The biggest development this week, by far, was finishing the second draft of my WIP on Monday. It was unexpected and yeah, feels pretty damn good. Right now I’m “recalibrating” in preparation for the second and, likely, most intensive round of revisions. Luckily, critique partner connections seem to be going well, and yesterday I resumed my 30-day free trial of Scrivener to get the plot back in shape. Yeah, turns out I might have a distinctive style and cool ideas for world-building and scenes, but I struggle with plot. In other good news, my Children’s Lit class is reading Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban for next week, and rereading it has actually been great for my writing as well as, you know, for all the other reasons because it’s really tightly plotted.
In other news, I voted for school elections, got tickets to the Harry Potter Alliance’s Yule Ball (!!), and applied for an internship at PEMBERLEY DIGITAL! Not getting my hopes up because there’ll probably be hundreds of applicants who can move to L.A. before summer, but that’d be pretty neat.
For Intro to Lit, we 1) are now a full week behind on the syllabus (sorry, William Blake), and 2) read CHARLOTTE TEMPLE by Susanna Rowson, a little-remembered but once massively bestselling early American sentimental/seduction novel, which I’ve actually read before for my American Women and Gender class. Children’s Lit was a lot of fun as usual with 1) CHARLOTTE’S WEB (which I read for the first time–I know, I know, but it was actually very nice because the roommate and I went to the park to study and the sun was out and there were pretty dogs and cats and the freaking birds were singing) and 2) CHARLIE AND THE CHOCOLATE FACTORY (which I loved as a kid, and while it’s still very fun, I have to say I hadn’t really noticed just how sadistic and at times even mean-spirited it is). And for Victorian Lit, more of The Moonstone.
Solid week of classes, but the real excitement was in my Poetry workshop. No class Tuesday; instead, attended a reading by visiting poets Fanny Howe and Sandra Lim. It was my first poetry reading and their work was great! As outlined here, Thursday was the day of my second workshop critique, my second packet due (6 poems and 7 pages this time–only 4 needed, but I figured I should get all the feedback I can get), and my presentation (“The Pheasant” by Sylvia Plath).
Read THE OCEAN AT THE END OF THE LANE by Neil Gaiman. I really liked it! It was especially fascinating after all my Children’s Lit classes–it’s an adult book, of course, but its story about childhood draws on a lot of the same themes as classic children’s fantasy. I also finished my first issue of Poetry magazine and I really enjoyed it. Some memorable poems: “New York to San Fran” by Allen Ginsberg, “The Relics” by Sharon Olds, “We’re This and We’re That, Aren’t We?” by David Hernandez, and “Choi Jeong Min” by Franny Choi.
Biggest musical discovery was finally listening to The Decemberists. I’ll admit I hadn’t actually known what “prog rock” is, but I love folk and ballads and Gothic Nick Cave or Kate Bush type stuff, and yes, the somewhat self-serious “literary”-ness appeals to me. I really like Picaresque and The Crane Wife. I can’t bring myself to listen to What a Terrible World, What a Beautiful World, though, just because that title is so awful my God–c’mon, be better than Fallout Boy or The Fray. That is like, Scars & Stories bad.
That’s “all” for this week–OH! I forgot! I got my first proper follower! That’s pretty cool, huh? So I’m officially not just talking to myself! (Also I noticed some more views today, which may or may not be someone else. Anyone who’s out there, feel free to say hi! :))