On the heels of EM the Merciful

I hate the feeling that my goodwill and compassion is being taken advantage of. Without any word of a lie, as much of the time I spend looking after myself, equal to or more time is spent on looking after everyone else. I’m always the first one to say, “don’t worry about it. I’ll do it.” And so I take on everyone else’s burdens. I have a hard time delegating. Especially when I can do most of the things that need to be done faster and more efficiently than those around me can.

I’m exhausted. Both physically and mentally. My frozen shoulder won’t let me sleep during the 5 hours I night I manage to be in bed. The pain is inhuman. When I am awake I’m being pulled in a thousand directions at once: have you done this for me yet? Have you called this doctor for him? That doctor for her? Can you come with me to this or that appointment? Sorry, I’m too busy to help you. Maybe next month… You want the money I owe you? Fuck you.  This is what I listen to every day. And yeah, I allow it. But the truth is, I’m the only one who CAN do three quarters of what I do. It’s why I don’t have a job. Pfft. Like I sit around watching soaps all day.

And then everyone wonders why I go away on vacation alone.

I need a vacation. Again.

F is for Four Letter Words in Fiction

My A-Z Challenge this year contains posts about writing adult content in fiction – you will not find any adult fiction within the parameters of the challenge, except for illustration purposes.

I’m a huge believer of truth in fiction. Which doesn’t mean to say I don’t like a completely made-up story but rather that what’s important is the world and the characters within the world of a fictional tale need to stay true to themselves.

For example, a story I’m currently writing takes place within the confines of a city bus, in a real city in the real world in which we all live. Any and every conceivable character could ride on that bus; all shapes, ages, levels of intelligence, all with various degrees of respect. In order to stay true to my setting, I feel I must include characters whom I find distasteful – characters who swear, tell fart jokes, and are generally abrasive and disrespectful.

The same often occurs within the setting of a novel. Especially in dialogue, this can be a challenge when, for example, it becomes necessary to include a character who habitually uses a certain word. Like “fuck.” Everyone has come across someone whose speech regularly includes, “fuck this, fuckin’ fuck that, fuckin’ whatever fuck” throughout every conversation they have. I actually have someone living in my basement like this, so I’m intimately familiar with this behaviour. (No, I can’t just get rid of him. I gave birth to him.)  When writing such a character into a novel which you hope will come out as a literary masterpiece, how do you balance such a character’s dialogue? It’s a toughie. Same as with what I call “ummers”–people who say “um” after every third word. There ARE people who do this, it’s true. But try reading it – it’s annoying!

Have you ever come across characters in stories where this sort of dialogue was handled well… or not?



Real conversations in my house 3/21/15

Chris: Mom, where are you?

Me: (calling) I’m in the washroom.

Chris: (a few seconds later, right outside the door. singing) Do you want to build a snowman?

Me: I’m trying to pee.

Chris: (singing) It doesn’t have to be a snowman…

Me: Go away Chris.

Chris: Okay.