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writer’s block

A wild WRITING UPDATE appears.
WRITING UPDATE uses POOR AND OUTDATED MEME.
It’s SUPER EFFECTIVE!

Wow, I’m actually posting a blog about writing for once, instead of about legal name changes/depression/San Francisco/being depressed while going through a legal name change in San Francisco/etc. It’s because–surprise, surprise–I’ve actually been writing again lately. Though I would hazard a guess that my newest method isn’t exactly “writing.”

I’ve been working on dictations, if you couldn’t guess from the title. I’ve been developing a novel idea with fleshed-out characters and everything. Hell, I can even watch it unfold in my head, like a movie. Unfortunately, my depression-caused apathy has lead me into a serious case of what my psychologist calls “the writer’s block.” So, despite my compelling superhero-ish novel idea (tentatively entitled Runs in the Family), I haven’t been able to write a word! Oh, lawdy, it’s bad. Why can’t someone just get an innoculation for “the writer’s block”?

Actually, there is such a thing, though it isn’t much of an innoculation as much as it is a quick-fix. It’s dictating your novel–or, at the very least, a rough outline of your novel. I dictate with my cell phone’s voice memo feature, then play it back and type what I said into Scrivener (which, by the way, is the best writing program ever). What ends up coming out is some sort of strange hybrid of a screenplay and prose. If you took a screenplay and converted it into prose, that’s sort of what this looks like.

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I just wrote a new short story. It’s entitled “Bad Moon Rising” and it’s about werewolves during the Victorian Era. Sort of. I haven’t posted it on here yet, but you can all read it on my Figment. It’s for a contest on there, but it’s also an experiment for me and a novel I want to write. Go read it, heart it, do whatever. I’ll post it here once the contest is over, on the 23rd.

Eventually, I’m going to do a pen review. I just bought some Pilot Precise v7s (.5mm) and I have found that they are the best pens I’ve ever used. Even better than the Uniballs and Bics I’ve tried before. Seriously. I will go in-depth later, but this is just the basic idea of it.

I’m very tired and not so well. I’ve been gaming a lot due to my depression– escapism. Four Eyes, however, is back on track and moving fairly well. Thankfully, my laptop battery is working and charging again, which is pretty damn amazing. The Transmagical script isn’t doing as well, but I still have time to work on that. I’ve hooked one of the artists on Puella Magi Madoka Magica, which is the anime I watch to get inspired for Transmagical. 

Bleh. I basically just wanted to post about “Bad Moon Rising.”

How’s life been treating you guys?

-Jimmy

P.S. Sorry this post is written horribly.

I’m writing a short story right now.

That’s it. I’ve decided, for the time being, fuck my novel and fuck Transmagical (jokingly renamed Puer Magi Jared Magicus), I’m writing a short story. I’m returning to a world about which I’ve written before, and about a character who was pretty important, but now it’s a focus on eir. Remember, I don’t have any original characters who use ey/em/eir pronouns. I’m being ambiguous.

I think almost every writer hits a point in every novel they write where their characters feel trite and unlikable. Where their narration grows stale and stupid, the plot falls flat, and the description of their mother’s dying plant on the windowsill (bonus points for the reference) is more interesting than the protagonist’s struggle. And then the antagonist turns into Jim Moriarty à la BBC’s Sherlock but with River Song hair and the whole thing becomes a musical. At this point, the writer in question finds that the best option is to scrap the whole damn thing, even if it meant the waste of a perfectly good red Moleskine. Don’t worry. That part is totally normal.

I’ve been (re)reading a lot of Neil Gaiman’s writing lately. He is my favorite author of all time. His novel American Gods is one of my two favorite books of all time (the other is Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World). Out of all of the many novels and authors I have read in my short 15 and a half years of existence (including Edgar Allen Poe, Cory Doctorow, H.P. Lovecraft, George Orwell, and J.K. Rowling), Gaiman has most influenced my writing. Since my Kindle (lovely, first generation Kindle) recently experienced some trauma that lead to its screen being a mass of e-ink nothingness, I grabbed Fragile Things from the library and spent an afternoon reading some short stories. Thus, I was inspired to write some short stories. Though Gaiman wrote, “Normally I write short stories because someone has asked me to write a short story…” (Gaiman xvii), I almost always write short stories because I find them pleasing to write (the citation, by the way, is due to the research paper I recently wrote for English class, wherein I meticulously used MLA formatting). Short stories are the one night stands to a novel’s committed relationship: no strings attached, no arguments, and if they have a child then it isn’t your problem. To avoid the part where that analogy was probably taken from somebody much smarter than me, it’s true and untrue in equal parts.
Mainly because, for me, short stories tend to be homewreckers. They also tend to be strangely serial; especially this one, which is a direct prequel to another short story I wrote once.

Do you remember what I said a few paragraphs ago? About writers and novels? That was completely bullshitted because that is exactly how I feel at the moment. I haven’t blogged in something like eleven days because I am fairly ill at the moment. The cold that has been going around, which I happened to catch, is fairly nasty. I’m also stuck in a bout of depression that won’t let up.

So I’m writing a short story, watching anime, and playing World of Warcraft. Three good distractions.

-Jimmy

Time flies when you’re having fun, eh?

Not in my case. Depression/anxiety have been kicking my ass and making time disappear! Isn’t that great?

But enough about me.

I’ve hit a bit of a road block on my novel (Four Eyes— the main character of which is Cory Fraizer, whom you might remember from the last post), which is pretty distressing as it’s a really great outlet for all of my negative feelings. So I wanted to ask you guys a question which relates to the chapter on which I’m stuck at the moment.

Actually, two questions.

1. What is the strangest secret a person’s ever told you?
2. How did you react to said secret?

Also, if any of you enjoy writing…

3. Have you ever been stuck in a story where you know where you’re going, just not how to lead up to where you’re going?
4. How did you get past that roadblock?

Thank you, non-existent readers!

-Jimmy