What’s Up Wednesday is a weekly hop/meme with four simple headings. Anyone can write a post and add the link to Jaime’s blog.
What I’m Writing
I’ve passed 516,000 words in my WIP, Journey Through a Dark Forest: Lyuba and Ivan in the Age of Anxiety, and am on Chapter 65, retitled “Funereal Newlyweds.” It was originally titled “Answering the Call,” but I felt it were better to move that title to Chapter 66, not only to make the chapter shorter, but also to keep the focus on Fedya and Novomira right before their less-than-joyous wedding, and during the approximately two and a half weeks they’ll have together before Fedya enlists. Novomira won’t see him again for four years.
My original notes/outline/plans from 2001, and ever after, had Novomira keeping mum about the fact that Fedya fathered a child with her, Feliks, before joining the Army. She didn’t want to make him worry even more about her, or miss this child he’d never met. It was going to be a huge surprise when he finally came home and discovered a 3-year-old son. Now I’m really rethinking that storyline. Why wouldn’t she tell him this to cheer him up and give him even more reasons to survive and come home?
I first conceived of Fedya back in ’93, and finally got to write him into existence in 2000 or 2001. It’s hard to believe the tiny baby who almost died at birth and again the next year is now 19 years old, a husband, and soon to be a father and soldier!
What I’m Reading
Primarily articles for my classes.
What Inspires Me
I’ve primarily moved over from listening to music on YouTube to Spotify while writing, while still waiting to bring over my record player and stereo. I’d only heard the original, lyrical version of this song once before adding the 2010 remastered, deluxe edition of their eponymous début album to my playlists. This song is like a religious experience, so strong and powerful. It’s got nothing in common with the better-known instrumental track except the title!
Also, Chapter 76 of The Tao Te Ching. It not only reminds me of one of my soon-to-be-officially-ex-roommate’s flaws, but also of the importance of the right balance of compromise and steadfastness. I’ve read this book so many times since first discovering it in January ’96, at age sixteen, and I always find new lessons and meanings in it.
One is born gentle and weak.
At one’s death one is hard and stiff.
Green plants are tender and filled with sap.
At their death they are withered and dry.
Therefore the stiff and unbending is the disciple of death.
The gentle and yielding is the disciple of life.
Thus an army without flexibility never wins a battle.
A tree that is unbending is easily broken.
The hard and strong will fall.
The soft and weak will overcome.
What Else I’ve Been Up To
I got an A on my first real paper (an annotated bibliography, technically) for Introduction to Archives and Records Management, a 95 on my second paper for Academic Libraries, and a 12 out of 12 on my first assignment for Organization of Information. Hopefully I’ll continue having straight As through the end of the semester.
I’ve been taking more photos lately, after not paying enough attention to this hobby for awhile. Lately I’ve taken some pictures of my food.
I bought these gorgeous, huge heirloom tomatoes at The Honest Weight Food Co-Op. Their stuff can be pretty pricey, but you get what you pay for. I have no intention of stopping shopping at larger grocery chains, but this is the place I have to go to for humanely-obtained eggs from nearby small farms. They’ve also got a huge variety of non-dairy products, lots of bulk grains and spices, and pick-your-own tofu in a big bin. I’m already used to paying a bit extra for non-dairy milk, cream cheese, and butter. Not a vegan yet, but I’ve primarily eaten a vegan or stricter vegetarian diet for years. I recently marked six years since I had my last taste of meat, though I still eat fish sometimes.
My favourite picture of the awesome eggs I got. Speaking of eggs, my ex-roommate’s remaining eggs are still in the fridge along with her other by-now-surely-spoilt food, never thrown out any of the times she’s been back here in the last month. I’m sure the eggs are rotten by now, given that they expired in September.
I thought I was making dippy eggs for breakfast, but they must’ve been on the flame a minute too long, since they had more of a hard boiled egg texture. They were dippier next time, but I’m still working on perfecting my technique. I only recently found out that “dippy eggs” is yet another Pittsburghese term I’ve been using my whole life without realising other Americans don’t use or understand that term. Hey, at least you’ll never catch me dead saying “yins”!