mrissa: (Wait -- what?)
Drinian, who turned out to be my friend Heathah's younger brother N: Now is the time in the dream when we have to build a Dawn Treader!
Me: The time on Sprockets?
Drinian/N: [eyebrow]
Me: Seriously, a Dawn Treader? They're generic now?
Drinian/N: Look, if you didn't want to spend some of your dreams building boats, you should have gotten your mythic-emotional resonances with a less seafaring people.
Me: ...fair enough.

[We commence the building of the boat.]
mrissa: (getting by)
There are some things that happen in your life where the only good thing you can say about them is that they are over and you don't have to go through them again just exactly the same way.

Or at least that would be true if you didn't then dream reliving two of those experiences in excruciating detail in one night.

This would be a very good time to tell me something good that's going on with you, even if it's as simple as good food you ate or a book you're reading that seems promising.
mrissa: (amused)
I dreamed that someone had embroidered for me a little long, narrow motto in a wooden frame for above the door to my office. It said, "Never give up. Never surrender." And it had the Galaxy Quest ships picked out in cross-stitch and outlining stitches.

If anybody really is good at that sort of thing, which isn't likely and we didn't expect it, my birthday is July 26.
mrissa: (tiredy)
I feel like saying, "My in-laws have gone home, and I am beyond tired," risks sounding like, "Oh, gloom and despair, the wretched in-laws have gone home and left me a wreck." When in fact they were not wretched at all, they were very fine in-laws, and I'm glad they could come so that [ profile] markgritter and his mom could share their birthdays (and Matt, Dave, and Grandpa Lyzenga could share them with us). But I am still a frazzle and a nubbin through no fault of the in-laws'. Yesterday I had a nap. A nap! Those of you who know what a bad napper I am will know what a thing this is. And nevertheless a nap is what I had. I was that level of stare-at-my-fingers tired where you ask yourself, "Which is more important? A) Send a video to Matt of a barbershop quartet singing the Ewok victory song. B) Balance the checkbook." And then A wins. (Given how tired I was, it's probably just as well I did not attempt financial management even on the small-scale. Still. He hadn't even asked for the Ewoks.)

Last night I had my first dream that I forgot my cane and had to try to wobble around without it. New category of worry-dream, gee thanks, brain. I also dreamed--well, all the ways I can think of to cut-tag this for those who are phobic would probably trigger the phobia, and I know of at least three of you who have this specific one pretty strongly. Suffice it to say that I dreamed very, very vividly of a thing I am not phobic of but some of you are. It was Very Symbolickal of the vertigo and the vertigo treatment. Subtle my dreaming brain is not.

Last week [ profile] timprov reminded me that every time I finish the initial draft of a book he has to remind me that finishing the initial draft of a book exhausts me (never mind the other things going on in the last few weeks). I said, "Oh, do you?" Which is I suppose why he has to every time: if I remembered him doing it, he wouldn't have to do it again every single time.

I'll have a book post later today. For some reason I've had a run of library books that are beautifully written and completely devoid of kindness between the characters. I've been getting a hundred pages in and saying, "I have no desire to spend time with these awful, self-centered, unkind people any more." Of course not every book has to be full of kind people doing and saying kind things. Naturally not. But when nobody seems to like each other, even a little--and what's more there's no sign that they ever did--it's hard for me to want to stick around and watch them have sex and fight anyway, no matter how lyrical the prose is. I don't even have anything clever and pithy to say about it. Just--done now.


Jul. 24th, 2009 11:34 am
mrissa: (tiredy)
Gahh, what an unpleasant night. I woke up at 3:15 with the sense that something had gone horribly wrong. Ahh, postcognition! You know, the superpower where you know stuff has happened after it does and you witness it and people talk to you about it? Yah, great superpower there. I could maybe deal with being awakened in the night by a precognitive event, especially if it was a specific one. If I woke up at 3:15 a.m. thinking, "Must--stop--godfather--from taking the 101 to work--", and I had some reason to think that a) he does and b) something bad would actually happen and I could stop it, y'know, that'd be worth it. Text godfather, go back to sleep. But postcognition, no. Waking up with the sense that my grandfather has died, some of my other favorite people in the world have some really serious problems, and I've had debilitating vertigo for nearly two years--yah, thanks, brain, I think that revelation could actually have waited for morning. Actual morning. Which 3:15 is not despite the phrase "3:15 in the morning," which is more commonly pronounced, "3 $&%#@* 15 in the #$%&$*@ morning."

Which is why I was propped in the corner of the kitchen counters so I could rub the skin off previously-toasted hazelnuts at 4 a.m. without falling over. Because what else are you going to do at 4 a.m.? I mean, really. It's not like I had enough brain at that hour to think, "Oh, I'll just work on this story, then," and doing finger exercises on the piano was right out, and if I was too dizzy to sleep, I was too dizzy to deal with hot things, and therefore no baking at 4 a.m. for me.

I did eventually get back to sleep by the expedient of propping two of the (rather large) sofa pillows under my knees so that I could have dreams of being safely strapped in on a malfunctioning space station rather than bouncing around free like I usually am on malfunctioning space stations. This is good to know. Safely strapped in is way better. But if I am frankly not at my best today, you may blame postcognition and vertigo. Dammit.
mrissa: (Default)
What I wanted to tell you here comes with some extraneous details, so please bear with me; I know it will be the first time in the history of livejournal in general and my lj in particular that such a thing has ever occurred.

So. With the vertigo, I need to have longer workouts to make me hungry enough to punch through the nausea so I can eat. People need to eat. This is a rule I have. This is how I can make the rule happen right now. And an hour and a half of bike every single day--plus weights most days and yoga or Pilates some days--means that I sweat a bit and need to launder the workout clothes after one wearing, especially since I work out in the clothes I sleep in. So instead of getting two nights out of a sleepshirt, I'm getting one. This means I needed new sleepshirts so that I can do a big load of sweaty sleepshirts in extremely hot water at once rather than having to wash small loads in extremely hot water every few days. So.

My mom was out shopping, and she agreed to stop in at the Land's End outlet up past Khan's, you know, the one by Don Pablo's. (Perhaps you don't know. It's the one by Don Pablo's. Now you know.) It was January, and she knew I needed more sleepshirts and had not gotten more sleepshirts out of Christmas, at least not in the quantity required. And they were having a sale on good soft cotton sleepshirts, long-sleeved, well-made, very basic, that had been made up as packages for Christmas. They were each tied with a ribbon and a tag, so in January they had to go on sale. I didn't mind the ribbon and the tag in the least. Two of them had snowflakes. I like snowflakes. The third was something I would never wear out in public because it is a vastly unflattering color for custardy-colored me, but for sleeping and working out it doesn't matter much: it's the color of unpainted canvas.

My subconscious has taken this and run with it. Every night I wear this sleepshirt, I have dreams that it's been painted or otherwise done in the style of one visual artist or another, and the rest of the dream goes along with, sort of colored and styled in the appropriate palette. So far I have had Diego Rivera and Frida Kahlo in the same night, both Monet and Manet (different nights, though), the Bayeux Tapestry, fake-medieval Victorian tapestry, Rodin (the sleepshirt was sculpted iron, which was awesome), Alfred Stieglitz, Edward Burne-Jones, Tyko Sallinen, and Mark Rothko. Last night it was some of Dali and some of R. Crumb.

The pleasantness of the dreams is not well correlated with how much I like the artists in question, so I should be careful what I wish for. But I do hope this keeps happening, and I hope I get Rene Magritte and Akseli Gallen-Kallela before I wear the thing to shreds.
mrissa: (nowreally)
Okay, brain, REAL SUBTLE. I mostly don't like zombies in my fiction. ([ profile] buymeaclue and [ profile] cmpriest, this does not mean you.) Turns out I'm not all that keen on them in my dreams, either. But giving me for my only weapon...the lap desk I sometimes write on? Come on. Either get more subtle and complicated (and thereby INTERESTING), or hand me a dream note with the intended message on it and move along to something with a rhinoceros and a gazebo.
mrissa: (tiredy)
I failed my sleep roll last night. *yawwwwwn* Going to be a long day. (Nothing in it seems particularly likely to drag on, it's just that I don't have a lot of energy to face strenuous things like pouring myself a mug of cranberry juice without staring at them for a minute to remember how this goes. Juice. In mug. Right.)

I am really, really tired of all my dreams taking place on a malfunctioning space station. I think my subconscious could get more creative than that about the vertigo. I really do.

Anyway. The excitement of yesterday came when my mom came over to help us out with house and yard stuff and was trimming the bushes in the front of the house. She found the foreleg of a deer. Ewwww. Fairly fresh, too. I thought about not mentioning this, but then I thought maybe it would be worth the reminder that Eagan in particular and suburban locations in general are not as completely distant from Nature Red In Tooth And Etc. as people might like to think. There have been sightings of cougars, coyotes, and at least one small brown bear in the area, though not in our neighborhood, in the time we've lived in Eagan. We're feeling pretty good about our decision not to let our 12-pound dog out in the fenced yard by herself after dark: anything that might stash a deer's foreleg in our bushes for later gnawing enjoyment would have no difficulty with Ista. Anyway the bushes are drastically cut back and will be less tempting for uninvited carnivores to skulk in, and also less likely to be guest-eating bushes. Go Mom.

Late June book post later. Now, more of The True Tale of Carter Hall.


Dec. 17th, 2007 11:01 am
mrissa: (winter)
Last night as I was going to sleep it felt like my brain was pushing through snowy pine branches.

I woke up feeling pretty sure that there's a lamppost coming up one of these days.
mrissa: (tiredy)
I was so tired this morning that not only did I take a nap on the couch -- not only did I move upstairs and take another nap on the bed when awakened by the Inquisitive Beast -- but in my dreams in both naps, I was trying to stay awake and failing. I tried to stay awake at a con. I tried to stay awake driving. I tried to stay awake cooking. I tried to stay awake riding a log flume with [ profile] retrobabble, a friend from sixth grade, and the characters from ST:DS9. And could not do it. A log flume ride, people. In my dream, I woke up damp and disoriented with [ profile] retrobabble and Dax looking down at me saying, "Poor little critter, she's all worn out."

There's probably some hidden meaning here. If only I could figure out what it was.

Actually there was a less obvious meaning. When I dreamed I was trying to stay awake driving into the sunrise, I woke to find that there were trucks carrying live trees all around me, in full spring color. The trucks were herding my car while I slept, keeping me on the road. I tried to keep my eyes open to see what the trees were, but the sunlight was too bright. But I know what they were now that I'm awake and can remember them and make sure. They were ash before me and elm beside me and fir behind me.

This is what happens when you let kids cut their teeth on D'Aulaire's Norse Gods and Giants (now D'Aulaire's Book of Norse Myths). Even when they're asleep you can't stop their brains from doing this sort of thing. It just sort of goes on and on.
mrissa: (hippo!)
1. All right, livejournalers: what does it mean if you dream that monkeys of various quite distinct types were gnawing on your hands all night? I need your theories!

2. I am heading off to Convivial this afternoon. I seem to have a manageable number of things to do in the meantime. I don't think this is going to be one of those conventions when I disappear from the face of the internet until Sunday, but on the other hand it'd be nice if I spent the time at it doing things other than reading lj and writing e-mail, so -- some sort of middle ground there, I guess.

3. As good as garden tomatoes are in season, sometimes they are just that bad out of it. Most of the grocery store tomatoes one gets that are really bad are more in the direction of, "Are you sure this is food instead of damp red styrofoam?" than in the direction of, "Ick ack what smells like that oh Lordy it's the tomato." (I had originally put the actual smell comparison in place of "that" in the last sentence. I went back and removed it. You may thank me. Vivid similes are a double-edged sword.)

4. I don't go around telling salespeople that I know exactly what their job is like because I sell stories, and that's selling things. I don't tell programmers that I know all about their work because I use a computer. I do not, in fact, accost the mailman to tell him I know all about his job because I put stamps on things. So please do not tell me that you "totally get" what writing fiction is all about because you have a cousin who writes grant proposals -- well -- she wrote one grant proposal, once. This does not make me feel warm and fuzzy and understood. It makes me feel like you are an idiot. Because you are, if you do this.

5. The more history I read, the more I believe that if you say, "Nobody in [large demographic group] was doing anything interesting then," you are wrong and speaking from ignorance. Primates get bored easily, and while some of them remain boring, a large enough cross-section of them will turn out people making up art forms and crafts, gadgets, discoveries, social/political/religious movements, etc. etc. etc. out of whatever little they have. So anyone claiming that the interesting stories in the fantasy world they're writing about are with one demographic group -- well, they have created something utterly unlike any human society. Take the most repressive society and the most repressed group in it, and I guarantee you they will have some kind of underground culture, secret signals, politics among themselves and between them and the larger group. They will be Up To Something. Because, y'know, monkeys: we're like that. You don't have to write about every group in every society -- you can't. Fiction is particular. But an awareness that there never was and likely never will be a human society with only one interesting demographic would be welcome in some fabulists. For heaven's sake, not only are the high nobility not the only interesting demographic in feudalism, actual feudalism relies upon the fact that they aren't!

I don't even really want to link to the discussion that got me thinking along these lines, because I think that the person whose work sparked the discussion is definitely and completely not making the "only one interesting demographic" mistake, and I very much do not want to associated it with that person's name even subconsciously.
mrissa: (auntie: Robin)
You know you really, truly love your godson when you dream of writing a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles fanfic novel just because it would make him happy.

That's "dream" in the "involuntary nighttime brain activity" sense, not in the "rose-colored girlish dreams" sense.

*goes to scrub brain*
mrissa: (tiredy)
You know those nights when you dream you're Mac from Veronica Mars and you have to hack a bunch of amusement park rides' control systems while riding them in order to keep evil stage magicians from killing everybody, and you wake up exhausted and convinced that it was your brain's way of dealing with the vertigo sensations?


Never mind, then.
mrissa: (frustrated)
The great thing about vertigo is that it makes the word "adventure" apply to so many more situations than it otherwise would! Taking a juice glass and a dirty towel downstairs simultaneously: what an adventure! Feeding the dog: adventure! Taking a shower: wheee, adventure!

You can tell that the vertigo is really going when you have dreams of space travel instead of sea travel, because even when a boat pitches around, you know which direction down is, mostly, sort of. Dreams of space travel, yay!

Also, um -- um --

I'm sorry, I've been sitting here for ten minutes trying to come up with a third positive, cheerful thing about vertigo to make it a nice structural pattern, and I've still got nothing. Oh, I know:

People with vertigo are more creative than people without vertigo, and also we have stronger senses of hearing and of smell!

Yah, okay, so it's not true, but it's not true of blind people or depressives, either; why should they get all the unwarranted good press when I can have some unwarranted good press all my very own? I'll bet people with vertigo are the next stage of human evolution! See ya, suckers! You'll be having your stable little lives, able to maintain the strong sense of local vertical that has kept you down, while we will be ruling the universe from ranch-style houses? Well-padded ranch-style houses in space! Yeah, that's it!
mrissa: (tiredy)
Okay, so I expect weird dreams when I'm sick, even when most of the fever is gone.

But I just got out my Finnish-English dictionary and discovered that what they were singing/chanting in my dream, over and over again, was, "Where is Väinämöinen? Who will be our Väinämöinen?"

With drumming.

So that was pretty creepy.

(Luckily, I'm used to picking up bits of languages without knowing I'm doing it, so my brain producing coherent Finnish sentences was not that creepy even though I don't speak Finnish. I really think the drumming was unnecessary, though. And the wailing.)


Jun. 9th, 2006 08:32 am
mrissa: (Default)
Still dizzy. GAHHHHHH. May not make it to Andrew's wedding this weekend. This does not please me, in case you were wondering.

The up side to this wretched week is that I seem to be having excellent dreams about people I don't get to see very much. They're generally extremely happy dreams. Even the bit where the dream ended with [ profile] ksumnersmith standing up and saying, matter-of-factly, "And that's why I'm going to help you kill that [word I have not heard Karina use]" -- that was disconcerting, but still happy.

Who do you get to see in your dreams, if you remember them?
mrissa: (Default)
Two rejections, one of which was a policy change to no longer accept unsolicited manuscripts.

[ profile] yhlee took a writing survey which included the question of what you would write if you were the writer you wanted to be. I don't think it works that way; if it does, I'll never find out. I don't know how else to become the writer you want to be except by writing the things you really want to write. I don't think that always works, it's just that I don't know what else does. I've known some people who needed to write things they thought of as "practice" or "not serious" or "not real," but most of the people I know who've done well with that have written things they thought were fun or interesting.

This is the life you get, and you don't know how much more of it you get. Waiting until you're perfect, or even some nebulous "better," is not going to make it the life you want. Don't wait until you're skinny to wear pretty clothes. Don't wait until you're no longer nervous to ask that special person out. And don't wait until you're your own ideal writer to write the story that has wrapped itself around your heart and head. You'll never learn to do it justice but by trying.

Central Iowa was extremely dusty yesterday. Not dry -- the creeks and all were plenty full. Just dry. Also our car CD player attempted to eat one of our CDs, but we thwarted it with judicious application of my knife. Why I Carry A Multitool, Instance 476.

I'm pretty sure that since this is lj, "does this happen to anyone else?" is going to be yes here, but we'll give it a shot: sometimes I fall asleep after reading something and dream that I'm still reading it. Does this happen to anyone else? The style stays constant -- apparently my brain can either produce the correct style on command or the illusion thereof -- but the plot often veers wildly off into a different direction completely -- from [ profile] truepenny into Agatha Christie, for example, or from David Brin into Connie Willis, or from Patrick O'Brian into Isaac Asimov. This is disconcerting, particularly when I wake up and try to go back to where I was reading before: wait, is this before the butler killed Bernard? Have the dolphins started running madly around the corridors yet? Has the Zeroth Law of Naval Battles been discovered, or is that a few pages on?

On second thought, maybe this is just me.
mrissa: (Default)
How is my morning going?

"It took two skalds, a god, and my little sister to stop it," said Kjartan grimly.

Like that.

I got my inspirational amber shinies from [ profile] elisem yesterday. I looked like a Viking princess in them. If a Viking princess wore blue jeans and a black camisole, that is, which I feel confident she would have if she'd had the chance. (The camisole is the kind you can order in your actual bra size -- and, more to the point, in my actual bra size -- so it is a structural garment rather than a merely decorative one. Hurrah. With wires and everything. Way more comfortable. Yay internet.) And [ profile] elisem and I geeked about books and the way history rolls over and does tricks for writers who pay it any attention at all. Also I got an artist's challenge of the month piece, so we'll see where that goes. Probably after I'm done drafting MSS and at least one other short story. Also I saw more sparklies to covet, but I was a virtuous Mris and did not buy any of them.

I don't dream that [ profile] timprov has died nearly as often as I did before he went into the hospital, but I still do dream it. So I checked. He isn't dead, or wasn't an hour ago. So that's good.

Still hovering about two inches over the phone in impending auntiedom....
mrissa: (getting by)
In my dream last night, [ profile] careswen was very sick, and she was screaming and screaming. When I scream in my dreams, it comes out like a kitten mewling. Apparently the same restriction does not extend to [ profile] careswen.

You know what, brain? I don't actually have to worry about everybody I know, some of them for made-up dream reasons. I could just worry about the people who have worrisome stuff going on right now. Heaven knows they're numerous enough.

We're in a "no news is good news...or at least not the worst possible news" stage right now with some of our family. Waiting waiting waiting. And also waiting.
mrissa: (writing everywhere)
The moral of my dream last night was apparently that [ profile] lydy and I should not become hackers. As [ profile] timprov said, "Who knew? Well, okay, everyone. But aside from that."

Also, I can apparently write novels again. It's not that I ever intended to stop. It's just that I was Between Novels for an awfully long time. And now I'm not; The Mark of the Sea Serpent is in that stage where it's acquired gravitation, and things go where they're going and it's all going to be okay. Until I get another 20K or so down, and then it's going to suck for another 5K or so, but that's okay; that's how it goes.

Actually, if I recall correctly, my main problem with writing Dwarf's Blood Mead was that I never thought it sucked, and that made me nervous. So maybe the same will be true of The Mark of the Sea Serpent, it being a sequel and all.

There are worse problems to have.

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