marshtide: (Default)
1. I'm trying out 750 words at [personal profile] littlebutfierce's recommendation and have in fact written 800 words this morning. So we'll see!


2. En Riktig Kvinna is continuing to be both really useful and really depressing. I've been reading about the background of social darwinism and race hygine and how these ideas can be traced forward to a lot of the construction of difference - both between genders and other groups - we have going on at the moment. About how the ways of describing women's biology have changed over time in ways which cannot only be explained with scientific developments, but which seem to have a coupling to contemporary social ideals.

Another book which falls under the heading of: I did basically know this, but thank fuck for good structure. Not new ideas but ones that I now have a firmer grasp on, I think.


3. Queerness in manga, especially from the 70s. We have:

- Rose of Versailles
- Claudine
- Oniisama e
- Orpheus no mado
- Heart of Thomas
- A, A'
- They Were 11
- A Drunken Dream
- Marginal (later, but relevant)
- Kaze to Ki no Uta
- The Poe Clan
- Shiroi Heya no Futari
- Applause (slightly later, and of which we only have the prequel, Bruges)
- Maya's Funeral Procession
- Eroica

Earlier related things:
- Rows of Cherry Trees
- Princess Knight
- girls magazines & their aesthetic

Later related things:
- Utena
- Ooku
- Sailor Moon
- all the yaoi

Misc:
- Takarazuka

... that I can think of! I have a big folder on an external hard drive which isn't plugged into this computer right now, so I'm probably forgetting stuff, but tell us about our glaring omissions, please. Note that we're not just talking about stuff which is positive about queerness (though putting together a talk about homophobia in this stuff is a project for another time), or stuff which is in every way a brilliant story. If you have links as well, including to raws or raws with a summary of some kind, then I will love you forever. (I am on the trail of some raws of other series by Hagio Moto and Keiko Takemiya, we'll see - I don't have that much info in English about them though. *wry*)
marshtide: (Default)
Accomplishments:

- we went to town today with the wheelchair and it went really great. I was even feeling alive enough when we came back to do more stuff around the house.

- I cleaned the patio. The heaps of leaves are gone and the plant pots are in a stack in a corner and we could actually sit out there. The corner flower bed is going to become a little herb patch. I am brilliant. (I didn't even break myself doing that either.)

- AND THEN I did part of dinner as well!


Resolution:

- start writing again. Write something every day. Dedicate a specific period of the day to it. fiction or non-fiction is fine.
marshtide: (Snufkin - The traveller)
I change my mind on writing several times a day.

1. I can't write. I don't have anything to say and I don't have a sufficiently beautiful style to get away with not saying much.

2. I can write, but I haven't found what it is I should be writing about or how.

3. I have some loose ideas but no clue how to pin them down and write them.

4. Why the hell am I even thinking about this.

etc.

Damn it, frustrated creative urges.

Also, I have a headache.
marshtide: (Default)
1. When I saw my doctor last week she took me to task for not believing in my own point of view, emotions, ideas. It's true; I absolutely don't. It makes it hard to speak, post, write, decide what to have for dinner. I am saying this out loud, again, because I need to tell myself, again (and again and again and again), that it's a perception error, not reality, that I have no worth & nothing to say.

Not being the most talented person in the world is not the same as being worthless. Being wrong is not a disaster. Food is not out to get me.* I'm definitely allowed to post in my own space about things I don't think other people will be very interested in; "I wanted to say it" is a reason sometimes & being boring isn't actually a crime. Not everything has to be perfect. Producing imperfect results doesn't mean I'm a terrible human being. Maybe I'm really not a good writer like wot my brain tells me so often, but if so, that doesn't mean I have nothing to offer anyone at all.

* except assorted grains, which totally are.


2. Isen på Riddarfjärden
smäller som gevär
Blåljus vid Tegelbacken
Våren är här
Du står i spegelsalen
med ett brännbollsträ
Där ute väntar natten
på att stan ska implodera


I'm kind of fascinated.

("The ice on Riddarfjärden
cracks like guns
Blue lights at Tegelbacken
The spring is here
You stand in the hall of mirrors
with a rounders bat
Out there the night waits
for the city to implode"

... or something like that. I think.)

(There! This is boring and totally pointless because I refuse to elaborate at this time on why I find it interesting and I'M POSTING IT ANYWAY. Take THAT, brain!)


3. My writing process right now:

On Monday, I opened a word document. I wrote five words.

On Tuesday I turned the five words into an actual sentence by the cunning addition of punctuation, and added a second sentence. I got annoyed, opened a new word document and made notes on something completely different.

Today I went back to the first document and changed around a few things in the first two sentences, turned them into a paragraph, and began working on a second paragraph. It was about then that my subconscious realised what it was letting me get away with and decided that the sky must be about to fall.

I do wish it wouldn't do that.
marshtide: (Default)
I will write a story about the sea between 1,000 and 10,000 words by the 10th of July. (This is where it would help if I owned a boat right now.)


It hasn't been much of a year for writing. I try not to go on about writing angst because, you know, it's writing angst. It tends to sound the same all over the place, from everyone. I do have it, though, in a way. Most of all I think any attempts to write suffer from the same thing as my attempts to do absolutely anything else: the fear that whatever I do will be somehow wrong. Not that it will be "bad writing" or "poorly developed" or "boring", though OK, I'm not wild on those ideas either - but that I will somehow do something so hideously, outrageously wrong that no-one will ever speak to me again and I won't be able to live with myself either. I can, I should add, suffer from this fear when thinking about whether to put the mugs away on the right or left side of the cupboard. It is emphatically not rational.

Which I guess is what a badly managed anxiety disorder looks like! There you go.

(I keep telling myself that one of these days I should work up some non-fiction ideas and maybe try pitching some stuff out there, but can you imagine! Talking about Actual Factual Stuff! Me! The things my brain can do with that idea! It's utterly convinced that I have nothing worth saying & should just shut up at the best of times, and when I'm only talking to a tiny online journal audience in a fairly informal way. Which is why I am maybe kind of bad at posting.)
marshtide: (Default)
A bitty entry this time, because I have a few scraps I want to gather up and get rid of that I can't make into full posts in their own right at this exact (everyone-is-sick-and-chaos-reigns) moment.


1.

Have you heard of Victoria Benedictsson? I hadn't! This might just be because I'm not very well-read, but then again, it might not be. I will add the disclaimer here that I haven't actually read her books yet, though as soon as I can get to the library there's a copy of her novel Money (Pengar) waiting for me to collect. I am pretty excited about this. It's a criticism of the inequality of marriage at the time and of the sexual double standard between men and women!

Victoria Benedictsson was a Swedish writer, working in the late 19th century. She had a pretty eventful and possibly quite scandalous life, and struggled really hard to be accepted as artistically legitimate (often being dismissed as writing about women's issues). She was concerned with women's place in society and female sexuality, and her writing apparently has a really strong element of social commentary. She also inspired/influenced (and also possibly horrified) Ibsen and Strindberg, who I bet you have heard of, because they're basically The Dudes of Scandinavian theatre & literature. (The library I worked at last year in the UK had a Scandinavian literature section, which was composed almost entirely of Ibsen, with two plays by Strindberg. That was all. For reference.) Right now she's getting a bit more attention for the fact that her writing is basically full of pretty feminist ideas, but for ages people talked about her largely as that woman who had an affair with a literary critic and then killed herself because it didn't work out, which is unfortunate. (Especially as she didn't kill herself for those reasons, as far as can be discerned from the sources avaliable, which include, you know, detailed diary entries.)

Probably more on this topic at a later date, when I'm better informed.


2.

I've come to a realisation lately: namely, that traditional narrative is just not really my best friend. I tried to be friends with it for a few years and I think it mostly produced stories which were fragmented anyway (but, in absolute fairness, sometimes worked quite well like that) and stories which I could not possibly finish, and while we'll certainly remain on speaking terms I think we need some space from each other. The problem with it is maybe that it implies to some degree a worldview that I have problems with, of definite beginnings and middles and ends, patterns which resolve themselves into meaning, etc., and while I can happily accept that this is exactly what a lot of stories need and that there are very good reasons for telling them in that sort of way I don't think I would actually want to write like that because I am... not really writing for those reasons, not really interested in what happens so much as the people it happens to (or around or because of or in the mind of or...) and the places it happens in. If I am interested in patterns it's maybe more why people perceive them the way they do, and the ways in which they try to make stories out of their lives.

Possibly this is some kind of terrible difficulty, but I'm not really convinced; I think it's more of a difference, and one I'm happy to play with, which means I should write a different kind of story. It's the sort of thing where just accepting it is likely to make for slightly happier writing. I'm interested in building up fragments into something of a story and I'm interested in ambiguity and making people join the dots up to a certain point, though of course one has to play carefully in this territory.

Looking at the authors I really love in a way which goes beyond "this is a good and thought-provoking read" or whatever and into the territory of starry-eyed admiration, I don't think this should be very surprising. Virginia Woolf? Experimental stylist fond of stream-of-consciousness and writing people more than writing stories. Tove Jansson? Penchant for constructing novels out of short stories in a way which works mysteriously well to create a sense of who people are; very little happens but a lot is communicated; not really a progression along a line so much as a collection of snapshots that could be rearranged and played around with. Murakami? Books full of signs which signify... well, what, exactly? A lot about creating a sense that there's a pattern and not providing any kind of key to it, and having this actually be satisfying. His endings resolve nothing and I like it.

I'm also more in love with magical realism and making the ordinary otherwise threatening or unsettling or strange than I am with just writing the ordinary or with writing the outright extraordinary. I think there is a space there for subtle wrongness and a sense of disconnection from the day-to-day, and though that genre doesn't necessarily do that and things which do that aren't necessarily of that genre I think it's an area which would be fun to play in. Any sort of lense which produces strangeness would work, because, well, that's how the world feels to me. I guess I am about the sense that things don't quite fit and that the supposedly ordinary can be the most disconcerting thing, because it often is to me.

This realisation brought to you partly by a conversation in which I got frustrated with Alice Munro's stories for being beautifully crafted and all about women's daily lives (OK, resoundingly straight women's daily lives with heavy emphasis on the men therein whether as a presence or an absence, which may just have been a part of the problem for me when it came to identifying with them) and absolutely boring to me because they feel like a part of a legendary Normal World I have never actually set foot in and wouldn't really enjoy if I got there. I simply can't connect to them, though they are probably really pretty good if you can.


3.

A couple of links.

a. I've decided I really like the community [community profile] queering_holmes. I decided this largely because they seem to like Graham Robb's Strangers over there and because this could just be the place I'm looking for with Queer Victorian Stuff and an interest in Holmes as linked in to that context. Maybe I can air my theories about Irene Adler. Sometime when I'm feeling confident enough to be sociable. For now I'll sit and watch and feel a tiny bit gleeful.

b. I'm not actually any good at Japanese history - I've studied the bits that could reasonably be covered by a course about indigenous cultures worldwide from an archaeological perspective, which is to say, groups like the Ainu, and I've read a bunch of books about homosexuality among Samurai and monks, and I've absorbed various other information in a completely haphazard way so that the end result is a bit surreal - but here is a post about Samurai Champloo from someone who seems rather better at it. I love Samurai Champloo, for the record, and I love it as a fun and gloriously irreverent series and as a piece of commentary and also for its amazingly choreographed fight scenes. But in this case we're talking about it as a series taking a good kick at the Samurai drama genre as a whole even while theoretically playing within its borders.
marshtide: (Default)
There are courses here for writing. They are not university courses, but some of them are apparently pretty good. Val spent this morning looking into this because she thought it looked as though it'd be good for me, and discovered that one can get money from the government to attend them which doesn't count against your allowance for university education, that they can be residential or not as you like, that the cost of being resident is not always very high (in fact in the cases we looked at it was surprisingly low), that they in a number of cases more focused on studying literature and then providing space to write and providing space for discussion than they are about Teaching How To Write.

I really never thought I'd be likely to even try and go on a course for writing-related things, or to a writing workshop, or anything, actually, because I'm a bit solitary and grouchy and am wary of these things. But it sounds within the realm of possibility, one of these days - mostly if I feel like I need a writing-related kick in the arse at some time when I'm actually fluent enough to do discussions in Swedish.

(Also on an education note, and not unrelated to the previous point, Stockholm university offers a course that takes one's Swedish up to academic level, which I'll almost certainly be taking when I'm done with SFI. And then I can go and become a librarian or get hold of something to push me to try harder with writing or, I don't know, study gender or history or queer theory or all of them or whatever I want, because the funding system is completely comprehensible and also? No tuition fees.)

Profile

marshtide: (Default)
Toft

December 2012

S M T W T F S
      1
2345678
9101112131415
16171819202122
23242526272829
30 31     

Style Credit

Syndicate

RSS Atom
Page generated Jun. 23rd, 2017 03:27 am
Powered by Dreamwidth Studios

Expand Cut Tags

No cut tags

Most Popular Tags