My Milk Ain’t Free


Trying to be a writer is hard. 

Actually, scratch that. Trying to be a paid writer is hard. Maybe it has something to do with how hard it is to be a good writer. I guess these things are all dependent on each other.

In the real world, in which I refuse to live, I suppose one would have to pay their dues by either A) writing the stuff they want for free or B) writing the stuff they don’t want to write for money (my current day job) – possibly at the same time. That is, until they garner some kind of leverage so that people pay for their writing (say, celebrity?). Unfortunately, this supposedly wonderful free society that is the Internet makes it so easy to access free writing (free everything), that a girl can’t get paid these days.

Context. I wrote a lengthy travel piece about a mule trek I did on Molokai last summer, which I’ve been shopping around.

Actually, scratch that. I bled, sweated and birthed a lengthy travel piece over many, many weeks and I have desperately been trying to get it published somewhere (and getting less picky by the day).

That being said, I know I’m not in a position to be demanding when it comes to getting published. Lords knows I’m no Les Stroud. But I can’t let go of the idea that I should be compensated for my work, beyond the ethereal joy of having people read my stuff, of course. I’m talking about financial compensation

One magazine said it wasn’t suited to their demographic, but was very helpful. One newspaper said they already had “enough Hawaii stuff.” Another newspaper said they just weren’t buying much travel writing these days, and wished me luck in getting it placed somewhere. Others have yet to respond at all. (By the way, I’m actually quite grateful and somewhat surprised I got responses at all, so I hope this doesn’t come off too bitter.)

But that’s the rub, isn’t it? No one’s buying much travel writing these days, because no one’s buying much of anything, unless it has a little apple on it

Alas, I hope I will summon the patience and maturity to stop my grumbling and accept that I may just not be in a place right now to expect money for my work. (That sounds so sad when I phrase it like that.) I will just suck it up and keep on trucking and… uh, keep my chin up and so forth…

I was reading Diablo Cody’s life story on her Wikipedia page the other day. It’s not that she’s the best writer, or a role model of mine in any sense, but her story’s a good example of what I think it takes to make a name for yourself as a writer. (The kind of name that makes money.) She started out as a blogger, and later wrote bona fide articles, a book and eventually a screenplay that got her a column in Entertainment Weekly. Blogging, eh? I can do that for a while, I guess. Although I may need a gimmick of some kind…

I guess my other option is to keep sending my writing around until someone says, “yes, your work is worth money.” I may cry if that day ever comes.

Even so, my main concern persists… who’s going to buy the cow when they’re getting the milk for free?

The Other Boobs of Summer


Allow me to preface this with the fact that I do, indeed, have a job and a life. Now…

I’m pretty excited about all the TV I plan to watch this summer. And it’s not because there are particularly awesome shows airing during the summer months, but because I plan on watching most of these online while I’m working from home. By the way, for all the naysayers out there: television shows can, and often are, very good quality programming on par with a lot of movies out there. And it’s not a waste of time, as long as I ALSO go outside for fresh air ‘n stuff.

Cake shows on TLC and the Food Network

Chef Duff, of Ace of Cakes

Chef Duff, of Ace of Cakes

One of my greatest joys in life is watching people make truly creative, amazing cakes. Cake Boss on TLC is like Everybody Loves Raymond but set in a bakery and Raymond is a kick-ass pastry chef without a super annoying wife. And, of course, Ace of Cakes on the Food Network is the icing on, well, the cake of cake shows. It’s about a group of friends (give or take a few) who run Charm City Cakes in Boston. They’re much funnier than Cake Boss and, to be fair, make much cooler cakes. Watching these shows makes me want to make “pastry chef” Plan G in my life plan. I don’t know if these are new episodes airing this summer, but who cares? It’s about CAKE!

Fulfilling my violence quota

My new favourite televised obsession is True Blood. The last time this happened to me, I ended up spending a bleary-eyed 20 hours or so watching the first two seasons of Veronica Mars all in a row. Thankfully (for my health and productivity levels) I can only watch one episode a day on Megavideo because of their stupid rules that try to push you to buy a membership. But I digress, True Blood looked like it was going to be a hillbilly (excuse the term) vampire romance. Don’t we have enough of those? (It also sounded like an extrapolation from the episode of Buffy the Vampire Slayer when Buffy can hear people’s thoughts but she can’t read the mind of her vampire boyfriend, but let’s not get into that.) Instead, it was a surprisingly witty, well-made, very engaging show. I already love most of the characters, which is a terrible sign if I’m ever going to leave my bedroom again. Season 2 premieres on June 14, so I better hurry and finish season 1.

I’m also dreadfully behind in watching Dexter and The Sopranos, which I’ve had on my Must Watch list for a very long time. I may actually trot down to the local video store to rent these. THAT’S commitment. The Sopranos is over, I know, so there’s plenty of time for that. But season 4 of Dexter begins on September 27 (that sounds like a familiar date…) so I better get a move on if I’m going to watch a whole season and a half in three months.

Oh, and I may watch Dollhouse since it’s been renewed for a second season (presumably through witchcraft) and because of my loyalty to Joss Whedon and peer pressure. By the way, why isn’t Joss Whedon on Twitter??? Srsly.

Now let’s dance!

I fell in love last summer. Summer lovin’, it happened so fast. It was filled with kicks and twirling and lots of sweating. His name was So You Think You Can Dance. Sadly, I never had feelings for its Canadian counterpart, but you can’t chose who you love, right? Well, season 5 is in full swing this summer, and I’m already hooked. Although I’m still annoyed with how close-minded they are about gender roles in dancing (thanks for the link,, I love the level of talent both the dancers and the choreographers bring to the floor. I am desperately in love with Tabitha and Napolean (see an awesome routine here), but I think I could see myself loving a new choreographer from last year named Sonya Tayeh (routine here). 

Comedy can wait for the fall

Although I’m very behind in watching It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, which is HILARIOUS, I may wait until the fall. Half-hour comedies are best saved for school days, when I need something to make me laugh in between studying and classes. So, The Office, 30 Rock and Parks and Recreation: See you in September.