Photo: Contrast (and Catania’s Pescheria)

Another entry for Post A Week 2012! For this week’s theme ‘Contrast’, I chose two photo’s that I had already intended to desaturate before the theme was announced, because of strong sun and interesting plays of light.

The first shot was taken during an all-day barbequeue in Catania, where I retrieved my camera from it’s hiding place specifically to capture the slats of light filtering through some overhead bamboo. My unwitting subjects are from Germany, USA and Italy, it was a great multi-cultural affair.

The second shot and others from the fish market are here

Photo: Down (Mi Dispiace, é un po tardi)

A quick post while I’m in the zone! This is a photo I chose for last weeks Post A Week 2012 theme ‘Down’.

I’ll be choosing another one for this weeks theme ‘Indulgence’ in a day or two.

Some background – this photo was taken with my point & shoot while I cycled 1500 kilometres of the Danube Cycleway, from SW Germany at the river’s source, to Budapest in Hungary (2010).
More photo’s and info on the ride

Good Reasons Not To Write

Or, How Not To Complete NaNoWriMo

NaNoWriMo happened in November as it does every year, and once again tens of thousands of WriMers wrote millions of words to achieve their individual target of 50,000 words or more. Personally, I failed abysmally and barely got started. That’s ok though, because I found there were other things I wanted to focus on, instead of churning out 50,000 amateurish words without a real goal in mind.

50,000 words is too much to practice writing. Good typing practice tho

I did think a lot about what it is to write, while otherwise occupied, and came up with an interesting analogy. I started to think of creating a novel as much like creating a patchwork quilt. A novel is a collection of moments or sequences, spun together to create a larger piece of work. Some writers create incredibly intricate and detailed work, skillfully making the smaller pieces into a whole with a clever plot or premise. Others can choose to create short exciting pieces which stand alone, or a lengthy focused story that has no plot outside its narrative.
Read More and See Photos

Stop Stealing My Business Ideas

You know when you think you’ve come up with a great idea, something completely original that has never been done before? Then you visualise putting your idea into action, how the immediate and exponential uptake will change the world as we know it and you’ll be set up for life?

Too many times I have gotten to that point, and then the next thing you know, it pops up in an advertisement or on Dragons Den, or worse still, as a living breathing internet craze…

To date, here are the ideas (that I know of) that have been ruthlessly stolen from me, and been put into action before I lifted a finger.

1. Facebook

facebook was my idea but zuckerberg stole it

I’ve always taken lots of photo’s and travelled a fair bit too. As mobile phones with camera’s became widely available around 2001-2002, I dreamed (note the operative word here) of creating a website with all my pictures on, details of my hobbies, interests, links to sites I found, and also a really cool interactive map that allowed you to see where I’d been and browse my photo’s by location. To whit, I used a free hosting and web wizard service (Blogspot) to create a couple of pages, which I decided to call ‘You looking silly on the internet‘. Genius. Upon showing my brief tinkerings (the photo’s don’t even display in the intended order) to a friend or five, they pretty much all concluded; ‘that’s cool, you’ll have to show me how to do that’. At this point I very much realised I would at no point sit down to tediously walk someone else through the basics of what I managed myself by following simple instructions, and I ALSO realised at no point would they bother to work it out themselves.  And therein lay the answer – the key was not going to be to try to teach other people to use a free web service, it was going to be in Enabling them to do it more effortlessly. And then obviously Zoldemort stole my idea, and created the eponymous Farcebook.
More: 6 other stolen ideas and a business conclusion

Have a Crafty Christmas with Vegetabaubles

Only TEN days until Christmas! At the beginning of December I spontaneously decided to go super healthy.

This means meat free, low fat and no junk food. So obviously I love greens (and whites, and oranges, etc) but now I’m taking it further by attempting to decorate my Christmas tree with veggies too.   🙂

First I made Ski’s, that help you see in the dark. The snow started melting because it’s warm inside.

See the rest of my Vegetabauble pics

Riddle Me This

Or, I should really say ‘tell me a Wrime’.

The close of Day 4 of NaNoWriMo, and my word count stands at about 30, but triple it if you count another couple of lines that I have in my head. Unfortunately that is 49,970 words short of the target, and only 0.0045% of the way to Day 4’s pro-rata amount. But I’m not worried! I have never completed a single piece of work in a remotely orderly manner, so why should writing (an art form no less!) be any different. In fact, without a grenade up my behind, I just can’t sit myself down.
Read on, McDough

On Writing, And Murakami

I read a really interesting interview with Haruki Murakami in last weekend’s edition of The Guardian. A very timely piece, possibly part of a build up to NaNoWriMo next month. I will be taking part and I think more people should have a go!

In the interview with Murakami, he talks about how he sometimes feels like he is living in a parallel world, and in the other world he never became a writer, and kept running a jazz cafe instead. He would have had quite a content life either way, especially as he is so easily pleased by cats (apparently)…
Read more on Murakami and my plans

Re-think, Re-brand, Reset

Ok, so a couple of weeks in, a few draft posts that are about 80% complete, and I have had some brainwaves.

It’s worth noting that I went out on friday night, drank a lot more than my RDA (recommended daily allowance) of a large and varied selection of soft drinks and alcohol (sometimes a large and varied selection all in one glass, #hoorayforcocktails!), unfortunately spending a small fortune in the process.

I’m actually completely against binge drinking but still find it hard to say No to a friend’s birthday celebrations, and crucially find it very hard to say No More For Me Thanks when I am in a bar with money or plastic in my wallet! Baah…
Energy levels, ideas, and rhino’s giving birth

First Post

Hi. This is a Brand New Blog!

The first thing I have done is written my ‘About’ page, so you can read what Shock And Orr will be about there.

The next thing on my To-Do List (I live and die by these things) for the blog is to explain why I chose the name ShockAndOrr, and the alias Peter Parkorr. If anyone understands the concept (or even part of it) without being told, then you are certified more bizarre and convoluted than I am, which is saying something.

I will aim to reply to all worthy comments where possible. A lot of things I will blog about are open to healthy debate and so I welcome all opinions. Comment away!

Back soon,

Peter Parkorr