No Brainer

For eleven hours a day, six days a week, over the course of three years Gerris mastered the Scylla Console. He knew every strength and flaw of this elite piece of technology. He knew the optimal temperature of the processor was 72.3 degrees Fahrenheit. He knew that in most of the Scylla Console’s constructed, the third memory module would short out if there was an electrical feedback over 14 milliamps. Most importantly and the easiest thing to learn about the Console, megacorporations security feared it.
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Don’t Play With Yourself on Valentine’s Day

I’ve written about St. Valentine’s Day a lot in my life. Something about this day sticks in my craw. I’m a romantic but like New Year’s Eve, every Valentine’s Day I’ve tried to make special usually fell flat. The expectations of certain events are difficult to meet and exceed. I really do think of myself as romantic, but I’m also very closed and cautious. Romantic gestures can also turn into really cheeseball moves if the person on the receiving end isn’t on the same level.

Normally, this time of year, I pimp out a piece I wrote a long time ago called Valloween (read my anti-Valentine’s Day rant).

This year instead of just pushing cynicism, I’m doing something different and fighting the banality I hate about Valentine’s Day. Think outside the box regarding what you do with your loved one on the 14th. What I’m going to suggest is play a game. The following are games perfect for two people to learn and play together. Some are quick, some are strategic, some are luck based, and some will end in flipped tables and angry words, but this is Valentine’s Day, that was bound to happen to someone anyway. Sorry, I just can’t keep my cynicism at bay.

Instead of Seven Deadly Sins, this year, you get Seven Fun Games For Two People. See? I’m capable of change!

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The Neuroscience of Creativity

I still believe that sitting down and reading a book is the best way to really learn something. – Eric Schmidt

Recently, I wrote about the role of noise in creativity and how to use the sense of smell to encourage creative problem solving.  I even wrote a small post on conflict spurring creativity.  Yes, there is a trend. I’ve been pondering creativity for a long while.

Baroness Susan Greenfield gave a speech at an event called Mind and Its Potential where she discussed the brain and its role in creativity.  It isn’t as simple as you might think.

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Why Writing Your Novel at Starbucks Isn’t a Bad Idea


Hear the hiss of steam coming from the nozzle of the espresso machine? The murmuring sounds of people in conversations about their upcoming vacations, their late night escapades, and their fears about their careers fill in the gaps between the tinny sounds of the cash drawer opening and closing and the occasional electronic noises emitting from nearby phones, laptops, and tablets. Welcome to the coffee shop – filled with so many different noises writing a novel, planning a project, or doing any sort of creative work must be incredibly difficult. Yet, look around and you’ll see people tap-tap-tapping away at keyboards writing the next great bit of fan fiction.

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Does Smell Hold the Secret to Creative Success?

The idea of ‘sleeping on a problem’ is well known and accepted as a perfectly acceptable way of dealing with a mental block.  A new study performed by a team led by Simone Ritter of the Radboud University Behavioral Science Institute in the Netherlands successfully linked smell with the success of ‘sleeping on it’.

Participants in the study were asked to watch a video on volunteerism before being asked for ideas on how to motivate people to volunteer more of their time. The participants were to sleep on the problem and provide ideas in the morning. Two-thirds of the participants watched the video and told the problem while exposed to a vanilla-orange scent.

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Bride of Sharron County

Originally Published in Ariadne’s Thread.

She sat at the end of the bar night after night. The only person she would speak to was Jim, the bartender. And even then it was just to place her order. There were rumors floating around about her. Supposedly she was left at the altar and never recovered. Some of the patrons of the Gorgon’s Den even said she would put on her wedding dress and walk around the county, looking for her true love, the man who abandoned her on that fateful day.

Oh, there were other more dismal rumors, like the one about her killing her fiancée the night before and putting on the charade at the church to seal her alibi. But that didn’t fit. There would be no reason for her to hang around if she was a killer who got away with it. The truth will probably never be known. Night after night, though, she would come into the bar, sit at the end, nurse a cocktail for an hour and then leave. For over two years she had done this, which only caused more weird rumors to float about. Continue reading “Bride of Sharron County”