Sunday, July 10, 2016

reading is fundamental

remember that commercial? RIF. advocacy for reading, right on tv. ha.

i told myself instead of "training" to apply for an MFA (i.e. reading my ass off) for the next year to catch up to all the new college grads who've been reading for the last 10 years, i would just read for fun. not work. if it's fun it's not work, and that's just better for everybody.

goodreads is a good place to cache reading progress. it's kind of win-win to me, who has been out of the game all these years, because i get to see my progress and also leave a thoughtful review. that counts as writing practice as far as i'm concerned.

i was watching a tina turner video earlier this morning of her chanting some buddhist chants for peace and calm. is there a chant for writers?

i know, i know, our chant is the lull of fingers striking the keys. this should bring cosmos out of chaos (read Madeleine L'Engle's book Walking on Water sometime) and the well replenishes itself.

my diversion of the moment is the paris review's art of fiction. i love these articles because of the insight into writers' lives. it's almost like a "how to" for me to study.

off to chant.

Thursday, July 7, 2016

About that writing life

woke up early. want to write. don't necessarily want to write the story i've been reading at writer's group. that story seems over. but i want to finish SOMEthing.

so here i am in my journal.

i'm hungry.
i'm procrastinating.

look at me, being all professional!
this is how all pros do it, i'm told.

all the great authors...can't say they ALL didn't have internet, distractions.

i'm just gonna write it and get it over with. i kinda wanna explore my idea for a middle-aged biddies' book club that decides to read bad books like the satanic bible and forbidden stuff.

but i don't know any bad books or forbidden stuff.

has the internet given me ADD?

i need tea.

ok, next scene.

i put my glasses on. i take my glasses off. i have to be able to see the page. i am still operating under the delusion that i need my glasses to "get to work." but i am now at the stage in life of having to take my glasses off to see anything within arm's reach.

my pencil smells like sex. deep. spicy.

now i have to conjure up all the favorite women writers i can think of. imagining them using all their excuses to stop the pencil moving on the paper. stop the keys from clicking. FOR VALID REASONS. (more tea, looking up a thing online, underwear are uncomfortable, something's going on outside, was that a notification on my phone? chips.)

how did they stay on track? maya angelou used to rent an apartment just for writing and sprawl across the bed on her stomach and write longhand for three hours.

tried that. back hurts and i keep checking my phone.

how did erica jong slog thru the brilliant fear of flying? it reads like a stream of genius consciousness.

tried that. i'm dumb.

how did amy tan stay focused enough to do research day after day, when it stopped being fun? how does anne rice stay the course, does she babble drivel in her notebook, does she draw hearts that say "anne + idris elba 4-eva?" or run her pencil along the metal loops to listen to the clicks....

such large and diverse books these women produced, to keep focused on. they're large to me, these books. these women seem like superheroes. how do they do it without grass or speed. being straight-edge is so very boring sometimes.

i'm good for about two paragraphs a day, and of those i can get two solid sentences.

my attention span withers.

i'm still hungry.

i have no personal goal set. this must be my problem. i need someone to tell me when i can stop writing, because...

i'm getting in a canoe on lake superior thinking i might go to the orient, but i have no idea how fucking deep and cold this lake is. that's probably a good thing.

i'll end up in mackinaw city, trading furs.

(and get really tired of fudge.)

land is nowhere to be seen, i'll just keep going.

if i don't sink.
if i don't get scurvy.
or die of frostbite. --- shit, those are horrible ifs.

i'm a voyageur. look at me voyaging.