The Books That Wrote Me 2018

Scroll down to the bottom of this page or click here for an introduction to my “maximalist” writing from 2018.


2018 Week 1: The Week Ending Saturday, January 6th[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 15,100 words • Topics: Pottscasting hardware and software • software mix busses • other recording options • used audio gear shopping • level shifters • the Bluetooth disaster • books completed in 2017 • other books of note • viewing and listening • Star Wars: The Last Jedi (2017 film) • music • Galactica 1980 (TV series) • Cy’s voice: Gary Owens • into the vortex • mice • comb filtering • cell phone minutes • money news • Stalker (1979 film) • the Unconference • Fiestaware • Blaze Pizza


2018 Week 2: The Week Ending Saturday, January 13th[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 7,000 words • Topics: a Fiestaware festival • lost backup drives • T-Mobile • The Hobbit by J. R. R. Tolkien, chapter 3, “A Short Rest” • refactoring my code • modeling clarity • the programming challenge • paying back technical debt • maintenance programming • the freeze up • Star Trek: The Next Generation season 4, episode 2, “Family,” and episode 11, “Data’s Day”


2018 Week 3: The Week Ending Saturday, January 20th[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 12,200 words • Topics: Paddington 2 (2017 film) • I. T. stuff • the Reloop Mixage • the missing hard drives • the mystery of box 87 • organizing the batteries • keychain troubles • The Hobbit by J. R. R. Tolkien, chapter 5, “Riddles in the Dark” • The Compleat Enchanter: The Magical Misadventures of Harold Shea by Fletcher Pratt and L. Sprague de Camp • and more snow • fixing the keychain • Star Trek: The Next Generation season 4, episode 12, “The Wounded” • a meatier meteor • one of those weeks • lesser-known works by Tolkien • Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix by J. K. Rowling • More Alive and Less Lonely: On Books and Writers by Jonathan Lethem • on Philip K. Dick’s novels • The Hobbit by J. R. R. Tolkien, chapter 6: “Out of the Frying Pan Into the Fire” • Star Trek: The Next Generation season 4, episode 21, “The Drumhead” • Joe Frank • Recycle Ann Arbor • dinner gets demolished


2018 Week 4: The Week Ending Saturday, January 27th[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 19,500 words • Topics: The Hobbit by J. R. R. Tolkien, chapter 7: “Queer Lodgings” • Windows updates ad nauseum • Sunday socialism • the Pottscast • what sample rate should I use? • is there a case for a new standard? • to save, or not to save, the original recordings? • fifty-two degrees in January • Spectre and Meltdown • the Olympus LS-10 • Sylvio (2017 film) • Dropbox: silent file synchronization failures • storing files in burning houses • my old files: an island of lost toys • Existence by David Brin • bright lights in the bedroom • Myst and realMyst • King Shing • in scarlet town • fifth disease • Existence, continued • “Queer Lodgings,” continued • candy interlude • my old book database! • my library, circa 1989 • and speaking of Wooster • Elanor’s first birthday party • what am I doing with all this writing?


2018 Week 5: The Week Ending Saturday, February 3rd[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 6,400 words • Topics: interviewing Trump supporters • Picard and Dathon at El-Adrel (Star Trek: The Next Generation season 5, episode 2, “Darmok”) • The Hobbit by J. R. R. Tolkien, chapter 8: “Flies and Spiders” • Grace’s birthday • mice again • my injured knee • money anxiety • urgent care • R. I. C. E. • ADC calibration • yo no hablo Español • The Hobbit by J. R. R. Tolkien, chapter 8: “Flies and Spiders,” continued • feeding the family • Dropbox, again • Brin, again (Existence by David Brin, continued)


2018 Week 6: The Week Ending Saturday, February 10th[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 6,800 words • Topics: Pottscast production scripts • Paradise Towers (1987 Doctor Who serial) • Battlefield (1989 Doctor Who serial) • The Happiness Patrol (1988 Doctor Who serial) • The Hobbit by J. R. R. Tolkien, chapter 9: “Barrels Out of Bond” • snow day • The Power of the Daleks (1966 Doctor Who fan edit) • The Happiness Patrol fan edit • Scream of the Shalka (2003 Doctor Who fan edit) • numbering the Doctors and doctoring the numbers • The Caves of Androzani (1984 Doctor Who fan edit)


2018 Week 7: The Week Ending Saturday, February 17th[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 7,600 words • Topics: cash flow • Firefly (TV series) • Existence by David Brin • Peter Pan and Peter Pan in Kensington Gardens by J. M. Barrie • Ash Wednesday • going out for dinner • The Ice Warriors (1967 Doctor Who fan edit) • The Mind Robber (1968 Doctor Who fan edit) • The Hobbit by J. R. R. Tolkien, chapter 11: “On the Doorstep”


2018 Week 8: The Week Ending Saturday, February 24th[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 7,200 words • Topics: taxes • Existence by David Brin • Brin’s bland centrist gaslighting • speaking power to truth • back to real existence • The Hobbit by J. R. R. Tolkien, chapter 12: “Inside Information” • a pothole in the dark • We Have Always Lived in the Castle by Shirley Jackson • The Invasion (1968 Doctor Who fan edit) (note that the fan edit is called Invasion of the Cybermen) • cleaning up school computers • an elbow injury • a grocery run • my cough • more I. T. work at home


2018 Week 9: The Week Ending Saturday, March 3rd[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 4,700 words • Topics: Maiz Mexican Cantina • The Hobbit by J. R. R. Tolkien, chapter 13: “Not at Home” • in which I prefer noble barns to Barnes and Noble • The Queen of Air and Darkness (part 2 of The Once and Future King) by T. H. White • another blizzard • The Nunc DimmitusThe Invasion (1968 Doctor Who fan edit) (note that the fan edit is called Invasion of the Cybermen) • that old house • The Tenth Planet (1966 Doctor Who fan edit) • The Enemy of the World (1967-1968 Doctor Who fan edit) • in memoriam: John Paul Knapp • The Moonbase (1967 Doctor Who fan edit)


2018 Week 10: The Week Ending Saturday, March 10th[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 7,600 words • Topics: money worries • DTE usury • the Pottscast • • The Hobbit by J. R. R. Tolkien, chapter 14: “Fire and Water” • d’Aulaire’s Book of Norse Myths by Ingri and Edgar Parin d’Aulaire • The Web of Fear (1968 Doctor Who fan edit) • The Queen of Air and Darkness (part 2 of The Once and Future King) by T. H. White • The Hobbit by J. R. R. Tolkien, chapter 15: “The Gathering of the Clouds” • in the office • A Wrinkle in Time (2018 film)


2018 Week 11: The Week Ending Saturday, March 17th[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 3,700 words • Topics: Pottscast audio experiments • unwanted I. T. work • Revenge of the Cybermen (1975 Doctor Who fan edit) • Silver Nemesis (1988 Doctor Who fan edit) • The Hobbit by J. R. R. Tolkien, chapter 16: “A Thief in the Night” • Terror of the Autons (1975 Doctor Who fan edit) • The Wheel in Space (1968 Doctor Who Audio fan edit)


2018 Week 12: The Week Ending Saturday, March 24th[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 3,900 words • Topics: configuring Squid • proxy servers for fun and profit • toum • The Hobbit by J. R. R. Tolkien, chapter 18: “The Return Journey” • alpha-1 antitrypsin deficiency • wrestling with the Squid • taming the Squid • a broken parser • Indian cooking day • The Dangerous Case of Donald Trump: 27 Psychiatrists and Mental Health Experts Assess a President by Bandy X. Lee et al.


2018 Week 13: The Week Ending Saturday, March 31st[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 4,700 words • Topics: recording the Pottscast • Private Government: How Employers Rule Our Lives (and Why We Don’t Talk about It) by Elizabeth Anderson • The Dangerous Case of Donald Trump, continued • False Choices: The Faux Feminism of Hillary Rodham Clinton edited by Liza Featherstone • The Fellowship of the Ring by J. R. R. Tolkien, book 1, chapter 1: “A Long Expected Party” • parallels between Frodo and Gollum • a visitor on business from Michel Delving in the Westfarthing • LabVIEW


2018 Week 14: The Week Ending Saturday, April 7th[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 9,700 words • Topics: Easter sick day • The Fellowship of the Ring by J. R. R. Tolkien, book 1, chapter 1: “A Long Expected Party,” continued • the question of Dwalin’s very long life • my consultation at Beaumont hospital • Star Trek: The Next Generation season 5, episodes 5 and 6, “Disaster” and “The Game” • offers on the old house • Frodo’s timeline in film and print • Gandalf’s long game • The Dangerous Case of Donald Trump, continued • The Fellowship of the Ring by J. R. R. Tolkien, book 1, chapter 2: “The Shadow of the Past” • house sale complications • audio production notes • the Pottscast setup • Boromir and Isildur • Earthshock (1982 Doctor Who Fan Edit) • the liberal dogpile on Bernie


2018 Week 15: The Week Ending Saturday, April 14th[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 5,200 words • Topics: a working audio setup • can I simplify it? • The Five Doctors (1983 Doctor Who Fan Edit) • The Dangerous Case of Donald Trump, continued • low tires • more podcast audio experiments • struggling with the “mix minus” routing • level problems • audio interfaces that might work • Full Circle (1980 Doctor Who Fan Edit) • Logopolis (1981 Doctor Who Fan Edit) • assembling the Kano • The Prefect (now re-titled as Aurora Rising) by Alastair Reynolds • Elysium Fire by Alastair Reynolds • it’s the weekend and I’m weakened • old house news


2018 Week 16: The Week Ending Saturday, April 21st[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 7,200 words • Topics: State of Decay (1980 Doctor Who fan edit) • e-space • the great vampire • this week’s Pottscast • the ice storm • the kano • A Wrinkle in Time by Madeline L’Engle • working with Team One • the rust belt in free fall • configuring the Kano • The Fellowship of the Ring by J. R. R. Tolkien, book 1, chapter 3: “Three Is Company” • the elves passing through • Gildor: a loose thread • Pippin’s song • fixing up the old house • the struggle for time • finding a happy medium: A Wrinkle in Time chapter 2 • Meg’s journey: manifesting her inner story? • The Hobbit Revisited: the videos of Lindsay Ellis • The Last Jedi revisited • Star Trek: The Next Generation Season 5, episodes 18 and 19, “Cause and Effect” and “The First Duty” • recording Moby-Dick chapters 28-31 • discovering a bug • using the Kano with a proxy server


2018 Week 17: The Week Ending Saturday, April 28th[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 7,900 words • Topics: The Fellowship of the Ring by J. R. R. Tolkien, book 1, chapter 4: “A Short Cut to Mushrooms” • the night ride to the ferry • a lesson of adulthood • sick man • The Dangerous Case of Donald Trump, continued • Jung meets Trump • who goes Trump? • the Kano and its discontents • more on my mind • Warriors’ Gate (1981 Doctor Who fan edit) • Unspeakable: Chris Hedges Talks with David Talbot about the Most Forbidden Topics in America by Chris Hedges with David Talbot • Fellowship of the Rings by J. R. R. Tolkien, book 1, chapter 5: “A Conspiracy Unmasked” • Frodo’s dream • Fellowship of the Rings by J. R. R. Tolkien, book 1, chapter 6: “The Old Forest” • Tom Bombadil • a character who doesn’t belong • part of the landscape • the Android Nexus 7


2018 Week 18: The Week Ending Saturday, May 5th[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 4,700 words • Topics: Pippin’s birthday • Fellowship of the Ring by J. R. R. Tolkien, book 1, chapter 6: “The Old Forest” • bright blue jacket • indigestion and stress • bills • DreamHost webmail failures • The Ill-Made Knight (part 3 of The Once and Future King) by T. H. White • the Kano proxy server problem


2018 Week 19: The Week Ending Saturday, May 12th[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 8,200 words • Topics: Unspeakable: Chris Hedges Talks with David Talbot about the Most Forbidden Topics in America by Chris Hedges with David Talbot • We Have Always Lived in the Castle by Shirley Jackson • Ant-Man (2015 Film) • The Fellowship of the Ring by J. R. R. Tolkien, book 1, chapter 7: “In the House of Tom Bombadil” and chapter 8: “Fog on the Barrow-downs” • a far green country • the past isn’t past • parenting • house news • LabVIEW • We Have Always Lived in the Castle by Shirley Jackson, continued • Barnes and Noble


2018 Week 20: The Week Ending Saturday, May 19th[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 6,100 Topics: The Fellowship of the Ring by J. R. R. Tolkien, book 1, chapter 10: “Strider” and chapter 11: “A Knife in the Dark” • We Have Always Lived in the Castle by Shirley Jackson • LabVIEW • DreamHost • City of Glass by Paul Auster • The Martian (2015 film, extended edition Blu-ray) • Mistaken Identity: Race and Class in the Age of Trump by Asad Haider • Thor (2011 film)


2018 Week 21: The Week Ending Saturday, May 26th[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 6,700 words • Topics: in the LabVIEW weeds • I’m not your “honey,” sweetie • The Fellowship of the Ring by J. R. R. Tolkien, book 1, chapter 11: “A Knife in the Dark” • a matter of breeding • Beren and Lúthien by J. R. R. Tolkien, edited by Christopher Tolkien • riders attack! • The Fellowship of the Ring by J. R. R. Tolkien, book 1, chapter 12: “Flight to the Ford”


2018 Week 22: The Week Ending Saturday, June 2nd[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 9,300 words • Topics: playing catch-up • hot • hotter • The Fellowship of the Ring by J. R. R. Tolkien, book 1, chapter 12: “Flight to the Ford,” continued • about last night • the storm • doctor pepper in a mason jar • fighting over chores • The Fellowship of the Ring by J. R. R. Tolkien, book 2, chapter 1: “Many Meetings” • The Return of the Shadow: The History of the Lord of the Rings Volume 1 by J. R. R. Tolkien, edited by Christopher Tolkien


2018 Week 23: The Week Ending Saturday, June 9th[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 5,700 words • Topics: producing the Pottscast • repairing the old house • someone left a bike out in the rain • our money tightrope walk • The 13 Clocks by James Thurber • The Benedict Option by Rod Dreher • the Congenital Heart Center picnic • Babylon 5 season 1


2018 Week 24: The Week Ending Saturday, June 16th[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 7,800 words • Topics: insurance paperwork • someone left a glass stuck in the drain • threading the money needle • ghost adjusters! • the lost check • The Last Starfighter (1984 film) • never pay contractors up front • the buyer backs out • a samosa wrap • What Happened to Bernie Sanders by Jared H. Beck, Esq. • “Videotape” (song by Radiohead), from the album In RainbowsBabylon 5: In the Beginning (1998 TV movie) • Family Values: Between Neoliberalism and the New Social Conservatism by Melinda Cooper


2018 Week 25: The Week Ending Saturday, June 23rd[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 5,300 words • Topics: hazardous heat • an intern • git tools on Windows • a small Indian feast • Reportage by George Orwell (1998 Folio Society boxed set) • Down and Out in Paris and London by George Orwell • the Indian feast debrief • Anthony Bourdain, Les Halles, and Brasserie Les Halles • Dee-Oh-Pee-Low, continued • Eric Blair, plongeur • another stolen debit card number • Divine Invasions: A Life of Philip K. Dick by Lawrence Sutin • a minor flood


2018 Week 26: The Week Ending Saturday, June 30th[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 11,600 words • Topics: Divine Invasions: A Life of Philip K. Dick by Lawrence Sutin, continued • Blade Runner esper retirement edition: 25th anniversary culmination (2011 bootleg soundtrack album by Vangelis et. al.) • Blade Runner trilogy 25th anniversary edition (2007 soundtrack album by Vangelis) • Blade Runner Audio Fidelity remastered edition on red vinyl and SACD (2013 soundtrack album by Vangelis) • the news • LabVIEW 2018 • yet another flood • Down and Out in Paris and London by George Orwell, continued • memory tests • Babylon 5 season 1, “The Parliament of Dreams” and “Mind War” • screaming baby • LabVIEW, again • the bane of revision control systems: meaningless illegible changes • working with an enumerated type in LabVIEW • enumerated types in C • type definitions in LabVIEW • representation matters (but it shouldn’t) • cutting teeth • spending iTunes gift cards • five hundred TV shows • Lego Ninjago: Masters of Spinjitzu season 1 • Star Wars: The Clone Wars season 1, “Ambush” • Babylon 5 season 1, “The War Prayer” • “The Electric Ant” by Philip K. Dick • breakfast sandwiches • Divine Invasions: A Life of Philip K. Dick by Lawrence Sutin, concluded


2018 Week 27: The Week Ending Saturday, July 7th[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 8,200 words • Topics: the Pottscast production session from hell • Butcher Bird by Richard Kadrey • the strange case of the boot on top of the mailbox • Down and Out in Paris and London by George Orwell, continued • the truth about restaurant work • LabVIEW: the pain intensifies • Butcher Bird by Richard Kadrey, concluded • Elric of Melniboné by Michael Moorcock • heroes and antiheroes • editions of the Elric books • books on order • Arduino, etc. • our July 4th dinner • thirteen or fourteen kids • shattered, crazed, broken, burned, and spoiled • old house update • Lego Ninjago: Masters of Spinjitzu season 1, continued, and Star Wars: The Clone Wars season 1, continued • Elric of Melniboné by Michael Moorcock, continued • car scratch fever


2018 Week 28: The Week Ending Saturday, July 14th[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 6,000 words • Topics: our small successes • the Tham Luang cave rescue • the crack-up • The Centipede Press Library of Weird Fiction: Arthur Machen by Arthur Machen with an introduction by S. T. Joshi • “The White People” by Arthur Machen, in The Centipede Press Library of Weird Fiction • “The King of the Elves” by Philip K. Dick, in Paycheck and Other Classic Stories by Philip K. Dick by Philip K. Dick, with an introduction by Roger Zelazny • controlling an MX instrument with LabVIEW • “The White People” by Arthur Machen, continued • a lack of sleep • A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle, chapter 6 • “The White People” by Arthur Machen, concluded • Babylon 5 season 1, “And the Sky Full of Stars” • Babylon 5: The Gathering (1993 TV movie and series pilot) • Elric books received • Elric of Melniboné and Other Stories by Michael Moorcock, edited by John Davey (Gollancz Michael Moorcock collection)


2018 Week 29: The Week Ending Saturday, July 21st[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 10,000 words • Topics: Won’t You Be My Neighbor? (2018 film) • Elric of Melniboné and Other Stories by Michael Moorcock, concluded •The Fellowship of the Ring by J. R. R. Tolkien, book 2, chapter 1: “Many Meetings” • Elric: The Fortress of the Pearl by Michael Moorcock, edited by John Davey (Gollancz Michael Moorcock collection) • the Pottscast • Down and Out in Paris and London by George Orwell, continued • Jhereg by Steven Brust, in The Book of Jhereg by Steven Brust (omnibus edition containing the Vlad Taltos novels Jhereg, Yendi, and Teckla) • Elric: The Fortress of the Pearl by Michael Moorcock, continued • the end of an error: closing my Amazon account • Elric revisited and spoiled • the publication history of the Elric stories • novels, novellas, novelettes, and stories • “The Dreaming City” by Michael Moorcock, in Elric: The Sailor on the Seas of Fate by Michael Moorcock, edited by John Davey (Gollancz Michael Moorcock collection)


2018 Week 30: The Week Ending Saturday, July 28th[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximtely 6,600 words • Topics: “The Stealer of Souls” by Michael Moorcock, in Elric: The Revenge of the Rose by Michael Moorcock, edited by John Davey (Gollancz Michael Moorcock collection) • The Fortress of the Pearl by Michael Moorcock, concluded • the Pottscast • bafflement in the bathroom • “Kings in Darkness” by Michael Moorcock • the pizza biscuit • “The Caravan of Forgotten Dreams” aka “The Flame Bringers” and “The Last Enchantment” by Michael Moorcock • “To Rescue Tanelorn…” by Michael Moorcock • vacations present and past • Jhereg by Steven Brust, continued • the storm and the aftermath • old house news • to be continued


2018 Week 31: The Week Ending Saturday, August 4th[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 7,500 words • Topics: vacation report part one • Jhereg by Steven Brust, continued • vacation report part two • vacation report part three • vacation report part four • old house update • back home • Yendi by Steven Brust, in The Book of Jhereg by Steven Brust (omnibus edition containing the Vlad Taltos novels Jhereg, Yendi, and Teckla) • “Dead God’s Homecoming” by Michael Moorcock, in Elric: Stormbringer! by Michael Moorcock, edited by John Davey (Gollancz Michael Moorcock collection) • the local obstetrics and gynecology monopoly • Down and Out in Paris and London by George Orwell, continued


2018 Week 32: The Week Ending Saturday, August 11th[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 8,500 words • Topics: a near miss • cleaning up the old house • a terrible painting job • Yendi by Steven Brust, concluded • “Black Sword’s Brothers” by Michael Moorcock • hot again; Abdul El-Sayed • Abdul and Nina and Bernie • producing the Pottscast • Jackson Road is burning • Dragons at Crumbling Castle and Other Tales by Terry Pratchett • Autumn by Karl Ove Knausgaard • Nixon in China (opera) by John Adams with libretto by Alice Goodman • Music from Nixon in China (orchestra of St. Luke’s, Edo de Waart, conductor, Elektra/Nonesuch CD, 1988) • steaks • Down and Out in Paris and London by George Orwell, continued • I hate past me • another obstetrician • Elric: The Sailor on the Seas of Fate by Michael Moorcock, edited by John Davey (Gollancz Michael Moorcock collection) • Elric: Stormbringer! by Michael Moorcock, continued


2018 Week 33: The Week Ending Saturday, August 18th[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximtely 13,600 words • Topics: the affogato • Grace’s new phone • recording the Pottscast • Pottscast plans • the beef stew experiment • Antifa • Sichuan pepper • water softener update • old house news • Elric: Stormbringer! by Michael Moorcock, concluded • shifting gears: reading Elric in publication order • my revised reading list • “The Eternal Champion” by Michael Moorcock • the eternal revision • unstable narratives • collaborating with the reader • another water softener update • nice things about LabVIEW • all I want to be is El Chapo • The Chapo Guide to Revolution: A Manifesto Against Logic, Facts, and Reason by Chapo Trap House • The Chapo Guide to Revolution by Chapo Trap House, continued • debating politics with uncles • in my tribe • Sanders in Michigan • Trump in Michigan • Clinton in Michigan • a protest vote • who lost the election? • none of the above: the ultimate spoiler • The Chapo Guide to Revolution by Chapo Trap House, continued • “The Greater Conqueror” by Michael Moorcock • what’s left of Elric • “The Greater Conqueror” by Michael Moorcock, concluded • “Earl Aubec of Malador” by Michael Moorcock • “The Stone Thing: A Tale of Strange Parts” by Michael Moorcock • “Sir Milk-and-Blood” by Michael Moorcock • “The Roaming Forest” by Michael Moorcock • “The Singing Citadel” by Michael Moorcock • the garbage disposal, again • The Sleeping Sorceress by Michael Moorcock


2018 Week 34: The Week Ending Saturday, August 25th[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 10,000 words • Topics: Elric: The Sleeping Sorceress by Michael Moorcock, continued • Down and Out in Paris and London by George Orwell, continued • The Sleeping Sorceress by Michael Moorcock, concluded • Elric progress report • house offers • recording the Pottscast • The Sailor on the Seas of Fate by Michael Moorcock • fixing the garbage disposal • house sale closing scenarios • The Sailor on the Seas of Fate by Michael Moorcock, continued • the wet Tahoe • intermittent fasting • considering more Moorcock • an offer on the old house • the Amulet touch screen display • Down and Out in Paris and London by George Orwell, continued • The Sailor on the Seas of Fate by Michael Moorcock, continued • “A Portrait in Ivory” by Michael Moorcock • The Revenge of the Rose by Michael Moorcock • 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968 film) • time and space • acting • 1968 in 2018 • The Revenge of the Rose by Michael Moorcock, continued • 2001, again


2018 Week 35: The Week Ending Saturday, September 1st[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 8,500 words • Topics: An appeal to civility • recording the Pottscast • low on coffee, low on sleep • the offer vanishes • The Revenge of the Rose by Michael Moorcock, continued • dragon venom • imagine sleepy dragons • a departure for Elric • The Revenge of the Rose by Michael Moorcock, continued • buggy tools • house offer update • roll for damage • The Revenge of the Rose by Michael Moorcock, continued • my Elric recommendations • other books on the pile • a text messaging bug in Android phones • The Wild Robot Escapes by Peter Brown • The Conquest of Bread by Peter Kropotkin • The Revenge of the Rose by Michael Moorcock, almost concluded


2018 Week 36: The Week Ending Saturday, September 8th[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 12,400 words • Topics: “The Flaneur des Arcades de l’Opera” by Michael Moorcock • Daughter of Dreams by Michael Moorcock • the moonbeam paper • the DSA picnic • recording the Pottscast • old house news • Elanor’s health • Daughter of Dreams by Michael Moorcock, continued • late style • like a wrecking ball • the water softener, again • Elanor’s health, continued • a counteroffer • Star Wars: The Last Plinkett Review by RedLetterMedia, reviewed • into the comments section • heat without light • the future we didn’t get • I find your lack of (good) faith disturbing • that’s where the money is • Plinkett v. Stoklasa • while I’m hating on things, I hate Big Bang Theory • I also hate my phone • a death in the family • Elanor’s health, continued • Down and Out in Paris and London by George Orwell, continued • Elanor’s health, continued • contractors from hell • The Fellowship of the Ring by J. R. R. Tolkien, book 2, chapter 2: “The Council of Elrond” • compiler gripes • Elanor’s health, some information • The Fall of Gondolin by J. R. R. Tolkien, edited by Christopher Tolkien, with illustrations by Alan Lee • Icehenge by Kim Stanley Robinson


2018 Week 37: The Week Ending Saturday, September 15th[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 10,100 words • Topics: Iron Monkey (1993 film) • the St. Francis of Assisi parish picnic • vague, unspecified housemate troubles • fourth-hand smoke • Icehenge by Kim Stanley Robinson • calculating high-precision wavelength values • 64-bit division on a 32-bit microcontroller • Hacker’s Delight, Second Edition by Henry S. Warren • go to instruction considered (mostly) unnecessary • alternative looping constructs for a C-like language • Daughter of Dreams by Michael Moorcock, continued • a special character for the Amulet GUI • my grayscale phone • The 36th Chamber of Shaolin (1978 film) • the “real” Shaolin temple • Kung Fu films • organizing our books • this old Mac Pro • Dragon Ball Z: Broly – The Legendary Super Saiyan (1993 film, 2018 Fathom Events theatrical release) • Sam’s bike • a very specific memory


2018 Week 38: The Week Ending Saturday, September 22nd[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 7,900 words • Topics: Oryx and Crake by Margaret Atwood • the water softener is fixed… again • recording the Pottscast • The Magic School Bus: Lost in the Solar System by Joanna Cole • teaching the Pluto controversy • Down and Out in Paris and London by George Orwell, concluded • perverse incentives • speech therapy for Sam • cluttering • Sam meets bike • “The Council of Elrond,” continued • a strategy for reading periodicals • cluttering, continued • My Struggle: Book Six by Karl Ove Knausgaard • LabVIEW, yet again • the challenges of sharing a kitchen • old house update


2018 Week 39: The Week Ending Saturday, September 29th[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 8,400 words • Topics: Daughter of Dreams by Michael Moorcock, concluded • Oryx and Crake by Margaret Atwood, continued • a laptop hard drive failure • Paul’s house of pancakes and laptop repair • Logic projects • Peanutbutterjam (Eileen Packard and Paul Recker) • Incredibly Spreadable by Peanutbutterjam (1984 Album) • The Bloody Chamber by Angela Carter • birthday 51 • Star Trek: The Next Generation season 5, episode 24, “The Next Phase” • editing this journal • Star Trek: The Next Generation season 5, episode 22, “Imaginary Friend” • start me up • bad eggs • good money news • the Kavanaugh confirmation hearing • smashed toes


2018 Week 40: The Week Ending Saturday, October 6th[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 13,400 words • Topics: Michaelmas • CDs received • Wide Awake in America by U2 (1985 EP) • The Singles 81>85 by Depeche Mode (1985 album, 1998 reissue) • Disintegration by The Cure (1989 album) • The Nightmare Before Christmas (1993 film soundtrack, Italian version) • The Best of Simon and Garfunkel by Simon and Garfunkel (2010 Sony collection) • Entertainment by Gang of Four (1979 album) • Arrival by Jóhann Jóhannson (original motion picture soundtrack) • Nixon in China by John Adams with libretto by Alice Goodman (orchestra of St. Luke’s, Edo De Waart conducting) • DAAP and iTunes • kids break stuff • sharing our oven • formats, formats, formats • towards a writing workflow • inserting data into Markdown files for downstream formats • inserting index entries into .docx files • chaos at home • a difficult evening • two more Moorcock omnibus editions • more formatting • generating index entries • old house news • “The Council of Elrond,” continued • formatting this journal • Tony’s Chocolonely • testing the LabVIEW setup • two Tony’s Chocolonely chocolate bars, reviewed • George’s Marvelous Medicine by Roald Dahl • The Wrecks of Time by Michael Moorcock • Tony’s Chocolonely 70% dark chocolate bar, reviewed • The Wrecks of Time by Michael Moorcock, continued • The Anatomy of Fascism by Robert Paxton • Peter Watts • The Freeze-Frame Revolution by Peter Watts • a very human story • Moderan by David Bunch • The Unknown Kerouac: Rare, Unpublished, and Newly Translated Writings by Jack Kerouac, edited by Todd Tiechen • Kano followup


2018 Week 41: The Week Ending Saturday, October 13th[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 10,900 words • Topics: Matilda (1996 film) • “Hotshot” by Peter Watts • The Wrecks of Time by Michael Moorcock, concluded • something is rotten in our basement • recording the Pottscast • “Giants” by Peter Watts • Doctor Who series 11, episode 1, “The Woman Who Fell to Earth” • Costco • our strange weather • old house news • The Anatomy of Fascism by Robert Paxton • Twitter • Chapo Trap House live at the Majestic theater • the theater • the show • we went to a fight, and a podcast broke out • a terrible meal out • renting out the house • Badenhorst Secateurs Chenin Blanc 2017 • a conversation with the heckler? • The Ice Schooner by Michael Moorcock • a visit to Stella Matutina farm • Achtung Baby by U2 (1991 album) • A University of Michigan football game day


2018 Week 42: The Week Ending Saturday, October 20th[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 11,600 words • Topics: “The Sounds of Silence” (1964 Simon and Garfunkel song) and “The Sound of Silence (1965 retitled remix) • track one: drums and bass • track two: electric guitar • track 3: Art • track 4: Paul • Sam is twelve • my meltdown • sugar • birthdays • so many reasons • aftermath • ground rules and solidarity • solidarity for never • and… stress • Doctor Who series 11, episode 2,”The Ghost Monument” • viruses • the Tahoe breaks down • the second old furnace • hypoglycemia • The Anatomy of Fascism by Robert Paxton, continued • down to the wire • editing, editing, editing • secondhand smoke • anniversary 17 • 2014 Chateau Ferrande Graves • graupel • gleaning


2018 Week 43: The Week Ending Saturday, October 27th[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 14,600 words • Topics: washing Sam’s hair • hot sauce, tried • the pumpkin farm • a chaotic day • are some LED bulbs dangerous? • racing around town • Think Outside the Books • hurrying up and waiting • using a lot of gas • hot sauce, failed • preparing dinner • not recording the Pottscast • Pascha 85% dark chocolate • 2015 Castello di Monsanto Chianti Classico • life with a housemate • sagging • a movie night failure • more messes to clean up • The Ice Schooner by Michael Moorcock, continued • a small bonfire • renting out the old house, continued • the escrow shortfall • bugs built on top of bugs • Doctor Who series 11, episode 3, “Rosa” • the damned oven • money, money, money • baby girl • sagging, continued • The Haunting of Hill House by Shirley Jackson • character names in The Haunting of Hill HouseThe Ice Schooner by Michael Moorcock, concluded • money, again • The Haunting of Hill House by Shirley Jackson, continued • Eleanor and Theodora • cleaning the oven, once again • our halloween • The Complete Sony Recordings by Philip Glass (CD boxed set) • Seventeen Seconds and Faith by The Cure (1980 and 1981 albums) • a delicious dinner: steaks, arugula, and radishes • 2017 Château Reynon Sauvignon Blanc Bordeaux


2018 Week 44: The Week Ending Saturday, November 3rd[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 12,800 words • Topics: editing music file metadata • anything but wet ears! • recording the Pottscast • my vision scare • failing at self-care • a new old dishwasher • the CBD oil experiment • Moderan by David R. Bunch • aNONradio.net • whipped cream and other delights… of parenting • hitting the overdraft line of credit • between stressors and comforts • Moderan, continued • a Halloween candy binge • Doctor Who series 11, episode 4: “Arachnids In The UK” • under pressure • confrontation day! • what now? • oven cleaning, again: now I’m even boring myself • unauthorized use of prescription medication • Moderan, continued • retroblogging the Iraq war • Moderan, continued


2018 Week 45: The Week Ending Saturday, November 10th[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 14,800 words • Topics: Veronica and Joshua’s shared birthday party • success with labetalol • Akhnaten by Philip Glass • about last night • “let’s torment dad!” • sensory overload • the fucking election • “The Stone Sky” by Italo Calvino • time, changed • meet the parents • maybe it’s not so bad? • voting • adaptations of works by Stanislaw Lem • the new Haruki Murakami novel • old house news • 2017 Arcturos Pinot Gris • boiler service fail • “The Island” by Peter Watts • plan b for the boiler • Doctor Who series 11, episode 5, “The Tsuranga Conundrum” • Ninjago: Masters of Spinjitzu, season 2, episode 13: “Rise of the Spinjitzu Master” • waiting, bills, and other boring things • Zingerman’s Roadhouse • the blood pressure chronicles • Dancepieces by Philip Glass • the heat is on • excessive technology • The Tombs of Atuan by Ursula K. Le Guin (book 2 of the Earthsea trilogy) • typographical errors in Moderan • elections • an unclear path forward • the bathroom flood • 2017 Château D’Aqueria Tavel Rose • Cluttering: Current Views on its Nature, Diagnosis, and Treatment by Yvonne van Zaalen and Isabella K. Reichel • a new old freezer • editing my Q1 posts


2018 Week 46: The Week Ending Saturday, November 17th[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 10,900 words • Topics: Faraway, so close! • winterizing the dishwasher • asleep in the bath • nap time • among the general mess; • too much to do • preparing dinner • a pretty awful weekend • my new doctor • the Facets complete video catalog • typos in Moderan, a reply from NYRB • three juicers • a difficult night, a beautiful morning • Akhnaten continued, and other Glass works • the “smash cut” in Akhnaten • the real Akhnaten • planning for expenses • old house news • old people news • Celexa • so, LabVIEW, my old nemesis, we meet again • home again • returning to Rivendell: “The Council of Elrond,” continued • about last night • LabVIEW control references • craft fair confusion


2018 Week 47: The Week Ending Saturday, November 24th[PDF] Word Cloud


2018 Week 48: The Week Ending Saturday, December 1st[PDF] Word Cloud


2018 Week 49: The Week Ending Saturday, December 8th[PDF] Word Cloud


2018 Week 50: The Week Ending Saturday, December 15th[PDF] Word Cloud


2018 Week 51: The Week Ending Saturday, December 22nd[PDF] Word Cloud


2018 Week 52: The Week Ending Saturday, December 29th[PDF] Word Cloud


2018 Week 53: Sunday, December 30th and Monday, December 31st[PDF] Word Cloud


2018: My Year of Writing Maximally

In 2018, I took on the discipline of attempting to write every day, and upload a blog post to thebooksthatwroteme.blogspot.com every week.

The result of this experiment was a lot of text. The week 4 post alone, the longest single post, comprises about 19,500 words. The 2018 posts add up to about 465,000 words.

How many pages is that? It depends a lot on the formatting, but as an experiment, I used pandoc to turn all the Markdown files into a single .odt file using the default template. OpenOffice took a long time to paginate this, and then claimed that it would fill almost 800 printed pages.

By the time you read this, the original blog may very well be defunct, as I have long planned to remove my old content from Google’s Blogger site. In 2022 I began lightly editing these blog posts, writing summaries for the index page, and putting them on my personal site. As I write this in late February 2022, I’ve only finished 3 of the 53 weekly posts, but I hope to finish them all over the next couple of months.

I didn’t always succeed in writing every single day — with seven kids and a challenging job, my life was often, to use a software engineering term, “interrupt-driven,” and I just couldn’t make it happen. But I wrote on most days.

I chose not to edit for length at all as I was writing. Later, editing the text back in 2018 and again now, I fixed typos, cleaned up a few sentences, inserted headings, and made references to books, movies, and TV shows more consistent, but I didn’t delete anything in the interest of brevity.

This is all by way of an explanation and warning to the reader; I don’t expect you to find my digressions interesting, as in 2018 I wasn’t really writing for you. I’ve written plenty more work which I have revised and polished. But of course, now that you’re here, please feel free to read these blog posts any way you’d like. You are welcome to read each week’s post, or you can skim, or search the pages.

If you found this wordy, deliberately un-fancy backwater of the Internet via a search engine, congratulations for looking past the page-one search results. Even though I didn’t write it to be of interest to other people initially, I do hope you can find something of interest now.

Why?

Why did I do this? I wanted to find out just how much text I could produce, as a way of building confidence in my writing ability. Consider it a kind of self-imposed year-long NaNoWriMo, except for a personal journal instead of a novel. To do this properly, I needed to silence my internal editor, who otherwise would have been constantly reminding me not to bore the reader.

I also hoped to come up with raw material that I could potentially mine later, to rework into reviews or essays; I’ve often found this kind of freewriting or journaling to be useful for that, and many of my longer essays and reviews started out this way.

I should mention also that 2018 was a year of many, many stressors: my family had just moved, and we were paying two mortgages and trying to fix up and sell our old house. This led to financial hardship, as we had to pile on debt in order to keep up with both mortgages and repairs on both properties. We had recently had a baby, with special needs, and in 2018 we had another baby. I was working a challenging full-time job. Writing, about our mundane day-to-day troubles as well as topics that allowed me to stop thinking for a while about our mundane day-to-day troubles, such as books and films, helped me to keep my sanity and feel more settled during this difficult time.

About What?

Much of this text is not of general interest. It dives obsessively into topics that most people will not find interesting. It is very long and rambling. Editing it is a slog. Even though I wrote all of it, I am not finding it fun to read all of it, although I am finding bits and pieces that I think are pretty good.

I debated whether to republish all of it here, but decided to go ahead, because for better or worse, it serves as a record of a year in my life — an obsessively detailed one — and a snapshot of what I was thinking, and perhaps of more interest, how I was thinking.

I have no doubt that I was inspired in part by Knausgaard’s massive, multi-volume novel My Struggle, although this writing project was mostly about the present, not an autobiographical novel.

How?

“That’s not writing, that’s typing.”
Truman Capote, on Jack Kerouac’s writing process

I learned to touch-type on an IBM Selectric typewriter way back in the early 1980s, in a high school class. I felt out-of-place in that class, but it was probably the single most useful class I took in high school. Before I took that class, I could hunt-and-peck quickly with two fingers. After that class, I could easily exceed 120 words a minute.

I’ve slowed down since then. I’ve struggled with carpal tunnel syndrome and tendonitis over the years. But even at a fraction of that speed, that’s how I was able to bang out hundreds or thousands of words even in the small scraps of time I was able to claim for writing by neglecting household chores, ignoring my family, and staying up much too late.

Editing

I’m trying to do a quick, but thorough, editing job, so I can call my editing , and put more time into other writing. As I write this paragraph it is April 10th, 2022; I started editing the 2018 posts in mid-February, and I have finished editing 29 of the 53 weekly posts. I expect to have this editing pass completed by the end of June. As I edit, I am doing light to moderate polishing, not just cleaning up typos and inconsistencies in formatting — although there are plenty of those to clean up — but also clarifying points and adding a few details whenever it seems to me that it is valuable and relatively quick and easy to do so. I’m cutting almost nothing — these blog are akin to journals, not monographs or essays.

Why Not a Book?

I think it would be a fun piece of memorabilia to have a fat hardcover printed, containing all my 2018 posts. Maybe one day I’ll get it all formatted for printing, and have a few copies printed and bound, using a print-on-demand service. But who would read it that way? And who would pay money for a copy? Especially since you can’t click on the hyperlinks, and you can’t search it?

No, at least for the forseeable future, since I spent a year writing maximally for a blog, free of of the printed world’s concerns about page counts and page breaks and widows and orphans and tables of contents and indices and footnotes and how to represent hyperlinks in print, my annus maximus will stay online. I got what I wanted out of it. It made me a more confident writer. You can make of it what you choose.

Paul R. Potts
Pittsfield Township, Michigan
Friday, February 18th, Saturday, February 19th, and Sunday, April 10th, 2022

Creative Commons Licence
This work by Paul R. Potts is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.