This is going to be an exercise in ‘can I just say what I want to say without turning on the prose setting of my mind?’
Well, let’s see…
For a while there, I was steadily working on my novel. About five years ago, I did this foolish thing one might call ‘starting a book’, except I forgot to really start it. At least, properly anyway.
I just started writing. Anything and everything I thought I might want to say. And it was only about 75% in (50,000 words, about two thirds of an average sized fiction book) that I realised there was absolutely no order to this madness. So what did I do? I steam-rolled on ahead, and just kept on going in no particular order.
My novel is non-linear. But not so much so that it’s meant to look more like a collection of essays… by different people.
So I took the over one hundred ‘pieces’ of my novel, and tried to make some sense of them. I tried doing it manually in the real world, with actual paper and stuff, because I thought it would be easier to move the pieces around if I could, you know, actually move the pieces around.
But after placing about twenty pieces in one order, it just felt impossible, and I quickly became overwhelmed with such a task as ordering the culmination of my entire life’s work.
I eventually found the right way – meaning, the right way after the fact, since the real right way would have been writing in order in the first place, or at least having some kind of plan or outline – and that was to create a key.
So like, memories, depression, prose, poetry, etc. And also certain characters, and when they should appear. If they’ve been introduced yet, and so on.
And I felt really productive, like there was now a plan to it all, something to be working on with some kind of focus when I woke up in the morning.
Every now and then I would stop to write something new, adding a new piece that needed to be placed somewhere. When I eventually ran out of pieces, I felt kind of lost, like I didn’t know what was supposed to come next, so I thought the only thing that’s left is to read through it from the beginning, either adding what was missing as I go, or if it was big, like whole chapters, note down that things need to be inserted when they need to be inserted.
I read through about two thirds of the manuscript, and of course, coming towards the end, where I know I will actually have to create an end, well… I just stopped. Silence in the air, sunny dust motes on a sweltering day after the sun hath zonked me, quiet time in the house, the terrifying sound of other people’s kids outside, torturing me with their bright eyes, and their wondrous futures. They don’t know the crippling fear of an end, of how to complete ones life mission. But I know. I know that fear.
I’ve always had a problem with finishing things. A book that I love, a tv show I’m trying to get through, a new project I thought I loved, my manuscript, the cleaning, the thing I said I would do for a friend. It’s all up there, hanging above my head, taunting me. Laughing at my inability to take hold of them all. Feeling sorry for me, as yet another thing that’s incomplete gets added to the set of strings that hold my life’s most dear, and feared project, stories, favourite things.
Of course, in true fashion, as I struggle with the ending of my book, with WRITING THE END OF MY BOOK, the thing I want to do most in the world, I decided to start a YouTube channel.
HURRAY. A round of applause for me please.
Yeah yeah, I know…
But I mean, I have this writing blog, and my other blog, I have instagram, and I have a podcast, so for me, it’s just another form of creating, or expressing myself. Another outlet for my passions, desires, and that ever nipping at the edges of my consciousness that I must. just. be. seen.
True to the artist in me, I hate being asked what ____ is about. But I will try to explain that like most of the things I create, it’s just about me.
What I’m reading…
Reading vlogs wherein I just film myself reading. Sometimes ASMR style.
Or just talking about my favourite books.
Book tags, and questions about books.
Books. Books. Books.
I did one of the tags where it was like fandoms colliding, combining makeup and said books! A beauty guru I am not, but I do love makeup, the things themselves, and also just applying makeup (it’s very soothing), so why not. I found it helped make me feel comfortable talking to the camera, because guess what, if you didn’t already know, that shit is a skill in and of itself.
I also made a video of just me trying on my favourite pastel fashion spring type items, while dancing around. Because I love pink dresses, and I love to have dance parties. They are a daily occurrence in my house. ❤
I have a video coming up where I talk about my favourite tv couples (or ships if you prefer), and will be doing some London vlogs soon, as well as some videos with my best friend.
My best friend who lives an ocean away, is visiting for FIVE WHOLE WEEKS soon. So I am fucking pumped!
I haven’t even been blogging really. I’ve felt really angry lately due to some medical neglect, and also angry that my body and mind is broken in a lot of ways. And it’s been hard to unpack, to work out which subset of that anger goes where. Is it at myself? Or is it at the doctors that have been largely failing me?
I want to write about it but I’m still in it, there are more appointments, so I need to ride this out first, see what’s what.
I’ve been pretty obsessed with instagram lately so if that’s your thing, that’s really the only place I reliably communicate with the world.
I enjoy the shit out of the stories feature. Both watching other people’s, and posting my own. I use it to share other peoples posts a lot, kind of like instagrams own reblogging, or retweeting feature. But I’ve been trying to also post videos of myself on there a little bit. Like I said above, talking to the camera is nerve-wracking but I’m trying to get better at it because I genuinely enjoy it. After all, talking about myself, or just talking in general so I can hear my own voice is this narcissists dream come true.
I’ve been pretty fucking consistently depressed since the beginning of the year (depression is a persistent, familiar, evergreen feature of what makes me, me… but it has been particularly nonstop). That coupled with the never ending appointments.
Appointments with my:
Appointments at the hospital, at three separate departments all for different things. It just goes on an on and on.
I’m tired, man.
I definitely feel that I’ve been putting a strain on my partner too. He is loving and supportive, and always there for me, but even I know there’s a limit, or if there isn’t, there should be one in some cases. The kind of constant care I need sometimes, just isn’t fair, you know? I don’t want my mental health to affect anyone else’s, for the degradation of my mind to injure someone else’s mind.
So I’m talking to my therapist about coping skills. I don’t like to be alone, to suffer alone. I need the contact to heal me. But I know I can’t always have that. So I want to build some things that will help me on days when it’s not so bad that I absolutely cannot survive without help, but bad enough that I’m just drifting, floating through the days, just waiting for the time to pass until I can numb myself with sleep.
Speaking of, I have a new therapist. It’s been a while. It was just so hard to find the will to find someone new, you know? It’s like dating. After going on lots of bad dates, spending time telling your best stories, sharing important information about yourself, only for it not to work out? It’s hard to find a good therapist, someone who is actually good at their job, but also be someone you click with, all the while finding the balance between: this is a service I’m providing but hey we’re also kind of friends. After all, if you’re doing it right, they’ll be one of the people who know the most about you, who knows how you work, and what makes you tick.
But I needed it.
I needed help.
I’ve been journaling, which is essentially homework. We’re trying to find patterns, and triggers. For my PTSD, my ED, and my depression, not to mention, but also completely fucking scream from the rooftops: MY ANXIETY! Nothing has emerged yet, it’s still early days, and I struggle with writing it all down when I’m at my lowest. There’s too much going in my head. In true writerly fashion though, I do usually feel better (not better as in well, okay, cured… it just helps) after writing it all down. And sometimes, I’m writing down something I’m feeling, and feeling the need to share with my partner, but then I realise, wait, this doesn’t necessarily need to be shared right now, it would only have a negative effect. And that’s not to say I’m holding something back, or hiding something from them, it’s more about, do I need to pile on right now? Is this just going to cause an argument because I’m depressed and angry at the world? So yeah, sometimes I feel better because I follow the urge, the digging niggling need to throw some useless shit into the air, and I give it to the page instead, and ah, it’s a relief. It’s gone. No need to say it anymore.
I’m having so much fun making videos. The whole process. Preparing for filming, whether that’s choosing a book, planning a topic to talk about, or choosing what outfit to wear for the video. Silly but also important things like moving around my trinkets so they appear differently in each video. I like tinkering.
The editing process is both tedious, and a gift. When I’m editing, it takes up every possible space in my mind, I can think of nothing else in those hours but where I should make the cut, and what transition to use. I edit for six, eight, ten hours at a time. And it’s glorious to empty my head for a while, push all the rest of it aside, be gone demons, there is no room for you here, not today! So you see, the videos are more for me, than anything else. It’s only a thrilling bonus if someone chooses to watch. And I do hope people watch, let’s be real. I dig the views. It’s so new though, there aren’t many.
Ah yes, the inevitable end that I find hard to reach, and find even more unachievable than anything else in the world.