Triple digits!

I made it to 100 followers! I never thought I would make it this far and I would like to thank all of you for finding my writing interesting enough to keep looking at it in your reader day after day. I don’t write for followers – besides the not so subtle post yesterday – and it’s great to think that people like me for me, not some manufactured Kate Turville robot.

From William Lloyd and Aether House who have been with me from the start, posting their thoughts consistently, to the new follower smilyking1976 who discovered my blog last night, I appreciate you all. You stay classy, followers.

In other news, I had to take AshCat to the vet yesterday and when I opened his carry box I discovered a family of redback spiders living in it. Needless to say the box ended up here:

It has been sprayed and rained on.  I'm now just waiting on a thunderbolt, then I may venture outside and pick it up again.

It has been sprayed and rained on. I’m now just waiting on a thunderbolt, then I may venture outside and pick it up again.

My character walked in and punched me in the face.

How do your characters come into existence? Do they appear in your head fully formed or do you develop them slowly over time, adding pieces of personality here and there?

My characters come from all over the place. For instance, in the story I’m writing now, my main protagonist just appeared to me one day and I haven’t changed her in the slightest. Her friend however, she’s based on my younger sister, a flighty young girl who should take things a little more seriously. I’ve changed that character countless times.¬† I also have one character that I discovered while doing research for the story, and this is the man I want to talk about.

He was a handsome fellow.

He was a handsome fellow.

Not many people know much about – or have even heard of – Paracelsus. He was a Swiss German physician, alchemist and general all around occultist, whose writings surprisingly talked about God a lot. That doesn’t matter though. What matters is this quote, because it was the reason Paracelsus became the basis for one of my characters:

And I do not take my medicines from the apothecaries; their shops are but foul sculleries, from which comes nothing but foul broths. As for you, you defend your kingdom with belly-crawling and flattery. How long do you think this will last? … let me tell you this: every little hair on my neck knows more than you and all your scribes, and my shoebuckles are more learned than your Galen and Avicenna, and my beard has more experience than all your high colleges.

BURN! This guy was badass. Not only that, but his real name was Philippus Aureolus Theophrastus Bombastus von Hohenheim. He liked to be called Paracelsus because he believed he was next to Celsus in terms of skill as a physician.

How can you not make this guy a character? He is the most interesting person I have never met. The intimidating thing is trying to create a full character based off of him that does him justice. He is that awesome. Listen to me, I sound like a groupie.

I'm not the only one who wanted to adapt him into a character.  Anyone recognise this certain father?

I’m not the only one who wanted to adapt him into a character. Anyone recognise this certain absentee¬†father?

Anyway, he fit perfectly with what I wanted to do with the story, so I adapted the real person into a character that hopefully does him justice.

So tell me, where do you get your characters from?

On the job hunt

Today is a job-hunting day. So why am I on WordPress? Well because you can’t tell me what to do! I need an outlet from the boring cover letters that I am being forced to rewrite over and over and over again.

I have applied for four jobs already, varying from retail to administration, a far cry from the profession I spent five years studying for. But I need to get an income before I can start being a bit more picky with my jobs.

I couldn’t quite figure out whether I should take off my qualifications on my resume, in the case where people read it and say, ‘Why on Earth is she going for this job then?’ It’s because I can’t get a job anywhere else people! Just hire me already! Come on, I’m good at pretending I’m happy, surely that’s enough to hire me. Also, according to the creepy old men I used to check in at the hotel, I have a nice smile. That has got to be a credit towards me surely.

Anyway, better get back to it. Anyone else in the same job-hunting boat? It’s the most mind-numbingly boring and stressful boat to be on.

Recommended to me #1 – Charles Bukowski

Throughout my posts, I have been lucky enough to receive comments recommending I check out a particular person,¬†song or movie. So far, I have been writing these recommendations down in my little red book so I don’t forget them, but today I decided to take it a bit further.

Here lies the first of (hopefully) many posts regarding the recommendations of my beloved commenters.

charles-bukowski

Although I had heard of Charles Bukowski before, it wasn’t until¬†Eric Ian Huffman¬†recommended his poems to me after reading my post To the poets out there¬†that I actually looked into his life and writing. This was in the hopes that I could learn more about poetry as a whole and experience poems written by a celebrated writer and poet. So what did I learn?

For those who don’t know, Charles Bukowski was an American writer and poet with over sixty books to his name. His work mainly revolved around the themes of poverty in America, writing and what I would call the gritty realism of everyday life.

I read several of his poems (four listed below) and I think the thing that stood out most for me was that he did not sugar coat anything. Everything that was written was stark and honest. As a not particularly apt poem reader I found his poems interesting to read and gave real insight into his life, from his past to what he was looking out of the window at during the time of writing.

Eric Ian Huffman¬†mentioned that Bukowski could be crude, but I found that it worked well with his writing. I feel his poems wouldn’t have worked half as well if he had restrained himself in that way. It conveys emotion and character that stands out, something that couldn’t have been achieved without the odd crudity.

While I can’t say I learned any more about the structure of poetry – it may have even confused me more – Bukowski’s writing left an impression with me and I’ll be reading more. If you haven’t had a look at his works before, they are definitely worth the time.

Charles Bukowski Poems:

relentless as the tarantula

the great lover

the schoolyard of forever

here I am…

An intellectual says a simple thing in a hard way. An artist says a hard thing in a simple way.

~Charles Bukowski

If you have anything you think I will like, please leave a comment. I love learning about new things!

The questionable 50,000 words

I posted last month about the semi-writing block that seems to occur at 20,000 words and I have reached a new dilemma now that I have written 50,000 words of my novel. I have now reached the point in my writing where I am questioning every word that I put down.

This is entirely my own fault, of course.¬† I couldn’t be bothered writing too much last night so I decided to read through the first chapter, just out of interest.¬† Just out of interest.¬† Who was I kidding?¬† I did the stupidest thing I could have done at this point in the story.¬† I should have just contented myself with reading a book.¬† But no, I had to read some of my own writing.

It has awakened my inner editor.¬† I was reading through the chapter and screwing my nose up at almost every sentence, my fingers itching to change the whole thing.¬† At least I wasn’t that stupid.¬† I managed to throw myself from the computer and have since occupied myself with¬†things that have nothing to do with writing on yet another beautiful day in Melbourne.

Until an hour ago, when I decided it was time to knuckle down and pump out the words.¬† I managed 1500 words, but it was at a cost.¬† Every piece of dialogue I wrote, every description, every action, I was comparing to the first chapter.¬† I was trying for consistency when that shouldn’t even be entering in my mind at this point.¬† I should be just letting the story flow out of me, not double checking what the name of that town was that I mentioned 45,000 words back so I don’t accidently get it wrong.¬† God forbid that I have to read an incorrect town name in my first edit.

I’m also now questioning whether the story is really any good anyway, and why should anyone read this if it horrified me to read it.¬† Silly Kate, you should know that you think everything you write is awful.

The confidence has taken a shot as I step over the halfway mark and even though it’s all downhill from here, I think I may be wearing stilettos while doing it.¬† Tottering down, anxious not to fall and smash my face into the pavement.¬† Taking a few side steps to recover my footing and taking triple the time to get down that damn hill.¬† This is why men wear sneakers out on the town.

I’m now going to take a day to separate myself from what I read of the first chapter and hopefully I can steal some sneakers to get down the hill.

Moral of the story is this:¬†Don’t reread your manuscript until you’re ready to edit.

A guide to my swears.

I’m fairly conservative for a 24-year-old living in a Western society. Actually, no I’m not, but when it comes to swearing I’m a prude. This becomes most apparent around my partner, who used to be in the army and swears like a…trooper…

He is now starting to control his swears and I am trying to loosen up a little, but I still cringe when I hear excessive cursing on the street. I feel that swearing is one of the lowest forms of communication. If you can only communicate with one word syllables to express your anger, dismay, joy, sadness, grief, confusion and various other emotions, then you aren’t very disciplined a person.

The occasional swear is perfectly acceptable, especially if you’ve just hit your toe on the coffee table. But littering it throughout every sentence is a bit much. Please spare my poor ears!

I have recently come up with a list that I am much more satisfied with and would be incredibly happy if I were to hear dropped in the street. If any of these resonate with you, please use them. They will convey your meaning much more effectively then the ‘customary’ swear words.

Fu…nnel-web spider

Sh…ishkabob

C…onstable Larry

Cr…ap – I’m not that much of a prude.

Tw…ilight

Okay, they’re no good. But whenever I feel the need to swear on my blog, these will be seen in place of the usual swear words. Don’t expect to see them very often.