Typing With Wet Claws: Story Brain Edition

Hello, all. Skye here, for another Feline Friday. Anty did not tell me what to write about today, so I am going to have to wing it, or, in my case, paw it. I do not have any wings, because I am a kitty; only paws. I use them for walking.  Only birdies have wings. Also bats, and some insects. Maybe also Pegasus (I do not know the plural form of that word, but it is a horsey with wings. I am not sure if they are real or fictional, but I do not want to find out by meeting one. They sound scary.)  I think Anty letting me say whatever I want today shows a great deal of trust. I will try to show her she did the right thing.

Most of this week can be divided into domestic tornado management and writing. Anty also found time to get to the library, along with Mama, and bring home a bunch of books. Eight of them, which is a lot, even though Anty says it is a reasonable amount. These are the books:

Anty picked them all. Mama did not find any books she especially wanted to read, but she wants to read some of the books Anty picked, when Anty is done reading them. So far, Anty is close to mostly through one. One. Anty needs more reading time. I would suggest that Anty try using some of the awake-in-the-middle-of-the-night time for reading, but the last time I did that, she looked at me like this:

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That is not something I want to go through again, so that was the last time I will make that suggestion. Anty is doing laundry at least once tomorrow, so that is two hours of potential reading time right there. If it does not turn into writing time, that is. Which it might.  One important thing to know if you have a writer in your life is that pretty much any time can turn into writing time. That comes with the territory, and does not only happen when they are in front of a computer or have a notebook at hand (although Anty usually does have at least one notebook within reach.) Many writers, including my Anty, do not have an off switch. Sometimes, it would be useful if they did, but they do not. At least mine does not.

We do not have any pictures of the Anty Has Story Brain look, and that is probably a good thing. Mama and Uncle and I have learned to recognize it, though, and I think some of the humans who work at the coffee house. Twice, this week, Anty has had a coffee house human remind her that her tea is right in front of her and she can sit down now.  Some of them know it because they are writers, too, and give the gentle prompt as a matter of professional courtesy. The best way I can describe that look is sort of blank, staring off into some place that is not there.  Maybe I should say it is something non-writers cannot see, because merely because something happens inside a writer’s mind does not mean it is not real. Making things in their heads become real is a big part of writers’ jobs, so it is no surprise that it happens when it happens. Sometimes, often in the car, Mama will notice Anty is too quiet, and ask “are you writing?” Almost always, Anty says that she is. Once, Mama asked, “How are Hero and Heroine?” Anty laughed, because that was where her story brain had gone.

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a very small portion of story brain


Anty says that, at least for her, story brain is a sign that she is on the right track, and the characters are doing their parts. It is like a movie in her head that plays itself and she has to get it all down. Maybe it is somewhat like recapping TV shows, except that there is no remote to pause things and she has to do it all in her head. I think the inside of Anty’s head is probably very messy, filled with pictures and sounds and bits of movies and snippets of songs, remembered smells and parts of ideas that started out as something else, but took on their own form after they swam around with all the other stuff for a while. I can imagine it is very easy to get lost in there at times, and that is why it takes Anty a little while to come back from it when she has to do things like go to the grocery store or figure out where Uncle’s sweater went.

Story brain is a lot better than lack-of-story-brain. Anty wrestled with that for a long while, and it was not pretty.  I am not sure that story brain is that much prettier, as her office looks like a tornado hit it. More books are coming out of boxes and going into her bookshelves, moving around so books she wants easiest access to, like the library haul, above, are the ones she can get to fastest, and books she never ever looks at can get ready to go to new homes. Right now, she needs books that will help  keep her moving forward in telling Hero and Heroine’s story, and those that don’t, need to go away. She says I can share pictures when she gets things neat again, but not right now.

Right now, Anty needs the computer back so that she can write more about Hero and Heroine, so that is about it for this week. Until next time, I remain very truly yours,

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Until next week…

Skye O’Malley Hart-Bowling
(the kitty, not the book)


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