2 - Heathcliff and other monsters

D. Paul Harrison, 03 August 2021


I’m bringing it back! Will start sharing socially at 5, I think, probably just on linkedin and twitter. It’s hard not to feel like being off Facebook is me isolating myself, but I think it’s generally good. I probably should just go ahead and disable my account, and leave Messenger, but that may be a step too far. Last time I did it, I regretted it, and brought it back.

Here we are again in the deep pandemic, and it sucks, and will likely get worse before it gets worse. I am painstakingly avoiding, even as vaccinated, because I really, really don’t want to get sick. This is generally true - thinking back to standing at an office around large amounts of other people every day seems insane now - I haven’t had a cold or anything this entire time, and it’s been great.

Otherwise, I am still frustrated with my career, and only I can make changes in it. The portfolio idea I’ve mentioned before is coming together, I’m essentially going to make comps and then try to program what I want.

What I’m writing

Voices (1000+ words)

Beta readers liked the rewrite on this one, so just have to write an ending now, then editing. I’m planning on having this done by the end of this week, get some basic feedback, and submit it to be rejected.

Other sci-fi

A vague title for a vague concept. I want, for a portfolio/agent submission packet, to have two short stories and a novella, so I am breaking out some of my ideas.

Employment (half-hour script)

I am going to take another look at this, though maybe it is going to wait for a rewrite until the results of the contest it’s in comes back in October.-

What I’m reading

Rosewater by Tade Thompson

Finished this up early this week, and I was impressed with it. It feels like a post-post-apocalyptic story, in a lot of ways. The setting is very original, and not American-centric (hooray!). The mysteries in this, the first book of a trilogy, had enough payoff to feel satisfying while setting up future things.

This is the second or third book in a row I’ve read that has an actively unlikeable protagonist, and as I’ve mentioned before, this is harder to write. Kaaro, the lead character, is apathetic to the circumstances of the central mystery, and is burnt out past his original involvement in events. Only the events of the book get him to do anything proactively, and even then, it’s mainly reactionary.

It’s easy to say the protagonist is always reactive, and the antagonists are proactive, but when the plot is as vast and existential as it is here, the lines between reactive and proactive become blurred.

Anyway, I liked it.

What I’m playing

Sea of Thieves

Still fun! The daily and holiday-based challenges have been fun and cool to do, and just the core gameplay is just so dang pleasant, I won’t stay away for long.


I decided at some point to 100% all the content in this. Skipping optional collectibles, and just seeing every possible level. I am… close. It’s been a while since I’ve played a fail-fast-fail-often game like this, besides Spelunky 2. Spelunky feels like a different genre, in some ways, but it’s really not. The best part about games like this is that every single screen you are attempting to clear is its own game, with its own rules, that may be similar to previous rules, but in a different way. As you fail often, you become an expert at a specific screen, and then when you finally clear it, it’s a massive sense of accomplishment.

The soundtrack, of course, rules.


Welcome back to the party, I am gonna think of titles for all of these now like a fool. This is the challenge I have given myself.