Saturday, April 23, 2005

Edgeless?

Blogophiles, I fear I'm losing my edge. I wonder, as I lie awake in bed, if the snark is draining from my entries. After at least 15 minutes of serious contemplation I think I've come to the root of the problem:

I'm not pissed about ANYTHING!

That's it, folks. That's the key. I'm not riled, I'm not irked, I'm not even irritated. Not even a lil yeasty itchy action. I'm downright happy! I realize that happy is a good thing....the best thing, but it's like putting my writing into a spray-paint-fume-induced coma. As recently as a month or so ago I was laced with a bit of cynicism and bitchiness, but now I have two jobs I like, money, and I plant flowers regularly. Not to mention the fact that dogs relieve stress and anger and I have three of them.

In truth, this thought actually came to me last weekend when I saw an interview with Carl Hiaasen on one of those nightly news shows...Dateline, Primetime, 69/69, whatever. For those of you not familiar with Carl Hiaasen, he's a wildly successful author from Florida who writes the most fucked up crime/satire you can possibly imagine. Here's a short blurb about his latest book, Skinny Dip:

Hiaasen's signature mix of hilariously over-the-top villains, lovable innocents and righteous indignation at what mankind has done to his beloved Florida wilderness is all present in riotous abundance in his latest. It begins with attractive heiress Joey Perrone being tossed overboard from a cruise ship by her larcenous husband, Chaz—not for her money, which she has had the good sense to keep well away from him, but because he fears she is onto his crooked dealings with a ruthless tycoon who is poisoning the Everglades. But instead of drowning as she's supposed to, Joey stays afloat (on a wayward bale of marijuana) until she is rescued by moody ex-cop Mick Stranahan, a loner who has also struck out in the marriage department.

The blurb doesn't even begin to touch the wackiness of his situations and satire, but it'll have to do for now. Hiaasen commented, on the nameless news program, that he continues to come up with riveting storylines because he's mad. He's mad about the human sludge that continually seeps into Florida from crooked residents to cheesy tourists and the befucked state of the environment.

In the past I've found my most entertaining writing comes when I'm uproarious about something....the negative talk about chick lit., porn in general, women's issues, wacky-jacked news stories, you get the picture. Oh, and Jonathan Safran Foer...*priming flamethrower*. But, like I said, lately....even keel. This good mood thing is killin' me. I haven't worked on my book lately...haven't written any articles...haven't even been following the news that closely.

HELP!

What lights the creative fire under you, reader?? What coaxes you into putting out?

12 comments:

  1. Coaxes me into putting out??? I'm a male--it comes naturally! So to speak...

    I had a whole sappy answer here for you, but when I read it before posting, it seemed like alot of crap, so I deleted it. I find myself a midget amongst you giants of writing. I absolutely love the way that both you and Dena write. It appears so easy for the both of you. It's fun, it's colorful, and I want to come back. Often. You're not the only ones, but you both are near the top of the pile.

    Hell--I just deleted another 30 minutes of crap. I guess I'm just trying to say that, for me, something just clicks. I think I generally do better with the comments, because there's something to react to. As for my posts, I rarely think about what I'm going to write until I've got my fingers on the keys. I just hope that when I've finished, that I haven't bored the reader to tears. Sort of like now...

    One last thought on my own writing--I've found that I'm not the same person when I post as I think I am in real life. I use a wide variety of vulgarities on a daily basis. Yet I won't write them in posts/comments. I'm not sure why. Almost like I'm afraid my mother is going to somehow find my blog. And there are other things, too. It's almost like I want to be a better person for all of you.

    And remember--when you get really desperate, you can always post one of those stupid lists, or maybe post a picture. Preferrably of you in a t-shirt and panties hanging plants!

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  2. LOL! Os....the eternal pervert. Thanks for the thoughtful reply. I'm glad to know you like my blog, even when I think it's crapola. I'm a bit different, in some ways, when I post. I use at least three times the vulgarities in my posts than I actually say in real life. I guess this is where I come to let my hair down. My mother knows I have this blog, and she refrains from reading it. lol Thank goodness. I'm always afraid a work person will find it....thus, much less posting about school than last semester. Oh the stories I could tell!

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  3. Being irked inspires me too. When I'm not, there's a total dry spell.

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  4. Well. Hah. =) This is gonna be kinda fun... I explained my entire post to Andy last night and felt totally brilliant 'cuz I get to throw outta coupla names to make myself sound brilliant... So here goes...

    First off, it's wonderful that you're happy. Isn't that really the goal of life? Happiness. Of course, it just so happens that ultimate happiness is the glory of God, but there are transitory happy things too, and they're good 'cuz it's all good 'cuz God made it (except for what's evil, duh).

    As far as the anger goes, Joseph Pieper has a little somethin' somethin' to say about that in The Four Cardinal Virtues. Essentially, anger isn't a bad thing, insofar as it's a righteous indignation as when Jesus overturned the money changers' tables in the temple. Dietrich von Hildebrand would've referred to this wrath as a value based anger - that is that Christ was angry about something of real and serious import. And so, according to Pieper, this is a healthy and holy anger. A temperate person then controls his anger to the extent that his anger is a response to a value or a disvalue, but never a nonvalue, so that when he sees a man stealing a little old lady's purse, he's more upset than when somebody squeezes the toothpaste tube from the middle, and he allows that anger to provide the energy for a just response - getting the little old lady's purse back.

    So, I would say that you're currently responding to the values in your life rather than the nonvalues, and that you just don't seem to have any disvalues to get riled up about. Though if you watched the news that might change... Which is why I don't watch it... It might make me do something... Or feel guilty because I can't do everything... Actually, von Hildebrand would also say that emotional response to nonvalues, especially excessive emotional response, is merely self-indulgent and completely inappropriate to intentional acting. Which makes it completely inappropriate to the human person.

    But that whole intentional acting thing is another thing entirely. Though it's a pretty cool thing.

    So, I would say that what inspires me to write is Jesus. And anything related to him. Which is everything. =) I think I could take just about anything and say something about it. It just so happens that w/e I say is likely to be totally inane or more intellectual than desired... (my blog is proof of that) Especially if it involves truth and justice. Though sadly I don't fall into the category of a brave Christian - according to Pieper all Christian fortitude derives directly from... Ok. I'm gonna stop posting on this stuff and go study it for my tests...

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  5. Oh yah, I was gonna say that I like your writing 'cuz it's way more colorful and lively than mine. You write with passion.

    I live on a pretty even keel and rarely ever let any big emotions flow over into anything besides bad poetry (which I'm NOT going to blog). Though I do have what I think is a decent poem about Andy... It's not very emotional though... Of course, the positive emotions really don't have words... Love of God - inexpressible. Maybe that's why it's so important to express our love in action 'cuz w/out the action, the words are too ineffectual to really mean what we want them to mean. And yet, also as Pieper (was it Pieper?) says, no it's not Pieper... Anyways. There's this idea of a fundamental option, oh I remember where I was reading this last, it was in Veritatis Splendor by JPII, but it's an idea that lotsa people have used... So the fundamental option is our orientation either towards or away from God, and through our categorical responses (that's everyday actions), we direct ourselves either toward or against that fundamental choice that we have already made. Through these categorical responses we can gradually shift our positioning so that we're no longer oriented towards God but away from Him. Feel free to reject that, you really can't believe that with the whole faith alone thing, but I rather like it. Of course, most Protestants, including Lutherans, don't really buy his version of faith alone) And there are those categorical options that are diametrically oposed to a fundamental orientation toward God - murder, ... Yah. I'm going to go shower and study... Stupid verbosity... Temperance. Must learn to control myself... Prudence... =D This making refraining from posting to my own blog so I can study rather ptless...

    I think you also refrain from rambling... Which is a good thing...

    Peace.

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  6. Sorry... =/ You'd think this was my own blog as much as I've posted today...

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  7. Andi-

    Well, just to simplify things...

    Aren't you actually pissed about...not being pissed?!?

    -Tim

    P.S. Congrats, you're pissed again.

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  8. *wonders where she went*
    You must either be having a fantastic weekend or a really terrible one...

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  9. totally not really on topic but is that the same Carl Hiaasen who wrote the Y/A book 'Hoot'? if so, that's very interesting...i guess i could go look it up myself...

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  10. That's the same Hiaasen, Ago. I haven't read Hoot, but I've heard endlessly good things about it.

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  11. Cher,
    You crack me up, but I love your posts, so don't feel bad about verbosity.

    I like the idea of, and agree with, Pieper. I like that anger...maybe passion would be a better word...of getting riled up about something important. The toothpaste anger just makes me tired. Pretty pointless.

    I hope you do well on your tests! Sounds like you've got this stuff down. :o)

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  12. LOL, thanks, Tim. Brilllliant as always dahling.

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