Sunday, December 16, 2007

Things I Wonder About

1) It's not the cold I mind so much, it's the dark. I always hit my lowest point during this time of year, and it has a lot to do with all that dark, overcompensating with too much eating (used to be pizza and nachos, now it's cheese-covered broccoli and sausage), too much brooding, and lots of meaningless arty projects and reading. When I get back from the holiday break, it will be getting light again! I always feel better when I get back from holidays with the family, because I know we're coming out of the Long Dark.

2) Is it really worth continuing to write books that nobody reads? How many years should you be writing books nobody reads? I mean, really. And even then, it's not like you're in it for the money. I'm starting to think I might feel *worse* having sold a book for 2K than not selling it at all.

3) Is is possible to have a boyfriend that you never see? I suppose that's a rather redundant questions, since I was in a year-long relationship with somebody I only saw, like, 5 times, and a year-long relationship with someone I only saw, maybe, a grand total of 14 or 15 weekends. It occurs to me that I've spent more time with my current boyfriend - real time - than I did with either of those folks. Sad.

Have I mentioned I'm bad at relationships?

I guess it's possible to be dating, but hard to have a relationship. Though I'm not exactly sure what a relationship would look like anyway. So it's best to just stop thinking about it?

And yet, here I am, stuck without seeing The Boyfriend, properly, all week, and faced with another week seeing him briefly (once), and then another week with the folks where, of course, I won't see him, and here I am, missing him stupidly and hating myself for it. I hate feeling like some kind of weakling woman. Truth is, no matter who it was, no matter the gender, I'd feel stupid and weak for missing them. I hate wanting people around, especially when it's one person in particular. I always feel about eight kinds of stupid, and it feels, always, always - like such an incredible weakness. I want to cut it out of me like a cancer.

I miss him. I miss hanging out with my friend.

And I hate myself for that.

4) The problem with eating so much cheese with my broccoli is that I'm about three more cheese-broccoli encounters away from having to buy new pants. Have I mentioned I can't wait until the Long Dark is lessening? Summer is going to be so lovely. Oh, the bikerides! The jogging! The trips to the park! Oh, the freedom!

5) Can kick-ass heroines really be physically kick ass if they suffer from a physical disability? How do you make a really physically strong, compelling, kick-ass heroine who has, say, no legs, a gimp leg, or, for the sake of argument, something like diabetes? So she can't really get very far without a handful of lifesavers. And why don't we write about more heroines like this? Is it really because it's so hard to imagine (it's not - the idea of a heroine crawling out of her wheelchair scrambling for a gun and popping sombody off comes to mind) or is it because, as SF/F writers, we're much more likely to write stories about people who are physically free? Because so many of us suffer from allergies, disability, poor health, etc? We read to escape our bodies; we game to escape our bodies. Why would we write about broken bodies? Don't most of us write to escape those?

6) Why isn't there a deragatory term for a man who has sex with prostitutes/only has sex he has to pay for? Really, that's pretty much something you'd assume would get the lowliest of losers tag. But then, is it just that a woman's worth is measured in how hot men find her and a man's worth is measured in how many women he can force (or convince - through money, looks, whatever) to fuck him?

And how do we change this perception? What would a society that had as many deragatory terms for johns as we do for prostitutes look like?

7) I didn't end up doing any of the work-writing I figured I'd do this weekend. I didn't have to do it, but I figured I *should* do it. I'll have time to do it in the morning, but for some reason, I feel guilt.

8) I want to buy my own house. I'll be taking steps to finally do this after the holiday. Paying off credit cards is all well and good, but I need savings in case I get laid off in April. And if I don't get laid off - well, it's time to start planning for the future. No one's going to do it for me, and I have to stop hoping that something great is going to happen that will solve all my problems. I would like my writing to start paying off, yes, but I'm starting to push 30 here, and it's time to put some security measures in place in case it's another 10 or 20 years before that actually happens.

9) I miss being around other writers. I miss talking to people about books and writing - not just online, but in person. I miss my friend Jenn. I miss us dissecting books and movies. I miss talking to David about SFWA hijinks and the latest jaunt to some foreign locale. I miss intelligent academic discourse. I miss having people around who I had so much in common with. Sure, I love learning all the new stuff, but most of the time, I feel like I'm trying so hard to learn about all this other stuff, but I've got nobody else around who's interested in what I find most interesting. It's time to hit up the SF book club at The Greene and the writer's group, even if it sucks. There are important parts of me that need some exercising, cause there's a big hole in me without them. It feels so lonely.

10) For serious, that was too much broccoli and cheese.

3 comments so far. What are your thoughts?

Calico said...

Wandered onto your blog accidentally...but had a thought.

I used to work with a woman who was stooped and limped and walked with a cane, but she was spunky! She told me once that people overlooked her because she was just a "gimp with a cane" but that they shouldn't because if they picked on her then she became a "bitch with a stick." It made me laugh.

There is some good fiction out there with "damaged" bodies starring, but not as much as perhaps there should be.


Jennifer said...

That depends on how you define "kick-ass." Does she physically have to beat the shit out of everyone, or can "kick-ass" have to do with personality?

I dunno, this isn't a disabled example, but I recall Cordelia managing to scare off vampires with nothing more than her mouth and some attitude...

Kameron Hurley said...

Well, I'm thinking of big, brutal, physically bad-ass women. I think the "frail but witty, strongminded heroine" thing is more or less standard - think Jane Eyre.

What I'm interested in is how do I create these physically powerful heroines I want to create but give them the limitations of a disability? Is it possible to be physically strong that way? Sure it is, but will people want to read about them? Do we, especially SF/F folks, just love our escape into strong, perfect bodies too much to watch somebody big, plain, and severely limited struggle through it?

Sure, there are books like that, but *popular* books?

Buffy and her ilk were all perfect-bodied. That was the trope Joss played with, which is fun to do *once* - frail blond girl can actually physically kick ass!

But when it comes to creating a physically powerful heroine who is *truly* physically intimidating and scary... we don't see those much.

And certainly not ones that are not-beautiful, brutal, and dealing with, say, chronic illness or a bum leg.

Though, that chick with the machine-gun leg from Planet Terror comes to mind....