Writing about Writing

I’ve done quite a bit of reading about writing, and watching videos about writing, and I suppose now here I am writing about writing, as most of us writers are wont to do.  I’ve already gushed at you all about Skillshare. I also peruse a bunch of writing blogs, twitters, articles via scoop it, and facebook.

No wonder I feel like I’ve had enough of reading about writing.  It’s always the same type of article, too.  7 Ways to Boost Your Creativity!! and none of them really seem to work as I’m feeling as uncreative as always.

It doesn’t help that my current writing project is a crappy story with crappy writing that I kind of hate.  So why am I writing it?  I want to finish it.  That is all.  Finish it and then possibly shred it.

Ok, I won’t shred it because it only exists on computers, but you get what I’m saying.  Of course, all these articles and blog posts have thoughts about finishing vs. not as well.  Some say just finish it, quantity breeds quality.  Others say life is too short to be writing what you hate.  Well, it’s not like I have any other ideas in the cooker right now, so I might as well write what I’m writing.  The Abdication, or: The Girl who Would be Death.

When I finish it I shall do a very happy dance.

Skillshare

So a friend of mine, Allie from alliepets.com recently posted on Facebook about taking a course from Skillshare.com.  Intrigued, I went to explore skillshare myself, and it is awesome.

What is Skillshare you ask? Skillshare is an educational site where you can take courses on things like design, photography, writing and many more.  The courses are via video, and are relatively short, meaning it’s easy to learn something new in a short period of time.

So far I have taken the following courses:

  • WordPress Plugin – 10x the Number of Visitors with This Plugin
  • Skyrocket Your Creativity & Get Better Ideas: 7 Easy Ways
  • Writing Fiction: Become a fiction writer with three easy lessons
  • Clear the Clutter: Design a Daily Writing Goal
  • Finding Your Writing Voice: How to Express Your Unique Self in Your Work

Sensing a theme yet?  Now, Skillshare is mostly only useful if you sign up to be a premium member.  Usually I would tell people to avoid this, as premium memberships tend to be more than they’re worth, but right now Skillshare is promoting a three month membership for 99 cents.  Highly recommend it for the creatives out there.

And no, I don’t work for Skillshare, lol.

The most useful class I’ve taken was surprisingly the one on the wordpress plugin.  While I doubt it will garner me 10x the traffic like the teacher claims, the plugin gave me: an awesome email list builder, a click heat map which shows you where people are clicking on your website (it’s very neat!) and a traffic builder by helping to promote the content of other users.

For those of you wondering, the plugin is SumoMe.  I know it works for wordpress, I’m not sure of other sites, although their webpage says it works on all pages.  I highly recommend this plug in if you can get it.

The X-files made me gay

Ok, not really, but they certainly had a huge impact on my coming out process. And not just because Gillian Anderson is hot as hell.

You see, there was this girl I met in line on my very first day of University. We were both attending a frosh barbecue and there she was, sitting on the edge of a planter in front of me. I can see it clear as day, even though it was almost twenty (!!!) years ago. She had short brown hair, blue eyes and was wearing the same colour frosh T-shirt as me, with her name emblazoned across the front in black marker. Laura.

Laura and I quickly became best friends in the weeks that followed. Our shared love of all things geeky brought us together and we would spend days and nights just talking about everything and nothing. Our friend Amy said we talked in code. Like only the two of us could understand each other. And maybe it was true.

I spent a long, long, long time trying to determine where the line between friendship and romantic love was, once Laura and I were best friends. I kept telling myself that’s all it was. Friendship. And then I found myself thinking about kissing her and I was lost.

The thing about Laura was that she loved the X-files. Loved. So like any good best friend she made it her mission to get me into the show. How did she do this you might ask? Oddly enough she started with fanfiction. Mulder/Scully UST fanfiction, to be more precise, and there is one piece that will be forever burnt into my consciousness. “Exposition” by Daniel S. Pearce. The fact that this piece still exists on the internet 20 years after it was written is proof the gods love me. It talks about how they clearly love each other, but they are both “accomplished liars”. And that for Scully “There is no person between heaven and Hell more important to me then [sic] Mulder”.

All that fanfiction led to a strategic watching of about five episodes, all about the relationship between Mulder and Scully and long discussions of whether they were just friends or should get together. I was hard pressed not to find the parallels between the four of us.

Over thanksgiving weekend, Laura came out to me as gay. It took me until November 11th to tell her that I liked her, that I was gay too. And how did I do that? We were walking along the canal one day and the conversation went like this:

L: Do I know everything about you?
A: Not everything. There’s one thing you don’t know [that I had feelings for her]
L: What is it?
A: I can’t tell you.
L: Oh come on!
A: Let’s just say that I’m an accomplished liar

She knew exactly what I was saying when I said that. I was saying that I felt for her what Mulder and Scully felt for each other.

It took her three days to respond. And when she did? She said “There is no person between heaven and Hell more important to me then [sic] you.”

So while it may seem silly, the X-files gave me the framework and the language to come to terms with and express my feelings about being gay. It gave me a way to say “I love you” to another girl without having to actually say those words, because they were far too scary for me at the time.

The X-files gave me my first girlfriend, my first love, and for that I will forever be grateful.

And Mr. Daniel S. Pearce, wherever you are…thank you for giving me the words.

Dry

The wall is too high
The leak too small
For the water
To get out
In any way that
Amounts to much

Yet we keep breaking
Tack tack with our hammer
One brick down
When another
Pops up
In its place

The dam was built
In the night
Sneaked in like
A thief
Quietly quietly
Stone by stone
Brick by brick

We woke up one day
And the water
Was gone
Deserted
Maybe it was
A mirage
All along