Returning February 22

I’ve been writing but not posting for a couple weeks. It’s been miss-able.

Rather than slog through these last 56 days with nothing to be proud of, I’m going to take a purposeful break. I will be back for the last eight weeks on February 22.

A Weekly 1kd?

I read an article today that dredged up thoughts from the silt of my brain I’d not realized existed…ever or still—not sure which. I am decidedly unprofessional on 1000 Days. I do not put forth the effort to make sense, spell words accurately, finish a thought, or comma-nate with much appropriateness. I make up words.

If you asked me why I posted so many rough lines my excuse would be that I’m not trying to do anything but write daily. Everything else I do well is just gravy and accidental. Unfortunately, that response would be both a lie and not a very good idea. I do try to do more than write daily; I should try to do more.

Initially 1000 Days existed as a Word document. Early on, friends encouraged me to create a blog so I could share what I wrote with them. I did, but I don’t think most of those folks read 1000 Days any more, so the panopticon effect I might have enjoyed in the first few months is long gone. I’m the only one watching over me now—which is fine, but doesn’t require a public blog. I had hoped daily posts might attract random followers willing to put up with my speculative brain spasms. There must be some secret to gaining such readers because my stats over the years show less than five hits a day on average—Hello there, robots! I do get occasional real-people bumps but not sticky ones. Really the only reason not to revert to a Word document is the convenient database of posts and the off-site storage of my work.

Work which I’ve just declared unprofessional.

I’m leading to the possibility I take 1000 Days off the daily posting schedule. That I still write daily, but that I only post the good stuff. The edited stuff. The thought out and crafted stuff. The professional stuff.

Indexing and Reading More Like a Writer

Yesterday I reignited an old effort to index and catalogue the work I’ve done here on 1000 Days. You may recall I’d attempted or claimed to have attempted to create a glossary. Yesterday I created a better infrastructure for following through on that endeavor. I may use it as a safety net for one day of weekend writing.

Aside from creating a default activity to go to during those tough-to-write-on Sundays during football season, I look forward to defining the volume of what I’ve done over the past years as well as uncovering some misplaced toys from the youth of my daily writing. Toys I knew I had, but forgot I enjoyed.

Finding Mr. Johnathan Goffe, The Shanty, and You all before entry thirty-two surprised me a bit. I’m certain I’ve not created two such deep wells in a thirty-day span since. Or if I have, I haven’t done so in a while. Indexing 1000 Days should help.

I bought a Kindle 3 less than a month ago. I’ve read several sample bits on it, I’ve loaded it with books I’ve already read on the iPhone, and I’ve read more than halfway through my first full novel on it. This inaugural book, Clockwork Angel, kicks off the The Infernal Devices Series by Cassandra Clare. The balance of the series remains pre-published. Clare published three previous novels in the same world but set in present day. Clockwork Angel finds it’s setting in 18th century England.

These Young Adult novels appeal to me because I find myself looking more and more at books from the perspective of my children. I wonder what I might read to them; I wonder what they might choose to read to themselves. Of course, ‘clockwork’ in the title captures my eye—so far, I’m left cold on the point of the title.

The book is well written and good, but I doubt I’ll purchase the first series or even the second book in this series soon. I may purchase them after some other reading. This one just didn’t grab me which is likely not a surprise to the author since I’m a middle-aged man rather than a much younger girl. The suspense, both dramatic and romantic, feels a little drawn out for my taste. And, my God!, the descriptions of eyeballs overwhelms me. Sure, window to the soul and all, but apparently front door, back door, and chimney as well.

None of that was meant to be my point. I meant my point to be that I’ve been reading with more of an authorial eye. Appraising what I’ve read from a creator’s perspective rather than a consumer’s. I’m not great at it, but I think I’m getting better.

459 words on day 549

Necessarily Short

This will be necessarily short because I need to get work done soon and on the road thereafter.

I’ll be using this time to write toward my goal because need to get this 1kd caterpillar into it’s cocoon for some purposeful overhauling.  However, I’ll only contribute to that goal when I am writing not speculating and only when I have something to write.  I won’t be fluffing here unless it’s traditional 1kd fluff.

My first thought was to turn the Tritti stuff from way back when because I’d like to work with a female protagonist, but I’m not set.  I’ll be reading back through my work to uncover a character I can work with.

Day 370

A Title So Dull Even Reverse Psychology Won’t Get You to Read On

I’d hoped to be back writing short pieces of truncated scenes this morning as I normally do, but I’ve gotten a late start due to an early start.Maybe some sort of weekend recapitulation is in order.

Our house is clean this morning.  Last week while cleaning resilient wads of red hair from the rollers of our vacuum I determined I was wasting time.  The thing was well and truly busted.  I didn’t want to fix it; I’m not Bedouin or a junk man.  Carrie quickly priced a couple options for a Dyson and we were off to buy the cheaper of the two since the pet hair one exceeded our gut cost-to-performance expectations.  Once home I jerked it out of the box and fired it up.

A trip around the living room filled the canister.  A second trip around the same carpet nearly filled the canister again.  The vacuum performs under expectations or the carpeting exceeds them.  I’m going with a win for the carpet.  We’ve found a comfortable combination of ambivalence and willful ignorance a quick route to a clean house.

So we Dysoned it up.  Moved all the furniture to the periphery.  And rolled out the Bissel home steam cleaner.  I use the word steam loosely—I don’t think they use it at all—because I don’t think it would make as much sense to call in a wet-vac.  This lonely tool bewilders and impresses me every time I use it.  An unintuitive combination of dials and triggers coupled with a long-ago skim of the instructions means I start each session by figuring it one more time.  In the end it’s simpler than I recall.  Then the cleaner sucks up all the pet stains—that’s marketese for shit, puke, and pee—and kid stains—not exactly the same but close.

The other pleasure is it’s facility.  I come away thinking we should do this once a month.  Why don’t we?  Why haven’t we?

Sink’s clean.  Kitchen counters clear.  Garage 10% better than the weekend before.

Hopefully these conditions maintain throughout the week till our 10th Annual Pumpkin Carving Party on Saturday.

Day 305

Dramatis Personæ

Regular readers may have noticed I pulled my “Seinfeldian Chain” page. It got good hits—likely due to the celebrity of the name itself—but I rarely updated it and let’s face it, the idea that I actually write every everyday is a lie I tell myself. One that didn’t need a fancy tracking device to expose my shame. So, gone.

In it’s place you will soon find a Cast of Characters page. I dreamed this up last night as a way of avoiding productive speculative writing, but I’ve got an angle. A trip through this last year’s writing plucking green, ripe, and rotten fruit from the branches of my posts ought to help me find a new thread to pick up on or an abandoned thread to revive. Also, I intend to try my hand at one or two-line character sketches.

I know I have characters for whom my description in situ fell short of full and even short of what I held in my head. Doing this harvest should preserve whatever considerations I’d given these characters at the time and probably expose details you’d not known before.

Lastly, I’m curious to reveal my character demographics. My writing feels physically diverse, but I’m thinking I have a number of Mary Sues out there that need to take a few strides away from their creator. At the very least a head count may be amusing.

Day 297