22
Oct
19

What’s Stopping You?

Every creative person hits a wall or a block from time to time. But sometimes those blocks become ridiculously huge, and your ability to chip away at them shrinks to nothing. Even worse, when someone or something is constantly building that wall, it becomes a losing game to keep smacking away at it. It’s akin to bashing your head against a wall repeatedly, thinking sooner or later your fractured skull will actually break the concrete.

What stops you? What internal or external influence adds bricks to that wall? How do you counter them?

For me, it’s being online. Going online is unpleasant. I’m painfully socially isolated, and want to interact with people. I acknowledge that, as a writer, if I want people to read my work, I have to interact with others. But it feels like any attempts I make are met with explanations of how I’m a horrible person and should kill myself. I get that at least once a day, and while the might of the block button is strong, my mental issues are stronger. I will fret over it all day, either assuming they’re right, I am a horrible person, and I should commit suicide, or I will be fuming at the person who said it for being just plain wrong in whatever assumptions they made that led them to say that to me. Or both. Well. Maybe frequently both.

That usually ends with naptime or some fresh scars on my arms. It almost never ends in me returning to the keyboard or accomplishing anything of relevance that day.

I don’t know how to block it out, or how to chip away at that wall.

Having just moved (and still fighting with my employer and SSI in a vain attempt to get paid, at least for the 9 months I’ve been unable to work, which they still want to fight even though I now have four different doctors all in agreement that I’m messed up), I can’t even hit up my go-to comfort food. There is no Popeye’s in Albany. This is a terrible crime that should be rectified, posthaste. If you’re listening, corporate overlords of delicious fried chicken.

Anyway. Back to the question at hand; what builds your wall, and how do you try to break it down? Let us know down below.

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21
Oct
19

Chrysanthemum Graves

Being unable to hold it in anymore, I scribbled the first few paragraphs of my NaNoWriMo project. I thought I’d share. Let me know what you think!

-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-

“What the fuck are you doing? Where the hell are your shoes?”

The voice came from somewhere further inside the house, the heavy walls and their tapestries deadening it, killing any echoes and making it hard to tell where it had come from. Still, Danny knew it well enough. Calm, despite the words it chose. Deep, rumbling like a subterranean landslide. Faint traces of an accent, but one that was almost impossible to define.

“Taking care of the floor, man! Isn’t that some shit you’re into? Don’t wanna track all over the place.”

Danny’s voice was shrill, nasal, almost the human equivalent of nails on chalkboard. He hated the sound of it himself, and would complain about it to anyone who even vaguely touched the subject, but there wasn’t much he could do about it. Puberty and its mysterious ways had been unkind to him in that regard.

The owner of the other voice had appeared at the end of the hall leading from the entryway. Contrary to his irritation at Danny’s lack of footwear, he was barefoot. A pair of gray sweats were the only clothing he wore. His chest was bare, shiny with sweat. Danny assumed the other man had been in the middle of one of his routines when he’d heard the bell.

“I like to keep my floor clean, yeah. That’s why I don’t want your nasty feet dragging on it. I mean, couldn’t you at least wear some socks? Go put your shoes back on. Then meet me in the kitchen.”

The man turned to his left, slipping through a beaded curtain that blended so well into the wall that it would have been invisible if you didn’t know to look for it. He was silent as he did so, and despite the rattling Danny knew he’d provoke by walking through it, the beads barely moved, as though they refused to defy the master of the house.

“Uh… right. Whatever you say, Ichi.”

His voice shook more than usual, and Danny cursed himself for it. Ichiro had never done anything to make him feel the pulse of fear that always quaked through him in the other man’s presence. Nothing to him, anyway. But Danny still always had to wonder if one day that would change.

He slunk back up the two short steps that separated the main room from the entrance, slipping his feet into the battered sneakers that had last been replaced sometime during Obama’s first term, before moving to follow Ichiro through the curtain.

20
Oct
19

Respect the Work

Do the people in your life respect your work? Do you?

When you’re trying to write, or paint, or whatever your chosen creative outlet is, how do you make the folks around you understand that it’s important and you need to do it, to be left alone and not questioned while you do it? Do you do that? Is doing that selfish, or necessary? Do you feel bad about it when you speak up or lock yourself away?

Having a lot of those thoughts lately. I know there’s a lot going on, a lot of responsibilities to fulfill, but in my mind, trying to write, trying to create is just as important as sorting out the move or dragging furniture around. Maybe moreso, because it helps me push my illnesses – mental and physical – aside, at least a little bit. Plus, it’s pretty much the only thing I can do that might generate any form of income on my part at this point.

What does everyone else think?

19
Oct
19

Moving Day

Yesterday, the move began. Had to move, as Salem was getting too expensive, the lady of the house’s commute was too exhausting, all the doctors I need are too far out, and our neighbors suck with their habits of blowing pot smoke under their door and into ours (or out their bedroom window, where it drifts directly into ours) and bioweapons grade insect infestations that crawl up from downstairs. Living in an upstairs apartment for a gimp like me was also massively unpleasant.

I wore myself out, because as is my penchant, I said “fuck it, I’m gonna get shit done” and pushed myself well past my breaking point. Still isn’t even close to done. I got all the dishes moved. Which is a greater accomplishment than you might think (there were roughly 10 boxes of dishes, all fairly large and slightly overpacked, which had to be lugged downstairs, tied into a truckbed, transported 30 miles and then unloaded in a rainstorm), but still not that great. I set the bed up. I got internet turned on. Hooray.

In the process of all that, I got a call from one of my doctors, saying the words I’ve been arguing with 6 doctors over for nearly a year and informing me of the appointment where it will be marked on official documentation, so perhaps my employer will quit stalling and actually pay me (and my lawyer will have the paperwork he wants to send to SSI.) “It is not safe for you to return to work. We’ll see you Friday for your documentation.”

I’m torn on that. On the one hand, it’s somewhat of a relief; it means that maybe I can finally help pay some rent, catch up the credit cards that are maxed and delinquent, that sort of thing. It means there’s hope for at least some income trickling in soon. On the other hand, it probably means my employer’s going to let me go once they pay it (since at this time it appears unlikely I’ll be going back any time soon, surgery or no), which means no insurance (which is already on the verge of cancellation as it is.)

It also feels like a punch to the gut. I’m one of those weirdos who actually wants to work. I liked my job. I’d rather be doing it, and working to the next tier position. Maybe one day I can go back, but it’s likely I’d be starting from the bottom again. That’s assuming I can get my surgery, survive the refractory period, and have significant quality of life increases from it after the six month recovery time expires.  Lots of ifs, there.

Anyway. My brain’s up in the air. Trying to figure out how I’m going to get my computer, PS4 and television to the new house (let alone the furniture.) The rain and driving a Ford Ranger (small cab, short bed) makes moving electronics an exciting proposition. But I’ll figure it out. Hopefully. I’m still trying to do a post a day (doing this at the old house, since I haven’t yet dismantled my “writing corner”) and pretend I actually do stuff with social media, but I don’t know if I’ll be able to keep that up over the next week. I’ll do my best.

Hope everyone out there is well.

KA Spiral no signature

 

19
Oct
19

PorterGirl 4 – Footsteps of the Templar – OFFICIAL LAUNCH — Lucy Brazier

Go. Now. (Comments disabled here; please visit the original post.)

AMAZON UK AMAZON US

via PorterGirl 4 – Footsteps of the Templar – OFFICIAL LAUNCH — Lucy Brazier

19
Oct
19

Would you visit the Winchester mansion? — ontheedgeofeverything

Would you hang out there? Why not? (Comments disabled here; please visit the original post.)

Halloween is my favourite annual holiday by a mile. Likely due to my fascination in all things creepy, Halloween and all its spookiness make me very happy, and throughout the Fall months, my interest in the paranormal becomes heightened, if you will. And, because it’s the season of scariness, I’ve been reading my book, Ghost […]

via Would you visit the Winchester mansion? — ontheedgeofeverything

18
Oct
19

We Need to Be More Organyc!

There’s a YouTuber out there who I absolutely adore. She makes great content, and is one of the few that actually makes me happy and laugh… given my health problems and the general state of YouTube, that’s a rare and amazing feat.

This is Olyve Gardens. If you’re not watching her, you should. Go on; I’ll wait. Go hit the subscribe and the bell and all those other things you’re supposed to do on YouTube. And if you want to hunt her down on Twitter, you can find her at @OlyveOrganyc and @AwfulOphelia. She’s also got a Twitch, and a Patreon (become a Gardyn Fairy!)

Olyve – and her roommates – aren’t doing so hot right now. They need some help. Here, I’ll let her explain:

I can sympathize with a lot of her problems; moving, health issues, being off work. It’s not a great place to be. I’m sure a lot of you out there feel the same. Like she said, she can use some support, and some smiles in the smile bank, and most of all, a job. If you can help her with any of that, you should. Reach out. Folks in the creative community need to help each other out.

Thanks for coming to my Ted Talk.

KA Spiral no signature




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