My Crazy Friday

So I went to Stockholm this Thursday to participate in some workshops and lectures for my journalism course. And when they were over, I simply decided not to go home.

I took the sub downtown and wandered around for a while in the rain and the increasing darkness of early evening. The otherwise so crowded streets were emptying and the stores and cafés were closing for the night. I found one that was still open, ordered a chai latte and settled down by a small table with a candle to write.

From the ceiling mounted speakers flowed the kind of music perfect for Moments. You know, those short islands of clarity in your daily life, that you know that you will remember for years to come. Maybe with envy because you are not there anymore.

The latte was also perfect, and the words flowed. Then, seemingly suddenly, the café closed and I was out on the streets again, wandering aimlessly. It was getting too late to catch a train back home anyway, so I looked up a cheap hostel that I checked into.

The Red Boat, just as the name implies, was a hostel contained onboard a red boat laying at anchor by the river winding through the city. The room was small but perfect, and I dumped my things there before returning to the darkening city streets. In want of my camera, my cellphone had to make due.

Stockholm’s windows glowed like celestial bodies in the night and the passing cars were that imagined sky’s comets and asteroids. A friend called me, one who knew I was in town and who wanted to meet. We ate and drank and then we went clubbing. My first time in Stockholm. I got to see light and smoke and people getting thrown out in the night without their jackets for no apparent reason. It was glorious.

Then remained to return, alone, to my small room and fall asleep while the city night and the flashing lights of police sirens fell through my curtains and painted the ceiling in blue stripes.

Now I’m sitting in that very same café again, a chai latte in front of me and a realization in my mind that for Moments to happen one sometimes has to step out of the secure, comfortable box that makes us take the train home directly after journalism classes. My own train home leaves in about an hour, so I guess it’s time to drink up the latte and savor the Moment before stepping back into the box.


Oh, and by the way: my word count is now 23341. And I don’t know what my computer was thinking with the tags on this post. I’ll fix it when I get back home lol. Over and out!

It’s past midnight, making it the last of Writober!

Oh. My. God. I’m on the final day of my Writober-challenge. Wowzers.

I won’t be going in for the kill (i.e. the final Writober text) until I have slept and eaten some breakfast, but I already know what it is going to be. If you have been following my writings this month, you might have noticed that my “On Blood And Dreams”-triplet hasn’t been concluded yet. The last day of my October Writing Challenge will see the final installment of that story as well. Hopefully.

Anyways, this has been a challenging and inspiring month. Sure, I have uploaded some older stories as well, but for the most part I have written a new text every day. I have used writing prompts from Reddit, dug up old ideas and let myself be inspired by music, life and not least other writers. I’d like to namedrop some of them here:

http://theaeolianharp.com/ is full of well written stories with interesting and inspiring concepts. The very name of the blog is magical, for heaven’s sake. You should pay it a visit.

http://wwocz.net/ is where I was first inspired to write about space, through one of several awesome stories found there. The blog’s author is also into archery and metal (my own drugs of choice), and has managed to talk me into giving NaNoWriMo another try this year.

https://songofion.wordpress.com/ is the blog of one of my IRL-friends who writes in Swedish and does so very well. If you know the language you should totally check it out. Its author has provided me with tons of encouragement and inspirational feedback throughout this month, and the short stories on the page are atmospheric, well written and engaging – especially if you’re into the Gothic and the dark paranormal.

During this month I have learned to be more effective and economic with words, to get to the point of a story without wasting the time of my readers and also to find ideas for stories in my everyday life. Another thing I have had to develop is a sense for planning ahead and using my time well – otherwise I would never have managed to combine working two jobs and doing two separate college courses with this creative writing challenge.

Thanks for all the feedback and support during this month, you have all been awesome!

But, as we say here in Sweden: “Don’t yell ‘hi!’ until you’re over the creek”. I still have one text left to write before I’m done with Writober. And then remains NaNoWriMo. Am I mad?

Anyways, stay tuned for On Blood And Dreams III!

Autumn Is Icumen In

So I sit here by my window and finally have to admit that summer is gone for this time. The leaves are yellow and I don’t feel bad for staying indoors anymore. That’s a sure sign.

I have three-day weekends now, meaning I work four days and then I’m free from Thursday night until Monday morning. It’s a beautiful week layout, since I don’t work enough to wear myself out totally, and then I have three days to do what the fuck I want until I have to go back to work.

That means a lot of writing, as you might have noticed. Currently I’m about a third into my Writober challenge to myself, where I have to upload at least one story every day to this page. This far I have succeeded, partly thanks to my stash of old texts that I can fall back on when I don’t have the time or inspiration to write a new one. Yesterday I put up a brand new text called The Silence of Her Voice, and today’s text is a humorous writing prompt response named Securing the Family Business.

Apart from these short stories, I’m working on my writing project in Swedish and that is going great. I don’t think I have much left to write there before I can go into the editing and cutting phase. I’m rather excited about finishing that project, since I´ve been working on it since late 2012.

I’m also writing a story together with a friend of mine, and I think it is turning out quite nice.

And last but not least, I’m doing quite a lot of academic writing as well. I’m currently trying to get a long thesis on Religious studies accepted for examination, and I’m also doing assignments for my journalism class. While working as a freelance journalist, of course.

I feel like I’m on a roll and I have lots of inspiration. I hope that feeling will hold all through this year, because I really want to pull all these things off. Now I’m going back to writing all of the things above. Have a nice day!

Writober 5th

OK, so I have this thing going. You may have noticed it’s October now. You may also have noted that I’ve been publishing one story a day thus far this month. I didn’t think about it myself until earlier today, but realized this is a pretty nice coincidence. So I will continue trying to upload one short story for each and every day of October, to see if I can pull it off.

I’ll call it Writober. I’m witty and funny, I know.

Some of the stories will be brand new, straight out of the proverbial oven. Others will be older texts that I have revised and reworked for this purpose. I bet you haven’t read any of them before in either case.

Feel free to follow me through my Writober. View it as a countdown for Halloween, if you will. I know people like Halloween – I sure do, at least. And if you want to join me in this October writing challenge, please let me know. I’d love to read your stuff!

Today’s text is “How to Write A Definite Bestseller” – a humorous text that’s not nearly as pretentious as the title makes it sound.

Friday Night

I could have gone out tonight, listened to a band and had a drink. Or two. But I didn’t. Well, the drinks I had, but from my fridge instead of buying them expensively in a bar. I have music at home as well, and I feel that I really – I mean really – need to calm down. The past couple of weeks have been stressful (albeit in a good way), and now I feel a bit jumpy. I need to land.

Two weeks ago I drove to Stockholm for a two-day workshop meeting with my journalism course. The next day I continued on my way to a place an hour or so south of there, to participate in a three-day LARP-game. Then I had a four hour drive to get back home, and the very next day I began my week of substituting as a cultural editor at the newspaper I write for. At the end of that week, I think I can say without exaggerating, I was spent. Luckily, I really like the job, so that’s okay. This last week I have been back  at my job as a high school teacher, and there’s never a shortage of stuff to be done there.

Phew.

Today I have spent writing. Two chapters have sprung forth for my Swedish writing project, and although they both turned out short I am really happy with the end result. I don’t know how much I have left to do on that text before it is finished, but I suspect it is less than I think.

I have also gone through some photo folders on my computer, and uploaded some of my favorite pics to this blog. Then I found a subreddit for short stories, and got stuck there for a good while. I posted a link to one of my own stories, sure. But in the process of doing so I also stumbled upon several great and inspiring texts from other writers. Some of them I will definitely get back to later.

Now I’m thinking about whether I should continue writing for a couple of hours, or if I should do something else. I’m yet not done with Darksouls 2, and I have a fresh novel by Nora Roberts waiting for me on my bed table. Hmm hmm, a tricky one. I’ll have to consider for a bit. Until i decide, I think I’m going to post another of my finished texts here as a separate blog post.

Stay tuned!

Oh, I just had to…

Did I mention I am working on a novel in Swedish? Well, anyways, I am.

And while writing some today, I decided to start the process of a chapter with a sketch (if you can call it that). I simply wanted to line up what was going to happen in the chapter before I got started writing it. The sketch, however, ended up looking almost like poetry. And while the project is in Swedish, I still felt I had to share this accidental poem in some way. So I translated it. Without context it makes little sense – but then again, must it really?

Here goes:

#13.53

Abstract illustrations of bliss.

More concrete plans for the night?

The present: a visit from A, starting to suspect something is wrong.

The truth hatches, a moment of realization and rational thought.

Then the world falls. Abstract again, emotions, metaphors.

Out. Some kind of poetic darkness to build atmosphere.

In the middle of this a phone call from the private place that is dark now.

The close is a promise and a gunshot. Decides, this must end.

On the floor in the room with all the pictures. Affected by memories, emotions and substances.

Disconnected thoughts between substantial dialogues where the answers don’t make any sense.

A dead bird outside the window. They take the bottles and the pills. Rage.

Wants out, but they calm him with sleep. Darkness.

Thursday night

So I’m sitting here, having just settled into my new home (read: blog). The walls have been painted and my name’s on the door. Now I just need to make it cosy, to make it me. And, of course, get some people over for tea.

I have been thinking about what would be the best place to start. Should I start uploading material like a maniac, making it my goal to throw my entire collection of texts in here as fast as possible? Or should I wait until some people have found their way here, and then put one text up at a time to give them space to breathe (the texts and the readers)?

I don’t even know how to get visitors to my new metaphorical home. Should I send invite cards? Should I host an online moving in party where everybody gets free online drinks? Should I bribe some shady critics to read my texts and give them astronomically good reviews? I think I just realized that I have no idea how to run a blog successfully. I wish I had someone to ask. But well, I have my cat and I have wine, and between those things and my god ol’ pal Google, I’m sure I’ll figure something out.

In the meantime, I guess I’m just gonna eat my chicken nuggets and be happy about the fact that tomorrow is my first day off for the weekend. Yum.

This is something new

Hi and welcome!

I have no idea how you have found your way to this site, but it’s wonderful you’re here!
This is going to become a combined blog and portfolio, but right now it doesn’t contain much. At the moment I’m just struggling with WordPress and learning how this theme works, and I don’t know when this site will be up and running for real.

I hope that you will return here in a while, when there is actually something to see here. Until then: may your tea be warm and may all your reading be fabulous!

/Christina