Ellen Million (ellenmillion) wrote,
Ellen Million

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Art, writing, cutting hair and living in our house, as well as fandom pondering.

I had Jake cut my hair a week or two back. This is the first time it's been this short since 6th grade or so, and it's awfully cute. (She says humbly…) I didn't realize how much curl my hair had. I was completely resigned to having stick-straight hair, but somewhere along the way, about the time I stopped bothering with brushing the damn stuff, I got waves, and even the occasional ringlet. How the hell did that happen? It's nice at this length, 2 or 3 inches past my collarbone, and actually has body. That's new for me. I cut it to make it easier to keep clean, since about half of my showers are going to be sponge bathes and washing my hair in a bucket for a while. I have surprised myself by having absolutely no problem living this way. Yeah, so I have to go pee in the woods still (not even an outhouse!!). But we have an outdoor light (I am, shamefully, desperately afraid of the dark), and it's just not that grueling. Small price to pay, if you ask me.

Living at our house is just… amazing. I'm so happy there! I don't have a computer, or nagging 'do me now' work calling me every time I turn around, so I draw nearly every evening. I'm even thinking of bringing my paints out of storage. I have a scary amount of space. Must… not… fill… space… I'm not even sure I want a computer at home anymore. We have the entertainment tube for DVDs, videos and TV (our reception rocks, for most channels), and I have my sketchbooks. With Jake and Velcro as additional entertainment, what more do I need? A computer is too much like work, and I can do all my surfing at the dayjob.

I inked the piece I was working on last night, and I'm afraid I've dreadfully screwed up her face. Not that the inking was badly done, but one of her eyes was just in the wrong place, and I didn't notice until I was all inked and finished. Garrrr!! Maybe I can fix it in Photoshop. Also, the background looks icky. Again something I may be able to fix on the computer, or possibly with liberal application of more ink. Should have stuck with dots, however frustrating, instead of x hatching. Other than that, I think it looks smashing. Vaguely art nouveau, with nice clean lines, a decent composition, and the cat *still* looks like a cat!!

Oh … got a gold at Kadanzer, after protesting mightily that golds were overused and abused. Bah. But I had some plots I needed a weyrling goldrider for. I have discarded those plots, having decided *not* to kill off Zherra in a gruesome way (for now…), but there are still an awful lot of fun things to do with her.

I am rather at a loss over how to deal with the praise I'm getting for my Kadanzer stories. Masterpieces? My silly little scribbles? Maybe it's just because the audience is predisposed to liking the setting, being all Pern fans there. I rather wish I could get some portion of the same kind of attention and collaborations on my snow-unicorn stuff, though I know it isn't as good… the praise is wildly inspiring, and you'd better believe it's flattering and delightful and wonderful. But I can't help but feel like I just don't *deserve* it. Yes, those are my best stories, easily, but I still have so far to go. They lack some depth, and they need better transitions, less thick on the angst, and more action. I'm low on plot, and high on flowery description. The sob factor gets too high. Not that I don't think they're fun and the characters have a certain spark to them, but the way I'm spoken of makes me squirm and think 'that's too much.'

I need to dig out the stuff I did for NaNoWriMo and give it some more attention. There's a good base there, but it needs some work.

I'm thinking about leaving fandom.

I love my fanclubs to pieces, and I've met the most wonderful people there, but…

I'm shameless. I want to make money from everything I do for fun. I want to be able to put my illustrations up on Elfwood, or anywhere public, without fearing the wrath of lawyers. I want to make it in a tight, competitive, creative market against geniuses like Ursula and Stephanie Law, and I'm not going to do that if everything I write and draw is useless work contained behind passwords and no one has ever heard of me. I need to be writing things for small press magazines at $5 a pop and sending out new portfolios, not writing obscure fanfiction and drawing my own characters. The last time I sent out portfolios, frankly, I sucked. I still managed a few illustration jobs out of them, spread out over some years. I could do better now.

I get complacent in fanclubs. Maybe there's not tough enough competition or selection. If I write something vaguely crappy, it's okay, and no one complains or rejects it. Hell, I sometimes get as many kudos for complete crap as I do for decent stuff. Where's the incentive in that?

I don't know. I feel restless with Kadanzer, and Rushwater, too. Like I ought to be doing something different. Like I'm too scared to try to write or draw 'real' stuff.

I console myself that at least I'm not the only one. The amount of raw talent in these two clubs put together is amazing. The people themselves are simply wonderful individuals. The amount of effort in the webpages and organization is awe-inspiring. I just… I want to harness that, and steal all those people and make them do my own projects. Isn't that terrible? I'm so… selfish.

Blech. Much meandering. I'm going to go re-write my 'Grab Your Torches' article on flame wars for Woodworks. Got it back from the proofer and felt like it sucked swampwater upon re-read. I can do better. I can. I will.

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