Living Your Dream

I dislike most societies these days. So much focus is on leading a specific life or fighting for what you don’t yet have. It’s tiring and often we lose sight of what we really want to be doing. For me, it’s diving into art. Writing, drawing, making steampunk or faerie inspired pieces, learning to paint or play violin.

But there’s this annoying crap called money that drives us away from these sorts of things because they aren’t practical or whatever other nonsense they shout to keep us from living the lives we actually want.

So I’m curious my little readers, what is your dream? If money wasn’t an issue, what would you be doing with your time? Don’t be shy! I won’t make fun of you at all. I just want to hear about the dream you had before they told you to be realistic.

Accountability

As NaNoWriMo draws closer to beginning, my focus on writing grows stronger. And of course my excitement and planning is heightened. But with school going on and hopefully taking on an extra job soon, time management can be a problem. If you’re doing NaNo this will probably be your number one hurdle to jump day after day as you fight your word count. NaNo bloggers all around will tell you to keep track of your word count, to have some accountability with your fellow writers or even just the people around you who know what you’re setting out to do.

I’m here to tell you to take that accountability a step further. Make sure people know how you’re feeling. Let people know when you’re excited so they can be excited with you. But also let them know when you skipped sleeping last night to knock out some extra words. Let them know when you’re writing something hard and possibly personal or trigger worthy. We draw from our experiences and it can hurt to write about something that is still hurting us. Let them know that this novel is kicking your butt and completely overwhelming you. Because if you don’t tell someone, you’re the only one dealing with it. And that’s hard during any time period and you’re about to embark on an adventure.

This year, I’ll be writing about some tough stuff again because it’s therapeutic for me. I’ll be bringing up themes surrounding my grandfather’s death and what his life still means to me. I’ll also be featuring abandonment because I’ve recently separated from my husband and I haven’t fully come to terms with it. My writing is personal but I’m not doing it alone. My family and friends will be there along side me and just a phone call away should I need them. At the same time, I’ll be staying central to my favorite genre and writing a story I’ve currently dubbed “Fantasy Saves the World” because it continually saves mine.

And be nice to yourself this November. Pump your caffeine but don’t overdose. Make sure you’re eating and getting enough sleep for your non-writing duties as well. And I’ll be here too and you can help keep me accountable as well. We’re in this together and win or lose, we are embarking on a great adventure that not everyone can even try.

Date a Girl Who Reads

I’ve seen this around the internet many times and each time I find it to be true. My source: https://www.goodreads.com/quotes/437516-you-should-date-a-girl-who-reads-date-a-girl

“Date a girl who reads. Date a girl who spends her money on books instead of clothes. She has problems with closet space because she has too many books. Date a girl who has a list of books she wants to read, who has had a library card since she was twelve.

Find a girl who reads. You’ll know that she does because she will always have an unread book in her bag.She’s the one lovingly looking over the shelves in the bookstore, the one who quietly cries out when she finds the book she wants. You see the weird chick sniffing the pages of an old book in a second hand book shop? That’s the reader. They can never resist smelling the pages, especially when they are yellow.

She’s the girl reading while waiting in that coffee shop down the street. If you take a peek at her mug, the non-dairy creamer is floating on top because she’s kind of engrossed already. Lost in a world of the author’s making. Sit down. She might give you a glare, as most girls who read do not like to be interrupted. Ask her if she likes the book.

Buy her another cup of coffee.

Let her know what you really think of Murakami. See if she got through the first chapter of Fellowship. Understand that if she says she understood James Joyce’s Ulysses she’s just saying that to sound intelligent. Ask her if she loves Alice or she would like to be Alice.

It’s easy to date a girl who reads. Give her books for her birthday, for Christmas and for anniversaries. Give her the gift of words, in poetry, in song. Give her Neruda, Pound, Sexton, Cummings. Let her know that you understand that words are love. Understand that she knows the difference between books and reality but by god, she’s going to try to make her life a little like her favorite book. It will never be your fault if she does.

She has to give it a shot somehow.

Lie to her. If she understands syntax, she will understand your need to lie. Behind words are other things: motivation, value, nuance, dialogue. It will not be the end of the world.

Fail her. Because a girl who reads knows that failure always leads up to the climax. Because girls who understand that all things will come to end. That you can always write a sequel. That you can begin again and again and still be the hero. That life is meant to have a villain or two.

Why be frightened of everything that you are not? Girls who read understand that people, like characters, develop. Except in the Twilightseries.

If you find a girl who reads, keep her close. When you find her up at 2 AM clutching a book to her chest and weeping, make her a cup of tea and hold her. You may lose her for a couple of hours but she will always come back to you. She’ll talk as if the characters in the book are real, because for a while, they always are.

You will propose on a hot air balloon. Or during a rock concert. Or very casually next time she’s sick. Over Skype.

You will smile so hard you will wonder why your heart hasn’t burst and bled out all over your chest yet. You will write the story of your lives, have kids with strange names and even stranger tastes. She will introduce your children to the Cat in the Hat and Aslan, maybe in the same day. You will walk the winters of your old age together and she will recite Keats under her breath while you shake the snow off your boots.

Date a girl who reads because you deserve it. You deserve a girl who can give you the most colorful life imaginable. If you can only give her monotony, and stale hours and half-baked proposals, then you’re better off alone. If you want the world and the worlds beyond it, date a girl who reads.

Or better yet, date a girl who writes.”

Old Stories Revived Again

Blah, blah, blah, back to school.

What I’m really excited for is putting many of my old abandoned stories together to combine into one amazing world! And I don’t mean recent ones that some of you know of. Instead I’m referring to stories that have been collecting dust in a box under my bed since at least middle school.

This story features fae, shape shifters, elves, witches, and many other mystified creatures. I will be working in high level fantasy with higher realms and extremely amusing methods of transportation. Ever wanted to fly on a giant dragonfly? My characters will!

Sacrifice Returns!

I’ve been away for some time taking care of life. While doing such ordinary things, I convinced myself I was too exhausted to write. But I’ve slapped myself back into line and I’m getting ready to hit it big with a great plan. So gather around because I have big news!

Some of you who know me personally may remember my excitement in 2011 over the completion of my first draft of Sacrifice – the first completed draft I have ever managed. Some of you have actually read said manuscript. I’m delighted to announce that I have plans for its master reconstruction.

Since completing Sacrifice, I have written many scenes, talked to billions of characters in my head, and actually finished another whole novel. (Check back with me on it in three years given my current pattern.) But in doing all of this, I haven’t forgotten Sacrifice or my achievements contained within its pages. I have plans for these characters and their story will get rewritten. But don’t be sad. This new revision will be my launching point for an entire world of stories. Not necessarily sequels but those aren’t out of the question. I’m thinking more along the lines of separate stories but in the same fantastical universe of my creation.

Characters may change and some may even merge to form one new character, but I assure you, every change will be for the better. I’m excited to reunite with Jadara and the rest of the gem children. But maybe there won’t be as much gem eating this time around. And no more meaningless pillow fights. Well, maybe one meaningless pillow fight. 🙂

What was that?

I noticed a huge jump in page views today from zero per day for about a week up to eleven today. I’m assuming some of you may have been stopped by my server changes this past week and weekend. Sorry about that. It should be all fixed now and my future changes – at least near future changes – shouldn’t take my site down.

But now it’s back up for you and I’ll be getting to my schedule of twice weekly updates. Not sure which dates will be my best update days yet but we’ll have to find that out together.

As for now. I’m gathering up some old pieces to clean up while working through a really old character’s back story. And he’s upwards of four hundred years old so there’s plenty of back story there. I may post some bits for you to enjoy because I really want you to be excited over this character. His name is Trevor by the way. You’ll want to keep your eyes open for him.

Anyway, thanks for holding out on me through any issues you may have had with the site. And if you didn’t notice any, apparently you aren’t checking the site often enough. I’m only kidding. I love having you all here and would love for you to visit me often but life is out there and we really shouldn’t be sitting on blogs all day. For those of us who do we should at least get out to talk about what we’ve read there. That would be fun right? I’m sure there are groups in your area who do just that so check them out if that sounds fun to you! (I’d suggest checking meetup.com first though since they just keep growing.)

There’s always more we could be doing so let’s do that. Whatever it may be for each of us. For me it’s writing so I’ll be around. Have a great whatever it is when you’re reading this!

Almost Back

Finals are over. Classes are (mostly) passed. Break is here. Now I just need to rekindle my relationship with sleep which I have abandoned most of these last few weeks.

This isn’t much of an update but I will definitely be getting back to a regular posting schedule very soon. I’m hoping to be back on track by this Friday and no later than Monday. In the meantime, you should check out or reread some of my old posts. Some of them are good enough to read a few times! Or you could follow me over on Facebook for more frequent updates and random bits of whatever. Or sign up for an email follow, link to the RSS feed or follow the blog some other way to stay updated. That way, when I do post something, you’ll hear about it right away!

But for now, this crazy writer college student person thing needs some sleep.

Arguing with the Cursor

Curse that blinking cursor. Sitting there, blinking in time against that stupid blank background. I’ll show it. I’ll write about it and make it dance across this dump page making it poop out letters from it’s behind.

I have bested you again stupid cursor. You can never win against a mind that talks to inanimate objects regularly. Give me a chair, a rug. Any day, at any time. I can beat you time and time again. You will never win.

Except for those nights when you win simply by default. Those nights where I’m up too late and writing for too long. When words blur and my eyes burn. Only when I cannot hold on any longer and you are stuck blinking because my passed out and sleeping self never turned off the computer.

How’s that for a win? Default and a sleeping opponent. Is that the only way you can beat me? Then I shall give you those. You can win those and I will win every battle I am conscious for. How do you like those odds? Don’t have much to say to that?

Well isn’t that always your problem. You never say anything. How can you win a word war without words? Stupid cursor. Your page is no longer blank and you have lost your power over me. Now spit out more words from your behind. Ha ha ha!

Is it your behind? Or are you walking backwards across this page and really just vomiting out these words. Wow, that’s gross. Then again so is words coming out as poop. You know, maybe I’ll stop analyzing you and just let you dance around the page running scared from my words.

Yes! That’s it! You hate words. They scare you. Yet you are forced to be only ever one step away from them. Poor cursor. But then again, you’re the one who started all of this. Sitting there, perched on the top of a vast blank space. And mocking me with your rhythmic blinking. Whose idea was it to make you blink anyway? Who thought that would be a good idea? The only time it’s helpful to see you blink is for a split second to make sure my computer isn’t frozen.

Even your most basic function is fairly useless. How do you feel about that? You don’t feel it, you say? Oh you don’t say anything, you mean? I’m confused now. Who have I been talking to this whole time? Myself? Really? But that never happens. I’m so snooty and never reply to myself. Why would I talk to someone like that. Well, true, it is better than talking to no one. But you’re here. You’re here through all of my writing endeavors.

That’s an odd thought. You’re always here, never say anything, yet I often feel you mocking me. You mean to say that I’m making this all up? No! That’s too much like being creative. And if I’m being creative, I shouldn’t be writing about a dumb cursor. I should be writing stories!

Well, then, let’s get working. I’ll meet you over on another page.

Scared Little Writer

I had always admired authors. Their attention to every detail so that no item laid useless in their creations. Every word supported every desire of every character. Writers had a way with words of course but they also had to be deeply connected to people and the emotions they emitted. Authors knew what kind of effect anything could have on the things around it. And no one knew better than writers that every story didn’t really have a happy ending unless it was forced.

Somehow I got it in my head from a young age that I could be an author myself. I’m still not sure if my insanity came first or if that sprang out of my writings. When I wrote, I had complete control over every smile and tear. I could make people fall in love or punch each other. The more control I had in my writing, it seemed, the less I had on my reality.

Stopping was never an option to me though. I tried to but it was comparable to someone who stopped breathing. They either passed out, returned to rapid breathing to catch their breath, or they died. Writing was important to me. Still I never thought I’d be writing for my career. Or my life.

It was way more practical to have a regular job and write in whatever time you had to spare. Instead, I was writing because it was my last resort. You never realize how scary your biggest desire is until it’s staring you in the face and begging for your forgiveness.

Crippled by anxiety, I dragged myself to the laptop every day and poured out my soul on those colorless screens. I had always spent my writing time as if no one would every read a word of what I was writing. Looking back I should have realized that was odd for any writer to think that way. How would they sell anything if they never let go of it and made it public to the world?

I guess I always assumed I’d get over that somehow. Like I could eventually just start spitting out crap I wouldn’t mind others reading. Even when I found those writing pieces, I had trouble watching anyone read them. Worse even than that was when they sent me feedback. I craved it but had a panic attack every time I read or heard “I loved it! When are you going to write more?”

You liked it? Oh god, I wasn’t expecting that to happen. What do I do with – what was it even called – enjoyment? Over something I wrote? Did I send you the wrong file?

Those days were the worst. Rejection I could handle. I could stand in defense of my characters and my choices for them. Then reader could shrug and go read something else and I could crawl back to my characters and console them with more stories of their adventures.

Why had enjoyment from a reader set me back so much? Maybe it was because they liked who I wrote that character to be and by extension they liked who I wanted to be. But since I wasn’t there yet, it was like a weird chain rejection they didn’t even realize they had set off.

I wasn’t ready yet. I wanted to be able to pick up a sword like my characters and wield it in the face of every disaster. But my first challenge proved to be more difficult than any monster I could imagine. She blocked me at every path and countered my every move. She was me and more so she was my negativity taking root in my hope.

Finals finals everywhere

I’m checking off final projects and exams as I go but I’m still right in the middle of the stress. Luckily I found the eye of this storm and have some time to collect my thoughts. I figured I’d drop you a line and let you know that I’m still doing alright. My biggest project is out of the way now but I still have to battle with my biggest exam and write a few essays.

My apologies for not posting anything for a while. I should have queued up more stuff for while I was busy but I kind of forgot. So before I sign off for today, I’ll queue up some more short pieces from my past for your amusement. As always, I love to hear feedback and your thoughts on a piece.

And yes, I’m much better with prose than I will ever be in poetry. 😉

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