Friday, August 29, 2008

Writer's Insomnia

Insomnia.. 64 million Americans get it a year.. Apparently even exhausted parents who, when their newborn finally goes to sleep at a decent time, find themselves VERY awake lying in bed. Late-night brainstorms often wiggle their way in about that time, and something that seemed like a breakthrough at 2 a.m. turns into me shaking my head in wonder at 9 a.m. Such as turning all the half-empty bottles of condiments in my fridge upside-down in order to help 'speed up the process' of squeezing it out. We all know how long that can take, right? And when you have a toddler that desperately wants their ketchup, and a one month old crying in the other room because for some reason they've turned Anti-Bassinet, it stands to reason that a little nitro dropped in the squeeze bottle wouldn't hurt..

Well.. that's all fine and dandy. IF you remember to close all the lids properly. Ahem. Needless to say, my self-pride was deflated a little after a session with Simple Green and a half a roll of paper towels.


I've noticed that when I'm dealing with my son.. Bouncing him, rocking him or feeding him, my mind tends to wander to my novel. Sad to say I still haven't finished the first draft on the first chapter.. uhm.. page. I'm not sure I have ever gotten a block so early on. I know what I want to write, I just don't know how to put the words on paper so to speak, and this leads to frustration which intensifies my block. It's a vicious circle.

The past few nights I've found that when the kids are sleeping, I get a nearly irresistible urge to write. The problem is.. I've had to cut myself back, as I know I haven't gotten enough sleep with the kids having colds here lately, and if I start writing.. I wont stop till far into the morning. And with us moving erm.. TOMORROW? It's been a bit stressful and hectic. Thankfully it'll all be over in a few days and I can get back to a somewhat normal schedule. So I just deal with the craving.. my eyes wide open and my mind wandering over what could help my main character (whom will be unnamed for the moment) along past the first page.. okay.. uh.. paragraph. YES, I have a storyboard and some wavering semblance of a plot. I just haven't managed to get Brutis' keyboard and my fingers to work together yet.

Is it strange to name your computer? And not just name it, but christen it with a clearly stereotypical aggressive title..?

I sent a sample of some work to a 'news' site which reminds me strangely of the Onion Movie and was given the 'go-ahead' to submit work to them freelance whereas I would get compensation per comment left on my work. Seems a bit strange, but really it makes a bit of sense for them. If they don't get anyone looking at something, there is no point in spending money on it. I'll wait to see if any of my work even gets posted on the site before linking to it.. Less pressure on me. :)

Well.. My house's state of a wreck is calling- Boxes piled everywhere, an empty fridge, and my daughter's toys strewn all about the house.. Hmmm..

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Formula-Scented Research

It's amazing how it takes having a 2 and a half year old toddler hanging on your chair arm jabbering like it's the jabberthon, and a one month old newborn crying in your arms with a cold to appreciate being able to type with two hands..
As I type with one hand.. I often find my mind going back to my online nickname dubbed to me by my former guildies. MachineGunFingers. Wonder if I'd shame them with my chicken-pecking? Hmm.. Oh.. Yes I was a mmorpg addict. Guild Wars occupying my thoughts and my conversations with my husband daily. "Bane and I went farming at Yak's Bend today, and I totally stocked up on Summit Badges!" or "Temp and Dragon totally had a moment while pulling trolls above Droks in our guild-raid earlier." Hey! At least it wasn't WOW..
But all that aside.. I finally decided to get serious about my writing. As long as I can remember, I've put off doing anything that could potentially be successful in my non-existent career. Can it really be called a career when all you have is a half of a year writing freelance for the local newspaper 3 years ago? Ahem.. anyways.. While holding a fussy, crying baby whom needed to be bounced in one arm, I typed in google and did some researching.
My efforts were rewarded with a nifty 'About' site that covered just about everything I had been telling myself I needed to know. Allena Tapia gives information and resources to newbie freelancers and more advanced writers alike, including a list of places to look for you next gig. You can find her site at:
After Noah and I (Noah mostly spitting up into several burp rags during this period of time) read for close to a hour, something she said stuck with me... Allena advises newcomers to the freelance world to 'start writing'. Whether it be something with a purpose or just simply to rant.. such as writing a blog. It will help you get past your writer's block if you just try to put something on paper.. erm.. computer screen.
Slightly doubtful but willing to give it a try, I readied my single barrel fingers for a long and tedious session of chicken-pecking. As I typed, slow as it may be, I found the words coming more naturally to my mind, pauses becoming almost non-existent, and the enjoyment of actually writing eventually returning.
I can happily vouch for the 'type it off' method of writing even if the infamous writer's block plagues your creative consciousness.
This blog was born with the intention of recording my efforts in this world.. encouraging myself to keep 'plugging' and in hopes of exercising my creative muscles.
With my son demanding my attention again, I guess that is my cue to close with encouragement to fellow writers stepping out in hopes of one day their work being appreciated by another. With so many one-armed moms and dads desperate for something to take their minds off sleepless nights and a fussy newborn almost permanently attached to their other arm, you know there has to be a market for YOUR creativity somewhere..