What I'm Up To

Or, if I wanted to be one of those people who refuse to end sentences with prepositions, I could say "That to which I am up." But that is the sort of English up with which I will not put. (Thanks, Winston.)

I just started a new book. Writing a new book, that is.

I just finished reading a book about depression in teenage girls (not because I'm only interested in depression in girls, but because that's what the book happened to be about and I couldn't find any others that were about depression but not for people with it,) and just started reading a book about war in Afghanistan. Both are research for the one I'm writing.

I've been reading about fifty cal machine guns and Javelin rockets. Very fun.

I also read my journal entries from age thirteen to twenty. That was interesting. What was more interesting was the poetry I wrote and tucked into the pages of my journal. An excerpt:

Beneath stones ancient druid-made
And round perdition's flames
My cries fall silent as they fade
And stars fall crying haunted names 
When Sirius burns overhead
While brightly Acrux shines
Then may the heavens find me dead
In snow among my Utah pines

I don't write much poetry these days. For me it's always been something that arises from very intense feelings—usually feelings I'd rather not feel.

I'm going to tell a story from inside the head of someone with severe depression, and I'm not sure how it will turn out. Who wants to read about depression? Most people don't even want to think about it. The funny thing about depression is that it has a logic all its own.

I ask myself why I want to risk writing a book no one will want to read. Somehow, it feels like I've been drawn into this, a little closer with each new story, and sucked into this one because I fell in love before I thought it all the way through.

My protagonists want to die, for cryin' out loud. Who can relate to that? More people than we realize, probably. But the story isn't about death. It's about what happens instead.


  1. I like stories with depressed characters. Which is why I've seen, hold it, *checks list*, 24 out of 40 Woody Allen movies. And the first book I wrote was about a depressed god. A god who wanted to die but, being immortal, could not. First-person. It was epic. It will be published one day, I tell you. (He may or may not have succeeded in killing himself.)

    So yes, I would read that book.

  2. Thanks, Jaimie. That's enough for me. Now that you mention it, there was a suicidal god in Warbreaker by Brandon Sanderson. Sort of. Then there's Thirteen Reasons Why, which is on my reading list. A quick search of the local library catalog shows several other books related to suicide. (One of which is a thriller about suicide bombers coming to America. *eye roll*)

  3. There was also a 'Voyager' episode about a suicidal god (Q). No relevance, just have to bring up Star Trek when I can. ;)

  4. Yeah, "Death Wish." / star trek nut.

    The actor who played Q, John de Lancie, wrote a book called "I,Q" that explored similar themes. But OMG, no one should ever read that book unless they're a hardcore Q fan, as I am.

  5. LOL! I didn't know you were a Star Trek nut, but it doesn't surprise me.

    Who doesn't love Q? I thought they kind of gutted him in some Voyager episodes, but Death Wish was one of the more interesting Q episodes of all time.

    If I own a big fat book of Q episode screenplays, does that make me hardcore? Or do I actually have to read it?

  6. See, you totally should have commented this the first time, because now I know you like Star Trek.

    And yeah, they destroyed Q. Destroyed him. Part of the reason I started writing was because I thought, "I could do that better."

    Ummmm...... I own that book too. Although I think I might have trashed it when moving out of my parents house. Maybe. (I hadn't looked at it in 4 years, couldn't rationalize owning it.)

  7. I mean, considering its size. Obviously I keep smaller books around that I haven't looked at in 10 years.

  8. Yes, just owning it makes you hardcore. Maybe not at the top of the "hardcore" range, but solidly in there. After all, you spent money on it!


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