The Plan With Prompts

I think I’ve come up with a plan to get back into my writing. I’ve been slacking lately and I can’t let that continue. Before I dive into my novel and short story ideas I think I will do a few days of prompts. I need to get my imagination and writing brain back into word shape. Even on this blog I’ve been really grasping for topics lately. Comparing hair and puppy training to writing. I can do better. (Unless you like that sort of thing.) I was thinking about taking a writing class. Writing classes were helpful when I was in college but I realized all the professor would do is use one page prompts as the homework assignment. The impending due date helped and having people to critique your work but I don’t think I need all the extras. I need a steady writing schedule.

It is always good to start off with a plan or an outline to organize my thoughts and know what direction to charge forward. It’s time to get my butt in the seat, my hands on the keyboard, and unlock a door the stories need to escape. These untold and incomplete stories have been driving me crazy. They’ve been trapped for too long. So wish me luck. I struggle with distractions and procrastination. I hope to find the motivation I had a year ago and start find writing schedule again.

Fear As Fuel (Editing My Hair)

I think it’s been two years since I’ve gotten my hair cut. Not good. I know. I didn’t know who to go to without spending an exuberant amount of money. But I needed a haircut. The only way my comb made it through my hair was with a lot of tugging and some ripping sounds. I went to the place around the corner and made an appointment. I cut off maybe six inches and it feels good. It feels light, free, maybe a bit wild but looking healthy. I know now I’ll get a comb through it and it will curl more when it dries.

I haven’t had many bad experiences with my hair. I have always been clear about what I want done and so far most have listened. Also, hair grows back and mine grows fast. Why did I wait so long to get my haircut? Fear. Entering a new location, meeting the hair stylist, and sitting in the chair can all be scary. I had to stop avoiding feeling fear.  Just like the writing or editing life. With writing I had to stop fearing rejection, rereading my past work, and cutting writing that didn’t fit even if it sounded good. Fear is there to protect us from pain. There can be more pain never trying. Fear can help writing. It can be used as energy for inspiration. I didn’t think I would have an article this week. I had nothing to write about. This haircut inspirited me and reminded me that I have fears of trusting new people with parts of me but not letting those fears take charge.

While my hair looks good I have learn not to strive for perfection with my writing the first time around. I can continue cringing while reading but not stop editing. There may be a promising sentence that can make all the difference. I might have reached trying to find similarity with life and writing. However, I’m glad I did and do something that scares me. Next time it will be easier.

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Healthy hair on my head.

Ending The Last of Us

Naughty Dog has done it again. I just finished playing The Last of Us on PS3 and I am blown away. Late start, life, and responsibility kept getting in the way but I’m so happy I continued to come back. Seriously once I started playing, I don’t think I had a choice. The story line was amazing.

A fungal infects humans and spreads. Twenty years after the outbreak civilization has dramatically changed. Infected humans are everywhere and survivors turn and kill one another for food, weapons, or whatever they can get there hands on. Joel, a survivor is hired to help Ellie, a fourteen year old girl, travel across country. They meet few people that help along the way but what they face is a dark, brutal journey of infected, renegades, and cannibals.

Without spoilers I will tell you the first 10 minutes of the game will most likely have you in tears. I know I was fighting them back. For the rest of the game the characters and their relationships are developed gradually and with such care that it really helped me feel for them and keep playing. I have to complement Naughty Dog on writing dialog, especially between Joel and Ellie. They share real and touching moments that got me deeply invested. It also lead to some suspenseful scenes. This is not the standard, shoot through everyone, game. You are encouraged to sneak around your enemy. The sneak option left me on the edge of my seat with moments where I forgot I could breath while playing these scenes. (Yeah, I’m one of those type of players.) I just kept saying, “Someone’s going to die”.

One of the hard parts for me was the scene I played Joel, hanging upside down while waves of enemies come at you. I did have trouble with the shooting in this scene and some others. But I’m not always a good shot in any game (Not an expert gamer.) so I really liked the sneak option. It is a kill or be killed sort of world. The violence and killing Joel commits seems like a man who has been doing this job too long. I was shocked by the ending. Warning: SPOILERS. For those who plan to play and/or haven’t finished and are reading this, stop reading here if you don’t want to know the ending. I don’t think I can be vague anymore.

Okay. So, I was expecting a dismal end for one or both of the characters. At the end, some of the things Joel does is just hard to watch. But I understand his state of mind. No longer transporting a package, he is more like a father and he will do anything to protect Ellie. And Ellie trusts and believes everything Joel says because look at all they’ve been through together. Does she know? I don’t think so. I believe Ellie would die to cure humanity and Joel knows. That’s why Joel lies. I was not disappointed. I liked it.

Wow this almost sounded like a review. That wasn’t my intention. I just finished the game and I needed to get all this out.

Writing Fever

I write better at times away from home. Is it the clique atmosphere that makes the brain click and starts it running with poetic verse? Or is it the different location. The place that is not your own. New sensations? If it’s the nature noise and the city quite or the drown of the city’s loud buss and the stillness of the rural areas. Away, the words come. The mind loosens up. There is distance between your T.V. or fast internet and you can’t drift away from the page. The clock’s clicking doesn’t echo or count down but the word count increases.