The Secret Sauce Of A Real Twitter Challenger

by Shelt Garner

Elon Musk really risks driving out the 1% of Twitter users. These would be the center-Left elites that all the MAGA people hate so much and yet crave the validation of.

So, I propose this — if you were to create an app like Twitter that was feature rich and cherry picked a lot of the best design elements of Usenet, a lot of those elites would use it.

If you gave the elites some way to manage their interaction with the Poors in a way that didn’t offend anyone, then, that, too would help jumpstart a new Twitter-like app.

But, lulz, no one listens to me.

Elon Musk Would Be The Next POTUS But For Where He Was Born

by Shelt Garner

Given how overnight Elon Musk has become the center of the Twitter world with his online chaos, we have to admit that he’s very Trump like. We’ve reached a similar situation as we did with Trump.

He has a huge built-in popularity base and he could easily throw his hat into the POTUS ring — and win.

But for one thing: he was born in South Africa.

And, given how weird Musk is, it’s even possible that Musk might use a few billion dollars to, through brute force, change the Constitution so he can run and hold office.

But one thing we have to to appreciate is how potentially dangerous Musk is going forward. He has the means, motive and opportunity to really fuck things up. We’ll see how all this sorts out going forward.

My Hot Take On Tinx’s ‘Cancellation’

by Shelt Garner

Let me be clear — I have no fucking idea what’s going on with Tinx. But she was ever-present on Tik-Tok for the last two years or so and her abrupt fall from grace is worth writing about again.

I will note that this would be the perfect fodder for a neo-Gawker that would cover the vibe shift we’re going through right now. We need the journalistic equivalent of Studio 54.

But, alas, no one listens to me.

Let’s talk about why she was canceled — “fat shaming” and, I think, “coming out” as Republican.

Yet, I think that’s besides the point. She was brought down for the time being more because she flew too close to the sun rather than anything else. She leveraged her Tik-Tok fame in a way that really (apparently) was found exploitive by the hivemind collective so, when the moment came, she fell hard.

But, here’s what I think of being “canceled” in general. First, most people who are canceled are center-Left people who are canceled by other center-Left people. Republicans and MAGA have no shame and will do whatever they like for an reason.

The process of being canceled, from what I can tell of Twitter and Tik-Tok goes something like this — you do something mildly controversial in the sense that it doesn’t fit the media narrative. This goes viral. Then 16 year old girls pick it up like they’re a member of the Cultural Revolution or something. Then 16 year old boys pick it up in an effort to get laid — they have no idea what they’re talking about — and, for about 24 to 48 hours, the person is question is persona non grata.

Then, gradually, everything snaps back into place and there’s another conflated example of someone being “canceled” for Traditionalists to rant about.

Remember, a lot of the examples of Republicans being “canceled” are pure bullshit because in real terms there always — always — something else going on that mitigates or changes the context of their “cancelation.”

And, by the way, Mike Pompeo is a fat fuck.

At ~70,000 Words At The Midpoint Of This First Draft Of This First Novel In A Planned 5 Novel Thriller Project

by Shelt Garner

I finally took a deep breath and collected all the scenes that make up what I’ve written so far and at the midpoint of the novel I’m at about 70,000 words. That’s not bad for the midpoint.

Looking at this critically, this is both good and bad.

It’s good because I’m going to wrap up the first draft in the sweetspot of about 80,000 – 120,000 words. It’s bad because there’s a real risk that the second draft, which will be far, far better will completely blow past that sweetspot, which is what I’ve been afraid of from the beginning.

But I don’t know.

I probably am just overthinking things. I do that all the time.

The Thing About Getting Older & Undertaking a Huge Writing Project

by Shelt Garner

As I continued to work on this 5 novel project, I also continue to realize that I have a very finite amount of time left on this earth. I’ve officially reached put up or shut up time.

I know I should be reading as much as I’m writing, but it’s really difficult. It’s difficult because I feel angst about reading when I should be writing. I need to wrap up the first book in this 5 novel project ASAP so I can start working on the next book.

I just feel a lot of angst overall.

I just feel like it’s too late. That I should just sit in my bed and stare at the ceiling and feel guilty. It’s really too late to make any meaningful change in my life because if I get what I want, I will be judged by when it happened.

You’re supposed to sell your first novel when you’re young and cute, not old a grizzled.

Every time this happens, however, I dust myself off and throw myself back into writing.

Just About 60% Done With The First Draft of The First Novel In The Planned 5 Novel Thriller Project

by Shelt Garner

Well, I know where things are ending with this first draft and I’m quite pleased. They’re ending with me finishing the first draft. Alright! It’s very much a struggle, though.

I have to just keep moving forward. I have to just keep writing.

It doesn’t help that my fingers hurt for various reasons at the moment. But that’s definitely a short-term problem. I think if I just keep moving, writing some every day, that I can wrap up this first draft a lot sooner than you might think.

Once that happens, then I’m going spend about a month writing and reading various other things. I may even spend a lot of time developing the second novel in the series. It will be a lot of fun to stay in-universe and yet write about something totally different.


Why Do So Many Authors Love ‘Eternal Sunshine of The Spotless Mind?’

by Shelt Garner

If I had any clout, I would answer this question and try to sell the piece to someone like New York Magazine or Vox. But, alas, I don’t have any clout and I’m big old nobody.

But I am an aspiring novelist, if nothing else, and so here’s my own off-the-cuff explanation for why I love ESoTSM so much.

For me, it’s about how well written and well thought out the movie is. And, I think, writers really identify with an element of the movie that isn’t even show in the shot script — Clementine writes a huge novel about Joel. So, in a sense, it’s not Clementine who is the muse, it’s Joel.

And writers identify with how one love can really throw you for a loop and inspire you to do great things while at the same time tearing you up in the process.

There’s a lot more I could probably write if I was being paid to answer this particular question. But I still have two years until the 20th anniversary. Maybe my fortunes will change by that point.

Is New York City Going To Hell In A Handbasket?

by Shelt Garner

This is the kind of story I would write if I won the lottery and had the funds to start a snarky Gawker-like blog. But, alas, I have no money and one listens to me. But it is interesting how there is a growing sense among some that New York City is lurching towards turning into a 1970s shit hole again.

I only visit NYC occasionally and whenever I do, I love the place. I may never be “young in the city,” but it would be pretty great to live there long-term before I drop dead.

From what I can tell, while NYC is definitely going through a transition of sorts, I don’t know if it’s turning in to an Escape From New York hellscape. Things are different from when they were before the pandemic, but they’re not, at least as of yet, THAT bad.

I think it’s a time of wait and see.

It could go either way. But we’re dealing with long term, macro trends. If I was writing for a neo-Gawker, I would talk to NYC experts and to everyday New Yorkers about what they thought.

It would be all very hammy and snarky. But, lulz, nothing matters.

Confessions Of A ‘Terribly Negative Person’

by Shelt Garner

The late Annie Shapiro called me — at the height of our emotional warfare over ROKon Magazine in Seoul — a “delusional jerk with a good heart.” And, honestly, if that’s the worst she could say about me, I’ll go with it.

I was kind of a drunk asshole at that point in time.

Anyway, I reminded of this quip about me on her part when the person behind the Mueller, She Wrote Twitter account explained why she blocked me. Two things stuck out.

One, she said I mischaracterized her “work” on Twitter.
Two, she said I was “terribly negative.”

Let’s address One first. She doesn’t come out and say that someone is going to save us, but she definitely does engage in a lot of breathless Twitter threads about this or that bad thing Trump and his coterie of ne’er-do-wells will bring them all down.

And this is isn’t going to happen.

So, yes, the Mueller, She Wrote account doesn’t SAY someone is “going to save us” but it is named after Mueller, who liberals in 2017 thought — you guessed it — would save us.

Now, as for me being “terribly negative,” I can take that. She and I have a very different take on the future of the American political system. She writes breathlessly — to great effect within Twitter liberal circles — about how we’re just ever so close to seeing the entire Trumplandia edifice that will be about to collapse.

And I think that’s bullshit.

We have to accept that around 2024 – 2025 we’re either going to have a civil war or turn into an autocracy. In other words, we’re fucked. She thinks we aren’t and I think we are.

If that causes me to be blocked by one of the better known “Resistance” Twitter liberal accounts, so be it. One person’s “terribly negative” is another person’s “being realistic.”