Monday, November 20, 2006
FREUD ON THE IRISH...and the failures of November
It started off as just a doodle, inspired by my friend, tinker, who led me to this exercise in Sacred Doodling. But once I'd completed my doodle, I started wondering what Freud might say it revealed about me. Then I remembered my favorite quote from the founder of psychoanalysis. Speaking of the Irish, he said:
"This is one race for whom psychoanalysis is of no use whatsoever."
Though I'm a born yank, by race I'm one of Freud's incurables. Whether he meant to infer that the Irish were too crazy , too complex, or too smart to be successfully analyzed, I'm not sure--though, of course, I have my opinion.
Or maybe it's just that the Irish are too imaginative to ever get their stories straight. Get someone like me on the couch, and I may spin tales for years--some as true and clear as a spring lake, others shall we say "embellished" by metaphorical fancy and my own love of the dramatic. Who can cure someone like that?
Anyway, from now on, my artmaking will be markedly improved because--(drumroll, please!) my copy of The Artist's Manual has arrived at last! Now that I have a little in-house instruction, I'm going back to the post where several of you kindly suggested some art supplies a novice like me might enjoy.
From now on, the computer paper, the black magic marker, and the glue stick will no longer be my weapons of choice!
I also have a few November confessions to make:
1. I've failed utterly at NaNoWriMo. Though my absurdly optimistic nature would normally tell me that yes (!) I could still make it from the 3,436 words I wrote to the holy grail of 50,000, every now and then even we cockeyed visitors from fantasy land must face reality. And reality is this: I've only got ten days left, including Thanksgiving, a two day trip to New Hampshire, and my cousin's wedding day--all days when I won't be writing. And given that I've never written more than 2,500 words in a day, the hard mathematical facts are against me. Has anyone got a white flag handy?
2. I've also failed at NaNoBloMo--the campaign to post every day. In fact, I've failed so miserably that I can't even get the acronym right. However, I love cheering from the sidelines as several of my blog friends have kept posting through colds and sick cats, bad relationships and bad weather. I'm in awe of you!
3. And what about Make Art Every Day? Well, as you can see, around here, it's been more like "make something that vaguely resembles art some days."
4. Even my own November posting schedule, in which I enthusiastically announced that I would impose structure on my unruly blog was what George Bush would call a rout.
Sometimes I adhered to the schedule; other times life and laziness (my two guiding principles) intervened, and I didn't.
But wait! There's another way to look at it:
1. It wasn't time for me to write a new novel right now. It was time to return to the first draft of one I'd already written and begin the serious process of flogging it into shape--which I did and with a joyful vengence. Thus, my nano failure was a writing success.
2. I didn't post every day. But then again, I didn't have something to say every day, so consider yourself spared.
3. No, I didn't make art every day, but I made it more than I have in years. I did it with family. I did it with friends. And now with my new Artist's Manual, I plan to continue the fun long after the last of the leftover Thanksgiving turkey has been consumed and the last brown leaf has fallen. It's an unqualified triumph!
4. I tried something new with the blog, and some of it worked! I love writing about Ten Things every Tuesday, and the existential question on Wednesday. I also love going out and hunting down a new blog discovery of the week. (Surfing with a purpose! What could be more divine?)
Sharing the best links I can find has been great, too, but I think I'd rather post them as I come upon them. Collecting and putting them up all at once seemed a bit like, well, work, and committed lazy person that I am, I don't come to the blog to work.
So how's that for a fabulous self-justification? I fail at absolutely every single goal I set myself for the month, then I declare it some kind of crazy success. Maybe Dr. Freud was right, after all...