Brandon Is Writ(ing) Again - 2 +



I sat here and watched you lose your mind
The screen was blind, my eyes were scary
Violet luggage holds them up
The weight is heavy, they grow weary
They twitch from travel,
The nerves dried up
like a river in the summer
But the water will return
And you won’t

I have now written over 5,000 words for the novel I've started working on. I’m still behind on my goals although I've had a couple of days where I wrote almost 1,500 words, and my daily goal is 750. I’m still catching up.

I read my bio on here the other day and read through some of the comments. I was going to rewrite a whole new bio but I found that most of it still applies to me.
At first I was extremely confident about what I was writing with this new novel but today I had my first little bit of doubt. I have to remind myself that I’m not writing poetry, but I still want the writing to be poetic in a way. I just don’t want my voice to be uninteresting and that is what I am doubting at this point. I re-read what I have written so far and I know that it’s good, but I don’t know that it’s great. I am aiming for that perfect mix of dialog with active writing and with introspective and descriptive writing. I want to have someone who I know can write well critique me and motivate me to continue and tell me things that could be better but I don’t know who that person would be. If Chuck Palahniuk is reading this shit, please hit me up man.

After doing some more research about genres and the lengths of books within those genres, I now realize my novel should only be about 80,000 words at the most. I guess it fits within the “young adult” genre but it will be a good read for anyone that’s fourteen or older. I keep changing the age of the two main characters because I've found as I’m writing that some things I’m saying probably shouldn't be aimed at twelve year olds. The main characters are now fifteen and fourteen and it’s possible that I’ll raise those each by a year again, but we’ll see.

I want to talk about some deeper things about the novel and what I want it to accomplish. First of all, one of my favorite books of all time is The Perks of Being a Wallflower. It made me really feel like it was okay to be who I am and ever since I read it I've craved to write something that connects with people like that book has connected with me and so many others. I want the novel I’m writing to inspire teenagers who have parents who don’t really care. I want it to touch on things that a lot of teenagers deal with and struggle with and I want it to make them feel like it’s okay. I want it to make people think outside the box and also inspire them to live outside that box and to pursue what they really want while dealing with things like suicide, depression, rape, anorexia. I want it to show dark things happening to bright people. I want the contrast to be uncomfortable.

One of the reasons I went on a hiatus was because I started to feel like I was romanticizing a feeling of sadness and you have to understand that as long as you are doing that you are going to feel sad no matter what. I’ve been living my life and found that it only gets harder but I am finding my way slowly but surely.

Anyway, if you read this post I would really appreciate a comment because it lets me know that people are interested. I am going to write new updates no matter what, but the comments will really motivate me as I continue to move forward with what I hope to be a piece of writing that will outlive me.

Thank you for reading and stay tuned.

Brandon Is Writ(ing) Again +



Well, kind of. Right now I'm writing this blog post as an excuse for being sidetracked from a novel I am writing. Yes, you read that correctly. A novel I am writing. A novel of which the first draft will (if my goal is met) be finished by my 22nd birthday (July 23 of this year). Actually, the image above is a snippet from it which I blurred out to the point where you can't read the words. Today is the 5th day of progress and I'm pleased with how it's coming along so far, even though I haven't quite met my word count goals. I understand that these goals I have set are merely motivation to get the book finished and to keep writing each day. More about that later, though.

I am more dedicated than I ever have been. It's so easy to let a story go stagnant in your mind and I am not going to let that happen this time.

And by this time, I am referring to the contrasting times such as when I was posting "Contagious," a book that I was writing on this very blog, right before your eyes. That was a few years ago, and I have been on a writing hiatus since then. Real life has been happening during that hiatus, and I have learned many new things about life, love, adventure, heartbreak, mistakes (plenty of them), and so on.

There were people who contacted me and told me they wished I had finished Contagious, and I always replied with the same "one day I will be published" excuse for not being published currently and for not writing anything new for them to read.

I was 16 when my love for writing rapidly expanded and took shape in this blog and other writing outlets on the internet. I took it extremely seriously and spent a lot of time studying the craft and learning before I dared publish things for the world to read. All things considered, it went really well, too. I found my voice and I believe I still have it. For me, writing is just like riding a bike.

An old reader actually deserves the credit for sparking my interest in writing this new novel. While I was on my little hiatus, I never even thought about writing. But when that spark hit my mind, it burst into flames and here I am with a full story line laid out, waiting for me to fill in the blanks.

As far as my progress goes, I currently have a title, characters, concept, themes, conflicts, setting, a one sentence summary, a full summary, and details about each of the four acts. To put that into perspective, I wrote Contagious without any of that. It was off of the top of my head and whatever I felt like at the time got written down. That is somewhat how I am writing this novel too, but I have the main parts of the story worked out already so I know for sure that there's an actual story being told before I actually tell it. Contagious stopped at about 12,000 words, and to this day I still have absolutely no idea where I was going with the story. That is why I wasn't able to finish it. And I'm sorry for leaving you guys hanging like that.

To be quite honest, it's hard work getting the ball rolling on a novel, because it seems like such a big undertaking. It IS a big undertaking. And it's even harder to keep that ball rolling once it starts. That is why I've set a daily goal for myself of 750 words. It was originally 1,000 words, but I lowered it to make it more realistic. The way I write is, I write about 200 words, then I read the last 1,000 words I wrote, then I procrastinate, then I write 50 more words, and that might be all I write for the day. What this results in is well-polished writing, but at a really slow pace. This is something I will get better at as I go along.

Many people give advice to just get the rough draft finished as fast as possible and then go back and revise, so what happens is they write for a few months and then spend a year or more in revision. That's never how I've written. I remember for writing assignments in school, my rough draft would be so polished that I would be done after some minor revision while everyone else was asked to do 2nd, 3rd, or maybe even 4th drafts. That's how I intend to write this novel as well, with a polished rough draft, and about a month of revision.

If you're into the whole numbers thing, here's the number I stand at currently: 1,154. Assuming an estimated 100,000 words will be adequate for telling the entire story, I'm about 1.2% done with the first draft. And I'm quite happy with that, even though if I had been meeting my goals I would be at over double that number right now. I will pick up the pace, but I won't do it as a sacrifice of well thought out writing. I have every intention of meeting my goals and deadlines, but the most important thing is that I'm happy with the progress and that progress is being made.

I just realized this blog post is at almost 900 words now, and I wrote it in maybe 30 minutes. That just shows how much easier it is to write about real life than it is to write about something that hasn't actually happened. When you have the power and responsibility of creating a world through writing, it is a difficult experience. It is also extremely rewarding, though, and I can't wait for the novel to be finished so you guys can read it.

So I'm going to go now and finish up my writing for today.

If you read this post and are actually interested, leave a comment below so I know I should keep posting updates.

Fetusboy +











Fetusboy

By: Brandon Elliott


Walking in the womb hunched over with gloom,
the smell of silence, impending doom in the red room,
in pen he pencils it in as if it's on his own tomb
and he'll sing it tomorrow

Born again with every passing day, meaning tomorrow he is dead
So every day he passes away in the room that's red
Time goes by, but he's not older
just a sensitive fetus, crying out with sorrow

Dreams are held back by an army, he's a soldier at heart
regimes fight the demons daily, he tries to outsmart them
another day, another war
his time is borrowed

Birth awaits him, he wants to go where it's warm
It's storming outside, he strays from the norm
lost at sea near la la la land
unaware that the water is shallow, and he can stand in it

Paranoia fills his lungs, he exhales hatred
arms outstretched desperately grasping for something sacred
nothing's there but a dollar bill, he settles for greatness
now aware that the world is shallow, and he can't stand it



When It Rains +


When It Rains


by: Brandon Elliott


So you're not perfect, but you act like it
nothing ever changes but we try
So it's okay, but you don't act like it
I can hear the shame when you sigh

I have faith in your sadness alright
and I trust that you won't succeed
So if you were wondering how I sleep at night
It's like the mindset of a hairline when it recedes

I'm not really that into myself,
I think maybe we should break up
But I'm stuck in this relationship
and I'm sinking to the bottom of the cup
drinking holes into my liver
Passed out, but I can hear "get up"
and I'd get up, but my feet don't touch the bottom of the river

So you say I have a knack for disappointment,
and I'm "like really not that cool"
So I'm not going to this appointment
and maybe I'm just a fool, but

You're perfect to me, but I don't act like it
And we can change the world while it complains
So it's okay, but not exactly like it,
I see your pain in the sky when it rains

Something, I Think +


By: Brandon Elliott

Something that's supposed to make you understand
Something that's meant to leave you scurrying
I think I'm finally ready to let go of your hand
I think it's about time that I stopped worrying

Something that makes you, breaks you, hurts your pride
Something that explains the way you make me feel
I think you're interesting, but I think our souls collide
I think you like the way you've watched me heal

Something that's happy, sappy, just for no reason
Something that's sad, just to keep you real
I think going against you might be treason
I think I like the way I watch you kneel

Something to metaphorically, rhetorically explain it
Something to synthetically, regrettably re-create it
Something to pull you away from doing nothing
Something to make you, mayday, make you feel something

I think you're thinking, sinking way too often
I think your thinking's shrinking, you're starting to soften
I think you think you've wasted way too much time
and if you're willing to fall, then I'm willing to climb

Something to panic you, something to panic me,
Something to think about when you're thinking of me

Hung Read Red Dreams +



Hung Read Red Dreams


By: Brandon Elliott


Stop talking.
Stop

The noise is too sickening,
cutting through the air-
like a knife through a finger
"God, I can't find anything to wear"

There's a closet, it's full
tags still hanging on their strings
but it's not enough
it's not enough,
she's a high-class bulimic, she
pukes diamond rings

So I start drinking, it's apparent
I'm not fit to be a parent

"Shut up, stop talking"

Stop talking.
Stop

Her hand sliding down my stomach,
my hand sliding up hers
A television screaming in the background,
commercials are the worst

So I start thinking, it's conclusive
the DNA results will be inconclusive

"Stop!"

She's not talking.
She's not

The noise is like gunshots through air
Each fractal contracting, then splitting
My headache is splitting
Bang, bang

Spewing
Gunshots through her ear

Is that weird,
is that weird
Even the mirror is scared

So I start blinking, blinking
flashing lights that reveal
A flash of light re veils
my thoughts, life's plots,

an anecdotal fear

Stop talking.
Stop

They might hear
They might care

Digging ditches
Ticking ditches at the side of the road
wouldn't listen, wouldn't explode

So I filled it with the lies she told
and covered them up with her dead body

So I

I woke up, and I realized
this was all just a dream
or maybe, it was a metaphor
for my lack of self-esteem

So we met at four, at the church we
got married at,
on her finger, the diamond ring

and I brought a gun, and some rope
and some paper to say goodbye
because this time I'd be
sure

She'd stop talking
these hungried red dreams.