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Updates, Novel-Writing and Nerdery

22 Oct

Another instance of blog neglect for me – a month and a half since my last post! D: .

I’d be more apologetic, but I’ll be honest with you reader-folk, work ate me. My job rocks, but every now and then a couple of hell weeks pop up and I get completely devoured. The last two weeks of September were deadline central, so I barely had the energy to get comics drawn, let alone blog. I even neglected my Minecraft playing, and that’s when you know things are going to hell in a handbasket.

I am still alive though, somehow, since that last week of deadline-chasing gave me the stress cold from hell, which turned into the sinus infection from hell because I’m an idiot and decided I was too busy to go to the doctor. I did finally make it, and I’m just finishing up a ten day cycle of antibiotics that have made me feel much, much less like death, which I am grateful for.

As well as working for the last one and a half months, I went on vacation briefly, as I detail at my other blog, since it was a very geeky vacation. I returned home with a bag 20 pounds heavier due to all the books I bought. Because that’s just how I roll.

So now it’s October. My birthday is in just over a week, and I turn 24. Not sure if I’m ready for that, but time stops for no one, so I plan on just accepting it and using the day as a good excuse to go out for sushi.

I’m still mostly a hermit. Last night we had a Rapture party, since apparently the world was supposed to end. We watched Red State and Dogma and ate soup. That’s about as social as I’ve been.

I’m also still drawing comics. My comic is still updating 3 times a week. It’s almost November, so I’m gearing up for NaNoWriMo 2011. I admit though, I’ve gone for Novel Rebellion this year because I couldn’t wait a month to start the book, so I’m most likely going to be writing a series for the rest of the year. My book, Undertaker, has turned into a series of at least six titled The Undertaker Chronicles, and the first book, Necromancer, is in process. I expect to complete that book in November, and continue on to book two, Collector, after that first 70-80k. Did I mention I’m going for 100k this year? I’m tired of not getting shit done, and this seems like the time to do it. Thus, November will be a writing frenzy, and I’ll most likely be on here blogging about it, since I’m tired of not blogging. I miss it. It’s fun, I get to ramble about silliness and vent about my days. At least partially – this is a public blog, and my coworkers live on the internet, so don’t expect work stories. Things are getting better at the workplace though, so part of that is I won’t have much to complain about.

Expect a writing-related blog post later this weekend, a little less vague than this one. I want to use this blog for my NaNo progress this year. Geek-related posts will be over at Not Your Gamer Girlfriend. Wordcounts and story progress will be here.

So, and I’m holding myself to it now, more blogging for the rest of 2011. Hope you still stick around to read 🙂

 

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News from a Micro-World

6 Sep

Another Tuesday. Jeff found out that he’s gainfully employed once more today, at my current place of work no less, so I took him out for too much sushi and a walk around Barnes and Noble. We’re both very full now and getting ready to watch some Castle, though I’m also webbing and he’s turning the air blue trying to figure out what the hell trying to make Dead Island work has done to his graphics card. Kettle’s on, waiting for a boil and some tea. So far a hot cup of tea is the closest thing I have to a cure for insomnia.

When we were at the bookstore I saw that they’ve started making statues of Stainboy, and they’re selling them along with statues of Oyster Boy for Tim Burton’s new book, The Melancholy Death of Oyster Boy. I may go back. I’ve always loved Stainboy. Because I’m a closet goth and Burton hipster who used to watch the Stainboy cartoons before anyone knew what they were.

This show, Castle, it’s really good except occasionally the songs they play before the intro and the end credits are so awful it makes me want to die a little.

I’m actually not doing that all right. Sad to say. Not to go into it here, but life’s definitely throwing a few emotional curve balls my way. I’m surviving, but the early mornings, long hours and high stress situations aren’t helping. It could be worse, it could always be worse, but that’s small comfort when I’m feeling stuck. Very stuck. No way to turn in my box. it’s a spacious box, and it’s fairly comfortable, but it’s still locked. Still a prison.

/melodrama.

Still posting comics. Still happy with how the art is progressing and the story’s unfoldings. Those have minimal chance of stopping soon, so that’s another good thing.

Sunday night Jeff and I couldn’t figure out what to do while we hung out, having just marathoned TV shows and gone to a cookout at my folk’s house, so we decided to start a comic project together. More on that later, we’re still in the conceptual planning stage.

And I’ve decided my previously determined upcoming NaNoWriMo 2011 novel, Undertaker, is going to happen earlier than predicted. The characters won’t let their little hooks out of my brainstem. More on that later too. If I can get it done before November, as well as going insane I’ll have another novel ready to go.

My life is a juggling game of creative projects. I do prefer it that way.

Other than that nothing to report. My brain is still damaged and I’m spontaneously bursting into tears for no good reason. I’m also not eating much. Working on it though. Jeff helps. it’s what he does. That and fix his computer. Dead Island is running again. And get jobs. Good jobs. I’m proud of him, and looking forward to seeing him around the office. It may be a little weird that we work in the same place, but we’ll be doing different things and both stupid busy to boot. So it’ll work out. I rather think it’ll be great.

I’ve been watching the new season of Doctor Who with my friend Beta. It’s awesome, but Matt Smith’s head still looks like a potato.

That’s all for now. Hope you all have survivable weeks with swiftly impending weekends.

 

Frenetic Waltz

13 Aug

Good day internet friends. It’s been almost a month since I updated here, due to my aforementioned promotion to a new position at work combined with moving. To say it’s been a little frantic is by far an understatement. So here’s what’s been going on:

Work, Money, etc. 

So yes. Promotion. I work 40 hours instead of 28ish, starting at 8 AM every day Monday through Friday, and while it’s quite exhausting, I think I’m getting a handle on it. I’m listening to a insane number of audiobooks these days, going through between two and a half a week depending on the length of the book. Recent books I’ve devoured include Haunted, Rant (Both by Chuck Palahniuk), The Lost World (Michael Crichton), Dreamcatcher (Stephen King), Fool, A Dirty Job (both by Christopher Moore) and I’m currently listening to How to Live Safely in a Science Fictional Universe by Charles Yu.

Despite this literary joy (Seriously, I haven’t enjoyed reading this much since before I went to college) I’m rather exhausted. Work is an ever-changing environment and while sometimes I can cope with that, sometimes the mental exhaustion and sleep deprivation drives me to urges to go sit in the bathroom and cry for no reason other than I can’t really believe that this is what I should do for the rest of my life.

Today my first paycheck arrived. The first thing I bought? Three volumes of Neil Gaiman’s Sandman. One of my goals is to expand my graphic novel collection, and Sandman is a good place to start in my mind. Other things this paycheck will go to include groceries, savings for a new bicycle (or my next tattoo, whichever one I want to get first :3 ) and probably some art supplies.

Art

Comic is still updating, and it’s going well. Not to give spoilers, but we’re rapidly approaching the end of Part I, and I’m excited to continue drawing it. So don’t worry folks, I may be exhausted, but I’m going to keep drawing Thursday’s Child until my limbs fall off. I am debating making a ‘real’ website for it over a tumblr feed, so if any of you nice folk have tips for starting up a comic website, please send them my way, as I’m a complete noob and haven’t the foggiest clue where to start. I’ll give you bragging rights, cookies, whatever. ❤ I just want something easy to navigate with cast pages and other pages. Like comicpress. Can anyone teach my how to use comicpress?

Yes, I am a noob. You had to ask?

Writing 

I’m getting there. Still have half-a-dozen novel ideas battling to the death to get my attention. I’m hoping to get something done before NaNo this year, but it doesn’t seem likely. That said, I’ve deliberately set aside time from my comic schedule to write this november, so I WILL get a novel written. It’s gonna happen, it’s gonna be awesome.

Apartment

We moved two weeks ago. Our new apartment is glorious and wonderful. We’ve seriously cooked every single night we’ve lived here, which is a huge HUGE record for us since we used to live off takeout and restaurant food. I’ve put pictures up on Google + for the curious/nosey. If you don’t have G+, I have invites 🙂

Future

*sigh* this… this will probably need a separate post. I’ve been doing some insane soul searching lately and I have a lot to say about it. So hopefully i’ll get that up here later today or tomorrow. Needless to say, things are happening.

Other stuff

I no longer have a car. The car is now my sister’s. This is a wee bit inconvenient, but the fact that I’ve walked a minimum of two miles a day for the last two week compared to the zero miles of the past is huge for me.

That’s the quick update. Now it’s time for me to throw together some breakfast and bake some bread.

Self-Deprecation Seems Okay: Mini-Essay

5 Apr

You can’t live right if you hate your life.

I’m serious. If you hate your life, what you do with your days isn’t living, it’s an uncomfortable imitation. We sit and we stare at the world passing us by, converting oxygen into CO2 and food into feces. Breathing and shitting isn’t the only purpose to our existence, but sometimes it might as well be.

It might as well be because we hate who we are, hate who we see in the mirror every day even if we try to paint our faces and pin the corners of our mouths into smiles. Self-loathing is the new status quo ladies and germs, and its so cliché it’s accepted and expected.

I don’t live right most of the time. Most days I wake up hungover and feeling like last night was a mistake I won’t live down. I feel hungover even when I spent the night before sober, my mind a mess from the dreams of the night before, from the toils of existing. My working day is a haze of computer screens and fingers on keyboards, my nights mostly solitary, also mostly in front of screens. My computer is less an accessory and more an appendage, my gateway to an outside world I try to avoid even on my good days.

I make elaborate plans for self-improvement involving work-out schedules and the proper intake of sustenance, but find myself sitting on my ass three days later surrounded by empty bags of chips that smell of fake cheese and somewhat of shame.

Shame smells like cheese in a can. It smells like snack cakes and delivery pizza. Once or twice a week I scrub off my shame with a home-cooked meal, pasta or a grilled cheese, because I’m too poor to afford shame 24-7. I spend my money on long nights and poor decisions, on videogames and liquor, on cake mix and frosting, on the gas I need to run my car, on groceries that I select in the store carefully, trying desperately to do math in my head despite suffering from discalcula because what loser carries a calculator in a grocery store to make sure they only spend ten dollars on food to last a week?

Self-deprecation comes to us as naturally as breathing. It’s ingrained in us from the beginning and holds on with sharp and sticky fingers. It’s like a little monkey, a gremlin, some mutant creature clutching our back and whispering hateful thoughts into our receptive ears.

I hate myself most of the time. I wake up and stumble into the bathroom, staring at my hair that never sits right and my ass that isn’t perky enough and my tits that refuse to stay the same size as each other and the same shirt I’ve worn to bed since high school and I glare at my blurry reflection and tell it I hate it and wish it would just go fucking die already so I could stop dealing with it and everything it represents. It represents the degree I got that wasn’t worth anything. The half-dozen half-baked novels sitting on the hard-drive of my computer, all of them mediocre when read despite hours, days, weeks, months of hard work. The job I go to with the hope of advancement even though I’m only working part time at a job a monkey could do better. The friends who clearly don’t know me well enough or they would have run for the hills by now. The boyfriend I feel I don’t deserve no matter how many times he tells me I’m wrong.

When I was a kid I hated myself so much I was violent. I didn’t start fights or ram my head against walls, but that would have been less stereotypical. Less cliché.

Maybe that’s part of being a writer. Being a bit of a cliché. At least I’ve quit the cigarettes, even if the alcohol shows no sign of stopping.

We keep trucking though. We’re human, and we know we aren’t perfect no matter how many people try to put us on pedestals with their words and expectations. No matter how much we hate ourselves for our lack of perfection.

I’m occasionally guilty of loving myself. Of being okay with my out of shape body and never sits right hair, of liking my wonky tits and the shirts I’ve had since high school that I still wear for the memories. Of sitting down at my computer desk and typing up a novel that I want to write because even if it sucks, it’s a story I have to tell. Sometimes I think about how hard I worked to get through my BA, how far I’ve come since high school and the sad, broken girl lying on the floor of her bathroom, not caring if she gets blood on the tiles because then at least she’s feeling something. I feel lucky that I work in a basement with a dozen other nerds who type at inhuman speeds, that I can read at the speed of light and make ten bucks an hour part time practically right out of college. Lucky that I have people in my life who love to watch funny movies and mix strange drinks and make really bad penis jokes. That I have a boyfriend who loves me no matter how down I get on myself.

Maybe I’m mediocre. Maybe I’ve fucked up in too many ways to count. Maybe I’m just a hack.

But hating myself for it is no way to live my life. It isn’t living.

So, sometimes, if I try really hard and nobody else is around to see, I love my life. And in doing so, just for a little while, I really live.

 

 

All the Updates

18 Mar

Because I’ve been neglectful, here are various updates regarding the state of The Uncomfort Zone:

General Life Update:

I just finished week 2 at the new job, my parents are out of town on alternating weekends meaning I’m spending a lot of time keeping both my mother and father company. And by that I mean eating them out of house and home. Jeff’s about to go on Spring break, which he will spend gaming and studying while I work. It’s Friday, I have a beer in my hand, and I”m gonna make fajitas for dinner. After I clean the kitchen.

Work Update:

Like I said, it’s the end of week two at the New Job, and things are going well. I’m still typing up comments on surveys, and passing the time listening to the Drunk Tank podcast from the guys at Rooster Teeth. Other than that, I’ve been spending my breaks reading Jim Butcher books (currently reading Furies of Calderon) and fighting the possessed demon vending machine. Also, I’ve been occasionally taking the bus to save gas.

Money Update:

I am poor. As dirt. Assuming dirt is as poor as I am. I get paid for honest reals a week from today, so I get to experiment with stretching my meager money resources until then. At least I still have beer.

Social Life Update:

I joined a new D&D group, which won’t start until the end of the month. It’s a Pathfinder game, and I’m playing a half-elf druid, who doesn’t have a name yet, but I’ll get there. Other than that I’ve been a complete hermit.

Art/Writing Update:

Due to the abject poverty I’m hoping to start trying to get some of my stories published, work on my novel and start offering commissions on DeviantArt. That stuff’s all in the works anyway. I’ll get to it… eventually.

Health and Food Update:

Well, I’m walking more. I’m hoping to get back into actually exercising next week now that I’ve got something resembling a work routine. I’m eating as well as I can on a poverty budget, but taking sammiches to work definitely helps with that. That and cooking more, despite the constant state of disaster our kitchen is in.

TV Update:

I finished watching Ugly Betty. It was cute, and I really enjoyed it. Now I have a void in my life where TV should be. Any suggestions folks?

Gaming Update:

I’m not done with Pokemon Black yet, which is why I haven’t blogged about it yet. Sadly, I think I burned myself out a little playing HeartGold for a week straight before Black came out. But I’m almost 4 badges in, and started with Snivy. I promise I will write a real review when I’ve finished. I’m also playing Oblivion on the 360, which is definitely fun. I’ve been blogging about my gaming habits on my new side blog, Not Your Gamer Girlfriend, over here. You should check it out. It’s fun to write 🙂

Trimming Fat, Cutting Costs

8 Mar

In case you haven’t noticed, gentle readers, I am poor. Unemployment lasting almost two months and having to wait for my first paycheck until close to the end of the month will do that to you. What with the cost of gas and food rising exponentially with every passing day, it’s a wonder any of us in entry-level wage-slave positions can afford to exist in this climate. Thus, as I look at my sad bank account desperately trying to keep afloat in this depressing time, I look at my budget and consider various things I can do to reduce costs in my daily life. Here are three small ways I”m trying to cut costs, some comedic and others in all seriousness:

1) I’m being Less Picky

I’m a foodie at heart. Food hates me and my finicky digestive system, so being able to eat food that tastes good is the only joy I get from sustenance. This is definitely difficult when good food costs you an arm and a leg. I’ve managed to save myself a good twenty bucks a week by cutting soda out of my diet, but that doesn’t account for how much juice costs (almost as much if you want stuff that’s good for you), or how much the rest of your grocery supply costs you. So I’ve been reducing everywhere I can. I just keep telling myself that when I start getting regular paychecks, I’ll have enough to eat well, and should resign myself to PB and J for a month or two for the sake of my bank account. Much as I want to shop at my local co-op and buy perfectly fresh organic foods all the time, my wallet can’t take it. Thus, it’s off to the trenches of Hell-Mart for a dose of cheap bulk and scary people.

2) The Commute

I now work downtown. Downtown Lincoln is a parking ordeal, and if you have to go there five days a week, you end up spending thirty to fifty dollars on parking. Awful. Balls-ass awful. Thus, I’ve come up with other ways to deal with my commute. Including taking the bus, which will work for me at least once or twice a week when I don’t have immediate post-work obligations or I get done with work early enough (the last chance I have to catch the bus is 5:45. Won’t help me on a day I work until six). The bus plan has the double benefit of saving me gas money, since gas is definitely about $3.60 a gallon in my neck of the woods. My other commuting option is parking in one of the nearby neighborhoods where parking isn’t restricted and then walking the rest of the way downtown. I could use the exercise, that’s for sure.

3) Be a hermit

I don’t eat out. I don’t go out, or if I do I don’t drink. Going out costs money. Eating in nice restaurants? Also costs money. Going to movies? I already pay for netflix (well, Jeff does, but you get my point). I remain sequestered in this tiny room, occasionally lonely, but not spending money. Of course, I also have incredibly generous friends, who insist they pay for everything when we go out. They are my heroes, and I owe them my life.

Those are the start. Hopefully I’ll find a few more to add to that list as my money supply shrinks and shrinks.

Marching Ahead

1 Mar

March is apparently going to be the month of awful puns, so you’re welcome in advance for the groan therapy you will experience.

Other things March is going to be good for:

1) Rediscovering my local libraries. I dropped by there this afternoon to pick up the next Dresden Files book and also grabbed a few other fun reads (A Meg Cabot book and the first in the Scott Pilgrim series). That and the facilities are crazy shiny awesome and modernised. I think I know where to go to study for the LSAT next time.

2) New job! I start this Friday, and I’m crazy excited about it. Call me a dork, but I’ve been unemployed since January 16th and that’s made me just a little on the crazed side. I don’t react well to a large expanse of nothing on the horizon. Plus the job involves things I rock at: data entry, computer work and copying.

3) Pokemon. I already babbled about my HeartGold team earlier this week (and they, plus or minus a few team-members), and this Sunday I get to run to the mall like a six-year-old on Christmas and get my brand-spanking new copy of Pokemon Black! Which I will then play obsessively and blog about incessantly.

4) Income. There are no words for how much I miss being able to go to the grocery store and not obsessively try to do math in my head and give up my favourite things for the sake of being able to put gas in my car. Rest assured, my first paycheck will mostly be spent on grocery items. I’m cool like that.

5) Body art. It’s been almost a year since I got my first tattoo. I very much hope to have another one in the not too distant future. ❤ I’m thinking it’ll be my Star Wars tattoos.

6) Friends. I owe a lot of really awesome people a round of drinks, since my friends have been here for me every step of the way during my little unemployment stint. So, crazy amounts of thanks to all my awesome friends: Sam, Jess, Kelsey, Karen, both Dans, Caryn, Andrew, Paul, Adam, Beta, Clay, Heidee, Steven, Mark, all my other lovely and amazing friends, and of course my ever tolerant, somehow-hasn’t-murdered-me-despite-my-whining, awesome boyfriend Jeff. Thank you all for being fantastic and awesome and putting up with my unemployed rambles. My first paycheck comes out, and the drinks are on me. 🙂

7) Writing. I’ve got novels coming out of my ears, short stories flailing around for attention, sketches to work on and a huge music library to inspire me. It’s a good month for creativity folks.

8) Health and well-being. I’m on day eight of no soda, and even though it’s getting a lot harder to keep that going, I’m surviving with cranberry juice and delicious green tea. Exercise is also still going all right, as is eating better, though I still have miserable cravings for pizza.

Onward to March! Here’s hoping it’s gonna be a fun month folks! New chapters in life abound for all!

 

Coveting

23 Feb

So, because writing these things down will keep me sane, here’s a list of things I want to do when I have money:

1) Join a yoga class. Or a gym or something. Yoga sounds appealing because I think it’ll help me with all the spiritual turmoil as well as the miserable out-of-shapedness business I’m dealing with. Seriously. I shouldn’t feel the burn just for walking three and a half miles at a slight incline. That or I want to start swimming again, which means buying fancy shampoo so my hair doesn’t turn green.

2) Join a local co-op. Sounds like crazy hippie talk, but I want to shop, eat, and live more local and more healthily, and besides, the nearest local co-op is crazy awesome and totally sweet. Their deli has the best pasta salad I’ve ever had ever in my life.

3) Follow up from 2 is to eat more healthy, local foods, and keep up this crazy no soda diet I’m dealing with. If I eat more healthy, I’ll just feel better in general. So that’d include buying from the co-op, and occasionally venturing across town to Trader Joe’s, which is the best source of healthy junk food I’ve ever found.

4) Save up to get a sweet-ass apartment with Jeff in August. And by sweet-ass I mean this one place that has two bedrooms AND a spiral staircase.

5) Save up more to decorate said sweet-ass apartment with awesome kitchen appliances, wall hangings, furnishings, posters and so on.  So it’ll actually feel like home and not just a temporary fixture like most places I’ve lived.

6) Travel. As well as needing to check out law schools in other states, I miss my sister and I want to visit her in England before she comes back.

7) Get more tattoos. I love my first one, and I got it about a year ago. I could definitely enjoy having a few more. I’m thinking I’ll get my Star Wars tattoos next. Because I am a geek.

8) Buy a new wardrobe. In particular some skirts, sweatpants, other random things. I’m tired of looking at myself in the mirror and going ‘ugh, my clothes look all weird today’. That and I have a weakness for long flowing skirts.

9) Pay my parents back for all the money they’ve been helping me out with in the last couple of months. Unemployment would be a lot more miserable without their help and love. My parents truly rock.

10) Buy more bookshelves. If you could see the overflow problem I have in my room, you’d understand the reasoning. That and Jeff and I are going to end up combining book collections when we get a place, and that means more bookshelves! Preferably of the floor-to-ceiling variety. One of the reasons I’m reluctant to move out of state is that it means leaving my book collection behind, at least for a while. This would sadden me immensely.

11) Get sushi once a week. Because few things in life make me happier. Delicious food that doesn’t make my stomach panic and curl up in fear? That’s a big ‘yes please’. Even just the vegetable kind makes my life better.

12) Videogames. I’m budgeting my meager unemployment moneys to buy Pokemon Black on the 6th of March, but I’d like to have some others too. Jeff has a lot of them, but I’d love to have at least a few of my own to squee over and suffer addiction from.

I’m sure I covet plenty of other random things. This is a small portion of my materialistic madness.