I am kaitco

a writer's log

Complicated Days Saturday, April 30, 2011

Filed under: Writing — kaitco @ 11:59 pm
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While I’m generally happy since I have my car and I’m flush with all these feelings of pride over something for which I’ve never had the need to be proud, today was simply full of fail. First-job and I…just when I think I have a handle on something, I fail…hard and to the point where I’m reluctant to even try again.

Speaking of fail, I’m considering dropping my music lessons. I’m not progressing at all right now and I’m terribly frustrated because I should be able to do more than what I can do, but nothing’s happening and while I understand that this isn’t going to come overnight, I’m not training to be a concert musician and 30 minutes of practices two or three days a week should suffice for what I’m doing. Grr! Why do I fail so hard at music?!?!?

I’m rather tired, so even though I really wanted to ramble on further about the car and the depths to which I’ve failed today, I’ll end by saying that I wrote 345 words tonight (but we can go in if you want) and that it’s getting more and more difficult to get this done, even four months into it.

 

My new car! Friday, April 29, 2011

Filed under: Dorienne,Writing — kaitco @ 11:59 pm
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As I said iAuto, I bought a “new” car and tonight, I got to drive it for the first time.

I’m so ridiculously excited by it that I could cry and I feel so blessed by the events that have transpired so that I could get that I think may actually tear up by the end of this post…(too late).

I wrote 321 words tonight (Looks like you love it…a lot) and I could and should write more, but I’m too excited by my car to think of anything else.

The most fascinating thing about it is when I first saw pictures of it on Wednesday. I kept pulling up the e-mail and gazing at the images and imagined myself sitting in it, getting it and loving it. What I really daydreamed about, however, is driving it for the first time. I wanted to have a CD ready to pop into the player and listen to classic music while feeling very grown and sophisticated as I drove. In my excitement to go get it tonight, I hadn’t burned my CD (though I think I really would have struggled with this…I don’t even know if I even have blank CDs) and was a little bummed that I could not have my first “classical” drive.

When I got the car, I saw that it had no gas left in it, so I was traveling down this lonely road with my cousin trailing behind me looking for a gas station and when I finally found one, I sat at one of the stations just reveling in my vehicle. I then started to mess with the radio a little and, out of curiosity, I checked each of the preset stations to see what some previous driver had added. Since it was dark and I wasn’t entirely sure what I was doing yet, I clicked on one station preset and then clicked another button thinking it was the next preset. Turns out, it was the “channel up” button which went to the next clear station…which turned out to be an all classical station. 🙂

I plan to add this as a preset first thing in the morning (as soon as I get on the temp tags), but tonight, I got to live my little dream and have my first drive of my car while listening to classical music the whole drive.

I’m so blessed and I know I cannot thank God enough for all the blessings He’s given me just today, if not throughout this entire month and my whole life! I’ve wanted a little Honda Civic for at least the last 18 months and now I have one. I wanted a brand new one with a sunroof, a no-glare rear-view mirror, a remote start and in a colour that was different from the Civics that my neighbors on either side of me have, but I just needed a newer car to get me out of the one I was driving. God let me have a 2009 Civic with just 23K miles with a sunroof, in a “unique” colour and still even has it’s new-car smell. 🙂

For the past few months, I’ve been in a right depression from wanting and wanting and wanting and feeling as if nothing will ever change or ever happen for the better, but in one month, I know where I stand with first-job and I have a new car.

I don’t say this often enough, but tonight, I’m really, really happy.

 

256 Thursday, April 28, 2011

I’ve not been sleeping well these past few nights and it seems to have all caught up with me in the last twenty minutes. Nevertheless, I did manage to write a little.

I signed all the loans for my car today. It was simultaneously an amazing and an ignorant decision. Where do I get off borrowing 15K for some little thing to take me back and forth to work and church?? On the other hand, just the thought of my current/old car is enough to drive me into a depression. Though I’ve not driven the new car yet, I’m already in love with it.

I’ve decided to change the second book Damen and Brit read together from Their Eyes Were Watching God to A Raisin in the Sun instead. I’ve not read Their Eyes in a long time and, while the story is great, I realize I’ll have more to say about the play than the novel…

…hmmm. Just realized that that change kind of mucks up a previous conversation between Damen and Corey which leads to a big revelation about Corey. Oh well…I suppose I’ll make it work somehow.

I still haven’t figured out how Dana Barrington fits into the latter half of the story, but I’ll add the play to the now growing list of inconsistencies with the novel that I’ve got to fix.

I wrote 256 words tonight (when you live two seconds away.) and because of my extreme fatigue, I really wanted to just let this night go and not write at all. In the end, however, I looked at the date on my laptop clock and said to myself, “Are you really going to let almost 90 days of consistent writing go to waste like that?” So, I wrote a little and brainstormed some more. I’ve got even more to “correct” in the book, but at least I’m recognizing my issues before half a chapter goes by and I’m left to really correct the book.

 

iAuto Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Filed under: Writing — kaitco @ 11:59 pm
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Today, I’ve experienced the bowels of management and the ugly drama of trying to get a car. I have to say, Edmunds is just plain mean for placing the trade-in value of my car at only $367, that’s if I guessed right on it’s driveability, which I’m sure I didn’t.

Perhaps in a few days, I’ll have a nice shiny image of my new car to post. I’m already in love with it, so I hope it comes sooner rather than later.

I wrote 338 words (I’ll probably finish in the morning) and what’s interesting is that I’m getting to the point where I can just tell if I’ve reached 250 words by a quick glance at the text. Even with vast expanses of prose and disjointed dialogue, I always know where to stop.

 

New Steps Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Filed under: Writing — kaitco @ 11:52 pm
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I think I figured out how to tie up my hair with a satin scarf…well, at least it hasn’t slid off my head yet and it’s not giving me a headache; hurray for YouTube videos.

I’m also going to try giving this Remote Access stuff a try for first-job tonight. I’ve got a ton of stuff to do this week and it would be just lovely if I could do a little bit more from the comfort of my chair/sofa/whatever, in glasses and in my PJs with my music playing in the background.

I wrote 272 words tonight (from frowning when Brit’s parents) and just had to stop when I realized that a slight change in some earlier dialogue – a change I really liked – has completely altered how I’ll need to go about ending this scene and I realized that I couldn’t write any further until I came up with a plan to fix my congruity error.

I’m a bit sleepy since I spent all of last night taking down my braids and most of this morning, combing out and attempting to straighten my hair, but since I’ve got first-job stuff ahead of me and 2/3 bottle of Mountain Dew Code Red beside me, I know I’ll be all right.

 

Foggy eyes Monday, April 25, 2011

Filed under: Writing — kaitco @ 9:35 pm
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I’ve worn contacts since I was about 12 years old and will probably continue to do so since I’m afraid of the laser eye surgery and my vision is worse than legally blind without them. Every night, I reach this point where my eyes are just plain tired and I get this fog effect across my lenses where tears and mucus run across my eye each time I blink. Sometimes I get it in both eyes, but often it’s just one and is one of the more annoying aspects of my evening.

I mention this, not solely because I’m about to take down my hair and my current eye-fog is a clear indicator that I may not be up for the seven-hour ordeal of taking down braids, but also because I’ve simply run out of things to say after 100-plus days of blogging daily.

I wrote 321 words (next to the sofa where Anthony’s girls slept) and know I won’t be writing anything further tonight. At this point, I’ll be happy if I manage to get some sleep before 9 o’clock tomorrow morning.

 

The hypocrite Sunday, April 24, 2011

Filed under: Dorienne,Writing — kaitco @ 11:59 pm
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Something fascinating occurred today of all days: I didn’t go to church. To be honest with myself, I probably had my mind made up after my 9:30 alarm went off that I wasn’t going, but I usually ignore that laziness and drag myself there in time to at least hear the sermon. Today, of all days, I didn’t.

I’m a firm believer in the idea that going to church makes you as much a Christian as standing in a garage makes you a Porsche, but I have long since acknowledged that I need to go to church. Even when I’ve tried to leave my specific church, everything in the world will rise up and prevent me from leaving. So, while I know it’s not necessarily necessary, I know I ought to go.

Many years ago, when I was more agnostic than I was Christian, my mother would take us to church at least once a year, usually around Easter. I never wanted to go back then because I thought it was all so pointless. Years later when I became an avid church-goer, I noticed the multitudes who came to church only on Easter, or Christmas or sometimes for our Watch Night Service. Try as I might to keep an open Christian heart and mind, I would still have that small voice that judged these Easter/Christmas Christians and would be annoyed that they crowded my church as they did twice a year. Today, that small voice kept me from getting ready to go to church and thus spending Easter with my family today.

I’m not sure if I feel as ashamed as I should that I didn’t want to surround myself with a “bunch” of Easter/Christmas Christians and I’ve been trying to wrap my mind around it all day. All I know for certain is that I’ve done some hypocritical things in my life, but today has reached a new Number 1 on the hypocrite charts. Perhaps next Easter will be different; perhaps this post will remind me of my hypocrisy and keep me from heading down this road in the future. Perhaps…

Since I didn’t want to go to church, I didn’t want to do any work, include write, but I suppose until my second job is my first-job, writing is still a hobby instead of a job. I managed 264 words tonight (“Oh…I was gonna say…”) and doubt I’ll make much headway on the novel this week, with a doctor’s appointment and end of the month first-job disastrousness looming, but if I do anything this week, it will be ensuring not to top my latest hypocritical moment.

 

Wondering Saturday, April 23, 2011

Filed under: Dorienne,Favorite,Writing — kaitco @ 11:40 pm
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Sometimes, I wonder what it must have been like to be alive during Jesus’ time. What would I have thought of the “man” calling Himself the son of God? Would I have followed Him? Would I have washed His feet with my hair? Would I have jumped through crowds just to touch the hem of His clothes, knowing I would be healed?

I know the Dorienne I am today is very skeptical and I wonder if that same skepticism would have crossed the ages. Would I have been among the throngs crying Hosanna one Sunday and crucify by Friday? Would I have fallen to my knees with regret for my actions when the skies grew dark upon His death? Or would I be among those throwing stones at Stephen?

I’d like to think that faith alone would drive me to the right decision, but again, I’m a pragmatist always and I can’t help knowing that five years ago, that which brought me to Christ is His answering of a very specific prayer, thus “proving” Himself to me. He gave skeptical, pragmatic, me precisely what I needed to see and hear and touch and experience to make me come to him.

So, even through all this wondering, I think I can say that perhaps I might have got swept up in the crowd shouting crucify one “Friday” some two thousand years ago, but I’m pretty confident in knowing that Christ would have still made me believe.

I wrote 302 words tonight (so that’ll be my bonus.”). Nothing special or particularly Resurrection-related, just 300 words to do what I do every night. Tonight, however, I just wanted to reflect a bit, as I use holidays not so much as a time of stuffing myself with food and the sloth of relaxation, but as a moment to try and understand who I am and what I’m doing here. As the actual date is virtually meaningless since even the Gregorian calendar is inherently wrong, I’ll chose tonight as my moment to reflect on Resurrection, just in case I don’t get a real chance tomorrow.

 

Frasier, Shakespeare, Wings and Things Friday, April 22, 2011

Filed under: Dorienne,Writing — kaitco @ 11:38 pm
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So, I’ve been watching my single season of Frasier over and over again lately as I anxiously await new discs from Netflix and I came to a conclusion about the show.

Frasier shares a fun similarity to Shakespeare comedies. Nearly every single episode hinges on the fact that one or two characters have a misunderstanding and comedy ensues from there. For example, in an episode where Roz ponders over whether she is pregnant, Niles misinterprets a conversation he overhears between Frasier and Daphne and brings the hilarity in spades. Many Shakespeare comedies contain plotlines that come from similar misunderstandings, like with Much Ado About Nothing that just pops to mind. Claudio’s misunderstanding leads to the drama and eventual perceived happy ending, where everyone is married, that comes in every Shakespeare comedy.

I state all of this, not because it bears any relevance to my writing, but simply because I’ve been watching non-stop and have found that I’m capable of writing with it in the background.

My assistant may come back to join us at first-job and, while I’m tempted to get over-joyously excited, the trust is gone and I know that even if we’re a team once again, it most likely would not stay that way for long. Still…just the thought of having my buddy around again is a nice thought.

In the fashion of randomness into which this post has turned, I’ll also mention that I may go out on a hunt tonight for vegetarian buffalo wings. I’ve been a vegetarian for a little more than four years and the one thing I miss most about eating meat is wings. I used to be able to pack away twenty of them in one sitting and knew the best places to get the saltiest, greasiest, yummiest ones of all and would even drive for some distances to go get them. I’ve had to give them up cold turkey (pun intended) after giving up meat, but every Thursday at first-job, the cafeteria serves them. My mouth starts to salivate at the idea of them and I even imagine myself just going crazy and ordering fifty of them and chowing down for hours. Of course, it’s just the smell that gets me and, four years later, the look and smell of the meat itself is enough to make me queasy, but now that I know that such a thing as tofu wings exist, I may need to put on my coat and not stop searching until I find such a treasure.

Before going on this quest, I’ll note that yes, this is what I would classify as a “high” phase for me, which means come sometime between tomorrow and Monday, I’ll feel like hell again, but with that said, I’ll also note that I wrote 514 words today (I might as well have some fun with it.) and I began my interest in buffalo wings after a Google search into what to serve as a side with flatbread pizza Wikipediaed itself on me and sent me into fervent clicking.

I’m a little calmer now that I’ve chatted with my mother, so I think I’ll save the veggie wings hunt for another evening and just satiate my pallet with some organic pizza and more Frasier.

 

Carrot Cake Thursday, April 21, 2011

Filed under: Writing — kaitco @ 11:07 pm
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Walmart sells these small pieces of carrot cake that come with their own fork inlaid with the case of the cake. I love these more than anything and it’s difficult to imagine anything better at the end of my day than watching Frasier, writing a little (which is interesting that I can continue to do with Frasier still playing instead of music) and eating my little square of carrot cake.

Yesterday, I was feeling a little down and just the thought of carrot cake has brought up my spirits.

I wrote 437 words (he still would have lied.) even though I know that I’ve still got to make Dana Barrington fit somewhere in the remaining plot, but I like what I’ve written and I’m glad I got in a little bit of autobiography in Damen.

Tonight, I will continue watching Frasier and have my cake and eat it too. 🙂

 

Selfless, Cold and Composed Wednesday, April 20, 2011

by Ben Folds Five ~ Whatever and Ever, Amen.

I feel like I’m just going through the motions of life right now. I get up (eventually), I go to work, I sit through ten different meetings, I don’t take a lunch because I have too much work to catch up on the afford a lunch, I try to work with my team, I make lists and project plans and then I finally get to a point where I simply can’t do anymore in one day, so I go home, I write a little, I fall asleep in front of the TV or I play some game and then fall asleep in front of the TV and then I wake at 4am, crawl to my bed and go to sleep to start the process again in the morning. At least three days of every week are just like this, I fear that I may not see a change soon.

Sigh…

I wrote 320 words tonight (whispered something harsh to the woman as they passed her.). Nothing super fantastic, but considering my mood tonight, I’m glad I even got to that point. I know that I’m going to have to do some major tinkering with Dana Barrington’s character if I want her to make the final cuts in the novel, but of course, that has to be done on another day. As I’ve said earlier, there’s really time in my average day for anything too in-depth.

Sigh…

 

New Stuffs Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Filed under: Dorienne,Writing — kaitco @ 11:57 pm
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I’m almost in possession of A new car. I’ve wanted one for ages and needed one for even longer. It’s strange to me how everything seems to be falling into place after so much longing and pining and stress. If I could just manage to do the dishes and finish my laundry, I’d be in business. I think I just need to take off one Tuesday and just push through everything I’ve to do…but I probably won’t.

I wrote 277 words tonight (louder for his mother until she came running.) mostly in rush since I’ve left my groceries in the car to hurry to my laptop to get in my 250 words and post. Which reminds me…

 

Even slower Monday, April 18, 2011

Filed under: Writing — kaitco @ 11:35 pm
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I finished Chapter 14 early this morning and spent the bulk of the day writing all the notes for Chapters 15-17. What was originally Chapter 17 is now, Chapter 18 and looks like it is okay to stand as-is, but with all the shifting and re-writing today, I worry about the overall story I have to tell.

For the past two chapters, I’ve dealt with some pretty dark material and it seems that the next few chapters spring out of that darkness into not necessarily light-hearted material, but still not as dense as it had been. What’s unfortunate about this is that after weeks of dark, obscure dialogue and prose, I’m finally coming to surface to breathe and now these latter chapters just seem plain unnecessary. It’s almost as if, since they’re not as deep as their predecessors, they are meaningless. I’m left to wonder what they do to move along the story, which brings me to the idea of Dana Barrington.

Once upon a time, I think I wanted her and Damen to have this My Antonia thing going throughout the second half of the novel, but nowadays, I look at her and wonder what her purpose is. At this point, I’m considering removing her altogether because I see how she fits now and into a single chapter, but I don’t see how she affects the rest of the story and so, she has become superfluous. The problem, however, is that I like her now and I don’t really want to get rid of a character I’ve spent so much time crafting.

I suppose she shows how mean and horrible Jessie is and that Brit actually does get jealous when other girls are around Damen, but what does that mean to the final chapters of the book? If Dana’s not going to help Damen develop into a stronger character by the end of this, then she’s unnecessary. So, now I’m left with trying to either conjure something for her or remove her entirely. The worst part of all is that I know I’ll have my work cut out for me trying to bring her further into the fold, whereas it would be really simple to cut her from this. Decisions, decisions.

Perhaps, I’ve some other notes that go into detail about her significance to the rest of the story, or maybe some inspiration will strike. Maybe she’ll be the happy medium for Damen between Corey and Brit. Maybe she’ll end up signifying something worthwhile…I don’t know.

Even though I probably wrote over 3K words today in all my notes for the next three chapters, I only wrote until I finished Chapter 14, which was 943 words (time wishing he could ask his father for guidance.). I’m not sure how much success I’ll have this week in writing Chapter 15 considering all that’s coming for first-job this week, but at least my outlines are there, so I won’t have much of an excuse to not make 250 words each night.

I’ve definitely slowed in my progress and I think I can see the light. It’s just all the shifting and re-crafting the events in each chapter into what I’ve earlier written that’s causing some issues. I’ll work through it though. As my piano teacher keeps telling, I’ve got to take things slow. If I take it slow now, everything will come together much better later.

 

Slow Sunday, April 17, 2011

I was a bit slow tonight getting to my writing, but what I’ve decided about blog is not so much getting an exact word count done by a specific point in time, but to write consistently each and every night. So, while it took me some time to get there tonight, I wrote 517 words (Corey to turn and find his bus along the line.) and that’s what’s most important.

I surprised myself this evening as I wrote Damen’s reaction to Corey and the n-word. I didn’t have any new “heavy” notes outlining the prose and dialogue for this part, so apart of from breezing over some old notes in what was once going to be Chapter 15, I pulled tonight’s writing straight from the heart.

His reaction was a little stronger than I had always thought it would be prior to today and I wonder if perhaps it was a little too strong. Damen will go through a myriad of thoughts and emotions before the end of Chapter 14, but I know I must be very careful at this point in the novel. As with any character, the urge to make them a little too autobiographical can sometimes appear when characters come to very poignant points in the storyline, but to write a good character is to remain true to what I’ve previously written about them.

In the case of Damen, he’s already said a handful of semi-bigoted words when he was yelling about this or frustrated about that, so it would be wrong to have him look at and judge Corey without also taking a look inward.

What surprised me in the long run though, was how far I deviated from the original notes. Originally, Damen and Corey had their exchange, and Damen walked home analyzing every interaction with Corey in detail, from his first day at the school to right up to that moment. Now, I’ve got some “telling” that Damen replayed previous events, but “show” far more about his reaction to what had happened instead. And, now that I’m planning to bring in his own previous words and actions as well as that of Mrs. Munnerly – his favorite teacher – this scene is taking on new life of its own, to the point that I don’t think it’s right to include all of this in a single chapter. Well…maybe what I’m writing now is fine, but some slimming of the whole Damen-Brit -I’m mad at you, now you’re mad at me, so now I’m mad at you- piece instead…that will probably be it in the end.

Anyway…I know I only wrote 500 words tonight, but those 500 hundred were a long time coming and must really be the most finely-crafted prose and dialogue I can muster since so much of the novel rests upon this point. I suppose all I can really do is just pray about it and know that it will work out in the end.

 

Ordinary People Saturday, April 16, 2011

by John Legend ~ Get Lifted

I wrote 542 words tonight and ended with “Why the hell are you reading a n*** book?” on behalf of Corey. I think this is a good stopping place simply because I’m amused by how naturally it seemed to fall out of Corey as I was writing him and how dirty it sounds as I tried to type it.

This is such a key point in the novel that it’s worth stopping for a moment and coming back to this with fresh eyes as I attempt to describe Damen’s confusion and later horror over what was just said. I’ve got nothing else to add tonight other than this. I just thought it worth mentioning.

 

 
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