Thursday, April 28, 2011

The word GUMPO, a dinosaur anecdote

This was inspired by a contest on the OLL Blog, and is posted there as well. But I thought I'd share here as well.


The thing is, you have to have a working understanding of Dinosaur and it's derivatives to really understand the language of someone like Blobby. Take the word GUMPO. For most dinosaurs, this is well outside what we would expect in the normal vocable range. However, as demonstrated in the interview, Blobby is unique. Therefore, we must venture into the vast array of dialects that this wonderfully complex and beautiful language encompasses.

In ornithomimid (the language of bird-like dinosaurs), there is the word "garah." More colloquially, it is "garop". Granted, at first, this does not sound like GUMPO, but if you understand the etymology of the word, the connection becomes clear. It means "love." Love of flying, love of life, and of art, much like "rawr," a word well known in Common Dinosaur. But what differentiates it is 'Rawr" is often "I Love you." "garah" is general love for everything. It comes from the common word "quoop." Quoop is love.

Quoop came out of Dinostock 92, the precursor to our own Woodstock. Unlike most common dinosaur words, it is difficult for sober land dinosaurs to vocalize. But throw in a little weed, and anything becomes possible. Well, Dinostock 92 faded into legend, but the word remained well loved in the stoner community. Well, some of those stoners eventually grew up, but they retained their heritage. But they could not produce the joyous Quoop while sober. So, they came up with a new version, and it spread like wildfire, as many dinosaurs were forced to grow up in the boom extinction event that took out much of the older population. Without parental support, they were on their own. The word was Rumpro. They kept the meaning the same, one of free love and joy and love for the world.

Well, years have passes, ad it's taken on many forms. North American dinosaurs turned it into GUMPO. European dinos kept on using Rumpro, but for the rest of the world, they embraced innovation, and Gumpo spread as the word for love. Love of writing, of life, of music and caffeine and good friends.


theanab, dinosaur linguist.Love.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011


A while back, I posted about actual intellectualism. Today, I want to talk about another favorite subject: psueointellectualism.

Now I'm not talking about the ignorant sort of snark that you find on the internet today, where people get together and act all smart and mean. Not in the least. That's not how I define it.

What I'm talking about is a bunch of smart people who get together and talk about random things--chaos is important (and we've been known to discuss chaos theory, though that lends itself more to being intellectual.) But while talking about these random things, we manage to sound all intellectual, even though for most of us, we only have a cursory knowledge of the subject. Truth is, I don't know how we manage it. Maybe it is just because most of us are somewhat educated and understand language and grammar. Or it might be that we talk loudly and with passion, throwing our hands in the air and drawing on imaginary chalkboards... Take your pick; I'm sure you can find a good reason for it.

Finals are upon me now, so I'm honing my intellectual brain. See ya on the flip side.

Monday, April 25, 2011


There is nothing I like more than arriving at a final to find an essay question; but especially an essay questiong that says something like:  "Why is (subject of class) important to you?" or "How does your favorite work of American poetry figure in larger worldview?"  I can say whatever I want.  I can write to my heart's content.  There's no stipulations.  No length requirements. It's wonderful.  Those open-ended questions are the best.  What's the earliest thing you remember?  Where do you come from?  Who's the one person who's most affected your life?  Open-ended questions; they prompt all the best writing.

Friday, April 22, 2011

Script Frenzy Week Three

I did it.

Took me 20 days.

That's the longest I've ever spent to win a Frenzy. My first year, 4 days. Second, 3 days. And last year, it was either 2 or 3.

But this year, life just kept happening and I didn't have the long blocks of time to sit and bash out a ton of text. Once my NaNo ran out, I was flying solo (I didn't even know how the story ended), something I didn't do last year. Last year, the whole thing was completely written out for me, just needed to be strung together. But, I like how it turned out. The script isn't finished yet, but I know how it ends. And I know how the sequel starts, and I"m pretty stoked about it.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

If I'm not around much...

... it's because finals are approaching. Three exams and two papers in the next two weeks. And a Frenzy to finish. So, truth is, I don't have time to write a post right now and no idea what to write it about.

So, back to the standby. Enjoy a bit of noir.

Int. Jack's Office

Shot fades in as Jack is talking.

She walked, no, she stalked into my office, gun still in her hand.

JESSICA is silhouetted in the doorway as she walks in.

(to Jessica)
Hey kitten. What you doing with that big of a gun.

I've been doing what needs to be done.
As all the men in this town were afraid to do it.

Sets the gun down.

Couldn't see what color her hair is beneath that hat, but I'd bet you it's red.

She walks out and he picks up the phone and dials.

That dame, she's seen it all. She's been around as long as any of us could remember, and she was the one that could get you any information you ever could want.
She was called Sylvia, but we never know if that is her real name. She had a reputation and lived up to it, if you could pay the price. Now, I didn't know if I could, but that woman had shaken me and I wanted to know why.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Pardon my hacking...

It's finals week and I'm coming down with something...heaven help me.  But at least I survived my week in the house with no books.  One more week and I'm home and it's summer (sort of) and I can start all my projects and laugh at my little sister's forays into the adult dating world!  I can do this!

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Script Frenzy Week Two

Sorry guys, spaced that I was doing this.

My script about the robot has stalled. I'm to this scene where one of my fave chars shows his extreme social awkwardness and how he copes. And honestly, I'm nervous to write it, because it's kinda crazy how he copes. With a sock puppet.

But my noir? I'm nearly to the end of where I wrote for NaNo. But the good thing is that I have the rest of it laid out. Now I just have to write the dialogue for it.

Page counts?
Calvin: 27
Red Hot Steel: 47

RHS looks like it may run shorter than 100 pages, but I'm okay with that. It's not meant to be long and drawn out. I'd rather it be a bit shorter and a whole lot sweeter. Although it does mean I may be able to add more characterization and backstory in somewhere... But I'm not to the second draft yet.

Until next week.


Thursday, April 14, 2011

Happy People

This'll post at 11:59 my time so yeah, it's a Thursday post, but you'll all read in on Friday.

In light of all the crap that has been going on in my life, I took some time to think about what I was doing wrong, what could lead to everything seemingly going downhill. I've got a lot of theories, but it's one of them I want to focus on right now.

That's gratitude.

I realized that I was acting like an ungrateful little brat. Which means that everything that happened makes a lot more sense now. So today, I want to list a few people that I am grateful for. They made Thursday a better day than I had thought it would be.

1. Ryan from my gym. He taught me how to lead climb. For free. Instead of insisting I pay like most people. And he's just a cool guy.

2. Mr. Ken Sanders himself. He took the time to talk to me about the books I bought, and it was like "Wow. This guy that I barely know did something amazing. He made me feel important." That's something that I haven't felt in a while.

3. The guy at Now and Again. He was just nice, and not rude to a random kid like some shop owners are. And his dogs are cute. I'll go back, even though he says that typewriters last a day, max. That's an interesting sign. Where are all the Utah typospherians? Or are they just decorating with typers?

I like 3. It's a good number. So I'll leave it there.

Until next week.


Wednesday, April 13, 2011

The Life Hating Continues

I wish I knew what was going on, but right now, everything just seems fucked up.

Yeah, I just used that word. Sorry M and others who don't like it.

But it fits.

Was going to whine about how I'm mad at myself for screwing things up in my life, but I don't know. Maybe I'll just rant about language. Or pseudointellectualism. Or any of the other random things that I could write about.

Or not.

Well, enjoy what I found on Matador.

Notes on the Underground

Monday, April 11, 2011

Crazy Cat Lady

It's finals week.  A family friend is out of town for two weeks.  I'm house and cat sitting and studying.  I was excited.  And wanted Cowboy to clone himself a few times to make the crazy cat lady experience a little more true to life.  Until I arrived.  There are no books.  NO BOOKS IN THE ENTIRE HOUSE!!  NO BOOKS!!!!!  I will die.  I will really truly die.  There isn't a single one.  Have you ever heard of such an insane, horrifying, panic inducing, hyperventilation causing, nightmare bringing, awful, hateful, I'm-running-out-of-adjectives-I'm-so-freaked thing?!?  I will die.  And the cat is needy and sits on my anthologies.  I hate my life.  The end.

Friday, April 8, 2011

Script Frenzy Week One

Well, we're just finishing up the first week of the Frenzy. So, I thought I'd let you all know what is going on!

Working on two scripts right now--the noir that you've seen parts of already and a story with the the following tagline:

In which a misprogrammed, fatalistic robot and a bunch of ragtag heroes embark on an epic quest to save the world.
Yeah, that one's awesome. It involves the circus. :) And even better: The whole idea came out of a bunch of Script Frenzy dares I took a couple of years back and never used.

I'm 22 for sure pages into the robot story, with a bunch to transcribe, and 18 into the noir, which is an adaptation of one of last year's NaNo novels.

Doing an adaptation is always interesting. If I've got an idea for Script Frenzy and want to start on it before April, I'll write it as prose, as a novel, and then follow the rule for adaptation. But this one came to life first as a novel--I though it might be cool to adapt, but it wasn't the one that was written for that purpose. Last year's Dieselpunk NaNo was meant to be SF this year, but it just didn't feel right. I think I'm an action writer at heart. :)

Okay, enough of my ramblings. Stay tuned for next Friday's week two update!

Wednesday, April 6, 2011


Well, as I write this, it is Tuesday night and I just realized that it was my turn to post.

So, lacking a post or even really the energy to post, I think I'll share something really cool a prof of mine posted on facebook.

How Slavery Really Ended

Check it out. And let's discuss it below.

Monday, April 4, 2011


I am totally geeking out over this one!  So the Adobe Book Store in San Francisco rearranged all their books according to the color spectrum.  For one week.  And then they put them all back.  Momentary thing aside, I cannot express how much I love this.  As the book obsessed artsy child of an interior designer you can just guess how my decorative bent showed itself:  yep, you guessed it, all the books in my parents' house are arranged by color-thanks to moi-and all my own would be too if they were not in boxes awaiting the day I have a slightly more permanent residence.  If only, if only.  As a kid my mom would catch me rearranging my books by author's FIRST name or by size or color or some other unfathomable characteristic.  I'm pretty sure I even went by main character's name once.  And here's the clincher...I DID IT INSTEAD OF PLAYING!!!!!!  I am weird, I willingly admit that.  Seriously, what eight year old kid declines her kid sister's request to build houses for their Barbie dolls out of the encyclopedia in favor or reorganizing her desk shelves?  And what eight year old has a desk?  I did.  Be weird like me and the Adobe Book Store, go play with your books.  (photos courtesy of my favorite book store, check them out!)

Friday, April 1, 2011

A Long Affair

I have a love affair with script.

Not just movies, either. With theatre and film and even TV. There's something about script that speaks to me in a way that the novel does not.

Maybe it is the fact that a script is about the language. The way people talk. Things like describing the scene and setting can be taken care of in as few words as possible if you so desire, and you don't have to worry about the he said and she said and varying your structure in regards to that. It is talk, pure and simple. When you remove the fluff that comes with trying to make your language flow and sound normal and just write like people talk, a world of possibilities opens up.

Take the following, for example.

Rachel walked in the house, slamming the screen door behind her, "I ain't never going back." She said emphatically, "Never."

Now read it as a script:

Rachel walks in, slams screen door.
RACHEL: (Emphatically) I ain't never going back. Never.

Blunt, to the point. Same words, same scene, but in my mind, there is a difference. Rachel peels off the page in the script, at least for me. No longer is she just a girl who walks in with an attitude. This time, she walks in in her cut off shorts, ponytail bobbing as she shakes her head. Maybe it is just because I see all my ideas as movies. Writing them as a script brings them back to 3-D in my head. As I adapt the prose version that sometimes precedes a script, I start to hear the music, the street sounds, the smells, everything. It comes to life in my mind the way that my novels never quite do.

I find it especially fitting that I post this on April 1. At midnight when this posts, the Frenzy starts. A  month dedicated entirely to script, to the celebration of this art form.

Let it begin.