Bloody Hell

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NOTILE TE BASTARDES CORBORUNDORUM

It didn’t even take one day.

It wasn’t even noon before the pound sterling fell faster than Han Solo off the starkiller base bridge (sorry).

A matter of hours before Fuckface Farage admitted he should never have promised £350 million a week to the NHS since he can’t actually fucken do it.

No time at all before the UK lost its place as the world’s 5th largest economy.

I hadn’t even had my morning cup of tea before Pig Boy Cameron resigned, leaving the potential for an even worse (and unelected) haunted cabbage patch doll to take his place.

At this point, what’s keeping me optimistic is the hope that everything continues on this slide into chaos at such a rate that the public demands a return to the EU and Farage and his ilk are banished to Pluto.

But it’s not just this clusterfuck that has me turning from an optimistic young person to a jaded, disappointed twentysomething. To be honest, looking at what my country is doing is becoming harder and harder in recent years. I see no compassion, I see spite, bigotry, smugness and small-mindedness.

Take, for example, the microcosm of this kind of attitude displayed at Euro2016. Seeing Irish fans, whom I am claiming as my people thanks to my lineage, has made me smile. Seeing English fans has made me despair. Violent, bigoted, and arrogant – they’ve made us look small and stupid. Just look at this clip of English fans taunting refugee children and throwing coins at them. This is happening in TWO THOUSAND AND SIXTEEN.

The situation with refugees and and the reaction to it in general has made me feel physically sick at many different points. A certain inflammatory columnist (who shall remain unnamed to bypass the mini orgasm she no doubt has every time some talks about her) calling them ‘cockroaches’ was like a nightmare. Watching footage of Nazi rallies and propaganda films about the Aryan race in history, I shook my head and wondered how so many human beings could become so cold, so hate filled towards their brothers and sisters. Seeing that, and facebook comments on far right pages calling for them to all be shot and rejoicing as innocent children drowned, I realised the modern country I live in has every potential to fall into that precipice. And it physically hurts. How anyone can see the drowned bodies of people desperate to flee war and persecution washed up on a beach and think “good! now I wont have to deal with them as neighbours!” is beyond me. How anyone can throw things at children starving in tents behind chain link fences is baffling. No, not baffling, heartbreaking. It breaks my heart. And I feel utterly helpless.

Utter helplessness in the face of terrible things is one of the ugliest and most harrowing feelings in the world. Whether it’s watching disease take your loved ones, or watching poison enter the collective consciousness of your country.

I now live in a country where hate groups invade Mosques and harass people at prayer, where they attack Muslim women wearing headscarves in the street, where they talk about the people who gave us advanced medicine and our numerical system as “scum”. It’s like I’ve gone to a desolate, cold planet 70 light years away, I’m looking through a telescope, and I can see a distorted but sickeningly recognisable version of the kind of hateful atmosphere that lead to the holocaust. We think that it’s impossible, that we could never let it happen again. We’re wrong.

It’s already happening. To Roma people in Eastern Europe. To indigenous people across the planet. To Syrians. We are the same species as people who did these things, who still do these things, we are perfectly capable.

Margaret Atwood once said that people would remark that the dystopian, misogynist society in ‘The Handmaid’s Tale’ could never happen. She would reply that of course it could.

It’s our duty to constantly fight this kind of hate. Hatred is a powerful force. To quote Hannibal “you are capable of righteous violence because you are compassionate.” We don’t need righteous violence, but righteous force. If people invade Mosques, we should form blockades to keep them out. If people throw things at refugees, we should stand in the line of fire and throw them back. We must treat this as a war, not an invasion.

But we haven’t found our force. We tried facts. This referendum should never have happened, but Cameron needed to cover his porcine ass so here we are. The Remain campaign had a simple message; this is a bad idea. Leave had smarmy, smug, puffed-up rhetoric about ‘taking our country back’ and ‘finding our place’, we just had hundreds of respected financial institutes telling us leaving would be A REALLY, REALLY BAD IDEA.

Apparently, meaningless but sexy sounding rhetoric wins. My flatmate walked past a car on election day emblazoned with the Ukip logo and blasting “land of hope and glory”. You can practically hear the stamping hooves of heroic crusaders on horseback, asserting their superiority over everyone else. It seems the majority of this bratty little island preferred to stick to that fantasy and cover their ears when those goddamn experts with their fancy book-learnin’ tried to tell them not to cut off their nose to spite their Polish neighbour.

We saw something uglier than ignorance too. MP Jo Cox was assassinated by a man who gave his name in court as ‘death to traitors, freedom for Britain’. A man mainstream newspapers described as a ‘timid gardener’ rather than a terrorist and a murderer, which he absolutely is, presumably because he spoke English and was white.

The Brexit campaign then flew a plane over her memorial urging people to vote leave.

So here we are. Our currency is in freefall, Brexit campaigners are backing out of every overblown ‘promise’ they made about NHS funding and restricting immigration. Young people overwhelmingly voted to stay, but we were smothered by older generations voting against our future. Our next PM will be unelected, Scotland will no doubt leave (and I will applaud them) and doors will be closed to us forever.

So well done, Britain, you small-minded, xenophobic, racist, arrogant, pissy little island. You’ve fucked everything up.

Someone gave you a gun and you shot yourself in the foot.

Myself, and the rest of my generation, have lost whatever flimsy patriotism we had, and the irony is it will be more difficult than ever for us to leave the country.

 

 

 

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The bright side of being sad

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me being sad

Will Graham expressing my coping methods.

“There’s no room for demons if you’re self-possessed” 

“If my life wasn’t funny it would just be true, and that’s unacceptable”

(Both the wisdom of Carrie Fisher)

If I was going to describe the year 2015 for me, instead of using actual words I would probably just scream and punch something for half an hour. I had a devastating breakdown in my mental health, I had to deal with the fallout of that.  My stepfather’s illness got steadily worse and I heard the news of his death in the train station at eight in the morning trying to get home to say goodbye to him. No one in the station stopped to comfort me. One woman picked up her bags and walked away.  I spent Christmas with a family in mourning and read his eulogy while most people were buying stuffing. Even in the calmer parts of last year I dealt with my Mum’s appendicitis, my family moving house without me, and other slaps to the face. My family now joke that we’re cursed. As Carrie Fisher once said “the situation was getting worse faster than I could lower my expectations”.

It’s no coincidence that this was also the year I took up amateur boxing.

So now it’s 2016 and nothing that terrible has happened yet,save for the death of my great uncle Joe, who was in his late eighties. OK so that was not ideal… But, like a character in a movie with a hastily written tragic backstory (or an X factor contestant) I have changed a little.

I’ve always had a pretty sunny outlook, despite outward appearances of being quite grouchy. At heart, I tend to assume things will get better, or at least assume they can’t get any worse. This isn’t the first time I’ve dealt with a lot of crap in my life, but still I’ve always kind of kept on truckin’. I tend to be calmer and happier than most when things are ticking along smoothly, possible down to denial, possibly down to just being glad bad things that happened in the past aren’t happening right now. Having knowledge that life can be terrible can make you pessimistic, or it can just make you extra grateful when things are less than terrible.

This attitude isn’t always a good thing.

Flashback to early last year. I was living in my crappy, cold, dark house, with the knowledge that my beloved stepfather was terminally ill. If I felt bad about all that, I managed to push it right on down and ignore it. I looked at the positive. I had freedom, I was a university student living with my friends, young, healthy and I had my own double bed for the first time ever. I was no longer a bullied teenager living in a godforsaken comatose backwater village enduring my parents tempestuous divorce. I could come and go as I please, my stepdad was ill but he was doing ok at the moment, and I would often get good news about how his tumours were shrinking. Maybe he would be ok after all. So I just kept smiling, went out for the odd drink with friends and basked in the glorious fact that I could come and go as I please.

I had these little OCD ticks, but whatever, they would get better.

Spoiler alert, they did not.

So before I knew it I couldn’t function on my own, and I spent most of the day exhausted and in tears. I believe this is partly down to my refusal to just be sad already.

If I had just said to myself “hey, your life is crap right now. That doesn’t mean It’s gonna be crap forever, although it may get crappier yet, but instead of being lil’ miss happy sunshine giggle fairy, just brood a little bit and acknowledge that you’re not happy” I may have spared myself a repeat prescription of prozac.

I’ve always joked that I would make a great goth (I have the colouring for it) but I’m just “too chipper”. Well maybe forget that.

So surprisingly enough, this year I’ve found myself feeling sad sometimes. I’ve recently been putting up with this super fun chronic fatigue thing my body is doing, and a year ago I maybe would have just ignored it and told myself sleeping to much is better than having insomnia. The urge to do that still comes up. “Oh I’m fine besides that, it’s just a little bit annoying, you know?”. I don’t want to worry other people, and I don’t want to worry myself, so part of my brain goes “leave it, hun”.

I have pledged to myself that I shall not leave it. It sucks that so tired my eyeballs hurt. It sucks I can hardly face a 9:15 lecture. It sucks that in third year, when I have work piling up, all I want to do is curl up in bed.

And about that, it’s not just tiredness, even when I don’t feel the need to nap I want to snuggle up in my bed and act like the world is on pause. And it’s only expected that I should feel like that. I’m grieving, goddamnit, I’m recovering from a serious mental health episode. I am now going through life knowing it’s potential for random, sustained cruelty. I have threads of real sadness in me that weren’t there before.

Acknowledging this brings a strange freedom. I find I’ve become bolder, more assertive, more motivated (when I’m not napping). All the inspirational facebook posts in the world had nothing on the motivational power of an awful year. I say things like “fuck it, we’re all gonna die anyway” and I mean it and I do the thing.

And when I feel sad? I let myself be sad. I listen to sad music, and I cuddle my stuffed rottweiler puppy Ronnie (who I definitely didn’t get as a Christmas present just this last year) and I just let it happen. I keep an eye on it for bigger problems, but I let it happen. I think about all the reasons I’m sad, I have many, and I just let myself be a moody bitch. I’m experiencing the effects of grief, the fatigue, the irritation, the infamous “seven stages” which are meant to follow each other in an orderly queue but instead hit you all at once and just swim around, not making a whole lot of sense.

Sometimes I’ll remember something arbitrary I did with my stepdad once. I’ll remember the time we had a carvery on my way back to Uni or when we went to a beer festival or when I found him holding his hand in pain by the fridge cos the chemotherapy made him extra sensitive to the cold. And sometimes I cry. And I just let it happen. Same with horrible memories of my illness. Memories of my stepdad will come from nowhere, when I’m cooking, when I’m trying to sleep, and It’s like a big knife in the chest. Grief likes to ambush you, and it can hurt physically. I’ve decided not to ignore that. That sadness will be there forever, and trying to forget it would, as I’ve learned, be very unhealthy.

Obviously sadness can take over your life, sometimes to the point of crisis. But It’s a natural emotion, and I’ve always believed emotions are a part of us, they are not separate, they aren’t switched on and off through sheer force of will, they are us. So now I’m practising what I preach, and I’m letting myself feel bad as well as good.

 

Fifty Shades of Absolutely No Way

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Screw it, I’m going to write a whole post on 50 Shades and why I hate this book so damn much.

Content warning: rape, sexual assault, bdsm, misogyny.

The movie is about to come out, starring actress who hasn’t had enough of a career to ruin as Ana Steele and Jamie Dornan, only slightly watering down his misogynistic serial killer role from “The Fall” as Christian Grey. Beyonce is doing the soundtrack! Sexy, right?

WRONG.

My issue with this book is not the sex. Not essentially, anyway. I have no beef with a sexy sex book being popular. Even a sexy sex book featuring chains and whips and all that Rhianna stuff. As long as my Mum doesn’t start reading it, I’m fine with it. I have an issue with the way sex is presented in this book. Western society already has a less than healthy attitude to sex and consent (rape someone, get two years in prison before a return to football!) as well as virginity and female sexuality. The way sex is presented in this book is so warped and damaging it amazes me it even got published. Seriously, Catcher in the Rye got banned and 50 Shades shot to the top of the bestseller without a problem?

Christian Grey is a sexy dominant CEO who has very particular sexual tastes which include having total control over his partner. Ana is a young innocent virginal sort who seems to know fuck all about anything including how to use a computer despite having just graduated from college what the hell…

Anyway I’m losing track. BDSM is a thing some people do, and as long as it’s between two consenting adults who know exactly what they’re doing its fine and groovy with me. But Christian Grey is more than just a “Dominant”, he’s a dick. Ok, let me be more eloquent and insightful (that’s totes why you’re on my blog right?). Christian Grey is patronising and controlling, not in a sexy way in a flat out abusive way. At the start of the book Ana gets drunk (for the first time! another thing she’s hopelessly and unrealistically naive about!) and Christian TRACKS HER PHONE and turns up to stop her from being assaulted by her friend and takes her back to his lair. House, I mean house. He blames her for nearly getting assaulted, as she was drunk. So far, so awful. Later, he gets pissy when she tells him she is a virgin later rather than sooner. As it happens it’s none of his damn business if she’s slept with the president (Kirsty MacColl reference!) or of she’s never even spoken to a guy before. Then comes the sex contract. Ugh. He offers to ‘negotiate’ with her, then ignores her genuine concerns and belittles her for not being down to get down on his terms.

It gets worse! He buys her a laptop, in the typical “you are now indebted to me” abuser tactic, and they email each other on it. She jokingly fake breaks up with him and guess what he does? He turns up to her house despite never having been given her address, and he rapes her. She explicitly says no, she tries to kick him off, she even tries to work out the easiest way to escape her room. He makes her feel like it’s her fault because he’s an abuser and then he leaves her and she starts crying. The book continues in this pattern. He intimidates her, belittles her and abuses her. This not a romance. This book is an exploration of domestic abuse.

All the red flags are there. I wouldn’t mind if the book picked apart the mentality of someone abused by a parter. It would actually be quite subversive and cool to start it off like a typical romance and slowly reveal to the heroine and the reader that it is in fact an abusive relationship. If Ana was slowly having to come to terms with the fact that Christian is a terrible person and she should in fact stay away from him (as he so angstily insisted in the start of the book), this would be a really important and groundbreaking piece of work. Instead it’s a romanticised story about straight up rape and abuse. It’s also massively popular. Swathes of people are obsessing over it, you can buy “keep calm and obey Mr Grey posters” and the world is just generally going to shit.

Those are my objections as a woman, a feminist and a human being with a functioning heart and brain. I have yet more objections as a writer and reader. Ernest Hemingway says that all you have to do to write is “Sit at a typewriter and bleed”. E.L James writes like she sat at a typewriter and drooled. Twilight was bland and occasionally cheesy, 50 shades is laugh out loud terrible. Here are some actual quotes:

“His voice is warm and husky like dark melted chocolate fudge caramel… or something.”

“My very small inner goddess sways in a gentle victorious samba.”

“I can tell from his accent that he’s British.”

“Why is anyone the way they are? That’s kind of hard to answer. Why do some people like cheese and other people hate it? Do you like cheese?”

“I thought it was chocolate hot fudge brownie sex that we had, with a cherry on top. But hey, what do I know?”

A bestseller everyone. It pains me as someone paying nine grand a year to be a better writer that such half baked rubbish is doing so well. Not even for myself and my own snobbish bitter-writer angst, but for every struggling author who’s ever agonised over the perfect metaphor or had an existential crisis and thought of themselves as the worst writer of all time. It’s painful to see a book with such bizzarely bad prose as 50 shades do so well. However I will try to look at the positives. If 50 shades can get a published trilogy and a movie deal, so can any crap I write. I may not be Margaret Atwood, but at least I will never ever be E.L James.

Why do you come hair? And why do you hang around?

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I just read a pretty spot on article about the ‘beauty’ obsessed nature of body positivity movements.

http://bitchmagazine.org/article/pretty-unnecessary-beauty-body-positivity

In summary the article basically says that ‘beautiful’ shouldn’t have to be a requirement of having value as a person. Body positivity shouldn’t be “everyone is beautiful” it should be “who cares if you’re beautiful? You’re still very important!”.

Firstly I’d like to acknowledge that I don’t have a great need for body positivity myself. I have a pretty decent amount of self confidence and aside from the usual adolescent insecurities I’ve never suffered too much. Sure, I don’t think I’m the most stunning creature ever. I’m alright. I’m definitely not the most photogenic (hence the lack of photo in this post), my nose is a bit bigger than I’d like and I could do without my broad shoulders. Given the choice I’d wake up tomorrow looking like Charlize Theron. However I’m young, white and slim enough that I am not too much opposed to narrow beauty ideals.

The one insecurity that gets on my nerves nearly every day is my hair. If you’re my facebook friend or my friend in any capacity you’re probably already bored sick of my hair-based angst or at least had a giggle at one of my self deprecating jokes.

I have Irish Hair. For those of you without Celtic genes and a weirdly spelled name, you probably don’t know what that is. I have Irish blood on both sides of the family, mostly from my Granny who emigrated from Roscommon. Mostly, I like being vaguely Irish. I wish I was more Irish. I have an interesting name, I got a slightly different perspective on the world growing up Catholic in a Church of England country (we’re more dramatic and interesting, and our churches are ostentatious and fabulous) and I can credit it for my distinctive colouring (pale skin, dark hair, blue eyes). The hair, however, I could do without.

Irish hair is never neat. It is dry and wild no matter how expensive your conditioner is. It is neither curly nor straight, it simply twists and turns of it’s own accord.  It is so fine and light it feels like it’s not there. It is extremely breakable particularly when stressed. In my case, it also happens to be thinner than a potato-free stew. It also gets greasy quickly, whilst still remaining dry and brittle. The slightest presence of wind or rain makes me look like a crazed fortune teller. You know when you tie your hair back and endearing little strands of it fall down around your face? Irish hair springs out in wild curls that stick out horizontaly. In short, everything that can possibly be wrong with hair is present in my hair. It almost never looks good and I also happen to be cursed with a total lack of ability to style hair. My immediate family suffer the same thing, but aside from them no one seems to have much understanding of what wild Irish Hair is like.

I remember at school having to wear a ponytail (my hair was down to my waist, scouse Mums don’t do bobs) and always despairing the little wiry curls that would escape the bobble and surround my face the second I got to school. So began my life long fight with my hair. In secondary school when I started to notice everything wrong with me I tried to take control. I cut my hair short. After a lifetime of freakishly long hair I was bored. I dyed it every possible colour to distract from the fact it was terrible and I couldn’t style it. I washed it every day and during my punkier phases I straightened it almost every day. Naturally my hair viscously bit back like a lion when I tried to tame it. It thinned out more than Donald Trump’s. So I layed off the dye and the heat application. Now it was just boring and brown and wilder than ever. Last year I panicked when I saw actual bald spots and thin, witchy patches. I started taking iron tablets and consciously upping my protein (being vegetarian and a student probably doesn’t help). I reduced the amount I washed it by half and, sure enough, it has got better. For a while, though, it was bad. I would cringe and feel close to tears of I caught sight of my pathetic amount of whispy hair in a mirror.

I would burn with envy when other girls would swish around their thick, healthy hair and style it constantly without the ugly results I had to put up with. I still bubble with anger when thick haired people complain about the cards they’ve been dealt. It weighs down on your head? It’s hard to style? It takes a long time to dry? Cry me a river. Why don’t you complain that you’re wallet is too heavy, or you have nowhere to store all the flowers Tom Hiddleston sends you? I may sound bitter and it’s because I am. Thick haired people seem genuinely surprised that I have zero sympathy for their “problems” or that I simply can’t, or rather refuse to, understand how “difficult” it can be to have stunning, healthy, thick hair. And no, you would not prefer mine. After washing it’s so flimsey and unimpressive a professional hairdresser probably wouldn’t notice it. A day after washing it’s so wiry it looks like the insides of a scarecrow. Catching sight of it in the shadow of a projector is the worst, I look like a Quentin Blake illustration.

Speaking of hairdressers, I feel like they are an alien species. They ask me if I want layers, a side fringe, feathering when all I want to say is “help me. Just look at this and do the best you can”. I remember getting it curled professionally for my sixth form prom and picking out an airbrushed model in a magazine sporting the hair I would sell semi vital organs for. “Ha! I’ll do the best I can!” said the stylist. If I was Joan Rivers I would probably say something like “Hairdressers call most people that come into their salons their ‘clients’, they call me their ‘patient’!” In my dreams I either have flowing, shiny mermaid locks, or the hair of Princess Merida, or even an adorable pixie bob. Even a cute cropped hairdo wouldn’t work, although it would get rid of a lot of my problems it would only exacerbate my less-than-delicate features and big face and most likely make me look like Dylan Moran or a less hot version of Helena Bonham Carter in Fight Club. Mostly I just get a shoulder length boring cut that is as uninspiring as a cup a soup. Any longer and I look like a witch, any shorter and my face looks weird. Of course such haircuts never last. Another fun thing my hair does is growing faster than bamboo.

So we’ve had the other stages of hair grief, when comes the acceptance? I’m working on that. No, I’m not working on the part of this blog post where I wrap it up and tell you I am in fact a goddess and my hair is perf, I am working on accepting my hair. Is there anything good about it? It does style easily. If I actually knew how to style it this would be a huge bonus, but recently I attempted a quiff which looked somewhat impressive and stayed in place with only a shot of hairspray. I like the colour. It’s dark brown and it suits me. Sometimes it falls nicely and can form  natural curls when left to dry on it’s own. It always feels soft, too soft, like “brown smoke” as my friend says, but I suppose that’s something. I have other decent features I suppose. I like my hands and my eyebrows, I’ve been told nice things about my eyes. My face is sometimes like “daaaayym!” to me and sometimes it’s “damm!”. I am beginning to finally accept my hair. I know it won’t change and when I try it turns into a battle in which my hair always wins. My hair is not a benevolent helpful force that enhances any beauty I might have, it is a political enemy I grudgingly make peace treaties with. So I just leave it as it is. I distract from it. I keep it the least interesting thing about me. I push it back from my face, where it stays, I work with what I have rather than trying to force something I don’t. I try to take this position with all my insecurities, including my big nose and broad shoulders and weird little hump thing I have at the top of my back. You can’t have it all, although some people seem genetically blessed. My hair isn’t good and it probably never will be, unless I find a hairdresser who is also an actual wizard. Don’t tell me my hair is pretty, it’s not and that is ok. Pretty hair isn’t everything. Compliment something else about me, laugh at one of my terrific puns. And for the sake of all that is holy, begorrah and bejaysis, do not complain about your thick hair in front of me.Ir

Nitty Gritty Pretty One – writing angst

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The running theme through my life has been organisation, structure and my lack of them. My handwriting is an illegible mess. The old idea of an infinite amount of monkeys with an infinite amount of typewriters? My freehand looks like an infinite amount of monkeys with an infinite amount of crayons. Caused problems between me and the kitchen when I was a waitress. My various bedrooms have always looked like a piece of art entitled “dire need of storage”. I hardly ever have my week organised and I never keep a diary.

One of the many reasons I have chosen writing as a career is that my remarkable lack of logic and order shouldn’t bee too much of a problem. My skills of making stuff up far exceed my ability to retain facts. New technology means people can actually decipher my writing as it comes in a handy menu of fonts and save for windings they are all readable. In front of a keyboard I can let loose my scattered brain and dress it up with bitchin similes and make a fortune. The fact I never developed a left side of my brain is a help rather than a hindrance.

I got some feedback at University this week on a piece I wrote during exam period last year. My prof, a bouncy enthusiastic type, praised my ideas and saw what I was “trying” to do but once again came out with the critique that has followed me around my whole life. I lack structure. I need to work on my sentences and their varying lengths, my paragraphs need to be paragraph shaped and my prose style needs streamlining. I understood entirely what he meant and nodded along. I could tell here stood a man who has read enough rambling stream of consciousness pieces from me to bewilder him forever. He told me read the guide books, read some essays from Orwell and other accomplished types, work out what you’re trying to say and edit.

Editing is my first problem. After I write I’m reluctant to go through it again, sure I’ll find some glaring flaw and cringe at the thought of anyone else reading it. Inevitably when I do read through my work I vary between “this is worse than fifty shades of grey” and “hey I’m pretty good!”. As they say writing is rewriting, I simply need to force myself through my work and adopt an objective eye and kill my darlings, as Hemingway said. This ruthlessness is not in my nature, after struggling to find the right word for ages deleting it later on can feel counter productive. The scenes in ‘Throw Momma from the Train’ where Billy Crystal’s writer tries to come up with the end to his opening  sentence “The night was…” are extremely relateable. The word, in the end, is ‘sultry’.

My best writing fuel is actually being passionately involved with what I’m writing. If I’m looking forward to what I’m about to put down it can come out fully baked in a single session and I still look at it with pride years later. If I’m staring blankly at the screen trying to find my ‘sultry’ I normally give up. However when you’re doing it as a degree you don’t have the option to give up on certain things. They have to be finished and before the deadline. What results is a disjointed waffling that I want to forget ever happened. Perhaps structure is not something I need to achieve but something I should free myself from. Script writing comes with its own structure which oddly allows for more freedom. I don’t have to worry about it, it’s been hollywood law for years. Poetry as well has a rhythm which is discernible to writer and reader.

The main struggle is getting the grand vision in my head down on paper. I can’t do the George R.R. Martin trick of intricate and interwoven plots which pay off spectacularly, at least not yet. I can lose steam quickly when I don’t know how to shape my ideas. The best way to work is backwards, a mildly exciting idea that grows out like ivy and becomes something much bigger than you originally designed. It’s a brilliant surprise and a great ego boost. Then comes the boring stuff. The nitty gritty, the editing and rewriting and making sure it makes sense to your readers. This, I’m told, I have to learn and now. I’m capable of it, It just needs to become natural.