1. Another writing comment

    With my current novel pretty much done, at least for now, I’ve taken the time to really let myself explore a new universe I’ve been creating for the past two years. It started off as a Sanctuary fanfiction and has morphed into a series about a vampire-like race and how they end up ruling “abnormals” (or, in my story, advanced humans known as The Families). 

    I’ve been having a lot of fun with it, letting ideas and thoughts and people emerge. Though it’s a lot of information - the first chapter starts in 1880 and the series will cover several centuries, considering these “vampires” are immortal. I haven’t even figured out the end, because I know it ends with their monarchy / reign collapsing but I’m having a hard time WANTING to do that. :( Fail. 

    Sometimes I have a hard time deciding how much I like living in my head. For the most part, it’s pretty awesome. There’s always a story or character or whatever going on, so I stay pretty entertained. But sometimes, like when I’m working on something as big as this, there’s so much information that my brain just kind of gets all jumbled up with it all. 

    However, I must say that in the past week I’ve been unbelievably productive with this. I keep getting caught up in a lot of information and ideas and feeling overwhelmed, then I take some time off, and suddenly things fall into place and I start pushing ahead again. 

    I already know this series is going to take a lot of time and patience, but I’m really in love with the idea and the universe I’ve come up with so far. I think, if I can actually get into a writing schedule, I’ll be able to complete it someday. Not to mention, I think it has a lot of potential as a series and it might be worth putting a lot of time and energy into it. 

  2. 21:04

    Notes: 2

    Tags: writingnovel

    Guess who “finished” his novel!?

    Yep! It’s officially fully written. Every chapter has been edited and commented on by my amazing friend (who’s an English major, grammar Nazi, and all around literary nerd). Thus I considered this to be a second draft. 

    I went out tonight and had two copies printed out. One copy is being mailed to the same friend, who will now read it all in one go, rather than over a year period, with the changes. The second copy is going to a fellow writer, English major, and sci-fi nerd who’s reading it for the first time. I’m hoping that I’ll get some great insight from Fallon who’s reading it a second time, knowing the changes that have been made and knowing the direction the story is going in. I also hope to get some insight from Glenys who’s reading it fresh, hopefully she’ll be able to point out any confusing areas and also give a second over-all reaction which I’ve already gotten from Fallon. 

    I’m really excited about the whole thing! I can’t wait to see what they think about it and to read their comments and even more so I’m excited to have a final draft completed. Though, of course, I have no idea what to do with it once that happens, but thankfully that’s what I have some Professors at BU who I can turn to as well as this class I’m taking next semester as it’s semester long project is to attempt to (and perhaps succeed at) publish a piece you’ve been working on. 

    On a related note, I need to learn how to write concise summaries of my stories because people keep asking what it’s about and the best I can give, without an hour conversation, is to say “it’s about two time travellers”. 

  3. 30 Day Challenge - 29) The Year of Your Life You Loved the Most and Why?

    I think, without a doubt, it has been this academic school year. To start with, I came to school with such a better outlook on life. I tried to be more optimistic, I pushed myself harder, made friends with a really great group of people! I’ve never felt more liked or accepted than I have this year. They’re all really fantastic. Most of them even know I’m trans and it’s a complete non-issue. In fact, they enjoy learning about it and have been wonderful as I start my transition, by pointing things out, listening to me talk about it, or just random stuff like that.

    This year, I’ve gotten out more, I’ve done some random things around Boston, I have taken random walks with friends, chilled out about work, and spend a lot more time with people rather than alone in my room / somewhere else.

    There’s also been a phenomenal amount of geeking out!! I love Fallon! And Brigid, though she’s not as good at geeking. We’re working on it. ;)

    Academically, I finally think I have found my footing. I’ve had the chance to be involved in the most amazing Creative Writing class that really helped me embrace my writing. I discorvered Jonathon Young and then it was over - I was becoming a writer. I’m definitely just trying to open up and accept that some of the things that scare me, scare me because I’m passionate about them and that’s exactly why you just have to look straight into life and jump.

    This year has also been the first year in a very long time that I’ve been so comfortable with myself. I’m learning to accept myself and learning to slowly see myself from other people’s points of view and discovering that, while I don’t think I’m attractive, other people think so. I’m 2 months on T and couldn’t be happier and just a few weeks away from getting my name change fully legal. Plus I’ve had eight months in a place where I’m (almost) fully accepted as a male and as John and haven’t had any problems. It’s been fantastic, it really has been.

    I just hope that this summer and next year prove to be even better.

    30 Day Challenge

  4. AAAAHHH!!!

    My brain is frying just LOOKING for grad schools - not looking forward to applying AT ALL.

    Not to mention the absolute terror that is settling in as I’m realizing how much writing (and good writing) needs to happen this summer in order to apply.

    Also debating on the GRE. The vast majority of the programs I like don’t require it but like 2 do. ::sighs:: I don’t want to take a test. :(

  5. Future Career, Coming Out, and Jonathon Young

    Between having some time to kill and geeking out about seeing Jonathon Young tomorrow, I thought I’d talk a little about why Mr. Young is so important to me.

    I’ve been writing for about ten years now. I started with fanficiton when I was 12 and just haven’t stopped. Honestly, I think my brain is pretty much wired for this sort of thing. I generally take a pen and paper with me when I’m going places I think I’ll need something to do and have never had a problem staring off into space and creating elaborate worlds. Hell, I was the kid who spent days in MGM of Disney World sitting on a bench and writing. Seriously, I would just write in Disney World.

    When I got to high school, I got a lot of comments from people about how I should become a writer, because that’s what I did, all of the time. Honestly, though, it was something I never seriously considered. I made up a lot of reasons - it doesn’t pay well, what if I never get published, what kind of degree do you get, what would you do with that degree, can you even “learn” to write, it’s not a stable career, what if I become jaded towards writing, etc - but in reality, I think I was just scared. Hell, I’m still scared.

    I got into my head that I should become a doctor. I’m smart, I love science, I’m good with people - sure, doctor. And the idea itself was met with such great reception that it was very hard to ever admit that I was changing my mind. So, despite the fact that I was slightly uneasy about going into pre-med, I did it anyway. I literally only had pre-med friends and focused a ton on science, but my heart was never in it. My pre-med friends, they’re all going to make great doctors some day, they really are, but I knew that it wasn’t for me because I was nothing like them. I didn’t have the drive or the interest. But it took until I came out as trans to really realize that.

    At the very end of my fall semester sophomore year (about 6 months after I came out), I was doing a lot of thinking. Finally I could see a future for myself, but being a doctor and medical school was just not in it at all. It took a long time, but I was able to drop that. Then I spent almost a year really uncertain of where I was going. I mean, I said that I was just going to finish off my pysch degree and then grad school and whatever, but my heart wasn’t in that either. I really was just clueless.

    Then one day I was re-watching the Sanctuary episode of ‘Animus’ instead of doing homework and I had an epiphany moment: Jonathon Young is fucking gorgeous. THe obsession began there and spread into learning more about his life. Cue finding out that he not only acts, but also writes plays.

    I mean, I was in a creative writing class and loving it. It was really letting me rediscover writing, but there was something about finding out that Jonathon Young was a very successful and wonderful writer/actor that made me really think “I could do this”. He inspired me to take another writing class and to take a Contemporary Drama class and this class has really changed my views on things and ways of thinking. I’m really getting into theatre and also have been working so much harder on my novel, mostly due to Jonathon Young’s play “The Flannigan Affair”.

    I’m now really trying to embrace the idea of becoming a writer and looking into grad school. I’m still playing around with which style to get into, playwriting or fiction, but I’ll definitely be taking classes in both regardless.

    But yeah, part of the reason I wanted to share this is because I have every intention of trying to catch Jonathon Young at the stage door and get his autograph. Which means that I’ll get to meet the man who has inspired me to stop being so afraid and really do what I want to do. Part of me really wants to say something along those lines to him, or even just ask him a question about being a writer. But I’m also completely terrified to (hello social anxiety mixed with freaking out because I’m meeting my idol anxiety).

    We’ll see. Either way, I’m super excited about this trip. Plus I’ll be checking out two potential grad schools while I’m there!

  6. Idea for a play

    I’ve got a lot of thoughts brewing around in my head right now for the next play I’d like to write. Fingers crossed, I’ll get into a playwriting class in the theatre department so I’ll have a more interactive / involved experience with writing plays and I’m guessing that we’ll have a final project of one long-ish play due at the end of the semester. So I’m trying to come up with some ideas of what I’d like to do so I can really give it a solid go once I get to it.

    Right now my idea is swirling around presenting the history of trans people, in some capacity. I know the basics, but I’m hoping to have time this summer to do some research and get a better idea of what the “trans movement” has been like.

    Formatting too is getting fun. I’m in a contemporary drama class, so we’ve been reading a lot of really interesting things. A couple of plays have been set in two + time periods and have melded the time periods together as the story went on, which could be very appropriate here. Another play we read involved documentary-styled writing, which could work. We’ve also read plays that are set in series, some of which are like “generation plays”. For example, one we read was several short plays, each one following the next generation (or set about twenty years later). By doing so, we go to see almost 200 years of these two families and the conflict between them; it was really interesting! So that is another possibility is to write several short bits that thematically go together and show the progression of time / view points / etc. I guess the formatting will ultimately come down to what makes the most sense for the story I want to tell.

  7. My playwriting teacher is actually kind of starting to annoy me.

    We write sections / whole acts of our play and bring them to class to be acted out by our classmates. During which we can get a feel for how it looks / sounds / flows / etc. Our classmates also watch and get a feel for it. Afterwards, everyone shares their ideas on what they liked and what can be improved upon. You also get to ask questions or for help.

    Recently, though, our teacher has taken to interrupting in the middle of a reading to make comments / suggestions. It gets annoying because 1) it jars the action so you have to get back into the play / is rude to the “actors” and 2) he made two comments during my play about what he wanted to see that LITERALLY showed up in the next couple of lines. (Did that to the other play too). Also he apparently wasn’t paying attention because he was all like “now you can go back and work some subtext into the lines” when most of the class was like “um… I totally got the subtext”. Plus he didn’t wait until the end of the damn read through to comment otherwise it might have made more sense / I was trying to follow his advice about having fewer stage directions and letting the actors get a feel for what they wanted to do with it. Obbviously, being a run through with amateur actors, they were just kind of making it up as they went along.

    Classmates had good suggestions, though, so there’s that.

  8. I have no idea what I’m taking next semester

    Mostly I want to take a bunch of writing classes, but those are proving the hardest to get into!

    The fiction class requires a writing sample, so I won’t know if I’m even in it until the week before class or so (so that sucks!). And there’s actually a regular fiction class and a graduate level one. Considering submitting work to both and seeing what happens!

    Then I want to take a screenwriting one, but I have to wait two weeks after registration and hope that a seat is opened. ::fingers crossed:: I might even be able to speak with the teacher and get in anyway - maybe I’ll just audit it or something.

    Then I just found out about this playwriting class but it’s a part of the College of Fine Arts, so I can’t just get into it. Plus it requires that you’ve taken one of four different drama classes, which I haven’t, but they’re also not offered so I can’t take them and get ready for the following semester! So I sent her an email as well and explained my writing experience, so hopefully she’ll let me in? Don’t know…

    Then I NEED to take a psych class, but I don’t know what to take! I could take Intro to Cog Psych but I’ve just realized that I’ve done a lot with it already so that class my bore me. So I could take a higher level course in Cog Psych, but that class might be a lot of work… So trying to decide on that.

    Then I need to register for another class or two, in case I don’t get into any of the writing classes. So that’s up in the air as well. There are 2 english classes that I like, but one has a time conflict with one of the writing classes. So I think I’ll enroll in it and drop it if I get into the writing class. The other one has only 5 seats? Weird… and scary. There’s also a drama class that sounds great and is with the Professor I have currently but I’m kind of worried that it’s a shit ton of work.

    Not that I won’t do work. See, here’s my issue this semester - I think that my schedule is so weird that I’m not in a good schedule / don’t have a routine, so it makes me never want to work. Which then means that the little work I do have for 3 of my classes takes precidence (after I’ve put it off forever…) and I never have time to write. It’s my own fault but it’s getting really annoying.

    So next semester I either want to make sure that I never have any “academic” work so I can put a lot of focus in my classes, or want to make sure that I have a really solid schedule so that I can get into a good routine and make sure that that leaves time for writing. It’s also why I’m considering taking 5 classes because then I’ll be busier and doing things and not just sleeping in every morning and what not. 

    So yeah, I have no idea what I’m doing… hopefully I just get into all of my cool writing classes and that will be the end of that!

  9. Cathartic book idea??

    So I’m currently working on a novel that’s about time travellers and cool sci-fi stuff, but I’ve recently gotten struck by an idea for a second book that’s largely based off what’s happening in my life right now.

    In the past year or so, I’ve been forced to come to terms with a lot of things about my life. I’m accepting me, I’ve just about overcome a long battle with depression and anxiety, I’m re-evaluating my life/career goals, and I’m reassessing where I stand and what I want from my family. I’ve experienced a lot of emotional hurdles, I’m realizing exactly how much anger I’ve been carrying around with me, and I’m feeling the pain for the first time really of many regrets. But I’m also looking forward to the future for the first time ever.

    A writer once told my class to look inside of yourself for wounds that never healed or that you don’t want to look at, poke at them, rip them opened, and then write about that experience. Not necessarily verbatim or anything, but let that emotion or image or something inspire you.

    My idea for this book is to write a series of short stories that, in a way, tells my experiences of discovering myself, not in a memoir type way, but in the emotions/images that the stories create.

    I feel like some of the stuff I’d cover would be dysphoria, my mental break-down over college major/grad school/profession, my anger towards my family, certain regrets (like the military thing, two memories that could have been huge turning points in my life but failed, etc).

    I feel like this could be an amazingly cathartic experience for me, though I have no idea if anyone would ever want to read it, or if it would even get published. Though I suppose the second two things are no where near as important as anything else. So who knows?