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look who’s writing a novel. (that’ll be me)

12 Nov

You read that right. I’m actually writing a novel. We’re a little over 1,200 words in. The goal is to have 50,000 words by the end of November, as part of the challenge from NaNoWriMo. Beyond the challenge, but I have no delusions of grandeur, y’all. I won’t finish. But I’m headed in that direction. All those italics mean 1) I love italics; 2) I’m super excited; and 3) finishing by the end of November isn’t necessarily the goal.

More on Point 3. I’ve had the desire to write a novel since I was 13 years old, when, during one summer vacation, I began a novel about three girls who go on a road trip. I’ve had the desire to write a novel since I was 16 years old, when I began a novel fictionalizing the antics of two pretty memorable boys that were in a few of my classes in high school. I’ve had three solid novel ideas roaming around my head for a million years. You get my drift. The novel has always been the thing. But the novel always ended up on the back burner. Too busy, too in love with writing my short stories, too this and too that. In fact, it was almost like the novel was the pinnacle of my life as a writer, and I wasn’t quite ready to go there yet. Nevertheless, that was the past. We writin’ a novel!

Plot? Theme? What’s it all about, Alfie? I will remain quiet on all that. But I may post some chapters on here as I go. We’ll see. I will say that the whole “write what you know” adage is quite a concept when you actually do it. Sure, aspects of my life and my experience permeate my fiction (it’s all me, really, in some way), but this particular experience is different somehow. It’s almost more authentic, if that makes any sense.

Which one of you have written a novel? Tell me about the experience, please and thank you!

Oh, hi, September.

3 Sep

Back in the day, the dawning of September elicited a pervasive, vomitous feeling in the pit of my stomach, usually accompanied by visions of sitting in Math classes that seemed endless in their confusion and chalkboard hieroglyphics and obsessing over where/who I would sit with during lunch.

Not anymore, ya’ll!

First of all, school has been long over for me, and even though I’ve been contemplating taking a few courses (more on that below), those days are over. I’ll leave the vomitous feeling to the kiddies.

Not anymore...

Not anymore…

Sorry, kiddies. Anyway, the dawning of this September brought with it a reminder to set some proper goals for myself. I have to say that although January starts the year, there’s something about the month of September and new beginnings. Perhaps because summer is ending and autumn will soon come; perhaps because, yes, when we were all back in school, September did mean new beginnings: new grades, new teachers, new avenues of learning and humiliation (Math). Whatever the reason, I usually look toward the horizon when September begins (sometimes literally), deliberating over the new goals and plans to set for myself. Here are a few:

Where I Lay my Head. Having moved back home 8 years ago, I’ve decided to try and get my own place once again. What will impact my decision is 1) what I can afford and 2) whether I’ll stay local, or, after years and years of craving and wanting it, move to California. We’ll see. It all depends on things like employment, cost of living, etc. But by and large, Cali waits for me. (In case you’re wondering, yes, the idea of possibly moving to a state I’ve eternally longed for is beyond exciting. Beyond.)

But Before I Go…I need to clean my room here, the room I inhabit now, the room in which I presently lay my head. Because it is a travesty in there. It’s sad and scary and I think I may have some hoarding tendencies. I mean, there aren’t any dead cats or squirrels hidden somewhere, but I don’t think it’s normal to own that many clothes. So a definite goal, one that I’m definitely executing soon, is to clean the batcave.

The J-O-B. A bit related to Goal #1, but whether or not I move to CA, I need a new job. For my sanity, well-being, wallet, and the general safety of certain people I work with. It.is.imperative.

Stop Fretting Over This Hair. Are you all familiar with natural hair? If not, please visit the Google, and if you like, visit the blog I started last year about my transition to natural hair. I’ll warn you that it has about three entries and I have no idea when I’ll update it. Nevertheless, I’m very much in love with my now very natural hair. It’s thick and curly.

in all its glory...

in all its glory…

And really, really, really thick and curly. A blessing and a curse, in other words. It’s so intense that I’m constantly on YouTube looking up videos on what next to do with it. It’s become insanely a bit out of control. So my goal is to be balanced. To stop being obsessed. To stop trying to make it look like something it’s not. To stop forcing new styles on my scalp every day. To just let it be. Amen and good night.

 

Relax a Little, Won’t You? I shouldn’t have to wait until the last two weeks of August to relax, should I? No. Things like massages and grabbing a weekend to visit a museum and finding a respite won’t be relegated to the end of summer anymore. I need to breathe easy year-round.

Edumacation. As mentioned above, I’d like to take a few classes. Improving job skills, learning something I know nothing about, etc. Ideally, to quote my Pops, I need to learn something practical. Perhaps something I can use to go into a new line of work.

So, a few of my goals as we welcome September. Got anything planned?

peanuts1

your standard, everyday torture chamber.

17 Jul

Some people call said torture chamber a “fitting room,” but I’d like to think that Merriam-Webster will soon come to the light and make the appropriate changes to their lexicon.

Because it is torture chamber, my friends. What else do you call a tiny room where every nook, cranny, and crevice is filled with the kind of unremitting fluoroscent lighting that showcases every inch of your now monstrous body, which seemed to morph into Jabba the Hutt territory during your journey from the clothes rack to the “fitting room”? What else do you call a room where none of the locks ever work, thereby increasing the potential that while you’re bent over trying to pull those jeans up your monstrous body, a mother and her child will walk by and see the horror of it all? What do you call a place where the person who inhabited it before you seemed to believe they were 90s-era Johnny Depp and therefore had the right to trash the place like a hotel room?

Say it with me, yes, yes: torture chamber.

Needless to say, I mostly avoid trying on clothes when I buy them. What? It’s true. To keep from bringing everything back because of fit or color or whatever, I just take forever in the store shop very judiciously. Which means I usually buy a size up. Yeah, yeah, I know, I know. The typical result with buying a size up is that I end up looking like a low-rent gypsy trying to be Stevie Nicks. So the point of this whole diatribe: despite the fact that going to the torture chamber is pretty much walking towards your own doom, I’ve decided to–gulp–try clothes on before I leave the store. Why?

1. It makes sense.

2. The buying and returning game has gotten fairly old, believe it or not.

So, yeah, I’ve been frequenting the torture chamber. It’s not half bad. Well, not really, but let’s not rehash the horrors, shall we? And to prove that I’ve been changing my ways lately (I’m not all talk, you know), here you go:

Bought this sassy dress, by the way.

Bought this sassy dress, by the way.

Bought this pretty blouse, too.

Bought this pretty blouse, too.

Day Five.

5 Apr

Emerald City

And so you chose Emerald City.

Who wouldn’t, really,

with its charming vistas and valleys and all those standalone Starbucks?

Lattés everywhere you turn,

like a giant, dizzying field of poppies?

Here in Kansas,

what can I give you but

barbecues in Auntie Em’s backyard and lemonade stands

and endless, utter devotion?

No contest, really.

I offer stability, you want Technicolor.

Go in peace and no anger from me,

on your way to Emerald City.

(But if I were a different girl,

louder, maybe,

I would stand on that ridiculous yellow road and call out your name,

scream your name so long and so loud that

I’d scare those silly monkeys right out of the sky, I swear.

I’d point out that Emerald City is just glass, honey, just plain glass and it breaks,

and it’s not me,

so choose me, choose me, choose me.)

But I’m not that girl.

And here in Kansas, the fields need tending,

and I have to go.

Day Three.

3 Apr

the passage of time

we’ve run out of conversation,

we’ve nothing left to say.

we cannot abide by talk of the children,

who now wrangle children of their own,

expecting us to play with and to give back,

to babysit and to listen.

and what of those who bore us?

how do we talk of what stabs us in our hearts,

of nursing homes and pain pills,

of loss of vitality and absence of memory?

we’ve run out of conversation,

we’ve nothing left to say.

we let them talk around us,

about anniversaries and births, about time and trust,

about how our lengthy togetherness inspires,

about how we lead by example.

they merely hear their own voices reverberating back to them.

not ours. we haven’t said a word.

and what would you say, if you could?

and what would i say, if i could?

crickets chirp.

the night wears on.

silence.

we’ve run out of

we’ve nothing

fumbling towards style.

25 Jan

I’ve gone from one style extreme to the next: fashion forward toddler (courtesy of The Mother); teenager clad in black all the time; the unfortunate college years, where I think it was telling that my psychology professor noticed my wearing-the-same-jacket-all-the-time habits; the weird 20s, when I volleyed between frumpiness and…frumpiness; and now the early 30s, where, up until recently, I was just kind of functional.

Functional happens. In the process of discovering who we are as indivduals, sometimes we forget that a large part of that involves how we look on the outside. It’s true, and it’s life. Along with the emotional you, there is the physical you. Bouncing around from one style extreme to the next didn’t really give me an opportunity to find a happy medium for the physical me, being that I spent a large part of my formative years despising my physical appearance. Another needless to say truth: self-image/body acceptance affects what you wear and how you want to present yourself. (These days, I wholly accept how wonderfully made and gorgeous I am. It’s taken about, oh, 14 years or so to come to this? But everything in life requires journeying, and this was one of many for me.) As adults and as women, the paying bills/working/my car needs another oil change?/other responsibilities can sometimes blanket everything else. For me, I wasn’t taking the time out to identify my wardrobe, my style. I was wearing whatever I believed fit and/or camouflaged me or whatever was affordable, which meant plenty of sad, loose jeans and loads of polyester. All of this came to a head one afternoon when, as I gazed at myself in the mirror, I realized that I resembled a homeless woman. 

Identifying the Issue(s)

I’ve always hated shopping. I don’t know what matches. I’ve always hated trying on clothes. I assigned these things as completely natural, but when you don’t like your body, the desire to dress it up is a bit like desiring to go to the dentist, right? There is no such desire. This was the main issue. The other things were byproducts of that.

Coming to Terms with the Issue(s) (Reluctantly)

It was time to stop. Stop ignoring the real issue here, that I needed to work on 1) admitting that I had positives to accentuate; 2) wanting to accentuate them.

Long Story Short

Once I laid claim to the main issue and chose to fight it and fix it, a few other things needed to be done. For one thing, color. Black and brown had become my staples for far too long. Another thing, fit. I had to recognize that loose is not really a good thing. Yeah, a few pounds came off and that was exciting, but I’m not Stevie Nicks. She can do the flowy thing. My version of flowy just looked tenty and, well, homeless. The next: I needed to choose a style. There are a zillion style archetypes out there. Did I want to be earthy? Preppy? Sporty? (Haha) Glam? Retro? 

The Present 

Simply, modern and chic is for me. Less Bea Arthur, more me. I love clean and chicness and up-to-date, and that’s the style I want to have. So far, so good. Ultimately, dressing for me, accentuating those nice positives—can’t go wrong, can you?

Oh, and to deal with generally being challenged when it comes to all things shopping, I just take outfit ideas from magazines, or gaze at mannequins like a crazy person in the store. (No, they don’t come alive.) I also try things on, despite my belief that something is wrong with those mirrors in there; I worry less about matching and more about the right look and accessorizing well. So still fumbling towards style, yes, but with far more confidence and optimism than ever before. This is a good thing.

READERS: What’s your style? How did you find it?

I’m Gonna Do It! *gulp*

24 Feb

Ok, so this will be interesting. I’ve decided to sign up for the WordPress PostADay challenge.

What?

Yes, every single day. We’ve had issues before with my regularity. Nevertheless, the past is the past! This is the beginning! I will be posting on this blog once a day for the remainder of 2011, oh, yes, I will…

I’m also promising to make use of The DailyPost, and the community of other bloggers with similiar goals, to help me along the way, including asking for help when I need it and encouraging others when I can.

If you already read my blog (thanks to those who do!!), I hope you’ll encourage me with comments and likes, and goodwill along the way.

Yours,

Girley/lonelypassport

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