who the heck knows anything, anyway

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

blame the weather, probably

New Year's Resolutions: do I need one? I've been trying to think one up--a really good one--and I got nothin'. I'm not a saint or anything, but I don't really see any normal, attainable ways to improve my life. Daniel and I eat delicious, healthy foods on the daily (I thank my parents constantly for instilling me with a love of cooking and food experimentation. being primarily vegetarian doesn't hurt, either); I don't purposefully go out and exercise all the time*, but I'm certainly not sedentary (since we don't own a car, we go everywhere on foot or autobus--which double counts for low carbon footprinting); I suppose I could resolve to "work more" but that's always in my head, and pretending like it's something new that I'm going to start doing feels like cheating. Just thinking about resolutions meant for only/all of one year makes me squirm. I mean, have you noticed my follow-through on long-term projects? Granted, I'm still doing that Daily Deity (I drew one yesterday, but you'll just have to wait until Sunday when I post all of the ones from this week), but I haven't been able to get back into Mystery Mode since it went on hiatus for grad school apps, and I can't write otter comics all that often, and my muse up and left me again after I finished my last short story in October.

I believe I expressed this particular brand of angst in the last paragraph of a recent post, actually.

So what does one resolve to do when one has issues with follow-through? Maybe following through? Haha. I don't know... My hang ups with my personal projects only really affect me. Seriously, this would not be an issue if I was being paid to do any of it. There are just no stakes, and though I can make up fake stakes and pretend to believe in them, in the end, I know they're just puppets dancing around, making empty threats. This is probably why I was so effective at getting grad school applications done--it was hellish, but I had deadlines that, in meeting them or not, would (ahem: will) dictate my future.

Ahhh, yes, and here come the Voices of My Conscience, ever ready with the guilt trip, whining and yelling about how I should just write some more damn stories and SUBMIT, SUBMIT, SUBMIT. Blah blah blah. Didn't you hear what I said about my muse? Gone. And go ahead and tell me that I should just write every day for five hours: William Styron will hold you down while I punch. That method doesn't work for everyone, and I'm tired of trying to make it work for me. When I have something worth writing, I work on it. When I don't, I don't. Sure, "writer's block" might not exist in the basic sense, but I will not write a piece of shit just for the sake of writing. I refuse! --Though, hey, that could be the explanation for this blog, so perhaps I protest too loudly. Either way, my conscience (and pushy people who think they know better) can shut the eff up. Yesterday, when I was in the shower, it occurred to me that I may, in the future, politely refuse questions about My Writing Habits, because the questions hidden within this inquiry are:
What Weird Thing Do You Do While Writing? Burn Incense and Stand on Your Head? Keep Rotten Apples on Your Desk? Go Into a Magic Trance? 
and: You Totally Write From 5am to 10pm Every Day Without Fail and You Love Every Minute of It, Right?

Why yes! I wear a viking hat and duct tape myself to my chair and play Tchaikovsky backwards while smoking cigarettes out of my ears, and I do this for eight to ten hours a day, and it's better than any job you have ever had EVER. I love it so much all the time.


...I did submit "October 1924" to a Lit Mag contest recently. Unfortunately, I don't hear back about it until March. Hey, just like grad school! Yessir. It's all one big waiting game right now. No wonder I'm losing it. This chick likes to plan stuff out. Waaaay out. To prevent further mental injury, I could resolve to do something mindless that doesn't make me over-analyze things, sudoku- or crosswords-style. Too bad I don't like sudoku or crosswords. Hmm. Alternatives?

It's funny, when you start writing something (like a blog post) that you think will lead you to a particular revelation (a cool New Year's Resolution) and you end up stomping off someplace else entirely (a rant that has apparently been bubbling away inside my subconscious). Isn't that just the nature of things? Go with the flow, guys. If your itinerary says you should be in Boise on Tuesday but you suddenly get the urge to stay on the train all the way to Minneapolis, just frickin' do it. This is why all of my blog posts are incoherent and my stories are great.***

Welp, Happy New Year, guys and gals. This year, I'm just going to keep on fighting the good fight. Maybe I'll get my shit together; maybe the beau and I will move somewhere new; and maybe maybe maybe I'll write some beautiful things. Screw you, entropy; here's to perpetually improving.

As I'm sure you've noticed (unless you read this on Google Reader, or a similar feeding device), I redesigned my blog today! Pretty, right?

More P.S.
If you don't know how someone can apparently hate writing**** and also claim to not want to do anything else, read this 1954 Paris Review interview with William Styron.

*I hate "exercising" **
**exceptions to this rule: swimming, tree-climbing, drunken dancing, spontaneous gymnastics
***pardon me, my ego is showing! I gotta let it out to breathe every once in a while, or I spend months at a time laying on my dining room floor, shedding the occasional tear but mostly staring at the ceiling, numb with existential angst.
****I don't hate writing. I just hate all of the nonsense that surrounds writing.