Monday, March 21, 2011

Big big big news.

I have big news. Big news that's been under a publication ban, none the less, so I've had a while to think up clever intros for this blog post. And all the clever intros that I've managed aren't really that clever, so I'll just go for it.

I got into Clarion 2011.

Wait, what, you say? What are you talking about?

Well, remember that blog post I wrote a little while ago about this workshop I applied to that was super competitive? The one that was full-time for 6 weeks in California, tought by professional authors, and described as "boot camp for spec fiction writers?" And how I was wondering how I'd deal with the rejection of not getting in, because of course I wasn't going to get in? They only take 18 people, for goodness sake?

I'm one of the 18.

This is a screen cap from this link. 
(Also, I'm trying to resist the urge to stalk those people. There is PLENTY of time for that later.)

So yeah. I'm going to California, June 26- Aug 6th. No big deal.

Who am I kidding, I have to scrape myself off the ceiling every few hours, I'm so delighted. Every part of this news delights me. Let me count the ways.
  • I get to travel there. 
    • On google earth, the distance is just under seven thousand miles. I love technology.
  • On my travel back home, I get to see my friends all across north america.
    • I have something like a month to fill there, and I can visit YOU, probably. Maybe. I'll look into it?
  • I get to write full-time.
    • Your JOB is writing and reading and talking about writing and reading. HAVE I FOUND HEAVEN EARLY?
  • My writing was considered good enough by a panel of people whose job is to judge writing. 
    • Given that it's not uncommon for people who have published to attend Clarion, I'm taking that as a sign that I might get published. Like, on a viable timeline, not just "Someday."
  • I get to spend 6 weeks devoting myself to the process of getting better at writing.
    • *dies of euphoria*
  • Because Room and Board is included in the price of the workshop, I don't have to eat my own cooking. 
    • I can't really stress too much how important that is, right now.
  • I get to meet people who have the same career goal in mind as me. 
    • This doesn't happen a lot. So I tend to glom onto those people, when I meet them. If anyone of the students is stalking ME and you found my blog, consider yourself warned. I'm sorry in advance for any weird behaviour.
  • Even the fact that it was under a publication ban delights me.
    • I hear all the time on twitter from authors who have exciting news that they can't share yet. And then I had my own news. *beams* 
    • Though I did follow the twitter lead and tell my family and alpha readers and give notice at work? Which is okay, right? 
      • I hope...

So yes. There's my big news. 

Is it June yet?

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Many many pictures and also some words

Yesterday was my day off, (since I work Saturday this week), and I went all around town! Actually I went to the two places I traditionally go, downtown and up by the university, but that's almost all over town, right? YES, exactly, I'm totally right. ^_^

Due to issues which I'd previously mentioned about MUN, I was going to the university to REJECT THEM. I suppose I could phrase that as "withdraw my registration," but hey, I was thinking of it as rejection on my part, so that's how I'm going to write it down.

I find it very odd, the attitude of universities that they have to do nothing to win over their customers. Because that's what students are- customers. And the majority of schools, or at least the ones I've dealt with, appear to see no need whatsoever for customer service. Speaking as someone who is CONSTANTLY having the need for making the customer happy drilled into my head at work, this just seems weird to me.

Maybe I've just been low on coffee whenever I talk to them.

ANYWAYS. I spent a small amount of time in MUN, and more wandering over to the public Library. Where I went in with the intention of dropping off all my books, and came out with 22 more checked out. It's research, okay? STUDY PURPOSES?

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Beware the Ides of March!

Because you'll forget your bus fare and have to stop at a tiny ABM that charges you MONEY and get some change! Oh, the HORROR!

But you know, given that this day is famous for stabbing, I think I got off okay. All told.

But yes! This is just a fast check in to let you know that I haven't had Caffeine in four full days, and I am STILL ALIVE. Even the headaches are mostly gone, since I was down to only one mug a day. (Coffee is expensive. Sheesh.) The worst thing though, is waking up in the morning, being tired, and realizing I'm not going to get any less tired all day.

My life is so hard...

This would be a good place to put a picture of my life in, only I just  looked at the pictures in my phone and they are all of food I'd made. I guess I was really proud of that applesauce?

Now in the next week, I have a TERRIBLY BUSY social schedule. I'm going to the Art Gallery tomorrow, (it's free on Wednesday Nights,) an honest-to-goodness party on Friday, and next weekend I'm going to the Opera!

How ever will I keep my head above water, with such a full appointment book?

Tune in next time to see DRAMATIC PICTURES of my life. Hopefully. Or maybe just pictures of my food.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

"You don't like me, you just like the affection."

As you may have noticed by the presence of people with ashes on their foreheads walking around, today is the first day of lent. This seems as good a time as any to announce that I have the intention of giving up caffeine. I'm just switching to tea until Saturday, where I'm planning on going to decaf.

That was a very disconcerting sentence to write.

But yes, I realized I was actually using Coffee as a mood-altering substance to make myself chatty at work. This is something that freaks me out rather a lot, especially when my interactions with people is something I'm working so very hard on. And well, all my advancing of levels in humanity aren't worth much if they're dependent on myself imbibing first, eh?

Also, I've realized that i fight hard enough to get over the highs and lows that my own brain throws at me, there's no need to add artificial lows to the mix.

So I've only had one tea today, which is probably why it's 10:43 and I'm almost falling asleep on my computer.

Here, have a song that's been playing in my head very much of late.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Adventures in Self-Discovery

First things first. Until today, I'd only ever been inside of Starbucks that were contained in Chapters bookstores. (Like a surprise filling!) Because of that, I had this idea that I knew how to get along in a Starbucks. Today I found that no, what I know how to get along in is a Chapters.

I went to a stand-alone Starbucks, and it was just weird. I used all the wrong words, and there weren't books, and people kept looking at me... Seriously, I'm starting to think that I'm easy to read or something. In bookstores, people ask me where to find things. In Grocery Stores, people ask me if I need help. In Starbucks, I get the "are you confused and lost, girl?" look. But surely I can't be that obvious, right? Right?

In other news, Google Maps lies about the times that buses are supposed to leave places. JUST SO YOU KNOW.

Last night I was talking about Music to my Roomate Emily. The conversation was originally inspired by my watching of Lady Gaga's new music video, (which is rather horrifying, don't inflict it on your brain,) but that's not the point of me telling you this. (And no, you don't get a transition from the last part into this one either. MWAHAHAHAH.) Anyhow, we were discussing music, and I finally was able to define part of what I like in music.

I've said I like songs with stories behind them, and that sound like the band actually means it. And that's true, but that doesn't explain why I DON"T like certain songs that have been suggested to me. Like, say, Metallica. Or some others that must have only been suggested once, cause I don't remember their names. :P

At any rate, I was showing off my music library by playing Dire Straits' Romeo and Juliet

I was enthusing about how it doesn't need to show off with complexity, and that made me think of another song that I love, Fleetwood Mac's The Chain.

That was about when it struck me that I really, really like those songs that keep complexity in their arsenal of weapons, but they don't need to use it ALL THE TIME. The band keeps things simple, sometimes to the point of a two-note solo, and at least to me it seems like that gives all the parts a chance to be appreciated. This also extends to visual art and writing, as far as I can tell.

I'm not sure if it's because I'm uncultured, but it seems like with most art I get bored and wander off into the corridors in my own mind if it's not embracing simplicity as a method of communication.

(yeah, the video has nothing to do with anything, please to ignore it.)

And despite all the examples I just posted, I don't only like music from the 70s and 80s. I stumbled across Adele this week, and I think whoever is directing her music videos should be given a crown to wear for everyday use. This one just delights me. :D

My new life goal is to learn whatever is going on with the staff-dance and master that art form.

P.S. Expect my post on the 2011 Debut Challenge to be updated sometime in the week, for those of you who like to read me writing about reading.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

This would be why I'm now checking my email every five minutes.

I've been mostly internet-absent of late, which you may or may not have noticed. Okay, so I like to lurk a lot and sometimes you can't tell if I've been viewing things or not, IS THAT A CRIME?


I don't even know what I'm saying here.

Oh right, internet absence and WHY. Well, you see, after the whole debacle with getting my computer to work again, I decided the best thing to do would be to apply for a short story workshop. Despite the fact that it's 6 weeks full time study on campus, and it would probably cost in excess of 5 thousand dollars to go there, and the workshop I decided to go for receives thousands of applications and only accepts 18 students, and I've never really edited anything I've written. No big deal!

(Fortunately the last two parts about how I'm not going to get in neatly cancel out my qualms about the cost. :P )

So this last week I've been focusing on trying to edit four of my short stories. I use the term "trying," because most of what I've learned is how terribly ignorant I am. My knowledge of the mechanics of making stories better is sadly, (tragically,) lacking. Even if I don't get in, I want to try to keep editing my stories.

And there my hope slipped out, because I said "even" if I don't get in, instead of "when" I don't get in, which I should of. I mean, I know what I submitted wasn't professional quality, it was too rough in ways I don't know how to smooth down yet. It treally wasn't great. But at the same time it was the most polished stuff I've ever written. I want to say "Oh, man, look at that line I wrote, wasn't it awesome, that'll definitely get me in, even if the rest was creepy and had plot holes I only realized this morning!"

I also stayed up till 2am this morning putting my submission together. One of the hazards of the deadline closing at Midnight PST, and me being 4.5 hours earlier. :P

I have no ending to this post.

I'm hoping against hope. Be well!
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