That Time of Year

No writing tonight. Get to it, Mucinex. Work that voodoo. I have to teach five hours tomorrow, and I need my voice. And I need sleep tonight, since that didn’t work out so well yesterday.

At least there’s tomorrow afternoon when I can get a run at writing. I want to rip the crap out of my godmother scheme and integrate troll and frost elf stuff.

Hack, cough.

Catherine

Hole in the Ice

Friday night was all right. I wrote for around an hour, and finally I managed to hammer through what has always felt like a layer of ice separating me and the troll story. I began to actually live the story. The characters actually began to talk to me. Nothing dramatic, like the story’s all different, but finally I have solid reasons for them doing what they do, and I have the imperfections I’ve been holding out for.

Now, if I just had a month to myself, I’d write like a mad women. I’ll still write like a mad woman, but it’ll just go more slowly.

I could’ve done with this breakthrough in November, but you take what you can get.

Catherine

Eclectic Entry

Thanks for all those really insightful comments on the Bible, Christianity, and Pat Robertson, the little dear. It was great to engage in discussion with all of you, thoughtful and thought provoking discussion.

***

I have a whole 29 minutes before I’m off to teach! Enough time to be eclectic at you. Without further adieu;;

1. Around 7 VP XIII women have said that we will do a group submit to the Realms of Fantasy all women issue. Chia Evers suggests we do interlinking stories. Heh. She’s crafty. At any rate, that’s half!

For my organizational mind, that’s

Chia Evers
Robyn Hamilton
Kat Hankinson
Darice Moore
Lisa Morton
Julia Rios
Catherine Schaff-Stump

Woo and hoo!

2. Jim Van Pelt’s extended analogy on Writing and Fishing, which I rather liked.

Hope you guys have great weekends. Mine’s likely to be action packed in a textual way.

Catherine

Never Invite a Desert God to Dinner

Right now, I’m engaged in a Bible study. Bryon likes his introspection about religion to be fairly intellectual, and I’m along for the ride. If the Bible study has done anything, it’s turned me into a more skeptical, less devout Christian. I don’t see this as a bad thing necessarily.

The Bible is always represented as the world of God inspired by God. Well, honestly, not so much. The books of the prophets read like the predictions of Nostradamus, and the prophets wrote these books according to what they wanted to say. The idea of a god who isn’t vindictive isn’t really introduced until much later in the Old Testament (Isaiah the third).

The first five books of the Bible are Jewish law, history, mythology, custom and society. Ecclesiastes is the book of doom–nothing matters but this life, so live well. And so on, and so on. Christianity isn’t in the Old Testament. I’m not sure why we feel this is an important book to read for Christianity, given that huge parts of it are directly opposite Christian philosophy

The New Testament? There’s a lot of “Jesus said” in the New Testament that contradicts the Old Testament, but there’s also a lot of writing by opinionated men. Paul shares his narrow-minded views with the rest of the world, and it turns out that his views have been used to promote slavery, sexism, and homophobia. Revelation is one big acid trip. Read it. Think about it. Discuss it. Don’t take anything as gospel, except maybe the first four books, because they are the gospel. I believe strongly that Jesus would want you to examine what he’s saying, because he is a consummate teacher.

My third problem is what isn’t in the Bible. Why am I reading excerpts from the Catholic version of the Bible for the study that are unavailable in my Bible? Who made that call? And why? And what does that say about what religious people want me to think?

So…the Bible seems to be a document that serves the purposes of man, written in large part by men to further their cultural and personal agendas. There’s room for loads of discussion here, but that’s what I’ve come to as I’ve been working through it.

One could venture opinions about how most of the “God as violent father” sections are ways to justify tragedy, especially if you believe that all things must have a cause in a pre-scientific society. For example, earthquake? God must be punishing you.

Does this mean the Bible is worthless? I don’t think so. I think it means the Bible should be read and questioned. I think that religion should be mulled over. I think that virtue can be both secular and nonsecular. I consider myself a Christian, although the divinity of Christ isn’t necessary for me to be one. I like the code. I respect other paths to spirituality deeply. Tolerance is my watch word.

Except when it’s not. Because I don’t understand fundamentalism in any religion. If I could think of a time when fundamentalism did something positive in regard to human rights and human dignity, I might have a different opinion, but I can’t find any examples. Usually, fundamentalism is a religious trench people dig when they want to fight the battle of us versus them.

Continue reading “Never Invite a Desert God to Dinner”

ROF Submit

Tomorrow’s post today!

I’ve mentioned Realms of Fantasy’s All Women Issue for August, 2011, with submissions due November 15th, 2010.

AND some of us VP XIII women thought it might be an exercise in unity if the 14 women in the workshop all sent in a story.

Later, maybe, we can try to organize another mass submission for the whole workshop, men and women alike.

Thoughts, VP XIII?

Catherine

Status and Process

For the first writing session of the semester, here’s the log.

Time: 1 pm -2:30 pm
Verbage Useable: 35K
All Verbage in Project: 40K
New Scenes: 2
Revisited Scenes: 3
Cut Scenes: 1
Backweaving Plot Thread: Notes in scenes to ramp up David and Grant Conflict
Kill Your Darlings: Considering that godmother role could be usurped by Quartz?

Next Sessions
1. Revisit the Widow, Hild, Manuel thread.
2. Plump out and structure chapter 7.

Hope you all are well.

Catherine

And Then There Was…More Than One

Dear Economy:

Thank you for allowing me to work at an institution where people can come to retrain and get an affordable education during these difficult times. I feel like I’m making a difference.

That said, I understand that there will be a budget shortfall this year, and you will whack the crap out of our college’s budget.

If you could see your way clear to remembering that we need personnel and money to help out all these needy folks, I’d appreciate it. Because otherwise, you could be keeping me awake nights, and beating all of us Kirkwood people about the head and shoulders during the day.

Yours,
Dr. Catherine

Translation: Work was blindingly busy. From the moment I walked in until the moment I went to teach, I was talking to a student or a teacher. And I stayed late for a meeting. Just too much job.

So it seemed very natural that tonight’s writing was about hallucinations, rather than adolescent troll angst.

And yes, regardless of cost, I am leaving Kirkwood to write from 12-3 tomorrow, as I teach tomorrow night.

Head still spinning,
Catherine