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Wednesday, August 29, 2012

My favorite things this week

And now for a completely different blog post, my favorite things this week:

1. This video of twin 11-month-olds dancing to a guitar is one of the best things I've ever seen.  And I'm not one of those people who thinks that absolutely everything babies do is cute.  Watch this unless you're afraid to smile: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=to7uIG8KYhg&feature=share

2. Flight of the Conchords bring it once again, in a song with lyrics supplied by 5-year-olds.  Genius: http://mashable.com/2012/08/26/conchords-cure-kids/ .

3.  Lately I've realized that I have an inexplicable fondness for squirrels, so this story made me almost faint from the cuteness: http://www.examiner.com/article/animals-and-their-human-friends-the-soldier-and-the-squirrel  

4. Below wild squirrel is one of the primary sources of my obsession.  She comes to hang out with me whenever I'm in the area.  Eeeek!

video

Friday, August 24, 2012

On whether all authors need to write short stories


So, the first draft of my second novel is done (!!!), two brillitantissimus friends are reading/editing for me (thank youuuu Dana and Jill!), and now I have to figure out what to do next [*she trembles*].  Methinks I should try to conquer the world of traditional publishing [*she takes deep breath, downs her whiskey*].  As I previously blogged, the odds getting a novel published are only slightly better than the odds of me becoming a natural blonde.  But whatever. 

One thing evvvverybody says it’s important to mention in a query letter is where you’ve been published.  And apparently, that means “traditionally” published.  I gather that agents will find my history in self-publishing as impressive as a cardboard house.

Hmmm.  So.  Now I’m thinking I need learn how to write a kickass short story and then get it published somewhere, STAT.  Which I’m thinking might have slightly better odds than novel publishing or natural blonding.  I found this amazing site that lists all kinds of short story contests and grants for authors: http://www.pw.org/grants?sort=asc&order=Deadline&apage=*&perpage=*

But I’d love any additional suggestions anyone has about where to publish a story.  Alternatively, I’m open to suggestions re: who to bribe to just get my arse published already, because this publishing world is a monster.  And not a cute cartoony monster.  

Ok, mwwwah, happy weekend, you are cute.


Thursday, August 2, 2012

In Which I Analyze The Grammar of Eminem

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qhsA5t7RxAo
Vlog above, in which I comment on the grammar of four rappers in Eminem’s “No One’s Iller Than Me.”  I have a feeling Eminem is really smart, but he likes to hide that fact, like a teenage cheerleader trying to seem dumb to seem cool.

See below for written version, in case videos burn your eyes!

Twitter: http://twitter.com/ShadowSwanShadow Swans website: www.shadowswans.comBuy Shadow Swans for 99 cents and make me rich: http://www.amazon.com/Shadow-Swans-ebook/dp/B0056C414I

In which I analyze the Grammar of Eminem


Below, I grade and edit the grammar of four rappers in Eminem’s “No One’s Iller Than Me.” (Vlog link above)  I have a feeling Eminem is really smart, but he likes to hide that fact, like a teenaged cheerleader trying to seem dumb to seem cool.  My grades:

Bizarre – A-
Fuzz – A-
Swift – D-
Eminem – F

Eminem
"No One's Iller Than Me"
(feat. Swift, Bizarre & Fuzz)

No one's iller than me
I am
[Eminem- you’d say “No one’s iller than I am,” so if you take off the “am,” you still have to say “No one’s iller than I.”  Maybe you could add “damn” after “313,” to preserve the rhyme?  But now that I think about it, “damn” is such weak profanity.  You’re such a wordsmith, I’m sure you can come up with something much stronger and more appropriate.]
No one, no one is iller than me
I am
No one is iller than me
I am
It's Mr. Swifty from the 313
(damn?)...

[Swift]
I make rappers wanna turn into singers
I keep hoes lickin' they
their fingers
[Swift – WHY do rappers insist on using personal pronouns as possessive pronouns?  Hoes lick THEIR fingers, not THEY fingers.]
Bring this competition and face this meanin'
 
Got your whole crew doing subpeonas
Hell nah you ain't seen a crew genius
Murder whoever's between us, pack your heaters
Keep it close, you can't beat us
While your whole crew treat
s us like G's, [Why must you conjugate a plural noun with a singular verb? The crew TREATS you like G’s.]
you best believe this
I done made quadrapalegics outta these non-rappin rejects
[“done made”?  Now you just sound like you’re from Deliverance country]
While the whole world ejects your tape, it
’s ain't no secret
That your shit sounds fake, you can't stop it my mind state
Makes it too late for cops in tryin' to stop the crime rate
I'm like Two-Face, I'm painful to rappers then you can tell
From these shells, how I gotta bend 'em like route canals
I erase all trails, somethin' farther from gettin' bail
Makes you wanna kill an emcee yourself, you might as well
Be within a 25 to life sentence, on linkin' trials
Horrified, and keep on frontin', repentin' and lose they bowels
[Lose THEIR bowels, Swift!  They lose THEIR bowels!]
Everything is foul when Swift's around, vacate now
Niggas dumb enough to try to front and escape, how?
I'm gonna take this 'gnac and drink it straight wild
[Swift – I do love your use of “‘gnac” here.  Brillz]
Niggas steady fallin' in my face like milk crates, BLAAAOW!

[Bizarre]
Me and Eminem and Mike
Drivin' down Van Dyke
Get my dick sucked late at night by a fuckin' transvestite
Still on probation for stranglin' my boy Jason
Should be takin' my medication, it's 9 to 10 I'm facin'
Last week this old man I had to blast
Cuz he tried to help me out when my car was out of gas
Ripped this old lady, hung her neck by a hook
Didn't realize it was my grandmother 'til I checked her pocketbook
Fuckin' with the white boys got me back on crack
Better explain where the hell your TVs and VCRs is at
I done lost 100 pounds, I ain't
haven’t been eatin' like I should
This wounded dog in the street is sure lookin' good!
Rob this little boy in his fuckin' paper route
 
Throwin' bottles at day care centers and yell "EVERYBODY GET OUT"!
My girl beat my ass and shot me in the back with a 2-piece
Cuz she found out I was havin' an affair with her 10-year old niece
[Eminem – Bizarre has better grammar than you do]

[Eminem]
Nobody better test me, cuz I don't wanna get messy
Especially when I step inside this bitch, dick freshly
[I’m not sure what “dick freshly” means, so I’ll let this one slide]
New Lugz, give the crew hugs, guzzle two mugs
Before I do drugs that make me throw up like flu bugs
True thugs, rugged unshaven messy scrubs
Whippin' 40-bottles like the fuckin' Pepsi clubs
Down a fifth, crack open a six
I'm on my seventh 8-ball, now I gotta take a piss
I'm hollerin' at these hoes that got
have boyfriends
[Eminem – it should be “hoes that have boyfriends” or “hoes that have got boyfriends”]
Who gives a fuck who they was
were
[Really, Eminem?  I think you know it should be “who they were.”]
I'm always takin' someone else's girl like Cool J does
They probably don't be
aren’t packin' anyways, do are they Fuzz?
[ok, now I think you’re just trying to sound cool by sounding stupid, like a 13-year-old cheerleader might do.  That’s just pathetic.  Did you REALLY think it should be “They don’t be packin’”?  Or did you just want to sound as stupid as possible?  I think the latter.  Shame on you, Eminem.]
We walked up, stomped they
their asses and blew they their buzz
Mics get sandblasted
Stab your abdomen with a hand
-crafted [you forgot the hyphen there.  NBD.] pocketknife and spill your antacid
Sprayed your motherfuckin' crib up when I ran past it
Fuckin' felon, headed to hell in a handbasket
Talkin' shit will get you, your girl and your man blasted
Kidnapped and slapped in a van wrapped in Saran plastic
Get your damn ass kicked, by these fantastic
Furious four motherfuckers
Flashin' in front of your face without the Grand Masters

[Fuzz]
I run shit like an ass with legs
Massive lead to leave your cabbage red
Similar to your ass in a casket dead
Drastic spread of acid heads
Come to abort you like a bastard egg
That trash you said got you standin' on plastic legs
Ask the feds from past the edge
Rockin' the most classic threads
Flashin' bread, roll down the window
Bitch you
’ve got some fantastic legs, you can get 'til that ass get red
You can get 'til that ass get red
Bizarre you get him and him, Swift you get him and him
I'll get him and him, leave the other two for my nigga Eminem
Never writer's block, I block writers
My block's tighter, ante up and get your top fighters
Got fired for jumpin' the counter with a mop stick
Some bitch ran up screamin' GET THE COPS QUICK!
And got drop kicked, now she
’s screamin' "Stop it..."
Got clips to stop shit, rock shit and grab this hot shit
Wherever you shop bitch, Fuzz Scooter '97 crop pick
Sick a-ya'll niggaz lookin' at me like I got tits
I shoot a rocket through your optic
You niggaz still don't know the top pick?
I
’ve got bricks, lose my foot in your ass
And have you shittin' socks bitch!
We rock shit, leave your fuckin' knot split
Grab the green from Al by showin' him hot grits
(No one...)
[Eminem - overall, Fuzz has much better grammar than you as well]

[Bizzare]
It's the Mr. Fuzzy from the 313
No one, no one is iller than me
I am
It's Eminem and Swift from the 313
No one, no one is iller than me
I am
It's Fuzz and Buzz-arre from the 313



Twitter: http://twitter.com/ShadowSwan
Shadow Swans website: www.shadowswans.com
Buy Shadow Swans for 99 cents and make me rich: http://www.amazon.com/Shadow-Swans-ebook/dp/B0056C414I