Sunday, January 30, 2011

RRRRReasons Squared: Time Sinks, Literary Gestation

I don't think I ever really know what comes of stories until they're actually produced. I wish my process were more spontaneous and carefree, as opposed to a few words at a time, my timidity getting the best of ideal productivity. Caution kills, literarily. It's going back and fixing things in the most exacting manner possible, but generating fearlessly. I have no problem looking like an idiot in life, but somehow on paper I'm in junior high school again.

I'm thinking of putting my indefatigable knowledge of obscure pop music to good use. And I don't mean making more operatic versions of more Blues Travelers songs, although that's not even kind of such a bad idea.

I thought of this when I found myself skipping down First Avenue singing the entire Beauty and the Beast soundtrack after a glass of prosecco. I was not by myself, though. Internet loser admissions part 2345667.

In terms of structure, my idiocy knows no bounds. And discourages me from writing, or finishing writing. I've never been good at arranging. In fact, I'm very bad at arranging. But admitting you're awful at something doesn't mean you shouldn't try really ridiculously hard. I think I haven't followed this rule as much as I'd like.

I feel like this is why collages make such abounding sense to me. I haven't made one in awhile. Probably because they're dumb and for teenage girls. I am proud not to be a teenage girl.

Why hate Valentine's Day? Hate is way too passionate. This holiday calls for indifference, or hanging out with your least favorite friend and sharing a King Kobra. Or even a more average drink. I'm a sucker for little glittery heart-shaped pieces of pink paper, though, and my adoration of candy knows no bounds.

This feels a little more like a livejournal entry than I would prefer.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Reason Number I Don't Even Know Anymore

Writing is difficult. An understatement. I keep thinking any minute it's going to be warmer than it is now, which is defeatist.

Revision is ugh. I'm losing words, and feeling my writing become more lucid and more frenetic simultaneously. The story I'm working on is grotesque and campy in ways I haven't played with yet. I don't know if it's good or bad, but I'm having a good time fictionalizing. I guess that's all that matters for now.

In other news, I made soda bread, which was not amazing, but certainly tasty.

It's not the act of producing words, it's putting everything together, determining the overarching structure, the decision-making that accompanies structuring.

What a suckfest post.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Reason Number A: Soft Peaks

In spite of weather so foul I can't even formulate a scathing aside about it, and in spite of not being in possession of a stand mixer, I managed to create soft peaks with just an egg white, a whisk, and a green bowl. Not to mention monster hand and wrist strength, and epic determination. Pancakes are well worth grueling efforts. And these required cornmeal in addition to plain old flour, with grand textural consequences.

I'm beginning to wonder if a well-constructed, impeccably-fitted boot cut jean is not so bad. I tried on a pair while in Georgia, and they were bizarrely flattering, and I might even go so far as to say an exciting way to reinvigorate denim after years of ankle constraint. I did not buy these jeans, as I felt it would be impractical and perhaps too brash to do so at this time, but maybe in summer?

Too much Janet Jackson is never a bad thing, and I say this with absolute, empirical certainty.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Reason Number &: Oreo Cookies and Unwieldy Poetic Frameworks

I think one of my greatest skills in life is ruining. I actually sneezed chocolate (a full five minutes after eating chocolate) onto one of my favorite shirts, a cream silk blouse with a nipped, slim fit that goes with just about everything, or did before I ruined it.

I also destroy even the most resilient shoes that, on another person, might remain pristine, unscathed by vicious sidewalks and precipitation.

On any given day, I have a rash.

I overuse mediocre, frivolous words like "extraordinary" and "humiliating" and "extreme" in both adjective and adverb form, and now that I've brought up adverbs I may as well admit they threaten to ambush my every utterance.

I will never understand how a person doesn't trip and fall at least once during the day. Forward movement is perilous, and often I don't see how it's done, in the literal sense that my glasses are fogged, or smudged, and I always forget to bring the right kind of cleansing cloth, and worsen the smudges with improper fabric like rayon. (cough, rayon is always an improper fabric)

Often, my upper lip gets stuck to my teeth when I smile at nothing, or at something that makes no sense to anyone around me.

I can never tell a not circuitous story, full of pauses, tangents, sideways glances into space.

I lost my virginity to a song from a Disney movie soundtrack. I'll let you guess which one. I would insist this was not my idea (it wasn't!!), but at this point the fact that I let it happen makes me just as guilty as the penis-wielder that pressed play.

What if I were to write a series of sestinas that is actually an enormous sestina?

What if my coat weren't always covered in cat hair?

What if I were to stop complaining right now?

I could, after all, be listening to Luther Vandross in a cold room.

Instead, I just ate two oreo cookies that reminded me to eat more oreo cookies, and often.

A man rang our buzzer, the reason being that he had an extra copy of our keys. He wanted a reward. "I could have stolen your plasma TV! Or your iPod!" he said. We don't have a plasma TV. But thanks random man for not stealing from me. And I mean that from the bottom of my heart.

ETA: Editing. A reason for gratitude. A way to make adverbs disappear, and melt reiterations, and just make things better. Can be repeated until things are better.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Reason Number: Cold Clandestine Showers of Indeterminate Value

I take showers brief enough to make family and friends balk, question my degree of cleanness, which I will defend almost as much as Mozart's Clarinet Concertos, or hating Inception. The brevity of my showers is intensified (can brevity be intensified? probably not) when the water spurting from my spigot is lukewarm and it's 24 degrees outside, or less, probably.

Things are strange when there's more than an inch of snow on the ground in Georgia twice in one month. And here I am, addressing the weather.

Ely's been biting in increasingly formidable and damaging ways, and there is the possibility of putting him to sleep, which may be for the best, but as Doug pointed out like the astute pseudo-adult that he is, the thought of Ely's smell vanishing from the house is bizarrely off-putting and sad and strange. Sometimes I mark eras in my life by the lifespans of pets. When Ely was born I was fifteen. I wore dark makeup. I wrote solely about disease and heroines with embarrassingly Baroque names. Probably while listening to embarrassingly Baroque music. And having embarrassingly Baroque crushes. We never got along very well, our relationship wavering between red rockets and bared teeth, snarling standoffs over the years becoming more strained, and as it stands now he barely tolerates me unless no one else is in the house, in which case in desperation he squeals for me to pick him up and swaddle him in blankets, which I refuse to do out of sheer terror.

In other news, I spent the day dressing models while wearing only black, which is something I hadn't necessarily foreseen. I also ate an entire miniature pizza in front of them, which did not make me feel bad about myself one bit. A feat.

I'm thinking of doing a prose poem series about sports. Back to basics. 1B Delgado on the DL.
Less thinking, more doing.

I remember when I used to try doing experimental things with my writing, like writing about miniature golfing in Middle English. Sometimes I wonder if doing this detracts from storytelling or if it enhances what could otherwise be ordinary. I guess both.

I'm going to bed before ten thirty. Tomorrow morning, I will walk past Hollister while wearing all black on my way to dress models.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Reason Number ?????: ??????

Bulldozed. All I want to do is search eBay for deco blouses and suede boots and Chanel flats while my cat bites my feet. New beginnings, new anxiety, new desperately seeking reasons not to. Thesis advisory, joblessness, the silver lining (which certainly is NOT the fact that I just said "silver lining") being endless time to work on thesis without money for recreation, distraction. I want to take a road trip somewhere, revisit, rewrite, edit my life into oblivion and reconfigure. Reconstruction is the name of the game. The name of the game? Cliche, apparently. The names of trees in my brain always. Sometimes I feel the person I was at fourteen was a different beast altogether, and other days I wake up, her again, and terrified. But all I want to do is write, but now I'm too scared to write, and sometimes even read. But I gotta choose a thesis advisor, and go to yoga, and spray medication up my nose, and put one foot in front of the other foot. And there are a billion books I've been meaning to read but haven't, having been busy, so here I am.