I am kaitco

a writer's log

1121 Friday, May 27, 2011

On an extremely personal level, the numbers 11 and 21 hold no specific value for me; 11 and 24 do as that’s Grandma’s birthday, but not so much 11/21. At the back of my mind, however, I see 11:21 in the morning or at night and smile to myself because I remember that that’s the birthday of the wife of the creator of The X-Files and I remember that the numbers 11 and 21 together often appeared throughout the show and, across my later childhood and adolescence, I had always grown excited when I saw 11/21 in some capacity.

I mention this, not to show what a huge nerd I am, but to convey how my mind seems to work. Tonight, I hit “the zone” again where the right side of my brain takes over as if it were another personality out of multiple battling for control of the single host body. The right brain just writes and writes without care of hunger pains, thirst, pain in the wrist, my back, my butt, my chest, my neck, my eyes or even my jaw. The right brain just knows it has prose and dialogue it must release and, once it takes control of the body, no other senses take precedence until the right brain has said its fill.

Once the right brain is done, it almost floats to the subconscious like an evil demon fleeing from a purified body and leaves in its wake a tired, hungry, thirsty, pain-ridden husk of a Dorienne. That said, I did get a lot of writing done tonight and had some great fun researching which “King Charles” of England was the one with all the illegitimate children (it was Charles II) and also reading through about two scenes of Hamlet to find the exact words I wanted to highlight.

Tomorrow will be a long, sad day because the day after such a rush is always a long, mournful one and leaves me wishing that the right brain would take control once again to pull me out of the doldrums of ordinary life.

I wrote 1121 words tonight (“A little,” she spoke to the floor.) and my back hurts so much and I’m so hungry and thirsty and exhausted that I’d like to just crash to the floor out of fatigue, but dare not for fear that I’ll starve to death in my sleep. Perhaps some food and a little bit of Roseanne or a movie followed by wistfully sleeping with Frasier playing in the background…

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Much alike Friday, May 6, 2011

Filed under: Dorienne,Favorite,Writing — kaitco @ 10:39 pm
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Tonight, I realized just how alike my protagonist and I are.

In writing this scene where Damen meets Dana, I started thinking about my own time in high school and how much I hated it. I wanted to leave so badly, but my mother wouldn’t let me graduate after my Junior year and so I was forced to suffer another year in that place, with “those people.” As I thought about “those people,” I remembered that not a week goes by that I’m not friending another one of them on Facebook, though we’ve got nothing in particular to say to each other, which lead to me one of my more recent Facebook Friends. She and I were super BFFs back in our middle school days and as I considered how different she looks now in her FB pictures with her children, I remembered how, more than a decade ago, I drew her portrait in art class and she drew mine since, again, we were super BFFs. I then remembered that I used to draw portraits all the time of random people. Some faces just popped to mind, while others were of people who I may have seen earlier or just liked the way their eyes looked…and that’s when I said to myself, “Oh snap! I’m just like Damen.”

There really are few things that are new under the sun and no idea is truly original. Damen’s love of books…I’m a long-time bibliophile and even though I read the majority of my books via Kindle, I love the feel and smell of all my books, especially the incredibly worn ones. Damen’s hatred of his peers…well, I’ve already touched upon that a bit. Damen’s drawings…it was not until tonight that I even remembered how often I used to draw portraits and how much I liked doing them. The most intriguing thing about all of them were the eyes. Big eyes have always been a great sign of beauty for me, so almost all of my characters whom I deem pretty or attractive are described as having “large eyes” and, when I used to draw, all my portraits would have over-sized eyes. I still see this now when I make new sims for Sims 2. My most beautiful sims are the ones with the largest eyes. I was so intrigued with eyes that I used to sketch them at random; often the eyes of celebrities, but later, it was whenever I saw a pair of eyes that just looked so magnificent, I had just had to draw them. It’s simply fascinating that my protagonist can be so unlike me in general demeanor and appearance, but be exactly like me in so many other mannerisms that make me who I am.

I realized a while ago when I was first writing Damen that I couldn’t actually “see” him as a character. I knew that he was white and that his mother had married a black man and that he was a bit cold to his peers, but I could “see” nothing else and even wrote a note to myself about how I didn’t know who I was writing. It was not until I gave Damen a piece of my own spirit and personality that he began to take shape for me. At the time, I thought I had just given him my sarcasm, but now I’ve realized I’ve given him so much more.

I wrote 773 words tonight (his body as she turned down the hall.) and I can’t wait to write a little bit more. I figure at this rate Damen and I will be nearly the same person by the end of the novel.

 

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.

 

The difference a day makes Sunday, April 3, 2011

Filed under: Dorienne,Favorite,Writing — kaitco @ 11:00 pm
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It’s fascinating what a difference 24 hours can have on one’s body, mind and spirit.

I’ve long-since known that these waves of extreme happiness and depression come once a month, I know when they’re coming and I know when they’re about to end. That said, I’ve yet to find a way to let the rush I receive each month keep allow me to be happy and productive without suffering such a crash the next day, but perhaps, if I put myself in the right state of mind right as I hit the high, I won’t fall so low on the other side.

My pastor said today that a Christian has no reason to be depressed. It’s difficult to remember that through the dark times, but like I said a few posts earlier, I often make a lousy Christian.

He also said something incredibly profound for me which was that folks need to focus on their blessings and not their troubles. Going further he said, we often remember things we ought to forget and forget the things we ought to remember. Truer words are rarely spoken.

On top of that, Pastor also reminded me of the saying that the world didn’t give me my joy and the world can’t take it away from me. This struck a chord since I walked out of first-job on Friday thinking that I had such joy going into the day, but that first-job had managed to completely suck it from me. I swear, it was almost as if his sermon was written specifically for me today.

It’s so easy to remember all the things I want to get done in a day, but likewise it’s so easy to forget that I’m blessed for even having the good sense to want to do something with my day and I’m not so disturbed or shaken that I can’t conceive of doing anything significant with my time.

I wrote 400 words even tonight (the same nothingness that his meager closeness with Tabitha had) and I’m blessed to get them. I attribute a lot of those words to being able to write from my laptop upstairs without having to carry it back upstairs to do it, but mostly due to having spent such a wonderful day just studying God’s word, being in church and spending time with my family.

I’m not sure how I’ll accomplish this, but I need to remember to remember the good stuff. I need to remember that all things will pass, so it’s best that I just make the most of the time I do have in a day. There really will always be tomorrow and, if there isn’t, it doesn’t really matter one way or another.

 

Decisions Sunday, March 27, 2011

I make a lot of stupid choices a lot of the time. Some are born out of a lack of insight while others come from just plain laziness.

I’ve been trying to justify my purchase of a second laptop and third PC since I bought it last night and while I know the immediate gratification it will bring once I bring it home and create the mock television setup I’ve dreamed about for years, I know it was a poor decision to buy now. But, I really wanted it and desired a gift for myself and found it a fairly decent price and with 18 mos zero interest, it feels like a bad decision, even though when I think of it in the long term.

I spent the majority of the day playing games: Rock Band, Fable II and Lego Indy’s demo. I could have been doing so much more with my time, but I played some games instead…and didn’t even get that many achievements on top of it.

I went to sleep last night while baking some mac and cheese. I woke up this morning thinking, “Dang. I forgot to put my mac and cheese in the fridge last night.” Then, I remembered that I had no recollection of even taking the dish out of the oven or even turning off the oven. By the grace of God alone, I didn’t burn down the house, but I wasted ten dollars on the mac and cheese that had been burnt for so long it nearly evaporated – I didn’t really know that noodles could liquefy…

I make a lot of poor decisions often, but today I’m still proud of myself. While I didn’t get to Sunday School for the full class, I made it for the last twenty minutes and even bought myself a new teacher’s manual. I know I’m not ready to teach again, but just being where I belonged was an experience in itself.

I wrote 302 words tonight (I feel her friend’s hand; still warm.), still focused on Damen’s experience with his mother’s drug abuse and even though, I haven’t written over 500 words in nearly a week if not more, I’m not depressed about it. I’m still writing.

I haven’t missed a post in 2011 and I haven’t gone a day without writing in Damen since February 1st. Like I said, I make a ton of poor decisions, but this year, I think I can say that I’ve made at least one right choice.

 

A lousy Christian Saturday, March 26, 2011

Filed under: Favorite,Writing — kaitco @ 11:56 pm
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I added a bunch of my notes from the Notes app to my Awesome Note app today and I was able to see a quick view of all the days where I took notes on my phone during church service. Ideally, I should see consistent organization with 4 or 5 notes per month, but I don’t see that…not even close.

There are huge gaps all over the place, sometimes for weeks at a time and I have no recollection of what could have happened in September 2010. Just weeks and weeks where I had missed church for one reason or another, none of them for any meaningful reason.

Looking at these notes and gaps makes me realize just how lousy a Christian I’ve been over this past year. I’ve got just 41 notes from end of November 2009 through last Sunday. There are 52 weeks in a year and excluding two weeks for Christmas vacations, I’m missing a lot of time.

I’m going to make every effort to make it to Sunday school tomorrow morning. I’ve got to do something to get me out of this slump I’ve been facing for the past two weeks and, if writing in this blog has taught me anything about myself, I need to depend on my faith more often than I do.

I wrote 264 words tonight (Mom,” I say. “Mom…please. Wake up.) and they are part of a very dark part of the story as I delve further into the demons chasing my protagonist. Before I let this slump dive into a full blown depression, I’ve got to stop being such a lousy Christian.

 

Build 2 Thursday, March 24, 2011

Filed under: Favorite,Music,The Sims,Writing — kaitco @ 11:58 pm
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I’ve been playing a game in The Sims franchise for the last eight years and, while I spend the majority of my “free time” playing The Sims 2, I’ve edited my Sims 2 game to play the “Build” music from The Sims 1.

In the first Sims game, when you were building houses or making structural changes to the lot, a very calm piano music would play, though it changed when you went to the “Buy Mode” in the game. I spent countless hours in Sims 1 just building houses because I loved to simply create and listen to the beautiful music.

The Sims 2 brought its own brand of techno-something music that crossed every mode from Create-A-Sim to building and early on in my Sims 2 playing, I changed all the music over to the Sims 1 Build music. After realizing how much I enjoyed said music, I eventually ported it onto my iPod and then iPhone and even added some album art to it. Nowadays, most of the six Sims 1 Build Mode songs create the bulk of a playlist I call “Soothe Me” which I play when I’m in need of something to calm my mind. I also write to that list on occasion as well, which is why I’ve spent two hundred words of this post talking about it.

While listening to a song I only know as “Build 2,” I not only felt calmer than I had all day, I also wrote some really beautiful prose and was so in the zone with it playing, that I re-played it to keep the momentum going.

Tonight I wrote 260 words (and left the table to sit on the floor next to Angel) and I am calmer for it. I have no other desires for tonight, either; just to sit and listen my Sims 1 music and let my mind rest for the night.

 

 
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