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Below are the 18 most recent journal entries recorded in Steering the Craft's LiveJournal:

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Monday, October 25th, 2004
12:20 am
I hope there are no adjectives hiding in here.

Exercise 5Collapse )
Sunday, October 17th, 2004
10:19 pm
Tuesday, October 5th, 2004
9:23 pm
Exercise 3
Exercise 3, the longCollapse )

and shortCollapse )
Sunday, October 3rd, 2004
10:28 pm
Friday, September 24th, 2004
1:41 pm
Please forgive me for my slackitude. I have been slain by jackhammers, menstruation, and homeschooling issues. BUT. Now we can get back on the craft, aaaaaaall aboard, because I have written a SCHEDULE. It takes us through the middle of January, and I have sorted it all out by length of chapter, difficulty of exercises, likelihood that revision will be interesting or desireable, and co-existence with the holidays.

Here it is:

Chapter 3, Sentence Length and Complex Syntax
Read, complete Exercise 3, "Short and Long," and the optional revision if you care to, and post by Saturday October 2.

Chapter 4, Repetition.
Read, complete three parts of Exercise 4 and post during the week ending Saturday October 9.

Chapter 5, Adjective and Adverb
Read, complete Exercise 5, "Chastity," and post by Saturday October 16.


two whole weeks for Chapter 6, which is also meatier than Chapters 4&5.

Chapter 6, Subject Pronoun and Verb
Read, complete some variant of exercise 6 and post by Saturday October 30.


Chapters 7 and 8 are interrelated, Chapter 9 is somewhat complex and difficult, and November and December are going to be superbusy for everybody. So I suggest:

Chapter 7 and 8 - read at your own pace, complete exercises at your own pace, post sometime during the month of November.

Chapter 9 - read at your own pace, complete exercises at your own pace, post sometime during the month of December.

Then everyone recover from their hangovers and:

Chapter 10, Crowding and Leaping
Read, complete Exercise 10, "A Terrible Thing to Do," and post by January 8.
Tuesday, September 7th, 2004
10:32 pm
I haven't figured out how to comment on people's writing yet. The online medium feels strange, or perhaps it's the exercises we're doing which are more about experimentation. I imagine that as we get deeper into the book I will find a way to offer comments that I think would be useful to the writer.

Glad to be here in any case, although in my usual fashion, I feel intimidated and very self-concious. Such is my life.
Monday, September 6th, 2004
9:30 am
number two
the crowd surged inward pressing her into strangers on all sides she felt the wet hairs of a big mans sweaty back on her chest and the hard nipples of a scantily clad woman on her back her arms were pressed by flesh and cloth she was uncomfortable and looked up to try and find some bearing in the oppressively hot sky she smelled french fries and thai skewers sweat and patchouli and the reflected heat of baking pavement the booth was just a little to her right her intention was to make quick side steps until she got there she pushed a little with her shoulder until the two people closest to her gave a little so she could move her whole body through she finally spotted the vinyl covered ledge of the booth and saw two slightly disinterested women look up at her to check her level of engagement they were used to people coming up for air without really being interested in what they represented in this case a local sperm bank to get them on her side she jokingly asked if they had any sperm with them she laughed a little too loud thank god for the crowds she didn't think anyone heard her she decided it was pointless took a deep breath and then turned around to face the crowd again wondering why she went through this year after year when would she learn
Sunday, September 5th, 2004
10:05 pm
Tuesday, August 31st, 2004
12:53 am
Exercise No. 2 - again

when you first step backstage it’s a shock therapy a sudden slap of sound jolts of frantic heels shouts of panic rhinestoned to razor edge the thrumming vibration of fervor and glitter-sharp chaos of color all the girls stretching warming preening in a nest of sequins bobby pins hairnets gel gloss blush they pucker fasten slip zip practice steps and turns stepping over them on the floor turned and pressed against walls flitting circling the nervous cage chirping in groups the knots of girls and high voices flowing and fluttering all of them bright as a fever-dream unreal as a blitzkrieg of birds writhing mass of bodies like birds pink blue black birds but the red is what hits hottest a vibrance that imprints the red stings with intensity with unabashed vitality heart red president’s red rich red blood red that blurs and a blunt rush of wind when the call for some of them comes time to go girls
Friday, August 27th, 2004
3:05 pm
Exercise 2 in which I am reminded that punctuation is my FRIEND
late on an August afternoon blue sky before and threatening gray at our heels coming back from the store into camp and it's starting to rain a fine mist in the air makes the bags slippery makes the grass slippery careful careful don't drop the eggs a rumble of thunder in the distance and a drumming sound moving across the grass a puff of air billows the wet canvas and then it hits driving us before it driving the breeze before it truck doors slamming as we dive into the kitchen skidding in new mud
11:09 am
Other Housekeeping
Deadline for Exercise 2 is Monday, September 6.

If you want more stuff in the interests, plz comment.

I wish I were in PR with Lin.

Also plz discuss: should we close membership at any point? madwriter and linaelyn are still waiting on their books.
11:07 am
The Punctuation Post
Everyone ought to have read pgs. 31-34 by now. And now as directed on pg. 34, we will discuss punctuation. I will put my own discussion in the comments.
Friday, August 20th, 2004
12:33 am
Due to the minions being away at camp, I have been forgetting to do anything that isn't connected to cleaning out their room. As this community is not connected to their room I have forgotten to remind people to check in and read the first two chapters and think about posting the next exercise. So am I going to call this week a wash, and beginning next Monday we will all have two weeks to post and comment on Exercise 2, I Am Garcia Marquez. All I ask of you this week is that you comment here and tell me whether you now own the book.
Friday, August 13th, 2004
10:46 am
Friday, August 6th, 2004
12:27 am
Exercise No. 2

Read more...Collapse )

I initially worked on this intending to do the first exercise -- with the emphasis on sound -- but it somehow morphed into the second, and I couldn't seem to force it back even after playing with it repeatedly.
Wednesday, August 4th, 2004
10:22 pm
11:08 pm
A story meant to be told aloud (with optional waddling)
This is actually a story composed to be told aloud, and only written down after the fact. To get the full impact, you have to imagine it not only with voice, but with arm waving and movement and a proper squat-and-waddle at the end...


So one year, long ago, I went up to Coopers' Lake for Pennsic. And that year, long ago, I had -- for the first time -- a beautiful period pavilion of my very own. And having a beautiful period pavilion meant that I needed beautiful Stuff to go in it. So I furnished my beautiful period pavilion with oriental rugs, and with carved and painted side tables, and with chairs and cushions and tapestries, and with hanging candelabras, and with clever candle lamps and oil lights. And on the wall above the side table in my beautiful pavilion I hung my husband's handmade sword in its hand-carved scabbard. But in the back corner, where no one would see, I made my bed on the ground, because a proper bed was the one thing I did not have.

So the first night after we pitched the pavilion, my lord husband stayed with me and all was well. But the second night, he went home, and left me, my 6 year old daughter, and a friend to occupy our campsite, because it was setup week when only the truly lucky get to be at War. And that night I put my daughter to bed in her miniature Viking tent, which lay next to my pavilion, and much later after the fire died down I put myself to bed as well.

As is the way of women, I knew that every night that week I would wake up at 4 a.m. and have to go to the privy in the pitch black dark. And since all the lovely things in the beautiful period pavilion were still scattered across the floor, I thought I should leave a night candle lit, so I wouldn't fall down and break myself or worse yet run into an upright and bring the pavilion down on my head.

I had candle lanterns, including one bought just a few weeks earlier. It had a wooden frame, with a clever little door, and plexiglass windows on each side. I'd been a little worried about the plexiglass, but I'd tested it earlier and the plastic didn't get even a little bit warm, so it seemed okay. I put my little votive candle in the lantern, lit it, set it down on a decorative brass tray, and went to bed.

Sure enough, I woke in the pit of the night, in that early morning hour when the grass is cold and soaking wet, even the heartiest partiers have gone to bed, and the stars are just beginning to fade. And I grabbed my robe and went out to the privy, leaving the door flap open just a little behind me and the candle burning very low.

I came back, tied the door shut behind me, hung up my robe and as I made it to bed realized that I wasn't alone. Something was in there with me, flying semi-hysterical loops around the inside of the tent. At first I thought it was a bird, but after a few second I realized it was a bat. I'd opened the door at Bat Go Home time and some bat had taken my light-colored pavilion and dark-colored door for a hillside and a cave.

So I thought to myself, I'll just lie here and go back to sleep, and in a while it will get light and the bat will settle somewhere, and I can roust it out when I can see. But the bat was flying a loop that went from high along the ridgepole to low along the floor, doing that ground-skimming thing they do so well, and everytime it went by overhead squeaking in distress it was so close I could feel the wind from its leathery little wings. So finally I got up and went back to the door and opened it (sure the whole time that, with my huge mane of loose hair, I was going to be the first person in history to really truly have a bat fly into her hair). And I took the flap in one hand and my hair in the other and said okay, now, Bat, prove to me that mammals really are smarter than birds! and sure enough they are, because the bat flew right out the door. And I went back to sleep.

The next night, I lit my night candle and laid down to sleep, and sure enough, I woke somewhere in the pit of the night, in that early morning hour when the grass is cold and soaking wet, even the heartiest partiers have gone to bed, and the stars are just beginning to fade. And I grabbed my robe and went out to the privy, but this time I closed the doorflap and tied it shut behind me. And when I came back to the pavilion, the candle was burning very low. I thought to myself, I could blow that out, because it's just starting to get light. And then I thought no, if you do that, you'll have to scrape wax out of the lantern, whereas if you let it burn down, it'll be clean for tomorrow night. And I hung up my robe, laid down and went back to sleep.

About 7 a.m., I was lying in bed warm and snuggly, and the parts of my brain were arguing. One part was thinking how nice it was to be asleep, and not to have to get up, and the other part, the little reptilian hindbrain that never sleeps, was screaming "IF YOU DON'T WAKE UP YOU'RE GONNA DIE!!!" So I sat bolt upright in bed and there, on the side table, up against the wall of the pavilion, was a pillar of flame two feet tall.

I leapt out of bed, reached through the flame, grabbed my husband's sword and scabbard and threw them across the tent, and grabbed the metal tray the whole flaming mess was sitting on and set it down on the floor where it could burn straight up and not reach anything. Then I untied the doorflap, grasped the tray, crouched down and waddled backwards out the door, holding the tray low in front of me as far from the top of the door opening as possible. Threw it down on the wet grass away from the tent and said "Burn there! you son of a bitch!!" Grabbed the fire extinguisher, pulled the pin, pulled the trigger, and ... nothing happened. So I dropped the extinguisher, grabbed a bucket, filled it from the ice chest, threw the water on the flaming mess, and as the flames died ... realized that I was standing in the middle of camp in broad daylight stark naked.
5:31 pm
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