Here’s a Drabble About Why I Write….and Tangents!

Sometimes I am amazed by the things that come out of my brain. Whenever someone asks me “How do you think of what to write?” I always retort with “It never shuts off.” I’m of the volition that I don’t do or write anything spectacular. I’m certainly not the next Steinbeck or Hemingway. I’ll never write the so-called Great American Novel. While I enjoy reading classic literature and certain veins of LitFic, I can’t stand to write it. It bores me. I don’t have fun with it, and I don’t like to write anything I’m not having fun doing in some respect.

 

I carry with me a notebook or index cards and multitudes of pens at all times because I don’t want to get stuck at a red light and suddenly get an awesome idea for a scene and have no way to record it. (I used to carry a tape recorder around with me but i got tired of listening to my own voice talk back to me later). I’ve looked back at my old scribblings and I wonder where in the hell I came up with some of the stuff.

 
“Purple haired sewer mole that eats souls and it’s only weakness is purified water?!”

 
So I’ve put my other nearly finished projects aside because I am going through the final (at least I really hope so) rewrite of my novel. This little baby has been through five, yes FIVE, different versions. After writing and editing each one, I’ve sent it out and it’s not gotten any bites. So, after each round of no responses and polite “you write well but the story doesn’t draw me in”s, I sat down and read it and said “What am I doing wrong?” The answer each time was to do a complete overhaul.

 

 

It started out as something very different from what it’s become. And I can’t say that I’m unhappy about that. When I started writing this (four years ago, and yes I have written other things since, I usually put this away for about 8 months before going back to it) I was kind of happy with it. Then moving to a little happier. Now I’m at the point where I think I have the entire world created in such a way that should this ever see the light of day as the series I intend it to, I can continue it infinitely. I was limiting myself with older versions, saying it was going to be a three-part series. But the world and the characters have so many stories and lives to share that I just can’t limit myself.

 
The point of this whole drabble is that, yes I’ve gotten rejections and yes I’ve written sub par material and thought it was good until someone slapped me on the back of the head and said “Not engaging enough”, but I’m really not deterred. Writing is my life passion, and I can’t remember a time in my life when I wasn’t writing. If I go a day without writing, even if it’s a measly 500 words, I feel sick and like I have wasted the day. I know the process once someone says “yes I’ll represent you” isn’t an easy one. It’s like any other job I suppose, there will be times I’m sure I’ll want to pull my hair out but with something I love this much I don’t see myself falling into my typical “after three years let’s try something new!” because….with writing I can try something new with each story.

 
It boils down to why I write. Some people act because they enjoy going into different lives and characters, and for the same reason I enjoy writing. I can delve myself into a world that doesn’t exist and shape it to my own desires and whims. I love being able to say “No, I don’t want to follow the laws of physics today.” and then subsequently bastardizing all science has taught us about the world. I enjoy making characters come to life for others, to bring others to that world of make-believe that my favorite authors bring me into. There’s something so rewarding (even when it’s just a friend, family, checkout clerk, insurance agent…) when someone reads it and says “more please?”. It makes me want to continue this arduous process of write, edit, rewrite.

 
Over the course of actually writing this novel, I’ve learned a lot about crafting a story. My biggest problem was always dialogue. I could write descriptions of Tolkien-esque length and create these worlds but the characters would be so fucking bland it made me crazy. So I studied. I started listening to people more, I had the conversations in my book with myself so they would sound more believable. I read up more on creating believable, rounded characters. I gave them each a fifteen page back story, I made them real. And that seems to have made the difference in my eyes at least.

 
I’m no expert, and I’m hardly a person to give advice but I’m going to. Don’t be egotistical. It doesn’t help the craft at all. We all have faults, we all write shit sometimes, and every last one of us makes mistakes in our writing. Letting other people read my writing has been invaluable for unbiased input. Also, choose people who aren’t going to praise your work and give you no constructive criticism. I love constructive criticism. BRING IT ON. I want to know what’s not working so I can fix it and make it shiny. If you can’t take constructive criticism then you can never grow. So grow, create, go out and write the shit out of something. Also, include talking kittens.

 

 
NOTE: Constructive criticism is very, very different from “You suck. I h8 u an everythin’ u write cuz i have no lyfe an like 2 troll.” People, honestly…..oh and when people do that to published authors I like? I want to grab them by the shoulders and stare deep into their eyes and say “You don’t even use proper english who are you to judge?! DO YOU EVEN READ?! Huh?! Do you? Do you?!!?!?” But I restrain myself. I simply shake my head, sigh and move on to more constructive reviews. The internet is full of grown four-year olds aching for attention, even the negative kind, and I will not be party to their antics. They can kick and scream in the corner for all I care.

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The Six Best Movies….EVER

So, a while ago I gave you guys the six worst movies, and now I’m giving you the six best. They’re the best in my eyes for different reasons. Either they are beautiful art wise, disturbing on a level I’m sure wome of you people will understand, scare the ever loving shit out of me or are just so ridiculous that they find a place in my heart. Sure, there are more than this….and someday I may tell you about others I love but for now these will have to do. And I hope you enjoy them as much as I did. I tried not to spoil too much….but I think I may have in one or two in my over excitement. Whatever the case….onward and upward! (These are in no particular order)

The Tunnel: “Is he eating-oh god that’s his HEAD!” “WHAT LANGUAGE IS THAT ::denegerate into hysterical sobs and incomprehensible whimpers::” That was pretty much my reaction. I don’t get scared easily by movies and this one did. It’s a low budget Australian horror flick that my friend tipped me on. I saw it online when the makers were running it free. I loved it so much I just ordered the DVD now that it’s out. This is a movie about people who go into a tunnel and find something completely terrifying. I don’t like spoilers but I will say that you never get a good look at the thing and it’s creepy and it EATS PEOPLE’S HEADS ya’ll. It’s like Paula Deen for the subterranean community. “Oh, what goes best with sewer water? Why reporter brain of course…nom nom nom”. Even talking about this movie makes me want to cry and curl up in a ball. If it scares me….it’s AWESOME. So…go watch it. With a light on, and don’t go underground for at least a month after viewing. This just goes to further prove that Australia is home to all the deadliest things EVER. Even the fake ones.

 
Death Proof: Who doesn’t love a good Tarantino flick? Who doesn’t love muscle cars? Who doesn’t love hot girls who know muscle cars IN a Tarantino flick? Mix them together and it’s like gearhead girl heaven! Tarantino’s masterful grasp of dialogue and just all around ass kicking is displayed. As usual he makes a cameo, and his cast is AWESOME. We have, Tracy Thoms, Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Zoe MOTHAH-FUCKIN Bell (I added the middle name for emphasis on her awesome), Kurt Russel, Rose McGowan and some other chicks like Vanessa Ferlito and the other two who get killed. Death, revenge and three girls kickin’ Kurt Russel’s behind and you have the best movie ever. Best modern movie I should say. Also, did I mention that Zoe Bell is in it? Who doesn’t love her? Oh…you don’t? Well then get out of here and give me back my damn cookies damnit.

 
Yellow Brick Road: Another film that terrified the ever loving crap out of me. Also reccomended by the same friend who reccomneded the tunnel. Set in the NH wilderness (aisde: I fucking live in NH….more on how this is relevant soon) a documentary team goes to investigate why a town in the days of old got up, walked up a wooded path and most were never seen again. The ones that were seen again were seen torn limb from limb. WHY WOULD YOU EVEN?! Hear a story like that, smart people stay away. Not run into the unknown. IDEK. Getting a little excited because I can still hear the trees playing music in my sleep. Basically shit goes down and the crew has every bad thing ever that could possibly happen and go wrong….happen and go wrong. The trees start playing music, people go crazy and some guy rips some chick’s leg off. Rips it off with his bare fucking hands. “Oh wow Gen this is intense so far…what is he- OMFG OMFG THAT’S HER LEG GODDAMNIT! ::more sobbing::” I made the mistake of watching this alone. When everyone had gone away for a weekend. At night. Our house is surrounded by fucking trees. The windows are open with no coverings and it’s so quiet that it’s eerie (growing up in jersey when you don’t hear sirens every five seconds that’s quiet) and I watch this. I was scared enough to sleep with the lights on. Don’t think I’m easily scared, because I’m really not….but when people start ripping legs because the trees are playing music I draw the line…..

 

The Cook, The Thief, His Wife and Her Lover: It’s a long title but trust me, this movie is worth it’s weight in gold. A british film from the 80s starring the gorgeous Dame Helen Mirren, Michael Gambon and Tim roth. It’s brilliantly shot and the plot, a woman who falls in love with another man only to have her crazy bathsit husband go bezerk on her and then shit hits the fan (i can’t tell you everything because really you need to watch it for the full effect), is so well done that this movie will forever remain with you. A friend told me about it a few years ago and I had seen some clips on youtube because it was, up until recently when netflix put it online for streaming (Thank you Netflix!!), impossible to find. I watched it for the first time about two months ago and it soared into my top movie list. It’s just so brilliant, and touching and “WTFOMG?!” inducing. So…I highly suggest you all go watch this movie and right now.

 

Meet the Feebles: It’s disgusting. It’s graphic. It’s disturbing. And it’s puppets. Animal puppets. There’s not much else that can be said about this early Peter Jackson film that really does it justice. Oh, there’s a chorus number called “Sodomy” if that gives you any idea. There’s diseased rabbit, a cute….hedgehog looking thing and a rat that wants to have carnal relations with a dog. This movie is quite possibly the worst in history, which makes it the best. And it’s Peter Jackson (….i love early Peter Jackson. then he did King Kong and my heart broke). And a Hippo gone crazy kills almost everyone. What else is there to say but WATCH IT. For the love of all that is holy WATCH IT. Unless you have a weak stomach and/or constitution. Then avoid this like the plague.

 
Dead Alive: Everyone says it. Hell I’m sure even emo hipsters from myspace are saying it now. I won’t go into the fact that I first saw this in high school, and that at that time no one knew what the hell it was (no one I knew anyway) and how much I hate people who suddenly are like “Oh MAN I’ve loved that movie for like three years!” and then I facepalm, sigh heavily and want to murder someone. RIGHT. Anyway, another gem from old school P.J. that just makes my heart go pitter pitter. Far less disgusting in nature than Meet the Feebles, dead alive focuses on….well…Zombies. But a completely different Zombie origin story is found in this movie, and I won’t say anything because you have to see it. This is a highly quotable movie with lines like “Your mother ate my dog!” and “I kick ass for the lord!” I reccomend this to anyone who hasn’t seen it yet because….it’s gory, its funny and it’s gross but not TOO gross. Check out the lawnmower scene and zombie baby….oh yeah.

Project of Epic Proportions….maybe.

It may or may not be epic. In fact it’s really not all that much…but hey it’s an interesting project and I’m trying my hand at creativity that doesn’t involve leather, feathers and beads…and I just realized how WRONG that sounds. (In my spare time I make dream catchers. It’s a nice stress reliever.)

 

So I’m moving into my apartment next week, and the living/bed room area are all one giant space. Now, while I personally don’t really give a damn I’m fairly certain people visiting don’t want to see my bed while watching tv.  So in an effort to create a separate space and give a little pizazz to the tiny apartment I will be calling home for the next year, I decided I was going to get a shoji screen.  The only problem is they are EXPENSIVE. But I was going to buckle down, it would be an investment in the long run and I figured hey, at some point I could mutilate it with zombie paraphenalia.

 

Then my aunt and uncle say to me yesterday, “HEY! We have this awesome 3 panel screen that we don’t need anymore. It was originally for pictures and some of the glass is missing but it’s yours if you want it.”  My packrat heart went all a crazy. I figured I could pick up some same size frames at the dollar store and replace the glass and backing and voila….working screen.  No need to spend the money I got from selling my kidney on ebay to buy one! I can save that for the ferrari….or the lambourghini….in my mind.

 

So today, I’m driving to Starbucks for my rocketfuel and I pass by michael’s. All of a sudden, while singing along to Half Jack and sipping my coffee with not one, not two, not three but FOUR shots of espresso….I think “I’m going to turn that screen into something of Steampunk awesome.” And then my twitchy Hammy-resembling brain went into overdrive. I went into Michaels and bought All the Things Ever and then promptly drove home like a giddy goose because the cashier at Michael’s asked what I was going to make and I told her and she got as excited as I was (the joys of connectivity in nerdiness).

 

I’m a fan of antiques, and industrial looking stuff. I love old nautical, old industrial and old..everything. So I figured this was going to be a perfect awesome addition to my veritable closet (all joking aside it’s a cute little space) and a project for me to tell my imaginary friends (that would be you guys reading this) about.   And because i generally don’t do stuff like this, I’m rather proud of just the idea of it.  So, I painted it today. Letting it dry and then tomorrow night I’m going to sand and touch it up a bit because I want it to look old and gritty. I may add some embellishments like writing or something but…yeah.

 

Then over the course of this week, there will be all sorts of steps. Aging pictures with tea, aging canvas fabric with tea..trying NOT to glue my fingers together while I Gorilla glue things onto the wood and then finally awesomeness of the finished product.  Though, this may end up NOT getting done until next week because I have a ton of things to do for work, moving to coordinate and possibly a story to write.  Fear not, as the process continues there will be pictures, witty asides and probably cursing and crying as I try to unglue my appendages from one another.

 

NOTE: I was going to put the before and after’s of the paint job up now but I just realized I took the pics without a memory card in my camera and I can’t find the USB cord to upload them. So, you’ll get them in the next update. SIGH.