Sunday, September 26, 2010

old entries

Starbucks with my cousin Robyn

We should always write things that other people will like and understand...
"Is that true?"
She shakes he head and puts her chin in her hand. Her cheek is dangerously close to her pen which is in the same hand.
She laughs while i read this out loud to her as i write it down. Im writing as quickly as i can, without looking up, i imagine she is making faces at me.
She reads the text messege when my phone vibrates on the table between us.
"Tell everyone that i just served Colin Powel, theyll find that interesting." says the text messege. Max is a waiter in the hamptons.

"...1990 right?"
"when you were born."
"yeah. when were you born?"
"1998. ...that makes you almost 20."
"Robyn is very good at math." i say and write. "i wont tell her, except to write it down in front of her-"
"you're saying it out loud too."
"...but the fact that robyn is so good at math makes me a little anxious because she is twelve and i am bad at math."

Starbucks, as usual is playing jazzy pianoey music and i play air piano to amuse no one but myself... ...and possibly robyn, and possibly to six year old boy who is standing across the room.
In a Pull focus moment, with the six year old boy in focus, and his father out of focus behind him, the focus shifts and his father comes into focus and his father is laughing at me and i am playing air piano and rocking back and forth in my purple easy chair and i suddenly remember how old i am.

"Robyn leans back in her chair in exasperation, crosses her leg over her other leg and stares at me while i write and read. she twirls her hair around her finger and pouts. But with i write/say 'pouts' she laughs. When i write/say 'she laughs' she smiles. when i write/say 'smiles' she grabs her cheeks and pulls them so her eye sockets stretch. She crosses her arms and says 'crossed.' she blinks, sniffs, giggles, sticks out her tongue.
She crosses her eyes. when i pause to jazzy dance in my chair.

What we need

In the short story, 'Archangel' by John Updike, the archangel explains to someone, you, all the gifts that he brings.
He begins with 'Francansense and Myrr'
moves quickly to 'food shelter and love
and then, there among the nessesities: "the light glinting off the wet ink of your own words" as beautiful to john updike as ' the white arms of a woman dancing' and something about fixing wooden houses with pegs of opposing grain."


There are two men in the bus station who, one at a time, begin to speak to me and then in their own time- one after writing me a short song in spanish, the other after feeding me a dried fig (from a sealed container that i saw him open... i mean... i guess it could have been poisened... but i mean... come on.) ask me for my phone number.

at which point i explain to them that they are ruining the story of 'friendly interaction between strangers meeting in the bus station" if they continued to ask questions like that.
But they continue to ask. I tell one that i have a boyfriend. I tell the next one that i have sixteen boyfriends.

"i hate them all!" I yell at Adam later than night. we are standing in the rain while he smokes a cigarette even though I've been proud of him all summer because he quit.
"give us a chance." he says
we go back inside and watch the end of the matrix. And when Neo dies and Trinity brings him back to life with her stilted love spell, i put my fingers over my ears and hum.
Adam throws a pillow at me which knocks over my tea. "i think its sweet." he says.
It is sweet. But while squid machines burn through the roof, showering down red sparks, while profecies and mesiahs are proven and people are dying inside their minds, sweet is not the point.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

images from last night's dream

my mom and i were trying to find parking in a small town. but we weren't in a car... we were walking, looking for a place to park a car, i dont know where the car was.
we walked to the end of a dock. there was a boat like a roadside hamburger stand, there was a window towards the dock and people bought food through through the window. we asked the man on the boat if we could park our car on his boat.

someone is threatening to hit me, i never see his face only his hands.
i ask him something along the lines of 'are you going to hit me?" and in way of explanation he shows me that he has a glow in the dark star sticker on each knuckle. and by showing me that he means that he will not hit me.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Creative writing class today- stream of consciousness "Story with dialogue."

Button Spider (Fiction)

"my imagination is being killed by like philosophies."
That's all i have to say and after it I'm fine with walking in silence but we've only gone a few more steps when she yells:
"Your imagination is being killed by philosophy and...!!"
I start to laugh. "That was it."
"what do you mean?!"
"just that. I don't know." we turn onto our street. "if i say more i'll stop meaning what Im saying."
we walk up the porch steps and she sort of stomps her feet as she says "I don't get it!"
We both reach into out bags at the same time and fall into that silent race of: who will get their keys out their bag and open the door first.
she wins this one- her bag is smaller, less pockets.
She's turning the key and then she screams, and runs off the porch.
"the spiders back."
i see it now, pressed flat on the white wood like a button. i have a weird urge to press on its body like a doorbell. Including its legs its about the size of a quarter.
She's stepping in small circles on the path, flapping her hands and saying "ugh ugh ugh ehhhhhh heeeee..."
I reach bravely towards the dangling keys, the spider twitches but stays put. I open the door and the spider suddenly comes to life and with eight legs but in one movement, slips around the door. Its inside.
I pull the door closed again, i might have crushed the thing but i cant be sure if its dead between the frame and the door or skitting around the dark kitchen. So we leave the house and head back to the bar where we stay until one o'clock.
On our way home we pee between the parked cars.
On the porch she makes me open the door. Inside we turn on all the lights. In bed with the lights on we shiver because we're lying on top of the blankets to keep our feet visible so we know there are no spiders on our ankles.
I stare at the corners that the ceiling makes with the walls, afraid to blink and when a piece of her hair brushes my shoulder, I jump out of bed.
When we wake up all the lights are still on and i remember my dream-
"we were afraid to unlock the door," i tell her, "we knew there were baby spiders inside the lock and if we turned it we would crush them."
"So crush them." She opens the cabinet and looks apprehensively inside before taking down two tea cups.
"It was a dream." i take the tea that she hands me, "it was like, we didn't want to have spider guts on our keys. It wasn't that we didn't want to crush them, just that we thought it would be gross."
Three days later, when she's at work, i see the button spider playing dead on the floor. I stamp on it and then step out of my boot leaving it standing like a grave stone in the center of the kitchen.
We walk carefully around the boot for days. I wear flats to work. Finally we get her brother to come over and we lock ourselves in the bedroom while he cleans up the crime scene. When he's done both my boots are by the door and there isn't even a stain on the tile.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

The Problem

If youre reading this right now then you dont mind the way i talk.
You read my blog, so you're used to deciphering sense out of pieces of sense... like that- what do i mean by that?
i dont know. but it sort of makes sense in the context of the rest of the post... and maybe you've learned that if you keep reading maybe you'll arrive somewhere where i will explain it to you...
so keep reading.
That point is: I don't really make sense.
It's fun.
I don't usually mind it. I like to say what I want to say, whenever I want to say it, without pausing to even decide exactly what it is that I want to say...
Today, in Sci Fi, I had a comment about the Alien Messiah- "its kind of like what you were saying last class," i said when Soyoung (possibly the smartest person i have ever met) called on me, "...about how DNA has taken the place of a soul in modern thinking. The soul, or religion, used to 'tell us who we are' and now its DNA or science, that tells us... and the 'Alien Messiah' is like- we're too educated, too modern to believe in god or in god having a son and sending him to us to save us, so now we project the same exact idea onto the 'more scientific' idea of a an alien. A superhuman being coming from somewhere more tangible than heaven- another planet- sent to us by superhuman beings who have lessons to give us."
anyway... i made sense!
and Soyoung understood what i was trying to say. Instead of nodding slowly and saying "i think i know what you're saying" she just knew what i was saying. and elaborated on it and...

my point is:
what i am trying to say is:
quite concisely put:
without confusing you too much before i get to point:

I plan on making more sense from now on.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

My Homework Turned Into a Blogpost

Maybe its because I’ve grown up with a writer and then grown into a writer
So my mom and I do not have lives.
We have the stories that we are making out of our lives.
So nothing is original because everything is part of the story
Nothing is genuine because everything is being written down as material.
The truth is that if I were to write a story about my life and accurately describe my character it would sound a lot like:

“This happened to me and I thought this about it and decided it was meaningful and that this should happen next if it was gonna say an interesting story… but since its life not a story I cant write it as it happens so what happens ends up being even better writing because there is the added element of the fact that I was pretty sure something else would need to happen for it to be interesting but something else happened and it was still interesting.
The motivating factor in a lot of my character (my) choices seems to be make the story interesting…youve been on one note for too long, next scene, new character... blablabla...
what i mean is: I am awake.

I hear the rest of the people typing in the library around me while I type. I hear the girl across the cubical talking on the phone.
“Hello” she says into the silent library-clicking-keyboard room, just as I type about obsessively watching everything I do for information- hello- she greets me.
You called me.” She says next… somehow that’s part of the story as well, but I’m not writing a story right now. I’m not writing the story of
‘katie writes an outline for the report she has to give on Dave Eggers tomorrow.” I am not writing a story about me doing my homework. I AM DOING MY HOMEWORK!
This is what Dave Eggers taught me- not how to do it- but he taught me that it is allowed.”

When I read a book I watch the movie of it in my head.
so I tend to like writers who sound like they are talking to you because that is not just like watching a movie.
I like to ‘listen to this person talk’ to me for a while which is something that, without a lot of voice over, you cannot translate accurately into a film.

Dave eggers tells you what he is thinking
He tells you what he thought about what he thought.
He tells you that while he was thinking it he was also thinking about writing it down and using it in this book that he’s currently writing that you are currently reading.

Maybe this is why I tend to like autobiographies of writers-because they get to tell me that they are writers and I find writers more interesting as narrators than ‘civilians’ who don’t notice every layer of the experience the way a storyteller does.

Dave eggers taught me to write it exactly as I thought it.
This might just be because we think alike so when I write down what my brain sounds like it comes out in a similar rythym to what his brain sounds like.

He taught me to tell the whole truth because its more interesting- even the pieces of the truth that don’t make sense because the truth doesn’t usually make sense because the inside of you brain- un altered by the sense you have to put it into when you speak it into words- doesn’t usually completely make sense.

So my favorite books tend to be books that I could never imagine making into a movie because the story is not the point. The choice of words is the point and the little rants that have nothing to do with anything are the point.

That said I think its very interesting that Dave eggers now writes screenplays.

He wrote Away We Go and it kind of didn’t work because his scenerios/ diologue/ characters are so beautifully described to make you completely get it and read into it- that when put onto a screen it seems like overkill. Every character comes out a bit like a characature.

Then he wrote Where the Wild things are.
The point of the way they adapted that movie was the make every event, every character and every image into a symbol.
People found that movie childish, or ridiculous or boring.
But I say- read the movie like a dream, read the images like words.
Everything that is said, everything that happens every image, is symbolic of Max.
People get that and find it over the top, ridiculous…
But Dave Eggers is doing something that feels a lot like writing words with images. Every one of his images is a word. It tells its own story. Every line is layered with meaning almost to the point of indulgence… no TO THE POINT OF INDULGENCE. He is digging into every symbol and laying it out for you and your saying. ‘well duh.’ And hes saying ‘well look at what you’ve come to regard as obvious.’

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Adapting Let the Right One In

The first assignment of sophomore year: 'Make a one scene adaptation- shoot it in one shot.'
The minute he said that i, from somewhere in the pile of images inside my brain, conjured up this image of someone with big eyes climbing up towards the camera from below. i dont know why thats what i saw but the minute it appeared i had to have it.

Just like last year, while i sat in that first meeting with my class and they asked us 'whats your favorite movie? whos your favorite director?" and everyone was naming films and directors that i had never heard of so i felt really small and like an imposter and like i didnt desreve to be in this program-so, i challenged myself 'think of something really cool. right now" so that i would feel filmy enough to stay- and what i thought of was:
a boy is crouched in a a derelect destoryed house. The shot is from below, from the floor and the boy is balanced on his feet, knees bent, bending towards the camera and hes not wearing a shirt and he looks like hes in pain and there is a broken skylight window above him where rain in dripping in and suddenly- huge angel wings spread out from his back. The angle of the shot lets his chest obscure how the wings will work...
and it worked out well because i spent pretty much all of freshmen year working with some version of that idea- boys with wings...
So, this year, i thought of this image of a person climbing up towards the camera and then i had to find something to adapt that i could put that image into.
Let the Right One In is about a little boy who develops a little boy crush on a little girl who, for some reason, doesnt seem to have parents, get cold in wintery snowy weather wearing only a tshirt, or eat food.
The little girl turns out to be a vampire and the little boy decides to have a crush on her anyway.
im adapting it- because of these scenes in it where the girl stands on a jungle gym way above the boy and the boy looks up at her...
and it seemed to fit my 'climbing up at camera idea' rather well...
Heres what im gonna do:
theres this really huge rock by my house. We call it Indian rock.

Im gonna stand on the rock with the camera and little human boy is gonna walk through the trees (Which if they cooperate will be bright shades of yellow and red in two weeks) the boy climbs up onto the rock.
The vampire girl is revealed standing below the rock, she circles round the rock, trailing her hand along it, looking up at him, being strange and vampiric. Then she climbs up to sit near him- MOMENT ACHEIVED!!!!- and they talk. and then he leaves.
end scene.
Im very excited.
ill post it when its done.

Monday, September 6, 2010

Saturday, September 4, 2010


Molly was colder than we were so we let her wrap herself up in the blanket that we had all been sitting on. the blanket didnt cover her feet so i put her feet in her bag like a sock.
and jordan put his notebook on her face and wrote in it.
I was lying on my back in this perfect dent in the grass that felt a lot like a temperpedic mattress- the way it makes a dent that fits your back just so-
and i was looking at the sky
and i was thinking about how the clouds in the sky looked like ice with cracks in it
and i thought that if i could find a piece of ice-sky that was completely outlined and completely not connected to any other bits of sky then it would fall down and drape over whatever it landed on like a really thin filmy sheet that would-for instance- cover the top of a tree and then stretch all the way down to the ground and stay that way unless someone punctured it- then it would rip and tear and the perfect cellophane-ish sheet would just start sticking to iteslf and basically be impossible to deal with it.

then it got even colder so we went inside.

Friday, September 3, 2010

Sophomore Year Begins

We call our room "The Tower' because from our window we can see all of our kingdom and all of our subjects.