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Sunday, July 17, 2011

Writing, Nerds & Living On A Prayer...

“Like ‘love’, ‘hope’ is one of those ridiculously disproportional words that by all rights should be a lot longer.”
- Harry Dresden from the book “Turn Coat” by Jim Butcher

I had originally intended to update this every week while participating in the Clarion Write-A-Thon, but alas... my timing was flung into chaos.

I'm here now though.  *note the smiley face insertion*  :-)

In any case, I have been writing my daily goal of at least 500 words/day.  It's funny how such a little thing (which felt like a huge thing when I originally made my pledge) can make you feel so proud and accomplished.

I remember I was trying to do this notebook thing a few friends told me about where you try to write at least three pages a day of whatever the frak is on your mind.  Anything.  Could be a story idea, recent events, a rant... anything.  I think the idea was to get the creative juices flowing or something like that so it would get easier and easier and then something would come from all that daily activity.

I remember days when it was easy, but I remember the days where I struggled to make a page, much less THREE.  The little devil on my shoulder suggested writing bigger, that it would fill up space faster.  The angel, on the other hand (or shoulder to keep a theme consistent), walked over to the devil, flicked it in the center of the forehead saying that wasn't honest and was a bad idea.

Yeah... I tend to listen to the forehead flicker regardless of how appealing the forehead flicked's ideas are.

I found the same difficulty when trying to follow the habits of Terry Pratchett who said that he writes at least 300 words/day because he felt that if he didn't write everyday, he couldn't call himself a writer.  There were days where that goal was easy... and then there were days where I wanted to stab my brain with a Panzer.

But writing is work, right?  I mean, sure we can all be imaginative and create various things/ideas, but we all must work to get there.

Frak, everything is work, but to do work that we love... yeah, that's the shit right?  I mean, if someone told me I could do a Kill Bill type movie but all I had to do was go to the gym and train?  Frak yeah, I'd do it.  NO BRAINER!  What?  I get to wield a sword and do martial arts and kick tons of ass.  The gym ain't nothing.  (It's sort of like the little boy being told he can't play his video games until he does his homework.  He does the necessary to do the fun which with the payoff doesn't really feel like work at all.)

Yeah, I'm babbling right now.

So, back on track.

Since I'm a week behind on this, let me update you on the past two week's progress, shall I?  (Yes, I shall.)

Week #3

Sunday, July 3rd - 628
Monday, July 4th - 812
Tuesday, July 5th - 581
Wednesday, July 6th - 510
Thursday, July 7th - 749
Friday, July 8th - 689
Saturday, July 9th - 839

TOTAL for Week #3 =  4,808

Week #4
Sunday, July 10th - 1,789
Monday, July 11th - 500
Tuesday, July 12th - 901
Wednesday, July 13th - 538
Thursday, July 14th - 513
Friday, July 15th & Saturday, July 16th -1,366

TOTAL for Week #4 = 5,607

Combined total for Weeks #3 & #4 = 10,415
Total so far (as of but not including today) = 18,996

I will admit, I am a little impressed with myself, but it's all getting strained a bit.

I had started working on this novel in November 2010 and have been pecking away at it since then.  I had written a series of segments with notes in between and have been trying to fill in those empty spaces with segments that somehow link the whole thing together.

I feel like I'm running out of things to write.

I need to go through what I have (which is in several different docs), sort them and outline a bit, but I want to do my daily 500.  Ugh!  (Sometimes I feel I make things hard on myself... but honestly, I don't mean to do it on purpose.)  I just need to get organized.

And things are going to get trickier in the days to come.

I am presently trying to figure out a way to head out with friends to San Diego.  It's that time of year again for San Diego Comic-Con (aka SDCC), but when passes went on sale, I couldn't afford a 4-day and all passes went like hotcakes.  Even the resale of the returned passes went like crack-hotcakes.  So I thought okay... I'm going to miss out on SDCC... again.  It was extra bummeriffic since one of my favorite shows (CHUCK!) was on the bubble yet made it to yet another season, it's fifth, which would be it's last.

(insert sobbing here)

Thinking that my friends would go off to SDCC and leave me home to be bummed and all that for another year, something awesome happened in the way of NerdHQ.  It's a convention of sorts put together by the lovely people of The Nerd Machine.  So with that dropped bomb of saucesome, I re-thought my So Cal excursion and debated on actually going.

The amount of people that reached out and wanted me to go... even went as far as offering up their rooms as a place to crash.  And these people have never even met me!  (GO NERDS!!!)  I really REALLY want to go and meet my NERD brethren and sistren at the premiere of NerdHQ.  I also would like to meet all the peoples of The Nerd Machine (including Zachary Levi since I won't be able to make it to any of his panels at SDCC).  I'm also hoping that even though I was late with my form (since most of my plans wouldn't be solidified until last minute - as in the day before my friends and I would leave), they'll let me volunteer.  Hell, I'll be available the entire four days there.  I'm sure I'm not the only one, but meh... we'll see.

So if I go to that, I have a ride and a place to stay but I'll be drinking water, licking crackers, and doing an immense amount of walking.  I'll pretty much be going in broke (since being unemployed and bills will do that to a person) but hopefully I'll be so damn excited, I won't care.  And who knows?  Maybe I'll lose some weight due to this? 

The plan (if I go) will be to bring pens, notebooks, a book, mp3 player and camera with me so in case I'm left alone to my own devices, I'll have a way to entertain myself.

But see, the thing that's also gnawing at me is my writing.  Like when I was doing NaNoWriMo last year, and I had my birthday and Thanksgiving to contend with.  I'll have NerdHQ to deal with.  The plan is to leave hella early Wednesday morning and come back Sunday... sometime.  In the fantasies of my mind, I imagine that I will be SO jam-packed with meeting people and playing games and such that I will be way too busy to write. 

That's FIVE WHOLE DAYS, people.  And the Clarion Write-A-Thon ends shortly after I get back (on the 29th).  It's on the honor system, I know, and I want to do my part, but I don't think I'll be able to do my daily word goal while in San Diego.

(head-slam-wall-repeat)

Now in realizing this, I immediately thought I'll just write a lot before I go and when I get back, but I'm at a part of my writing where I think I'm nearly done with the main first draft writing part (with bits and bobs here and there that need filling in), so I'm not sure how I'd fulfill my daily goal.

I'm thinking too much on it, I know.  I'm like that.  (sigh)

In other writing news, I'm still having issues with that "ex-love" piece.  On the flipside of that, while my friends' are out visiting family in Texas, I am not only taking care of their kitties (they've been nieces and nephews to me at this point), but am also filling in doing two reviews for Jimbo while he and his wife are on a mini-vacation.  I'm admittedly a little nervous but it's writing.  I'm always nervous when my writing goes... out there... into the ether... for people to read... and hate and criticize...

I'm covering Leverage tonight and Eureka tomorrow night.  I'm less nervous with Leverage since I'm all current with that show, but Eureka is a little stressful (well, to me) since I've only seen a smattering of episodes per season.  I know the general gist of the series, but I'm not familiar with all the nooks and crannies of the characters, relationships, storylines...

Jimbo thought this past Monday was going to be the premiere of the new season when in fact it's just the second half of the last season.  Originally he had invited me over to watch the new episode so I could get a feel of the new season and write from there, but after realizing it's the same season, he suggested I could write it from a newbie standpoint.

(head-slam-wall-repeat)
(intermittent internal sobbing)
(head-slam-wall-repeat)

I'm sure I'll be fine.  I'm just having performance anxiety... like when I'd audition for school plays or perform in competitive speech.  I'd always be all gut-twisted, lump in my throat, "holy crap, what the frak am I doing?", but as soon as I started, I was cool.

I still have to write my True Blood reviews for Lon.  I'm so behind.  I have no idea if he even wants them.  (sigh)

In writing this, I feel like I suck... and badly!

Okay, I think I should sign off on this for now.  Need to chill out for a while as well as run some errands and cheer myself up.  Hopefully I'll be able to do that.

Later my lovelies!

Have Goodness!
Rae


PS (to the Universe)... Bring me good news Monday please?  I'd really appreciate it. Thanks.

Monday, July 4, 2011

My World Is Shakey, But At Least I'm Writing

I just want to be perfect.
~Nina from "Black Swan" 

Hello there my delicious cupcakes!  I should be in bed right now.  Okay, well I AM in bed with the minibook on my lap, but you know what I mean.  I should be trying to SLEEP right now, but instead I'm updating this blog.

I need a life.  Either that, or to type faster.  OR to be able to project my thoughts into a word doc and post it while I sleep.

Oh fantastical technology of my dreams.  Why do you not exist?

Anyway, I think I've been doing a good job meeting my goal every day (save the one day I went to the beach after not sleeping for almost 24 hours, and I died when I eventually got home, but I made up for it the next day).

Quick update on Week #2 of Clarion West Write-A-Thon:

Sunday, June 26th - 628
Monday, June 27th - 505
Tuesday, June 28th - 1,138
Wednesday, June 29th & Thursday, June 30th - 1,020
Friday, July 1st - 586
Saturday, July 2nd - 528

That's a total of 4,405 words for Week #2... an uber grand total of 8,581 as of Saturday.  So I think that keeps me ahead again this week with roughly a day's worth of words ahead of the minimum.

Go ME!  It's my birthday!  Go ME!  Get busy!

I'm surprised that I'm able to write at all with all the drama and stress I've been dealing with. But then again perhaps that's what I'm drawing from for my stories.  Perhaps if my life were perfect I wouldn't have anything to write about.

When I think of my poetry, I don't think any of it is happy.  It's best written in my darker, sadder moments.

Then there's that saying of "write what you know".  I've also said I have problems with writing love scenes, creepy scenes and fight scenes.  I think I've got the creepy taken care of.  As far as fight scenes go, I feel I'm much better at verbal than physical, but I've gotten better.   

Love...

Anyway, maybe after the Write-A-Thon is done, I'll start piecing everything together.  It'd be nice to finish the novel (even in first draft form).  Then I can go through editing.

Ack!  Editing.

In other news, I really haven't done anything with the "former love" piece.  700 words or less.  Oh dear me.  Another deadline.  This is going to kill me.

I did, however, finish a show review piece for a friend of mine as sort of an audition to see if he really wants me to write for his site.  He'd proposed the idea to me after we'd hung out at a friends' engagement party.  We'd talked about writing, and he messaged me via the ever-social Facebook to say he was "hurting for content and could use a new voice on there frequently" and asked if I'd like to be a contributor.  "Maybe do some reviews, some editorials, whatever. Maybe provide our nerd updates for the week or something?"  I emailed it to him earlier in the day.  We'll see what he thinks.  I think it's crap but hey... this is me about my writing we're talking about here, right?  I'll just wait to hear what he thinks, and we'll go from there.

I have been writing more than I have been in a while.  Granted it's not all for my novel, but writing is writing and is a good thing, right?  I mean... I wrote out a dream I had that would not leave my memory so I wrote it out in a story (adding a few bits here and there).

Writing is therapy for me.  (The same with video games.)

I wrote this bit during my first week of the Write-A-Thon.  And I wrote this as well as this latest bit last week.

I guess looking at my blogger pages has been stirring something in me.  I had hoped that I would be able to play with each of my "children" on a somewhat regular basis, but alas some of my children have been left unattended for a long time.  But I recently visited a couple of them and revamped their layouts a little bit... like this one and this one.  I want to do something with each of them so bad.

Ideas are formulating.

I've been eying this page (which I also changed the layout) lately which I think is the next one I'll be writing for.  I have an idea milling about in my brain area.  I'll write it out when it becomes a little more solid and... present.  Unlike "Stoically Challenged" in which I allow myself to bounce about with the assignments, with "a boy, a girl, and a line..", I'm doing them in order as I get them.  Of the suggestions my friends gave me, I think I went halfway through them... ish.  I got stumped with the last one I was given from my friend Oz, but now... I just might have something.

I think fondly of Nedea and Blue and Enyo.  And Noemi...

Oh my girls!  I'm such a bad mother.  Can you ever forgive me?

Okay, this post has taken a while to get through, and the sun's about to come out.  I really should retire.

I'm taking care of my friend's cat during the holiday.  They have four but one needs her shot twice a day.  They are taking care of the morning, and I'm taking care of the evening.  I think I'm going to take advantage of their empty house to get away from distractions and delve into a change of scenery.  Also, I didn't stop by Sunday night to watch our shows so I've got that to catch up on.

And I will totally be getting intimate with their coffee machine.  Awww yeah!!!

So I think I'll end this update here.  I hear the birds chirping, and I have to pee.  (TMI?  Well deal.  LOL!)

Before I go, I ask all of you ("you" being whoever decides to go slumming down in my blogger parts):

  • Do you find it easier to write when you're happy?  
  • Do you find it harder to write when you're depressed or angry?  
  • Do your moods effect you're writing output?  Productivity?  Quantity? Quality?

Okay my darlings... I'm outta here.

Later my lovelies!

Have Goodness!
Rae

PS... HAPPY FOURTH OF JULY EVERYONE!!!