Writerly Notions: blogs and purpose

tl;dr: I’ve tried various times to create and categorize writing (and related) blogs. But I can never maintain interest (except in ones I delete or revise the intention of). Until I know what I’m doing with my writing and my various categories of purpose (for me, for fairy tales, for sharing stories, for sharing experience), I won’t be updating this blog on a regular basis, if at all. Thank you to everyone who read and commented on my weird little posts. 🙂

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At the beginning of the year (February, to be precise), I typed up an initial post, which has been on my to-do list for…maybe a year?, about this blog. And it’s various incarnations.

The central question was why? Why do I even have this blog?

It started as a place to post detailed responses to books I’m reading or have read. But my motivation and interest in that only lasted so long.

Then it was supposed to be a writing blog, with posts of my writing, especially my daily writing exercises. The trouble with that was two-fold: making sure I didn’t publish anything online I wanted to publish in some other way (and the added analytical sieving to make sure the stories or vignettes I post/posted were not something I wanted to publish in some other way) and a lot of what I would post/posted weren’t really that important. About the most important bits I’ve posted about my writing is my Writing Demons posts.

Then it was supposed to be a place to post my experiences, struggles, and thoughts as a writer. But doing that felt too messy for a blog, so I made a writing journal. But that has since ground to a halt. Likewise, this blog’s venue as a writing blog has ground to a halt. And my question is why?

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River-Grown

Day 31: March 3

Flowers gleam from within, radiant gems in the underground darkness. They sway, as if to an internal melody, leaves waving at the rough, weathered stone above them. Nothing else but the small meadow lives in this cavern, a patch of blossoms that grow from the bedrock, humming and dancing on roots fed by the Deep River Under the stone.

[59]

Maiden of the Mist

Day 26: Feb 26

Water sprouts, crystallizing into ice so every splash now glistens, a translucent silver petal. These ice flowers fill a field of underground springs. Constant mist glides imperiously across the rumpled earth, born by the heat below the surface and the chill which prances, neverending, in the air. Barely anything lives here, or very few things wish to live here very long. But still, those who wander past or make seasonal homes nearby swear they have seen a figure, like a maiden draped in flowing tattered robes, wandering through the mist. Ghost or guardian, no one can say. But it turns the springs into a haunted place, so less and less humans come.

[112]

I have renewed these in lieu of the Refugee Ban in the USA. Inspired by the-cassandra-project and their Every Day Challenge, I am writing every day to raise money for the Urban Justice Center. You can donate here or please spread the word. Thank you.

Rainbow Bee

Day 24: Feb 25

The flowers shone in the sun. Dewdrops sparkled, ethereal rainbows glittering on the edge of leaf and stem. A fat, fuzzy bumblebee sipped from the petals, momentarily striped in like a rainbow.

[32]

I have renewed these in lieu of the Refugee Ban in the USA. Inspired by the-cassandra-project and their Every Day Challenge, I am writing every day to raise money for the Urban Justice Center. You can donate here or please spread the word. Thank you.

Contained Time

Day 5: Feb 5

I have renewed these in lieu of the Refugee Ban in the USA. Inspired by the-cassandra-project and their Every Day Challenge, I am writing every day to raise money for the Urban Justice Center. You can donate here or please spread the word. Thank you.

Time ached. Every second throbbed with pain, dried out by the depletion of Fortune’s River. Too many gods had siphoned off the gleaming, multi-colored liquid, to craft elixirs and garden fruit and enhanced weaponry, star-metal specially coated in it. In their palaces in the air and on the earth, the gods had no rivals, worshiped according to their rules. But as more and more of the River was sucked away and put into containment, so Time grew creaky. It no longer flowed as easily for there was no change, or less of it. The perpetual wheel of Fortune — despair and joy, destruction and growth, luck and misfortune — had halted to a grinding repetitive turn. And all the contours of Time soon became stiff and encrusted like sleeping eyes.

Until a prince broke the containment cages.

[135 words]

This one is the most actual story from my writing I’ve done. (Nights of Heroes, specially).

January Summary

a day late

As part of the Every Day Challenge, instigated by the-cassandra-project, I set up two challenges. The second one, or Challenge #2, focused on Nights of Heroes — revision, outlining, character development. I posted about my progress it every couple days. These posts can be found here at my writing journal.

Other general writing posts can be found here.

My Challenge #1, which was to write 100+ words every day, can be found here (among other material and inspiration related to the story.)

Finally, I made character aesthetics.

What to write?

11 December 2016:

A couple weeks ago, I wrote a lot of my thoughts and feelings down. It felt as if I was pushing myself to really think and consider things: how I felt, what I felt, my situation, who I was, what I believed.

I didn’t post any of it; I never post those kinds of reflections. I have a writing document, or a journaling word document. It’s where I can work through thoughts and confusion and realizations. Or at least it feels like I am. I don’t have to worry if the paragraphs fit together, or if it makes sense, or if it has a unified topic, or if it is writerly or witty or just good writing. I don’t have to worry about if my feelings sound good. I can just focus on what I mean or what I feel.

Almost two weeks ago, I posted a verbatim one about my purpose and why I write. I hadn’t written anything since then.

Today’s the seventh Anniversary of The Princess and the Frog. It’s the only Disney movie that directly influenced my writing. That winter soon after it premiered, me and my immediate family went to Walt Disney World and stayed at resort near Animal Kingdom. It was an awesome place. (It was connected to the safari/savanna so there was a waterhole area outside where you could view animals; we saw a giraffe drinking on the last day.*) But it was really out of the way.

More importantly there was a lot of PatF stuff being promoted. So, the African décor, animals, PatF, and the Christmas lights and spirit mashed up in my mind to deter and take over the second book of my Aladdin-lyric story.

That’s a really bad working name, but it’s the best I can think of to explain it.  Essentially, I wanted to take the cut lyrics from Disney’s Aladdin and see if I could create a compelling story out of it. Or more precisely, if I could take a lazy character and a spoiled character and see if I could make them compelling. By the end, it had begun to deviant from that idea and sink into a strange fog focused on the early stages of my Dreams. Then PatF came out. And I got two new characters that changed the plot.

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After Alice

By Gregory Maguire

“What would Eurydice tell us if Orpheus had been able to bring her back?” (273).

First, I think I might like stories about children being lost in weird and insensible places. Full of talking animals and odd characters and unknown dangers. That sort of thing.

Second, I’ve never been fond of Maguire’s writing. But I did enjoy After Alice. Some of this is probably because of my observation above and the fact that I was able to actually understand what was happening and the build up didn’t turn out to be a commonality (such as a daydream or an illusion).

It also presents a perspective on the underworld that I had not considered (though considering a certain story, a character, and other plot points, it’s surprising I hadn’t considered it). Namely, the underworld is associated with death. It is, after all, where some people bury the deceased. It’s the tomb of the unknown. Who knows what’s down there?

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Chronicle #3: 10 Oct 2016 – 18 Oct 2016

I was on a trip most of this week, so sorry for my absence.

  • Finished the fourth story in my NaNoWriMo 2015; it ended taking more time because there were way more scenes than I had anticipated/planned (I thought I had one scene left but it became four scenes)
  • Started the completion of the (extensively outlined) fifth story in my NaNo 2015
  • Started the completion of the sixth (and final) story in my NaNo 2015 (yay)
  • Did some mapping and history clarification
  • Wrote a vignette about characters sharing feelings
  • Attempted to move my google docs to a new owner/email
  • Did character and plot building for Garden of Flowers/Chthonic Flowers (I really need to 1. Explain what all my story categories mean, and 2. Come up with a better title name
  • Wrote a short action snippet from Romance of Three Jewels
  • Wrote a character birthday drabble (11 October)

Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland

by Lewis Carroll

“‘But I don’t want to go among mad people,’ Alice remarked.
‘Oh, you ca’n’t help that,’ said the Cat: ‘we’re all mad here. I’m mad. You’re mad.’
‘How do you know I’m mad?’ said Alice.
‘You must be,’ said the Cat, ‘or you wouldn’t have come here'” (74).

This was a very odd book. But that might be expected. Although what stood out to me the most was its mix of absurdity and order. Or to be more precise, how distinct (and tyrannical) Wonderland politics were.

For one, the cards are designated by role:

“First came soldiers carrying clubs…next the ten courtiers: these were ornamented all over with diamonds… After these came the royal children: there were ten of them, and the little dears came jumping merrily along, hand in hand, in couples: they were ornamented with hearts” (92).

The impression I get from this is that there’s a hierarchy in the card suits: spades are gardens (if the picture is anything to go on), clubs are warriors and soldiers, diamonds are courtiers or nobility, and hearts are royalty. That indicates that there is actual structure to Wonderland. Even if its laws, justice, and punishment are illogical.

I think that’s what makes it so interesting from a worldbuilding point of view (which may not have been an aspect that was on Carroll’s mind when he wrote it.)

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