Themes make everything better. Have you noticed that?
I despised hunting for themes in books to wrangle into some meaningless essay for English class, I can now appreciate what solid themes can add to a story.Themes can add impact and emotional resonance and turn a story into a more cohesive whole.
Superheroes and villains – or anyone, really – become so much more kick ass when they have their own theme music.
Life can have themes too! Right?
2014 became my year of being blonde. Unintentionally. I didn’t think I’d make it through a full year. Now I want to do it on purpose. I want 2015 to be my year of being crafty.
In the creative sense! Not the trickster sense.
Maybe I won’t stick to it, or maybe I’ll reach the end of next year wand realize it turned into some other theme, but this is my experiment.
Anyone else having a themed year?
I’m writing again. Not much – a little every day – but it counts. I like the story spinning out of it, so far, and I like that the only expectation I am holding myself to is that I finish it. Eventually.
The book haul from World Fantasy. It is a beautiful thing.
I’m reading again! It’s been so long and I’ve missed it so much. The World Fantasy Convention came with its usual amazing book bag, and I spent too much time in the dealer’s room adding to the stash. Most of them short stories. I want to write more short pieces, which means reading more, and the anthologies look amazing!
Hey, it sounded like a good excuse when I argued myself into spending money.
Adjusting to life without a show to rehearse or fifty million things to do in all the free time I don’t have . . . on one hand, the freedom is nice, but on the other, I don’t always know what to do with myself. And while I don’t miss the frantic pace and total lack of personal time, I do miss the focus and direction. Also, I miss acting and the collaborative creativity of putting a production on a stage.
So what’s new with you?
Con + show = waiting for the plague to hit.
Con-plague. If you’ve been to a con, you probably have an understanding of what I mean. High energy, no sleep, unhealthy/not enough/strange food, and so many bodies crowded and crammed together. Cons are a petri dish of ick.
(But I love them too much to care!)
Then, remember how my last post talked about canceling our final show due to snow? Well, as I hoped, that got rescheduled. To Sunday.
You know, the day I came home from con.
The show happened. It even happened well, though I was dead – about as close to zombie as a still-living person can get – until the time our stage manager called places.
The recording even worked! Now the show is done with me, and I am done with the show. And sick tends to follow the completion of a stressful thing (even if it’s mostly the good kind of stress).
Which leaves me waiting for the plague.
Normally, I love the first snowfall of the season.
But not when it comes on November 2nd and cancels the final performance of an incredibly awesome show. A show that didn’t get recorded last night because of camera issues.
If we had the recording, I don’t think I’d be so pissed off right now.
But there’s a chance, slim though it is, that the hall will let us keep the set up and do one more run next Sunday. I don’t want to get my hopes up, but I’m keeping my fingers crossed. I really want just one more run. And the video evidence that, you know, we did it and rocked it.
Of course, this means I would have to go straight from the plane to the performance space. (That’s the day I come home from World Fantasy.) But I would so definitely do that.
Now we just need the folks in charge of the space to say yes…
So. What have I missed?
The Turn of the Screw – this show has been fantastically intense and challenging. Terrifying, because I’ve never had a lead role, because I’ve been out of it for a decade, because the line load is ridiculous and this play – this character – goes to some dark, uncomfortable places.
The director is amazing and so much fun to work with, but this is a show he’s wanted to direct for years. So extra pressure there to do well.
Then last Friday, we opened. And it was awesome.
Something else I managed to accomplish in the non-stop rehearsals leading to a crazy performance weekend?
I finished the Damn Novel draft.
Now I just have to type the damned thing. This is when I start bitching and swearing. Not that I wasn’t already doing that, but at this stage, I have no patience for my own process. But composing on a screen just doesn’t work for me.
For the rest of this week, I plan to type like a madwoman, survive our second and final weekend of shows, and somehow pack for next week’s adventure to DC and World Fantasy 2014.
No idea what I’ll do after that, when life goes back to “normal.” Thankfully, I’m too busy to think about that.
So today is the release day for an awesome anthology, made more awesome by the fact that is has a story of mine.
Check out the Goodreads page with links to your favorite digital formats/retailers. (And I’ve heard a rumor there might be a print-on-demand option coming.)
All to ask the burning question: how would immortals face the end times?
I have been incredibly selfish lately, and it’s only going to get worse until the show’s over. I haven’t made the time to spend with family that I really ought to and I avoid committing to plans so I won’t feel too guilty when I flake at the last minute.
The Flighty Artist is about to make a comeback, too. Sorry.
A little selfishness is a healthy thing. I am a believer of the idea that emotions are contagious, and that whatever you put out in the world is what you get back. And if you’re constantly running around to make everyone else happy, leaving yourself for an afterthought, that doesn’t leave you with a whole lot of joy to spread.
At least, that’s been my experience.
I don’t have the time I used to, to spend with friends and family, even without getting involved in theater again. I miss it. And being so busy makes for crazy times. For sheer mental health, I need breaks – quiet time to myself. Which means that, with Turn of the Screw gearing up, my life involves the day job, theater, and writing. The end.
It feels incredibly selfish, but everything else – mainly family and friends, anything resembling a social life – will have to wait until November.
And guilt won’t stop me from enjoying the hell out of it. Lately, I’ve been handed some amazing opportunities that aren’t likely to come knocking twice. I’d regret not doing and following through on them a whole lot more.