Tuesday, March 31, 2009


Today, it was sunny outside and about 61 degrees. That's the best weather we've had in my area in a while. So, thankful, I grabbed my reading, repeated twice that Faulkner is a good writer that I should respect, and went outside to worship the sun -- my secret god. (Note: If it can keep me warm, it's my new best friend.)

Okay, so, guilty, I didn't actually get any more writing done today. My life is being turned into a chew toy by Arcadia and so my life has, in turn, decided to beat the living hell out of my writing schedule.

But, for today, I read in the sun and enjoy the weather.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Monday, March 23, 2009

I just have to share this with someone

I won't tell you which I saw


Today, I passed a copy of my latest chapter to two of my beta readers. The notes I received: "Cool" and "you need better handwriting." (Yes, I hand write first copies).

I was a little disappointed, because I was hoping for more constructive advice (Do I really want to keep that paragraph? Was that funny? Does that make sense?) While criticism isn't my best friend, but at this moment a little bit would be useful.

So, I guess what I'm asking is if anyone has any advice on how to set up a critique group. I'd really like to have people to turn to for writing criticism and advice.

Coolest Thing Ever

Okay, while I was in Orlando, I did the coolest thing I have ever done in my life so far. (This either means that I'm young, that my life is boring, or that this really was as cool as I think it was. So far, no consensus.) I say so far in the optimistic hope that I'll do other things equally or more amazing, but it was astounding.

Look at this image.

Okay, see that couch -- yes, the one behind/under John Lennon. They have that couch in the room in the Lennon room at the Hard Rock Cafe in Orlando. I got to sit on it during the tour.

Yes, some might not think this is cool, but I think people who think that are wrong. To quote Joey, our tour guide, "If you don't know who John Lennon is, not only should you be shot, but you probably think it's not as cool." Yeah, it's that cool.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Disappearing Act

So, I sort of fell off the face of the blogosphere this past week. I went down to Orlando with friends (Dear God, I'd almost forgotten what 78° and sunny feels like. It's almost enough to turn me into a heliolator -- sun-worshiper.) It was amazing, and I have learned to love the roller coaster, not formerly a close friend. My buds are all very pleased.

Now, the revelation (aside from the fact that the coasters have ruined me for anything tame :-[ ). Well, I frequently bemoan, when bored, that the cyber-world is leaving me nothing being posted anywhere to read. Well, after being gone for about 5 days, there's a seemingly never-ending supply of blog posts. YAY! Remember everyone: When the gods wish to punish us, they answer our prayers.

Sure, I basically got no writing done at all while I was away -- and I was with my betas so no reading got done -- but it was a great week.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Beware the Ides of March

Well, somone had to say it. So, in case you don't know any Latin nerds, just a warning:
Beware the Ides of March.

Saturday, March 14, 2009


Have you ever written a chapter and thought ick? Or had that pesky feeling that that thing you wrote about twenty pages back was just not quite good enough?

I just finished up a third chapter and am about to chuck it to my devout beta readers. Unfortunately, this chapter is going to be subtitled The One That Wasn't That Good -- I'm continuing to reserve The One That Was Kind of Awful for the second chapter, because it was. I'm going to be rewriting about half of both of these for the second draft.

Yeah, that's my personal preference. I do minor edits at the end of each chapter based on the notes of my betas, but I don't redo the whole chapters until the second draft.

Sometimes I wonder if I'm doing this the most efficient way. One friend of mine just staples lose papers into her first-draft notebook wherever she is, which often lends her notebooks a rather intimidating air. (No, seriously, it's intimidating. I am not even joking). It works for her, but I don't think I have random-stapling in me. What are your preferences, reworking wise? Are there other styles out there?

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Okay, what happened to English?

No, this is a serious question. What happened to the English language? We all used to speak it. I know I'm still speaking. I thought the people I knew were still speaking it. Apparently, I thought wrong.

Today, in rehearsal for Arcadia, we ran across the line "Mr. Chater being engaged in closing the door." In the script it functions as a pun, because Mr. Chater is standing in a stable. But he's trying to close the door after the horse (his wife) has already run away (already slept with another character). Neither of the actors of stage knew that, because they were both, wait for it, unfamiliar with the idiom.
Unfamiliar with the idiom!?!


How does that even happen? Some idioms, such as this one, have achieved a certain level of usage in English writing that they are tantamount to cliches. Writers abandon using them in their traditional context, because they are so over-used. And yet, in a group of maybe ten people, only two knew the expression. Two!
And this isn't the first time I have experienced this. Not too long ago, I used to the expression "avoid something like the plague" -- a simile so cliche that it should be avoided like the plague -- and the person to whom I was speaking just stared at me blankly. He had never heard the expression before. All I could think was, 'My god, what is happening to English?'

Seriously, what is happening to it? Sure, not everyone reads idiom dictionaries when they're bored -- did I mention I really am a loser? -- but these are expressions that are ridiculously common. How did they fall out of peoples minds? How could they have dropped from the general lexicon? What language quake occurred that these once common expressions have slipped from use?

What happened?


Words are fun, aren't they? I just really like words: I like the way they sound; I like the way they look; I like the way they feel in my mouth.

Some words are more fun than others.
- omphaloskepsis: navel contemplation for the purpose of diving the future.
Okay, this word is just too awesome for, well, words. And, frankly, there just aren't enough chances to use it.

-exsanguinate: to render bloodless
It just rolls off the tongue. At least, in my opinion.

-napiform: turnip shaped.
This is another word that we don't get to say enough. Really, it's just that fun. It goes up there with poriform (pear-shaped).

-Supercilious: haughty, arrogant
Rolls off the tongue. At least in this case there's hope of using it in a conversation.

Anyone else have a favorite word? Please, share. Today, for me, is Fun Words Day.

Friday, March 6, 2009


Anyone who's ever had their work overseen by a more conservative body probably knows that pain of censorship, not to mention the annoying angst of wait, can we say that? that comes with it.
Now, I get to experience censorship's manifold joys as we begin rehearsing our new production, Tom Stoppard's Arcadia. The play is witty, hilarious, and deep. Sadly, after reading the script, many of us dread the announcement of which laugh-out-loud lines were going to be sacrificed to the puritanical censors. When my director said that only the F-word would have to be excised, we cheered.
Still, we may not be safe. Arcadia commits some of the cardinal sins of "adult" work.
- It uses real words, the kind people use in everyday life (read: the kind of language the school administration would like to pretend none of us know). Somehow, I doubt they were all hit on the head and forgot that none of these words are unfamiliar to, well, anyone. Still, they probably won't be happy when Hannah is called a bitch. And, I think if someone actually used the F-word, heads would roll.
-In between historical debates and philosophical interludes about the nature of truth and time, Stoppard's characters talk about sex -- the force they didn't teach you about in physics class. The administration lives under the misguided impression that nobody knows what it is. I think they're hoping that if no one mentions it, then nobody will ever figure it out. Too bad for them. I just want to see my administrator's face when they get to the line "the Byron lot will get their dicks caught in their zips." It should be priceless.
Bugger censorship. Who needs it? If someone doesn't like the picture, they should look at something else. Though, since Arcadia, isn't showing anything but the real world, I wonder what there will be left to look at.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Twilight the Musical

Okay, this video actually made me laugh out loud. It's a Twilight parody that, trust me, is priceless.
I'm definitely showing it to all of my Twilight obsessed friends -- and they are numerous.

I don't have the actual vid, so I'm kicking you over to the place I saw it.

For all those who read Twilight and didn't find it better than oxygen: Laughs

Sunday, March 1, 2009

The Bandana Chronicles

Bandana Color: Green

Surprisingly little to be said about the bandana world today. Simple day -- just home and dinner with my family--, so I didn't get out much; ergo, no not-subtle, highly-pointed staring to report. Even the weird waiter at the restaurant didn't seem to have any response. The most provocative comment was from my mother: "you look like someone from the cast of Fiddler on the Roof." Hardly anything at all. My guess: My family is about as inured to the sight of me in a bandana as they are ever going to get -- the day that they never comment is never going to come, in my estimation. The world -- who can say?

Bandana Trivia: Historically, bandanas have been used as a means of identifying members of gangs, certain sexual orientations, or some occupations.