Tag Archives: NaNoWriMo

Na-No-Na-No-Na-No-Na-No-WRI-MO!

The inspiration pic for Our Hero (a model named Luke Armitage)
One of my favorite inspiration pics for Our Hero (a model named Luke Armitage)

Wrote another 1,184 words on the Romantic Suspense WIP that I’m writing with my friend Chel. (She wrote about 3,300 so like… dang.)

Spent a long time googling ways to describe faces. IndyScribes buddy Laura recently found out she has some face blindness; based on how long it took me to describe Our Hero, I’m not convinced I don’t have face illiteracy. Like: WHAT EVEN ARE NOSES. ūüôĀ

And one of the major benefits of co-writing with someone with a different skillset is that I can feel free to type in phrases like…

The bar itself was polished, dark wood, and the atmosphere was REAL CLASSY OR WHATEVER PLEASE FIX THIS.

She gets her revenge when I get dialog with comment boxes over it that say things like “This is supposed to be witty flirting. It is terrible. Make it sound cool.” (I do my best.)

This picture of noses is much less fascinating that that inspo pic of Our Hero.
This picture of noses is much less fascinating that that inspo pic of Our Hero.

And maybe I should’ve put more terrible words in there – I mean, after all, it’s NaNoWriMo – part of my goal is to just keep writing, just keep writing, not to get stuck in an endless rabbit-hole of Google image searches of various types of noses.

And sure, I could’ve just slapped in some filler. I’ve already got Our Heroine responding to him in a way that should tell the reader he’s a looker, and I know that if I get too specific I run the risk of it being like the scene in¬†Pretty in Pink¬†where Andrew McCarthy shows up and I know I’m supposed to think he’s teh hawtness but at the same time I’m actually just like, Uh… him?

But you can definitely go too far the other way. One of my big stumbling blocks tonight was something a little silly, but: I’ve realized that I have a real knee-jerk reaction against anything being described as “perfect.” (This is possibly Twilight-related, as I seem to recall quite a few instances of Edward’s features/face being described as “perfect,” and/or him having ” a perfect nose” etc.)

To the point where I spent about 20 minutes trying to figure out how to describe this very nattily-dressed man’s tie without saying it was “perfect”… I mean, I know a lot of words! My vocabulary is seriously extensive! But… I mean…

It’s a tie.

I only care about it inasmuch as it characterizes Our Hero as someone who dresses very carefully. I don’t even have a color in mind (leaving that up to Chel–the suit is navy, so… not black? IDEK YOU GUYS).

Anyway, I gave up at “the knot on his tie perfectly symmetrical,” but I suspect editing (and/or Chel) will find a way to improve that.

At least, I hope that’s the case…

And I need to figure out how Our Hero thinks about his own hair in the mirror – currently the line (in deep 3rd from his POV) reads,

Running a hand over his perfectly placed hair, he waited to see if Rahul would actually manage to verbalize whatever he was thinking.

So if anybody out there can tell me what a(n admittedly vain) dude in his 30s would think about his own hair in that scenario…

Maybe I’ll ask my husbro.

 

PS–brief shoutout to myself for breaking 10,000 words for NaNo2016!! By rambling about noses to get this blog post up over 352 words… BUT STILL.

ūüėÄ

Share

Kitten’s Got Claws

A selfie that I took this morning right after only 7 of 17 students in one of my classes turned in the major project that was due today.
A selfie that I took this morning right after only 7 of 17 students in one of my classes turned in the major project that was due today.

Well, we’ve reached the portion of the school year where I run out of fucks to give.

Coming up on Thanksgiving, as usual: I’m behind on grading; students are starting to realize that their terrible grades are going to be permanent if they don’t get it together; lots of classes are demanding work from students; behavior is slipping; suspensions are rising; fights are breaking out; and, wouldn’t you know it, there’s a SuperMoon? (I’m not 100% sure what a SuperMoon is, exactly, but I do know that teenagers–like werewolves–react badly to full moons. I am not making this up. Ask any teacher.)

So I spent most of today¬†irritated and full of rage. Which I try to contain. But I know for a fact that I get a little bit snappy.¬† Continue reading Kitten’s Got Claws

Share

The Mushy Middle

luke-cageI’m still watching Luke Cage, on and off, but more and more I find myself playing Dots while it’s on in the background. (Yes, Dots is a stupid game. No, I cannot stop playing it.)

Anyway, I find myself more and more in agreement with one of the criticisms that I had read of the show earlier, which is that every episode is about ten minutes too long.

Don’t get me wrong -there’s lots of stuff that doesn’t necessarily advance the plot that I still enjoy having in there: the musical numbers (which some say remind them of The Bronze) are awesome, the long moody shots to create mood are great, and I don’t even mind the increasingly goofy scenery-chewing of the characters (srsly gettin goofy though with the villain in the second half of the season). That stuff’s not what bothers me. What bothers me is that¬†the plot just… sags. Continue reading The Mushy Middle

Share

mixing it up

At the writing date I had last Wednesday with two friends and fellow writers, my internet-friend-from-way-back-who-recently-moved-to-Indy Chel brought her CD wallet in. This mystified Chelsea, who is enough younger than us that a giant CD wallet full of burned mix CDs struck her as a charmingly old-fashioned item.

20161113_225256
kickin’ it old-school: CD binder edition

Chelsea¬†and I have talked before about making soundtracks as a writing tool; it’s something I’ve been doing since I was in high school (the earliest ones were cassette tapes, but my dad was an early adopter of new technology, meaning we got a CD burner when they were still rarities). Chel and I have been exchanging fanfic and mix CDs with our friend Meach since the 90s, and I used to put a truly amazing amount of time into creating WinAmp playlists (uh, and skins) and mix CDs (often with “cover art” that I drew myself, first-person notes from characters, and on-disc art).

Since having a kid, though, the time I used to put into this seems to have mysteriously evaporated, so I’m extremely rusty; plus, I’ve had a computer upgrade but the new computer doesn’t have an optical drive. But I’ve been using Shazam¬†to identify songs I like and then I’ve been using Pandora, Spotify, and YouTube to follow up. Continue reading mixing it up

Share

(insert blog post here)

goon-squad
the blogger in her natural environment

Well, I’ve done it again–in my household we call it “gooning yourself,” but elsewhere it would just be called “staying up way too late goofing off and accomplishing nothing except ending up overtired tomorrow.”

See why we just say “gooning”?

So, in addition to gooning myself sleep-wise, I gooned myself writing-wise and have run out of time to do either.

I’ll try to redeem myself tomorrow.

Share

ZzzZZzzZ (A Philosophical Interlude)

cast-your-whole-voteWell, we all know that being emotionally drained is… draining, and I’ve basically been too tired today to do… like, anything.

The election’s still got me reeling and yesterday I successfully ignored it and worked on fiction, where I control all outcomes and the good guys (eventually) win, but today I accidentally started listening to NPR¬†and reading blogs and am just… done.

Luckily there’s still comedy.

Me, trying to read Thoreau with 11th grade: And then what if you took the locker out of your binder? Wait. No. Um…
Kid next to me, under his breath: Maybe you need more coffee.
Me, with a sad, knowing laugh: Oh, StudentName, there is No Such Thing as “more coffee.” Trust me. If “more coffee” were the solution to my problem, I would be perfect right now.

So I’m going to go to bed early (read: on time) and tomorrow’s a new day. The sun will come up (partway through my workout) and I will keep doing everything I can in my little corner of the universe to make sure my Black, Mexican, LGBTQ+, female, atheist, and/or disabled students (this covers 99% of my students, btw, without even mentioning how many of them rely on entitlement programs for food and shelter) know that no matter what else happens, I love them and will do everything I can to protect them–starting by helping them learn to express themselves, fine-tune their bullshit detectors, and use evidence to support an argument (that, by the way, is what we’re actually doing in English classes,¬†whether we’re reading¬†Beowulf or¬†The Onion).

Luckily there’s still literature.

Heroes. Satire.

Hmm. Writing as catharsis: suddenly I feel a lot better about charging back into class tomorrow to stomp around insisting to my Creative Writing class that “they / Do not go gentle into that good night” and pulling the American Lit crew, kicking and gnashing their teeth, through the rest of “On Civil Disobedience” (a fortuitous coincidence that we just happened to be dealing with the Transcendentalists this week…).

So, as Thoreau reminds us, we can’t just vote on paper and let that be the end of it. We must do everything we can. Even if it doesn’t feel like much.

Share

Actual NaNo-ing (It’s about time!!!)

So, I know I promised a deep and meaningful post about race & diversity in literature, but let’s just say that I didn’t have the mental or emotional energy for that today. I did, however, write 1498 words of a totally new opening to the old novel I’m working on with my OG writing partner!

Threw a teeny-tiny write-in and got lots accomplished, despite having to feed a toddler and put him to bed for the first half hour or so of writing time.

And the best part? These two ladies will be joining me for another session next week! (& an extra 132 words by writing this cheater post–HA!)

Share

The Edge of My Seat

I wanted to post a response to the Tweetstorm happening surrounding #TheContinent (a YA book with some serious “White Savior Narrative” stuff going on, click that link for a summary) and¬†Jenny Trout’s response (in which she calls out her own use of racist tropes in some of her older books).

But I also want to watch election returns, so I’m probably going to go do that.

I’ll be back tomorrow with some thoughts about how I know #WeNeedDiverseBooks but also: I am a white lady.

Hopefully having survived watching the election returns (rather than posting as some sort of post-election zombie).

 

Share

Luke Cage, Reluctant Hero

luke-cage-1024x380So, I’ve been slowly (very slowly–we’re only on episode 7) watching Netflix’s Luke Cage. ¬†And there are a few things I¬†love about it:

  • the soundtrack
  • the visuals (costumes, SET DESIGN, staging/camera work, that Biggie portrait on Cottonmouth’s wall)
  • the acting, especially by the entire Stokes family
  • Detective Misty! Pop’s swear jar! Charming delinquent youths!
  • the soundtrack
  • the way Scarfe delivers, like, every single line, and also that I’m pretty sure he was the only white person in the first episode
  • pretty sure I actually squeed when Theo Rossi showed up as Shadesshut-up-and-take-my-money
  • seriously though, I tried to buy the soundtrack midway through episode one. WHY CAN’T I BUY THE SOUNDTRACK MARVEL URRRRRGH GET IT TOGETHER PLEASE

Ahem. Excuse me. Sorry about that.

Anyway, despite the fact that there are lots of things to love in this show, I’m struggling with the pacing. Luke’s just… there.¬†Or, as C put it at the beginning of tonight’s episode, “Manifest” (1×07), “Wow. That was definitely the least exciting superhero interaction… ever.” [Gun deal is happening. Luke walks up. Criminals run away. Luke stands still, tells gun dealer he’s taking the guns, it’s over, blah blah blah, that guy runs away too.] Luke just… stands there.

Implacable…

Unmotivated.

Seriously, what does Luke want? Yes, he’s powerful, but he doesn’t want his power. He doesn’t want anything except to be left alone. That’s… kind of a tough sell, yanno?

Spoilers through 1×07 below the cut!

Continue reading Luke Cage, Reluctant Hero

Share