dreaming

Late Night Writing

I have writer’s block, it’s late in the evening, it has been a long work week at the Salt Mines, and I’ve enjoyed an after work beer. I had today’s blog post all worked out but I changed my mind because it just wasn’t working for me. Instead, I’ll write about one thing or another, sorry, just kidding, I do have another bout of writer’s block, but we won’t let that stop us. Here at The Rusty Prose, we charge through these barriers, we turn road blocks into stepping stones, and we don’t put our wish bone where our back bone ought to be. I plan to accomplish lot of things done, but my system for planning always fails. I set the intent, and in doing so, I manage to get something done. At the very least, my typing has improved.

I, like a lot of people, have many frustrations in my day, mine is my blue collar job and all that it entails, so, I am writing this blog for a number of different reasons; to improve my writing, to compel myself to write on a regular basis, to garner a fan base, and, as an income stream. After I get my act together with this blog, I will get my Patreon page up and running. That would make two revenue streams, then after that maybe look into freelance blogging, as a third revenue stream. The idea is to get away from my penance at the Salt Mines, then move on to my literary fiction, which I quite enjoy writing.

More and more these days, more so now than ever, I have been dreaming, wishing, even pleading to be a stay at home writer, so, in a metaphysical sense, I think something positive is about to happen, or maybe I just have my hopes up. I am starting to feel, and notice, positive changes coming over me for my side hustle endeavor, as well as my day job at the Salt Mines. I do believe that I am turning a corner with both, as though one day this will all take off in a positive direction. I am motivated to stick with it, this blog, and my plans for other revenue streams.

I’ve been told, a few times recently, that I have been inspiring people, on twitter, in real life, and here on my blog. I don’t feel inspiring, but due to my Cancer situation, and my motivation to improve myself, I guess I’ve moved some people. I talk about my schedule, and how I make time to write, I have a blog, I have twitter and I know how to use it. I am networking well, I have my highs and my lows, lately I have been having highs on twitter, but lows on my blog. Today was the worst blog day, I had zero visitors, I’m exhausted and I have writer’s block.

I am in this for the long haul, I have been making some quickie little blog entries, mostly aimed at improving my writing, my prose and my typing. I am certain, that if I keep at this writing and editing and posting often, it will have numerous payoffs. The idea is, after I set myself free from the Salt Mines by supporting myself with three or four revenue streams, then I can, and will, begin working on all my rough wips waiting for my attention.

Interaction

I am an extroverted introvert, I love how that sounds, and what that means is, I am outgoing, can be quite gregarious, can address a crowd, even perform live in one capacity or another, but for a limited time only. I turn into a pumpkin quite early, I need to be away from people. Maybe not all people, the company of one or two more suits me just fine, any more than three can get under my skin. Even three other people is pushing it; I need to be alone for a while to recharge my batteries, or with someone who is patient enough to understand.

I have always been that way, since I was a child, I remember being in large groups of kids and not wanting to be the focus of attention, especially when it came to girls. My parents didn’t want to hear about it, my grandmother, a nurse, picked up on it. One fine day, as a seven year old, I asked her why everybody stares at me, people in cars all look at me as I would walk down the street, she told me to ignore them and to look the other way. I think she picked up on the fact that I’m also agoraphobic, which is another story all together.

I’m so old, I’m from a time when us children would got outside and play on our own or would walk for a mile to get to a friends house. Mostly I would just walk for a mile to nowhere, too many times I’d get to a friends house and there would already be half a dozen people there.

I like conversing with people on a higher level than simple small talk, i.e., the weather, sports scores etc. I find, if I try to go even just a touch deeper than the weather, say politics, business, or finance, most people don’t want to hear about it, so I am left making small talk with a large group of people in most of my day to day interactions either at work, or at school. It’s easy enough to find people with whom I can have a more meaningful connection with, but they don’t all understand the hidden introvert.

I guess that’s the key right there, the introversion is mostly hidden and disguised, and so people are quickly blindsided by an extroverted person shutting down in an instant for seemingly no reason whatsoever. It took me several years for me to realize I was doing that to people, I’m sure I’ve hurt a lot of my friends, acquaintances, and lovers that way. Conversely I’ve been hurt by introverts who don’t understand my extroversion.

It’s not that I don’t like people, though I may have uttered that phrase a number of times in my life, its more that I need to be alone for certain periods of time. I feel, post cancer and chemo, that it’s getting worse. There are other factors involved, those, and the cancer, will be further expanded upon in future blog posts, which you can always read here, at The Rusty Prose. So don’t be offended if one minute, I’m acting like your best friend in the whole wide world and the next minute, I’m contemplating being alone, reading, writing or watching a film or listening to music; you’re more than welcome to come along, just don’t ask me to go out to play with you and all your friends.

My Pet Insomnia

I am a life long insomniac, always have been, always will be. Started as a child; I would lay awake all night, tossing and turning, I did not know it was insomnia, I would complain to my parents but, to no avail. Ironically, if and when I would fall asleep I would inadvertently wet the bed. Hmm, I just went from talking about my insomnia to outing myself as a bed wetter. I loved Sarah Silverman long before she outed herself as a bed wetter. I wonder if she’s also an insomniac.

My insomnia was hard for me to understand as a kid, I would be flat out exhausted, but did not want to go to bed, then, as I would go to bed and snuggle under the covers, I would warm up and, … wait for it, I would wake up. Wide awake, so, I would read until I couldn’t see any more then I would toss and turn until just before dawn, then I’d fall asleep, and promptly wet the bed. Soon enough, everyone in the household would get up, after having a full nights sleep and expect I was the same. Nope. I was unable to get up in the morning, cold, soaking wet, and flat out asleep.

This went on until just before puberty hit, when I finally stopped wetting the bed. I was staying up later I’d watch TV then I’d read a book until late night and sometimes until early early morning. Back then, **old man voice**, we only had a few TV channels to choose from, no VCR yet, and the stations would shut off around Three AM. So I would be tired when I went to bed, I don’t remember having insomnia going through puberty, aside from staying up until Four in the morning.

Insomnia was still there for me as as a young adult entering the blue collar work force, perfect, just perfect. I was staying up too late, usually having beers with buddy, watching the hockey games, then laying awake all night until I would fall asleep, just before my alarm would ring. Not very healthy, but then I started getting jobs which required working graveyard shifts, I did that for many, many a year. Insomnia also works well during the day, especially with lawn mowers, city noises and people. Yep, insomnia was here to stay.

Over the years I would learn different coping methods. A few little changes can help, avoid looking at the clock, or even turning the light on. I know the tendency is to do exactly those two things, then start reading, going on-line or TV time. I’ve read, in a few areas, that it’s best to act as though you’re asleep, keep still, eyes closed, and do your best to not ‘think’. It’s hard to do, but with a little practice one can accomplish these little things.

Then along a came Cancer, Surgery, Chemo, and the whole kerfuffle that came along with them. I would sleep in fifteen-minute chunks, awake for four, then more chunky sleep for four. Those might not be accurate numbers, I’ll have to go through my notes, I may have written that info down.

Now, these days, my insomnia is different, I fall asleep as soon as my head hits the pillow, but then I’m awake after a few hours. I have no problem sleeping during the day but I prefer to be a day person right now, it’s working for me, although lately I’ve been wondering if I’d like to go back to being a night person.

The Forest inside the Trees

From where I sit, I see the forest inside the trees. There is life in there, I see life, I see love. It rolls, it moves, it tells a story. A green pulsing orb, breathing at me, towards me, into me. There is rot, there is litter, there is debris. Only now the trees look back at me, what do they see? Why have I only noticed just now? Are they replying to my love letters? Do they know I sit, and look inside them to see the forest?

I realize, I am only here for but one minute of their lives, oh how they can savour that one minute though. When they let me in, when they’ve invited me in for tea. When I have my invite of dusty bark, and mossy knots. I will accept with honour and grace, I will be so flattered as to be accepted into their ferny realm. I would give them my time, all my time, all but a mere fraction of their day, I would be theirs, I would give them my time.

What is my worth to them? Is my devotion enough? I am, without a doubt, not the only being to pay respect. I am flesh and bone, barely enough to fertilize one of their saplings. Why me, why now? They are looking at me, as though waiting for an answer? What answer can I give to them but to say yes? But, yes to what? What is the answer they are waiting for? They look upon me still, as though they’ve always been aware of my presence, but choose now to show.

I’ll pretend to know what they mean, much like, as a child, I could communicate with animals, they could read my thoughts, and were merely empathizing with me. The forest, inside the trees, is waiting for me, awaiting my arrival. I don’t need to think about it, they’ve sent the invite, I’d be a fool not to go. I can rest, rest and sleep along the grande cedars, their rotted ancestors covered in moss. I could sleep, and be nourished, in my nursery of greens and browns. I will communicate, I will talk, I will be, I will be one of them.

I will no longer sit and watch the love inside the forest, or watch the life in the trees, I will be there. I will be the forest, I will be the trees. I can be one of them, they see that in me, they know, now, I am one of them. I will go, I will be one of the trees, I will be the forest. I will pull the blanket over myself, I will wish and pine, for one, or two to disappear with me, but I will pull the blankets over myself alone.

Hobbies

I had mentioned, in an earlier post, about writing as a hobby, which I am currently working into my side hustle, and now wanting to pursue other hobbies. I have a passion for model rail, I like the steam engine era and I prefer wood burning over coal. I am nostalgic, I did grow up near a rail line but they were electric diesel, I’m not that old. I know that once my side hustle gains traction, after a lot of hard work, I will be able to start my model railway.

Writing was my main hobby and interest, with model trains running a close second. I have never had a set up, aside from a brief moment when I was a child, and a few years ago, when I got a cheap set for Christmas, which rekindled my passion for model rail. I did set it up and started to look into getting myself an adult set, I looked into modelling and building the benchwork for the layout, I’ve studied various layouts to see which would suit me best. But, as we all know, life gets in the way of life and so I am now train less, for now.

I have the room for a little N scale set up, I have the plans for my benchwork, I have a good idea for a layout, I just don’t have the time or the cash right now. I have spent the past several months making time for writing and I’m still adjusting to that particular change in my life. Much the same as writing, with the model rail, I will take it in slow baby steps, one day at a time, one step at a time. I know I said I have the room for a layout bench, but I need to de-clutter that area to make the room.

So I guess I can make myself a honey-do list and tick each item off when I have a spare minute.

  • Clear the space
  • plan ahead
  • make a materials list for the benchwork
  • price out the lumber & hardware for the benchwork
  • check and recheck the plans
  • select a small and simple layout
  • buy the supplies
  • build the bench
  • plan ahead for a larger expanded layout
  • buy the track, a small engine and some rolling stock
  • explore the modelling aspect of this hobby

There, I think we’ve simplified this for ourselves down here at The Rusty Prose. As I’ve said, I am currently using as much time as possible for my writing side-hustle, but one must have hobbies and interests, and as I work towards turning one hobby into my day job, I am prepping to create time for my new hobby. As a hobby, model rail is interesting because it covers a wide array of skills, there is carpentry, electrical, engineering, artistic design, realistic scale modelling, as well as research and development.

Nostalgia

Have you escaped from your past? I’ve been able to hide from mine, but there is no escape, no statute of limitations. Where are the people you have hurt, where are the people who have hurt you? Have they escaped their past, are they looking for you? What is inescapable? I’ve reunited with people, from my past, who have not at all been able to escape their past. As a matter of fact, though I do get nostalgic, I think I have moved beyond my past, but I know it lurks around behind me, somewhere.

I push myself when I am tired, I gain some ground. I have phobia’s, but as an extroverted introvert I do my best to be intrepid, within my physical means, and, post Cancer, I may not care so much any more about phobia’s. I am wondering if that is what this is all about, Cancer. Cancer changed me to a degree or two, there is no denying that fact. My Chemo treatments left a mark, but we do our best and we march forth, we carry on, as they say. We all tire in our own ways, I push my self, not to exhaustion, but through the tired.

I look at the trees, I long for the days of quiet solitude, days when there were more trees than people, no light or noise pollution, the smell of horses in the air. I only dream of fruitful and prosperous times. I am obviously not adverse to hardship, I just do not want my pipe dreams to be rife with strife. In my current state, I would most likely stare at the trees as I either starve to death, or I keep a large animal from starving to death. Am I nostalgic for Mother Nature?

When I was diagnosed with Cancer, I went home, had a beer, dialed up some music, some of the ‘get together’ party music from my past, the way way back time, and had a good cry. A few beers, some eclectic obscure music, and memories of all my rather enlightened cohorts, nostalgia. Many of whom were dead, married, disappeared, incarcerated, or otherwise. I was already nostalgic, but the spectre of death, ones life flashing before ones eyes, was quite the event. A few more beers were in order.

Looking back on my life, I, at times, had a lot of fun, and, at times, I did did not.

I notice, when people say they’d like to go back to a certain time period, they tend pick some idealistic, or ideal, epoch, but they might not take into consideration that the hard times were usually austere times, not so much fun. I have an ideal time, and maybe a few settings, but I’ll save those for my pipe dreams.

Music, music in general, always takes me back. I don’t need, or even want a time machine, although that would be a riot unto itself. While physically going back in time has its appeal, I do like our ‘now time,’ our current present tense, with instant access to any music I love, any time I want, I use that as my time machine, music feeds and nourishes my nostalgia.

Humping your Hot Dragon

Okay, here is another gem I found in my files, I hadn’t dated it but it seems like I wrote this only a few months after my final chemotherapy treatment. I was obviously still in pain and reeling from the side effects of the chemo. Once again I have no recollection of writing this, so, without further ado, here it is in it’s raw form. Here at The Rusty prose, we’re unsure where I was going with this, perhaps I’ll revisit this and turn this into something awesome to read.

 

Humping your Hot Dragon

Hot, it was so hot. He picked up the Dragon which immediately set about blowing balls of fire before them. The dragon was so sick but refused to admit so. They had set out early in the morning to avoid the heat, but the birds had warned the sun so the sun had come up earlier that day and was none too happy about the birds waking it up so early. He had been warned about his sick dragon, but as he usually did when people told him about his sick dragon he just laughed it off.

He had, as was his usual, awoken so early as to be the one to waken the neighbourhood. His neighbours had oft complained that while he liked to get up early, the entire neighbourhood did not share his enthusiasm for his hobby of choice. This morning he awoke with an unusual fear; he had been having the oddest dream about trying to line up two or three islands in an archipelago, but they wouldn’t line up and one of them erupted as in a volcanoes creating a fourth island which still wouldn’t line up properly. He stopped trying to interpret his dream, realizing that the gist of his dream seemed to tell him he was frustrated by something.

He was now a recluse, but I suppose by society’s standards he was a pariah, due to the sick dragon. He didn’t even know he had a dragon, some people tried to point it out to him be he was too preoccupied. He tended to be able to only have on single focus, no multi-tasking for this guy.

When confronted by the yoga team, the dragon changed colour and set about inhaling as much air as possible. Dragons at filtering out the oxygen and hydrogen to use for its flame throwers. The battles were epic, some raging for years, entering different time zones as well as different planes of this world.

All too soon he lost track of the time, this particular trek the they had encountered more of the yoga people, who seemed to be on their side. The anti-yoga people had converged on them and now were using the dragon against him. The heat from the dragon was unbearable, so focused to a fine point as though the dragon was enjoying itself. The yoga crowd had jumped on him and were now trying to pull his head so down and forward so as to be standing with his feet on his own head.

This was a problem he thought would never be solved. It was in his nature to do things the wrong way. The heat had cooled off; Mother Nature abated the wars with her cool marine air. The dragon, now cured, healed and cooled was soon gone, leaving the young man to clean up the mess, explain everything to the authorities, as well as go back to his job.

Working Hard to make Writing my Side Hustle

I am working towards this end. Sorry, this is not a ‘how-to’ blog, right now it’s a ‘how I am currently doing it and here are all my mistakes’ blog. I enjoy writing, as a hobby, and an interest, but now that I am ramping up my writing time, word count and projects, I need to pursue my other interests and hobbies. Soon enough, once I become a millionaire from writing daily fragmented thoughts, I will be able to embrace my other hobbies. So, any minute now, I will become an overnight sensation. As much as I’m happy to have a well paying non-writerly job, I would like to make writing my side hustle.

I am creating a habit of writing daily. I have several writing projects on the go, and now I have this wonderful blog. Thanks to this wonderful blog, I have carved out an extra hour per day, every day, to write. I am currently averaging five hundred words per day in about thirty to forty-five minutes. My typing is improving quite well, though I am making some good spelling mistakes as of late. Writing five hundred words daily has changed my day for me and I feel great that I’m devoting more time to this.

I am a long way from doing anything freelance, so for now I need to take it slow, I am happy enough to keep writing this blog. I am working on a short story that I need to finish the first rewrite. I have a number of Nanowrimo’s sitting in first rough that are on my list of things that need my attention sooner than later. I have a number of poems, two of which I’ve posted on here. Never say never, but I am not yet ready to freelance or anything of the sort, and so, for now, I’m happy with hanging out here at The Rusty Prose.

Life keeps us all busy in one form or another, and I have busied myself right up with tackling all these projects, dealing with a full time non-writerly job, and, of course, life itself. I don’t have kids so I don’t know how parents manage to have any time for themselves. Now that I’ve carved out an extra hour out of my day for writing I’d like to look into carving out more time devoted solely on writing. For now, that will have to be weekends, which are already full and they go by so fast.

I battle fatigue, I work full time, as well as making more time for writing, so I do need to watch that I don’t burn myself out. I have to keep the enjoyment factor in play, the always learning factor is always in play, and, of course, keep on top of the quality. I’ll get my short stories dusted off, edit and rewrite them, then sell them for a million dollars each, that will move this side hustle along pretty good I think. I get tired just thinking of how rich I’ll get with my new side hustle.

Climbing the Walls

A Cancerous tumour ate into my Humerus bone causing it to break. This was many years ago, that aspect is well behind me know. I had surgery, there are now two steel plates, several pins, and numerous screws embedded into my Humerus. I underwent a few years of therapy to get my arm back into functionality. I can now make a fist and raise it over my head in triumph.

I spent several months doing yoga. I did the Bikram’s hot yoga. They have several challenges to get people to practice yoga on a daily basis. I took the one hundred day challenge, well, I went one hundred and one days. It’s quite the feat even for a healthy individual. That three months of daily hot yoga practice did wonders for my body, my psyche, and my arm.

After the one hundred day challenge I hit the pool and gym with a personal trainer. We worked together to get my entire body back into shape and to get used to moving around doing different types of exercises. The yoga was fantastic, it also got me moving, worked on my endurance etc, but it’s good to change things up for your mind and body to adapt to new situations. Working with a personal trainer was also beneficial to my over all rehabilitation programme. All the while I was also going through physiotherapy.

During my ordeal, while I was dreaming of being able to become left handed again, to regain the use of my left arm, and to get back to normal I had considered adding rock climbing to my then future rehabilitation programme. I had a bigger, extended vision of my rehab than the people in my life at that time and was told to take it one thing at a time; obviously we do need to take these things slow and one step at a time, but I like to plan ahead. As I was planning and scheming, a local high school opened a climbing gym. It was fate yelling at me loud and clear.

So, a few years later after Chemo, no more Cancer, all healed up, yoga’d and all rehabed, and with my strength and energy building up I took up wall climbing. I love it, it’s fantastic. I’ve been at it for a couple years, I only do it part time as it really takes up a lot of my strength and energy. Yes, it does add strength and energy, but I need to keep it low and slow to give my body time to adapt. There are teen clubs in there, and, in watching them, I’ve gained so much knowledge and have improved greatly. I have a fantastic climbing partner but he’s only available at certain times; he has kids and a life.

Once again we are quite pleased with ourselves here at The Rusty Prose. On day my arm almost falls off, the next thing I know I’m laid up for a long period of time, and now I’m pulling myself up a wall with said arm. Oh, by the way, did I mention my crippling Acrophobia? that’s right fans, I also suffer, and I do suffer, from fear of heights. it’s all about mind over matter. My body doesn’t seem to mind that I’m climbing a wall with an arm that had previously come loose, and my brain doesn’t seem to mind that I willfully clamber twenty feet up into the air. Twenty feet may not seem like much to you, but it’s plenty enough for me. I’ve faced my fears and my so called disability and have conquered them.

I didn’t actually conquer my fear of heights, it’s still there, I’ve found a way to work with it and around it. Believe me, there are moments up on the wall when I freeze up, or, at the very least, question my sanity. I’m not disabled, but my arm sits funny and I don’t have 100% mobility, but my strength is returning. I don’t consider it a disability, especially once I get to the climbing gym. I can’t have a bad day at the climbing gym, the fact that I’m using that arm to pull myself up a wall is quite the victory for me.

Did you hear that?

Sheep mowing the fields.

Frogs mucking out horses stalls.

Old dog day at the Vets.

Rabbits harvesting new asparagus sprouts.

Hummingbirds selling flowers on the roadside.

Horse manure. Fresh mowed grass. Dying cedar. Thirsty ferns

Ash from the wood stove.

A pile of Wool blankets.

Boots and heavy coats.

Finches and twigs.

New born Twin Fawns.

Open windows and doors. laughter. Socks and light frocks. Smiles.

Ducks tending gardens.

Ravens cleaning house.

Daffodils passing the torch.

Sleeping Fungi.

Sodden moss.

Abandoned wood piles. Burbling water. Leaves unfurling. Wispy clouds.