18 June 2010

"What's my name, fool?"

I should apologize for the ratio of roller derby posts to writing posts lately, but you'll probably see that ratio continue to skew just a little bit more in the coming days.

Last night at a scrimmage, I had a crash course in the art of penalty-box timekeeping, making me a Non-Skating Official (NSO) in my local derby league. My first bout will be in two weeks.  Unfortunately, I'm out most of July, what with Readercon and the "annual camping trip"* with friends.  But I'll be around for their bouts in August and beyond.

The only thing missing, they tell me, is my roller derby name.  So, I'm taking suggestions.  Tell me something good in the comments.  Or if you're one of my tweeps, you know where to find me.

13 June 2010

"Come to see victory/ In the land called Fantasy"

Apparently, I just can't seem to get enough of the Ithaca League of Women Rollers and watching home bouts. I drove to an away bout last night to watch the Sufferjets play the Utica Roller Girls.

12 June 2010

"Let her go, let her go, God bless her/ Wherever she may be"

One D.O.A., One on the Way One D.O.A., One on the Way by Mary Robison

My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Mary Robison's prose is as dense, sparse, and evocative as ever. You might call the snippets of text disjointed, or gripe about a lack of obvious plotline, but there's still a narrative to be followed.

The main character is certainly the sort who might reveal a lot of the facts of her life to you, but still keep you at arm's length. Indeed, Robison's prose seems to purposely keep me at a distance. I know a lot of people who would complain about that too, but it was a curious experience for me. It's almost as if I had a front-row seat in the theater of the main character's life, but with a splatter-shield in front of me.

And believe me, with everything she goes through, that's a good thing.

View all my reviews >>

10 June 2010

Functional Freakiness

I made a small effort toward getting back in the writing saddle after my weekend adventures. I confess, I haven't had much luck. This is how I've been feeling for nigh on two weeks...

Reading between the lines of those blog entries, you can probably detect a tinge of guilt.  It was fed, in part, by this quote I'd read (and posted to my tumblr) from filmmaker John Waters in his "10 Best Pieces of Advice for Functional Freaks."
I’m a fascist about my work habits and I expect you to be, too. Never have a spontaneous moment in your life again. If you’re going to have a hangover, it should be scheduled on your calendar months in advance. Rigid enjoyment of planning can get you high. Militant time-management will enable you to ignore how maladjusted you would be if you had the time to notice it in the first place. Discipline is not anal compulsion; it’s a lifestyle that breeds power.

07 June 2010

"Everybody needs a little time away..." Part III

I took one final day yesterday to relax from the stresses of life, the dayjob, and my writing. I know what most writers say about needing to write every single day and the thing is, I agree 100%. It's just that I've come to the realization that I can't do it.  I should, and I should keep working toward that.  But if I treat writing like another job, then like any other job, I need a break.

Yesterday was the third and final day of the annual summer festival. Whereas Saturday was sunny and hot, almost to the point where I was worried about heat stroke, Sunday was gray, drizzling at times, and about 20 degrees cooler. I thought all I needed was a thicker polo shirt, but I was wrong. Still, some hot chocolate warmed me up enough to enjoy what I saw: People dancing to a circle of drummers, folks doing Yoga in the cold, and a local group of bagpipers which includes a sci-fi writer who is a frequent contributor to Analog as well as Asimov's Science Fiction and other places.

If nothing else, I've got a third day's worth of potential character sketches, here. 

Now, I'm getting slowly back on the wagon. I'm finally getting the first draft of my story for Rigor Amortis together, building it around the skeleton of an unrelated flash fiction I wrote about 6 or 8 months ago. I figure if Carol Emshwiller can include "Acceptance Speech" and "Report to the Men's Club" in the same collection, then I can make a story "the same, but different" than one I've previously written (not that I'm 1/10th of the writer she is, but still).

05 June 2010

"Everybody needs a little time away..." Part II

It's actually taken a lot for me to realize just how much I needed a break from this year of hell at the dayjob, even after an extra-long long holiday weekend.  My writing suffered.  I'm not talking about how much I haven't been writing lately, but the fact that I was convinced that somehow I could get it done if I'd just whipped myself a little harder.  But I think I was, literally, beating a dead horse.

So, I went for another day of frolicking in the sun at the annual summer festival, the one time and place in the year when I don't mind running into coworkers.

And again, the best part is that this batch of photos is ripe with character ideas!  I've already begged off critique group tomorrow to go to the festival's last day.

04 June 2010

"Everybody needs a little time away..."

As if my "wrojo" (i.e. "writing mojo" -- brought to you by Regan) wasn't low enough, there's been so much more to distract me this past week. There's been an upsurge in work in my dayjob capacity as the Special Projects Bitch. To unwind, I've been taking advantage of the nice weather conciding with my town's annual summer festival. But hey, sometimes you need some time off from writing and to recharge. And it's only recently that loafing is only a small part of recharging. The other part, at least for me, is being charged with something--in this case, the energy that drew me to live here in the first place.

Traditionally, the festival starts off with a Thursday night parade.

My favorite part of the parade was the Ithaca League of Women Rollers and their Chia Skate float!

The best part is, there's at least a half-dozen character ideas in just these photographs.

More to come, as I've just spent most of my Saturday. And I plan to spend some of my Sunday, as well.

01 June 2010

Taking the First Step

If I had any brains, I'd just junk my Twitter account now.  Spend enough time on it, and eventually your true self is revealed to all.  Case in point...

Names have been omitted to protect the *snicker* innocent.

Oh, and "wrojo" = "writing mojo."

Wrojo: I has it. At certain times.

@Crossed Genres

"Combat Stress Reaction" is up today in CG's Gadgets & Artifacts issue.

Now, you could click the links and read the stories in the issue for free, but you know you want to support this fine, paying market.  Luckily, they have several ways for you to do that!