Sunday, July 18, 2010

Farmer's market, dinner, gluten intolerance and.. oh yeah, writing

Summer in Florida is Brutal, with a capital "B." Whereas my brethren in the northeast have endured their heat wave with much valor, I can't help but look at our own forecast and see that we are in a perpetual heat wave. Fortunately, the state of Florida is air conditioned.

Which would be fabulous, if the central A/C in this place weren't making me so congested.

Yesterday was spent furniture hunting, running from garage sale to garage sale to World Market (because it's here, so why not?). We wound up with two large picture frames and a drawing of the Eiffel Tower in a beautiful frame, all for $15. My DP (that is, dear partner) is always on the lookout for new frames. We have more frames than we have pictures to put in those frames.

Now we look pretentious. Yes!

I was getting cranky, and food shopping always cheers me up! After being completely disappointed by the price of produce in Florida supermarkets, we did finally get to a farmer's market before they closed up.

7 yams, 6 cukes, 6 squash, 5 peaches. One peach
didn't make it to the photoshoot, it was too delicious
to wait!

This guy was on sale at Target... it's been a long
time since I've had animal crackers, and well, I
needed a cute cookie jar. You can see his foot in
the previous picture!

Almond-oatmeal crusted spicy chik'n seitan
and agave candied yams

For $9.50 I got enough produce to last a few nights ($3 for the peaches, but worth every penny). DP also picked up a jar of hot pepper jelly for $5 from the same elderly couple who sold us the squash, cucumbers and yams. It was delicious, so I'll forgive him for trying to convince me that they use gelatin to make jam.

The yams were candied in canola oil and agave nectar last night as a side dish for dinner, to complement the oven-fried seitan with an almond-oatmeal crust. The gluten certainly didn't agree with me a few hours later, but it was still so tasty. I love making my own seitan; I kneaded some ground chickpeas in with the wheat gluten which kept the inside soft while the almonds baked into a solid crust.

On the writing front, I've definitely been doing some procrastinating. I reached my 10k word goal, but coming up to the final scene I decided I'll be doing a major rewrite of the entire bit and target for a different publisher.

This is why I consider myself more of a pantser than a planner. I do have a pretty good idea of where I want a story to go, by I let the characters take me in a direction that is most suited for them. The scene I wrote last, I had an entirely different idea of what was going to happen before I reached the end. Upon rereading it, I realized I was putting too much of a censor on myself and it was making the characters struggle in their dialogue and actions.

Still on the market for some cheap furniture to get this place set up by the end of the summer. Every day is a search for a desk so I don't have to write from a folding chair with the laptop getting warm on my lap, or from the floor...

Friday, July 9, 2010

Back to the grindstone

After a very refreshing few weeks of:
  1. Moving out of our apartment
  2. A 21 hour drive (nonstop except for potty breaks, with three cats and no rear-view mirror access) to Tallahassee
  3. Spending oodles of money refurnishing after The Big Purge of all our worldly acquisitions
  4. Refilling my pantry... $200 later, I'm still only eating lentils, rice, beans and sundry nuts and seeds
  5. Losing one of my rats to an upper respiratory infection caused by a lung tumor :(
I've been encouraged to get back to writing with a vengeance. In the past week, with help from Ju, I've churned out about 4,000 words to a planned Nocturne Bite. My goal was to have 10-15k finished by Monday, and I'm sitting pretty at 6k as of Friday morning. I gave myself an extra week to edit, but what has been slowing down is that I'm constantly editing as I go along. The expected date of submission is July 20, with final edits on July 19 and taking care of the rest of the submission requirements on that final day.

Is this realistic? Absolutely not. I've never finished a lengthy story in my life.

Well, with one exception.

I used to write fan fiction.

*Exaggerated gasp*

I was am madly in love with The Legend of Zelda series. I had been playing the game since I was in diapers, and with the release of The Ocarina of Time just a few years earlier, my infatuation with the series took hold. In 2001 at the ripe old age of 16, I sat down to pen my first ever fan fic. Well, my first multi-chapter fiction. If you search through there, you can also find my incomplete Harry Potter story. I'm particularly proud of those two because, even though the writing and character development leaves much to be desired, it is the first evidence of my pantsing habits. I'm a life-long pantster!

I think I will write more on my thoughts about fan fiction at another time, because there is a lot to say about it from the perspective of a writer.