Posted in Word Therapy

Focus, Nostalgia, and Research

Ugh. Last week sucked. Depending on how you look at it, I have a deep character flaw or an admirable character trait: I’m not afraid of confrontation and when I see something that I think is wrong, I say or do something. As a kid who was constantly bullied and didn’t have somebody stick up for me, it’s hard for me to let injustice go unnoticed. Be it when somebody tries to bully me online or nearly hits me in the school pickup line and then asks if I want to do something about it when I call him out, I lose my focus. I replay the scenario over and over in my head. I have to constantly tell myself there is nothing wrong with me and I didn’t do anything wrong. This consumes my mind and I have to work to take back control. With a few dark days between me and the last incident, writing and letting go is how I do that. For now I have accepted that we are living in the Upside Down. It is time to take the first step with my new story: Research.
Over the past month I have searched for pop culture that has brought me comfort as a kid (nostalgia and all). Movies like Star Wars, Sixteen Candles, and The Lost Boys defined my childhood. But what I have been remembering with fondness lately is Movie Macabre with host Elvira, Mistress of the Dark.
Movie Macabre aired on Saturdays from 1981-1985. They showed B scary movies that starred horror staples Vincent Price and Christopher Lee. The films were pure camp. I remember loving The Blob and Swamp Thing (which didn’t air on Movie Macabre but is so good it deserves a viewing). With my new book I want to escape to this kind of darkness and tongue in cheek humor. I have been going through every episode and taking notes as to what make them stand out. So far I have come across an eight movie series that director Roger Corman based on Edgar Allen Poe tales. Poe is one of my favorite authors so this is one direction I will be heading into.
I also loved listening to old radio shows in my twenties that featured mystery and horror. These shows always left me feeling unsettled (which for some reason I like). I have started listening to the podcast Welcome to Night Vale. Each podcast is read by a local news station in the fictional city of Night Vale. It is madness and doesn’t try to explain or apologize for it. I don’t even know how to explain it more than that but the lack of rules is refreshing.
I have been studying both Movie Macabre and Welcome to Night Vale, trying to find inspiration. I have also started listening to a writer’s panel podcast, courtesy of Nerdist. Trying to keep my mind hard at work with these and distracting myself from what is going on globally is hard (but sometimes necessary). My medicine is not helping as much these days but the good thing is I am still aware. My body feels like my nerve endings are on the outside, all my thoughts need to be expressed one way or another, and crying is more frequent. We all have our coping mechanisms and I am just trying to build up my roster.

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Making a mad dash for the happy. Stay hydrated my friends.

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