Am I turning into my character?


Who out there in writing land has felt as though they turned into their characters or one of their characters?

I realize that a lot of what we write, we take from our own personal experiences.  I get it.

But my character has been creeping too much into my head lately…and too much into my life!  Yes, she was initially inspired by me…because that’s what I know.  After exaggerating her personality and thinking about her life and thought process and adding new idiosyncracies, I feel as though I am taking on her traits.  It is consuming me…which is either a great thing for writing or an awful thing for my brain.

Is this how method actors feel?  How do they become like someone else and then snap back into themselves when their movie/show/whatever is over?

I AM Abraham Lincoln, dammit.

Is method writing a thing?  It must be…everything is a thing, it seems.

The silver lining…is that I created this person.  I can make her into whatever I want.  So if I need to improve my disposition, I’ll just improve her disposition.  I’ll have her turn into the sweetest, funniest, friendliest mother fucker I can think of and change everything about the whole story.  Because I can.

Hell, maybe the prize patrol will show up at her door with a giant check and balloons!!!  Maybe then life will imitate art??  Right?

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Things that make me think I can write better


When I’m trying to be a productive writer, and I use the term writer quite loosely, there are a few things that I like to use to trick my brain into being more focused….and hopefully more creative and clear.

*Eddie Vedder radio on Pandora (this is an obvious one…obviously!)

*I wear shoes.  Yes, I wear shoes.  It makes me think that I am going to work, and am therefore more productive.  Sometimes I’m snuggled up in a blanket at 1 a.m. with shoes on.  It’s a tough job, people.  The struggle is real.

*Hoods and scarves.  I cocoon my whole head up so that only my eyes can peek out.  I like to think that it keeps the creative juices warm and toasty and traps them so they can only escape through my chubby little fingers.

*Candy…love a good sugar buzz

*Caffeine…nothing helps out that sugar buzz like a little eyeball-popping caffeine.  Lately, I’ve just taken to drinking a double shot of espresso.  No latte, no cappuccino, no americano….just gimme the good stuff.  It helps my fingers type faster and with much less precision.

*Yellow legal pads, post it notes, and my favorite rollerball pens.  Sometimes, simply shopping for these items and never opening the packages is helpful in writing….it encourages that intention to write something important.

*Cooking something in the crock pot.  This one is huge.  As a mother and wife and general do-everything-in-the-household type of person…it really helps me focus when I know that dinner/lunch/whatever is cooking itself.  Multi-tasking at its finest!!

*sometimes I venture into Twisted Sister radio on Pandora too…for a little energy boost.

 

Writing is hard


Holy shit.  Writing is hard.

Blogging is easy.

Writing…like real, honest to goodness writing, is super fucking tough.  You know it, I know it, every non-writer and writer out there knows it.  We read and dissect and criticize, but we all know it is really fucking difficult to have an idea in your head and to flesh it out onto paper with words that make it come alive in another person’s head.

It’s like eating a spoonful of alphabet soup and not being able to make any of the random letters make any sense…because you realize you can’t even read!!

…you know, I can’t think of any more clever phrases that writing is like…because I’ve spent the last 7 hours thinking that I made some headway on my project.  When in reality, I have about 3 paragraphs.  3 pretty decent, descriptive paragraphs, but 3 paragraphs nonetheless.

What’s the last thing that you wrote that made you excited to write but the creative process kept slowing you down??

performance anxiety


So I’m all enrolled in my online Screenwriting class!  I received all my information and my first week’s assignments.  It feels pretty fricking great to have a legitimate project to work on again.  I think that I work  much better when I have a small amount of creative guidance, prompts, and deadlines.

Deadlines for sure.  Deadlines = discipline.  I work well with a small amount of pressure.  Too much and I pretty much just drink coffee to the point of migraines.  I also have ridiculously high standards for myself and typically will tear out all of my eyebrows mulling over the mundane details even before I begin.  The hairs fall neatly onto my yellow legal pad with one sentence written, scribbled out, and rewritten another way with a few bullet points below it.  Bullet points that turn into stars.  That’s the beginning of what some people call: the creative process.

Others call it procrastination.  Others might call it writer’s block.  Others, still, might like to call it ‘Don’t quit your day job because the scratches on this legal pad ain’t never making you any money.’

At any rate, I’m at a loss.  I have many ideas.  I have tons of inspiration for characters.  I also have many silly situations that I could use in a script.  Believe it or not, I also have things that I could write about that aren’t funny at all….things that are actually quite serious and deep.  Its true!  At this moment, I’m pulling my eyebrows out over genre!

Genre!  **silly side note, my brother and I always cracked up at the way Alex Trebek pronounced genre…it sounded like shawn but with a g-like and z-like hum to it.

I was set!  Here, I thought I was only interested in writing humor and comedy scripts…and now I’m trying to get all mushy?  What is happening?

If I start talking about writing action movies with Liam Neeson…please put me out of my misery (love you, Liam!).

Tortured


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I was reminded today, of this red notebook filled with my own poetry.  Poetry that I wrote between the ages of 15 and 18…probably on my bedroom floor, listening to Pearl Jam really quietly.  I was probably writing them by the glow of my maroon lava lamp or by candlelight.  It was probably between the hours of 11 pm and 2 am.

I knew it was tucked away in a storage bin in my basement with other samples of writing that I’ve saved over the years.  I had to get it out.  I had to read it.  I thought that I would find some diamonds in the rough.

I gotta tell ya, I found a lot of rough in the rough.  Seriously, talk about teen angst.  I had a lot of anger to express about something… I actually made a lot of it rhyme.  It was all pretty bad…and actually really depressing.

Here’s a gem for you:

Never…by the brain of kate circa 1997

Any love so bold and true, could never compare to the love I had for you…

Any hate as strong as steel, could never compare to the hate that I now feel.

Wow. Intense!  How about a funny one??

salsa…by the brain of kate circa 1999

My mom makes the best salsa-

-she can’t dance.

For Maggie and Rita and Sarah


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I got new Doc Martens! They’re red…as you can see. I shouldn’t have gotten them, budget wise.

But I was at the mall…and they just called out to me from across the walkway. They looked so sad.  They looked like they needed new feet to call home.  They needed me!  How could I just walk away? How could I just turn my back on them? Have I no heart?  Have I no soul??  I mean, they match the new Pearl Jam album…

Needless to say, we’ve been living happily ever after.

On another note, Tremors 2: The Aftershock is mildly entertaining but not nearly as good without Kevin Bacon.  It’s like Ghostbusters without Bill Murray. It’s like Aladdin without that Gilbert guy as the parrot voice!!  Not the same. 

On another note, during the viewing of this film, I may or may not have eaten most off the chocolate bars from the children’s Halloween candy.  Those Twix bars stole my heart too.  They needed me!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 

And I needed them.

And did you know there’s a Tremors 3?? Not sticking around for this one.

Snack obsession


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Popcorn! 

Not that chemically flavored, fat, microwave junk (which is delicious sometimes, I admit)…but homemade stovetop popcorn!!

I’m obsessed. I’ve made some every day for the past 4 days. I had to buy more kernels.  I will tell you, buying kernels in bulk is so much cheaper than that microwave stuff anyway. And tastier…because you can control the taste and the sassy factor. 

So I use a medium sized pot. I cover the bottom in coconut oil and a layer of white popcorn kernels.  I’d say it’s about a quarter of a cup of kernels.  Enough to almost fill the bottom but not too many so they overlap each other. 

You don’t want it to overflow! 

You need a cover too.  Otherwise your popcorn will fly all over the kitchen and burn your toes and arms. 
Crank up the heat and wait until you hear a pop.  Shake the pot around a bit.  Then those pups will really start popping.  Once the popping slows, shake around again and turn off the heat or it’ll burn.

Done. Takes about 5 minutes.  Salt it right away so it sticks to the oil.

Enjoy while warm.  Enjoy 7 days a week.  I know it sounds like a pain in the ass to make, but it really isn’t and it’s fun to watch the little fluffies fill up the pot.  Plus coconut oil is way better than that yellow, chemical sludge that is slathered on those microwave bags. Sick

Pink pee


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I seem to only post my pink juices.  It’s the beets that make them pink.  There’s another thing that beets turn pink.

Your Pee.

It can be a touch alarming the first time.  You wonder if it’s a hint of blood. You move into panic mode and try to decipher what could possibly be wrong with you.  Kidney stones?  Ulcer? Digestive tears?  Cancer???

Oh, it’s nothing…just the healthy beet juices. 

This pinkalicious juice is beet, beet greens, cucumber, lemon, apple, and watermelon with rind.  Super tasty and sweet. 

Hackers


I just want to use a computer and not be harassed by advertisements and pop ups. It’s sickening, really.

It’s sad that we’ve all become accustomed to this.  I think my children have clicked on one too many pop up and have allowed hackers in. 

The home computer is on lock down.  Thankfully I have a smart phone, a brilliant phone, a genius phone!!!  It’s only a matter of time before this is hacked and useless too. 

Spirits lifted


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Because of the crabby nature of nearly the whole month of March, I have royally fucked up my year of ‘fuck it.’  March is nearing the end, and hopefully we will be lucky enough to have some sunshine and a little warmth.  I need some natural Vitamin D stat!

Here are a number of things that I have been focusing on to lift my spirits as of late:

*This dog.  What a great heating blanket she makes.

*An email from a bestie entitled ‘To cheer you,’ containing obscure rants from an evening we spent together in 2010.  Literary snacks included in this email:

Scat on the flute—-> spoken beat poetry

You can be the girl singer, I’ll be the dude

Roll tumbleweed roll, roll across my heart

*Lovely #1 turning 8 whole years old.

*Lovely #1 wanting to rollerskate for her birthday party

*Rollerskating myself.  Only fell down one time…and then it was just like being 7 myself, rollerskating in the basement listening to MJ’s Bad album.

*Lovely #1 starting junior roller derby in 2 weeks.  Kick ass little lovely!!

*Eddie Vedder….obviously.

*This band a friend of mine took me to…not quite post sickness, to cheer me…called Drew Holcomb and the Neighbors.  It was just what I needed.  A little bluegrassy and fun…and we got to meet them after because there were maybe 40 people in the whole place.  Check them out if you like.

*Justin Timberlake.  I admit it’s not quite my style, however I’ve had a special place in my musical heart ever since Justified and that catchy song Cry Me a River.  I went last Thursday to get the new 20/20 cd.  Sold out.  I went for wrapping paper Saturday and it was there.  Score.  Then I almost lost it in my car cd player.  Many crabbies would’ve happened.

*fried chicken.  Ultimate comfort.

*Faking it.  Fake it until you make it.  Chances are…before you know it, you’re crabbiness will have faded and that fake smile will have turned into a semi-real one.

*some strange tv show called American Ninja Warrior.  These super humans compete through insane obstacle courses…I think, if these people can do this, I can at least overcome a little crabbiness.