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It’s funny how I keep saying I’m going to write here more, and then I keep finding excuses in my life to not write more blog posts.  It’s almost funny, except for the part where it kind of makes me look like a flake.  Which is unfortunate.  So I guess here’s an update on what I’ve been doing recently.

That 100 movies thing I came up with on a whim last time is still ongoing, surprisingly.  I know it’s only been like ten days, but this is, regardless, a big deal for me.  As I mentioned, I can kind of be a flake sometimes.  I have a bad habit of setting lofty goals and being terrible about keeping them.  The fact that I’m still going after just a week is amazing.  There hasn’t been a lot of rhyme or reason to my film selections so far, but that’s fine.  Like I said, I’m just excited that I haven’t given up yet.

Another thing I do in my spare time during the spring and summer is garden.  I’m not actually very good at it, but I grow flowers and other things. This year I’ve got a couple vegetables going on the patio–a bell pepper and a cherry tomato.  Both are doing pretty well; just this past weekend I got four tomatoes off that plant.  I had a couple of them in a salad today and they were quite tasty.  I also have a strawberry plant that I planted last year that’s doing very well; hopefully I’ll be able to get some fruit off it before the local bunnies do.  On the flower side of things, I’ve planted some cosmos from seed that are also doing well.  They haven’t budded yet, but I’m hoping they will soon.

I haven’t been up to much else worth expounding on.  I’m knitting again, on this Star Wars scarf pattern.  The end result is going to be a gift for my brother.  I’ve started watching Parks and Recreation on Netflix; it’s been highly enjoyable so far, though I’m not that far in.  The writing thing hasn’t been going so well, unfortunately.  I haven’t been making time to write at home, which of course may also be because I don’t have much time in the day, period.  I’m trying to work on getting up earlier, but it’s mostly not going so well.  Getting up a little after 11am today was an accomplishment, let’s put it that way.

I don’t want to turn into a broken and untrustworthy record, but I am going to try and make a genuine effort to post more.  If I’m going to hit 100 posts by year’s end, I am going to have to improve my output.  So here’s to hoping, I suppose.

(5/100)

I bet you thought I forgot about the blog again. While I admit it hasn’t been at the forefront of my mind, I promise I haven’t totally forgotten about it. I do want to get back in the habit of updating again, which means the pressure is on me to stick to it. This is what this is.

So what have I been up to? Partly it’s been a slightly soul-crushing apathy, either due to my depression or the medications I’m taking for my depression (oh joy). It’s hard to write when you don’t care about anything enough to get started. It’s hard to really do anything, because it doesn’t feel like any of it matters. Which leads into my next thing, which is that I haven’t done anything really important or interesting the last couple of weeks. I’ve been walking at the mall in an attempt to inject some physical activity into my otherwise sedentary life. I’m trying to write a silly fanfic to prove to myself that I’m still capable of actually producing fiction. Sometimes I go to the movies or watch one at home. I haven’t even been reading as much.

I’m not sure what my point here was supposed to be. Maybe explaining that my life is so boring as an excuse for not updating? Which is a pretty flimsy excuse, since I updated regularly in most of 2013 when my life was just as boring and depressing. (Even more depressing, since I was on crappier meds back then.) My biggest problem is that I make excuses. I didn’t get out of bed until nearly 1pm today because I kept finding excuses to ignore my alarm and curl up under the covers again. I don’t do a lot of things because I decide to refresh Tumblr or tab open TV Tropes instead.

Basically what I’m trying to say is that I am the queen of doing the easy, lazy thing instead.

I didn’t mean to turn this into an interrogation of my bad habits. This is what happens when I don’t have a set topic; I dive right into being self-critical.

I made a list of things I want to do this summer. Movies to see, TV shows to catch up on, plus some other stuff. It’s only sort of happening at the moment. I’m trying to catch up on Hannibal, since it’s just started its third season. It’s taking a while, since Hannibal is not the lightest of shows and thus not easy to binge watch. (This is more or less the reason why I haven’t finished Daredevil, either.) I’m five episodes away from being caught up, so hopefully I can cross that off my list here shortly. And that’s just one part of the list. And for some reason I’ve just now got this mad idea to watch 100 different movies over 100 days. Just because. And who knows, I might just do it, even though another one of my bad habits is setting goals I can’t possibly hope to keep.

This is what this is. I do things. Mostly they’re boring and unimportant. But I suppose you’re here because you’re interested anyway. I’m going to try to be better about updating here in the future. Expect more rambling posts like this one.

Also hopefully I’ll get my act together about Doctor Who reviews. Maybe.

(4/100)

This is one of those stories that I have trouble talking about, mostly because I like it so much but I can’t articulate fully what it is I like about it. Or maybe I can, since that’s what I’m about to attempt in this review. This pair of episodes does a lot of things very well, to my view, at least, so I suppose I’ll try to talk about that.

Perhaps most significantly, this episode sees the return of River Song, last seen in the Library two-parter in Series 4. We learn a lot more about her character this time around, too. The cold open starts with her femme fatale-ing her way through a spaceship to leave a message for the Doctor (cleverly intercut with the Doctor and Amy’s discovery of said message), which is rather a far cry from the university archaeologist we first met. We also learn much later on that she’s a criminal, imprisoned for the murder of a good man.

Given the benefit of hindsight, it’s easy to see how River’s character fits together, but it’s still intriguing to think about how these revelations might have looked to the average viewer in 2010, seeing these episodes for the first time. They certainly add another layer of mystery to a character already cloaked in it, which may have been frustrating to some.

These episodes also see another return, this one of Moffat’s infamous Weeping Angels. This story was compared (I believe by Moffat himself) as the Aliens to “Blink”‘s Alien, which I think is apt in more ways than one. Their abilities are expanded and their numbers increased considerably, raising the stakes for our heroes and giving us a few moments of horror to boot.

Some of these things work better than others. The Angels messing with Amy’s head doesn’t quite follow through in the same way the whole “image of an Angel” thing does, but it adds a veneer of suspense to the whole story. Robbing Amy of her one protection in a forest full of Angels makes her shaky journey to the control deck all the more nailbiting.

Which brings us to probably the most controversial thing done with the Angels in this story: we see the Angels move. In “Blink”, an unspoken rule was that the audience’s gaze held the Angels at bay as well as any character’s would—thus why Sally Sparrow is not attacked when her back is turned on them early in that episode. This time, at a crucial, climactic moment, our gaze holds no power. I know this was a dealbreaker for a lot of people. I think this moment works on a slight thematic level—at the moment when Amy Pond is helpless, we who most want her to make it through are powerless as well, giving the moment a horrifying inevitability.

One of the elements I rather adore, however, is the reveal of the Angels near the end of “Time of Angels.” The answer is delivered to us some minutes earlier, when the Doctor starts talking about the two-headed Aplans. It’s something I rather love about the way Moffat writes stories—very often he’ll leave the answers we’re looking for hidden in plain sight, ready for any keenly thinking viewer to pick up on. It’s a sign of the esteem he has for the audience’s intelligence, something greatly appreciated.

Another thing I liked was this story’s willingness to crack open (if you’ll pardon the pun) the series’ lightly hinted overall plot. The crack we first saw in young Amelia’s bedroom has been following our protagonists the last couple episodes, and here it forms a major part of “Flesh and Stone”‘s plot. While its cause remains a mystery, we do learn what the crack is: the end of the universe, time itself running out and eating away at the fabric of reality and history. Most significantly, we discover when the crack-causing explosion takes place—the day of Amy’s wedding in the present day. The episode answers questions as well as raising them, and leaves open the possibility that these cracks will have a bearing on the stories to come.

On the whole, I think these are a pair of brilliant episodes. They move along at a great pace, and accomplish a lot with both character and story.

(3/100)

I just spent a couple hours reading through old blog posts (mostly Doctor Who reviews, but even so). It got me thinking about how I was supposed to start posting more on this blog this year, that everything was going to change and I was going to take control or something like that. Basically, that I was going to be a blogger again.

I think I want that to happen now.

I set my goal for 100 entries this year. I think that’s quite doable, especially if I get started on the Doctor Who reviews again. And who knows, maybe reviews of other things as well. I like to talk about media, that much is clear. Hannibal’s coming back for its third season this year, maybe I’ll write about that. (Never mind I need to catch up on the second season still.) Who knows. The possibilities are endless, of course.

I might be using this as a platform to talk about my personal life a bit more, particularly my depression. I might even talk about writing. I’ve been trying to do more of it lately, and it’s working out so-so so far. But I might as well talk about things since I’ve got this platform, even if they’re inane things that no one actually cares about!

It’s my blog and I’ll write what I want to, write what I want tooooo…

On the whole I don’t know what I’ll be doing with this. I only know that I want to do something, and I will try to make that something count. Even if no one gives a damn. Maybe especially if no one gives a damn. Because at least I care, and at least I’m trying. I suppose that’s really what this is all about—caring enough to try, and keep on going.

So expect to see more from me in the coming days and weeks. And hopefully this time, I won’t be unknowingly lying to you. Hopefully.

(2/100)

I know, I know, you’re as surprised as me that I’m back and writing about Doctor Who. I sort of left things off in quite a place, didn’t I? Right in the middle of Series 5, without so much as a word of warning that I’d be away for well over a year. I suppose I’m a bit like the Doctor in that regard, aren’t I? Going away for, oh a week, and then not turning up until fourteenish months later. All of that aside, I am back, and hopefully for good.

The plan for the foreseeable future, at least as regards this particular output of mine, is to review one episode a week, picking up where we left off, with Time of Angels, and so on. It should last me through the year, so long as I keep on top of it. And I am hoping that I will be able to keep on top of it. There are just enough episodes left that I should be able to cover them in fifty two weeks.

If you’re looking for a recap of where we left off, here’s the general gist of things: The Eleventh Hour is a piece of total perfection that cannot be fully appreciated by mere human words; The Beast Below is by no means perfect, but still plenty good (even Steven Moffat’s worst episode is better by far than most writers’ best); and Victory of the Daleks serves a necessary purpose for the future of Doctor Who, and yet manages some good character stuff beneath the rather rote storyline. We’re all in agreement about that, yes? … Probably not, but that’s where we are right now, and so hopefully by the end of this week, you’ll be looking at a nice shiny review of Time of Angels.

And that’s all I have to say about that.

(1/100)

All things considered, I probably should not have done NaNoWriMo this year. I have just not had my head in the game as far as writing is concerned this year, and while my depression is usually in a tauntingly close holding pattern, it likes to swoop down on me when I least expect it. I was not in any fit state to write fifty thousand words of any story, but some pig-headed part of me insisted that I had to. This was my tenth outing; I had won every year previous to this, every year since I’d found out about NaNo and decided to join in. I had to do this. One more time if nothing else. For old time’s sake.

I wrote about my whole struggle to decide on here, as you may recall. I settled on a story–a rehash/rewrite of my 2008 novel, Luna, which I rechristened as Daughter of the Sun–and on November 1, I wrote…

…nothing.

This was actually pretty much how I sloped through the month. I would slack off, try to catch up and fail miserably, and then spend the next several days moping about how behind I was and how I was never going to catch up. If you look at my profile on the NaNo site, you will see that my word count rises in fits and starts, and only when I really wanted it to. (You will note that, in the end, I REALLY wanted it to.)

Looking back, I can’t even say what I actually doing with that time. I know I spent the vast majority of it in bed, either fooling around on the internet or sleeping or just laying there and feeling bad about everything I possibly could. This is what depression does, especially when you give yourself another thing to not do and to feel bad about not doing. Sometimes I opened up my novel and sort of looked at it, but I didn’t work on it. I occasionally lurked off to the library to write words in bursts of a thousand or so (by hand, even!), but as the end of the month drew nearer, I was stalled somewhere around 15k.

I don’t know what finally lit the fire under my ass. It was probably the floating spectre of FAILURE hanging over my head like the nasty sign it’s been to me since middle school. I have done my level best to avoid being A Failure for years, and I wasn’t going to let 15k be the best I could muster for my tenth NaNoWriMo.

So I wrote. And then I didn’t write for a couple of days.

And then I did that exact thing over again, and just for funsies I had a huge, depressing cryfest that didn’t help anything, because there’s just nothing like trying to write and not being able to because your body feels weird and the words aren’t coming, and the words that do come don’t fit together and your fingers won’t obey your thoughts. And so on. (Getting yelled at also doesn’t help.)

I wrote a lot the day before Thanksgiving, then nothing at all on the actual day–which would make sense, except that we didn’t actually have Thanksgiving dinner until Friday. (There was a scheduling snafu. Irrelevant.) And on Friday I wrote nearly ten thousand words.

I was at 36k at midnight on November 30th, and at 11:59pm, I had reached 50k. It was, in so many words, one hell of a day. I even had an underdog-y sort of moment with just a few hours ago, after I’d accidentally had one of my trademarked Accidental Naps and felt like I couldn’t surmount the words I needed to reach that much vaunted goal. And then I did it anyway.

There was probably a better way to write this, but since I’ve stopped keeping a journal (to my own dismay, believe me), I don’t really have a detailed log of my days. Things happened, and more things happened, and against all odds and some well respected areas of reason, I won the day.

And that’s all that matters.

(202/260)

It snowed and iced over the weekend, which I think I talked about before. The ground is more or less still covered, though the main roads are clear. It’s still really freaking cold outside, though, which made clearing my car off this afternoon a bit of an adventure. I should have wrapped up in a scarf as well as my coat and hat, because my face was a little chapped afterwards. It took half an hour to smack and brush and scrape all the ice off my car, though it was kind of fun to break a layer of ice and discovered snow powdering underneath it. It all got brushed onto the ground, though, because I had places to go.

I meant to do more today than I actually got around to. This is mostly because I am lazy. The day isn’t over yet, but I’m not sure I want to go and do anything else after all. There’s always tomorrow, isn’t there? Another day to sleep and waste away, and I get to the end of it wondering where the hell I messed up. (I messed up by being in bed, by slumping down the pillows until I was laying there, feeling tired, and so I took my glasses off and burrowed into the pillow and slept.) I spend more time twittering over whether I should do something that I often end up doing nothing at all.

That got unexpectedly depressing.

I could make it more depressing by going on and on and on about what I’m not doing, but you didn’t come here for that. My next entry, later tonight, will not be depressing. Or maybe it will be depressing in a different way, I don’t know. I am just banging these out without any sort of preparation, because I told myself I was going to write 260 entries and I am /so damn close/ that I am not going to let it slip away from me. Let me do this one thing, let me accomplish this simple thing that is, okay, maybe not so simple as it seems this late in the year. But I’m going to try anyway.

Maybe I will write entries on all those things I said I would. I don’t know. But I’m going to keep talking about stuff, repeatedly, until the end of the year. And maybe–hopefully–I’ll hit that magic number.

(201/260)