Re: “Frankly My Dear...” The rough draft Gut Spillage I’m not deleting this time because I finally posted it in the right challenge
AKA: dissecting the layers of a way too personal interpretation of Gone With The Wind.
Gone With The Wind is one of my all time favorite movies.
My husband introduced me to it.
I'd somehow gone 16 years of existence without the sheer pleasure of that film, and for remedying that oversight of God Almighty's I'll always love the bastard.
The thing is, I always knew that I was in madly love with Rhett Butler, from the very first watch.
I am totally his Eugenie; his baby girl.
But the other thing is, his baby girl dies.
It's not Rhett's fault she has to die.
He was doing the best for her that he knew how; spoiling her rotten with far too much love.
Dead, that child.
That living breathing sweet child of his what loved in the purest way anything ever has. Plum dead from too much love. From being forced to die or grow up. It's nobody's fault.
It's nobody's fault.
Okay then I think, through my far too grownup tears, through my hormone drenched, life loving, tock clicking since I was born tears... maybe I can't love him anymore as a daughter, maybe I need a Rhett Buttler of my own.
I earnestly thought that my husband was Rhett. My very own Rhett. How I loved him. How I loved him so much I'd jump off the edge of a world I loved just to be kept in his cage.
But he thought I was Scarlett. That bitch Scarlett. That crazy bint who needed him but wasn't capable of love. That's not me.
He thought all women of a fuckable age were her, and nothing would convince him contrary to his contrariwise nature.
It was a painful revelation; a revelation of more than a decade condensed into the past week; realizing the river ran the other way around...
I was Rhett. He was Scarlett.
Yes what a needy selfish bitch of a man on the inside he was.
(So what I'm Rhett. Why can't I embody the thing I love?)
But... the thing which separates me from being Rhett (apart from other more pleasantly obvious biological distinctions) is that I could never say the line he's born to say, the thing that soul-dead bitch deserves to hear even more than he needs to be kissed, (and he needs to be kissed so badly, often, and by someone who knows how)
That line, that brilliant line that only a true man can say:
"Frankly my dear, I don't give a damn."
Yep that's it. right there. the separation. The thing which makes me terminally female and a true man-lover. I could never not give a damn. I could try, I could try, how I want.... but I couldn't. It's not in me to not give a damn. I give so much damn it just comes out at random intervals sometimes: "damn, goddamn. Damn and fucking damn again. I always knew I never knew."
Not unless my inner child died all over again could I ever say that testosterone-drenched wildly-masculine line.
I know now what Rhett didn't; I know now not to spoil the children who love you. Not to teach them to live in a dream, and instead teach them to dream in a life.
So then I realized the truth of it, the character I embody more than any other in that film, the one I can be, and be successfully; I'm Mammy.
I care so much; I give so much damn, that I'd stay a voluntary slave after slavery is abolished.
And it's not quite because I don't know any other way. I'm smart, I can see the other ways clear as bell. It's just that I've realized that it's not in the cards for me to be loved as a woman.
But I can be loved as the rampantly maternal giver that I am. I can be seen there. And that's one heck of a swell consolation.
I don't need my Rhett-shaped silhouette to love me anymore.
All I really really need is that despicably beautiful red petticoat: Recognition from the real Rhetts of the world. I'll be forever grateful for those loving glances from the worlds I can't have.
So, here's that poem I posted before and then deleted because it didn't come close to saying everything I needed to say:
Alternative Endings: Take 3: Confessions of a Born-Again Cuddleslut:
Clark's raising the Gable-stop,
Slipping hands like sable
In between each table-top...
Catching breath when able.
I could hug most anything;
Meld in through the pores;
Licking souls until they sing
When knotted in their cores...
He wants to lose and tries to win;
I've felt his very bones.
I love so hard it must be sin.
I need his stick and stones.
I'm thrilling from his callouses;
That conscience of a man.
I showed him life's sweet chalices.
He gave me all his damn.
Inspiration is one of those things
that we try so hard to look for
it is already right in front of us,
pining for our attention.
Sometimes it's in the smallest things-
the way the wind
breathes ever so slightly
on the trees
blowing them back and forth
Sometimes it's in the stressful things-
like how at times
sleep seems to run from us
faster than Usain Bolt
But most of all,
(and I bet this'll sound cheesy)
inspiration is inside
each and every one of us.
So there's no need to find it
It will come.
You hear a white noise thrum before the three piano notes. They linger in your mind for a space, and then the next three piano notes resolve the phrase, that white noise thrum underlying everything. All of this will recur several times while you sip your coffee, strong and black, and you hear a bass note repeat with increasing frequency: it's pressing you, until a new pitch pushes the white noise upward into the second track and its expansive layers over the beat. Your mind quickens and your fingers come alive, yearning to type.
At least, that's how it works for me when I brew some coffee and put on Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross's soundtrack to The Social Network. Other beverages are acceptable substitutes, I suppose, but there's a purity to drinking one's coffee black, particularly if you grind your own beans.
Inspiration is like fishing, some days you're catching a bounty of bluegills while others you're waiting on a full hook with nothing but a few curious biters under the water. Fish also bite based on the weather. It's said they are the most willing before it rains and uninterested in cold fall temperatures. I believe these so-called old wives’ tales as my luck has undulated based on these factors. Find what circumstances make you tick, it doesn't matter if you're thinking of it from the perspective of the person or the fish. Is the worm too big? Is the weather too brisk? Are you too impatient? It's best you investigate all avenues, put a pin in every possibility on your mental corkboard. One day you'll come back to it and realize fish don't just like worms, they like cheese too, it turns out you can catch larger fish in colder temperatures, and boredom leading to impatience is just an illusion.
Sometimes putting your feet in the cold water can be a soothing relief on slow days, you can observe its smooth ripples that distort the figures of small fish below. You can look for big mouth bass that swim by and never bite at the hook, bringing a moment of adrenaline that maybe this will be the exception before their silver green bodies flash past. Aquatic plants below your feet part to its streamlined body. They are often tall and green enough to change the color of the lake when you look at them closely. The lake has a calm mood all to itself, providing a reassuring feeling that patient contemplation will lead to a catch. There's much to be said about the personality of lakes, they each have a unique one that's hard to read if not observed by the scope of a lake grass blade.
Soon you'll have days when your bite ratio is better, but still a painful disappointment. Several fish will float a hair’s length from the hook, taking rabbit bites every twenty minutes. They do this but never go all the way, only looking on with mild curiosity or spurning the old worm when you bring it to their hard lips. Their actions are comical. Each individual has their unique motives. The steady onlookers bite hard before rain, the spurners only take their chance when curious schools don't crowd the bait, and curious biters don't go for the hook at all.
When the environment is right a bountiful harvest is nigh. Small panfish will come by the dozens, being filled in large buckets and dumped back into the lake after a final count. The catches are short and sweet, a simple tug and reel to catch the fish out of the clear water. There's no time for long contemplation, there's no profiling of fish personalities. It's all watching for a bite and pulling up. Quick thinking. The only priority is fast reflexes and deep concentration on the action below, a fast-paced pondering, and the more you ponder the sooner you'll realize that fishing is not about catching fish at all.
Inspiration can come from obvious sources, like stories and characters we love that resonate with us and want to make us create an equally impactful world of our own. But I find this to be more of a motivator than a true source of inspiration. Sometimes it's helpful to revisit the stories you love when you're feeling uninspired to remind you of why you fell in love with your craft. Though in my opinion, the best place to find an idea is in the real world- but filtered through a different lens.
Dreaming in the shower of what you coulda/should/woulda done in a situation? Make it into a story. Looking at the news and thinking "Oh, god...it's the end of the world..."? Well, what would happen if it was? What if [insert historical figure here] was in the modern day? One thought can lead to another thought and then another until you have a brain tickling concept that usually turns out to be a very different beast than the train of thought that inspired it.
Brainstorming is one of the first steps to writing. You write out some ideas and do your best to flesh them out in a tangible way. Daydreaming is the more fluid precursor to brainstorming. The idea isn't on paper, it's just floating about on our brainwaves, cruising along on a current of thought and seeing what happens. We're told for one reason or another not to let our thoughts wander and to force ourselves into linear focus. To follow a 1-2-3 process. To write for X amount of minutes a day. To meet this deadline. To fulfill this word count. Daydreaming is free of all of this, and can often feel counterintuitive and unproductive for that very reason. It's okay to just let your thoughts drift off for a bit. I feel as if a lot of creative people don't give themselves the space to truly ebb and flow.
Admittedly, you can't daydream forever. At some point, you have to allow the seed you've planted to take root and then put in the work to nurture it into a full composition. And the way you choose to nurture that is up to you. Some work best giving their creation constant attention. Others work best by working in bursts and stepping away until they're ready to revisit with fresh eyes. Both are equally valid. A piece taking longer than expected to complete doesn't make you or the work a failure. I personally believe that there are times when trying to complete a piece is so difficult because there's more you have to learn, intellectually or emotionally, to bring it to fruition.
My Beautiful Lovelies
My beautiful lovelies. My precious babies. All I can hope for is for both of you to be wonderful people. To be able to stand up for yourselves, to love instead of hate, to respect unless disrespected, to experience love and heartbreak and love again, to find something you truly enjoy doing and to be happy and accepting of who you are. There's so much I want for you both, but so much I'm unable to give you. Sometimes I feel sorry that I might not be competent enough for a mother for you guys but, regardless, I try my best everyday. I hope that you guys are able to live long lives, but secretly I feel guilty for birthing you two into a dying world.
You guys are far too young to have caused me any disappointments, but I'm overloaded with my own for not being able to start you guys off with the life I hoped I could. I promised myself that I would never bring either of you into this world in the same situation that I was in, but I failed to keep it. I'm sorry I couldn't do better. Not just me, but your father too, are doing everything we can to make sure you guys can spend the rest of your childhood in a place we were never able to spend ours.
All I can truly wish for is the happiness for my beautiful lovelies.
You Have to Have a Habit
Inspiration? Nothing inspires me to write. I inspire me to write.
Perhaps more so is the intent on writing. bits and pieces come into play be it from watching someone in the park, out by the lake, watching tv, news coverage, to what's on page twelve of my local newspaper. Hell, it could come from remembering only a portion of a dream.
ideas are everywhere and anywhere. For instance, two days ago there were some violent thunder showers here, An hour later, the sun peeked its way through grey clouds, and all was right again, but it gave me the strangest idea. A what if, if you will. What if the sun was drenched in solar rain clouds and it rained only on the sun for days and days and the sun was getting weaker. And it affects our planet and the people on it? That was what I thought at the time. So, ideas, thoughts, they are random firing pins in your brain.
Next time you are out, say grocery shopping, take notes of how some people spend time gawking over the fresh produce or the meat section, or how people react in the checkout line. Perhaps a laundromat watching people fold their clothes before leaving. both examples could prove to be funny or strangely serious.
Read other authors to get a fresh spin on old ideas. After all, authors read authors. And just about everything on bookshelves in stores has been done and redone. but give it a new twist, a different spin and suddenly it becomes new (again).
In a slump? Walk away, get your mind on something else for a bit then come back to it. we have all had that brain fart but eventually it goes away and then you are back on track.
True story: Mid-eighties, I sat in front of a typewriter, one sheet of paper in the roller and stared at it for almost two hours! Two hours! Insane, I know, but my brain was telling me I had something to write and lo' and behold it finally came to me. Twenty minutes later I was finished and went to bed. It's on here somewhere. (I'm Not Insane but They Won't Set Me Free.)
On a side note, everything I have learned, outside of education, has been trial and error.
And like I have said many times ... Write what you know, research the rest, and if you need help, ask.
Does it Matter? Does Anything Matter? Does Matter Matter?
Writing is of making matter.
I don't type. I ooze;
'Savor words which make me fatter;
Splat my brains like booze.
Corpulent, my cogitation slithers with absurds,
Through strain and consternation,
Squirms it's way to words.
Writing's asking "what's da matter?";
Mattering the what.
Writing is of making matter matter when it's not.
The Mind Is A Symphony
Procrastinating is the processing of the next project,
It's not being lazy or waiting for rejects,
The mind is trying to get every musician and instrument,
Into the right position, it's preparation not amusement
On the outside you are nothing but a thinker,
But inside you are the conductor,
The one who takes a sheet of notes and turns them into a refined melody akin to a bee who turns nectar into sweet
It's a sacred routine that very few understand easily,
Creativity is a symphony, people love the harmony
But never stop to observe the chaos that created that same beauty.
I Will Complete My Projects.... Eventually....
I love that there is a challenge up about procrastination. It gives me something to write about while my Hugh vs Leftover/Pirate & Crew storylines are dormant. I've even been guilty of procrastinating on writing Bible journals recently. But as for today's topic of procrastination, here are some of the traps I fall into....
- I'll write on my lunch break.
Sometimes I actually do, but normally I am mentally fried and just want to do nothing when lunch comes around. I also don't like having to stop writing once I hit a groove in order to return to work, so often I will abandon plans to write once my break rolls around.
- I'll write tonight when everyone goes to bed, and I have a quiet house to work in.
When I'm awake enough, this actually is a great time to write. But most of the time, I am equally exhausted as the rest of my family, and I wind up going to bed without writing a word.
- I'll get up earlier and write in the morning.
Sometimes I can crank out something short like a Bible journal, but this tends to not be an optimal time for stories on regular work days. This falls into the "I don't want to have to stop once I've hit a groove" trap, and I am also a big fan of the snooze alarm. I have been better about getting up earlier to do some reading and praying, but early morning writing is still hit or miss.
So how do I break this cycle?
I try not to be too hard on myself. Writing is a hobby for me, so it isn't something I have to do. But when I read the words of others, get inspired by their lives and the lives of the characters they create, and also enjoy stories through other forms of media like gaming and anime, I remember that I love writing because I want to do the same things that these writers do, and I acknowledge that I will ultimately get back into it. I try to write at least a little something each day to keep the writer mind going - gratitude journals through my church tend to be that daily routine for me. I've found that when it comes to feeling like writing, I have to just start, even if it doesn't feel natural to do so. Just about every time that I do this, I begin to find the inspiration and motivation I need, and the love I have for this craft emanates. In compete irony, I had to force myself to write this piece about procrastination, and now that I've done so, I'm glad I did. I wish all of you the best, and I thank you for the words you write - words can't express how much your work means to me. Cheers!