Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Turning it on and off

This morning while I was taking my walk, sweating in the eighty degrees (it's not the heat, it's the humidity - yeah right), I was thinking, as I usually do. Lots of varied thoughts ran through my head, including ideas for stories and poems. Which has not happened lately.

At times I think that it would be nice to be able to just turn on my writer's mind with the flick of a switch. I can't seem to do that. A lot of writers say they do that, they just "put in the time" and are able to crank stuff out. It's not because I only wait for inspiration (well, sometimes I do wait, but it never comes), but that if I set myself a schedule and say "I'm going to sit down at x o'clock and write for xyz minutes/hours," then what tends to happen is I sit there. And sit there. And sit there some more.

Oh, I've heard about various rituals that writers have to get into that space. I'll make a pot of tea or a cup of coffee or a mocha with whipped cream (a cool weather ritual). I'll clean off my desk. I'll sit in another room and put music on. None of that guarantees anything. Even my tried and not-always-true method of taking a walk often results in nary a scribble in my little notebook.

I don't usually suffer from insomnia, so there are rarely wee hours for me to spend with the blank page. Oh, I've tried getting up early and writing, but just like when I was in college, anything before 8:30 AM or so that requires the use of language, is not likely to produce any good results.

And I was thinking about all this on/off business in relation to writing, because I got an idea for a poem (while walking) that involved a realization of how I turn off other parts of my psyche. And for some reason, it's a hell-of-a-lot easier to turn them off than turn them on. Sorta like old fluorescent light bulbs. You can flip that switch and turn them off quick, plunging you into darkness. But turn them on, and they flicker and buzz and only very slowly come to life. It takes awhile. Didn't used to.

And I was wondering, is it just age? Or is something more going on?

Think I'll work on the poem.

Monday, June 21, 2010


This past weekend, I took the first steps (actually thousands of them, more later) to making my writing cabin in the woods a reality. I don't have time to post much tonight. Maybe tomorrow night. In the meantime, if you're interested, you can go here and check out the progress. Excuse the crappiness of the photo. I forgot my camera and all I had is my not-so-good camera phone.

We had a good, though exhausting weekend and then got home after midnight (so, Monday morning) to find our septic tank had backed up. Now we're a bit poorer than we were the other day. Needless to say, my cabin will have no plumbing!

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Getting Better

I'm feeling much better physically (though still not 100%).
A dilemma of sorts has been solved.
Mr. E and I are heading up to Maine tomorrow to do some more work on my writing cabin.
And... I can announce that a story of mine is included in Mind Fuck Fiction's Gluttony!

One of Mr. E's famous sparkler bombs to the right.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Some quietness

It's evening. The birds are settling down, no longer busy in the mulberry outside my window. It's rained a bit today and the sun never came out, so everything is damp, dripping. A crow calls from far off, probably heading to the rookery. It's cool, but humid. Later the fireflies will come out. They've been beautiful lately, making the trees glitter. For now, I'm quiet. Contemplating what my heart can hold.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Not sure what this is about

This is not the post I started out writing. A couple of days ago I pulled out this picture of me, taken 30 years ago (hence the huge plastic glass frames) when I was 22 years old. I was going to write about self-image, about how I look at this picture and see someone different than I saw myself then. Back when this picture was taken, I thought I was fat. I did not consider myself attractive at all. I was still living at home when this picture was taken, sometime in the Spring. At the time I was finishing up college, working part time, about to buy my first car, an old VW bus, involved with two men (neither who loved me), one of which would eventually lead me to the man I would marry. It would prove to be an important year. But when I look at this picture, all I feel is sadness.

Sadness because even though 30 years has passed, I feel just as foolish as I did then. That girl there, she still rules a large chunk of my life. And sometimes I feel like she hasn't learned anything at all in the decades that followed.

I've never really understood what anybody sees in me. What makes me worth the trouble of being my friend. Yeah, this is self-pity. I hate it. And I must be crazy because I'm doing this publicly. And I don't know why.

I'll probably keep adding to this post, or not, or who knows what. It's all a work in progress.

Addenda: I've still got this horrid upper respiratory crud and it's drained a lot out of me. Hence no new blog post here, but I did do one at WWAATD. "A possibly too-revealing reading pile".

Friday, June 4, 2010

When it rains it fucking pours, again

When I started typing the title of this blog post, apparently I'd used it before. Oh well, it still fits. Yesterday was a lousy day. Still have the chest cold (though it's not as bad), but had to deal with two rather distressing problems. One is that I had to cancel my debit card because it was used fraudulently and the other was that a reading series I manage has to move. Sometimes the real world sucks. Part of me wants to tear into a long rant here, but part of me just wants to hole-up and hide. Maybe sleep the day away. Don't worry, I'll be back at it, I always am.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Under the weather

hopefully back in a day or so - chest cold seems to be snotting up the brain.