Friday, June 19, 2009

Can anyone tell me...?

So, in my continuing search for an agent for my novel, I’ve discovered two things: 1) this search is hard and 2) a different definition for literature.

Now, I don’t know about you, but I’ve always thought of literature as more of an umbrella term for novels, poetry, novellas, etc. Literature is writing. And, yes, I might bend that idea a bit to say that literature hints at some higher standard of novels, poetry, novellas, etc, but still.

Would someone please tell me what agencies mean when they say “we accept fiction and literature”? What’s the difference? Where’s the split? Is there a word count, or some way to measure vocabulary in a way that divides normal fiction from literary fiction? Do I have to sound like Jane Austen when I write? Because, I’ll be honest, she bores me.

Can anyone answer this for me? How do we define literature?

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

In the Words of my Brother #2:

"Hey, Ani, what's an OB/GYN?"

What?! What?!

I effin’ love Primeval. I caught it for the first time about a week and a half ago. And I’m almost caught up now because I’m just that awesome. I’ll be honest, I was a bit shocked when the second episode I saw was (SPOILERS! SPOILERS! Highlight to read) Cutter’s death. I literally spent the next five minutes going: “What?! What?!” Still, I’ve kept watching every weekend and love it.

I will tell you, that I loved watching the stories, action and characters progress. It was just a really great program. Which is why I’m completely and totally annoyed that it’s been axed. Not only was it just getting good but series 3’s cliffhanger was amazing and I was totally excited to see what happened next…and now I never will.

What. The. Heck. Un-freaking-fair.

Obviously, my two looooonng months as a photocopy b*tch at a local film company did teach me something about drugged-up directors, pissy special effects guys, sweet stunties, guys from transpo who flirt endlessly with you, whiny actors, intimidating actors, dailies, call sheets, taking phone calls and the ever-important concept of money affecting quality and ability to create. From what I understood of the article…there just wasn’t the dough to keep making the show and I probably wouldn’t even be this bothered if it hadn’t been for the series finale.

I hate not knowing what’s going to happen. It’s frustrating. As a writer, I commend the finale, because it’s something that I would have written if this was mine to write. It was excellent and exciting and you didn’t really know who to cheer for more—Abby with Connor or Danny chasing Helen? When the scenes cut back and forth I had a tendency to shout “No! What happens! Go back!” so that’s good.


Each character came into their own, but still I’m depressed. Are we really only left to the mercy of fanfiction writers to know what happens to our intrepid heroes? What was Sarah’s idea? What about the little do-hickey that Helen dropped? And most importantly, how did Mr. Connor “I think I broke me ankle” Temple climb a tree?

Actually: I can answer that one. I’ve always been a tree climber, so I went out to test if it was possible to climb a tree with only one leg. It is, but you need well-placed branches to hoist yourself up on, otherwise you’re screwed.

So, to anyone who’ll listen: Please do something. Write a novel, make that American movie, do something because I just want to know what happens as do millions of others, I’m sure.

C’mon, ITV, wasn’t there another show you could have cut instead?

In Which I Reveal My Gangsta Soul

Hey, yo! This is a shout-out to all my home-skillets out there in the sci-fi tv ‘hood. Holla back, geeks, y’know we love you! To my boys: D-Jackson, Connor Temple and the Lone Gunmen. Peace!

We all know that geeks don’t get the respect they deserve, cuz they’re out there bustin’ their ass for our heroes with the guns and their slick moves. Holla to the geeks, cuz you and I—we the same. We come from the same backgrounds and watched the same things. We are alike—you and I, geek. You represent who I am, who others are, and you do it well, dogs.

So, holla boys. Power to the geeks!

Ani Out!

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

In the Words of my Brother:

“Everyone thinks in Scottish accents.”


He was in my dreams last night, moving with the crowd who prowled the milky-white outskirts of my fabricated reality. His hair was long, his clothes pale, but even in my dreams I can pick him out of a crowd. He stopped, just for a moment, and turned to look at me. His face and expression was empty, revealing no emotion, but his eyes—oh, his terrible eyes—held so much that I think I might have stopped breathing, just for a moment. He didn’t say a word and a moment later he was pushed along by my dream-crowd.

I didn’t move. I didn’t run after him. I just stared and watched him fade away into white.

When I woke up, I ached. I felt the impulsive need to call him up and clutch that bit of Japanese-made plastic and wires and ask, “Alexander, you remember that day when I came over and instead of doing dishes like I said I would, we ate lemon drops and watched The Day the Earth Stood Still? That was nice.” And “Do you recall when you and I fought in the middle of the library and I made you cry? That was awful, but I miss that.” I wanted to do that, but I didn’t, because his number had changed and I promised him a long time ago that I’d only call if I really needed something.

Maybe he needed to hear that, but I don’t think he’d want it.

Alexander is not my ex. He was my friend, but I don’t know the word for him now. In autumn of 2007, he was dating my friend, Sarah. We bonded over sci-fi television, we could complete each other’s sentences, we laughed at the same jokes. If I didn’t think he was such an idiot, I would have probably dated him myself.

Alexander, Sarah and I spent the better part of a year and half with each other. We were seventeen and eighteen and taking our first foray into the big, bad world. We were defying convention: him a Catholic, she a Jew and me a “she’s-just-Ani” and we thought we were just oh-so-cool and original for doing so. I remember sitting in the piano practice rooms, curled up behind the door in the dark and watching them desperately mashing their lips and noses together, writhing strangely on the carpeted floor as the room temperature grew warmer and began to smell more like Alexander’s cologne and incense.

It’s funny how much I believed that this perfect feeling would last forever. I felt like I belonged, like I was watching something amazing grow, both in our friendship and in their relationship.

Of course, things don’t work like that.

Life happened in a flurry where we laughed and danced and sang and stayed out late and got a little bit drunk and lived like this was it, that we only had these years of youth and they would go stretching on forever and ever.

I recall one night after a concert, where we went rushing down the street, singing oldies and I felt so happy. Life was intoxicating! And they took my hands and we went rushing across the empty street against the light, and leaped off the curb and for a just a moment, when I looked up at the night sky, it felt like I was flying.

Gravity, though, is a law of nature and I hit the ground a few months later as our friendship crumbled and Sarah moved downtown and Alexander left the country for a while. I still saw Sarah every Saturday and one day, sitting in a little room by ourselves I asked her why she looked so pensive.

"I’m worried about Alexander.”

“Why?” I asked.

She said she didn’t know, that there was something different in the way he spoke to her. That he was definitely depressed and that something had happened. And because Alexander and I were so very alike, I knew, but I didn’t dare say what I thought had happened out loud.

Alexander is impulsive and impervious, sad and easily manipulated and they used that against him as he drank himself into a stupor at the back of some club where he didn’t speak the language. They pushed him down and made him do things he’d never do—terrible, half-recalled things that haunted his dreams the same way he haunted mine.

I couldn’t get a firm enough grip on the action, on that moment and that idea, to feel anything about. I was grasping at emotions that I didn’t understand, desperately going through the emotions of anger and grief of what my once-friend had lost. Still, I couldn’t begin to understand, except in my dreams, where he turned and looked at me in a crowd, in a milky-white fog and for a moment I stopped breathing. For just a single moment, I had a tiny scrap, an iota of emotion and understanding that nearly broke my heart.