Friday, April 15, 2005

New Home is Official

This here blog is now going to be on Livejournal. Point yer browsers to:


If ya linked me up, please update your link. Thanks!

The first entry on Livejournal is up and Oh So Very Interesting. Really. Honest.

This blogger page will remain open as an archive, so you can read all your favorite posts again and again and use denying it, you all do it.

Wednesday, April 13, 2005

Strang Conversations Overheard at Albertson's

Had to get cat food after work. Very tired. It's possible, really, that I hallucinated these conversations. But I don't think so.

First conversation, overheard while waiting in the Express Checkout:

First Man: I just don't understand why God has kept me alive in this World of Sin.
Second Man: Hell, if it hadn't been for sin I would've commited suicide a long time ago.

Second conversation, overheard while unlocking my bike after leaving store:

First man: Cuz, you know, it's like the fucking Man, man, and I was like involved in this shit, all revolution and anti-Man, because fuck it, the Man is the Man, you know?
Second man: Hell yeah, fuck the man, because you just gotta stand up and say fuck you, man.

I think you will admit the first conversation is, frankly, brilliant.

All this after, mind you, I got treated to a nice but slightly bizarre man at the bike racks when I arrived at the store who kept talking about how dangerous it apparently can be for us bikers, and how his ticket could be punched like *snap* THIS, any second, just like that, number up. Hell, he might get hit by a truck on the way home just like *snap* that.

Was it a full moon at Albertson's? Does it maybe have its own moon cycle?

Sleepless, Brainless

Okay. I desperately want to be asleep guessed it. Hi. I'll be your insomniac for the evening.

Writing. Yeah. It didn't do much tonight. Started trying to force things, got in that funk...even a quick and much appreciated peptalk from Junli didn't quite get the words flowing again. One decent scene. That's something. But of those nights. That stupid voice...

I so want a draft of this story done. I want it out in the world a bit. There's other stories beckoning, after all. Another hint of one that came from the odd dreams last night, and got a brief scribble in the Book today, very rough:

The stone people sit upon the mountain, gazing out over the valley that is the world. So they have sat since memory had its beginning, never moving. Dirt has piled around their feet, and grass and brush; the wind and rain and time have carved wrinkles and tears into rock faces spottled with lichen. And since memory had its beginning, the people have come, always alone, to ask their questions. The questions are always big, no matter how small: Will grandfather ever return? Will the honey-skinned girl with black hair ever love me? Will mother survive her illness? Will my friend forgive me? Why is my lover sad? How can I heal myself? When did the talk become silence? Why is there pain? They come, and ask their questions, and wait, and go away. If you were to stand and listen in, you'd never hear a reply. No whisper, no shout, no rough, rock-hewn voice entoning ancient wisdom. But the people leave satisfied, and the stone people still sit, motionless.

And no, I have no idea what the story is about. Just have that image in my head. It will be something that I'll probably do a Bradbury on and freewrite with it, throw in a character and see what happens with this image. This is kind of how "And the Star Fell" started -- an image that haunted, which also sprang from a dream. I can almost see the character for this one. A young man, gangly, loping, with unkempt hair and a distracted air. The kind of person that, while he will talk to you and listen attentively, will always seem to have one ear, and one eye, cocked to a different realm. He will come to the stone people. I'll let you know why when I find out...

But for now, I'd settle for figuring out why, and how, my characters will act in the end game. I know why the girl does what she does, at least. Actually, I understand the old woman, too. I figured that out, at least, during the work day when I had some time off. And the boy's motivation is increasingly simple, as more and more I realize my narrator is not the main character, really. It's the other one, the one at the heart of the story, that perplexes. Mainly a matter of gauging how he'll react when faced with what he most desires, and with rejection, and with his own terrible guilt. Partly, I feel sorry for the poor bastard, because I know how it ends. I'm just not entirely certain of the steps he takes that lead him there...

It has something to do with the mendicant, a burning mark, a curse imagined...I can almost see it, damn it...

Tuesday, April 12, 2005

The Voice

This story. Man. It's killing me. In a good way. But every time I turn around, it seems to be demanding something new from me. Tonight it was a simple realization about the voices and the end of the story. That, frankly, I don't know how to do.

I guess I'll have to figure it out.

I feel like I'm so out of my depth with this. There's these moments when the Dark Voice inside of me comes out and starts crowing. This, it says, is the proof. Faceplanting is guranteed. As a writer I am nothing more than a poser. A Big Fat Poser. And tonight I'm really feeling that voice a bit. As usual, it is a clever fuck and uses some truth to back its arguments up. I have been, it must be said, a dilletante about this writing thing. I have run from this passion, and avoided it, and hemmed and hawed and run and half-assed way too much. I'm waking up to that and clamping down, but the fact remains. I have had a passion, and disrespected it. I have been given the gift of Life, and not lived up to my end of the bargain like I should.

All this makes it hard, at moments, to fight this voice. Really, really hard. I know, of course, the truth. I am breaking out everythign I have on this story. I am stretching myself. Looking at the draft in progress, there are definitely parts I can point to and say, wow, I'm proud of that. And I'm proud that I'm stretching myself. I can see the things I do well, really. But dear lord sometimes that don't matter. The voice talks louder and louder, and as I struggle with some seemingly impossible thing, like how to work a tricky transformation of voice, and...fuck. You know?

I think, sometimes, the scary thing about art, about creating, is not the fear that I might be just another Salieri dreaming of being Mozart. It's that I might be Ed Wood.

I recognize this voice for what it is. It is the antithesis of creativity, of creation. It is destruction. It would destroy everything I have, if it could, rip each piece away from me until there was nothing left. A Shiva dance on my soul without the cycle back into creation. It's a blackhole, an ugly thing of appetite. It speaks with a voice that told me, long ago, that I was worthless, a disappointment, a nothing. It speaks with the voice of the dead.

I hate it. I hate that it's part of me. I hate that, even as I see what kind of beauty I can create, I find myself doubting it. This story, really, has become a challenge. I will figure it out. I will fight and fight to learn the skills I need to make this work. Just so I can shove it down The Voice's throat and laugh as it chokes.

Monday, April 11, 2005

A Moment on MSN

i'm reno. a turk. and you are in the wrong place. says:
gerg says:
i'm reno. a turk. and you are in the wrong place. says:
i require cookies
gerg says:
oh dear
gerg says:
i have no memory of typing "pfft"
gerg says:
but apparently did
gerg says:
*thunks head on table*
i'm reno. a turk. and you are in the wrong place. says:
gerg says:
i really don't
gerg says:
dear lord am i that tired?

Sunday, April 10, 2005

I walked on the banks of the tincan banana dock

[Listening to: Hear You Me - Jimmy Eat World - Jimmy Eat World (4:45)]

Hmmm. After midnight. I should be in bed. I guess. But I'm not, and so perchance to blog. Or something.

Today was...yes. A quietly momentous day. If that makes sense. I have been admitting something of late -- you who know what I mean know what I mean. Today was the day I fully admitted it, and took the step that needed taking. I am hopeful and terrified. But a step. This has been done. Things are in motion. I am in motion.

The house from last night haunts me still. The image stuck in my head like a bur. The Christmas lights, I think, are what really got me. The scene was just so Kafkaesque, really, with those twisted metal shapes sticking up from out of the shadows and into the unreal glow of those lights. So out of place, the whole of it. The sculptures, the lights. Unnerving. They actually entered my dreams last night. Vague, unholy hints of metallic Boschian figures. *shudder*

The freaky factor was strangely delicious last night. After the dreams, decidedly less so. My mind is open prey right now to such images, I'm afraid. My imagination is a very active thing, and right now very in tune with things that go bump in the night. Now is the time I would see ghosts, and worse things. My whole life has gone liminal. I've cast off from a shore and don't know where the other side is, or if there is even another side. And while I will have guidance now, it can only point me in a direction. The steps that have to be taken must still be taken by me.

Those sculptures -- it is as if they are grotesque parodies of life, sufficiently real, in their freakish setting, to not be simple objects, but also not be alive, either. Undead metallic beings, rising up from the shadows of the Earth in search of existence. That so can't be good.

See what I mean? You just have to hear these bits of my imagination. I have to live with it and the full digital video with Dolby Surround Sound effect of it. I am saturated in it. I think, really, this has always been part of my problem. When someone said, for example, horrible things to me, things that cut and cut and ripped and tore, that's how I felt it. Right there. Words transmuted into physicality. Remote abuse by way of an imagination out of control.

I wonder, sometimes, if in my worst moments, I wasn't really just trying to make the scars visible to other people.

Friday, April 08, 2005

Penguin dust, bring me penguin dust, I want penguin dust--

Went to Coffee Xchange tonight. Needed a change of scenery, and wanted to focus on some writing. Turned out to be a damnfine idea. We've gotten to the point of the new draft that the big level changes are happening, and I got through two difficult scenes that do a lot to set up the conflicts that should see this story on its course to the end. Have a lot of questions still -- know the ending, know up to the point I wrote tonight, and have some ideas about the in-between, but not completely. The Old Woman is turning out to be something of an enigma right now -- her role is bigger now, but not sure yet completely how. But increasing her presence is intensifying the conflict quite a bit, and giving me more ways to sneak in all the levels of this story.

Had one of those nights, too, where I seemed tuned into small details around me. Two things made the bike ride over on Water memorable. It was pitch, pitch black tonight, and those backstreets can get very, very dark, middle of the city or no. The blackness was this living, breathing thing that chewed away at my bike light until I was just this tiny tendril of light in the night, the ground beneath me blinking red from my reflector light. And I passed the house -- this weird, wondrous, spooky place. The yard is filled with these metal sculpture things. Even by day they are bizarre, sometimes disturbing, sometimes delightful. At night, the yard is lit up with Christmas lights, and the figures stand up out of the light and the shadows of the cacti and trees and bushes. It's like some phantasmagora, spooky and compelling at the same time. Past that, the night swallows up the street again, and there is a lonely light at one intersection where there is one of those center thingies with sculptures and plants. There was, oddly, a man sitting in the middle of it, by the small light. He had a flashlight, and just sat there, and called out a friendly greeting as I bike past.

[Minor Update: Gerg being Gerg, I had this odd moment after I passed him, thinking "that was no man, but some fae creature waiting for..." Something. And then I started wondering -- there's magic in crossroads in the old stories, and this was a sort of crossroads. Do intersections count? And does the round center piece add to the magic? Like maybe a bit of a fairy circle thing going on?]

At Coffee Xchange, I kept having to stop and ponder, and so frequently looked out the window. To the north, on the east side of the street, there is a strip of stores, all glass fronted. And the cars -- many of them, it being Campbell on a Friday night -- turned the windows into this dancing parade of headlight reflections, like the whole strip had come alive with odd, alien fireflies. It was one of those moments of accidental beauty that can pop up in urban landscapes, and everytime I had to think I looked up and watched the dancing lights.

And the mocha I had, for the record, was divine. As was the mint tea I had a bit later. But writing. It was good. But dear me, I have a lot of stuff in the ol' writing book to type into the computer this weekend.

Thursday, April 07, 2005

yelling Radio belly! Cat shovel!

[Listening to: Jockey Full of Bourbon - Tom Waits - Beautiful Maladies - The Island Years (2:47)]

Hmmm. Last night I ended up falling asleep a little past 8pm, and waking up at 7am. The funny thing is that I apparently turned off the TV, AC and opened the window at some point, but have no recollection of it.

I think my body was trying to tell me something. This morning, I woke up, and a bit later realized that it was the first time in a month or more, maybe 2, that I had woken up not feeling exhausted already. Could just be me, but that's Not Right. Today, though, was right, and I felt so much more able to deal with the world than I did yesterday. Not saying everything is peachy keen oh can't you just hear the little birds chirping, but I can deal. This is a start. I know where to put my feet.

I can laugh, now, that two weeks ago I was thinking like "oh, I had a good long cry and now everything is magically better." *thunks head on table* Yeah, it was going to be that easy. Dumbass.

Yesterday, no writing to speak of. See first paragraph. Today, got some work done on next scene, which is the first requiring deep, huge changes. Coming together nicely, I think. So want this draft done. Want to share share share.

I've also been annoying some folks with an odd question, and thought I'd post it here, too, for everyone to ponder upon -- if, say, you were feeling poetic, and found yourself wondering what flower a star would smell like -- which flower would it be? It has to be a smell that, well, carries -- no light scent here that you only pick up close to the flower, but something that would fill the air. It can't be jasmine. If I told you why I'd have to kill you. You'll see when you read the story. Part of me wonders if there are some good night-blooming flowers that would fit the bill, since, you know, stars come out at night.

As a final note, I just gotta say -- yoga was transcendent tonight. And I'm rather happy because today I got asked if I had lost weight, and tonight achieved something in yoga I haven't been able to do in butt forever. I'm becoming one Right Sexy Bastard. And this Right Sexy Bastard is going to go to bed now.

Wednesday, April 06, 2005

And I trembling what to say say Pie Glue!

Writing. This is the thing this week. Everything else -- I'm struggling. Head above water, and aiming to stay that way, but really feeling like my feet have been swept out from underneath me. So. Grab a lifeline -- writing.

"And The Star Fell" is progressing forward on its new draft at a steady pace, all hand-written at the moment, and sometimes in a feverish scrawl that is going to be joy to decipher when I finally start typing it into the computer. And I want to, because I'm wanting to share this story again suddenly. Want that draft to share. It's an amazing thing. I was so freaked after I read over the first draft. I had given it to Junli before she left for Hawaii, and then read it, panicked, thinking oh shit why did I share this with ANYONE, and became deeply convinced I had totally faceplanted. What's especially funny about this is that today I find out that Junli -- who had no instructions from me otherwise and thus is totally blameless and should not, in any way, feel bad about this -- shared the story with her father. So two people read it, one a perfect stranger to me at the moment except through reputation. Oh dear.

Anyway. What I had, in fact, done, was not so much a real, honest-to-god draft, but rather a sort of thinking out/outlining/sketching draft. And now things are coming together in this methodical, feverish way -- scene by scene, each revealing the next. Deep level rewriting. Layers being added. Interesting questions coming up. Getting more comfortable with some of the tricksy bits. It is hard, let me tell you, writing in a first person POV when the narrator is mentally wigged out -- starved, delerious, time itself going a bit batty, as he is slowly...oh, must shut up. Don't want to give away anything.

Most proud I am of the kinds of questions I'm asking in this draft. I'm thinking in skill terms at a bit of a new level for me. I really feel like this is a story where I'm stretching myself that next bit. It feels good. And what the fuck is up with that Yoda moment in the first sentence of this paragraph? "Most proud I am, yes. Go to the Dark Side you will." *thunks head on table*

It was not too many days ago that I had some really fucking dark thoughts going through my head. Big, ugly self-doubts. And now, tonight, looking over the last few days, I'm having this strange sensation -- that I'm creating something beautiful. Like if I bring this story into the world I will have birthed some beauty into this world, fought back the ugly a bit. That may sound arrogant. But it's what it feels like. I'm still amazed at the idea that I might be able to do that. May have, in fact, done it. I have to hold on to that feeling, and use it to fight the fuckass voice that tries to bring me down. It's a hard fight ahead. I'm scared shitless, frankly. But these last couple of days -- I have written, I have created some beauty. Take that, you fucking piece of shit voice.

p.s. Some votes for a change of venue for this blog have come in. Any other peeps out there having problems with comments? I'll decide by the end of the week, I think, if only so Spookit knows which blog format she has to design my template for.

Monday, April 04, 2005

Late Night Blog

I should be in bed, and will be again soon. But just had a conversation with a friend, and it was something I needed. Can't really explain why. Just -- yeah. Sometimes there's peeps that support you in those small but huge ways. I seem to be blessed with those folks right now, and the conversation tonight was like that. Nothing earth-shaking, just that bit of something that says you matter in this cosmos. And it's not like a poof of magic and wow, everything is okay. But you can wrap your head around okay. You can see yourself getting there.

Maybe that's the most precious thing we do for each other sometimes -- let each other know that there is an end to the pain, or a way past it, or a way to not let it take your life over so that you can still find joy. To just remind each other that there's something more.