I’m dusting off some old short stories and poetry to finally give a home to online – as I slowly morph this into mostly a site for my writing. This first piece was written in spring of 2008 for a creative writing assignment in college. It was lightly edited yesterday to fix obvious errors and to better reflect how my writing style has evolved. Content warning for memory loss/amnesia.
What makes a girl or boy? Is it clothes or hair or a toy? Is it pink, is it blue That defines girl or boy to you? If a boy wears a crown and a dress, Is he a prince or princess? If a girl takes up a sword to fight, Is she a damsel or knight? Who drew the line in the sand To decree on which side we should stand? What king, what ruler, what czar Determined who we can say we are? What makes a girl or boy? Neither clothes, nor hair, nor a toy. Not pink, child, nor blue – What defines who you are is you.
This is the first poem I’ve (deliberately) written in about a decade and, good or bad, I owe my inspiration to Simoa for encouraging me to try my hand at poetry again.
Note: if you were following me for my faith-based posts, those have moved to another WordPress: All Things That Grow. Also, apologies for lack of replies to the comments on my Doris Day post. Depression hit hard, but I will try to get to those shortly.
Some time during my second college degree, I stopped writing. Original fiction. Poetry. Songs. Fanfiction. I just stopped. Insecure and depressed and more, I stopped. A few years ago I started writing fanfiction again, but I kept it to myself. Then, I started publishing some of my fanfiction again and have been doing that again for going on two years. I get a lot of wonderful feedback, including comments insisting I work on my own material for publication (some from people actually in the industry which boggles my mind). In spite of that, I have remained largely insecure and have let that – and my ongoing depression – prevent me from trying my hand at original fic on a serious level. I’ll start to write, nothing will happen, and I’ll skitter back to fanfiction where it all comes much easier to me (which I guess makes sense seeing as the heavy lifting has been done and I adore the characters I’m working with most of the time).
It’s time for that to change.
Now that I’ve settled on a pen name that I adore, and now that I’ve been looking at some long term goals I have for the next two years, including moving to a new place while juggling student debt on my current salary (that whopping 2,000 dollar lump payment on one of my loans I just made has me seeing a few stars), I realize it’s time to stop hem-hawing and start creating content. Even if it’s like throwing darts at a dartboard and I end up with a whole lot of nothing before I end up with something, it’s like that old motivational poster: You miss one hundred percent of the shots you don’t take. I can’t be a writer if I never write.
So, a couple days ago, I opened up a new package of loose leaf paper – God knows I have more than enough laying around my room – and started drafting a story idea that’s been in the back of my mind (originally intended as an au fanfic in one of the fandoms I’m in) for about six months.
This is horrible, extremely rough, sure, but I know if I don’t share it I won’t stay motivated. So, I present you with the initial draft first section of what will hopefully be the first completed original fic I’ve written since college.
And I’d like to dedicate this little post to Simoa, whose perseverance as a writer has inspired me and made me dare to try again ♥
Nine days into March, I suppose it’s as good a time as any to outline some goals I have for the month.
March, in the past, has always been a difficult month for me. It’s a month where depression either tries to sink it’s claws in deeper following some January and February lows or it’s a month where I start to climb out of January and February funk only to fall back down harder. Thus, I’m trying to be as proactive as I can at the moment. Staying on top of things. Avoiding triggers. Not stressing too much. Taking steps back from things. Focusing on healthy habits. So on. So forth.
Thus some goals I’ve set for myself in 5 key areas are as follows:
I’ve let myself get lax with my walking and general physicality thanks to 1. winter and 2. emotional health. So I’m currently in the middle of a 2 week restart, getting myself back up to walking 10,000 steps (at least) a day. I’m doing this by using this guide from MyFitnessPal. I’m utilizing the off-the-couch one since even though I used to be able to walk/jog 3 miles a day, my body quite literally feels like it’s back to square one so I’m just going to ease into is as if I am. Today was day 5, so I walked 5,000 steps today! Half way there! But, boy, oh boy, was it a doozy. I don’t work in at a place where I feel comfortable getting up and walking (although many of my coworkers do so maybe a later goal is to deal with my insecurity in this respect), so finding a way to squeeze in more and more steps has been a challenge. If the weather were nicer, it would be no problem, as I can walk a nearby trail after work. So I’m thinking I’ll need to readjust my typical daily schedule to fit in logging some minutes on the treadmill – which is a bonus since I’ve been trying to get myself to use it more!
I’m not Catholic, but I during this season of Lent – and thanks to the inspiration of Simoa – I am trying to spend my Friday’s separating myself from the things that I tend to give too much time to or fixate on which for me is negative media (like social media, news, etc.) and writing fanfiction. The latter one may sound silly, but I sometimes find myself writing 10,000+ words a week and latching onto unhealthy behaviors with it (like writing instead of sleeping, not wanting to do work around the house because I’m writing, obsessing over updating, not focusing on my own original stuff which would probably be of more merit, etc.). While fanfiction is an outlet for me to let the pent up creative energy flow, sometimes I need to reel it in or find multiple ways to release that energy instead of “stemming” so much with it. On Fridays throughout this season, I will be spending as much of the day as I can focusing on prayer, meditation, etc. I feel like this is especially needed right now as I’ve been so disengaged spiritually due to fatigue from the election and my ongoing break away from Evangelicalism.
This is a huge trigger point for me so I’m simply trying to stay positive and not put any undue pressure on myself. Updating this blog alone is quite the exercise in itself. My goal is pretty much the same as it always is: engaging without getting stuck inside my head. I typically engage and then stress out over it after it’s done or stress out prior to engaging or stress out when it feels like nobody wants to engage with me.
I really do want/need to start working on my own original fiction writing again. So even if I have to pull a few teeth in the process, my goal is to write at least 5000 words, be it a short story, a few short stories, some outlines or something of a greater work. 5000 words. If only I knew where to begin. Sigh. I have another post about this topic coming soon.
I haven’t been reading much lately and I really want to get back in the habit of it. So I may pick up a few quick (guilty pleasure, campy) reads from the Amazon Kindle store to read this month which will also get me back on track with my Goodreads goal for 2017!