Saturday, September 17, 2016

Muddled Awkward Dread [smiley face]

I'm researching how to make mint mojitos for bink's birthday dinner tonight. 
Luckily I googled "how to muddle mint" before I smashed the fresh mint leaves to a pulp: turn out you don't want to break their veins and release the bitter chlorophyll inside--you just gently press the leaves...

There are so many things to know in the world.

I've been inching forward with writing my book: 
it's actually working to write for 30 minutes at a time--really write, not stop to research or edit.
But I know I'll have to rewrite what I'm writing:
I told bink it's like digging a hole you know you're going to fill in, and then dig again, deeper.

"You know," I told her, "I feel..." 
I paused. 
"–awkward," I said at the same moment she said, "–dread."

Awkward dread. 
That about sums it up. There's no way out of it that I've discovered---I just have to tolerate this uncomfortable, anxious, and muddled feeling.

I'm sure the book will be fine. 
But secretly I'd like it to be better than "fine", as much as that's possible for such a book, which is closer to a textbook than to original research or memoir. But some textbook-type books can be pretty great. (Rare, but possible.) I mean, there's no room for flights of fancy, but you can arrange facts next to other facts that set them off, to good effect.

Like mint mojitos: 
who'd think of putting garden mint with tropical lime? So simple and so effective.

Ditto, it amazed me to realize the role of economics + technology in Star Trek fandom. Fans famously--and successfully--rallied to Star Trek's defense when the network was going to cancel the show after its 2nd year, in 1968. 
Local TV stations wouldn't buy Star Trek to run in syndication unless there were enough episodes to make it worth it, and two seasons worth of episodes was not worth it.

Fans knew that if Star Trek wasn't renewed for that third year, it would sink without a trace--there'd be no way to rewatch it.

So they were motivated.

^ Via

But kids now won't know that--in fact, I didn't know that detail about syndication either (and like so many others, that's how I watched Star Trek first--as reruns every day after school).
Now you can watch a show with a handful episodes, whenever and as often as you like. 
So, just setting that out clearly and well is pretty great.

Ok, must go finish getting the birthday dinner ready now.


Bink said...

Nice little bit of dialogue in there. I know you think dialogue especially tricky to write, but I really do think you do it well.

Bink said...

Related--sort of funny and true:

Fresca said...

Hey, That's a pretty great article---thanks!
"23. Reward yourself. Not just with breaks but with more happiness. Finish a day’s worth of writing? That’s worth something. I dunno that it’s worth like, a new car or a vacation, but it’s worth a piece of chocolate or something. Listen, we’re basically dogs, okay? We don’t do well with negative reinforcement, because then we learn to fear and hate the task even as we perform it. But we do hella well with positive reinforcement.
Hack your dog-brain. Give yourself a treat, damnit. You deserve it, you cheeky poodle, you."