My Whole Expanse I Cannot See…

I formulate infinity stored deep inside of me…

Archive for August, 2014

Tattoo #79

August 21st, 2014 | Category: Life,Opinions,Tattoos,Thoughts on Books
Tattoo by Kyle, Doc Dog's Las Vegas Tattoo, Ybor City

Tattoo by Kyle, Doc Dog’s Las Vegas Tattoo, Ybor City

So, this tattoo, number seventy-nine, doesn’t follow my usual leanings toward song lyrics. Instead, I went with a book quote, a not-so-not-lengthy book quote. It’s from the last paragraph of Dermaphoria by Craig Clevenger. If you haven’t read either of Clevenger’s books. The Contortionist’s Handbook, Dermaphoria, you’re really missing something., they’re gorgeously sad books. I’m not at all ashamed to admit that the end of Dermaphoria had me crying at 4 am. Anyway, this is definitely my largest tattoo, it covers pretty much my entire right side. It’s there and almost nobody will ever see it outside of this post, but that’s not the point. It’s a memory made external, one that affected me so deeply that I want to physically carry it with me.

Again, since I’m running really low on space, it’s kind of awkwardly placed. It reads…

“…and in the moment

before the angels turn

off my universe, God’s

own clock quicksand

slows to an ice

whisper quiet and I

could sit here beside

you and watch the

twilight wither for

days on end.”

I don’t want to give away anything about what the words mean in the context of the book, but in the context of me…

No passage in any book has ever felt so familiar.

I was with someone I love, and we were lying together watching gorgeous twilight fade away, and I never wanted it to end. I never wanted to be without her, ever. Not ever.

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August 20th, 2014 | Category: Life,Opinions

So, I wrote this flash story, and I feel like it’s something different, like it’s one of the better things I’ve written. I’ve been tweaking it from a draft to something more like a finished story. I’m not sure what I’m going to do with it yet, I’m still mulling things over. I don’t know why, I just feel really good about it. We’ll see.

I caught up on some e-mail… I’m really trying to be more productive. I’ve just been really nervous, like, all the time. I can’t get used to my new space, I don’t feel right here. It’s like, no matter how bad everything else felt, at least I had my room. I felt safe there, and it was mine. I picked the paint, the artwork, every piece of furniture, and everything was exactly in its place because I had it placed so. I built it with Celeste and Steven and Sarah and Katherine and Stacy, some of my best assistants, and some of my closest friends. They’re all far away now, but in that room they felt at least a little closer, and that felt good.  I made love to… Fuck it. What’s done is done.

Anyway, I’m reading these total cotton-candy books, light and fun, and no substance. I mean they’re not badly written trash, but they’re definitely not art. They’re based in the world of Diablo, a video franchise that is actually really spectacular. The games aside, the lore that’s the foundation of Diablo is intricate and well-realized, there’s plenty of material for decent fantasy writers to put out lots of fun books. Diablo’s been around since I was in high-school, and nerdy it may be, I’ve been a fan ever since. Technology has finally caught up to how detailed Diablo’s story is, so now we have gorgeous visuals that are fit for the story. For me, Diablo’s draw has always been the story. It’s set in a dark fantasy world in which angels and demons wage war against each other in the pits of Hell and at the very gates of Heaven, both sides using humanity for their own ends. It’s a world of powerful mages, humble warriors, once Holy Orders of Priests corrupted by demons offering immortality. It’s not Faulkner, but if you’re able to quote Faulkner, you can get away with reading a few Diablo books.

Okay, enough of me.


My goal so far

August 19th, 2014 | Category: Life

So, I’ve kept to my word count goal of 500 words per day. This post aside, today I hit 740, but they’re not quite ready for their coming out party,they need a little extra finishing.

I’m tired right now, and uneasy.

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August 18th, 2014 | Category: Life,Opinions,Thoughts on Writing

I subscribe to this blog, Ingrid’s Notes, she’s a writer, gives tips on craft and what-not. Today’s post was from a guest blogger trying to hawk someone’s book about how writers can boost their output to 10,000 words per day. Aside from that being deranged, the physical act of typing 10,000 words would take me most of 24 solid hours. I’m not buying that book. Still, the post was actually really… eye-opening.

The first half of the post discuses various writers’ average daily word counts. Stephen King puts out around 3,000 words per day, which is doable, but brutal. Ann Rice slams down around 5,000 words per day, totally out. Besides, the merits of monster word counts are debatable. Some say, if you’re putting down tons of words, even if they’re mostly trash, you still had a good day. Others would call such a day a waste of time, and it’s better to tighten your craft and focus on solid writing. I don’t really think there’s any right or wrong thought on word counts, it’s up to the writer and what feels best to them.

Personally, I’ve always been best at saying the perfect thing in as few words as necessary. So, what really drew my interest was one particular writer’s average daily word count, Hemingway. Ernest Hemingway averaged 500 words per day. Like his work or not, Hemingway is immortal, a writer whose name will live on forever, because ultimately, writing isn’t about word counts or unit sales, it’s about the quality of craft, of a finished story. If Hemingway secured immortality with something around 500 words per day…

Why can’t I? I know that if I create a daily routine and just fucking write, I can do 500 words easily enough. I’m no Hemingway, but I know I don’t suck either.


Tattoo #78

August 17th, 2014 | Category: Life,Opinions,Tattoos,Thoughts on Music
Tattoo by Colt, Doc Dog's Las Vegas Tattoo, Ybor City

Tattoo by Colt, Doc Dog’s Las Vegas Tattoo, Ybor City

So, this tattoo, my seventy-eighth, is from an Elliott Smith song, Pitseleh, off of one of my favorite records, XO. It’s a wrap-around tattoo that’s pretty much impossible to photograph. I’m pretty much out of flat open spaces, so my leg had to do.

It reads:

“They say that God makes problems just to see what you can stand before you do as the Devil pleases… Give up the thing you love.

No one deserves it.”

To me, the lyrics are saying, it seems like God pushes, and pushes, and pushes, until you break and make decisions that make life even worse.

The last few years have felt like this, but I don’t literally believe it’s God’s fault that absolutely everything in my life has gone to Hell. Really, sometimes bad things happen for no reason, and sometimes when life turns sideways, we break, we make bad decisions, and our own stupid decisions wreck our desires. It’s not my fault the state of Florida destroyed my independence, nor is it my fault I had to move and leave the room I spent nine years crafting, but it is my fault I lost the woman I love. Bad things happen, we have a vast capacity to make everything worse. God doesn’t go around sticking it to people. Still, I think that that’s something people of faith worry about, especially we with Catholic backgrounds, though not practicing. We wonder, My life is shit. Does God just hate me? I’ve had the thought often enough, when it seems like life goes the opposite of all my prayers. Tivoli once wrote me, after I died but didn’t, and I was scared of losing Sara, “I still don’t believe God hates you, but I’m beginning to think He likes fuckin’ with you.” God hating me has always been just one of my host of worries, but not a belief (usually).

So, why the tattoo?

Because I think the words are beautiful and I like having them with me. Because if I manage to dig out of the hole I’m in, the words will remind  me of how deep the hole was, how far I had to dig to find someplace beautiful again.


If I…

August 16th, 2014 | Category: Life

If I post nothing of substance tomorrow, I’m quitting the blog.


No difference

August 15th, 2014 | Category: Life

Tonight was supposed to be so good, and turned out so astonishingly bad.

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I know…

August 14th, 2014 | Category: Life

So, I know I guaranteed a real post, but the day wouldn’t allow it.


Boring doesn’t capture…

August 13th, 2014 | Category: Life

Today was very long, and very dull.

Tomorrow I guarantee better writing.

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Robin Williams

August 12th, 2014 | Category: Life

There are lots of stories in which celebrities are… unkind. Robin Williams wasn’t that sort of celebrity. I met him once, outside of the Late Show, it was only a few seconds. We were both going into the side-entrance, both of us guests in very different ways. He was very kind, but very quiet, the opposite of his on-stage persona. He said it was great to meet me, gave me a European kiss on the cheek, and was off to do the show.

I remember his eyes most, there was fierce intelligence, deep warmth, and just a shadow of sadness. I could see that hint of sadness.

I’m sorry he’s gone.


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