This is sort of an all-encompassing post for a number of the things I am involved with this month. I’ll try to address them in some sort of order, but as I was sick as hell all weekend long (and still recovering) the path my damaged neurons attempt to take may make no sense whatsoever. Alternatively, it may only make sense to David Lynch, hard core fans of his movies, or those who have recently gone off of their medications. Understand there will be some overlap with those groups.
My real goal here was to write every day. In that aspect I stumbled. I caught the zombie death flu. You know the one, it’s the variant where once your sinuses finally start clearing you’ll sneeze out the body mass of a young adult lemur. It makes for fun around the office. On the bright side, nobody bothers you once you make it back to the office. I’m surprised they haven’t put up police line tape across my office door.
Silver Lining – The silver lining here is the illness allowed me the opportunity to take a break during that part of the book. We’re all familiar with that part of the book. It’s the one where you start to slow down and look at everything you’re regurgitating up onto the virtual page for the bile-soaked awfulness it is. You question why you started this. You question taking English as a major twenty five damned years ago. Most of all, you question including naughty scenes in your book when you are writing a first person point of view and your main character is a 20-something year old LA hotel heiress. Oh yeah, that’s going to go over well – like Velcro seams in a hot air balloon.
My break allowed me to get that out of my system and realize this is the first draft of my WIP. Those blue scenes don’t have to make the final cut. They can be replaced with scenes I skimmed past or didn’t dedicate enough prose to. Or I can ask one of the plethora of erotica authors I know to look at the naughty bits and tell me what I’m doing wrong there. End result is reminding myself that all first drafts suck. Shakespeare probably looked at that first draft of Romeo and Juliet and said, “Verily the prose bids one the visage of a pile of dung behind the squires horse in a knight’s parade.” Or something like that, it has been a while.
This is pretty well covered in the ROW80 section. I am now behind in my word count. At the same time I am looking at a long weekend with plenty of writing time. My amount of write-ins has decreased due to being sick and not sleeping through any night… ever. Seriously I am sleeping less now than I did as a newborn. How is that even possible? Then again, with the holiday weekend upon us and me totally not being a Black Friday shopper the coffee shops will be mine!
For some reason this year is feeling a lot more isolated that it has in previous years. Less people are making it to the write-ins, most people have their favorite places to go to and stick to them, and less people are traveling outside of their comfort zone to engage other writers. Hell, I met up with one at a book signing and for all I know that could be the only reason he made it out to any at all. Of course I overslept and didn’t make it to Java Cat this morning, so who knows if he’ll keep coming out.
Considering the solitary life of the author, the settling in of a favorite location for writing and isolation from outside influences makes sense. This just shows that I am an oddity among the eccentrics – I use November to get out there and find new writing spots and meet other new authors in the area. Even among my people I am strange.
So as if I wasn’t busy enough I got involved with the world’s largest scavenger hunt. For the record I blame Megan Hart – she talked me into it. Which is to say she posted a tweet saying she was doing it and people should join her so they can have a set team. Ironically while I was placed on a team with a number of her friends, Megan isn’t on my team. Apparently they put a bunch of her friends on one team together and her on another.
This involves going out and getting photos or video of weird stuff. What kind of weird stuff, you say? Well, like getting a member of the cast of Supernatural, Vampire Diaries and a couple other shows to take a photo wearing a Justin Beiber shirt. My personal favorite is getting an email from Jared Padalecki stating, “I am Misha’s bitch.” While I don’t know how I would obtain that, a tweet and a small wait later produced this…
Now aside to the obvious awesomeness of this image, allow me to explain something for those of you not as familiar with Supernatural as I. Yes, this is Amber Benson who played Tara on Buffy the Vampire Slayer. No, Buffy wasn’t one of the shows listed in the challenge. However, in an odd juxtaposition she did play a vampire in two episodes of Supernatural. And yes, her character was one of the few vampires in that universe that was not hunting down, killing and eating people. The closest thing to Angel and Spike the show has seen.
Furthermore, Amber Benson is a published author as well as an actor, director, etc. That image up there, that secures her as one of my favorite contemporary authors. Should you feel moved to help me in showing your appreciation (and are a reader of urban fantasy) go forth and purchase Death’s Daughter or any of the subsequent books in the Calliope Reaper-Jones series. You can even find if you search hard enough a video of her and Pat Rothfuss doing a dramatic reading from one of the books. The video and story behind it are hilarious and well worth the effort.
The Gratitude Experiment
One of my author friends has been doing a gratitude experiment this month. Each day she has been posting what she is grateful or thankful for. I decided to pick it up halfway through the month and run with it. Since then I have noticed how many of those include coffee, caffeine in general, and Advil Liquigels. This probably says quite a bit about me. Today is different though. Today is a bit more thoughtful.
Yesterday I heard through another author I am following on Twitter about the passing of Anne McCaffery. As a young reader I found her books hard to get into. I didn’t learn to appreciate them until later. That said, her writing and life is inspiring. There is no doubt in my mind that the literary world was struck a tremendous blow yesterday. This led me to what I am grateful for today.
Today I am grateful for those published and established authors that have inspired me and made me feel like I made the right choice in working on my writing the last couple of years. My treatment has run the gambit of a mentor/student situation, a novice/adviser scenario, to some new friends in my chosen field. My first dedicated writing convention I was made to feel like a person trying to break into the business and not so much of a fanboy. When you come from a life of gaming, anything that limits the social awkwardness is a blessing. I will never be able to return the gift these fine people have given me, but some day I hope to be in a position where I can pass the gift on to the next person making it to their first writing convention.
For those of you more familiar with me, the above is probably the sappiest thing you have seen from me in a long time (if not ever). Allow me to put it back into perspective for you. People who were treating me like friends were generally picking on me and engaging in playful banter back and forth. Yes, sitting around and busting each others balls is totally what friends do. You say dysfunctional, I say home. 😉
If you are more concerned with specifics, look at my lists of favorite titles. Many of them correlate to the people I feel a stronger kinship towards. Or just ask. Y’all know how much I hate to shoot the shit.
With Thanksgiving coming up, what are you most thankful for?