Word Count (What I’m Writing); Updated every 2-3 Days (mostly)
- Project Ship of Shadows (Graphic Novel) Page Count: 20
Goal = 3 Pages a week. 20/20 Pages (for artist). 20/32 pages (for completion of 1st issue)
Actual = 0/5 Pages done so far this week.
Rough Drafted a page and will (hopefully) write it tonight. I usually try to rough draft the pages either Friday night or Saturday, but because I took a Tai Chi class with a friend–didn’t really get to rough draft as I normally would have, so I’m a little slow this week.
- Whale Song Revision (Fantasy Short Story) (2nd Draft)
(Researched an article on Whaling, think that I have the two characters–a brother and a sister who are on the opposite sides of the issue. Still, no Writing so far). Need to find a place to work in revisions–I can draft new material just fine, but I don’t seem to have any time to work on “drafting” revisions.
Currently Reading (What I’m Reading); Updated Weekly (mostly)
- For Fun:
Transhuman edited by Mark L. Van Name and T. F. K. Weisskopf
Just started this anthology – it was given to me at a LibertyCon some years ago, but I’ve just now gotten around to reading it. I may not finish it/read all the stories, but so far, I’ve read the first story and liked it.
- For School:
Afrofuturism (by Ytasha Womack): This book describes the academic genre of Afrofuturism (essentially African American Science Fiction that deals with social issues in culture). I just finished Chapter 3 today and I’m at the beginning of Chapter 4 (this book has 10 chapters).
- For Research/Personal Development:
Great Aircraft of WWII by Alfred Price and Mike Spick (for Project Skye)
Great Aircraft of WWII is a book that I’ve had in my collection for sometime–I’ve glanced at it periodically, but never read it cover-to-cover. Now, with Project Skye, I intend to do just that.
Hard vs. Soft
So, today I thought I’d take a moment and detail my experience in the Tai Chi class. It was really a very interesting experience. It was pretty much what I expected: part meditation, part mindfulness, and part martial arts. The class was small, yet friendly, and everyone wanted to really work hard, including me. And for me, that was difficult because Tai Chi isn’t about working hard, its about letting go. Again, this is where the meditation and mindfulness comes in, but Tai Chi is about decentering yourself and letting the stress go. While I’m not a “stress-puppy” (to use slang that went out of vogue at the turn of the 2000s), I tend to follow my late uncle’s advice of “staying Neutral,” (i.e., never too up or too down), so I’m pretty much already decentered to begin with–not meaning that I’m not stressed, I mean, I’m in a PhD program and a poor graduate student again for Peter’s sake, so of course I’m stressed, but I try to “stay in the middle” emotionally, so it’s hard to let go of something I’m not really holding (or only hold it when I need to).
Water vs. Stone
My real problem came in when I was trying to replicate the forms. I haven’t done real karate (with a teacher in a class) in years, no, decades now at this point. I remember as a karate student, I was super accurate with my forms and my “technique.” Perhaps it is just memory clouding my perception of things, but I found myself frustrated when I would miss a movement demonstrated by the teacher. He probably sensed my frustration because he said that someone from karate is going to have a hard time adjusting to Tai Chi. Karate is “hard” meaning that it is precise, hard-hitting, and rigid where as Tai Chi is “soft” meaning that it is more “flowing” and more “elegant” and not nearly as rigid. I found this to be very true as I struggled through some of the hand and foot combinations.
Learning through Unlearning
What I’m glad of, however, is the fact that both the teacher and Tai Chi were forgiving. I tried very hard to mimic the movements, but didn’t get them right all of the time (most of the time, if I’m honest), but the teacher said that to learn one needs to unlearn what one has learned. I know this implicitly, but it was nice to be reminded of it. Whenever I want to master something, I have to basically start over, go from whatever level I am and begin at level one all over again, otherwise I don’t really do that well in whatever it is I’m trying to master. This is what I needed to do in my graduate school (by rereading all of my books on Rhetoric for my MA in English), in my writing (by creating a process by which I draft and revise, write and rewrite, before submission), and now through Tai Chi, by figuring out the intersection between Tai Chi and Karate, and learning one, while drawing on my knowledge and experience in the other, but not letting it interfere with the new learning. While it may be a while before I get to take another class due to my schedule, it was a great experience and I’m glad my friend invited me to come.
- Read Faerie Knight in the anthology Fae, Rhonda Parrish, Ed. or the Kindle Edition
- Read Ship of Shadows in the anthology Visions IV: Space Between Stars, Carrol Fix, Ed. or the Kindle Edition.
- Read WarLight in the anthology Visions VI: Galaxies, Carrol Fix, Ed. or the Kindle Edition.
- Read Dragonhawk in the magazine Tales of the Talisman, Vol. 8, Iss. 3, David Lee Summers, Ed. or the Kindle Edition.
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