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bear by san

March 2017

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writing plot octopus

it was rainin' in heaven when you went down

1500 words on Seven for a Secret today. I pause now to consider the Ebil Antagonist, and ways to make him more interesting than merely Ebil.

I'm still having a hard time believing that I'm able to just sit down on work on things again, without  every word being a painful uphill battle. I suspect I could still use some time off to recover from the Great Neurochemical Upheaval of 2008, and I'm still kind of feeling uninspired and like there's a lot of toil involved in getting the words out and not a lot of joy and inspiration, but right now that's okay and I'll take it. This is normal writing-related hard work, and I'm just fine with that. I mean, it's not the most fun I've ever had, and I'm not in love wth every glowing semicolon as I lay it perfect on the page. But it doesn't always have to be on fire.

And the fact of the matter is, when you go back and revise it, you can't tell. You can't tell (with rare exceptions) which pages came on a rush of inspiration, which you put together with consideration and craftsmanship, which ones you fought every slogging inch of the way.

Right now, I am content just to not be pushing through crisis after crisis, while writing things that I am more or less happy with.

It'll do for now. It'll do.



And because I am reading books about cities and faeries, it seems....

Book Report #98: Delia Sherman, The Magic Mirror of the Mermaid Queen (draft)

Oh, you are so jealous of me.


Book Report #99: Marie Brennan, Midnight Never Come

Because 2008 is the year of the  Volcano Asteroid Impact Alarmingly Well-Researched Elizabethan Faerie Novel. And because swan_tower rocks, she sent me a copy of Midnight Never Come so I could enjoy it, now that Ink & Steel is safely on the way to the newstands. (We really went out of our way to keep from knowing too much about what the other one was doing, and I am pleased to note that while there are points of congruence, we managed to independently pick the alternative "London Will Never Fall So Long As X Condition Pertains" legends. Go team us.

These are not kinder, gentler faeries. Really they're not.

Comments

Have you thought of giving Ebil Antagonist a Bluetooth earpiece (it worked so well in Serenity)?

*Running away cackling evilly ebilly*
Oh, you are so jealous of me.

It's twue.
Book Report #98: Delia Sherman, The Magic Mirror of the Mermaid Queen (draft)

Oh, you are so jealous of me.


Yes, I am.
Book Report #98: Delia Sherman, The Magic Mirror of the Mermaid Queen (draft)

Oh, you are so jealous of me.


I am. I so am.
Auctorial-Stim!

The new neurochemically enhancing implants made for authors!

Never another day of ennui again!
These are not kinder, gentler faeries. Really they're not.

Best kind!
Amen to that.
"And the fact of the matter is, when you go back and revise it, you can't tell. You can't tell (with rare exceptions) which pages came on a rush of inspiration, which you put together with consideration and craftsmanship, which ones you fought every slogging inch of the way."

That's because it's still you, and you are pretty fucking good at what you do. You know, for being a non-me entity, and all.
Thank you!
I have been thinking of two Russian stories.

A) A Russian woman told a friend of mine that Russians are freer than Americans, because they don't give a shit what other people think, they just do stuff, good or bad, Nichevo. She said Americans act like they are all in the movies, always have cameras pointed at them all the time.

B) a teacher of Russian told me once that Russian has no concept of "identity' it is just a given, not something to angst about. He said Hamlet's soliloquy in Russian would be, "Urrghg, Fuckit, i could die, Is Nature."

You are you, you do things. Argghg, fuckit, is nature.

I may have too much of this, the guy i visited in the hospital last night, who taught me to make guitars is a pure bred hillbilly, and he has even more of it than me.

We do shit. It's all real easy, perhaps too easy, but there you go.

I am glad you figured out what was bothering you.

And i don't know why i am babbling about this, but it is on my mind, and i am claiming privileged character status, being an old fart, and all.

And Leonard Pitts has a similar column today, but he misses the point, i think
I think it depends a lot on learning style. Mine is really intellectual--I have to do something, understand it, internalize it, and move on the next thing. Bottom-up, but with a heavy processing component. I know people who just learn stuff by doing it, but that never seems to work for me. And I know people who learn top-down, theory first, and for me that just bounces off.
I'm not prescribing, I'm describing. Perhaps I'm a little too reflective, dude in the hospital is about 5 months older than me, had triple bypass.

and all this Russian stuff is a severe attack of synchronicity. The three conversations i have had this week with anybody but Teresa have all been this identity stuff.

It must mean something, but i don't know what, or to who(m)

And what ever you do, it's working. Just don't look down ;-)
a teacher of Russian told me once that Russian has no concept of "identity' it is just a given, not something to angst about. He said Hamlet's soliloquy in Russian would be, "Urrghg, Fuckit, i could die, Is Nature."

You are you, you do things. Argghg, fuckit, is nature.


Interesting. I watched a documentary about Russian literature a while ago and one of the interviewees said, "English writers are great ironists. You would never get an English writer talking about the soul, certainly not in the way that a Russian writer does."

So I think the idea of 'identity' is there, but in a different way. Not perceived in the same way and certainly not intellectualised.

I think that's what I mean, anyway. Ack. Shutting up, now.

*Edited to get rid of italics throughout. ::headdesk::

Edited at 2008-05-11 09:12 am (UTC)
yes i think that's what the teacher meant too.. Accepted, not intellectualized. Thanks. i always wanted a reality check on that.

My siblings and i are only half Ukrainian but it shows. And the Appalachian folks i live with are even worse, or better.

Their Angst seems to be outer directed, rather than inward. Now i wonder if that is not a product of poverty.

And to the extent that American Culture is based on New York City (dare i say Jewish?)intellectualism, which is thoroughly introspective, we arrive at a dichotomy, where, for example Blues or "Roots" music effects a powerful draw on the intellectual elite, while the actual creators of that music are kept at arm's length.

I must clearly state that i mean no offense to any one. But this dichotomy is a major theme in my most recent book. I should have expressed it more clearly there.

Live and learn. At least i know why i am too dumb to read "The New Yorker"

Thanks. i always wanted a reality check on that.

You're welcome. It's a rare day that I can give someone a reality check ;-)

Their Angst seems to be outer directed, rather than inward. Now i wonder if that is not a product of poverty.

I think that's quite possible. Affluence (or relative affluence) gets education and education gives you different tools for expression. Then you start thinking about what you want to express and - even more importantly in terms of introspection/angst or whatever - why.

I express myself quite differently from the way my parents did and entirely differently from the way my grandparents did, but I still live within a few miles of where they lived. It's not just a generational thing. My education was very different and I strayed a few miles further than they did, for a while.

And I get what you mean about blues music. Well, I hope I do.

I get the same feeling when I visit and read rave reviews about the Magna centre and similar places here in the UK. The industrial past is suddenly fascinating, but it was very threatening in many ways when it was thriving - noisy and dirty and dangerous. And terribly working class. Few of the visitors, I think, would have wanted to visit. I would have liked to visit, but I certainly wouldn't have wanted to work in a real steel works.

God, this is turning into an essay. Sorry for hijacking the thread.

I dont think anybody else is commenting. Yes blues.. My book is called "How the Hippies Ruin't Hillbilly Music" so it would not be familiar to somebody in the UK. But the blues kids, Jagger and Clapton and Page, and all did the same thing, once removed. And had rather more success with it than the String Band people.

Researching for a book on White Blues guys, i was impressed with how (in American terms) deprived the Post-War Brit kids were.

Bill Wyman says he never had indoor plumbing until after the Stones American tour, and i suspect that the memories of the Blitz morphed into Heavy Metal music.

I was most impressed culturally speaking with the rockers mentioning the end of "Sweets Rationing" as a major memory of their early teen years.
My book is called "How the Hippies Ruin't Hillbilly Music" so it would not be familiar to somebody in the UK.

What a fantastic title! I would certainly have read that.

Researching for a book on White Blues guys, i was impressed with how (in American terms) deprived the Post-War Brit kids were.

It's strange, because when I talk – especially online – I feel sort of between generations, very conscious of the changes. My dad's grandparents lived in Sheffield and he had vivid memories of walking with his mother during the Blitz. (Her reasoning for not going into the shelters? "Well, I had to get to my mother's, didn't I?")

My dad's parents had a house with a bathroom upstairs, but it was tiny and you had to go through his parents' bedroom to get to it. So their main toilet was outside and if her daughter wanted to 'go' after bedtime, she had to use a chamberpot.

My mom's parents had a bathroom inside, where everyone could get to it – downstairs, off the kitchen. Both lots of grandparents were still living in the same houses - with NO internal changes - until the late '70s.

We lived with them until I was four. I still remember my grandfather bringing home rabbits, gutting and skinning them to make rabbit and cowheel stew. It sounds like a different world, medieval.

Oh – here I go again. It's getting like 'All Our Yesterdays'. I think I'm going to have to blog the rest. Later, after I've got today's words *g*
You keep writing. Uphill battle or no - there are times when it's just going to be that way, and is for everybody. It's so, SO good to hear that you are indeed slogging through.