Oh wow

I just realized that there’s a very big spider web on this site, so I reckon I’ll jump in, clean it off a bit with a blog post, and then frolic on off to… do whatever it is that I need to do today.

It’s been a stupid busy eight months. Since getting the job I’m currently in, I’ve been commuting at least two hours a day, ramping up for what is, so far, a pretty successful relaunch of the Cards: The Attackening! Kickstarter, and trying to have some semblance of a social life on top of all of that.

In addition to that, I’m finally back on my 1,000 words a day schedule, starting at 6:00 in the morning. A long time ago, I found out that if I don’t get my writing done before 10 in the morning, then I’m useless. Now, what with having to leave my place by 7:00 most days, that means my time is incredibly limited. But! It’s worked out so far.

“But Aaron, what have you been working on?”

Aside from the C:TA! Kickstarter, I’ve been working on the third part of my post-apocalyptic beast of a book–that, I think, is currently living on Mt St Helens because of reasons reasons–a long-form piece about the Portland con scene that is in desperate need of some editing, a longish primer on classical music, and a series of stories called “The Estimable Adventures of Dr. Chiu.” 

“But Aaron, what are you doing with all of that?”

None of your business. Have patience.

Oh, also: I’ve been learning JavaScript and Drupal. Also Selenium

So yeah. I see other people, like, twice a month, now. (Business, work, and going to the store excluded.)

Much busy. Such productivity. Wow.

So, that’s what I’ve been up to. How about you?!

An Open Letter to the Spam Bots Infesting My Blog

Dear Spam Bots,

 

Good morning. I am, of course, aware that I have not been posting as much as I should be on this site. I am, after all, paying for the domain. I should at least use it. I get it. I really do! Further, I thank you for your posts, because every time I get an e-mail reminder from WordPress that I should moderate the spam that’s been infesting my blog, it’s a reminder that I should also post to the blog.

It’s not for want of material! There’s a lot out there that I want to write about. Indeed, I have been writing. I swear! I’m about 25k words in on a primer on classical music for a friend. I’ve been working on a long-form article about conventions in Portland’s gaming scene. I’ve been working on fiction, too–trust me on that. It’s just, you know, there’s only so many hours in the day, and with a 1.5 hour commute (at the least) every day, I can’t really get time to update my blog. If I did, I’d have to give up my more in-depth writing projects, and I’m just not willing to do that.

Yes, I know, you’re basically my only audience. This may very well be your only way of saying that. Your bizarre, non-English posts might be a way of saying, “Aaron! Post! We miss reading your thoughts as we break through WordPress’s horrible spam-catching infrastructure.” If so, message received, comrades! There’s no need to continue posting on my Documentation article. Or the Christmas Letter from two years ago. Please stop. You’re filling up my inbox too much, and I hate having to cultivate that thing.

So, look. Okay. I’ll post more to this thing. I really will. Just stop. Please?

Yours,

Aaron Simon

Update!

It has been a very, very busy few weeks, which is why – for one reason – I haven’t updated this site. The other reasons range from laziness to completely forgetting that this thing exists.

One thing I’ve learned over the past two and a half months is that, if we are truly out of the recession, instead of just dangling over the edge of it, then this unemployment we’re witnessing is the new reality. It is, in other words, the new American economy. Business are both holding on to tons of cash and hiring for a lot of positions. But I get ahead of myself.

So, one of the awesome things that’s happened was that I’ve been published. Again! Twice, even! The first one is something that’s been in the works for several months. My version of the Never Sleep Guide to Nashville, which focuses on some bars you might not expect coming from me, will be out on Playboy’s iOS app at a future date. Don’t have it nailed down yet, but they paid me, so I’m guessing that means they’re going to publish it.

The second piece was “My Dog, The Dybbuk,” accepted for publication by Danse Macabre. You may know this mag as the one that’s published a couple of my other stories. “Rocks And Hot Dogs” and “Turned Away,” specifically. The editor keeps accepting the stories, so that means I’m doing something right. Now, I could use this as a platform to talk about why I think self-publishing is a bad route for many authors, and how it’s damaging to the art form as a whole, but I won’t do that. Firstly, because that’s not what this post is about. Secondly, because most people who read this probably don’t care.

So! 

Before I hit up the big news, I’d like to say that I think I found a long-lost Simon. His name is Anatoliy, he runs a really kickass shoe repair business, and it’s chilling how much we look alike. Give that dude a beard and a flat cap and we could be brothers. He slapped a new rubber sole on my Rockport walking shoes, and I’m super freaking happy about that.

And, the big news: I got a job! Yes, I beat Portland by going around Portland and in to Beaverton! Specifically, a company called CDI Corp, doing web content/QA work for Intel. My job title as listed in the offer is QA/Web Editor, but according to the rest of the team, there needs to be at least four more forward slashes in that to adequately describe the job.

It’s at a pretty solid wage, at a decent location, and bennies! More importantly, it’s a damn good way to start on the tech writing/web management path. I figure I’ll keep on learning code on the side, learn frameworks as I go along, and see where I’m at in a few years. 

Most of all, though, I’m pretty damn grateful for all the support of my family over the past few months. Undertaking a tectonic shift like moving across the country and into a new industry, you’d hopefully assume that your family would have your back, but that’s sometimes not the case. I’ve met a few people who’ve had some severe issues crop up as a result of something much less than this, and it really makes you appreciate people having your back. 

All my friends, though? They suck. Terrible people. Every single one of them. Worthless, lazy, nogoodnik, sonsabitches who routinely revel in the demise of everything that is good and decent in the world.

Which brings me to a closing piece of advice: Peanut butter is your best friend, ever. Yeah, it might get boring after a while, but that shit’ll feed you for a while. Coming off of two and a half months of unemployment diet, it’s a good feeling to go out and buy some chicken, cook it, and make it all fancy with veggies.