Archives for category: Thoughts

So I posted this on Facebook, but kinda felt it belonged here too on WordPress. Just a miniature rant on how I feel like an old fart…

Last night I attended a talk given by John Green on his latest book The Fault in Our Stars. I like to think I’m pretty hip. Down with the kids and all that. I try to follow memes. I peruse Tumblr & Reddit. I even worship at the alter of Buzzfeed.

Well, I have never felt like such a middle aged biddy in my entire life.

The 900+ teenagers in attendance screamed and shouted their way through the entire talk. It was as if the Beatles themselves had taken to the stage. I was completely flabbergasted. There was even ‘in’ jokes between John Green and the 900 so-called ‘nerd fighters’. WHATS A NERD FIGHTER? Can I be one?

And who the hell was Hank? And why was he singing songs about molecules and what not? Was I even in the right place?

So needless to say for an hour I was completely lost. How has it come to this? When did I become THAT person? And how come I had more in common with the 50+ year old man who left at the same time as me? We both turned to each other, wild eyed and scarred and muttered something about ‘the youth of today’.

Oy vey.

As I outlined in my previous post, I’m desperate to get a new job. I’ve got bills to pay. I’ve learnt all that I can in my current position, it is time to high tail it out of there.

And whilst I’ve been looking aimlessly at library jobs, I have to be realistic that there are a handle of jobs out there and hundreds of people applying for them. So new avenues will have to be approached.

I stumbled across a job called a Community Manager and for the first time in a long time my heart began to race. Being a Community Manager is everything that i’ve wanted to do. It combines the worlds of social media and journalism with dashes of business thrown into it for good measure. It involves promoting brands through social media by engaging customers around said brand. It’s fascinating. And I want in.

I really believe I have the skills to fulfil the roles that are currently being advertised out there. It’s just a matter of someone taking a chance on me.

And so I’m completely reconstructing my CV. My current one is aimed for library jobs and is very detailed. I now have to somehow condense my jobs and make them somewhat more interesting to prospective employers. Hopefully it will be worth it in the long run!

2013 for me is my ‘year of change’. The past two years have been hard, I lost both my Grandparents who were effectively like my parents. Their deaths came as a surprise and I miss them dreadfully. Also the job front has been at a standstill. I’ve working for over 2 years as a part time library assistant. And funnily enough I’m tired on living on half wages.

So resolutions abound, I pledge for 2013 to:

1. Become a skinny ass mo’fo. I’ve said these for probably the last 15 years, but this year is shall happen for me. Goodbye unhealthy lifestyle. Hello fruit and veggies galore.

2. Get a full time job. This may require me to leave my area of librarianship. Which does sadden me as I’ve only just entered the field and had assumed it was a career path for life. But ultimately I will be employed full time by the end of the year. I have to be. I got bills to be paying, bitch. {Watching too much Breaking Bad will affect your vocab…}

3. Self publish my novel. If I could just edit the blasting thing I’d be flying. I’ve never been one to go over my work, it bores me. Or I just gawp at the thing for hours. But hopefully by the summer it’ll be gone and I can check this off the list.

4. Give up smoking. I only social smoke at the moment, having giving up smoking in September and doing remarkably well. Now the only time I’ll smoke is on a night out and would never have more than 5. But if I could just kick this habit, that would be brilliant. Its a shame the smoking area is the best area in the bar to meet awesome people.

5. Be open to new experiences/chances. This boils down to laziness. I do a lot of stuff by myself, so this shouldn’t bother me, I just need to man up and get over being a lazy ass bitch. Too many times I have feigned disinterest cause it would involve me having to leave the warm and comfortableness of my home to venture into the city to experience something fun. When I do go out of my comfort zones I always tend to have a brilliant night too! So man up!

Hopefully this will prove to be a fantastic new year and I hope that I can look back at the end of 2013 and be extremely happy with what I’ve accomplished.

Well, fingers crossed at least.

I’m having a little bit of difficulty at the moment. And of course it’s coming right as I write the last few thousand words of my novel. Typical.

I’ve pictured the ending of my novel for so bloody long now, that as I write it, I cannot for some reason or another write coherently, it’s all coming out as word vomit, and not the good kind either. I don’t know if it’s a case of my brain, saying, “Missy, just put all your ideas out here, then we’ll come back to it later” or if I’ve suddenly just become a goddamn awful writer. Some of the last few sections have been really good, and this vomit at the moment has just been, well, vomit.

It could also be a case of rushing. Although I don’t feel like I’m in a hurry. I’ve given myself a deadline of October 31st to finish writing Solace. This is not taking into account, time for edits, cover work etc. So I’ve still got a number of days ahead of me that will allow me plenty of time to work on the material at hand.

I think I’m just excited to be writing the final closing stages of the book. Because after this, well book 2 has been written for almost years. The majority of it, that is. And i’m itching to get started on that.

Obviously at times like this, it would be amazing to have an editor, to bounce ideas off. This is one of the harder parts of self publishing, the loneliness that accompanies your project. I haven’t established an online presence in relation to my writing, I’ve been so busy with the other side of things, that I thought leaving it until the novel was written would be a better decision. Now I’m slightly regretting it.

It also doesn’t help that the book you’re currently reading, the prose seems to be so effortless. Simple descriptions look like Joycean written passages. Goddamn.

What do you do to combat self doubts and bad writing?

Listening to music has always been important to my writing. Occasionally I’ll need absolute silence to write something important, but generally I’ll have something in the background.

Currently at the moment I’ve been listening a lot to Dario Marianelli’s Jane Eyre OST, it’s melancholic and haunting and fits perfectly in with my current writing mood.

Other favourites include;

-The Piano

-Pride & Prejudice

-Any classical music compilation albums

-The Talented Mr. Ripley

-Drive

-Atonement

{Anything really by Dario Marianelli – he composes the most beautiful pieces of music}

For some reason I can’t write to music that has lyrics, I’m not sure if it’s because I’ll get distracted by the lyrics or just distracted in general, but I tend to stay clear.

So, what do you listen to when you write?

Whilst trying to figure out something poignant to say, I happened to glance out my window and discover the most beautiful sunset happening outside my bedroom window. Naturally my first thought was to document it, rather than savour in the beauty of it. It disappeared after 3 or 4 minutes.

I’m currently in the middle of reading Susan Ee’s Angelfall and there are parts of the book, that I am looking at quite anxiously going, ‘Shit, my character does this thing too. Fuckety fuck.” The only thing that keeps me from ridding the whole damn novel is, Angelfall is a dystopian paranormal YA. Whereas mine is pure paranormal. God I hate that word. Paranormal. It feels icky writing it. When I picture the word paranormal and the connotations behind it, I think, weird, creepy and sad. Whereas that is so far from the truth. I’ve read so much of that genre, just under different guises.

I know my stressing over vague similarities between my book and Susan Ee’s book are ridiculous. And by vague I mean in my book Solace my character Esme drags an angel through the woods after she finds him stabbed. In Angelfall, Penryn lifts the angel into a wheelchair and brings him to safety. I know i’m just being ridiculous and dramatic and flailing all over the place, but it unsettled me for a day or two. Fingers crossed the angel and Penryn don’t fall in love…oh wait…shit.

Whilst writing the draft of my novel, it went under the working title of ‘The Lighthouse’. Yes, there is a lighthouse in the story, and in a sense serves as a metaphor throughout the novel. However last week I came up with it’s actual title…drum roll please….

Solace

I have to say I’m pretty happy with it. Sorry it sounds like I’ve invented the word, but it’s just the perfect word to describe the novel. I’ve even created a mock cover for it. Christ I know, anything but write the damn thing. Though for periods of this week, I was crazy productive. I just need to hop aboard that creative train again and get working.

Yesterday was my 27th birthday {when did I start to get so old???}, so I treated myself to a new MacBook Pro. I’ve had my MacBook for 5 years now and it’s been a wonderful friend. But lately it’s getting so very slow and it’s packed to the hilt with songs and movies and whatnot. This bad boy, allows me 500GB of space to fill. So clearly my weekend is going to be spent playing with it.

Now please excuse me, whilst I play with these shiny new buttons. Oooh what does this one do….

Yesterday I went to the cinema to see Now is Good with three of my girlfriends. I’d read the book, differently titled, Before I Die by Jenny Downham last year as I traveled home from Spain. I remember crying sobbing my heart out on the airplane, the lady seated next to me giving me strange glances. My grandfather has passed away earlier that year from cancer, and the book and its characters rang true to me, so that as I sat there reading the book, thousands of feet in the sky, I felt my heart break again.
Watching the movie last night ripped all those feelings open again, this time my beloved grandmother had only passed away 4 months ago. Her death came as a shock to the family and to all those around her. I sat in the cinema, and let the tears stream down my face, I desperately wanted to open my mouth and wail, but it seemed too personal.

The row, which consisted of just my friends and myself, shook with our sobs. Our noses running, sniffling back the lumps of pure unadulterated sadness that encapsulated us all. As the final titles appeared on the screen, we all looked at each other and began to giggle. The sight of 4 grown women sobbing their hearts out to dying Dakota Fanning is quite a sight.

This post is also to remind me of the emotions that are attached to our characters. Yes we can create sad scenes, a break up, a death, a sad goodbye, but it is the characterization and the reality that make it so important. If we can identify with the character, we’ll follow them on their path, breathing their air, fighting their fights etc. As Oisin McGann said earlier in the month, we need our characters to be emphatic. This has never been more true than last night as we followed our brave heroine on her struggle with cancer and love.
Caution: A word of warning to those going to see the movie. Bring an entire book of kleenex. It’s unbelievably sad. This is my new notebook.

Ian McEwan On His Writing Process.

The fabulous Mr. McEwan on his daily writing process. I really like what he has to say about reading, most people assume that if you are reading you are doing nothing. I often feel guilty about this, lying in bed {best place to read in my opinion} and reading for a few hours. Ok, maybe the fact that I’m in bed reading, makes it look like I’m quite lazy, but there is no where else comfortable to read. I couldn’t read sitting in an armchair for an hour or two. Books like to be curled up to.

My personal life has become a tiny bit haphazard. Whereas nothing was happening up to 2 weeks ago, suddenly I’ve gotten myself a voluntary position that is out of this world and excites the hell out of me.

The new position means a lot more researching and trying to organize meetings and blah blah blah.

So I have cumulatively written next to nothing. Awesome. That novel of mine is just totally going to write itself.

So perhaps now is a good time to discuss Time Management cause I don’t have a notion…

Personally. I like to relax in the evenings after work. I like to check Facebook, float around the kitchen, catch up with the familia. That’s just a normal night. Then I’ll eventually sit down and write from 9pm to around 11pm. I think it’s something to do with winding down my brain and getting into that relaxed stage where I’m just about ready for bed, but not quite.

But then life interrupts, trips to the cinema, tea with friends, socializing at the weekend and thus being far too hungover to even contemplate writing. So I’m making the decision now. Right now goddammit.

To be a better person. To a} write more b} blog more & c} spend less of my weekends hungover. I really want to do this, I’ve been meaning for so long to finish this novel, that I just want it done, and ready to leave my brain. It trickles into my subconscious daily and lingers there waiting for it to be released. Naturally as a procrastinator I ignore it and leave it to fester. But fester no more.

Oy vey.