Archive for category Rants: Life
I just got in to Chicago yesterday, for Fall Break. I’ll be here until late Tuesday night, hanging out with Sarah and our parents, getting winter clothing, putting together a Halloween costume, and in general not doing homework. There’s still so much to do that’s not school-related, though, and I keep having to tell my brain, “No! No all-nighters! We like sleep.” And I do. I love sleep. Sleep is the best, and I could use more of it.
I’ve mentioned that I’m not doing National Novel Writing Month this year. However, this little part of my brain that schedules things keeps trying to figure out a way to fit it in. I wasn’t sure why at first. NaNo is amazing, but sooo stressful. A NaNo-er’s November is like being through an emotional wringer – you go from enthusiam to guilt to desperation, and on to a few kinds of wild-eyed madness which may at the time be confused with an epiphany of near-religious proportions. A NaNo author has very little free time, sacrificing friends and family for the pen or the keyboard. A NaNo author sometimes forgets meals, instead choosing to wonder where the next thousand words are coming from.
This blog post by Alegra Clarke made me realize why I still want – hell, ache – to participate for my fourth year. And – imagine my surprise – it’s the stress, and the odd habits I develop as coping mechanisms. As Alegra Clarke says:
November is an excuse to live on a diet of chocolate, coffee, and crunchy-salty foods. It is a month to fully indulge the habits of my strange writer-self, such as walking down the street mumbling as I scribble notes and bump into lamp posts. It is an opportunity to buy a pretty notebook and a smooth-gliding ballpoint. But more than that, completing a NaNoWriMo forever changed the limitations I had previously placed on myself as a writer.
And it’s true. I like putting other things aside and just concentrating on being a writer. I like the stress. I like the work of it. I like complaining about my characters and plots. I like being part of a community of people who are putting on their writer’s hats, who are treating themselves to that Chinese food because they exceeded their daily word count goal.
I only wish I could do it this year too, even with the grad school applications, the computer science capstone project, the webcomic idea frothing around in my brain meats. I wish… but since no fairy godmother’s going to drop down with a freeze ray (stops time; tell your friends), maybe next year.
My heart feels like it’s going to burst out of my chest at any moment; there’s just so much to do and so much to remember to do right now. I’m excited and anxious and thoughtful all at the same time. My first class of the semester is in three hours or so, and the beginning of a new semester is just as bad as New Year’s for regrets and hopeful glances at the future. It’s a good time for backing up documents, for cleaning my room, for hurriedly completing unfinished work. It’s also a good time to take stock of current projects.
That the school year is a poor time for creative projects has been proven to me over and over again. I can promise that I will dutifully work on a project, but between homework and last-minute get-togethers, my own work tends to suffer. This semester is going to be especially tough, as I’ll be working on my CS capstone on top of the usual craziness.
It’s a safe bet that I will not be trying NaNoWriMo this year.
Here’s where I’m at with my open projects:
Cathy, Queen of Evil – Never made it out of embryonic stage. This project is effectively dead. World-building and character development from this project will be incorporated into Multiversed.
Past, Present and Probable Future – Also awaiting revision of (second?) draft. It is on hold. The main characters are being used in Multiversed. Multiversed occurs after the events of this novel, and thus will have spoilers, so I might discontinue work on this project.
Multiversed – Now has its own project page! Work continues on concept art.
Mark Two – My CS capstone project? TBA.
This semester I will be working on Multiversed concept art; Mark Two planning and execution; and The Mad Scientist Wars. Unfortunately, work on Multiversed may lag, since keeping up on the other two is especially important. Finishing homework, getting a job, and retaining sanity is also important. I make no promises in regard to the last item, though. 😉
I’ve been thinking about what I have left to show on this blog. It’s not much right now – a few quick sketches, and some art. Most of my work has gone into things I can’t show yet, for differing reasons.
Something else has come to my attention – next post will be my 100th on this blog. To celebrate, I’ll be posting once a day for 5-7 days (depending on how much I can dredge up). The theme? ‘Embarrassment.’ As in ‘I should be embarrassed of these but I’m not really’. I have some artwork that shows how strange my mind can be. I also have some that are vaguely NSFW. They aren’t smexy-bad, or violent-bad, but my own prudishness will never allow them in my DeviantArt account. In fact, after I post them I may pretend they don’t exist, we’ll see. Regardless, the posts should be amusing for other people (and quite possibly agonizing for me).
I have to be away from my laptop for a few days, so posting will begin Monday.
In the meantime, have an old Psychonauts-inspired doodle.
Frak me, I’ve sooo fallen behind on this site. Long story short: spring semester ended; I didn’t go back to Chicago and am currently looking for a job in Des Moines.
My problem with joblessness is that I feel useless and unqualified for everything, and I have a (okay, much-greater-than-usual) tendency towards moodiness. Thus, my logic becomes severely messed up. I’ll devour webcomics but refuse to touch video games. I’ll make commitments to better myself, yet fearfully stay silent on the commitments that I most want to make. Why does my brain decide I’m a slacker if I do some things but not others? I really have no idea.
But I have an interview tomorrow, and despite all the panic attacks and dark moods I’ve been having, I feel like the metaphorical clouds are opening to reveal a bit of sunshine. Whatever happens tomorrow, I want to fully return to the interwebs while it still feels right to do so.
Tomorrow is shot, but there will be a full post on Friday.
I forgot about this habit of mine. When I come home from college, I’m greeted by my parents, my sister(s). I get bowled over by the dog; I stay up late talking; I am usually offered leftovers. I expect this, long before I start thinking of packing. It’s routine, and it’s comforting every time.
But there’s another part of the routine that I’ve always forgotten. That’s when I’m standing alone in my bedroom for the first time in months. I put my bags down. I look around. And then I grab books off their dusty shelves and thumb through them.
I surf sentences at random, smiling at familiar characters or scenes. Eager me, grasping for familiarity of tone, of expression. Old friends. These books are my old friends.
Sometimes I wonder why I bother keeping all these books around if I don’t reread them often. They don’t get lent out, either, since most stay in Chicago rather than travel with me to Iowa. But when I came home over a week ago, I realized that this was why. These books have been loved, and they are loved whenever I pick them up, even if it’s just to feel their heft, their yellowed pages and bent bindings. The merest sentence can send me back to when I was a kid. It can whisper hello. It can embrace. These books are home almost as much as the house they rest in.
How is it I’ve always forgotten about this?
I am sick myself, now. Considering that for the last couple of days I’ve woken up feeling worse than the day before, chances are good that I’ll be skipping class tomorrow. I’m going to do my homework anyway, just in case. I will also call my sister Danielle, since she will apparently not call me.
But after that? I catch up on Mad Scientist Wars. MmmMMM, good.
I was actually able to implement the change I talked about in my last post (which feels like forever ago, fer serious). I toned down the procrastination and got my homework done on time pretty consistently. And then, if I had time, I’d either sleep, or snog Dan and then sleep.
Not all has been well, though. I haven’t been writing, I haven’t been drawing. I broke down a few times due to anxiety about exams and my inability to be social (I know it’s stupid, I’m a lot better adjusted for society than I used to be, but it hits me sometimes nonetheless). My grandpa went to have an operation, and was found to have cancer, which spread itself throughout his body before they could remove the tumor. My grandma (on the other side) wound up in the hospital as well, thankfully for less serious reasons.
There has been a lot on my plate lately. I don’t think that’s an excuse for neglecting… well, everything else. My writing and art. This blog, MSW, DA, Facebook, AIM…
I want to say I’ll be okay from here on out, and that I can post again and be active. However, I’m not sure if I can make that promise. I’m all right for now, with midterms over and anxiety soothed by good friends. But I know me, and I know life, and I know this can all change in an instant. I thought I was okay last time, too. I ended up disappearing off the face of the internet.
So I can’t promise anything substantial. I can say honestly that I will try to integrate my creative and social endeavors into my schedule. I miss that, and I want so badly for that to be normal again.
Wait. I’ll be here.