Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Mai Tai ask what you do?

Daily Stats
Words: some
Caffeine: morning cup + late afternoon cappuccino (and now I have a headache because there was a four hour span when my brain didn't have caffeine and it's angry at me)
Evil Calories: Cadbury chocolate eggs left over from Easter
Reality TV: ANTM

Usually, when someone asks me what I do, and I say I'm a writer, the first thing they say is, "Oh, are you published?" Then I have to keep myself from using the heel of my shoe to gouge their eyeballs out, force a smile and nonchalantly say, "No, not yet." And then it's done. I'm a loser. I'm instantly a wanna-be, hack failure. I usually get an awkward nod tagged with a "that's nice" or "oh, I see". Or, my favorite, I get to hear things like this: "Oh, well my friend Becky McAnnoying-Face just got published. She had agents mud wrestling over her, and her book went into auction and God bought it and now she's a frazzilionaire married to Clive Owen and working on her next book which will instantly save all the starving children in the world..." Yeah, thanks for sharing. Is the bathroom close? I just want to go bang my head on the toilet for a while.

So, I must take this opportunity to give mad props to the waitress at Kona Grill. At my birthday celebration, she asked what I did, and after taking a HUGE swing of the nine foot Mai Tai she delivered, I told her. And I added "but I'm not published" at the end just to speed things up. And she said "Well, you're still a writer!" And then she proceeded to ask all about my writing. So, she's officially on my awesome list. (Don't roll your eyes, you know you want to be on my awesome list too.)

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Land of Confusion

Daily Stats
Words: yes
Caffeine: morning cup + midmorning cappuccino + Sudafed ( I can see through time)
Evil Calories: bagel bites (one step down from hot pockets, people)
Reality TV: box of kleenex

I'm nasally challenged today. It's either a slowly creeping cold or full on allergies. Either way, I gave in and took Sudafed, which basically turned me into a sleepy crackhead. This also happens to be my day off, so I was supposed to get a massive amount of writing done. However, I was making myself crazy because I keep changing stuff. You know, I gotta up the ante. Push the envelope. Think outside the box, and all that other stupid crap the big dumb douches used to say when I worked in advertising. And my normal, non-congested brain can usually handle my rapid-fire changes, but my current psuedoephedrine-ridden brain was totally folding under pressure. It was just running around in circles going, "fire, fire, fire".

So then, in the midst of my brown out, I suddenly decided that my only option was to go way back to the beginning and just start over. This was a very bad idea. Usually by the time I go back to the beginning, I'm done with the end, and am so happy about where the story ended up that I can handle the enormous amounts of crap I must weed through at the beginning!

So I did what any normal person would do. I shut my computer and went to the mall. I worked through my psuedoephedrine haze at Nordstrom. I now have two pairs of wedge sandals and the entire Clinique skincare line. Now I'm less confused about my book because I'm all caught up in trying to figure out what the hell clarifying lotion is.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Devil in the Details

Daily Stats
Words: must finish chapter 17
Caffeine: morning cup so far
Evil Calories: waffles
Reality TV: really, is there life after Rock of Love 2?

When pounding out the first draft of something, my general rule is "go like a bat out of hell". A big part of this is never letting myself turn back to edit. I just leave things as they are and always move forward. However, if I were to die in a freak accident and a loved one found my first draft, they would think I was having bouts of dementia. Names change, characters suddenly appear out of nowhere, unexplained subplots pop up. But the scary thing is, although my first draft looks completely disjointed and slightly schizophrenic, I have everything straight in my head. I know exactly what I need to change or add when I go to do the rewrite. I don't even have to make notes to remind myself.

Now, I know what you're thinking. I'm some kind of brainiac with a super-human memory. But, no. Yesterday I drove to Target specifically for toilet paper and laundry detergent and left with a pair of shoes, fabric softener (which I had plenty of at home), some “lounging around stylishly” paisley pajamas, some cute little hair ties and a bag of Ruffles. No, I have the memory of a flea. But, for some reason, when it comes to my writing, I remember every single detail.

Yes, it sounds a little nutty. But this is how I know that I'm supposed to be a writer. Why else would I have this weird storytelling OCD?

Oh, I also write in my head while I'm not at my computer. And I remember everything word for word when I finally go to write it out.

Okay, now I sound like a creepy weirdo. I'm totally normal, I swear. Well, aside from the voices. No, I'm totally kidding. Sort of...

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Let's NOT Stirr(it)up

Daily Stats
Words: still speechless
Caffeine: morning cup + midmorning cappuccino (mullet dude moved to the Starbucks at the mall. There should never be a mullet at a mall.)
Evil Calories: Lemon yummy cakey thing
Reality TV: Top Chef

No, I didn't dig through some old photos. Or accidentally stumble into 1984. I saw these today at Express. I know the image quality isn't the best, but yes...yes...oh, yes my darlings. Those are stirrups.

(go ahead. take a moment to dry-heave)

Now, people, let's take a moment and just admit that those were a mistake the first time around. There's no need to beat ourselves up over it. It was the 80's. Lots of bad shit happened in the 80's. There's also no need TO BRING THEM BACK! Have we not learned anything?? Mainly, that we should not wear anything that makes us resemble a tube of pork sausage? THESE LOOK HORRID ON EVERYONE! They're actually worse than skinny jeans, which I didn't think was possible. And you know what's gonna happen. After a little while, all the avant-garde stirrup wearers will start wearing them on the outside of their socks. Then before you know it, banana clips will be back and we'll be fighting over Jelly shoes!

This is grim and I refuse to be a part of it. And someone in the Express design department needs to be seriously bitch-slapped. Or, be forced to wear these vomitous pants throughout eternity.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

RWA or nay?

Daily Stats
Words: 1000
Caffeine: morning cup so far
Evil Calories: yummy gourmet truffles I got for my bday that are almost too pretty to eat (I said almost!)
Reality TV: American Idol, Hell's Kitchen (which is getting old, by the way. I still love Gordon Ramsey, but the show is getting tired. Top Chef much better)

I've lived most of my life in denial. I don't really have tiny gray hairs sprouting at my temples. Those are just natural highlights. I don't use the 9 way mirrors in the Macy's dressing rooms because I refuse to believe my butt actually looks like that. And lastly, I have never joined the RWA (Romance Writers of America) because I refuse to believe I write romance.

However, according to the RWA website, there are two basic elements that comprise every romance novel: a central love story and an emotionally satisfying, optimistic ending.

Check. And...check.

Even so, I find myself still fighting it. When I think "romance", I think of a scantily clad Fabio, chest glistening with some Breck-haired woman embracing his groin. But, upon doing further research I discovered something that threw me for a loop. Several of my favorite writers belong to the RWA, yet none of their books ended up with a freaky Italian girly-man on the cover. In fact, all of their books were found in the regular fic/lit section of the bookstore, no where near Fabio's heaving chest.

Last year, I took a class taught by a published writer who made is sound like affiliating yourself with the romance genre was as bad as wearing spandex in public. But I'm beginning to doubt that assessment. And really, I've affiliated myself with far more controversial organizations. I was once an active member of the N.A.T.A.S. (National Anti-Tesh Action Society). We believe John Tesh is alien agent from the planet Echelon and plans on taking over the world.

Hmmm...I suppose there's a possibility that the RWA wouldn't want to be affiliated with me.

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Death by Treadmill

Daily Stats
Words: 1000
Caffeine: morning cup + midmorning cappuccino + late afternoon iced mocha
Evil Calories: waffles for dinner (yes, I'm seven. I was wearing my Wonderwoman Underoos too.)
Reality TV: American Idol

My treadmill tried to kill me. It tried to make me run to death. I don't mean this in a metaphorical sense. It literally went all Christine on me. I usually walk for three minutes, then kick up the speed to a nice comfy 4.5 to run. Well, today, as I was pressing the "speed up" button, it went into some sinister, super secret, deadly Terminator 2: Judgement Day mode. It suddenly jumped from 4.0 to 6. I was forced to run like a mad woman with her shorts on fire, as if I was in mortal fear of my own ass. I tried to reach the off button, but I was too far back on the belt. I was seconds away from becoming my own B horror slasher flick. Any moment my legs would explode in a bloody mess and I'd get sucked under the belt. This is not how I want to die. End up on the 5:00 news. I can just hear it now. "In a freak accident today, a slow, fat ass woman was eaten by her treadmill. She was found in a pile on her family room floor still plugged into her iPod which was blaring Justin Timberlake." Embarrassing on many levels.

So I did the only thing I could do. I jumped. In retrospect, I do not recommend this. Did you know Berber vaporizes flesh when one travels at hyper speed across it?
Currently I am traumatized and am considering dropping my current project to begin work on a book about a satanic treadmill. The title will simply be Shit!

Sunday, April 6, 2008

Pesky Real Life

Daily Stats
Words: CRAP!
Caffeine: morning cup + midmorning cappuccino + late afternoon iced mocha
Evil Calories: curly fries (that sound is my left artery clogging)
Reality TV: Horrid show on VH1 I can't bring myself to say out loud

I had such high hopes for the weekend, but the whole thing has taken a righteous nosedive into the pooper. What right does real life have infringing on my make believe one?? I have a substantial amount of writing to do, yet every time I turned around there was some real life calamity that needed addressing. Now I'm completely behind, and my MC is just sort of standing there in my head with her arms crossed tapping her foot. MC is annoyed with me. How the hell do you smooth things over with the imaginary person in your head?