No Writing Today

I can’t write today.  At least, I can’t write about writing.  As a born and bred Okie, the devastating tornado that hit Moore, Oklahoma yesterday still has me shook up.  We always live with the realization that this kind of tragedy can hit us at any time.  It is just our way of life and we tend to grow fairly jaded when tornado weather bears down upon our towns and neighborhoods.  I am guilty of being one of those that run out to see the tornado when the sirens sound the alarm.  But then, something like this happens and we realize just how deadly these storms can be.

Elementary schools are having a hard year so far and I didn’t want to send my children to school today.  Instead, I wanted to fully encircle them in bubble wrap and not let them out of the house for fear of never seeing them again after they leave.  I held each of them close today before they left because you just never know what could happen during the course of the day.  Yesterday was a horrible reminder of this fact.

So today, I am going to enjoy my kids who will soon be home (this will involve more than a little bit of torment for them, I’m sure) and pray for the people of Moore, Oklahoma.  Especially those who unknowingly said their final good-byes to their children or other loved ones yesterday morning.

This writing thing can wait one more day.

God Bless Oklahoma.

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The Care and Feeding of a Writer.

What a writer, at least this one, needs to survive:

1.   Computer with an internet connection.  This is imperative, especially if your printer is on the same wireless network as your computer.  Trust me.  I went without for about 6 hours last night.  I could feel myself turning into a Golem looking for My Precious.  Wasn’t pretty.

2.  Caffeine, caffeine, caffeine.  I cannot stress this enough.  Whether it be from coffee, tea or chocolate, I would say that 98% of the literary world is fueled in some way by caffeine in one form or another.

3.  Experiences.  Be they good or bad, without them a writer is just a hack playing at portraying emotions on the page.  One cannot write about love until one has truly been in love.  One cannot write accurately about betrayal until one has genuinely been betrayed.  And one cannot write about fear without having experienced true terror for oneself or one’s loved one.

4. Imagination.  I write about vampires without ever having been one, obviously.  So for those things that are truly outside of human experience, imagination is imperative.

5.  Motivation.  Call it your muse, or call it your daily goal.  Without it, you are going nowhere and you are going there fast.

6.  Pizza.  Now this will vary from writer to writer, but I think that everyone has their go to food when they are just too mentally exhausted to prepare a meal, but require sustenance to go on.  Mine is pizza because a) I love it. b) It’s relatively cheap and c) They deliver.  What more could you ask for?  Besides the fact you can eat it with one hand.  So I guess any one-handed food would work. Even M&M’s.

6. Sheer fortitude.  It taks guts to face a blank page everyday and create something from nothing.  I overcome writer’s block every single day.  I dread opening that document of whatever story I am writing on that particular day knowing I have to produce or fail to meet my personal goals.  And let down my mentor.  Who is really, really mean and says horrible things about me and makes me cry if I don’t meet my daily goal.  Okay, that last part’s not true.  But the thought of disappointing him me does makes me want to cringe.

7.  Caffeine.  So nice I had to list it twice.  Or whatever.

8.  Booze.  No explanation needed.

What am I missing?

Feed me pizza!

Feed me pizza and liquor!

Crash and Burn: How I Failed Miserably

There is no other way to say this than to come right out and say it:  I completely and totally didn’t even come closethe same ball park of my weekly goal of 7,000 words this week.  Not even by half.  As a matter of fact, my total word count for last week was only 3,319 words.  This means I failed by 3,681 words.  Or if you a glass half full kind of person, you could say that I have 3,319 words more than I had at this time last week.  But I am not a glass half full kind of person.

I have no excuse except life got in the way.  The last half of the week was rife with crisis after crisis, and the weekend was filled with Russian food, vodka shots, a new tattoo (these two things are surprisingly unrelated), a bedroom makeover and two blissful days with no children.  That would have been the perfect time to write, but since I haven’t had a child-free weekend in almost 14 years, writing seemed a little too much like working, so I skipped it.  And now I live with the consequences.

To be honest, this personal accountability stuff sucks.

But, now it is time to stop my self-mortification due too my laziness and get back on the horse again.  Hopefully, 7,000 words will be within my reach this week.  If not, it may be time to reevaluate my goals.  And I’m okay with that.  It’s still a learning process at this point.

photo-4

I am ready.

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