Tuesday, September 29, 2009

A Knot, Unwound?

How does it work, for you guys, when you decide what to write about?

For me, it's like...okay, I think this is the best way to put this:

I think in pages, chapters a second. In terms of writing. Because writing is infinitely slower than thinking. The truth is, I think about damn near the exact same stuff every single day, plus whatever happened the day before. It's not like words moving swiftly through, because they're thoughts, you know, so it works this way:

"I need to leave by six o'clock so I don't miss Heroes" is an overlay of images and feelings that would take twelve blog entries to describe, and they rush in simultaneously in a paragraph of activity, and they're bright orange flames against a blue-ish gray parking lot that flicker while each image and emotion is crossed off and recognized as existing to create the ball of connotation that includes: work, punctuality, "six o'clock," missing things, television, Heroes, being pissed off when a show isn't as good as it should be, and everything that goes along with each of those.

And the next thought is: "I like her make-up." And that, unraveled, is the previous blog entry.

You guys think like that too, right? Or is it different?

I don't even know why I write about this stuff.

Whenever I do, it's like everyone takes a step back from the blog, like, "Okay, I thought she was a crazy bitch, but that bitch crazy."

So those rants I go on, when they happen, it's because one chapter lingers, and it lingers for two seconds instead of one, and it usually inspires the next thought. That extra second pushes it over, and I have to unwind the whole damn thing until everything is is neat little piles in front of me, so I can write it out and organize it and in the end figure out what it means, why it lingered, what am I going to do with it after I rip it apart?

And then suddenly you realize how fucked up you sound when you unravel one thought at a time, because you see all of the other ones that slink into the first, when you didn't even realize they were connected in the first place, and how the hell did they get there?

They always sound way more coherent when they've been untied and unwound, rather than ripped apart. Then I can use them again.

Oh, balls. Whatever.



Jacob said...

Ideas usually pop suddenly and partially, yet completely formed. They seem so complete and wonderful and then somehow slip away between my fingertips and the keyboard. What's left is never a good as that big idea in my head.

Schmee said...

and i don't think you're crazy...you just have some issues. my new theory is that you're too smart for your own good...

Schmee said...

although i do feel that writing is a form of therapy for you so you should definitely keep doing that no matter how bogus you think you're posts are...ok I'll stop now

Meagan said...

I kind of know what you're getting at, maybe. I feel like that about ideas. I think one of the wrongest (it SHOULD be a word) questions I've heard about writing is "where do you get your ideas?" That always makes me think, are you kidding? I get too many ideas all the time, they never stop, and the real problem is that I miss out on a ton of the really good ideas (assuming I have good ideas) because I get distracted by other ideas that might or might not be good, and then the first swarm of ideas ate gone forever. And then the next ones are too. I probably manage to capture only .001% of my ideas, and that's ok because it still ends up being quite a lot of ideas actually. I think everyone is really like this, but most people don't even notice the ideas slipping by most of the time. Maybe not though.

I like it when you get crazy Rassles, it encourages me to let the crazy out too.

Sid said...

How does writing work for me??? Actually I'm thinking of giving up the whole writing thing. My heart simply isn't in it. I used to be all excited to share a tale with someone, to weave words together into a delicate little web BUT NOW??? Now I just don't give a fuck. Maybe I need a break?

Del-V said...

I haven't seen Heroes at all this season. I'll just stick with reading the funny books.

sas said...

i think the trick is to not think, just write. otherwise i end up down the rabbit hole of crazy too.

sometimes its like pulling teeth, but i've learnt to stop at those moments. it shouldn't be that hard.

when the words come easy, sometimes just a phrase or an idea takes shape and then I'm off. and its the closest thing i will ever come to flying.

Rassles said...

Jacob: I know. I feel like in my head it's all raw and perfect and untouched.

Schmee: Therapy, correct. Bottom line? If people don't like what I write about, then they will stop reading. Weeds out the real ones.

Meagan: That's it exactly. There's just so much getting jammed in there, and I can't spread it out fast enough to find what's worth focusing on. And I agree with you, I think everyone is like that, and they just never think about it. Or perhaps they do, and they don't voice it. I don't know. That's why I'm asking. I guess this makes us mental scientists.

Sid: Don't give it up. Take a break. Stop trying to be a writer and just start be a writer.

Del-V: They are making the exact mistakes that I said they would fucking make at the end of the last season, and it pisses me off. I called it. I predicted half of the fucking plot line in fucking April, but those writers are stuck in their informational rut. It's so lame. All of the characters are jaded. YOU CAN'T HAVE ALL JADED CHARACTERS BECAUSE SOMEONE HAS TO REPRESENT HOPE - why don't they understand this? I can't give up on it, though. I don't give up on friends who go through annoying phases, either.

Sas: Agreed. But it's very, very, very difficult to let it just flow and put all these other thoughts on hold, even just for half an hour.

Le Meems said...

no no no.
it's spot on.
I've been thinking, thinking, thinking so much there weren't even any colors associated with it.

Until last night when I heard that two friends I really liked. alot. Turned out to be two faced bitches.

And then it was white light. Mixed with fierce wind.

And that was one thought, that I thought, for quite some time. Until I went to sleep.

ANd I dislike going to sleep upset like that. WHich made things turn black. And I refuse to let mean people take me down, so the thoughts were windy and textured like corduroy.

And here I am drinking coffee. A static, mellow brown.

p.s. ironically my term today is "hyphee" how appropes.

The Ambiguous Blob said...

On this blog, I write for only one audience- me. It's a place where I can document fleeting thoughts, feelings, reactions, and keep stories safe in case I forget them later. It's pretty cool that people stop by and read all my ramblings and quip about their thoughts on the subject. Kind of like my internal thoughts have their own social network. Rad.

So I don't put much thought or planning into my posts which shows.

renalfailure said...

The simple version: find something interesting and take it for a walk in your mind. Except in my mind I don't take the walk alone.

And only women who don't want to touch Tag Larkin are crazy bitches.

JMH said...

Hi I'm Jon. The first comment is always like popping out from behind a tree or out of a dark corner, which, since it's getting dark earlier, is a good way to get a faceful of Mace.

Google Reader recommended that I check this out, and I think it's damn near the first time it's been right.

I don't think in knots at all. I'm a repeater. I'm a repeater. I think in strings. I think in strings and threads. I have to build the knot.

Ellie said...

I think you describe it brilliantly.

I don't think I worry so much about whether people think I'm crazy though.

Crazy can be cool.

Don't worry so much!

Erin said...

I think that way, too!

But I do try to cut the string as early as possible when I'm pulling it out to be written. It's a habit from work writing, where I have length guidelines.

Mia Watts said...

You totally have ADD and you forgot the crickets fiddling as high notes to a bass-laden drive of car stereo speakers. The single light in the middle of the lot distracts you almost as much as the freakin' orange flames and for fuck's sake, why is the parkinglot exit bar suspended half-way down when you're trying to go! There's cool stuff out there on the street and you can't HEAR them with all the chaos going on and they only partially care that you're stranded for another few seconds while the fingers catch up to the brain.

Which, in retrospect, looks a little half-insane typed out up there. Damnable mixed metaphores confusing creativity and real life shit. Fuck it. I need more caffeine and quit looking at me like that. It's the poison ivy talking.

Rassles said...

Meems: Dude, I put a color with everything. People. People smell like certain colors. And I can't imagine anyone being mean to you. Why would they do that? I will beat them up for you with my words, because my fists are far away.

Tabbie: I plan them to an extent, but not really. No, not at all, in fact. Whatever I start writing always turns out completely different than the phrase that originally popped into my head.

RF: Come on, man, there is no simple version of a knot that tied itself. And we all know about my soft spot for Tag, so I win that battle.

Jon: Well, thank you for that. I wonder if it would be easier to think in strings compared to knots? This is a very complicated issue. More complicated than I realized. People think in strings? That is excellent and completely unfathomable.

Ellie: You know that recent blog entry that you wrote, where you talk about being misunderstood, and jumping in defense of it? That's what this entry is. A jumping defense of the previous entry, which I fear was taken much more seriously than it should be. It was just one thought I snagged on. Just one.

Erin: No, if I cut the string I drop the knot.

Mia: It's funny, because the parking lot totally wasn't a metaphor. Because when someone says "Heroes," I think of blue-ish gray parking lots and orange flames. I just do. Probably because the show has eclipse imagery, and the fact that shit on always goes down in parking lots. Apparently I'm deep.

Ellie said...

hhhaaahahaa. I see. :)

Thanatos said...

My chain of thoughts turn around and flip out in less than 3 seconds so I lose the idea before I can pull blogger and start ... oooh, booger on the desk.

Gypsy said...

These days I'm not finding things to write about, so I'm not sure how it happens. I wish someone would just tell me.

Rassles said...

Ellie: You get it.

Thanny: I completely under-ooooh! Sailboat!

Gypsy: You should write about your experiences as a thieving gypsy.

Blues said...

If I knew how it worked for me I would probably be writing more often. I can't figure out how I start the process of writing. If I knew I'd look for the starting point, but right now I'm lost.

Jessica said...

Crazy! I found your blog via The Why Diary, which I found accidentally via a Google search for something about dog training.

Holy s. Hope you're doing well. Hope Muffy did read your post about hating people who talk about pirates all the time. Because she does.