I have spent the month of January being transported by figuring out my own manuscript rather than being transported by a Snow Read, which is how I have been whiling away the cold winters in my life over the past few years. It has been a solid coping skill in helping me to deal with my fear that I will never be warm outside again, despite always being proven wrong.
I have seen advice all over that when you are seriously writing (and I am trying my best to seriously write) that you really should not be immersing yourself in fiction. It makes sense. I need my own thoughts to be working for me, instead of slipping into someone else’s fictional world. I have been doing less crafting and more writing, because crafting is another amazing use of my time that needs to move over.
When my brain needs a wind down in the evening, I have been watching really light television shows that I won’t admit to on a public forum, even with the nom de keyboard, working on a lace scarf, playing solitaire on my tablet, and listening to Writing Great Fiction: Storytelling Tips and Techniques by The Great Courses (so glad I read as much as I did in preparation to write because he references many books I have read, like Middlemarch, The Great Gatsby, and even The Luminaries). When I am working out or driving it tends to be the course, or I will allow podcasts of stories or book reviews (I still like Myths and Legends, Book Riot’s Recommended and Literary Disco). And not only have I been plotting out a novel and working on it with the instructor whose time I won in a short story contest, I have been writing up other short, dark fictions that I have been working on in fits and starts, and trying to go back to writing every day, even if it is a brain dump.
Brain Dump Sidebar: I did morning pages through a particularly jarring, life altering and hugely embarrassing breakup and I think it helped me process enough to be ready to move on when I met my husband not too much after that. A few months of hiding and writing and I was a new woman. Magic. I was doing morning pages to lead me back into my own creativity groove, not bring along a dude, but I suppose others would wish themselves so lucky. And further proof that some things show up just as, and only when, you stop looking for them.
But if you are reading this post to discover the cheat meal, that loaf of bread, cupcake, or plate of fettuccine alfredo after a few low carb weeks, I shall not disappoint:
Anya’s Ghost, Vera Brosgol
A immigrant, trying to fit in teenage girl who comes under the influence of a ghost looking to meet her own ends? Absolutely. This counts as a comic written and illustrated by the same person for BookRiots 2018 Read Harder Challenge. I didn’t dislike The Complete Persepolis, but this was a much less intense, more enjoyable read. This was YA fun at it’s finest. I read it through in one sitting. I loved it but it is probably getting donated to my library because it needs to be in the hands of an angsty reluctant reader to get them into the diversion of books. It can start in my hands but these are not the hands with which it needs to ultimately stay.
Don’t judge me, I was starving! The calories were soo worth it!
It’s been an interesting study in how much fiction reading for blogging and just because I loved it filled in my free spaces.
Also an unintended benefit: I believe that I have been spending less money because I am not on the hunt for new books, new audiobooks, and new crafts, as well as a free Sunday afternoon really should be spent writing or planning my novel, not pushing my son through Target in a cart with the promise of pizza with good behavior. I have spent money taking him out to do things, but not money on my intense hobby chasing.
Maybe I need to post on trying to get my own reluctant reader into books and right now giving up my expectations, which I tell parents to do all the time at work and now it’s my turn to take my own advice. Spoiler alert: I haven’t gotten him into The BFG yet but I am not done trying. Not even close.
As I have warned, fiction starvation might lead to a series of what I have read while writing, I don’t know. I like that this blog is writing but changing it up from fiction.