beachin’

I love returning to the ocean. It is the birthplace of all the life that exists on this world – all of it can be traced to those first few sparks of life in the depths of our water.

I’m a water guy. As a kid, you couldn’t get me out of the pool. You couldn’t get me out of the lake. You couldn’t get me out of the ocean.

The draw is palpable when I’m near water, but especially that natural feel of a lake or ocean, the chill, the sand, the mud and muck, things flitting about you, the salt on your lips.

Bless us, mother Ocean. From your depths, we rise.

Target: 400 words
Written: 190 words, novella: The Mungk

Read: Unlimited Power, Tony Robbins
Comics: Cyber Force/Hunter Killer 5
Music: Jump Back, The Rolling Stones (you know, you forget, sometimes, just how many great songs these guys have and you have to wonder... is the devil real? Did they make that deal? Is that how Keith Richards is still alive?)

post scene one

I was really hoping, thirty-seven days into this new year, that the first draft of the first novel (well, novella) I wrote in the canon of me would be a real banger.

Instead, it’s a steaming pile of dog feces.

I suppose we must walk before we run, crawl before we walk, and lay around screaming incoherently before that.

Weirdly, we end that way as well, most of us. We come in screaming, and go out spent, withered husks.

Hump day positivity, folks.

Target: 300 words
Written: 193 words, novella: The Mungk

Read: Face It, Debbie Harry
Comics: Sex Criminals 13-16
Music: Jesus Of Suburbia, Green Day (like 3 separate singles)

old schooling it

Listen, I get it. This is a 2006 blog in a 2024 world.

People don’t want to hear about your whining, or your ideas on hope and achievement.

I’ve some interest in that stuff, but once you’ve read the basics of things intended to inspire you, and you’ve moved beyond it, because you realize it actually sets unrealistic, non-real world expectations (requiring riches and bitches, as I like to say), that for most of us, it makes you feel bad.

Unworthy.

So, it becomes about finding the softer voice, the one that speaks to you without imposing its own views of success. Success isn’t a requirement of happiness. Neither is money or love or great sex with girthy members or gravity-defying breasts, or whatever you’re into.

(Both? Simultaneously? On the same person?)

These are nice to haves.

Right now, I’m writing about the crushing weight of the world, or the way trauma knocks us off our axis and fucks up our magnetic fields, so we’re forever pushed away from the thing we want most.

And it sucks. That sucks.

(Not the writing part – the crushing weight/trauma part).

It sucks that people, like us, like me, like many of you, have to go through this. And sometimes, it doesn’t get better.

I’m not sure what hope I could offer. There will be some good times, but it might not go away. It doesn’t, for a lot of people. Some eighty-year olds still bitch about how their parents messed them up.

A lifetime has passed to get over it. Why are these things still dictating behaviour?

But they do. They still do.

They fuck you up, your mom and dad.

Not my mom and dad – I fucked myself up. I’ll take credit for that.

Target: 300 words
Written: 1143 words, novella: The Mungk

Read: Yours, Cruelly, Elvira (way better than you'd expect, given, but then, I've always been fond of Elvira - even as a child, she gave me tingles in parts that maybe shouldn't tingle at that age, but then, I was always girl crazy - see above note about gravity and defiance - her humour was equally sexy though - like a dad joke with boobs.  Anyway, it turns out, she's pretty cool, and she's lived a hell of a life.)
Comics: Fight Club 2 8-10, Fight Club 3 1
Music: You've Come A Long Way, Baby, Fatboy Slim, A Jackknife To A Swan, Mighty Mighty Bosstones

so begins canon

I’ve been poking at it for a while. Haikus and flash fiction are all good, and comic book scripts and thinly veiled political rants are something else, but proof of life, proof of concept, of talent, skill, hard work, dedication, adaptability, open-mindedness, and good old fashioned sex appeal lay in the pudding.

(Or Jello wrestling mud pit, if we’re talking that last thing).

The point is, there’s no me, as I want me to be, without books. Reading is only halfway to completion. It’s the act of creation (which is really just exploration and discovery, connection and understanding), that’s the thing that fills the cup.

(Or Jello mud wrestling pit).

The bottom line is, me as I am now? I’m not happy with that person. That person sucks. That person write split-sentence haikus and pretentious shit about hats.

(I love them both dearly).

This person that I want to be? He gets dark. He gets into it. He understands subtext and trauma and helplessness in the face of adversity.

He knows how to crush you – your soul anyway.

(He’d likely lose in the Jello pit).

I want to make you uncomfortable; to remember that happy endings are not the only endings, and neither are grand tragedies.

Sometimes, it’s the little tragedies that wreck us whole.

Target: 300 words
Written: 794 words, novella: The Mungk

Read: Getting Things Done, David Allen
Comics: Southern Bastards 9-12
Music: You Only Live Once, The Strokes (The Strokes with Eddie Vedder doing Marvin Gaye? Fuck me sideways, does it get better than that?)

improvement?

I may have improved that dreadful third draft of Get Back Again. I hope I did. It still looks like it needs a lot of work, but hey, gotta manuscript sometime, right?

Fuck it.

I’ll be the first to admit I have no idea what I’m doing, most of the time. I’m lost, alone and largely confused.

Unskilled.

I never learned to buckle down.

I never learned to commit.

I never learned follow through.

It’s enough to make a man want to weep, but fuck it. I’m not the weeping type, except when it comes to memories of the people and animals I’ve loved that are no longer with us. I weep for the fact that they won’t ever be anything other than a memory ever again (a truism for all), and for the fact that the memory of me might not be worth the recall.

I want to make a mark, a slash across the sky, a rift in space-time that cannot be ignored, that lights up the night sky with things of wonder and beauty that no one can deny.

But instead, I’m writing about angry ghosts who can’t accept that their outmoded style of governance is on the outs.

And it’s far past time for something better.

Target: 300 words
Written: 2135 words, short story: Get Back Again

Read: Getting Things Done, David Allen
Comics: Southern Bastards 1-4 (I wish I would create atmosphere like these guys - damn well done.  You can practically smell the barbecue.)
Music: You Don't Come Close, Ramones

just bad

I’m a bad writer. I’m re-reading the third draft of this story and it sucks. I somehow took a bad first draft, made it into a workable second draft and then fucked it all up and went too far, shitting the bed entirely in my third.

Even this story wants me to get back to where I was; and then find a way out again.

Getting lost in the light is better than never being found (so say the Hip).

After all, it’s the foundation, even if this story doesn’t necessarily reflect that. It’s better to do the thing you love and not have the world’s acknowledgement than not to do it at all.

Not quite the same thing, but close enough.

Thanks, Hip.

Target: 200 words
Written: 1168 words, short story: Get Back Again

Read: The Princess Diarist, Carrie Fisher
Comics: Fanboys Vs. Zombies 13-16
Music: Yield - Pearl Jam, Yo! Bum Rush The Show - Public Enemy, Yoshimi Battles The Pink Robots - The Flaming Lips, You Broke Me First (Single) - Tate McRae (it's been a musical kind of day)

regress

There’s always the chance of regression. One gets too lost in one’s regrets or some wrong that’s been done to us (more often than not either petty or legitimately wrong, but no longer truly a factor in our lives, save us making it one), and boom, suddenly, you’re that insecure, angry, neurotic, obnoxious loser all over again.

We work so hard to move on, only to be anchored in cement by the shame of our past.

No matter how we try to move forward as a society or individuals, there’s always someone who wants us back where we started, in to the familiar, the old, the no-longer-the-best-way, because they fear change or the thought of improvement.

Then, there’s the others of us, so desperate to get away from the old, to rocket ourselves into the future, that we forget sometimes – things may work the old way; I doubt a single person in this world feels more present or happier with our hectic, crazy making technology – there’s something to be said for being disconnected, lost to time on the edge of a lake with a bonfire and some friends. Present, instead of captured on a screen.

Wherever we are, we want to be somewhere else.

Target: 200 words
Written: 323 words, short story: Get Back Again

Read: Start With Why, Simon Sinek
Comics: The Legacy Of Luther Strode 5-6 (what a series.  "Do better."  I feel that in my gut.)
Music: Year Zero, Nine Inch Nails (the real deal now), Years May Come, Years May Go, Irish Rovers

romance #1

Everyone has a first. This is my first. Goofy, absurdist comedy with little point or depth, only there is point, there is depth, only no point, but interpretation of a point and Jesus, I’ve been listening to too much Night Vale.

All hail.

Target: 200 words
Written: 792 words, comic: Romance #1

Read: 5 Steps To Controlling High Blood Pressure, Mayo Clinic (not be confused with the Mustard Wellness Centre)
Comics: Mind The Gap 17 (damn it, McCann, give us the rest of the story! I'm hooked. I have questions! Questions that demand answers, damn it! Once more with feeling!)
Music: Question The Answers, Mighty Mighty Bosstones (that's fucking soulmusic right there - spaceless intended)

one man’s war

Is another person’s bowl of Corn Flakes he doesn’t even realize he’s eating.

I started writing Romance as a one-shot goof-off. Now, I realize it’s a one-shot goof-off as metaphor for how doing something in one person’s life can feel like fighting World War 3, while in another’s, it’s something they do by rote and forget they even did seconds later.

One man’s Everest is another man’s small puddle.

Probably why so many “nice” guys feel so entitled; the mental and emotional struggle, the days of build-up, the pining, the obsessing, the fantasies, the creation of a mythos around a particular girl that has no bearing in reality to who she is, what she’s done or what her motivations are… when it doesn’t work out, it’s devastating.

From the other side, the woman might be aware of the guy’s infatuation, she might not be. It might be an irritation to her or something that goes completely unnoticed because, you know, she has her own life and it’s not up to her to play the role of trophy for some dude. Unless she’s specifically using him for free shit or whatever, there’s no blame on the person for this (and I’ve known women like that – one in particular who knew damn well who had the hots for her and turned it to her advantage for all kinds of free shit).

Ultimately, it’s up to the dude to reconcile fantasy and reality; to control his mind so that he doesn’t put so much stock in something that likely isn’t attainable, or at the very least, won’t be what he thought it was. The onus isn’t on the woman. Even the user, taking advantage as she was – it was the boys that had the power, really.

They just had to decide she wasn’t such a big deal, that there were other opportunities, other women, ones more likely to be interested and to be compatible. You know, someone that actually wants to be with you and treats you well, and who you want to be with and treat well in return.

They exist.

They’re just not that one.

Target: 200 words
Written: 3756 words, comic: Romance #1

Read: 5 Steps To Controlling High Blood Pressure, Mayo Clinic
Comics: Mind The Gap 13-16
Music: Quake, Nine Inch Nails (why??)

disappointment

Life’s full of them.

See what I did there?

Target: 200 words
Written: 2190 words, comic: Romance #1

Read: Get It Done When You're Depressed, Julie Fast
Comics: Mind The Gap 9-12
Music: Quadrophenia (Soundtrack), The Who ("is it me, for a moment?")

for a moment…

for a moment…

for a moment…