Posts Tagged ‘long hand’

Hello Again

August 2, 2020

It feels like forever.

And it has been awhile.

But I am still here.

Still writing, though not so much on this platform

I have missed it, but I have also been too tired most days to log in and write.

I write in the mornings still, long hand, my three page a day habit, thank you The Artists Way, thirteen years and still going strong.

I have thought about this though, my blog, the thing that I would do religiously come rain or shine, good day, bad day, nothing really happened today day.

I sort of had a nothing happened today day, with highlights of, this is surreal, though I’m used to it.

Sort of.

We’re still deep in the pandemic and although it’s been five plus months now, there are times I’m still caught off guard with the strangeness of it.

Or that I am estranged from my friends, fellows, family, colleauges.

Oh the desire to hang out with friends at a coffee shop.

Although, truth, I did sort of last weekend.

I drove up to the Russian River area with a friend, one of the few people allowed in my bubble, and we did get coffee at a cafe in Guerneville.  There was no sitting inside, though, grab and go.

So many things are shut down, but when I get the chance to go to a cafe or a restaurant I have done so.

It happens quite infrequently.

I do better weathering things on my own.

I have been very safe and very cautious and kept pretty to myself since this has all been unfolding.

But yeah, a trip to the Russian River and being out in the sun felt extraordinary.

It’s not a big deal typically, but a bunch of months of quarantine and I felt like I was playing hooky, albeit wearing a mask, from the pandemic.

Also.

Just getting out into the sunshine was so good.

San Francisco, got to love her, has been having her typical “summer weather” which is cold, foggy, overcast and quite dreary.

Add that to the general malaise of the pandemic and it’s a bit depressing.

So when my friend suggested we head out of town and get some sun I hesitated, I have things to do (homework, prep for teaching, zoom meetings), but folded as soon as I googled the Russian River and saw the trees and sun and water.

I’m glad I did.

I am also grateful for getting out of the city.

I haven’t been outside of the Bay Area since before shelter in place.

I realized the last time I had gotten out it was Christmas when I went to Paris.

Now, that’s nothing to shake a stick at, but it also meant that I hadn’t left the city in over six months.

I don’t, fyi count Oakland, Berkeley, or Alameda, all places I have gone to, as getting outside the city…they just feel like continuations of it.

Though, San Francisco is definitely in transition, it is still the city, and once in a while to appreciate the city, I need to leave it.

I will go up one more time to the Russian River before summer ends.

Just a quick day trip to work on some teaching prep the weekend before I start teaching Psychodynamic’s.

I’m not exactly excited, truth be told, I haven’t felt like I’ve had much of a summer–my private practice therapy business has been full (and yes, I do know how lucky I am to have work to do) and I have been doing so much psychoanalytic theory reading, my brain feels about shot.

But.

I have finished, as of today all the books that are required reading for class.

I also, I haven’t shared much about this, turned down the core faculty position I was interviewing for.

I found out how much work was expected and how little money was being paid for it and I changed my mind about wanting to work for the school–I was making more money as a private professional nanny then what they were offering for a full time core faculty professor in a master’s program.

No thank you.

I kept thinking to myself that I did not work this hard to keep working harder for less money.

I felt bad, for a moment, when I told my individual supervisor who really wanted me to take on the teaching position, but I realized if I had taken it I would have been terribly resentful with myself for taking on so much work.

Especially since I am still working on my PhD.

It’s been a minute since I’ve been here, so I cannot recall if I have written about that the last time I was blogging.  But.  I have made some progress there.  I have my external third committee chair member and she has my dissertation proposal as does my internal second.

So.

I await their critiques and get to start working on a Power Point (ugh) to defend my proposal.

Once I defend the proposal I will move into PhD candidacy.

I am ready for that.

I am hoping that I will get to defend by the end of this month and then turn around and start doing the study part of my dissertation.

My hope is to do the study this fall and then do the writing for the dissertation in the spring.

I want to put in one more year and be done.

In fact.

That is my goal.

One more year at the school working on my PhD and teaching one master’s class, then I’m done.

I’ve been on this track for five years now.

I’m ready to finish it.

I have it in my sights and I am hopeful that I can put down my head and push through this last year.

I suspect things are going to be challenging with the pandemic continuing to rage and whatever weirdness is up and coming with the pending elections, but I shall keep busy, keep pushing and get through.

And.

When it’s all said and done and I have my doctorate.

I am going on a big fucking trip.

I’m thinking fly from San Francisco to London, train to Paris, then train to the South of France, rent a car there and tool around and then reverse the trip back.

Two, maybe three weeks.

That’s a carrot to work towards.

Seriously.

And Then There Was This Little Thing

October 25, 2013

Called writing.

Man.

It just keeps coming back and I keep checking in with it and yup, fuck me, I am still a writer.  I didn’t suddenly become a tax accountant overnight, or a lawyer, or a pediatrician.

Ha.

A grateful writer, a, shall I be generous with myself, a prolific writer.

Shall I be honest?

A decent writer.

Maybe good at times, in moments, there are places and spaces I shine.

I have gone back and reread something and thought, you know, that’s not too bad.

And I am not looking for a compliment, nope, I am just thinking out loud here as I got a chance to write two other times today, yup, getting into the practise of when that will be a regular occurence with me, writing three times  a day–the morning pages in the morning, the new novel in the late afternoon, the blog when the day is through.

A habit I established in Paris, but I was not working full-time hours and making the time seemed crucial and death-defying and terrifying, like, listen here, bitch, you came all this way to sit in cafes and write, you better do it now.

NOW.

Scary, putting that kind of pressure on myself.

Oh, a little delicious too when I think that I basically gave myself a six month experience and now have a fodder of journals and notebooks, notecards, postcards, and letters to refer to, not to mention thousands of photographs, to look back on to pull from to write my next novel.

The days are ticking down and I am really going to give it my all to write this novel.

Fiction.

I still cannot believe that I am going to be writing fiction.

I think it will actually be really good practise for me as I plan on revising my memoir so that it reads more fiction and less me, I haven’t thought of that character as me in so long that what I need to do is separate myself even further from it and let it all out.

Not be afraid to get really crazy with it.

The really crazy is right there for me to run with.

I await my friends edits and look forward to re-working it.

And of course, doing this new piece.

Which, uh, sigh, I have decided to write on my lap top.

I will be hauling this baby around with me to do the work.

After more research on the nano.wrimo website (which, fyi, is shite, really people it is not a comprehensively useful tool for me, I have already spent too much time trying to navigate through it, redesign that sucker, please) I need to be able to upload the work to their site.

Not that I couldn’t take the damn challenge and just write it in a notebook.

But when playing baseball you don’t use a softball, I am going to try to use the site the way it was, poorly, designed and upload my novel from my computer to the website.

I will be better able to track my word count and that seems to be a big part of the challenge.

I have already had the thoughts, which I know better than to believe, that I won’t have enough words.

Jesus fuck.

I have the words.

Whether or not they are great words is not even debatable.

They won’t be great words.

The book will be a rough draft, not a polished, edited, publishable piece.

The point will be to sit down and do the writing, which, when it is boiled down to it, is the most challenging thing.

I keep going back to this idea that I heard from an old room-mate who was a musician that a master musician is not necessarily the person with the most talent, but the person who has put in the most time on their instrument.

He said that it was generally acknowledged a master was someone who had spent about 50,000 hours with their instrument.

Now, I don’t know exactly how many hours I have spent writing over my life time, but I can say, that I have written daily now for five years.

Twice daily now for four years.

That is nothing to sneeze at.

I keep doing this and eventually something masterful will come out from it.

Like it already has, the experience, the joy, just the great leaping unknown of sitting down in front of the blank screen and wondering what am I doing here again and what am I going to say and then, there it is.

In no particular order.

In no particular way.

Love.

Writing.

Life.

Me.

Words that define me, outline, enliven me, connect me with my humanity and desire to be a better person in this world, to live a better life, to be remarkable, remarkably me.

I sound like a god damn pansy ass, but fuck you, I don’t care.

The marvellous life that I have been granted just because I consistently set aside time for myself to put pen to paper or words to screen, I cannot deny myself that.

You don’t have to read this.

Although you might miss out when I talk about sex.

Ha.

Now, when I am sitting here writing, I am not also forgetting that there is other life to be lived, I mean, I got to get back into that water, I have the wet suit, I do.

Booties soon, by the weekend I believe, I will be running back over to Sports Basement, they were having a sale and fingers crossed, the booties will still be there in my size.

After that, more surfing please.

That’s the other great thing about doing the writing, any time I think, nah, let’s just watch a video, there’s a little voice in my head, sometimes in my gut, and often in my heart that says, yeah, that could be nice, but what are you going to write about then?

Sometimes it happens anyhow, but I do strive to do things and go places, partially, I completely admit, to have fodder for the word machine.

So too, do I read.

Then, too, it is such a pleasure.

I found myself actually turning in early last night.

I took a long, hot shower, did the hair, my god it was big this morning, going to bed with even a little damp hair can be risky, and got underneath the comforter with a book.

Unfortunately it was ass, but it was a gift and I wanted to give it a go.

I read through a few pages and blew a raspberry at it, I put it down and picked up the Eugenides I am also currently reading.

Read and write and work and write and sleep and write.

And get laid.

Please God.

And get a boyfriend and go surfing.

Do that recovery thing, but that’s second nature, don’t even have to think about scheduling that, it’s sort of like brushing my teeth, just do it every day.

And then read and write.

And write some more.

Go buy another notebook, fix the fan on your laptop and gird the loins.

November Novel Writing Month I will see you next week.


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