mslulu: (Vase Cat)
I just paid a buttload of bills today. I've not managed to completely pay off any of my debts yet, but, with the exception of one credit card, everything is current or paid ahead now. It's been a year since I could say that, so I'm feeling pretty good about it. I've got some money coming from my uncle soon, the last of my inheritance from my grandma which I need to decide what to do with. It'll be enough to pay off one of my bigger accounts, two or more of my smaller ones, or about half of my car. I guess, since I don't know when it's coming, I'll just have to figure that out when I actually get the money.

I'm thinking maybe I should take the money out of my secret PERS account as well. It's not exactly earning much in interest, and nothing's being fed into it, so it's really just sitting there. Hmm. I'll think on it, I guess.

Ah well, I'm just going to sit back now and enjoy the feeling of paying bills and still having money left over.

In other news...

I'm home again today. I've actually been writing. Nothing new, but a new start to an old tale of mine that I've been kicking around in various formats since 1986. Oddly enough, it's a fantasy setting, that up until college when I allowed my world to cross over with worlds and characters created by [livejournal.com profile] bettyp and [livejournal.com profile] gwyndolin (who don't actually read my LJ, so I don't know why I felt the need to name drop there), was pretty two dimensional. Working with other writers in my world, new characters were born, politics were developed, and it became a much more complex place. But that first story from that world, the one that the world was created for, a fairy-tale romance, still hasn't been completed. It's a very different story now. Much darker. Not so clean. But I think it's a better story, if I can get it out on paper where it belongs.

And in yet more news...

While a latecomer, I'm now officially hooked on Veronica Mars. Mind you, I've only seen the first four episodes (on rented DVD) but I've got four more to watch today, and more coming to me when I send these discs back. The problem with coming late to a series that's currently on the air, however, is that I'll never be able to catch up until after it's cancelled. I don't want to jump into current episodes when I'm so far behind. I won't know what happened between where I am and where the current season is, and I'll spoil some of the intrigue for myself if I do try to watch it.

Argh.
mslulu: (Default)
I can't remember the last time I actually wrote something. Anything.

All my characters who I love dearly are hanging in an indefinite limbo.

I don't like this. I need to write.
mslulu: (Lone Penguin)
Sure enough, when I haven't got the time to sit and write, a new idea forms. Just a single thought. One line, bouncing around in my head, teasing me, daring me to follow it and see where it leads. I don't have the time to pursue it fully right now, but it seems to be headed down a path that I haven't taken before, leading away from my usual styles and themes.

Hmm. Maybe I can convince it to hang out until NaNoWriMo when, time or not, I'll need to be chasing an idea until I find the story in it anyway.
mslulu: (Baby Daniel)
My head's interfering with concentration on the task at hand again. But at least there's a relatively legitimate reason.

There's a new story poking through in my brain, trying to take form enough to earn the right to be put on paper. This is never a bad thing. It's been some years since I've really had a new idea. But on the other hand, I've spent the last 3 months working on trying to get an old story put together enough to finish. If I let the new one distract me enough, I could find myself abandoning what has been my primary project for gods know how long.

To make matters worse, I watched Labyrinth again last night, which served as the inspiration for another of my older projects. Now that idea's awake again, poking at me, demanding my attention, wanting to be refined, rewritten, and finished.

Crap, crap, crap, crap, crap.

So, I don't know if I should ignore the new ideas and concentrate my attention on the project at hand, which is currently somewhere around the 40,000 word point and still going strong, or if I should try to split my attention between the two or three of them and try to get the new one developed and clean up and revive the old one while still plugging away at the other.

I need to buy some new discipline. The stuff I have just isn't enough to handle this kind of noise.
mslulu: (Default)
Just spent my last break trying to determine what size population of vampires would be reasonable/believeable in the Bay Area, based on county homicide, assault, and missing persons statistics.
mslulu: (Trixie-Painting)
I lay awake at night, unable to sleep because of all the things running around in there, wanting to be let out, but I shove them aside and tell them they have to wait until later because I can't write now, I have to sleep.

So later comes, and the thoughts hide. Oh, they're still there, but in the light of day, they don't want to come out and expose themselves to the dangers of being seen, known, perhaps understood, perhaps shot down as invalid, needy and selfish.

So, they stay in my head, only to start nagging me again as soon as the sun goes down.

Revelations

Jan. 3rd, 2004 11:38 pm
mslulu: (Default)
So, I'm sitting here, nearly one hundred pages into the third book of the Dark Tower series, re-reading something that I remembered loving the first time through, and loving it just as much the second time. A few things have occured to me though, some good, some not so much.

First, the good. In the last two weeks, I've plowed through two novels and then some. My passion for reading is not dead. I think I've just been trying to read the wrong things. Fuck that. So what if I don't read the stuff everyone else I know is always talking about? If I can't get into it, it's just because that particular author or style doesn't hook me. The fact that I've never read Anne McCaffrey or Frank Herbert or Terry Goodkind (or 90% of the other names that usually come up in group conversation) is not a mark against my intellectual capacity. It just means that while I'm too different from the mainstream world to really fit in to a social circle there, I'm also very different from the out-of-the-norm/geek friends that I have. Face it, I'm freaky enough to send the normals running in terror, but when it really comes down to it, I'll take the Chick Flick and the Stephen King novel over the Sci-Fi Flick and the Fantasy novel any day. And yes, King does tend to be a hack. But also, amidst a great deal of the crap that he churns out, there are some gems that are some of the best stories I've ever read. Thinking about it now, I remember the last time I got this into a book was while listening to Black House on audio while I was still working at E-Trade. I don't know if I consider King to be my favorite author, but he's definitely my most read. Up until the late 90's, I'd read everything he'd written except for Salem's Lot. Add a little Anne Rice and John Irving to the mix, and you've got half of my library right there.

What this also means, is that King is a big-ass influence on me as a writer. I find it fascinating when I read his words about the writing process and I realize how I tend to take a similar approach to the idea as it grows into a story and develops into something solid. Not that I ever actually sat down an patterned my techniques after his; it just happens that our minds both work in that "dive in head first and see where you end up" kind of way.

So, the not so great thing that came to me tonight was when I started to look for the inspiration to create my own tales while reading. This is usually what I do when I'm in a slump. I watch a great movie, or a television show with excellent writing (Sports Night, for example) or I read a wonderful book. It gets my juices flowing and gets my mind creating again. The problem today came when I realized just how much of my Dragon world is inspired by The Dark Tower world. Not so much in the way that I've been copying it, although I will admit to borrowing a few ideas for it, but in that what I want for that world is something as real and fascinating as the world in which Roland Deschain lives. A place that has many of the same characteristics of our world, but is still different enough to feel alien. A place that has many secrets and mysteries, peeking through the fabric just enough to tease the reader's curiousity, dragging them along, telling them everything and nothing all at the same time. I don't have that. I don't know how to get that. I have a two dimensional world that doesn't really have any character of its own and doesn't really have any reason to be in the state it's in now. I need to take some serious time and thought to devote to world building. Guess what I suck at? Perhaps this is why I write primarily in our world, or in our world with only a few variances.

So, here I am, wide awake, feeling both enthralled and discouraged by the words I read on the pages before me. Not sure if sleep will help or hurt. Good thing it's the weekend.
mslulu: (Tattoo)
John Hughes lied to me. How many other children of the eighties out there spent their teen years believing in the Gospel of Hughes? And how many felt betrayed when graduation came and the promised love had never materialized?

I started my high school career with Sixteen Candles. I knew that the guy I had the secret crush on would eventually realize I was there; I just had to go to the right dance to start the wheels in motion.

By sophomore year, it was The Breakfast Club. I was the loner, the outsider, the freak. But it was okay, because the cute jock was going to kiss me one day and tell me I was pretty.

Junior year was all about Pretty in Pink. I was living alone with my dad then, and the Great and Powerful Hughes promised me that if I pinched pennies and made my own clothes, Andrew McCarthy would soon start stalking me.

And finally, Senior year brought Some Kind of Wonderful and it's assurances that my best friend would see the light and realize that he actually loved me and not the pretty girl he was chasing all year.

But, alas, the real world is nothing like Shermer, Illinois. I never had that great high school romance. The words of Hughes were just empty promises.

But somewhere along the way, lost in these wonderful fictions, my own "what-if" button got pushed. My imagination was tickled and I, for the first time, put pencil to paper and began to write. My first attempts were dreadful, unoriginal, Hughes-like tales of love and sex amongst foul-mouthed high-school students. But I never stopped. I'm still writing seventeen years later. Admittedly, a lot of what fills the box of notebooks and loose-leaf paper in my closet is pure, derivative crap, but I know there are at least a few original, creative, well written ideas in there, too. I love that I can sit down and create people and places and situations and give them life with just a pen.

And I've got John Hughes to thank for that.
mslulu: (Default)
As some of you may have noticed, I'm writing. I've got a new idea and I'm attempting to make something of it. As some of you may not know, I've been writing for 16 years and have maybe 3 completed projects to show for it, and I'm very protective of my work. Few people have actually been allowed the privilege of reading my fiction.

What does that leave me with? Boxes full of incomplete stories that nobody will ever see but me.

So, I'm trying something new with the first new idea that I've had in years and am actually kind of excited about. I'm putting it out there as it happens, for my friends to see. I welcome comments, criticisms (be gentle... I'm tender), suggestions, encouragement (many thanks to Kathy who greeted me at work with "more story more story"). If something doesn't work for you, tell me why. If you like what you're reading, I'd love to hear it. Suggestions/criticism may not appear to be taken, but I tend to bounce them around and they often lead to other ideas. (for example, the dragon has been named. i didn't use any of the names offered, but because of them, i thought of the name i did use, and there will be other dragons to name, so i may still need that list in the future.)

I am locking the entries from here on out, so you have to be logged in as one of my friends to read it. (Protective measure... I've had my sociology thesis plagiarized - amazing what people will steal.)

Oh and if anyone has an idea for a working title so my headings can be something more interesting than #1, #2, etc... throw it at me. Kathy, I'm already counting that you've suggested Alderon, to save you the trouble.

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