Comments: The Fast Train to Crazy Town

Hooray!! You're really going to write another book and are not pregnant after all. I thought all of the grompiness was about the book you were suppressing with the game show channel and mini-Twixes but I thought you already knew that during your reality-tv show blog last week? Why does the writerly life has to be so weird?? Congratulations on a great Chapter 1! Will we get exerpts from it next week?

Posted by Elizabeth at October 31, 2005 1:05 PM

I just...giant pink puffy heart you. Crazy and all. *smooches*

Posted by Amy-GO at October 31, 2005 1:10 PM

a)Ha! I was right. b)Scott, you are STILL so 'da man'! c)Joss, your drafting is like my revising. Okay, you've got me beat on the mental illness thing, but after several dozen read throughs of anything, it all starts to sound the same. After all, how many times can you read something before your brain cells fuse into a solid, non-perceiving lump?

Posted by David at October 31, 2005 1:22 PM

Congrats. Having a make-out-able Chapter One is a mega-accomplishment!

As to how not to get blindsided by yourself in the future, I'm not sure. Would it have changed anything if your family and friends had said to you a couple of days ago, "Ummmm, you're starting to draft a new novel, so you're about to have a mental breakdown that you think will be related to losing your keys but will actually be about THE BOOK."?

Posted by Edgy Mama at October 31, 2005 3:00 PM

Can I just tell you that you have made me feel SOOO much better about my ownself?

I do a version of this--and it does, in fact, FEEL quite like mental illness. Or how I imagine mental illness would feel. ;-)--only mine ALSO occurs after getting feedback on chapters/short stories. I get completely overwhelmed and excited all at once. I want to implement EVERYTHING my wise-critique people have suggested. And then... see, the same sentence will garner three entirely different opinions.

I will work myself into quite the froth, conclude I need to completely re-write the entire piece, change the verb tense, pov, and hell... why not the setting while we're at it? About, oh, mid-way through THAT exercise, I will conclude that this is a moot activity b/c the problem really is that I simply STINK and shouldn't be allowed near a keyboard or writing implement.

This whole thing will go on and on until I am literally on the floor, begging the gods to take from me the desire to write--since clearly, that is the answer to this problem and I could be happy if only I didn't WANT to do this.

Then... *cue angels singing* for some reason, I will get my head out of my hindparts and be able to see more clearly. I'll get a direction and begin actually writing things I won't later delete--and thus can finish whatever it is I'm working on.

But it's not a very efficient approach. And it happens EVERY time. And each and every time? I don't recognize it AT ALL.

And in the midst of the listed specific nonsense? I'll lose not only my keys, but have been known to misplace brassieres, VERY important paperwork, money, checks, a single shoe from a pair--always a pair that I dearly love... I could go on. I also cry at random, uncontrollably and get, well, er, mad at people who love me. For really no REAL reason.

And while this is actually HAPPENING??? I have NO sense that it's relative to the work.

And me? I'm actually one of the most self-aware people you'll ever meet. [No, seriously. I have a trophy and everything.]

So don't be too hard on yourself for not seeing this.

But thanks again for sharing this on your blog. I feel just scads better. I'm sitting here thinking, 'See! I'm not like dangerous, special floors of the hospital crazy. This is just writer crazy. I mean, Joshilyn does it and her book rocked.'

You've just performed a public service. :-)


P.S. Chapter 1--SOOOO exciting!!!

Posted by Alicia at October 31, 2005 4:00 PM

Jos. Make yourself an index card for the refrigerator door that says WHEN I START GOOGLING MY DREAMS AND SNOTTING THINGS OUT MY NOSE I SHOULD WRITE A BOOK


Posted by Jilly at October 31, 2005 9:24 PM

Oh, Please don't spare us the CRAZY. I need the CRAZY. It makes me feel less alone. Major congrats on Chapter One!

Posted by Carolyn Hueston at October 31, 2005 9:57 PM

Jesus Bug? I...huh. Can't wait to see that one.
And overwrought or not, the birthing metaphor is apt. I always puked during labor. It's not labor until you've seen what I had for breakfast, I always say.
I never say that, actually. But I could. It would be true.
Happy book, dear.

Posted by Kira at November 1, 2005 1:08 AM

*petpet* You're pretty, Tulip.

Posted by Mir at November 1, 2005 7:55 AM

At the risk of having thugs knock on my door--you don't remember it, just like women block out the worst of pregnancy/labor so they will go on to have more kids ;)

Do you think thugs can be bribed with Halloween candy?

Posted by Angel at November 1, 2005 11:29 AM

I'm still stuck on the Jesus Bug Metaphor. Like, is there something called a Jesus Bug, or is it a metaphor concerning Jesus that hinges on an insect reference? I feel so dumb...

Posted by Cornelia Read at November 1, 2005 8:15 PM

So apparently in Jakarta, "Kaki Berbulu Membantu 'Jesus bug' Berjalan di atas Air." Which clears THAT up. Thank you, Google.

Of course in Market Indonesian, they use the same word for milk and boob, and double words up if you want a lot of something, so to order coffee with a lot of milk you say "kopi susu," which is kind of like saying "coffee with tatas." Only nobody is embarrassed or anything.

Wait, I think dinner is defrosted...

Posted by Cornelia Read at November 1, 2005 9:38 PM

All of this fills me with an amazing amount of hope. If THIS is Joshilyn who has written a wonderful novel that I love and has more on the way... perhaps I am still a potential novelist. I find so much delight reading your blog that I am making my way through your archives, month by month. Thank you!

Posted by Tracy at November 2, 2005 9:44 AM