogs are for. Emails, remember them? No character limit if you want to send a long message to a person in private. Once you expand the tweet limit to 10,000-characters, you’re asking for congestion somewhere down the line.

If you want to expand the character count on tweets, start small. Stick to what you’re good at, which is “microblogging,” and just tack on a few more characters. I think 200-character tweets would be perfect. We’ve already become accustomed to 140-characters, so by giving us 60 more, you’re doing us a huge favor by allowing us to also throw in some punctuation here and there.

The biggest problem Twitter really has is the fact that replying to someone uses up valuable real estate in a 140-character tweet. If you want to do everyone a favor, fix it, somehow, to where @xyz reply targets don’t use up our character space. Have it designated to a different line, sort of like the To: field in an email. I’ve seen numerous times where several different people will be involved in a  tweet, and halfway down they’re replying back to a dozen people and are left with only enough room for maybe two or three words in reply. Come on, that’s something that needs to be addressed right there.

No, I don’t think expanding the character count by that great a number is a good idea. Does something need to be done about other issues, such as @replies taking up valuable space? Yes. And while I get that expanding character values would help that, it isn’t a real answer to the problem.

Speaking of problems you already need to address, how about we get rid of that horrible “Moments” tab? Especially on the mobile side. Ugh, how annoying. And they’ve already changed their “Favorite” button to “Like,” just like Facebook. Heck, it sounds like that’s what Twitter’s trying to do! They’re trying to make it a clone of Facebook. Longer posts, “like” buttons, Moments. Next thing you know they’ll be trying to rename it to something goofy like TweetBook.

That’s my $0.02 worth.

But I’m out of time, folks, they’re giving me the sign behind the curtain to wrap it up. So have a good night, a good day, a great week. I’ll see you on the other side.

-J

New “Podcasts Worth A Listen”

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I just updated my Podcasts Worth A Listen page with my current playlist. Added:

Sneak Attack! An Original D&D Adventure

You Lose! Podcast

Married to the Games

If you’re looking for something new to listen to, go check these shows out. Good crews on each, good topics and the shows are all entertaining.