Friday, February 27, 2009

A Mini-Meditation on Writing

I should be doing something productive right now, but I'm not. I'm blogging. It's not that I think blogging is a waste of time; it's more like I have a number of things I could be doing. Like school reading. Paper writing. Heck, I could even be watching Princess Mononoke, which I rented today. At least that would get my imagination going.

I'm a big fan of the imagination. I guess that's why I keep wanting to add elements to the story I'm writing for Children's Lit this semester. It began as a straightforward LotR-esque adventure story, but as I've thought more and more about it--and watched a few Miyazaki movies--I've wanted to expand the world. I want to crack open the top of my head (metaphorically) and build a world that amazes. I don't want to populate a fantasy world with elves and dwarves and orcs, though there's nothing wrong with doing that. I want to bend categories. I want to invent critters that hang in the imagination long after you've read their stories. I want to blend the stuff of differing historical eras into one and make it seem as natural as breathing. That, to me, sounds exciting.

I haven't abandoned adult fiction, though. "Come on Casper" is still in the works. It's just not something I'm working on for a class these days. That story is a different kind of challenge. It's more about structure and getting the language just right . . . not giving away too much before the end of the story, etc. Of course, as I typed that, I recognized that children's lit requires all that too. I just don't get to 'play around' as much with "Come on Casper."

Is it less fun then? Yes and no. It's not a blast like inventing monsters and other whimsical doodads, but there's an intense pleasure that comes from actually constructing a story and using structural elements to guide the reader when the subject matter doesn't make reading the story 'fun.' That's what I like about adult lit. Still, though, I plan on incorporating the fantastic into my 'serious' adult fiction later. I just have to figure out how to work it out.

OK. Time to be productive.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

It's a . . . Blog Post!!

After a rip-snortin' start to my blogging year in January, I fell off the wagon in February. Part of it has to do with classes, but that's not the full reason. Facebook also takes its share of the blame. After all, I hear Facebook is killing little blogs like mine. Meh. I'll keep going.

So that's out of the way. The biggest news in my life is obviously finding out the sex of our baby. Most of you probably already know that the baby is a GIRL. That's right! We're having a girl. So many doubted, but we did the improbable.

Now, if we could just figure out a name . . .