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Monthly Archives: October 2011

Flight or Fight

It’s days like this that make me take a good, hard look at my social life…. I’d probably have to squint and tilt my head a little as well, seeing as it’s pretty much non-existent.

I ran into a high school friend today as a Halloween church party who now has a kid, and somehow that made me feel old and edging towards spinster-hood. I have to keep reminding myself that 23 does not an old maid, me make. I’ve still got friends who have equally bad love lives as me, come on. Sure, every year around this time I start seeing wedding announcements in the mail, but it’s not like I’m going to be the last married… maybe.

How about we talk about writing, eh? I almost forgot that next month is NaNoWriMo! EE-GADS. To attempt or not to attempt? Camp NaNo was a failure for me. But, perhaps I’m thinking too big here. There is, perhaps, my greatest issue. It’s not “national write a perfect, best-selling novel month”, after all. I don’t have to be completely original and profound on the first draft. Depth and intrigue can be left — somewhat — for the second, third, fourth, fifth (I could keep going…) drafts.

Okay, new goal for the next month. I’m taking up the NaNoWriMo challenge, and I’m going to write the worst story I’ve ever written. I’m going to throw in everything and anything that pops into my head. I don’t care if it looks like the work of a mental patient, I’m gonna write it. If I lose steam I’ll just drop a sex scene in there, stir things up…. eh, well, maybe not. Maybe…

Anyway, there’s me challenging myself, shaking a defiant fist at NaNoWriMo and the world. You haven’t seen the last of me!

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Posted by on October 29, 2011 in Uncategorized

 

A Blurb

Ugh.

Ever accidently answer your phone, thinking it’s your alarm clock? Did that this morning. Have no idea who called me. It didn’t sink in until after I’d accidently hung up on the accidental answer that it had been a call and not the alarm. Didn’t recognize the number though.

Anyway, for the last few days I’ve been going to bed feeling like my eyes are swollen. Staring at computer screens for too long is bad for you, kiddies. That, and staying up too late to read. I’m beginning to feel old. I’m not even partying into the night. I’m reading. Speaking of which, still hoping for some good ghost story suggestions.

I think I’m going to go do something that doesn’t require using my eyes now…

 
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Posted by on October 27, 2011 in Uncategorized

 

Follow the spiders

Halloween is not just one day in my family.

By the first Friday of this month, we had spiders crawling along the walls, the ceilings, and a whole witch’s workshop set up in the kitchen. That weekend we ate our meals anywhere but the dining table because there were boxes full of decorations and random skeletons piled on top of it.

We’re a normal looking family, it’s true. Quite the unassuming neighbors… until Halloween. We’re talking tombstones (all made by my dad), black lights, fog machines, scary sounds, dancing ghosts, floating pumpkins, etc. Oh, and we can’t forget the spiders that have officially taken over the place this year. It’s all kid friendly — well, for the most part. My youngest neice hugs the fake spiders we have that are the size of chickens, but that doesn’t mean all kiddies are going to like the spiders. — and things just add onto it year after year.  My mom has been suggesting that we donate or throw away some of it, since she’s starting to feel overwhelmed.

Now, when it comes to costumes on Halloween… my family doesn’t really do the dressing up thing. Occasionally someone will throw on a witch’s hat, or a cowboy hat. Yeah, we’re lazy when it comes to costumes. I thought I’d dress up a little this year though. I figured, why not? I’ll let my Halloween spirit shine a little this year.

What to wear….

I’m thinking something kid friendly, yet morbid. Hey, if I’m going to start showing my true nature I might as well start this Halloween. 😉

 
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Posted by on October 26, 2011 in Life

 

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Careful what you think!

You know how sometimes you fall into this funk or find yourself in a seemingly never-ending dry spell and then – wham! – someone wants you to finish a project within 12 hours and another person is asking for a 500 word article? No?

Well, I spent most of my day today thinking up names for pieces of jewelry and writing up paragraphs. This is what happens when you say to yourself, “Self, I’m going to pick up the pace on my writing.” It’s kind of like the time that I’d grieved over the fact that my roommate had to sleep with a lamp on, and wound up losing electricity that same night.

I didn’t mean it!

Anyway, I’m a little tired of squinting at pictures of opals and pearls. Time to think about fiction.

I’ve been reading this book called “The Ice Cradle” by Mary Ann Winkowski and Maureen Foley. When I picked it up, the title made me think that it might be a disturbing and creepy story. Not so much. It reminds me of the show Ghost Whisperer. I mean it really reminds me of it. Woman can see spirits and helps them into the light, her grandmother took her to funerals and deathbeds when she was young to teach her about her abilities…

Oh, and yes I have watched many episodes of Ghost Whisperer. What can I say? I’m a girl. I like things like tearful moments, and chocolate. And, like many of the fairer sex I will consume copious amounts of each whether or not it’s good for me.

So, I’m going to finish the book — probably some time tomorrow morning — and then go look for something a bit more bone chilling.

I have been looking at this book as both a source of entertainment and learning. I don’t usually turn off the writer’s side of my brain anymore when I’m reading, because I like to make note of things I like and don’t like. There are some points in this book that I would like to keep in mind when working on my own stories, but there are some that I also want to avoid.

Moral of the story: Read a lot. Best-sellers, new authors, old authors, books with pretty and plain covers. Avoid the ones that may make you want to gouge your eyes out, but keep on reading. You might be surprised at what you find.

Oh, and any suggestions for a good, chilling ghost story? I’m in the Halloween mood.

 
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Posted by on October 20, 2011 in Books, Life, Writing

 

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It’s About Time!

I’ve been Miss Avoid-ee for, well, a very long time. I’ve been avoiding posting, avoiding life… just plain avoiding. I’m going to be posting a blurb about a nifty award I got — around the time that I started my avoiding phase — but right now I’m going to be catching you up with my life.

I went to a writers’ group. Yup. With writers. Whodda thunk? It was an all women group that I kind of found myself plopped into by my mother. I’ll be honest and say that I wasn’t too thrilled at first. That was thanks to the dear ol’ mom I mentioned before. She essentially planned it for me like someone signs up their four year old up for day camp during the summer.

“She needs this,” she said, while I was sitting there, rather unmotivated to defend myself because I was just getting over a cold. The same night that this happened, she gave me a lecture on being prepared with answers to people’s questions for me.

That requires some back story. We were at an event: large room filled with chatting people, who also happened to be eating around tables crowded close together. I was asked a question by someone two seats down, and it took me a good moment to get the answer out to them. My brain was addled, okay?! The constant drone around me, cold medicine still lurking in my bloodstream and the fact that I’d just gone to take a bite of pie all played into that mess of a moment.

But, no, my mom has to only remember the times when I’m socially awkward and stumbling over my own feet. She ignored the fact that I had a rather good conversation with the girl right next to me, who I didn’t know at all.

Now, we were talking about the writing group. It was like coming up for air. I got to talk, face to face, about writing with people who understood writing. No one was in awe or telling me that they bet they’d see my novels out their some time soon. No one asked me what the “trick” to writing was, or tried to give me an idea for a book.

It was a relief, and the most important thing was that everyone there understood that it’s not always that easy to write. It’s sometimes difficult to get an idea out of your head when it doesn’t want to be out yet. Last month I felt like when I told people my story was coming slowly, they thought I was just trying to put the square block through the circle when, OBVIOUSLY, it should go in the square hole.

Oh, yes, obviously. I should have already written my entire story according to the same people who are constantly asking me writing questions that usually have an obvious answer to me. And, yes, I’m starting to sound like an arrogant idiot. I’ll leave you with this quote then, from an author I’ve grown fond of in the past year.

I had a roommate that said that you couldn’t tell that Stephen King could write all the terrifying and creepy things that he does just by looking at him. Though I never said anything, I had always been able to tell by looking at his eyes. I did, however, remind her that I — a quiet, unassuming person who many referred to as “nice” and “sweet” — love Halloween, grin excitedly at fear farms, and am willing to write a story that ends with a middle school boy being eaten by a monster. Perhaps this is a like-knows-like situation?

“Writing isn’t about making money, getting famous, getting dates, getting laid, or making friends. In the end, it’s about enriching the lives of those who will read your work, and enriching your own life, as well. It’s about getting up, getting well, and getting over. Getting happy, okay? Getting happy.” -Stephen King
 

 
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Posted by on October 19, 2011 in Books, Life, Writing

 

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