Jay Lake: Writer

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[polls] Flash Fiction Open voting poll

This is the voting poll for the Flash Fiction Open [ jlake.com | LiveJournal ].

Which of the following flash fiction pieces do you like best?

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[travel|polls] How far have you travelled from your birthplace?

I’ve put up a new poll here.

When I was about nine, we were in the Washington, DC area on home leave. Mom and Dad took me to see the pediatrician, who shared a clinic with other doctors. Me, the kid who’d been born in Taiwan, and already lived there, Canada, Dahomey, Texas and DC, got to talking to an adult who told me he’d never in his life been more than forty miles from where he was born, right there in Northern Virginia.

That struck me as very bizarre. I had trouble imagining a life so limited, in fact. I’ve long since realized that my reaction did the gentleman a profound disservice — travel was my norm, and therefore my bias — but still, how strange.

In this spirit, I present a poll on how far you’ve gone from where you were born. Note multiple answers can be selected … I’m curious what the curve will look like. Feel free to comment on your childhood or adult travels and relocations, as well.

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[polls] How far have you travelled from your birthplace?

Per the posts here and here, I present a poll on how far you’ve gone from where you were born. Note multiple answers can be selected … I’m curious what the curve will look like. Feel free to comment on your childhood or adult travels and relocations, as well.

How far have you travelled (or lived) from the place where you were born?

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[polls] Another caption contest voting poll

Time for another caption contest voting poll. In celebration of my recent medical (mis)adventures, hath photochopped an image which per a suggestion from screamed to be the next caption contest.

Usual rules apply. Prize after the voting poll will be an inscribed copy of Green Powell’s | Amazon ] when available. Plus will get a bonus prize.

Jay Lake in hospital as interpreted by Martin Livings

Which caption do you like best?

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[polls] Voting poll for the panda caption contest

The voting poll for the caption contest announced here: [ jlake.com | LiveJournal ] Prize will be a hardback of Green Powell’s | Amazon ] (when it’s available) or another of my books of the winner’s choice. Have fun!


Which caption best captures the spirit of the photo above?

  • Matt H: Tai Shan always ended up giving his lunch money to the bigger pandas, and he never looked forward to gym class. (25%, 26 Votes)
  • goulo: "You have failed me for the last time, Admiral." (9%, 9 Votes)
  • biomekanic: "The power of Christ compels you!" (7%, 7 Votes)
  • djonn: Out of nowhere, Dr. McGuffin strikes, transforming Jay Lake and The Child with his diabolical Panda Beam! (7%, 7 Votes)
  • Jaws: I don't KNOW where the bomb is! And what’s this "waterbambooing" thing you're talking about? (6%, 6 Votes)
  • biomekanic: "I told you, no more wire coat hangers!" (5%, 5 Votes)
  • sacredmime: Small panda: "Don't hurt me, I'm on the endangered list!" (5%, 5 Votes)
  • biomekanic: "Is Ling-ling going to have to choke a bitch?" (5%, 5 Votes)
  • dinogrl: Ling Ling, if I told you once, I;ve told you one thousand times, QUIT Panda'ering to that Jay Lake! It's NOT going to work! You will not win this contest! Now STOP it! (3%, 3 Votes)
  • blogtiderising: Now, now, Junior. Put down that paw. We're socialists not fascists. (3%, 3 Votes)
  • slweippert: But Mom! It was funny when Dad did it! (3%, 3 Votes)
  • quantumage: I...Forgot...Safeword! (3%, 3 Votes)
  • love_of_anime: "Mom...I washed under my neck I swear-geez-I'm too old for this." (2%, 2 Votes)
  • stillsostrange: "But Mooooooommmm, everybody's wearing their collars popped!" "Not in my house, they're not." (2%, 2 Votes)
  • will_couvillier: I swear it's true! Hairless pink aliens stole all the bamboo, not me! (2%, 2 Votes)
  • sacredmime: "Pop quiz, punk--What's about to be black and white and red all over?" (2%, 2 Votes)
  • brent_kellmer: "No, no, George, Get a hold of yourself! You'll get through this -- you just have to be strong." (2%, 2 Votes)
  • mikigarrison: Posy was starting to wish that she'd gone for the Smokey the Bear gig -- being the Domestic Violence Panda might have more prestige and career potential, but a girl can only be choked s (2%, 2 Votes)
  • melissajm: "I swear, Billy gave me this black eye! Honest!" "Uh-huh." (2%, 2 Votes)
  • JSN: Auditions for the next Panda Express spokes-bear get out of hand when Junior gloats he's cuter than Eddie and Tom-Tom put together. (1%, 1 Votes)
  • kylecassidy: "Imagine," George Lucas told the crowd of aspiring filmmakers, "how much better the merchandising sales would have been had all the characters in Mommy Dearest been, say, panda bears. (1%, 1 Votes)
  • charlesatan: "Stay still so I can unzip you out of the panda costume." (1%, 1 Votes)
  • yourbob: But Mom! The whole gang's going to see "Kung Fu Panda." (1%, 1 Votes)
  • vg_ford: Really, Mom, I didn't take your copy of Mainspring! I don't know where it is! (1%, 1 Votes)
  • kradical: No, really, it was this big!!!!!! (1%, 1 Votes)
  • newroticgirl: SLAPFIGHT!!! (0%, 0 Votes)
  • Intelligentrix: Gimme yer lunch money! Don't make me give you a wedgie. (0%, 0 Votes)
  • kehrli: DOH! The thirtieth season of The Simpsons, now live-action with an all-panda cast, has been canceled. The cause was cited as 'low ratings' and not, as some have suggested, increasing opposit (0%, 0 Votes)
  • will_couvillier: Hai, CHOP!! (0%, 0 Votes)
  • wild_patience: "Mom, that tickles! Hey, when is it my turn to lead?" (0%, 0 Votes)
  • will_couvillier: I didn't do it! I swear, the polar bear did it, really! (0%, 0 Votes)
  • klingonguy: From the Spice Up Your Sex Life Calendar: Furry* Missionary Position with a Dwarf *Also available in Aardvark, Tiger, and Zebra suits. (0%, 0 Votes)
  • quantumage: Bear-atch! Puh-lease! (0%, 0 Votes)
  • martyn44: Mom, I didn't know it was your last one. Scout's honour! (0%, 0 Votes)
  • quantumage: Simpsons did it. (0%, 0 Votes)
  • quantumage: Raise your hand if you think drinking my last cold bamboo beer was a bad idea. Anyone? Anyone? (0%, 0 Votes)
  • cjmarsicano: No, no, no! I'm supposed to be leading! And we're learning the fox trot, not the tango! (0%, 0 Votes)
  • jaborwhalky: "Raise your hands in the air, wave them like you just don't care" (0%, 0 Votes)

Total Voters: 102

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Note some answers truncated by poll code length limitations. See the original posts for full text.

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[polls|writing] A bit more on the age of first publication poll

Age of First Publication (103 respondents)

With 103 respondents, the curve stays fairly similar to its earlier version [ jlake.com | LiveJournal ]. There is certainly a polling artefact in place due my imprecision in crafting the question — judging from comments, some people cited their first appearance in a school paper etc., others cited their first professional publication.

At the same time, I suspect even with a much better crafted survey instrument we’d see a similar, if perhaps less dramatic curve. I’ll generalize thusly: some people come to writing with enough raw talent to begin publishing early, and then grow into their craft. Those are the writers who started young. Some people (myself included) have to serve their decade+ of apprenticeship and write their million+ bad words, which explains the 31-35 bump.

There’s no defensible methodology here, it’s an amateur Internet survey with a self-selected response pool, but I still find this most interesting. Per a suggestion from , I’ll mount a poll in a few days on time-to-first-publication, measuring from the first serious effort. (In my case, 11 years; see above.)

Your thoughts? Other ways to look at this?

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[polls] Interim results from the age of first publication poll

Presented without comment (for now), anent the age of first publication poll [ jlake.com | LiveJournal ]. 56 respondents in this snapshot of the data.

Age of First Publication (56 respondents)

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[polls|writing] Literary generations and age of publication

I was chatting with about literary generations today. At my age (b. 1964, currently 44), I’m a bit too young for the Baby Boomers and a bit too old for Gen X. I’m in one of those “cusp” demographic cohorts. My literary generation is an entirely different affair, as my fiction first saw print when I was 37, which makes me a bit older than many of my literary peers.

All of which makes me wonder, if you are professionally published, at what age did you first appear in print? I’ve put up a poll here. If I get a decent set of results, I’ll generate a graph and do some off-the-cuff analysis. Feel free to amplify your poll answer in remarks here or at the poll itself.

What are your thoughts on this? Is the question of chronological age vs. literary generation even relevant?

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[polls] At what age did you first appear in print?

Feel free to amplify your response in comments.

If you've been published, at what age did you first appear in print?

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