Forecast: Greater Word Counts

Hullo, all.

My fingers are getting lots of exercise, and I’m beginning to get back into the swing of things. It’s taking my mind a little while to rewire, though. Writing is a habit just as much as it is an art, I think, and when I haven’t done it for so long, it takes a little while to remember how it feels.

Of the many things I’ve missed, one is being able to read what I’ve written. I know that sounds narcissistic, but it’s true, as well. I take a deep satisfaction in concrete things, and being able to see what I write in a tangible block, either on paper on a machine, makes me think that I’m actually creating something, instead of just some fancy ideas.

I want to do more stuff like this—creating physical things. More than just writing. Dad has a wood-working shop downstairs in the basement. It’s not the New Yankee, but it has enough equipment that perhaps I could make something neat. I think that over break, I’ll talk him into showing me how to work with wood. I have an old chess set that is missing pieces. I think it would be neat to be able to turn my own pieces out, and use them. That would be very neat.

I’ve been reading Neil Gaiman’s blog recently. It ranges in topic, from simple Q&A to talking about the writer’s lifestyle. Today, this was posted:
Dear Neil,
I read your site everyday, and STILL I’m not a famous author, what am I doing wrong?

At a guess, either you aren’t writing enough, you aren’t finishing things, you aren’t getting them published, or, if you’re doing all of those, you’re worrying about the wrong things. Anyway, famousness is probably about as useful for an author as a large, well-appointed hiking backpack would be for a prima ballerina. Honest.

It makes me realize something I already knew. I had misplaced the thought for a little while this semester, but I think I’ve found it again. As a writer, my duty is to write. Spending too much time worrying about whether what I write is good or not isn’t going to be helpful to me—not if it gets in the way of my actually writing something. I need to write first, and make sure it’s good second.

I want to spread my work around more, too. Does anybody know where I could find some contests for short fiction? Or perhaps poetry? I just turned twenty one, I’m an adult now. I hope to start being able to get small works published, soon.


Back again

Hullo, all.

If you’ll notice, the last several times I’ve posted something, It ended with fancy promises of ‘oh, I’ll write again soon.

That was more than two months ago, thus establishing, once again, that I am a liar. My semester has been less than ideal, but that’s okay, because it’s just about done. I’ve got two weeks left, and then finals.

I suppose I should actually attempt to give a report of my life for the past little while, but I’m not going to. If I get all bogged down with writing about what’s happened, I’ll never be able to write about what’s happening. I’ll give a few little bits, though. Cassie started writing again, and so that inspired me to get my lazy bum off the couch and hit the grind too. Plus, I just turned 21, which makes me feel like perhaps I ought be more responsible.

It’s the first time I’ve written not for class in some time. It feels good to feel my fingers running across a keyboard again. It’s something I don’t really pay attention to anymore: the way my fingers move when I write. I learned to type properly—the old fashioned way, with a towel over the keyboard, so that I had to look at the screen while I wrote. It was torture to learn, but I’m glad for it now. I’m not used to it, because in the few words I’ve written so far, my joints are already starting to ache. I remember in high school, I’d be able to go for marathon stretches—hours on end without pause, just cranking out stuff that, in retrospect, was pretty darn bad.

There’s something to be said, though, for writing bad things in great amounts. A feeling of accomplishment, if nothing else.

Artifice.exe, for those of you who are interested, is progressing nicely. I’ve almost finished the second paragraph. In fact, I have to say, I haven’t touched the bloody thing since I last wrote. I ended up rewriting The Trick to Fish for a fiction class. I like it better now—it’s a bit more fleshed. But mostly, that’s all I’ve done.

This semester is almost over. I can’t wait for break, because I’ll get to see family, and I’ll get to relax. I have a number of very tough classes this semester, but they’re almost over, and I can go with a number of lighter things next semester. I hope.

Hopefully, I’ll be able to start up again. I really want to achieve that sort of drive for wordcraft that I had in highschool, where my enthusiasm overcame my fear of screwing up, and I was able to write unabashedly. I want to be able to do some new things, and college isn’t helping.

Terry Pratchett didn’t go to college. Neither did Neil Gaiman. Instead, they just read a whole bunch, and actually learned things. I’m pretty sure that they got the better edge of the stick. Instead, I’m paying for education, and fighting it every step of the way. S’terrible. Speaking of fighting education, I have to go and pretend to do my German homework now. My final test of the class is on wednesday. Then I’ll not have to worry near as much. Two weeks left, and then I’ll be done for the moment.