Settling In

This week marks the second of what will be many TWO TRUTHS TUESDAYS. I think it’s time we settled in to a nice, familiar format. Two truths, followed by TEN THINGS. Short, sweet, simple. So, without further eloquence…

Truth One: Setting. It’s an important part of fiction writing. Whether your story needs a short, pithy jest about the color of the floor tile in the asylum, or your doorstopper novel demands paragraph upon paragraph and scene upon scene of setting, measuring how much to expand or how little to dribble out is key. That’s why you must know your audience. If you’re playing to Tolkien lovers, the more the merrier. Writing YA romance? Three pages of exhaustive setting infodumps is probably not going to work out.

Truth Two: Therapists sometimes need the same help as the people they’re helping. Whether you’re like me, and you experience empathy drain, or like other therapists who experience secondary trauma, you might need therapy yourself. There’s nothing wrong with that. Whether it’s having someone to spew life’s burdens to, or a mental health professional to delve deep into personal issues, the helpers are allowed to need help, and not be stigmatized for it.

TEN THINGS (about the past week):

1–What have I been reading? A lot of articles, blogs, and web content. I want to read Lovecraft Country before I see the show, and I don’t want to start-stop another book, so I’m waiting for that to arrive.

2–What have I been watching? Sadly, no more playoff hockey, but more Madam Secretary (no spoilers!), which I’m quite enjoying, and Umbrella Academy (no spoilers!), which I’ve slowly been getting into. (Spoiler warning! Read at your own risk or skip to #3) I have to admit, season 2 has some tropes I truly despise. The whole stuck in an asylum trope ended fairly quickly, but the HIDEOUS (not just in this show) “how we got here” trope almost made me stop watching. It’s been done to death, and I can’t stand it. I also don’t like that every season will be the team all scattered to start out and then dysfunctionally coming together. Still, I’m enjoying large parts of Umbrella Academy, and alternating between it and Madame Secretary.

3–What have I been researching? Fun internet finds like web comics and short reads, blogs and whatnot. Also, more fairy tale stuff.

4–What have I been writing? Not enough! I got down a few rough scenes in Collateral Healing, but simply haven’t had the time or energy to devote to making large progress. This must change!

5–Farmer’s markets are so crucial to my getting enough fruits and veggies.

6–Family is everything. Given a choice between all-day gaming and catching up with a cousin and his family, I chose the latter on Saturday. Got to see a lot of other family, too, including the kiddoes, and, hey, a swimming pool doesn’t hurt either!

7–Then again, gaming is important therapy for me, and a friend whose wife is out of town has some extra time, so card-driven war gaming was a welcome use of Sunday afternoon and into the evening.

8–I miss Mom. I usually get to see her every week, so a sucky side effect of a busy weekend is not getting to visit with her.

9–Fast food = not a good dinner strategy. On occasion, it won’t hurt you, but on multiple evenings, it’s a real killer. As if I didn’t already know that, but…

10–…if you can’t be smart, you gotta be tough 🙂

Talk about tough, this guy’s supposedly bad to the bone. I mean, his band is the Destroyers.

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