The title of this post, comes from an online writer's listserv that I belonged to, from about 6 years ago to almost three years ago, if memory serves. While like so many institutions in cyberspace, "SoWrite" came and went, but I liked the idea: There were a lot of writer's forms where people just sat around and blathered incoherently without producing much content, SoWrite's philosophy was simply, "You want to be a writer, do you? So write." It was a nice reminder.
As I think about the past few days, and perhaps even the past few weeks, writing these TealArt related entries has been one of the more fun things I've accomplished. So I'm going to write more of them. I hope you don't mind. When I'm in school, or at least school for the past three years, I've had so much academic writing that I get burnt out, and can't possibly envision myself committing another phoneme to the page. So maybe I'll develop a habit this summer and you'll see a TealArt revival, or not, but I'm hoping and you know it's good for right now.
In addition to the knitting projects that I've been working on this summer (ones that seem to be coming out of the "black hole stage of the first 10 or so inches, where they won't grow no matter how long you knit on them), I've been doing a lot of reading. A lot of philosophy, in various forms. While I get called a social scientist a lot, and it's true, I'm in an area which suits me in a lot of ways in terms of subject and method, the theories and analytical insights of my discipline (in particular) seem ungrounded somehow. While I really do enjoy this reading, and very much want to continue with this reading, it is not as inspiring or as invigorating as I initially hoped it would. Such is life.
Another thing I've been working on is revising a fiction story that I last edited in 2003. Its a fairly substantial rewrite, but it's going quickly. I'm much more nimble with words than I was then. This isn't to say that I've reached the top of the hill, as I'm sure the quality of the writing on TealArt demonstrates, but I've grown.
I had a professor last semester who assigned what I've taken to calling "exercise" papers: papers where the object of the writing was to synthesize as many "concepts" presented in the text/class as possible in a given page count. There was minimal research, and the experience was something like an "in-class" essay with more stress. Except he ripped apart the writing like a bitter creative writing MFA teaching 5 sections of freshman comp a term. Which was incredibly demoralizing and I'm not sure how much I've actually recovered from it.
In the past, I've typically done fairly detailed outlines of a story before I sit down to draft it. I find this particularly important in long form fiction as I fear it would be too easy to write yourself into a tree, and I think that's important to avoid. So I haven't started the--admittedly arduous--process of outlining the re-imagined Circle Games (working: Square Pegs). I think it needs to stew some more. The Circle Games story, is one that I don't think I'm done with, and I like the idea of telling it again, and I really like the idea of playing with the characters more. They're good people.
So in an effort to establish accountability, my goal is to finish editing this story, so I can do lay down the recording for the first Circle Games pod-cast tomorrow. I also want to go to the contra dance here because I think that would do me good. With luck I hope that means that I'll be able to do the editing, and have the pod-cast up by the middle of next week.
Stay well everyone.