Autosurfer by Erich Schneider
Mon Sep 5 04:15:02 PDT 2016
I firmly believe that every home page should have a blurb describing the
author's life so that when people run into each other they can skip past
the boring basics and jump straight to that awkward phase of not knowing
what to say.
My life, the latest: October 2023
Hello. I'm John Truscott Reese, an unpublished, future-critically-acclaimed
writer of speculative fiction, just coming off a 24-year side project of
teaching computers not to destroy themselves.
The London placement I mentioned in the last installment
ended early, and I returned home, sad to have jerked my cats around by
flying them to another country for what turned out to be only a three-month
trip, but happy to see my special lady friend again. The Robinhood job
ended in October, 2022.
When my disgruntlement at Google began, I remember thinking: it would be
nice if I had the option of not working, so that I have multiple exit
paths. And that idea wormed itself into my brain.
I read up on how to retire early -- how much money you would need, and how
to manage it. I read about FIRE, which
is a model for financial independence and retiring early by cutting
back heavily on your expenses, and the more appealing FatFIRE, where you use the same
math, but more money, to live well without working. And due to, maybe, hard
work, but also, definitely, a lot of luck and a few years of planning,
I've reached the point where I don't need to work anymore to live the
middle class lifestyle to which I've become accustomed. I don't have a
firehose of money that I can tap any time I want to travel the world, or
eat ridiculous food, or donate to political causes; those things require a
little more planning now, but I have time to plan and be intentional.
I've been working on finding the right amount of structure to
enjoy free time but still do creative things. I have been making shrubs
(drinking vinegar) with fruit from the farmer's market, barrel-aging
cocktails, learning Portuguese and Esperanto on Duolingo, trading options,
doing daily free writes, and nerding out on notebooks, pens,
credit card optimization, and the structure of fictional narrative.
Sometimes I sit down for hours to read or write (though I get up at 10
minutes to the hour, every hour, to walk around in circles for 250 steps,
when the Fitbit tells me to); once in a while, I take an edible and
wander around the city listening to
I'm ramping up for
National Novel Writing Month by
re-reading the novel I've been working on for 22 years, which is now 1090
pages long, and my plan is to write to the climax this year.
I've been attempting National
Novel Writing Month every year since 2002. The goal is to
write 50000 words of fiction during the calendar month of November. I
failed in 2002, 2003, 2004, 2008, 2012, and 2022, and won in 2005, 2006, 2007,
2009, 2010, 2011, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020, and
2021. Every year (except for 2016, where I took a break and wrote
pastiche in someone else's universe) I work on the same "novel," writing
additional chapters which I will later concatenate, although this is
technically forbidden by the Nanowrimo rules. So if you're a stickler,
I've never won and you can go to hell.
- Titles of yearly efforts:
- Flowers Become Screams 2002: The Heresiarchs
- Flowers Become Screams 2003: Auto-da-fe
- Flowers Become Screams 2004: Litany for the Eldest Battle-Queen
- Flowers Become Screams 2005: The Ibex and the Aurochs
- Flowers Become Screams 2006: The Country of the Stars Falling
- Flowers Become Screams 2007: Till the Moon Burns us Away
- Flowers Become Screams 2008: The Garden of Grieving Memory
- Flowers Become Screams 2009: Feynman Diagram Over a Fleshpit
- Flowers Become Screams 2010: The Sea is Cold and the Sky is
- Flowers Become Screams 2011: Of or Pertaining to the Seething
- Flowers Become Screams 2012: The Dance that Ends the World
- Flowers Become Screams 2013: Cocaine and Sweetmeats, lama
- Flowers Become Screams 2014: Chooser of the Slain
- Flowers Become Screams 2015: The Law of Milk and Horn
- Break, 2016: To Sleep in Turpentine
- Flowers Become Screams 2017: The Vault of Faith
- Flowers Become Screams 2018: The Forlorn Mother and the Cult of
- Flowers Become Screams 2019: The Courtship of the Jaguar and the
- Flowers Become Screams 2020: Grief of the Jaguar/Temple of the
- Flowers Become Screams 2021: Eclosion
- Flowers Become Screams 2022: The Cassowaries of Fimbulwinter
I tried and failed Script
Frenzy in 2007 -- it's the screenplay equivalent of
Nanowrimo: write a 20000-word screenplay during the calendar month
of June. I got about halfway through, but I lost momentum when my
cat died on the 7th, and I never got all the way back in the game.
It didn't help that the story sucked.
- Scriptfrenzy 2007: The Apparatus War
- Collecting my brother's thoughts on
Columbo, 1970s tv detective.
a web-based gale client.
Some of it in product
I went to a
school in Mexico
experience I would recommend to others.
Ongoing mysterious notes to myself.
Feeding myself, September, 2000, and the
demo programs, a summer research project in 1998.
a mesh editing tool that incorporates mesh subdivision and
linear time Taubin smoothing to allow real-time smooth deformations,
for CS 174c, 1997.
editor for parallel programs written in mcc, for CS 139c, 1997.
game I wrote for CS174a, 1996.
synthesis, project for