First Cup of Coffee – April 1, 2022

Good morning everyone this is Jeffe Kennedy author of fantasy romance and romantic fantasy I’m here with my first cup of coffee. Today is say it with me Friday wooo. It’s also April first April fools stay here in the Us. Um. So far I have not seen any fooling I haven’t looked at much I looked at Instagram but I I think I probably say this every year am not a fan of April fools day I’m not a fan of pranks in general of trying to trick people. Um, just not my thing I know some families are much more into it. But for me, it’s um I think there’s a level of cruelty in pranks that is um, just not part of who I am.

It’s interesting because I w rid coffee yesterday and had a long conversation with Jim Sorensen and we always have interesting conversations. We were talking about how SFWA’s new membership requirements are. Based on affidavit. It’s based on the honor system which some people object to somebody There’s always somebody objecting to something but part of our reasoning on this is that if somebody wanted to game the system. If they wanted to cheat their way into membership. It’s not that difficult to falsify documentation in this day and age so and interestingly Jim commented that if there were rules that he might be. Tempted to cheat them just because he would feel like he was being clever in circumventing the rules. But if it’s on our system then he feels like he has to abide by it because it’s like oh well, if you expect me to be honorable then I guess I have to. Interesting psychology huh. So um I I wonder if there’s not something connected to that with like whether or not you like to play pranks on people I think some of it’s the getting away. It’s the feeling like you’re clever and that you’ve managed to trick somebody for me. It. Very rarely has to do with actual good humor and the stuff that is actual good humor. We don’t have to have a special day for it right? I did contemplate doing some sort of. April fools podcast today. In fact, I very nearly when I start up Zencastr here I label all of my episodes by date. So I had the you know saw yesterday’s March thirty first twenty twenty two and I was very very tempted to label Today’s March Thirty second 2022 but then my ah my inner data nerd rebelled because it would be incorrect.

The other conversation that Jim and I had was about answering questions on Panels and at conferences. Um, and I don’t remember how we got on that topic but we were talking about. When people ask how there are certain questions that come up almost every time in interviews or when you’re on a panel or when you’re doing a q and a and that sort of thing I’m going to pause because I know that i’s something I plan to talk about today if I made a note which I thought I did. And not finding it a well I’ll go I’ll keep on this one and then I might have to look if I still have time I know something kind of important I think I promised someone I would talk about it today if I forget and I brought and you were the one I promised. Ah, remind me and I’ll talk about it. Well maybe not Monday we have to talk about that too. Anyway. So we were talking about answering questions and like there are certain questions that come up over and over again and that are difficult to answer and I was using this as an example that one of them is. Well I so what I was explaining is that one way that I handle that that I’ve come to handle this over time is that I try to answer the content of the question. The what I think the person is really wanting to know but they’ve kind of gone for this very standard. Um. Almost empty question and so the example I was using is the where do you get your ideas people ask where do you get your ideas a whole lot and that I think people aren’t really, they aren’t asking where do you get your ideas that they want to know something else. Basically they want to know. How do they get good ideas and become successful writing them and so I was in the midst of this is sort of a meta explanation I was in the midst of explaining this to Jim when he cut in and said being clever. And said, um, well that Harlan Ellison always said Schenectady New York that he sends off a self-address stamped envelope and they send him back ideas and and I said well that but that’s an asshole answer and that Harlan Ellison it should be pointed out. Was an asshole and Jim said yes, but it’s amusing to the audience and that’s what matters so we got into this big debate about it because I was like I can understand why he thinks performing for the audience and being amusing is like your job when you’re on that kind of thing.

But he’s much more in this niche profession of like you know he works on like transformers in Ji Joe so he goes mainly to fan conventions it and he said well do you feel like you have this. Onus or this responsibility to answer people’s questions sincerely and authentically and I said yes, um, but I guess that’s who I am I mean that’s like I’m always trying to give sincere and authentic answers answers for better or worse and i. I said you know I feel like um sure you get a laugh out of saying something like I send off to Schenectady New York for my ideas and you know ha ha ha it’s it’s the equivalent of like an April fools joke. It’s like let me let me make fun of you for and asking this question. Instead of honoring what you are really wanting to know. Um, but this is this is where we fall out and you know and I could see both sides of it. Um I think I’m there to pass long information Jim thinks he’s there to entertain people. Um, so I think the best answer that I’ve ever heard to this one is something that John Scalzi has talked about when I saw him here in Santa Fe because somebody asked where you get your ideas. And he said that he thinks that a better way to address. It is to think in terms of that. Really the question is how do you know? an idea is a good one and and he talked about his method for this that if he gets an idea he sits on it. He doesn’t write it down. He just molds it over. If he still has it the next morning he gives a little bit more thought if he still has it in a week gives it a little more thought and he said and if the idea persists for like six months then it’s a worthwhile idea and he actually invests in it and I find that a really useful both approach. And way of answering that question in an am. Um, authentic and useful way. Um, and and Jim kind of disagreed. But or maybe he didn’t disagree but um. He still thought that it was better to give a funny answer.

Or if not better, certainly easier. Um, and I mentioned that this had backfired on me because when I did that interview with Julia Quinn I don’t know if that like went up and got recorded or or what. Was an interesting interview but 1 of the people in the online chat asked where she got her ideas and and I sort of translated that into this. Maybe it’s you know, saying that was the question and but that maybe it was more useful to think of it in these terms of How do you know? It’s a good idea and Julia Quinn completely bamboozled me and she said oh no, she said I’m not one of these writers who has tons of ideas she says I’m the one who’s always sitting there going. What can I write about this time. So so then she actually talked about. what she does to get ideas so that’s what I get for assuming and and maybe that part of the take home messages. You know we’re all different. You know the whole find out what your process is and own it and I’m still looking around for like where I wrote down. But maybe I just didn’t write it down. Whatever it was I was thinking of talking about yesterday. Alas, maybe it will return to my brain eventually. So um, yeah yesterday I did not get my 2000 words. In fact, ah, barely eked out I don’t think Cphon got a thousand you guys. Ah some of it was going to ride her coffee I think I got eight eighty five so I’m actually going to try for 3000 today if I do 3021 ah, have 10000 for the week. So I and then I’ll have the weekend to recupering so we shall see what happens? Um, yeah, we shall see.

Yeah, I’m not quite sure why I crashed yesterday I actually was feeling kind of fuzzy I don’t know if it was being off schedule or being fuzzy or what sometimes we don’t know next week is going to be a little different I am um. Going up to Colorado to spend a little bit of time with my husband’s siblings so we are driving up on Sunday and staying there Sunday and Monday nights so I made you a podcast on Monday and Tuesday morning I don’t know I want to try to keep getting my 2000 words and we don’t have to get up and leave early on Tuesday so I’m hoping that I might be able to get words before we hit the rod and drive back but that’ll take priority over podcasting so we’ll just see see how I feel tra la tra lay. And then I am home for a couple of nights and then Thursday afternoon I drive down to beautiful protellus new mexico home of Deronda Jones incidentally I’m going to be at Eastern New Mexico University’s Jack Williamson lectureship talking to students and being part of panels Jack Williamson is a very famous ah old timey science fiction writer. What’s interesting about him is like I never read him and don’t know him don’t know his work really. But apparently he coined. Whole bunch of commonly used science fiction words today. How’s that for a cool legacy Melinda Snodgrass told me that and now I have to find that list of words. Okay, you guys I did the thing where I failed to properly unpause. So now I have to. I’m not sure if I’m repeating words coined by Jack Williamson this is the point this thing I’m trying to get at ah terraforming these are not all in 1 place but um, also genetic engineering ion drive. It turns out that he um got his bachelor’s degree and master of arts from Eastern New Mexico university and Portales so that’s why they did the lectureship for him and I was trying to find I wish they did have them all in 1 place. But. They don’t so anyway I think that’s really cool to have that kind of legacy that um there are all these words that are attributed to you I know um I have a friend who writes fantasy who was credited with coining hydromancy.

Using water magic and she was so pleased to be credited with that. So anyway, I won’t keep um, looking for these. Oh here’s another oh psionics. He’s credited with them coming up with the word psionics psi. Um, but I already mentioned genetic engineering. So anyway, that’s really cool should be a fun lectureship. So. I should be able to do a podcast on Thursday but I don’t know if I will on Friday again I’ll have to prioritize getting those words I’m so be a disrupted week. We will see how I do I’m hoping that going for a lower word count will help me. Actually get those words and then we’ll go from there I may have to rethink my schedule. So um, only other news is that yesterday the FIERCE HEARTS anthology came out that was incredibly well received. I will borrow a post from Instagram put it on the photos showing that was number 1 in all the subcategories. Thank you everyone for supporting this anthology to benefit Ukraine that’s just really an incredible amazing thing. Um. I do think it’s funny that like my name is first. Ah, it’s like I don’t know if I’m that high profile you guys but hope hope I could bring you readers I mentioned yesterday that the book contains a sneak peek. The. Prologue in first 2 chapters of the storm princess and the Raven King the book I’m currently attempting to write I’m actually doing okay, um, where am I don’t do that Jeffe but there I like hit the x instead of. Maximize not I mean to duta done to du I’ve got 36000 words so not slouching. Um and that’s kind of fun to write. So um, on that note I think I will go get to writing. I hope that you all have a fabulous weekend I will be patchy here maybe next week but we shall um, it’ll be what it is right? I don’t know how many of you look for me at like a particular time regularly or if you just wait to see it pop up.

Probably a mix of wells anyway, um you guys have good time and I will talk to you all sometime next week you all take care bye bye.

First Cup of Coffee – November 24, 2019

Also our topic at the SFF Seven this week is “With Gratitude: Shout Out to someone who makes you a better author (peer, editor, reviewer, SO, pet, etc.).”

Mine is weird, I know. Come on over to find out more.