I keep telling myself that I’m going to be a good blogger. SUCH a good blogger. One of those dependable, accountable ones who follows a schedule and is all about tidiness and consistency and showing up to appointments on time and remembering to water the plants.
However, as we inch closer and closer to December, it’s becoming more and more apparent that all my good intentions and my attempts at time-management are … kind of a lie.
The reason for this is that oh-my-god-you-guys, Paper Valentine comes out in less than three months! (How did that happen?)
That is SO soon, and I haven’t even really talked much about it, or about writing it, or my playlists or my research or anything, and man—I should really do that.
The other big, demanding thing is that I am currently writing a book. Which, no matter how responsible and organized I try to be, takes a lot of time. Like, a LOT.
It’s due in December, which seems totally achievable and also like I will never, ever get there in time, because I’m at that stage where I can simultaneously feel elated over how unassailably cool this story wants to be, and dismal over how far it currently is from my epic, epic vision.
And then I get scattered and overwhelmed and wind up holding random contests for random prizes. (Which you still have time to enter, by the way! The prizes are really good—I promise. Even though neither you nor I know for certain what they will be.)
So, because I have now officially entered the realm of totally erratic and kind of twitchy, here is some music from my current, title-less, and unassailably-awesome (oh-my-god-I-hope-please-please) work in progress:
Now, use these two disparate things to make up a story in your head!
(That’s what I’m doing.)
Wow. That’s really big news. But the word defeat in your title makes me unsure about congratulating you. So I guess I’m giving you a tentative virtual fist pump?
Hmmm. Songs. Inspiration. From the rhythms and lyrics, I’m getting: southern church revival, WWII Nazi army and Nathaniel Hawthorne. So the story in my head has something to do with running away from a religiously motivated genocide spearheaded by Stepford Wife-esque Zombie Types while trying to rationalize one’s own inferior, sinful and possibly harmful existence in a world that is a dozen or so murders away from being a utopia. The main character might be something like Huck Finn–pulled one way by society, pulled the other way by conscience/circumstance. Probably way off the mark. But this game is fun.
I … totally don’t quite know what to say to this, because it is kind of awesome!
And also—honestly, HONESTLY—remarkably close to what I’m writing, in this weird and essentially completely non-specific way. (Except for the Nazis—those are specifically not there. But everything else! -ish.)
Don’t read this until 12/7 or thereabouts. I don’t want to be a deadline killer/crazy maker.
I’ve actually been on a road trip the last couple of weeks. We spent the first night camping in NE Iowa next to a river and these amazing limestone bluffs. It was actually kind of a frightening night because we got there around midnight and my flashlight kept picking up these disembodied sets of glowing eyes that my partner never seemed to see. The coyotes were a lot closer this time too. Our dogs were totally silent (for once . . . I even tried offering them cookies to bark, hoping that the noise would echo off the limestone and scare off the creatures, but they just ignored me) and just huddled together while we set up the tent. And even when we were all tucked inside, I kept hearing nuzzling sounds on the rain fly. So creepy. But when we got up the next morning (and saw that everything was completely gorgeous and amazing and that even the dogs were thrilled), a bald eagle flew overhead and a perfect piece of snowy white down landed on my partner’s coat. And I thought–THAT’S the end of the story that B.Y. put in my head with her music. (Again. I’m probably way off the mark. But this game is fun.)
Also, have you ever been to Myopic Books in Chicago? I sincerely believe that it’s an entrance to Narnia.
Also also . . . I like having a LED headlamp in addition to an emergency flashlight because it’s really nice to be hands free in the dark. I thought I’d tell you in light of your recentish adventures with windstorms and coffee shops.
Oh, that sounds glorious! It reminds me very much of living out of tents when we first moved to Arkansas when I was little, and how *close* everything was all time (and my mother constantly having to keep after me so I wouldn’t go near the hole where the alligator snapping turtle lived—I always wanted to visit it SO bad!)
No, I’ve never been to Myopic Books! Which naturally means that I *have* to go! I love Chicago and have only been there twice, and seen not nearly everything I want to. Also, for Christmas, everyone in my family gave me various emergency supplies, so now I have a solar-powered weather radio that flashes S.O.S.!
Your early years sound amazing. I camp–maybe–four or five times a year. It’s always car camping, never anything super adventurous and, to tell you the truth, I’m not sure we’re very good at it. I can’t even imagine what kind of skills your family must have had to do it 24/7.
I had to admit internet defeat back in June when my full-time summer grad class schedule began, which has now merged into my teaching internship year combined with even MOAR grad classes and a research project. I am woefully behind on reading your posts (I need to go back to June, to be honest), but I plan to come back one fine day when I’m not writing lesson plans, writing my own papers, or thinking of ways to handle my student who eats popcorn that he hides in his pants. :)
Hope you’re doing well!
Oh, I know this feeling—I know it! Also, so confused (read: curious) right now about this popcorn situation …
It sounds just uncomfortable. On so many levels.
And yes, thank you, I am doing very well! I hope you can say the same :)
Hah, the ‘popcorn in his pants’ reference was meant to entice your curiosity, so I see that it worked. ;) The story is much better when told in person, but here goes the internet version.
Me: *looks across classroom from far side and sees student smooshing some type of food into his mouth* (It is the classic popcorn face-smoosh you see people do at movie theaters so I know immediately what is up.)
Me: *walks stealthily in my teacher-like ninja fashion over to student and come up behind him*
Me: What are you eating, Garrett*?
Garrett: Mmmmthing.*mumble, mumble, chew, chew*
Me: Yes, you are. What are you eating?
Garrett: *pulls down the waistband of his pants, without hesitation, to reveal a ziplock baggie of popped popcorn resting of his left thigh*
Me: *Turning away and stretching out my hand, as if to block the sight* You have POPCORN IN YOUR PANTS!
Garrett:Yeah, but I have shorts on! (as if the fact that he did not flash me makes it all the more reasonable)
Me: I don’t care; there is popcorn in your pants. Pull your pants up and put the popcorn away. NOW.
Nearby students: *giggling*
Me: *walks away trying to not burst out laughing*
*Name changed to protect the guilty.