katernater: (investigate ✖ the enigmatic.)
Ahhh, a (mostly) lazy Sunday. Todd and I woke up early (well, earlier than usual for a Sunday) and drove out to the theater to see "Shutter Island". It was pretty good. I'd need to see it again to pick up on all of the little things I missed, but it definitely a good movie. Afterward, we stopped at Target so I could get a card for [livejournal.com profile] makemerun (she had her baby! Ahhh!) and then went back to the apartment, where Todd made baked chicken coated with Panko breadcrumbs and some really excellent homemade garlic mashed potatoes. Om nom nom.

I finished all of my assignments for the upcoming week and now I've got the rest of the evening to spend as I wish.
'Really had a hankering to watch classic episodes of The X-Files lately, so I might do that. Todd's at the movie store right now trying to find White Noise 2, which I want to see because I found out that Nathan Fillion's in it. We'll probably pack it in for the night: Todd with homework, and me what whatever frivolities I can stir up for myself.

How was everybody's weekend?
katernater: (janney ♕ crazy like a fox.)
FIRST:

"I have very few hard and fast rules. One of them is not to have sword fights in the morning with Rahm Emanuel."

-- Rep. Anthony Weiner (D-NY), in an interview on Fox Business Network, referring to former Rep. Eric Massa's (D-NY) naked confrontation with the White House chief of staff.

I have a love affair with this administration for all the wrong reasons.

SECOND:

I might have had one of the best meals of my life tonight. The Saudi student I'm tutoring, Shuruq, invited me over for dinner at her apartment. I'm not exactly sure what the names of the dishes were, but there was plenty of rice, chicken, vegetables, and cucumber salad and now I'm stuffed. One of the most wonderful things about the graduate program at Valpo is the number of international students in it who, hand to god, put American hospitality to shame. I couldn't remember if it's Saudi culture in which you're supposed to finish everything on your plate, or leave a little on it as a courtesy. Even so, I did not refuse the second (or third) helpings that my hostess offered. I told her that I would have to cook for her next time, and I think I will try to make tabuleh, like my mother used to make. I figure that it's the least I can do to repay her for her kindness.

She's also adamant that I should take a job in Saudi Arabia after graduation. There's a company over there, Saudi Aramco, that offers lucrative positions for Americans who teach English to Saudi businessmen. They provide a house, a stipend, and benefits a-plenty. There are also opportunities, she said, for Todd to teach elementary-aged children on the Aramco campus. I think it would be a wonderful adventure to go there, maybe for a year or two, while Todd and I are still young and relatively debt-free. Shuruq told me she thinks I have a real chance of getting a job there, especially after I receive my TESOL certificate in the Fall. I would hate to be so far away from my family, but it is definitely something to consider at this point.

THIRDLY:

I HAVE AN NCAA BRACKET. Yes, you read that right: the girl who doesn't know the first thing about basketball has put all her eggs in, well, one basket, and is banking on Kentucky to sweep the tournament. Todd has a bracket, too, and we're gonna' compete against one another once games start up tomorrow night. Loser buys the winner dinner wherever the winner wants to go. Todd picked OSU to win the whole shebang and I told him that, if they pull it off, I'll pay for airfare to New York City to buy him a cupcake dinner at Magnolia Bakery. That's how confident I am that OSU's not gonna' make it to the championship game.

FINALLY:

Happy St. Patrick's Day to everyone who celebrates it! Todd's at work tonight, so he and I will not have a chance to go out, but we've got a case of Harp in the fridge for later. Everyone have fun and be safe!
katernater: (lost Ω what kate does.)
Sweet sassy molassy, I am sore. Todd and I went to the Flogging Molly concert in Indianapolis and I think it's safe to say that I haven't jumped around that much in a long time. My body is not used to all that white girl flailing. The concert was awesome; they played all the old standards and did "Seven Deadly Sins" for their encore. Security was srs bznz, so there was no moshing or crowd surfing, which was fine by me. Like I said, I did the "one man pogo stick" thing to my satisfaction.

Last week was pretty epic. I was home from last Tuesday 'til this afternoon and I got a chance to catch up with one of my oldest, dearest friends while I was in town. We hadn't seen each other since sophomore year in college and it felt like very little time had passed at all. It's great to know that, while some things change, there are constants in life and sometimes -- if you're very, very lucky -- they happen to be the people you know.

Todd's dad is my go-to guy when I need the oil changed in my car, and he was gracious enough to give Partypants a once-over while I was back in town. (I had driven 11,000 miles since having my oil changed last which is, apparently, not such a swell thing to do.) He also saw that the tread on my tires was shot to hell (the diagnosis of which, I am told, involved putting a quarter into one of the treads and seeing if the rubber did or did not reach George Washington's nose hair or something) and so I got a fresh set of tires as a gift from my parents. They also bought me a new hubcap, which was really terrific of them. I could definitely feel the difference in the ride, before and after, which might just have been me trying to sound like I knew what I was talking about when it came to cars. Because, duh, 11,000 miles.

One week of Spring Break left. I'm going to be working on take-home exams, oral presentations, graduate research, and trying to make it through Beloved without eating my hat over how gorgeous Toni Morrison's prose is and how I wish, wish, wish I could write like her someday.

I owe some of you RP tags. I promise, once I take a couple of Aspirin and soak my muscles, I'm yours.
katernater: (sexy ♜ call me kitten.)
'Came home from a tutoring session to find a half dozen roses waiting for me.

Valentine's Day is a terrific, terrific institution.
katernater: (friends (rdj) // Displays of affection)
Anyone who knows us is well aware that Todd and I are huge movie buffs. Todd's a walking encyclopedia of film knowledge and trivia and he's seen pretty much every movie you can name (relatively speaking, within the last twenty or so years). With the passing of the decade (well, not technically), we've decided that each of us will come up with a list of our Top Ten Movies from 2000 - 2009. Then, we'll sit down and watch one movie from each list every couple of days, or as schedules permit.

I've got to tell you, it's fun coming up with a list. It's like secret ballots.

I'll share my list with you guys as soon as I vet all the candidates.


My Top Ten of the Decade -- and the honourable mentions )
katernater: (music (b) // We got a time bomb)
So, I guess, technically I should have said that I was almost done. I've got a final tonight, but I don't think it really counts because it's essentially a critique of the course. We have to choose two books from the syllabus and defend retaining them for future versions of the class. I assume this will be relatively easy because, uh, I'll be defending books the guy already put in the syllabus. Plus, he sent a note around telling the class that we could go ahead and do the paper from the comfort of our own homes and e-mail it to him when we're finished. This works to my advantage for two reasons:

1. I don't have to drive twenty-five minutes to campus at night, and
2. Wearing pants during the exam is not compulsory.

Todd's been away at home for the last few days, which means that I have been living a very sparse lifestyle -- very little makeup, no shoes, chocolate muffins for dinner -- and making ridiculous choices about which movies to watch (running Labyrinth viewing count: 3). It'll be good to have him back. The theater in the next town over is doing Mst3k's Christmas Rifftrax tomorrow, which we're gonna' go see. Oh! And remember the apartment we went to last week? The one that had been rented out the week before we got there? Well, Todd got a call yesterday and the guy canceled! Todd and I are going in tomorrow morning to fill out the application. I'm really hopeful for this place: it's in a great location (about five minutes away from campus), we get a student discount, and there's a fireplace.

Photobucket


Also, I felt very accomplished this morning when I successfully navigated a Russian-language download site in search of the new Seabird album. So, now, I'm either downloading the album or an application for a mail-order bride. Either way -- amusement abounds!
katernater: (smart (snl) // In the pursuit of science)
Todd and I have always had a problem with photographs. Namely, the lack of them in our relationship. For the first year that we were together, there was absolutely no photographic evidence that we had ever spent more than fifteen minutes in the same room.

We're trying to get better at it. )
katernater: (dw (d) // Fascinating new thing)
Things are wonderful and stressful right now (Wonderfully stressful? Stressfully wonderful?) but I've got a real, hard-wired sense of accomplishment about the things I'm doing. I met with my ESL students on Wednesday. There are about nine of them, all Spanish-speaking, all at different levels of language fluency. I was really nervous going into the meeting because 1) I've never taught anything to anyone before and, 2) I always think it's wonderful to be asked to do something, but tend to get really anxious about actually doing it. I start teaching next Wednesday (happy birthday to me!) and I've got the weekend to come up with a really slammin' lesson plan.

(Maybe I'll teach them that you should never use the word slammin' in a sentence. Unless you're a in a Tennessee Williams play and are referring to the act of forcefully shutting a screen door.)

All of the graduate assistant stuff is going well, too. I'm on campus every day, happiest when I feel involved. And man, am I involved. 'Feel like I should get my own cot next to the English department copy machine.

AND. All of this extracurricular (and resume-padding) activity means that I have decided to put in my two weeks' notice with Hallmark. I just can't carry all three parts of my schedule -- classes, research and teaching -- and make time for Todd and work retail over the Christmas season. I'm not making fantastic money with the teaching and the research, but, combined, it's more than I've been getting working at Hallmark, so I figure I should cut the extra weight.

I am not going to miss it.

Also, I've become pathetically, cripplingly, embarrassingly concerned about the flu. I know this summer was the Summer of the Swine, but CNN has done nothing to allay my fears about all kinds of Super Flus out there, waiting for me on every door handle, handrail and Starbucks cup. My mom bought me this surgical handsoap, Hibicleans, that's supposed to kill 99.9% of germs for up to six hours. Every day I sit next to people with rattling coughs, until the whole room is filled with sounds like sheet metal being put through a thresher. I just want to shrink in my chair. Eaaaauuugh. The university is offering flu shots for a nominal fee, but I'm reluctant to get one because I've heard that those things can produce side effects in some people that are worse than the flu they're trying to prevent. Is anyone else thinking about getting a flu shot? Have any of you actually sprung for one? Please tell me that it's all right to come out of my apartment without a face mask. (Which, I've heard, are in danger of being in short supply this winter, too. WHAT THE HELL, PEOPLE?)

And speaking of medical mysteries, they've turned 'House' into a video game. Todd and I were speculating on what kinds of features were going to be involved and we came up with some pretty fun ideas that will probably be more interesting than the actual game. Like, there should be an "Opiate Meter" that goes up and down, depending on how many palmfuls of Vicodin House takes over the course of the case. More Vicodin mean a happier diagnostician. Fewer mean that he shaves your eyebrows while you're sleeping. And if House has to banter with Cuddy in order to get a wild, out-of-the-box test for his patient, you should have the option to insult her A) Breasts, B) Ass, or C) Glaring administrative incompetency, in order to get what you want.

I wonder if Foreman will still be boring in the video game. Probably.
katernater: (cuddy (s6) // A different species)
Oh my gosh, this weekend was wonderful. I got to see my family, roll around my old haunts with Todd, and the shoes -- my god, you guys, I forgot how absolutely terrific the process of shoe shopping can be. My parents bought me a good pair of boots for the winter, a new pair of suede slip-ons and a pair of fur-lined slippers that are absolutely impractical and unnecessary but that feel awesome on my feet and give them that kind of "Hugh Hefner" quality that is so en vogue. I was also given a new vacuum cleaner for my birthday which -- shut up -- was totally the highlight of the whole shopping trip.

Other than shopping, I pretty much just hung out with my family the whole weekend. They're really terrific people. I got a little research done and I gave in to all of my girly sensibilities and watched two discs of the first season of Once & Again because, hello Sela, and also because I forcibly removed myself from watching/eating/doing anything "highbrow" the whole weekend. (Because there is nothing at all intellectually redeeming about watching pretty people have pretty problems.)

I did lunch with my aunt before I came back into town this afternoon. It went better than I expected. Actually, I didn't expect anything to come from the meeting. I didn't want to put a spin on it, positive or negative. But I knew going into that restaurant that I wasn't a little girl who could be pushed around anymore, or made to feel bad about, well, feeling anything at all. That's why I think I was so open to meeting with her now as opposed to three years ago. I'm a lot more comfortable in my own skin than I was; I'm finally comfortable with the fact that I will not please everyone, and that not everyone will please me. It is what it is. Nothing else. To her credit, my aunt seems genuinely regretful for how things have gone down over the last few years, and I was able to articulate my feelings in a way that wasn't hostile or too wimpy. It was kind of like, "Well, that's done. What's next?" I think we're all ready to move on. It's not going to be perfect, but it has the potential to be "better" -- which is all you can really hope for, right?

God, the drive back to town is always so tiring. I was going to wash linens tonight but I don't think I have the energy. 'Think I'm going to read for a while and get to bed.
katernater: (science (f) // Not by mathematics alone)
So, last night the MST3K'd version of Plan 9 From Outer Space was amazing. I was pretty surprised at how full the theater was, especially since Mystery Science Theater 3,000 has been off the air for over half a decade. But there were plenty of loyal fans there, and everyone cheered when Mike, Bill and Kevin came onscreen. The movie itself was awful. Like, when people tell you that Plan 9 From Outer Space is absolutely the worst movie that's ever been made, they're not exaggerating. Bela Lugosi actually died before filming was finished, so Ed Wood got his wife's chiropractor to fill in. That, matched with the styofoam tombstones and Jiffy-Pop spaceships make for a camptastic campfest. But all that, of course, is what totally makes the movie. It's so bad that it's actually good.

After the movie, Todd and I went over to Buffalo Wild Wings for some chow (I hadn't eaten all day because I'd been on campus since noon) and a couple of beers. It was nice to actually go out with my fiance. We haven't been able to spend a lot of time together (we've both been incredibly busy), so reconnecting was especially nice.

Today dawned cold and rainy, and I almost got into a fight with my Advanced Composition professor about whether or not Cormac McCarthy's characters are interesting or not. He says "not." I say you must have a pretty high standards system if you fail to be impressed by a sociopathic assassin who uses a stunbolt gun to kill his victims (Anton Chigurh, No Country for Old Men), or a murderous intellectual, seven feet tall and completely hairless (Judge Holden, Blood Meridian). But, you know, you're the authority, 'teach. All McCarthy ever did was win the Pulitzer.

I've got so much to get done before I go home next week. Blerg.
katernater: (ugh (bb) // The irascible Bernard Black)
→ My brother didn't come into town today after all. There's some kind of festival going on in Valparaiso and my brother has a friend there who pilots hot air balloons; he was going to give my brother and his girlfriend a free trip, but I guess plans fell through. That's okay. I'll get to see him next month when I'm home for fall break.

→ Todd and I received our financial aid refund checks (finally!) and the first thing we did was go out and spend $230 on groceries. We needed it. Now our cabinets are full -- there's even beer in the fridge again! YAY!

→ I'll be working two eight-hour shifts over the next two days. Well, today and tomorrow, that is. Thank goodness I don't have a heck of a lot of homework to do for Monday. It'll be nice to have a little extra money. Essentially, what I'm making at my current job helps to pay for the gas that gets me to and from campus. I'm trying to be more frugal with my spending habits this time around.

→ Of course, I say that, then I have to admit that I went out and bought the second season of Supernatural yesterday. (Hey! It was a used copy! Cheaper!) And when I got home from work tonight, I found that Todd had bought me season three. What a terrific guy. ♥

→ I got another e-mail from my TESOL instructor. It looks like I'm tentatively set to teach a class at the International Center every Wednesday morning. Hooray! Now, whenever I feel down at work, I just tell myself that I'm going to be doing much, much cooler things (for money!) before too long. That helps.

→ I feel like I deserve a beer after my long day. Is that irresponsible?

→ NOTRE DAME VS. MICHIGAN: 38-34. MICHIGAN WINS! WOO HOO!
katernater: (hyper (me) // Sometimes socially awkward)
CLASSES.

Start tonight, that is. I've got a block from five o'clock to nine thirty. TESOL is up first, and I'm hoping that I'll get more information on that teaching gig my instructor e-mailed me about last week. Plus, a lot of the kids from last semester will be back this semester, which is great, because I really don't like that awkward feeling of going into a new classroom and not knowing anyone. After TESOL, I've got a Composition course. I have no idea what to expect. Except composition.

Todd's at class right now, but when he gets back, we're going to go out and run a few errands. I have to pick up House s5, and we both have coupons for a free pair of jeans from The Gap (Todd's theater was giving them out as a promotional item and they discovered that you could see right through the SCAN HERE TO SEE IF YOU'VE WON A FREE PAIR OF JEANS sticker -- hey, what do you want from me?) and I need a new day planner because, apparently, I forgot to plan "don't lose this" in the old one.

Also. This.

WHAT'S WRONG WITH ME? I SHOULD LIKE NICE MEN.
katernater: (d'aww (h/r) // Ever the best of friends)
First thing's first. Today, Todd found out that he has been accepted into the graduate division at Valparaiso University! That's right, ladies and gentlemen, someday your children will be taught reading, writing and comic book lore by this guy. Sorry, ladies (and SLC Punks), he's all mine. And I couldn't be prouder.

I opened the store today and I woke up half an hour before I had to be there. I had set my alarm for 8:45, but didn't get out of bed until 9:28. I even did that thing everyone does when they wake up well past the time they're supposed to; I stared down the clock, praying that I was reading the numbers wrong, or that I had been struck by an acute case of selective glaucoma. I made it to work on time (showered, with my shirt on the right way and everything) and I was totally "durrrr" for the first hour, but otherwise, I was okay. I can't believe I did that. On the one day I don't wake up right before my alarm clock goes off. Of course.

Less pleasant: Les Paul, dead at 94. In the words of [livejournal.com profile] swankyfunk: "SERIOUSLY, 2009. I AM DONE WITH YOU."
katernater: (movies (im) // Merchant of death)
Money is such a nuisance. That is, not having money is a real pain. I had to borrow against my Simple IRA again, to make sure that Todd and I would make it through to the end of summer. I'm getting no more than 10-16 hours a week at work, I've had to tuck into my "retirement fund." I guess there's not a summer market for greeting cards. That, or there's not a market for "Thanks For Freeing Our Journalists!" cards. And yeah, the whole speech I gave the other day about "struggle makes you stronger" still holds true, but damn, you'd think the Universe could parse out the struggling a little bit. Struggling blows.

However, Todd and I have had some pretty good times lately.

For instance, I made muffins the other day.

And provided helpful instructions:
Photobucket

And on Monday, Todd and I sat down and watched thirteen hours of LOST. We started with the S3 opener and worked our way through to the end of the fourth disc. It's been fun to watch with Todd, especially because he's seeing it all for the first time. I get to be all mysterious and unhelpful with the clues. "Yeah, why does the statue only have four toes?" and "Hmm. Where did Juliet learn Kung-fu?" etc. etc. Thirteen hours may seem like a lot and, yeah, it probably is. But this is what we do best. We're watchers. Our second or third date was watching eight episodes of House in a row. It's terrific to have someone to share something this exciting with. And Todd can be just as obsessive-minded as me, which is fantastic because I think I'd go crazy if I couldn't go crazy with somebody else.

Plus, hey! It's Shark Week!
katernater: (silly (c) // I don't feel like dancin')
Todd and I are really feeling the pinch of the End Of Summer. See, we're both working retail part-time for the season, trying to make ends meet between May and when school starts in August. That's when our financial aid checks come in. We've been doing all right so far. We've been able to make rent and pay bills, and we've made a couple of pounds of chicken last two months. Now we're getting down to the bare bones of our cabinets. We were talking about what we're going to make for dinner tomorrow night -- spaghetti with Mom's Meatloaf Meatballs -- when we realized that we only have about half the necessary ingredients. But, from famine comes strength: we've been saving up spare change in an old Altoids tin, and, all figured, we've probably got about ten bucks crammed in there. Enough to buy an onion and a box of Ritz, anyway.

I bring all of this up because. honestly, I'm kind of proud of the both of us. This is the first time we've both been out on our own -- really out, with only ourselves for support -- and we're actually doing okay. Sure, there are plenty of things that we'd like to buy, and if we had kept our salaried jobs, we probably could have had them by now. But I don't think we'd be as happy.

I'm this close to being done with S5 of LOST. I got through "Dead Is Dead" today, which added another five kablillion points to my "Reasons Why Benjamin Linus Is Awesome" tally. I don't even care that retro!Ben looks exactly like an English cricket commentator -- or what I imagine an English cricket commentator to look like, having never met one. "I say, very bad ballywags indeed, wot?"

Yes. I am culturally aware.
katernater: (smooth (b) // Evil is thirsty work)
Photobucket


One year ago yesterday, Todd proposed to me in the middle of Trafalgar Square. It was the most romantic thing anyone has ever done for me. Last night, we wanted to do something special to celebrate the occasion, so we got dressed up and went out for an amazing steak dinner. Then, we came back to the apartment, cracked open a couple of beers, and played the Black Books Drinking Game. Which, in reality, isn't as much of a game as a race to see who can finish their beer before the end of each twenty-two minute episode.

Then, Todd made some toast with jam. Which he stuck on the side of my face. Which prompted a toast fight. Which was awesome.

I love that guy.

And, because there's nothing cooler than someone showing you photos of a vacation you didn't go on:

TRAVEL RETROSPECTIVE (YOU KNOW, IN CASE YOU MISSED IT):
Europe, Part I
Europe, Part II
Europe, Part III
Europe, Part IV
katernater: (dorky (hl) // The beat of his own drum)
Todd: [watching the first season of LOST] See, this is what I was waiting for. All of these connections between characters.
Me: Yeah, it's pretty cool. [Matthew Fox appears on screen] There's another thing about Jack, too. In the fandom. It's "Jack's crying. Must be Wednesday."
Todd: I've noticed that he cries a lot.
Me: At least once an episode he gets hurt and makes a wibbly face.
Todd: It must be all of those LOST thought cookies.
Me: [as Jack] "Your thought cookies gave me wibbly face!"
katernater: (awesome (h) // I didn't go to McGill)
I hate when I move a load of laundry from the washer to the dryer, walk away, forget about it for three hours (because I am doing very serious scholarly research online) and then only remember that it's in there because I don't hear the sound of three or four hooded sweatshirts smacking around. So I run everything through another time. Because I'm too lazy to learn from my mistakes.

The Soloist was amazing. Robert Downey Jr. was just perfect, and Jamie Foxx did an exemplary job bringing a real level of twisted, tortured genius to his own character. I'd give the movie a solid 7 out of 10. Pretty respectable. I'm really looking forward to Star Trek. Todd thinks we can get in to see it opening week. The soundtrack is pretty epic, too. I'm surprised and not surprised that J.J. Abrams tapped Michael Giacchino to do the music. On the one hand, I would have liked to see a more seasoned composer at the helm of the Enterprise. On the other hand, J.J. Abrams can't drop a polar bear into the jungle without a musical cue from Michael, so I guess he was going with what he knew.

Todd managed to find the only copy of Mr. Holland's Opus for sale in the tri-county area. He brought it home as a gift for me. I was so happy. I love that movie. I look at the box or read the synopsis on the back and I get verklempt. BUT. I'm so sad that Richard Dreyfuss is in that new Nia Vardalos movie. It's kind of like what it would be like if Brando had ever gone to Sheboygan to do dinner theatre. Kind of.
katernater: (fun (w) // Because we want to)
Todd and I are going to see The Soloist tonight and we are getting in for free because Todd works at the theater and is -- as I've said many times before -- just that awesome. Apparently we get to go to all the free movies we want. Well, Todd does. And Todd's allowed to bring one guest. And since I'm the only person that Todd knows here, he's taking me. (I suspect that some part of it has to do with the fact that we'll eventually get married. But, you know. I like to go with the "limited resources" explanation.)

I finished Smoke and Mirrors this afternoon. We had to choose a collection of short stories by an American author for our final project in Creative Writing and, after some wheedling (and a little bit of the ol' "plaintive grad student eyes"), my professor agreed to let me read Gaiman -- an English transplant, living in America. I wasn't really impressed with Smoke and Mirrors. He seemed to have a lot of really fantastic ideas, which he carried well for a while, but they all ended too abruptly and with too much ambiguity. And I'm not stupid -- I don't need to be explicitly told how a story ends -- but Gaiman's short stories just run out of gas at the end. I really liked the one about the old woman who found the Holy Grail at a thrift shop, though. That was sort of the inspiration for my short story. Except with priceless art.

I put in a half dozen applications this week, mostly retail. I kind of hope that I get the job at Hallmark. It will make Mother's Day so much easier.

Next week is the last full week of classes. Holy crap, this semester went by quickly.

Also, this is the best peanut butter I've ever had. I keep sneaking whole spoonfuls out of the jar.
katernater: (castle (cb) // Adversarial relationship)
So, uh, based on this alone, I think I'll end up going to see Angels & Demons when it's released. I love Hans Zimmer. I hate Dan Brown. I love the thought of Ewan McGregor in a priest's cassock. I'm so shallow.

Exciting, exciting academic news! That Argumentation exam that I took a couple of weeks ago? The one that everyone in the class thought they bombed? I got an 88.3%! I wasn't worried, necessarily, but I had some anxiety about the test itself. I thought it was a real challenge. It's nice to see that my hard work paid off -- I studied pretty rigorously. AND. I finished my short story! I sat down on Monday afternoon and wrote it all in about three hours. I spent the rest of the week revising and refining. I'm really happy with how it turned out. I suppose the fact that it had been percolating in my head for such a long time really took some of the pressure off of me to come up with an idea; the people I've showed it to tend to like it, which is a pretty great feeling. ("Pretty great" She must be a writer!)

Todd got a job at the local megaplex, and he starts orientation today. He gets to wear a visor and a bow tie. Hee.

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