When I Grow Up

So lately I’ve been thinking a lot about the fact that I’m twenty and not really a child anymore and maybe I should learn how to do some Grown Up Things.

I mean, I’m going to be in school for a billion more years. But after college, I might be in school somewhere other than New York, and my mother won’t be there to fix everything. So, you know, time to suck it up and act my age. At least sometimes.

Some of the things which fall under the category of Grown Up Things:

-Doing my own laundry
-Going to the bank; maintaining my own checking account
– Keeping my room clean and organized-ish
-Procrastinating less (this is going to be the hardest one)
-Taking more care with my appearance (including good posture)
-Maintain a schedule/planner/to do list so I don’t  forget about things
-Feeding myself

I already do a few of those – like go to the bank and use a planner – and I’m working on others – like procrastinating and keeping my room clean and being more thoughtful with my clothing choices.

Next up on the list? Laundry, which I have a great fear of.

Also? Food. I want to learn to cook. (And also to expand my food horizons and be less picky.)

Honestly I like to bake a lot better but I can’t survive entirely off cupcakes and brownies and cookies. Well, I could, but it wouldn’t be pretty. So I’m working on finding some good recipes, and practicing cooking, and stuff like that. I’ll share if I have any particularly tasty successes or  particularly spectacular failures. In baking or cooking.

I probably won’t share anything about laundry. Too boring.

Musings on Muses

Others have written before me – and very eloquently, I might add – on this subject, so I’ll keep it brief.

Firstly, it’s stupid to avoid writing because you’re “waiting for inspiration to strike” or for your muse to suddenly make everything known to you.

Writing is not magic. Unfortunately.

The truth is, if you want to get results, you have to put in the effort yourself; do the work yourself. Your muse is not going to do it for you.

Except when it does.

I have a muse – or rather, I have a subconscious. When I get stuck on something in my writing  (and I mean really stuck, not just I’ve gotten lazy and don’t want to work, but that I’m working and working and nothing is coming out right), it helps to let it go and work on something else or do something else for a little while. Sometimes it’s an hour, and sometimes its a few days, but without fail there comes a time where suddenly my “muse” comes through and it all comes together in a rush.

Now what is really happening is that my brain is still working on my problem subconsciously, and when I come back to it it’s been worked out. It’s not magic, although as a fantasy buff I wouldn’t mind if it was!

My brain likes to operate this way quite a lot of the time.

The internets are uncooperative. I am not amused.

New in the sidebar: progress bars which will, theoretically, update you (who? Is anybody out there reading this nonsense?) on my progress. But apparently the coding was not correct, so I will have to mess around some more and try to figure it out. However, because it it rather late and I’m tired, I will do that tomorrow. I am not really amused by this situation.

In other news, I love my stories. I was falling out of love with Lioness but I just reread the nuggets I wrote and there are beautiful little gems in there. Now I just have to do the not-so-fun part: organize and plan so that when I resume writing I don’t get bogged down or lost. Ditto with princess, although I’m also having the worldbuilding fail problem there…

Worldbuilding, and also my dog eats salad.

So…I’ve been feeling reinvigorated re: the princess story, but the other day I tried to do some worldbuilding and it just…did not work.

I mean, I came up with some interesting ideas. Actually, some totally amazing ideas. The problem is, they don’t fit at ALL with the “seed” or “essence” of the princess story that I see in my head. I’m feeling seriously frustrated and I don’t really know what to do.

I’m actually tempted to say forget the worldbuilding, and try to hash out some kind of plot outline in the hopes that that jogs my mind. Actually, when I think about it, that plan seems much, much more appealing. I’m beginning to suspect that I will have to do a prelim outline, see how that affects the world/what ideas that sparks, and then go back and adjust the plot if necessary.

I know that skimping on worldbuilding is extremely problematic for a number of reasons. I’m not really skimping, just…postponing. I don’t know. I’m confused.

I’m Baaaaack

Well, here we are again.

It’s been nearly a year since I posted last. This means two things:

1. I am probably talking to myself; nobody reads this anymore.
2. The blogger interface has changed again. Between this and Facebook, I think I might cry.

I will explain why I was absent for so long. The truth is, college was quite enough for me to handle last year. The blog kept getting put on the back burner until I basically forgot about it. But I had a crazy, revelatory dream the other night which was basically a scene from a story popping into my head. And that just made me want to write again.

Interestingly, that’s not the project I’m drawn to at the moment. I think it needs to percolate a bit. Unlike the princess story, which has percolated quite enough thank you and is ready to be worked on!

So I’m here, back on the blog. I can’t promise anything (for example, daily posts). I think that’s too much for me. I can aspire to, perhaps, three posts a week. They will mostly be related to what I’m writing, although I wouldn’t be surprised if some school stuff or Nutcracker stuff or life-in-general stuff creeps in there.

To my readers, if they still exist, I apologize for not letting you know when I realized the blog was going dark. If you’re still around, I’m still writing 🙂

If not, I already talk to myself quite a bit, so I suppose this isn’t that different!

P.S. Yes, I will finish Marvin. And the reading list will have a huge gap in it. Oh well…

DRAGONS. PLOT DRAGONS. Which squiggle.

I don’t have plot bunnies. I have plot dragons.

They’re infinitely more difficult to find and MUCH harder to catch – there’s that whole they might fry you to a crisp and eat you thing. Or that disembowel you with a claw and eat you raw thing, if they’re in the mood for rare.

I have SO MUCH TROUBLE with plots. I have to sort of come at them sideways or they squiggle around (yes, that’s a word). If I grab them by one part, they go all silly putty on me and squish out and then go reform a few feet away and laugh at me.

Okay, those metaphors are totally different and don’t really make any sense, but the point is there. That point being that I needed to find a new way to think about plots.

It’s all about conflict.

Well, um, yeah, you say, or actually you probably don’t because you’re very articulate and don’t stoop to the use of such words. This is obvious, you say.

Yeah, well, it took me a while. Even after reading all these wonderful blog posts and articles and other assorted pearls of wisdom it didn’t really sink in. It took one – ahem- interesting practice novel and some time to reflect before it really hit me.

Goals. Obstacles. Conflict. OH!

I’m sorry, I’m not usually this slow. Please, bear with me.

Cookies! (and Newton’s 1st law)

Oh WOW have I been bad. It’s been nearly a month since I graced my (non-existent I’m sure) audience with my presence!

To be fair, I have been trying to adjust to this whole college-living-on-my-own-HEY-THAT’S-A-LOT-OF-READING-what-I-have-an-essay-due-already? dynamic, plus NUTCRACKER HAS STARTED.

Nutcracker is my life.

But Nutcracker is for another post (Tomorrow? Maybe if I alternate nut posts with writing posts I’ll be on here more – I LOVE talking about nut). Right now I want to focus on another idea – momentum.

“Inertia is the death of creativity. You have to keep moving, keep making. So much of making art is muscle memory, keeping your routine…”

I stole this from somewhere on this website, I think, and if I didn’t go look at the website anyway cause it’s cool. I read that and thought YES. That is the crux of the problem, isn’t it? Inertia. Objects at rest tend to stay at rest. (Little mini physics lesson there)

I was doing so well with my whole 750 words thing. I was writing every day. And then, I missed a day because I went out to dinner with some family friends and didn’t get back until 1 in the morning.

The next day, I didn’t write.

I thought, it’s okay that I miss another day, I’ve already broken my streak, I can start back tomorrow.
Guess what happened the next day?

It’s hard to keep doing something, day after day, but it’s even harder to stop and then start again. It’s easy to stop doing something and then keep not doing it. What a vicious cycle…

But today, I’m BREAKING THE CYCLE!

You ask, skeptically, (or maybe you don’t, but for the sake of argument let’s say you do):

“What makes today different from any other day?”

Two reasons. One, I’ve acknowledged my problem and consciously decided to change my pattern of behavior. Two, I’m bribing myself with cookies 🙂