This blog is a collection of a young woman's random thoughts, many tangents, and occasional
short stories and novel excerpts. Stay tuned for plenty of bull and brief moments of brilliance.

Saturday, May 5, 2012

"I Hate Seagulls"

I've been obsessed with this song now for months, probably because almost every word describes me (one of the things that doesn't is cream teas...ew...who wants cream in their tea?!). Obviously I'm avoiding studying Latin grammar and vocabulary and writing another blog post instead. Here are the lyrics:

I hate seagulls and I hate being sick
I hate burning my finger on the toaster 
And I hate nits
I hate falling over
I hate grazing my knee
I hate picking off the scab a little bit too early
I hate getting toothaches
I hate when it's a piss take
I hate all the mistakes I make
I hate rude, ignorant bastards
And I hate snobbery
I hate anyone who if I was serving chips
Wouldn't talk to me

But I have a friend
With whom I like to spend any time I can find with
I like sleeping in your bed
I like knowing what is going on inside your head
I like taking time 
And I like your mind
And I like when your hand is in mine
I like getting drunk on the dunes by the beach
I like picking strawberries
I like cream teas
And I like reading ghost stories


And my heart skips a beat every time that we meet
It's been a while and now your smile 
Is almost like a memory
But then you're back and I am fine
'Cus you're with me and I'm in love with you
And I can't find the words to make this sound unique
But honestly you make me strong
I can't believe I found someone this kind
I hope we carry on 'cus you're so nice
And I'm in love with you.

Cute, right? I smile every time I hear this song; I'm not sure why but I'm guessing it's the sheer adorableness of it all. I wish I could write something like this, so carefree and scattered but somehow organized. It's organized in its simplicity I think and I like the contrast of hate, like, and love. Such a large ascending tricolon (rhetorical device from my Cicero translations...at least some of it is sinking in) makes for a great structure and I want to emulate that. I don't see sometimes that my sentences start to look the same or at least follow a certain pattern.

Two of the women who were in my Performing Autobiography class are in the Nonfiction Writer's Workshop and hearing the writing in their pieces was inspiring. They had a similar flow to this, seamless, varied, quirky and heartwarming while also being perfectly subtle. There's this little "oomph," a step between mine and theirs that I'm missing and I want to find what exactly that is and use it in my own work.

As this summer fast approaches (only finals week stands between me, lots of writing time, plenty of bottles of wine, and many many smoothies being made) I dread and look forward to Autumn Leaves. It's been so long, far too long, since I've sat down and worked my hardest on this. I was looking through some of my stuff from last spring when I was in Cork, Ireland and found this explanation of how Autumn Leaves came to be and description of what it's like to write:

"Autumn Leaves was a combination of two shorter stories and a more exaggerated expression of my own mental crisis during my youth and early teens. The first story became the relationship that is Autumn and Jake. The second was born from my fascination with the school shooting of Columbine, but I wanted to add my own spin to it. Story originally was called "The Shooting" (around '08) since that scene was the first I wrote. The rape element became the main focus of the story shortly after I started connecting these stories; it was a result of my great fear of sexual assault, my obsession with Law & Order: SVU, and interest in the pathology of rapists and effects of early childhood development. Mother aspect added shortly thereafter to give depth to Autumn's character and because of my new desire to explore the powerful relationship (and devastating destruction) of mother and daughter. This exploration took on new weight after my mom passed and became much more important to me and a stronger focus overall. I wanted to figure out how a relationship like this could fail so horribly and made me appreciate mine with my own mom even more. The plot outline was finished around early '09, by which point I had written (independently) the shooting scene and breakdown. The next year I started working from the beginning, finally meeting up to the shooting scene by the end. In '11 I've been spending my time editing, hoping to write more in '12 and finish by the end of that year."

 "When I write, it's like I'm no longer me in a sense. I become one with my imagination, with those parts of me hidden away in the darkest corners of my mind. Time has no length; seconds or hours could pass and I wouldn't know be able to tell the difference. Then, after these bursts of creative passion and clarity, I look at the paper or computer screen before me. 'How did I create this?' I wonder. I am proud of what I've done, but if I were asked to retrace how it is that I came up with these ideas, characters, symbolism, or even specific word choices, I have no satisfactory answer. They come to me in dreams mostly, my stories; it's my subconscious that's the brilliant and creative one. Not me. But when I'm actually writing, I don't know where the words come from since it doesn't feel conscious. I guess that's what makes it so special to me: the mystery of it all."

Maybe reading these insights I had last year when my mind wasn't so cluttered and I wasn't so stressed will give me the motivation to keep studying. If I study, I can get these finals over with and get working on what I love and keep forgetting that I love. I'd hate to let myself forget that for long.

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