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Tuesday, 23 February 2010

Nothing to Say

I know that I haven't posted in a while, which is why I feel compelled to write something now. The problem is I don't really have anything to write. It's not that I don't have any thoughts (more likely that I have far too many) but in all honesty I'm not really experiencing much of anything at the moment other than what it's like to be stuck at home, having difficulty doing anything. I know I could write about that but I don't want to depress my readers, I don't want to depress myself, which is why I haven't been writing anything at all. So please excuse the fact that I am not updating regularly at the moment but life and M.E. apparantly has different plans for me - plans where I don't do much of anything. Hopefully will have something to say soon :)

Friday, 12 February 2010

I Just Hate Some People

You know those people who accost you as you are trying to get from A to B - well, they are the people I'm absolutely hating right now. I know it's not fair to label all of them but they are so annoying. I know that they are just doing their jobs and possibly work on commission but how many times do I have to tell you I'm not interested before you leave me alone?

Today, I just wanted to go to Tesco but to get there I had to go past one of the stalls that are trying to sell, sell, sell. In fairness, normally I keep walking and can be pretty rude back and they get the message. Today I decided I would be polite and simply said "I'm not interested thank you" - the guy didn't stop talking to me but continued, so I said it again thinking that perhaps he hadn't heard me. This time he definitely heard me and instead of leaving me alone, he followed me all the while trying to talk to me with crap lines such as "Just between you and me..." I never heard the end of that sentence as thank the gods, it is illegal for them to move very far away from the stall. But now I never want to walk past and I don't have a choice unless I walk a lot further - I was polite and it bit me in the butt. So clearly, rudeness is the only way to get through to these people (I'm not actually that rude, I just ignore them, I don't swear at them or anything, though often I feel like I want to). And one more thing - why are they always so bloody happy? Your job sucks, people relate to that and are more likely to listen if it looks like you would rather kill yourself than be there!

Thursday, 11 February 2010

The Princess and The Frog and Marriage

I have never really understood marriage - to me the thought of staying with one person for the rest of your life is just unnatural but I'm beginning to realise I'm in the minority here. I'm not anti-marriage. I just don't really believe in it. And that's probably because way too many people are getting divorced - if people really worked at marriage when it got tough rather than just getting away from one another, perhaps I would have more faith in it (or at least the people who partake in it). You might not realise it but I actually know happily married people - my parents for example, they are still together (insane definitely). So for those people who put in the effort then marriage is fine.

But this post isn't really about my views on marriage (or it wasn't intending to be). I'd rather discuss how society sees marriage. Marriage is what everyone is supposed to want - these days you can have it all but marriage is part of the package. I went to see The Princess and The Frog, the new Disney film, and have to say I was disappointed. Not in the idea of love and la-de-da but of what Disney said about marriage.

Basically they set the story in the modern day. The heroine of the piece has spent her entire life working hard to achieve her dream of owning a restaurant and goes as far as to ignore her Mother who tells her "You can't be happy on your own" (that was a bad enough statement in itself). But when she falls in love she realises that her dream would mean nothing without a husband in the picture. (If I just ruined the story I'm sorry but it is Disney so did you really expect them not to end up together?) So basically Disney are telling all little girls out there that nothing is as important as marriage and even if you have a successful career your life will mean nothing if you are not married. This infuriates me. Like I'm said, I'm not anti-marriage. But surely the whole point of equality and feminism is about the chance to CHOOSE your life. I think everyone should be allowed to have the life that they deserve - that means if you work hard at what you want then you deserve it (if you just expect it to land in your lap then that's another matter).

I also happen to believe that no one should 'have it all' but that's another post.

And one other thing about that film - why are tarot readers always the bad guy?

Sorry if that came out as a bit of a rant but seriously, what was the point of getting equal rights if we're still being told our lives our meaningles without marriage? (And this from America who won't let certain people get married because of their sexual prefereces - grow up and accept everyone for who they are already).

Monday, 8 February 2010

Point of View

This is going to be a post about writing technique - so if you're not a writer I can save you the time of reading this and warn you now that you probably won't care about anything I'm about to say.

Now that I've got that out of the way - hello fellow writers! I should say also that I am not published and this is all my own opinion so it's up to you whether you take any of this into account. Recently I read a very interesting post on Kiersten's Blog about characterisation and how it can make or break a story. That isn't really relevant to this post other than it made me start thinking about what I am reading. I am currently reading many books - many for uni - but one of them is a chicklit that I'm indulging in (I can't believe I just publicly outed myself as a chicklit lover). I do think many of these type of book aren't that great and this one is no different - there was something about it that just wasn't grabbing me. So after reading Kiersten's post I actually focused on what I was reading. By the way I recommend this to readers; just be aware that it may spoil your reading pleasure so choose the book to study carefully.

Anyway, onto the actual point of my post (wow, this is turning out to be really long winded) - the point of view. As I was reading my chicklit book I realised that although it is in third person it is all about the main character Jazz. The problem is that every now and again it slips into a more general third person - I know what other people are thinking. I have decided that this is the main problem with this specific book. I am not engrossed in what happens to Jazz because the other characters' point of views are clouding how I see Jazz, it isn't just her story anymore. So my advice (finally, sorry it has taken so long to get to) is to really think about who's point of view are you writing it? It is perfectly acceptable to show many points of view but is it clear to the reader who is thinking what? Are they balanced? If it's just one character's point of view, do you show the reader any information that that character doesn't know? If you do, then you are straying from their point of view. I'm not telling you how to write - only you can work that out for yourself; but it is a good idea to think carefully, line by line if necessary about what your characters know and what your reader knows (and how they know this).

Hope this has been of some use to someone, maybe I'll start posting more tips and ideas but that isn't a promise.

Friday, 5 February 2010

Apologies but Motivated

Sorry that I haven't been blogging quite as often recently - there are all manner of excuses that I could cook up but quite frankly I don't have the time or the energy. Honestly, I have been working on my research and writing so much over the past few weeks that I have left myself absolutely shattered - but the thing is, I'm still motivated! Yes, you read that right - I am motivated. I'm not talking excited about a new idea (although that is certainly coming into play), I'm not even talking about excited about the writing process (which in reality is way too difficult and why on earth did I decide I wanted to write?) but I am just motivated. I'm motivated to do the washing, motivated to read articles and interviews and essays (some of which I'm not sure anyone will ever understand), motivated to sit for a few hours staring at my screen as I carefully type out a few sentences. I am in the work zone. I am at the point where it almost doesn't matter what I am working on (I did say almost) but I know I want to try my hardest and be my best - this girl is on fire so trying to sustain it as long as possible before either I physically can't (which I'm worried is way too soon) or I don't want to anymore (by which time I hope to have enough work under my belt to focus on the editing process which I absolutely love - yes, I know I'm weird already). So apologies but I wouldn't trade this feeling of motivation for anything.