Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Creative update

Hey nerds!

This one’s gonna be a shortie, since I don’t have a whole lot to say. But I wanted to share my excitement with the public! Everyone should know!

Thing one! I started knitting Christmas stockings for the new members of my family (spouses and nephews), and got ¾ of the way done with Branden’s. Then I realized I have to start over.

This is not the end of the world. I know that crafting can take many iterations to get things right, and I am just happy that yarn can be reused and reused and reused. Hooray. But I do need to figure out a way to make my stitches tighter, for the main problem with the stocking is that it’s too loose. Maybe I should pick up smaller needles?

Thing two! I have entered into a creative covenant with my favorite people to make a point-and-click adventure game. At this point it’s a twinkle in its parents’ eyes, but everyone involved has displayed symptoms of having the Brain Worm, so there’s a tiny, tiny chance this might actually happen. If so, I am the High Mucky-Muck Producer and a lowly minion of the art team.

So, please to be crossing your fingers for us! And I shall see you in the funny pages!

Monday, January 18, 2016

Not derailed so much as detoured

Good morning, dear reader.

Today I am exhausted. You know, like every day. I’m trying to be okay with it. After all, if it’s every day, it’s not unusual, right? Still, it’s hard to do anything that takes any brainpower at all. But all that takes is an attitude adjustment. Y’see, I don’t actually want to do nothing but play phone games. I’ve gotta look at the things I do as the things I want to do, instead of the things I should do.

In an effort to make creative endeavors feel more fun, I’m starting a new project. Cassidy isn’t at a standstill, and I am still working on it, but it’s… slothly. (It is too a word. I bet you even know what it means.) In the meantime, I’ve been watching Supernatural with friends, and Season 11 is frustrating me. Why does every threat have to be human-shaped?

Anyway, I wanted to explore what I thought this season’s Big Bad was going to be at the end of last season, when they set it up. I’m writing a whole season of Supernatural in episode format, modeled after Season 5 (which is objectively their best season) in terms of pacing and tension, etc. I’ve never done anything like this before, but I anticipate that it’ll be both easier and harder to approach. Like, easier because each episode is significantly shorter than a novel would be and self-encapsulates, but harder because the twenty-three episodes will have to carry the football of Season Arc into the end zone.

You know I’m tired when I start making football analogies.

I’ve never really written fanfic before, so, this will be interesting. My first stumbling block was that I was scared of getting the brothers’ voices wrong. But I decided, fuck it! I’m writing ’cause it’s fun. It can be as flawed as it is, and it’ll still be fun. Maybe one or two people will enjoy reading it, but if not, who cares. It’s fun. It’s my brainworm, no one else has to ride it.

Wish me luck, Reader.

Friday, January 8, 2016

A poem for my Grandma.

The world knows it is losing you.
It blankets the sky with gray like dawn;
Gray like grief underwater.
Smooth, empty, the clouds do not comment.
They simply give us
A blank slate for us to paint the pain of your passing.
Falling fragments of canvas,
Cold shards of static, offering anaesthetic
And dull chill.
I ask the sky,
How many times can we say goodbye?
Eternity answers, all, and none.

Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Feminist boys and Jessica Jones. (Possible spoilers. Not big ones.)

I'm gonna go out on a limb here and say that Jessica Jones is a uniquely feminine story. Sure, there are female stalkers, and female domestic abusers. I would never deny that. But if you are going to tell a story about stalking and rape and abuse, it would be weirdly callous and artificial if the victim was a male and the abuser female (unless, of course, the point of telling the story was to talk about female abusers). This story is one that far too many women know from personal experience.

Okay, spoilers over.

If one was to attempt to gender-swap the players in Jessica Jones, the story wouldn’t work nearly as well. It’s a story women can very much relate to—men, not so much. Yet, the show was recommended to me by a male friend, who had turned into an over-pressurized soda, so frothy was he with enthusiastic fandom. Branden and I proceeded to watch it, a little skeptical because of the samey-ness of Marvel IP, and were immediately drawn in before the credits even started.

They love everything I love about it. Though it is true that Jessica is a “victim” of Killgrave, she does not play a victim. She is a traumatized woman barely coping with life, but managing anyway. She relies on no one. She takes care of herself. This is made easier by the fact that she has super-strength, but honestly, that aspect is peripheral to the story. She is flawed, and so is every single other character in the show. Killgrave, too, is shown to be relatable—like so many stalkers are reported to be, he is charming, attractive, and even likeable. They both commented on the fact that, if Jessica were smiling, Killgrave’s behavior on its face isn’t very different from that of men in popular media, showing us all what “real love” looks like. This is even blatantly called out in the show.

In short, they liked it because—not even though—it’s a story about a woman, from the woman’s perspective, portraying every aspect of it exactly how a woman would experience it. No apologies or excuses or minimizing.

Boys are also getting sick of watching cishet white guys doing the same shit on a different day.

That was a nice thing to realize.

Okay. Back to your regularly scheduled internet.

Monday, January 4, 2016

New Year, same resolutions

Hello faithful readers,

I haven’t been posting much recently. This is primarily because I have nothing at all to say. Holidays are crazy for me as much as for anyone else, and I have made very little progress on my book. In the month of December, I participated in Advent of Code, a daily code puzzle for programmers of all levels. I got considerably better at Java, doing these puzzles. So, that made me happy. But I did use it as an excuse to not write.

There’s always one of those, isn’t there?

To be fair, I have also been exhausted nearly all the time. Right now, the screen is swimming in front of my eyes. I have to trust that I’m not typing gobbledygook because I tend to be a fairly good typist.

My idea for Cassidy keeps evolving, in good ways. I’m excited because it seems like it’s not evolving its main construction anymore, just minor details. It’s all good stuff.

Last week I had a dream I was writing. I was super proud of myself for writing, for once. I was very close to the surface, coming up, and I remember thinking, “oh, I’m not actually writing. I’m dreaming about writing. But at least I’m thinking about writing.” Then I actually woke up and realized the thing I was dreaming about writing… wasn’t my story. It was something about a cat. I was very disappointed. But it all evened out because I ended up forgetting everything that I’d been trying to retain, anyway.

So, that’s pretty much what I have to show for the last month: a dream about writing about a cat.

No, no, hold your applause.

I’m not optimistic about finishing Cassidy this month. But I’m going try, regardless. No more excuses! Try not. Do, or do not. There is no try. (Timely Star Wars Quote™.)

I will report back at regular intervals. Stay tuned.