31 December 2012

Five Red Herrings IV

1.  Scientists find cure for writer's block

Well, not really.  But my advice to anyone struggling for an idea: go to this collection of photographs captured by the Google Street View cameras.  Pick one at random, and write an explanation of what you are seeing, and what happened next.  Extra credit: start with one photo and finish with another.

2.  Word needed

There are wonderful terms for certain quirky errors of speech: spoonerisms, maleprops, mondegreens.  I suggest we need one for the weirdities that autocorrect and spellchecks occasionally throw our way.  Maybe: malcorrects?  For instance, I had a tough police chief unholster his gun.  Microsoft word suggested that he might upholster his gun instead.  Gave me a whole new insight into the guy.

3.  Rube Goldberg meets John Dillinger

If you don't read Bill Crider's Pop Culture Magazine website (and why not?) you probably missed this feature from Cracked Magazine: The Six Most Needlessly Overcomplicated Crimes Ever Planned.  Reminds me of a dream I had once about breaking a man out of prison by filling a fast food restaurant with Jell-o.  No, I have no idea how that was supposed to work.

4.  Her Little Corner

And while I am plugging websites I hope you are all reading Sandra Seamans' My Little Corner.  Not only intelligent commentary on the mystery field, but a great source of marketing information.

5. A glorious opportunity

Are you a member of the Short Mystery Fiction Society?  Free to join.  All you have to do is subscribe to the list.  Join by the end of the year (that is, TODAY) and you can vote on the Derringer Award nominees in a few months.  Think of the power!  The glory!  The chance to read some really good stories.  Cheers.


Fran Rizer said...

Rob, it's always interesting to see where you send us. The Google street photos stimulate thoughts of new stories as well as bringing back memories of old tales--specifically, Alfred Hitchcock's BIRDS.
That tiger is a marketing device? I'd like to have one for home security.
May all SSers have a safe and happy day today, tonight, tomorrow and throughout 2013.

Janice said...

Thanks for the link to My Little Corner which looks most useful
Happy New year!

Louis A. Willis said...

Great post. I try to read Bill Crider's Pop Culture Magazine but I missed feature about what I'd call the most stupid crimes and criminals of the year.

Looked at street pictures and I know there most be an essay in one or two of them.

Eve Fisher said...

Great sites - and great photos.
Happy New Year's every one! Stay safe, and stay off the roads...