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to worry less, to drink less, to write more, to exercise more, to take life less seriously, to be disciplined with chores; to clean out the garage (as a guarantee against having to move!), to sort out storage in the house, to spend more time in the garden; to live more, to love more, to spend more time with family and to keep in touch more often, to walk the dog every day, to make time for all the things I enjoy doing Ė movies, knitting, reading, writing, internet, music, puzzles; to make the effort to do things that are hard
Two friends walked together to a too-far away toucan. The toucan touched a tree that trembled terribly. Meanwhile a field-mouse fled the farm to find a fellow mouse in the metropolis. The friends followed and the toucan flew; as the crew flies it flew faster than the friends, who followed on foot. The tree ignited and a bush fire began. Metro-mouse met field-mouse at the door as ash fell from the sky like soft grey papery rain. The friends fled the flames and found the toucan in safe sanctuary in the city in a nice little flat above the mice.
I drove to Orange today. It was a perfect day for a drive. There was cloud cover most of the way, so the hot summer sun was not beating down. I even had the air con on and it hardly had to try to keep the temperature down. I put my sunnies on when the sun came out just past Lithgow. It lit up the golden fields with their huge rolls of hay, and lane markers shone in the sun like strands of tinsel. I followed them under tiny cotton-wool ball clouds, studding all-over the amazing blueness of the sky.
What am I doing? I might write about something that has actually happened, or I might start with something that has happened and embroider around it, usually very free-style. It is fun to see where it will end up, as I write with the limitations I have set myself for that particular piece. It is helpful to know I can write something Ė anything Ė every day. It is a discipline. It can be fun. When I know I have to write something every day I will watch for something to write about, and that makes me more aware of my surroundings.
I like beginnings. I like the opportunity to start again from scratch. The start of a new year can feel that kind of opportunity. It is the first day of work after the holiday season. I would like to throw everything out of my office and pack it all in again excluding anything I donít need or want, because it is such a mess. Iíd like some more furniture for the house. I have no cupboards! Summer has finally begun, with the first wave of hot and humid days. I like to be at work when it is like that.
It is hard to get back into this writing every day business. It is hard to remember to do it, and then hard to find something to write about. Practice will help, I am sure. All I can say about today is that it is very hot, the kind of hot where it is good to be in the air-con at work and where it is good to eat dinner outside on the veranda, and where it is too hot in the house to sleep; the kind of hot where I think of getting a very, very short hair cut.
While walking home this morning, I saw a lot of people working. I thought I might write about that: when I was returning home from walking the dog, the working day of many people had already begun. I tried to remember each person I saw; then I thought I could make some up Ė it doesnít have to all be real; I then realised there was no point: people working, what is it, a childrenís story? And yet when it was true, there did seem a point; as if something that actually happens is worthy just because it is has happened.
I attended a literary evening at the NSW State Library to discuss Kate Grenvilleís novel,
. It is always interesting to hear opinions different to oneís own. I often have a hard time accepting other points of view, and in having patience when people seem to misunderstand what is being said. I should do more of this sort of thing (social interaction!) because it is good to counteract that. Earlier in the day I made an assumption about some people and was told ďyou shouldnít make assumptions about peopleĒ. I know I shouldnít, and I will try not to.
I am now reading a novel in which each chapter is written as a single sentence, which is very odd to read and I find my reading enters a sort of sing-song mode, which I am trying to stop because it is annoying and interrupts the flow of the reading: it is hard to read the longer chapters and each chapter seems longer than the one before, but I have not checked if this is actually the case, as it is more difficult to tell, the longer a chapter is; although the characters are very interesting, and are well-mapped out.
I have enrolled in a bookbinding course so I can make my own books to write in. It will be fun! The last course I did was on short-story writing. That was fun too. It is on Tuesday night, which happens to be the same night as my writing group, but it only goes for two months and the writing group meets only once a month. I donít know if Iíll go to the next State Library talk as my friend canít go. Iíll check out the book and see. Iíd like to see some movies. So much to do!
I have a library fine to pay, for a book that I didnít even read because I didnít like it (a South American ďmagical realismĒ author). I am a member of several libraries and I have to pay for membership at that one because I live out of the area (it is near where I work, so it is convenient). The fine is 25c a day. That council has a reputation for revenue-raising, and it continues on to the library service! I dumped the book and ran and will deal with the fine next time I want to borrow something.
I am trying to be on the lookout for interesting happenings to base writing on but have not had much luck. I canít think of anything to write about, except the usual descriptions, like todayís beautiful sunrise (the moon was huge and sat behind a bird in a tree; spoiled by a red earth-mover in the background; or made more interesting, depending on your point of view. Iím not sure my best work lies in the area of description either.) The position of the moon had something to do with todayís predicted huge (but actually not very huge) king tide.
I am listening to the BBC World Service. I like it. It is what I wake up to when my alarm goes off at 0500. I bought two more books today. Both would be hard to get from the library, I reason. I now have three lined up to read, that I have to read for one reason and another. Movies too; I need to get myself to a cinema soon, and finally there are some movies showing that I want to see. I have developed a passion for desserts and one of my cats is a professional pet. End.
The one-sentence-every-chapter novel is not easy to read; firstly because it is hard to tell where one part ends before the next part begins, there being no full-stops or new paragraphs; secondly because when I find I am not taking in what I read I go back and start from where I started to lose track, but in this book I go back and back and back and donít get to a point where I can start again: often until the beginning of the chapter; I can see why full-stops and new paragraphs are important.
This month is flying by and I have less time than ever. I wonder how I was ever bored as it doesnít happen any more Ė except maybe sometimes at work. I hope to be able to think of something to write in February! For now Iíll keep rambling on about books and reading and stuff and try to get something in every day. Perhaps Iíll let my mind wander along paths of weird craziness in February. There doesnít seem to be much there at the moment though (that is, much of the weird craziness Ė or shall I call it imagination).
It is the last day of the working week. It has become a hot, humid summer. Reading other 100-worders: there are some who are poets, who use the language very elegantly and use short lines and line breaks. I would like to be able to do that. It looks like an intuitive dance with the language, how some people are good at dancing and others are not. If you are good at something it can look as though it is effortless and therefore that it is enjoyable to do. It could be the result of hard work and practice.
It is day one of the weekend! I will write that to be consistent. No poetry here right now but maybe next month as I have to think of something to write and some reason to keep going. Looking around, looking for inspiration, picking up a notebook and having a look inside, being reminded of outstanding things to do (ďhmmm, I must do such and suchĒ). I could write of existential angst! I have a new hair cut that I am not quite sure about, not that it matters now it is done. It is cooler, as in less hair.
I got up early and drove to the Dendy to catch the early movie: Frost Nixon. Next Sunday I want to do it again! It was free, as the start time had been mis-advertised, or so the box office person thought. It started at the advertised time though, which was great as I didnít miss any of the movie. I have a complimentary ticket because I renewed my membership, so I can use that next Sunday. I havenít heard from my writing group about not being able to make the next two meetings. Maybe they are still on holidays.
I have cancelled the next State Library booking. I donít have time to do all the tasks I set myself. Iíll read the book but it wonít be an assignment. Speaking of which, the book I am reading now, that is like an assignment, is titled The Assignment! I am starting to enjoy its craziness. Each chapter is not an increasingly longer sentence, I can now confirm. I am looking forward to finishing the book so I can read the notes to find out what happened! Hopefully I will know just by reading the book, but I am not confident.
I was going to give up on 100 wordsÖ not enough time, not enough to say. But I will press on, at least for this month. Iím two thirds done so I should at least finish this batch. Itís worth going on although I am not really sure why. It is alright to give up on things, isnít it? Perhaps I am doing it because of all those books I intend to make, to write in! I am reading what others are writing and a lot are about the authorís own life, and might as well blog as do that.
I had a terrible day today (terrible may be too strong a word), boringness here and no style. The only thing I am reading at the moment is the free train magazine; after avoiding its handing out for (probably) years Ė avoiding the acceptance of any hand outs Ė I am now accepting a copy; and you know what, itís not too bad. I like to read it because it is easy and in short snippets. I am not a good reader a lot of the time and I misread due to impatience and poor concentration. I might save money on books.
It is too hot and humid to do anything right now. It will be hot until Saturday according to the weather forecast. The house is like an oven and the hot weather is making me crabby. Iím not going to work tomorrow and Iím not sure itís a good idea as the air conditioning at work provides relief from the heat. I put off doing the food shopping today because I can do it tomorrow. I went for a late walk to get some fresh air before I finished dinner, because it was so hot I didnít want to eat.
I waited in the doctorís for almost three hours today. I took two books to read but couldnít be bothered getting them out for the first hour or so. I also couldnít help noticing that all eyes were on me for a short while and if I had started fiddling about with my bag I would have been watched by about 15 sets of eyes: very unsettling. After a while I became part of the wallpaper which is much more comfortable. I got out a book but was too tired to read so I had a nap in the chair.
I am now used to the heat; at least I think I am, but it is a dryer heat today. A cool change happened with amazing swiftness tonight, but it will be hot again tomorrow. I donít do much on Saturdays. A gusty wind sprung up this evening and so I didnít even walk the dog, for fear of trees falling. That happened somewhere on the Central Coast, but not here. Itís better to be safe than sorry. A four day weekend is fantastic. Iíve had two days and two days to go, like a weekend and a bonus weekend.
I am beginning every entry with the word ďIĒ, and that indicates it is all about me. I donít know if that is what I want. I donít even know if I want to do this. Today I did more work than I have done in ages. I cleaned the house and tidied the yard, trimmed some shrubs, put things away, sorted things out and organised things. Iím tired now. I woke at 3.30am or thereabouts and have been up since then; thatís probably why I am tiredÖ and how I got so much done! Iíll go to bed soon.
Itís a public holiday, Australia Day. I saw another movie this morning, for free, Slumdog Millionaire. Next weekend I wonít see one because I will have visitors. I finished all the housework I wanted to do this weekend. It makes a big difference having four days instead of two! I played a lot of griddlers over the four days too. I find them very addictive. Today was cool and wet, and a big difference to last week. Itís Melbourneís turn to head into a heat wave. Next Sunday will be hottest here, and Saturday we are going to the beach.
Work was good today. I had a lot to do which made the time pass quickly. I also had a lot of personal calls to make but I could do those and work too, as I was on hold for most of the time. I am trying to do the chores daily so they donít get out of hand. I am waiting for washing to finish so I can hang it out before I go to bed. Itís boring but itís better than letting jobs build up. Itís good to write 100 words each day, too, instead of catching up.
I am not reading anymore, other than the free newspaper on the train. I canít fit reading into my day but I will have to try to find a way, and I think lunch time may be the time. I have a very big book to read but I have two months to do it! It is so big it is hard to fit in my bag to lug to work each day, on the off-chance I will read some; so I leave it at home. I used to like to carry something to read on the way home.
Seen on the bus back to work from the city at lunch time on a hot day: an old couple happy holding hands, he with his shirt open to the waist and amateur hair cut; a woman in an outfit for the races Ė black and grey shiny skirt and blouse, stockings, heels and matching hat with lace; an elegant old woman with stick-thin frame and huge pink circles under her eyes, her hair in an S-shaped twist pinned flat to her head; a neo punk goth lesbian with rows and rows of piercings, and a smile, on her face.
I think I know what I am doing and why I am doing it: I am writing 100 words every day to get in the habit. If I can find something interesting each day to start off with Ė something I have seen, or something I have thought, and write about that. So there is some reason to get into the habit of writing every day I need to get another project going as well. There are so many real writers I feel a bit foolish on the one hand, but on the other I donít care if I am foolish.
There are family. There are friends. There are personal interests. Family and friends arenít necessarily into your interests, even if they are of earth-shattering importance. Family are there due to habit and the absolute chance of being born into the same household and sharing the same history; family have an obligation to be there, and family will be there for support when no one else is. Ideally, friends should share your interests, or you can find friends by taking part in interests in which like minded others also take part. Insisting that uninterested people listen is like looking for converts.
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