SALTNPAPER’s “Bye, Autumn”

I have an uncanny knack for procrastinating with my NaNoWriMo novel, and it just so happens that today’s method was a K-drama. This song came on while watching Jealousy Incarnate, and I’m now in a funk of melancholy. It’s too bad I haven’t gotten to the sad part of my NaNo novel to use this as inspiration. I thought I’d share it with you, not because I want you to be melancholy, too, (even if misery loves company), but I think it deserves attention. I, personally, have a few things weighing on me, and I find that tapping into the wistfulness through music can be therapeutic.

I’m really going to write now. If I can stop replaying this song, that is.


In which I Share My Writing for the First Time

Note: I thought, for some inexplicable reason, I would post some of my writing. I have never actually posted any fiction because it still makes me nervous! But I figure it’s time I get over it, so here it goes. This is actually something I wrote in a 15-minute freewrite after I watched Super Junior’s “Mamacita” music video. It hasn’t been edited save for two typos. Be nice! I should also mention that Gandalf selfishly wants me to continue this story. What do you think?

He stepped out onto the balcony of the riverboat, pulling a slim cigarette from his jacket pocket. It was the single most important part of every evening, his daily cigarette. Never more than one. Just one. He didn’t want to become one of those folks who were addicted to them. That wouldn’t be a good move, not if he wanted business to keep going. It’s a funny thing, business. All these men wanted to do work over brandy and cigars, or some other alcohol and smoking device. For his part, he preferred a good sherry, but sherry was a woman’s drink. So he settled for brandy when it was at hand. Whiskey if it wasn’t. But never beer. It was unsophisticated, and in his line of work, sophistication was of utmost importance.

On this night, there was no one to smoke with or drink with. There was no business to attend to. There would be tomorrow when he arrived in town, but for now, he could be at peace with the night sky, the fresh air, except for that he inhaled from the cigarette of course. He flicked a match against the railing, the soft glow from the flame licked out into the darkness. He briefly saw a fluttering of wings. He moved the match towards the cigarette. He didn’t like insects, but he didn’t want to willingly murder them by flame either. It was uncouth, unbusinessmanlike. He, after all, was a businessman.

He inhaled and blew out the smoke, trying to make rings like some of the other men he’s dealt with. He failed. They formed into oblong, jagged rings that resembled, more often than not, a vine that never managed to circle itself into a crown of thorns.

He sighed, noisily. He never did manage to nail that romantic aspect to other men his age, always a little more brusque, more forward, less cunning, less charming. He was not a ladies’ man by any means. He didn’t mind, though. He had work to do.

This is truly a magnificent night.” Waxing poetic was also not his thing.

He glanced back into his cabin, the small, four-walled room in the riverboat. Lying under the bed was a box, an unassuming box, bent, dented, nothing ornate, just cheap old wood. But inside the box was something very precious, something he had to drop off the next day. He never looked inside, though. Once he acquired the object he was hired to acquire, he’d tuck it away and keep it safe. Don’t look twice. The more times you look the likelier you were to be suspected of some treachery, and as he always said, “I will not be accused of betrayal. Nor do I want the temptation to keep it for myself. I am a businessman. Not a thief or robber.”

The box let out a jitter, a wave of temptation, seduction maybe. Inside was a crown of pure gold covered in jewels of emeralds, rubies, sapphires, diamonds. It was big. It was heavy, and it was worth a fortune. He turned from the box and shuddered. “I am a businessman,” he reminded himself.

B.A.P – Feel So Good

There are days when you don’t want to go to work, where you’d rather lie in bed for the rest of the day because facing what lies ahead is too hard. Maybe you have a big presentation to give or a meeting with the hire-ups. Maybe someone you love is ill, and there’s nothing you can do about it. Or maybe you’re just too plain tired to drag yourself out of bed. I have been through all of those things, and most days, I really would rather stay in bed. My bed is warm, not to mention how comforting it is to snuggle beneath a blanket. Alas, we can’t, and shouldn’t, stay in bed.

So for all those mornings (read: every morning), the first thing I do is play this song. This is a new tradition since this song was only released a month ago. But I have to say, it certainly helps me start my day on the right foot! It’s B.A.P’s “Feel So Good.” Go ahead. Let loose and dance like your tween self would have!

I hope you all feel so good you can conquer that morning dread and choose to face the day with happiness!

K-pop Writing Prompt: B.A.P’s 1004

It’s been a while since I’ve done a K-pop writing prompt. I can’t remember if I ever mentioned how successful the last one was. I ended up writing 532 words in fifteen minutes. That’s a lot for me! I decided to do another one to get the juices flowing again. This time Smarty Pants chose the song for me—B.A.P’s 1004. It was the only one he remembered the name of, but that’s alright. After fifteen minutes of writing, I had 447 words and the wheels were still turning. I may be able to work it (or the idea) into one of my novels or even the other K-pop writing prompt I did.

I think I’ve hit upon an excellent way of enhancing my creativity. It may not work for everyone, but so far it’s proved successful for me! I think I’ll take Gandalf’s advice and turn the first writing prompt (Super Junior’s Mamacita) into a story. It already has an interesting character, and isn’t that one of the harder elements of writing to figure out?

Happy writing!

Writing Prompts that Don’t Make Me Cringe (Hopefully)

First off, if you’re actually on my blog, you’ll see a new feature I added at the right, which is WORKS IN PROGRESS! This is a little psychological experiment I’m performing on myself. I figure if I track my progress for the whole world to see, it’ll make me write more. Even if no one looks at it, I can pretend that someone is and berates me for how poorly I’m doing. I’ll update it once a week, or at least that’s the plan. And if one of you does want to actually berate me, drop me an email or comment on a post. I won’t bite.

I’ve been meaning to post this for a while but kept getting sidetracked with other things, like how depressing life can get and other quite serious posts that probably didn’t need to happen. But you’ll all forgive me because you’re nice. So here’s a not-serious post, at least not emotionally speaking.

I’m always looking for new ways to spit out words on a piece of paper or word processor (I feel weird saying that, like a technology ignorant person, or non-committal how-to book.) because you have to keep your creative juices flowing, or so they tell me. I once tried writing prompts but didn’t like them. They were too narrow of a focus, making me work on things I didn’t want to work on. Come to think of it,  that might be why I should do them. Setting that aside for a moment, I came up with a new way to keep the ideas flowing! It hit me as I glanced over at a YouTube K-pop playlist I had running as I worked. If you’ve ever seen a K-pop music video, you’ll know how insane they can be. A lot of them have dramatic storylines, and if you don’t understand what they’re saying (like me!) except for the occasional “I love you” and “please,” you infer as much as you can from the visuals. So here’s what I thought. Use a music video as my writing prompt! This is probably not a new concept, but I was quite pleased with myself when I thought of it. Don’t ruin it for me.

Here’s my plan: 1) Watch a music video from any K-pop group; 2) Give myself fifteen minutes to do a freewrite of whatever (a story for the video, what it reminds me of, backstory for a character, continuation of story etc.). I’m hoping this way I’ll come up with new ideas and think of things that never occurred to me before. If nothing else, it’ll be a good excuse to listen to K-pop (again). Not that I need an excuse. I have no idea if this will actually work, but it seems a whole lot more pleasant to me than reading a few lines. I do understand the point of written writing prompts, but I don’t like feeling confined. If I want to get really fancy, I could even say before I watch the video, “Alright, Self. Let’s focus on point of view today.” Or maybe, “What if the girl said, ‘yes’ instead?” You see how I can change it up?

What do you think? I think I’ll do this once or twice a week and whenever my creativity seems to be dried up like day-old tea leaves. Get excited guys! This could be amazing. My first music video prompt will be Super Junior’s new single “Mamacita” because it’s one of the catchiest songs ever.

BIGBANG-Fantastic Baby

The dictionary definition of insane, at least to me. All the more exciting for it. I’m not the only one who thinks so–it has almost 109,000,000 views. Let me know what you think!

P.S. I’m off to read Mansfield Park, which is why it’s K-pop Monday.