Tag Archives: star wars

Too Young To Be Bitter

My cat is fixated on something outside the window, but there is nothing there. It must be the ghost of my last university session – because I killed it. ‘Muthaaa Fuckaaa!’  – as the incorrigible Hank Moody would say.

Bring on the holidays! Yes, more opportunity to feel guilty about not accomplishing anything.

Well that’s not entirely true. I am slowly climbing the Karate ranks. I was given Arnis canes the other day to train with. And as I swung them around in my living room, I couldn’t help but make lightsaber noises in my head. I can tell I’m going to go far. I wonder if those new Star Wars movies are looking for extras? That was, after all, a long forgotten childhood dream of mine – to be a Jedi. My makeshift dressing-gown Jedi robe and blue cellophane wrapped curtain rod would testify to that.

Anyhow, I moved onto bigger and better dreams. To be a writer. Quite frankly, I think I’d have a better chance of becoming a Jedi. At least I’m realistic. Bitter, cynical, yes, but realistic.

Like that person in my class, who professed that writing should probably just be a hobby of hers, instead of a career path. I, somewhat guilty, agreed with her. I mean you’re not going to get very far if you’re already tearing down your own writing and telling everyone that it’s shit. That’s not part of the ‘Belief, Focus, Follow Through’ mantra I’ve adopted as my own. Sure I say stuff like: I’d have a better chance making a career of stopping the evil Sith from taking over the galaxy than writing, but that’s just acknowledging that it’s tough out there. And another thing, I’m not going to present a piece of writing to be scrutinized that I think is shit, then pout over the fact that it’s getting constructively criticised, making excuses of why it is the way it is.

“Oh, you meant to write in cliches? Pretty sure that only works if you’re making some sort of clever, satirical comment on the practice, and not just being a lazy writer.”

I’m guilty too! My last creative piece was heavily slashed of cliches and melodramatic writing, so I feel I’m qualified to recognise the error of such things.

I was once too filled with bright eyed and rather ridiculous notions of teenage romance, before I read Twilight and my gag reflex developed. Now I have a full blown cringe factor, especially for male leads who are ‘sensitive and very feeling’ and who bake cupcakes and wear flowers in their hair???

‘Does he also sparkle in the sun?’ I asked. Apparently not. But seriously, this is what young ladies fantasize about?

‘Oh, I get it, what you want in a guy, is a woman…’

That’s cool. There may be someone out there for you like that, but I wouldn’t hold my breath.

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16,314 Words of Mild Insanity.

Day 11 of NaNoWriMo: It’s a Sunday, and I feel like that’s some sort of milestone, being the end of the week and all. A perfect time to consolidate all that has happened in the month of November so far. But, in reality, this is the only day I haven’t felt an immense self-reprimanding guilt for typing words that are un-realted to my novel word count. However, this is important, I feel, to take stock, to see how far I’ve come, what I’ve learnt and to perhaps give myself a little pat on the back for managing to put something down on the page every single day – after all, it’s quite a surprise for someone like myself, a world class procrastinator and all round lazy sod to accomplish such a feat. I’ve seemed to gain some sort of rhythm, yet haven’t quite perfected the illusive ‘maintaining quality whilst producing quantity’ technique. I guess that comes with practice.

Here’s, however, what I have learnt. (Apparently not the difference between learned and learnt…is there a difference? One’s Brit. according to my dictionary. Hmm, learning something new everyday!)

Okay, one: rising levels of commitment  – in the beginning of my NaNoWriMo quest there was food, lots and lots of food. About ten million satay chicken sticks and Vita-Weets with butter and Vegemite, a product of intense, procrastinating hunger, and left over catering food from a wedding waitressing job. As the quest carried on there became less food. I love food, and I love dinner, so when dinner becomes a banana because you just have to reach your word quota for the day, you know you’re committed. Now, when you forget about your tea, steeping on the counter, left to go cold, perhaps you’ve taken it too far. Another sign of your rising commitment is the sore poky outie bits of your wrists that rest on your laptop, leaving you to type from above, like your on some sort of clunky, old school type writer.

Two: imaginative descriptions use up most of my brain juice – As you may have been able to tell from my incredibly knowledgable description of a certain part of my wrists, adjectives are not my strongest suit when it comes to writing. I’m not a very detail-orientated person, which is quite frustrating when you’re trying to create a scene from scratch that doesn’t exist on this planet. Why on earth did I decide to write Sci-Fi, anyways? Everything just ends up being silver and shiny. ‘Would they have concrete in the future, on a distant moon colony half way across the galaxy? Hmm, maybe not, perhaps I should just say it’s a concrete like substance, yes, that will do, I can’t waste precious time agonising over a made up building material…’

Three: Perhaps the literary community is right, when they say ‘write what you know’ – I don’t know anything specific about space travel, paramedics, the laws of physics, military hierarchies, the legal system or whether people would still tile their bathroom showers in the future, which leads me to digress that writing a story which requires much research is probably not the best thing when sticking to a strict schedule. Not to say that I have done absolutely none. I have bugged my Paramedic friend about the procedure of a chest decompression, and she’s probably a bit confused why I’m so obsessed with the specifics of the needle used – it’s just a needle. Ah, yes, but how exactly long is the needle, is it thin or thick, what colour is it, is it like a tube thing or a syringe thing? etc. Ah, that’s okay, just forget about it, we’ll fill that in later, along with another word for space concrete.

Four: The research can actually be more interesting than your story and distract you from your work – Upon realising that Sci-Fi, by definition, actually requires some fiction about science, I consulted the internet about long distance space travel and stumbled upon a genius fellow by the name of Michio Kaku. One reasonably priced Amazon purchase later and I was the owner of his books ‘Physics of the Future’ and ‘Physics of the Impossible’. What I remember from my high school physics class is a diagram of someone pushing a boulder off a hill and some mathematic equations like speed = distance/time (I’m not even sure if that’s right, shows how much attention I was paying). Anyways, if they taught physics in high-school, the way Kaku writes about it, I’m pretty sure I would have at least sat up with a keen interest and not endeavoured to drop the subject quicker than a south-shore Sydney teenager, in the 70’s, drops his girlfriend when she eats his meat pie (Puberty Blues, anyone?).  If any high-school physics teacher talked in terms of the possibility of death stars, lightsabers, force fields, laser guns and gamma ray bursts that can incinerate all life on Earth, I’m certain we’d see more future Leonard and Sheldons walking around the school yard. Because that shit is cool. And being smart should be cool. Why isn’t smart cool? Is it because all smart kids look like Leonard and Sheldon? Anyways, if you can find a way to slice through any material with a glowing hot, plasma sword, you should be rock star.

Five: When the 900 + words you’ve just written in half the time it would have taken to write that amount in your story, makes you kinda depressed, you know you must get out of the house and reclaim your sanity, just a smidgeon.

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So…you think you’re a cat.

I discovered, in the way imperial powers sail the world and discover new and foreign lands, Thai takeaway in the Uni plaza the other day. A welcome change to the usual meat and salad wrap that consists mostly of iceberg lettuce. I hate iceberg lettuce, it’s about as flavorsome as an iceberg and the most boring lettuce in the entire cosmos. Don’t even think about putting it in my wrap! Especially in one you call a Greek wrap. I’m pretty sure the Greeks did not have iceberg lettuce with their lamb Souvlaki. You’re cheapening my wrap experience. This is why Cashew Nut Chicken saved my lunch time.

I took my meal to a sunny little table amongst the trees that I had previously walked passed and sprayed all my mind juices on, that is, mentally claimed. I casually power walked to that table, throwing averted glances at all the passes by, internally hissing and raising my heckles like a territorial cat…raow. Luckily for them they stayed away from my table. I ate alone and when you eat alone by choice, you must feign busyness to avoid that glazed over look you may adopt whilst shoveling food into your mouth, staring into the distance, lost in your own thoughts. It appears kind of sad, even if in reality your just enjoying the serenity of the place. Ah, the serenity. So I started writing a future blog entry about the weather in Autumn, to which you might say: “Oh really? You must tell me more! Oh, please miss, I am ever so fascinated by the weather in Autumn.” And I would reply, “Don’t be a smartass. You will sit there and listen to another one of my rambling anecdotes about nothing.”

Because it’s that time of year again, when the air turns cool and crisp and the sun is prime for basking like a reptilian, soaking up those rays like they’re the giver of life itself. My friend once had a word for it – Salamander. Yes, he did compare me to a lizard and hopefully my penchant for lazy sun bathing was the only reason for it. They say that memories are highly triggered by scent and smell, so I figure that could be extended to feeling temperatures and changing climates as well. Because these months, April and May, have me reminiscing about the strangest things. This seasonal weather will never let me forget the feeling of going to see the most influential movie of my life for the very first time. Okay, I’m about to tell you what it is, but don’t groan, at the time I was in an obsessive teenage mental state where my favorite movie franchise and most recent movie star crush could do absolutely no wrong. However, I don’t really believe this sullies my memory as I’ll never forget the feeling of being completely blown away by… Revenge of the Sith.

It was on a clear, chilly late afternoon in May that I carried my stuffed Ewok under my arm and walked into that cinema with my big brother. And in walking out after it had finished, it was apparent that I had been profoundly affected. My brother and I talked about that movie more than any I’ve ever seen, or have yet to see – we discussed it the entire 40 minute ride home. Some may turn their noses up at the prequel Star Wars trilogy, but that shit (as in ‘the’ shit) ruled my childhood, man. From the time I was 8 years old, with a brief relapse in the ‘Attack of the Clones’ era, to total domination in High School, when I was 15, Star Wars was my obsession. The behind the scenes of ROTS made me want to make movies, which led me to studying film. Watching George Lucas and his crew do their thang, creating that fantastical world I was so enamored with, looked like so much fun, I just had to be a part of it. Later, I did realise that film making wasn’t all brainstorming about the appearances of alien creatures, playing with lightsaber props and building volcano sets – as the making of Star Wars probably wasn’t all about – but still the dream was shattered. So, I stopped doing film and started studying creative writing instead, because at least I can create fantastical worlds in my head. And maybe, if they’re awesome enough, they will be made into movies and I will be invited on set to play with prop swords and such and be involved in an exciting creative process.

Ah, what big ambitions I have. I feel like just giving myself a toy lightsaber and a pat on the head. Then I’d reply to myself, “Don’t patronize me woman”, and then I’d realise that a response like that warrants some heavy medication and a straight jacket.

The point is, as all my points are so resoundingly clear, that the greatest cinematic experience of my life, so far, was seeing that movie. As some may have felt watching A New Hope for the first time in 1977, I felt with Revenge of the Sith in 2005.

And, to be completely honest, it did help that I thought Hayden Christensen was the hottest thing in Jedi robes that had ever graced god’s green earth. Don’t hold it against me, regardless, the movie was still brilliant.

 

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