Friday, April 26, 2013

7 Quick Takes Vol. 5

Hosted by Conversion Diary again at last!

1.       Reading the other ‘7 Quick Takes’ makes me realize that I’m something of an anomaly. Most of the blogs seem to be run by moms or at the very least women. Me, I’m a nerdy single guy who writes a lot about novels-in-progress and guns. Not that moms can’t write about guns; I’m very much in favor of maternal gun-ownership. A mama bear may be scary, but a mama bear backed up by a Glock is even better.  

2.       I seem to have unblocked my writer’s block; I’ve made more progress this week than I have over the past month or so. I ultimately decided to work on Chronicles of Hendricks for now, and just over the past week I’ve gone from zero to 11,472 words (as of this writing). The strategy I’m trying out for this one is to simply write whichever part I’m currently thinking of. You see, previously I would start from the beginning and plow through each chapter in turn. This time I’m keep it to a single word document and jumping all around the book as inspiration/interest strikes me. I’m still trying to work my way up from beginning to end, but I don’t hold myself to that, if you get me. This has not only proved much more profitable, but much more fun.

3.       It helps that Chronicles is pretty much exactly the type of book I want to write: it’s a manic adventure story set on a remote Caribbean island that features pretty near close to everything I like to have in stories: lots of monsters, evil villains, a beautiful and endangered heroine, an unassuming hero who triumphs over all odds, etc. It’s the kind of book where characters quote The Tempest, but also say things like “you just don’t understand science, do you?” and that includes both philosophical discussions about whether humanity is perfectible by its own merits and a fight between two giant snakes, one of which spits acid.

4.       If you haven’t read Steven Pressfield’s The War of Art I highly recommend it. It’s all about the battle with ‘Resistance,’ the curious reluctance we have to doing what we really feel called to do. I’m certainly very familiar with it. But he describes how, after your power through and do what you have to do in spite of resistance, it’s an incredibly freeing feeling. Well, this week I’ve experienced some of that and I feel better than I have in a long time.

5.       On the downside, as of this writing I’m not sure who I’m going to do for Famous Catholic Friday this week, or even if I might end up skipping it and saying that my ‘G.K. Chesterton Appreciation’ fills in for it (even though I'm planning on doing one on him in the future).

6.       My sister has expressed ambivalence or dislike for Chesterton on occasion, most recently in a long post and discussion. That makes me kind of sad, since I can’t share my love of Chesterton with her. But, on the other hand, that’s life. There are a lot of artists I don’t like whom other people whose opinions I respect adore (Picasso, Mark Twain, Ezra Pound, etc). It’s part of the wonderful tapestry of the Church and the world, and I need to get better at not letting it bother me.

7.       Inspired by an article on The Art of Manliness I’ve decided to construct myself a pull-up bar out of PCV piping. In retrospect, I should have read the comments section first, as most people expressed doubts that PCV was actually strong enough for the job and wouldn’t shatter into a thousand deadly shards. However, I believe I’ve come up with a number of solutions for my own model:
·         The cross-bar is only three feet long rather than the five feet for the ‘complete gym’ version.
·         I’ll reinforce the crossbar with wooden dowels to give it some extra strength.
·         I’ll wrap the whole thing in duct tape, because DUCT TAPE FIXES EVERYTHING! That way, even if it does shatter, it won’t send shards flying into my eyeballs.
·         I’m also considering ways to reinforce the support beams, possibly by simply filling them with something (I am open to suggestions, as long as we keep in mind that 1. I need to still be able to disassemble it for storage and 2. They’re two-inch-diameter pipes).

Look for a future article about how this all worked out, possibly with pictures!

1 comment:

  1. Ooh..Good job switching up your way of writing (#2)! I think that's a better way to work, especially on revisions and rewrites, and I'm really glad it's going well for you!

    The War of Art sounds fascinating! I kind of want to pick it up..

    and sorry about Chesterton, we can still talk about him..just not like 'yeah, and So Yeah, And I love that too..' - which is probably good for us both ;)