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Stranger Things Talk Bass
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May. 25th, 2016 @ 03:02 pm Stuff and things
What do you know? I can still log into my LJ. This might be the post of the year. Highlights of the last year and a half:

I've been to San Francisco, Denver and Montreal. Montreal was a trip I gave myself for my birthday because I'd wanted to go for a few years. Plus, I'd written a connected novel and novella set there. I wanted to see the real thing, but in a way it felt like I was location scouting my on story.

I'm back with the Japanese study after a lull. My next planned trip is Japan. I vow to get there if not in October this year (still researching) then sometime in 2017.

Last year I wrote every single day. Even if it was only 2 sentences, I wrote. With the slow and steady effort, I ended up with 3 novels, 1 novella and a short story. It took nearly $60 to print out at the end of the year (using single spacing and double sides). This year I was supposed to start revising. I've really not done that, and I feel a bit guilty about that.

I've also started cooking. Gourmet stuff. I hosted the family Christmas party, and it went really well. Inspired by that, I decided to cook more. Then in February, I saw a coworker who had a food box delivery (one of those national plans). I asked her for a referral, and I've been doing that ever since March. I actually have techniques and entry level skill now. It's rather impressive.

I practiced piano every day for about 2 months during the fall. One of my book characters is a concert pianist, and with him in my head, I was inspired to be my personal best. Then I stopped. Oh, well. It's still there if I want to.

So there are the highlights. Cheers to all.
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Neil Finn
Jan. 16th, 2015 @ 09:40 am Happy new year, happy old fiction
Current Mood: melancholymelancholy
I've been spending most of my social media time on Tumblr lately, and through that I finally joined AO3.

Doing so has been weird, and right now I'm in a mental funk that isn't a good one. Let's see if I can break it down in a coherent way.

*I have been writing, working on original fiction that was inspired by some of the fan fiction I had written. This is no surprise to people who've read this blog or know fannish me. *crickets*
*For the most part, I gave up writing fan fiction 6 years ago, but lately I'm doing more pieces. Ideas come. I write.
*Yesterday I discovered complete swaths of fan fiction (bandom, mostly, but some smut) that I'd forgotten I'd written. There are many pieces, and some of them are even good. Plus, I see how consistent I've been with my tropes and what interests me to write about.

*I'm a writer. I've written. I still have some mental hang-ups about what it means to be a writer. No, I am one. I've written quite a lot since I started writing fiction at age 25.
*As noted above, I'm consistent with the things I like.

*I wonder if I'm just writing the same things over again. It is said a lot of people who write get into a rut. I won't say my whole life has been a rut because that would be too drama queen. But still... the same stuff.

*I wrote a fictionalized version of myself in a fantasy story where I met my favorite celebrity because his and my work collided. The story is good! I wonder if there's a way to file the serial numbers off it and recycle it somehow. This is a "con," though, because I kind of miss that person I was in the story and the opportunities she had.

Since it was also a bittersweet romance, I'm bothered that nothing in my actual life has changed. People love me, and I love myself. But I don't have *that* kind of relationship that I've always wanted. It's depressing.
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Neil Finn
Nov. 10th, 2014 @ 11:23 am Doing NaNoWriMo again
This time I'm trying something I haven't ever done before: A western.

There is an attitude that I like about NaNo... the I don't care if it's horrible attitude.

I think that might be why I struggle so much with the main stories I want to write (that Wolfgang family story, for one). I do care if those are horrible, and if they are protected in my head, they can never be bad for real. Quite possibly that. Or it could be some other pop psychology.

Not directly NaNo, but I got myself a new car right before I started my first one in 2009. I just sent off the last payment for that car on Friday. What a good feeling.
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Eastwood Abed
Oct. 17th, 2014 @ 10:14 pm Gah, annoyed!
So I was talking to someone today (who shall remain nameless to protect her own identity), and I mentioned my French pen pal. No big deal. I've had this pen pal for 3 years or so, and she's a really lovely person. (I call her a pen pal because we do emails from time to time and the occasional thoughtful gift.)

Other person asks me if she's a lesbian.

Um... what?

There is so much wrong with that line of thinking.

She actually wanted to know if she was like another person who "likes women," and she wasn't meaning this as a compliment in either case.

So what is it? Is it that all women I meet online have to be in to other women? Who are you commenting about? Me or my mystery female friends?

I think she's seriously mixing up her fears. You all know the old predatory lesbian cliche. Plus, add the internet is full of perverts, and she gets... Every woman online must be a lesbian.

I've been fuming about this all evening. I just can't with the stupid.
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Oct. 5th, 2014 @ 09:55 am Rookie mistake
Another home ownership entry

Yesterday I went to the local large city to buy myself a new lawn mower, this one being a corded electric mower. I am still big on being environmentally conscious, and I never did have any luck with gas mowers.

The thing about people around me is that they have been telling me I need to buy and use a gas mower. Screw that. The only thing I need is for you to stop giving me unsolicited advice. The fastest way to get me not to do something is to tell me I need to or should. I know my own mind, thanks.

Anyhow, one of the risks of a corded electric mower is running over the extension cord. I thought I wouldn't fall for that. Wrong! Brand new cord, and cut it like anything. One the positive, I got through all the front of house and street side public green spaces before that happened.

My mower's still awesome and the right one for me. I'll just head to the big box store later to get a new extension cord.
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Sep. 22nd, 2014 @ 08:19 pm Ugh, home ownership!
So many of my friends said I'd regret home ownership. I've been in my house 4 months now. It's a nice house on a large corner lot.

My neighbor came to show me a hole on the property line and to say that he's going to get a lawyer to sue the city to fix it. Me, I'm wondering if it's really the city's responsibility. I obviously live down the hill from the neighbor. Of course there is rain runoff in my direction. That's the way the land is sloped. Doesn't mean the city should do anything about that.

His point is there is a problem in the sewer/city drainage. he wants me to stand with him so his case will be taken seriously. I have no problem with that in theory. I'm just not going to point fingers at the wrong party if I can help it.

He's a good guy, my neighbor, but he was being pushy. Me? I tend not to listen to what people tell me to do. It's my personality to dig my heels in, and when I finally started to stand up for myself, he retreated.

Ugh, people!

Ugh, my house!
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Neil Finn
Aug. 23rd, 2014 @ 03:36 pm A little bit oboe, a little bit writing
I played oboe today in my house for the first time. I've been living there three months. It was refreshing to not worry about neighbors so close they could be bothered by me, as I felt when I lived in the apartment. I was inspired by thinking of this one violinist character in one of my stories.

I thought of how well he could play and how I wished I could play like that. Then I realized I could play like that. It wasn't a pipe dream. I just had to do it.

My relationship with the oboe is somewhat similar to my relationship with the German language. I am surprised at how good I am at doing it considering the small amount of effort I put into it over all. Still, it is a think I very much like, and I take comfort in it.

Last Saturday I got out the pen, and I started writing again. I haven't written any fiction this year until then. I was going to work on this story I wrote up last April as an adaption of my longest, most epic Harry Potter fan fiction. (If Cassandra Clare can do it, so can I, but hopefully with less blatant connection and no plagiarism.) It felt good to write again and connect to my creative self.

I realized something while rereading my story. The story in my head and the story that I actually wrote. The one I wrote isn't very good yet. I found that comforting, though I was at a loss to explain why. Perhaps it is because I know it can only get better from here.

I was also doing some thinking about that epic fan fic because I was working diligently 2 years ago to finally finish the thing, which I'd started long before that and had languished for years in an unfinished state before the right words helped me get in gear.

I did some things with that story that I probably won't do again. There was sexual violence against the FMC. I don't need to make her a victim to make her strong or discover her power. Yes, I did that, but not again. I had love triangles, which I was reminded of when looking at the blog Love is Not a Triangle. I also had an unintentional Standard Romance Plot (SRP, thanks again to Love is Not a Triangle blog) wherein the lady and her eventually chosen male break up near the end only to get back together with a short time to spare.

I honestly hadn't thought my story telling was so cliche. I still think that fic was a good one. My adaptation, though, has little in common with it other than a redhead who starts fires with her brain falls in love with a werewolf.
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Mark Hart
Aug. 15th, 2014 @ 08:04 am Some things from the last week
I realized that I wasn't posting much here at all any more, but it wasn't that I had stopped using social media. I had just been very fannish over at Tumblr. Yes, I have a tumblr, and most of the time it's nice. sometimes I am reminded how I am definitely not a teen or college student. There is nothing wrong with being either, but I am happy in my mid-life in a way that I wasn't then.

So here are some non-fandom thoughts for this LJ. I will include birds, musical instruments, Diana Gabaldon's Outlander series (not directly fannish, I swear!) and some thoughts on the suicide of Robin Williams. Nothing grotesque in the last, but I had some insight, a lightbulb that finally went off.

I should probably make a cut here. Yeah...

Read more...Collapse )

Okay. That's it for now.
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Neil Finn
Jul. 8th, 2014 @ 11:27 am Nearly 11 months
Here's a rundown of almost a year. Just the highlight reel.

*I studied for the Japanese language proficiency test and took it in December. I passed.
*My dad died in December. I actually took the test during the last week of his life. Interesting how things go. While I miss him, I'm more happy to know he's not suffering.
*I wrote a NaNoWriMo novel, but didn't start it until the end of November. I thought I wasn't going to do it because I was studying Japanese, but the story wouldn't stay bottled up. So I finished the 50K in December, still following the normal 30 day time frame.
*I started looking for a house in February. I found one and closed on it in May. It's a 2 bedroom, one bath house on 1/3 of an acre on a street corner half a mile from my job. I walk to work now (except on appointment days like today), and I do my own yard work. Yeah, I'm starting to be much fitter.
*I haven't written or studied language intensely this year at all. It took a lot of effort to be house hunting.

Well... that's stuff. I still exist.
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Neil Finn
Aug. 22nd, 2013 @ 03:55 pm Overflowing writing ideas!
Not a bad thing here. I'm finishing up a short story I started in July that was my Camp NaNoWriMo entry. I completed my word count, but the completion of the story has sailed at least 14K words beyond that. Much of a surprise considering that I am hand writing it in a cheap 17 cent notebook.

So I am already looking toward November and the real NaNoWriMo, and I've thought that I would head back to my werewolf family story and write about the two older brothers as men in their young 20s (college, first marriages, etc). So I'm excited about that. I think of the first brother and how when his first wife dies that his future second wife will be there. They aren't aware of each other for about six years, but wife #2 is present when the first one dies. (She's a nurse, and no, it wasn't her fault.)

So all that is rolling along, and that's great. But today out of the blue like some Rube Goldberg Machine of thought, I get another completely different story idea to write. It would be set in a tropical Antarctica, obviously after a major climate change.

I'm full of ideas and this overflowing on something original is a fantastic feeling. Since I started my writing through fan fiction, I had initially been concerned that I couldn't do the world building needed to create my own stories. Then I thought I couldn't come up with plot ideas or finish a full novel length story. Now I know I can do all of that. Whether or not I'm good at it is up to someone else, but I know I can do it.
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