Cold as balls


Yeah, yeah. Real original, I know. | Kenneth Lowe via LG smartphone and Weather.com app

It is relentlessly, mercilessly cold out right now, but it is fortuitous all the same, since a friend passed me some supremely useful criticisms of my latest short story, another one dealing with the detective, Blackdale. I’ve posted his first story here.

This harrowing tale finds him in the midst of a theft investigation set against the backdrop of an awful winter, written largely while I was actually in Colombia, where there is no such thing as an awful winter. The story had several problems with it that I am working through, with my friend’s assistance.

Read more…

NaNoWriMo Day 17 – Oops


Oh, no, this just happened. What could I have done differently? Lucky Strike Chicago, Nov. 2014 | Kenneth Lowe

Well, it seems we won’t make word count today unless we stay up far, far too late. This is what I get for being social and wanting to see one of the four movies I haven’t gotten around to yet. At least I was at a surplus (though not enough to not be behind).

I am waiting for a later showtime than I thought, but at least the AMC on Illinois Street has a combination restaurant/bar/bowling alley to keep a man occupied.

Stay tuned for the gripping drama of how I get my groove back!

Balls, but it’s cold


Standing guard beneath a tarp. Statue in front of the Iglesia San Francisco in Popayán, Colombia. Nov. 2013. | Kenneth Lowe

Seriously, how do you gringos stand it? Above image is from about the same time last year, when I was galivanting around Colombia and not hiding under a blanket because my apartment leaks heat like the NSA’s underpaid code monkeys leak awful security secrets.

I did have another successful night of writing last night. As usual, I seem to stumble along at first, then get to the truly exciting part and just unleash my limit break.

I want to write more about what this experience is teaching me about just forcing myself to produce no matter the mood or time constraints, but I fear I have little insight into what it practically means. It has instilled some confidence in me; the feeling that I can just push ahead and deal with the loose ends I’ve left behind later is particularly liberating.

At the same time, it is depressing how much more needs to get done when set against how long I have been writing this damn thing. This isn’t even the first time I have declared myself in it to win it, but it is the most serious single push I’ve made on it ever, I think.

Anyway, more to come today as we hit the halfway point. I was up above 24,000 words last night, so meeting the halfway goal will be a cinch.

NaNoWriMo Day 8 – Rocking the House


The House, DeKalb, IL | Kenneth Lowe

I’m in DeKalb this evening for a friend’s birthday party, but I still managed to get in 1,462 words toward the total today while sitting around at The House with a bagel and a mocha. Considering I am more than a full day ahead of goal, this is hardly a failure.

So who is the man? I am. I am the man.

Out among the rain

A Jamundeño enjoying the festivities. | Jamundí, Colombia, Halloween 2013.

A Jamundeño enjoying the festivities. | Jamundí, Colombia, Halloween 2013.

The weather has been somewhat erratic lately. As we enter October, we haven’t quite entered autumn yet, which remains my favorite time of year. I missed it completely in Colombia last year, leaving the country in mid-October, before it ever really even got nippy out.

I’m glad it’s coming back now, even if it is slow to come.

Tonight it is under the false impression that it is raining outside, and so at this late hour I’m settling in to write a bit more of Long September. I’ve reached a difficult part, where many moving pieces all collide at once. I’ve determined I’m going to shoot my through it, and not be hamstrung by worries.

The picture is a throwback to the spooky time of year that begins now. The houses down the street have put up the pumpkins and ghosts. It seems as good a time as any to write of places we don’t dare to go.