Author Archives: Katelyn Lea

love and imperfection

People will always let you down.
Love is seldom forever.
The hurt will always come.

I don’t want to know one part of those closest to me.

I don’t want to see just one facet, one side of them.  I want to see the ugly parts as well.

The whole picture, that’s what I’m after.  The multi-layered biopsy of the soul.

I can’t be content to hear things like I love you and I would never hurt you anymore.  Too often these sentiments have turned out to be lies.  Maybe they weren’t intended to be lies, but time always tells the ultimate truth.

Perhaps this stems from my childhood.  From never hearing I love you out of my parents, from never feeling at ease in my own home, from living with near-constant chaos and animosity.  Or, perhaps the root of my insecurity can be traced to my failed marriage, or the many lovers who followed in quick succession that promised me the world and gave me shit, or who promised nothing and left me empty.  Maybe – probably – it’s because I just lost something precious that belonged to someone I love dearly.

But, as Kurt Vonnegut once said, we are trapped in the amber of the moment.  And in the amber of the moment, I am insecure.

I find ways into the secret places people where people think they have their privacy.  They assume that just because it’s password protected they have an almost god-given right to absolute secrecy.  So they say whatever they please, with no thought for consequences, and there I begin to piece together the less desirable truth.

I wish there was a way to become more accustomed to betrayal, but it’s like that feeling of vertigo you get when you take a step expecting solid ground and find air: it’s always unexpected; the heart always skips a beat as the body panics and tries to work out a way to minimize the impending damage.

But I don’t mean to say that I can’t see the full scale of the bad and weigh it against the good.

An ounce of goodness is worth a great deal more than an ounce of badness, and so in the end it becomes a calculation of risk.

Recently, I learned that the badness drastically outshines the goodness in one of those people who are supposed to love and care for me unconditionally.

I’ve also begun to piece together a picture of someone I want to love unconditionally.  It’s hard, though, because the initial feeling of euphoric love wants you to believe in fate and synchronicity and meaningfulness, and it’s hard to feel that blind euphoria erode into a clear-sighted but happy contentment.

In the amber of this moment, I am scared.

I know time will reveal what the amber hid from my sight.  Betrayal is almost sure to follow.

Because hurt is inevitable, people will always let you down, and love is seldom forever.

The trick is to find a balance between love and imperfection, to see things for what they are and nothing more, and move forward the best way you can figure.

And hope.  You also need hope.


there is no why

Religion is based on an ignorance of nature and psychology.

Long ago, people wondered why it rains, or why people die.  They felt grief, and consoled themselves with the idea of an afterlife.  They saw the sun move across the sky and wondered who put it there, and how.  Life all around and no explanation as to why.  A man once said Homo sapiens wasn’t an accurate description of humanity, but rather Homo religiosus.  Not the upright man, but the religious man.  All over the world, throughout history, there is a religious up-welling that permeates the development of human society.  But as we move forward and expand our knowledge of the world around us, we don’t need God to tell us why.  Indeed, the most commonly heard argument for God is “someone had to put all this beauty here for us to enjoy!”  But really, it’s all chance.  We got lucky.  We evolved out of primordial gook out of sheer luck on a planet that wasn’t too hot or too cold, had just the right amount of gasses in the atmosphere, and the right kind of stuff growing along side us.

Someone asks, Why me?  Why am I here?  Why did my marriage fall apart?  Why did my child die?  Why did my car break down?

They say, Everything happens for a purpose.  It’s like mommy kissing a boo-boo: you think it works, so in your own head it does.

There is no why.  There is no purpose.  There is no grand design.  Life is a series of accidents we happen to get caught up in.  Sometimes happy accidents, sometimes lamentable ones.  The human experience is a series of cause and effect, consequences to our own actions or actions taken by others that we must deal with.

The secret to life is there is no damn secret.  Life is what you make of it, it only has the meaning you give it.

Love is important.  Love and sex and happiness, those are the key to making the most of it.

Everything else is up to you.


a blip in the flatline of my hiatus

[in]security*

i went to church once.  the pastor brought a piece of wood, some nails, and a hammer up to the pulpit.  he called me up to drive the nail into the wood.  it was hard.  i didn’t want to hammer my finger at first, and then the nail wouldn’t go in straight, and i couldn’t swing the hammer hard enough.  i handed the board back to him.  he said, pull the nail out.  that was equally as hard, but i retrieved the nail and handed everything back to him.

he said, get rid of that hole.

i said, i can’t.

hurtful things are like nails, he said.  when we hurt someone we drive a nail into their heart.  you can pull the nail out, but the hole is still there.  you can cover it up, sand down the rough edges, and paint over it, but the hole will always be there.

i was pregnant.  we stared incredulously at positive pregnancy tests.  we talked about names, looked at baby clothes in the mall, cringed at price tags in baby sections, and smiled despite people’s thoughtless words.  a few weeks later, we were holding our breath as a doctor searched for the flicker of a heart beat.  today, there is no more baby.

for a while, my insecurities were gone.  hope had numbed the pain of past hurt.  now it’s like i’m waking up still a little drunk from a night of trying to forget.

i’m insecure about my body.  about money.  about my worth as a person.  about love.  maybe i don’t deserve this.  i’m probably going to fuck it up.  he’s going to regret this.  maybe he regrets it already.

part of me knows it’s irrational.  i read into things way too much.  i’m constantly looking for affirmation of my fears, trying to keep my guard up so i can be prepared for the inevitable hurt.  but focusing on the possibility of failure never led anyone to victory, and right now is not my past.

i’m abandoning salvation.  i was going to give casey nine months to clean up the town.  nine months because cherry is pregnant with the native’s baby and if casey didn’t drive out the bad guy the baby would be killed.  i was going to give myself something to focus on so maybe i would still have the drive to write between feedings and diaper changes and whatever.  but there is no baby, so there is no salvation.

maybe i’ll write a story about a heroine who overcomes her insecurity.  i’ll make her do something completely out of her comfort zone, and i’ll put the life of someone she loves on the line.  i’ll drive nails into her and leave her to rip them out.

i think i’m actually going to start on that right now.


HIATUS *sadface

I regret to announce that I’ll be on a writing hiatus for a while, at least on TMD.  Which isn’t to say I won’t be writing at all.  Hopefully I’ll be writing quite a bit without the distractions the Internet lends toward, just as soon as I get over my lingering aversion to writing anything longhand.  But for now, I’m entering an in between phase wherein I’ll either be banned from access to the internet where I live or waiting for internet service to start in my new home.

But rest assured, I’m far too full of myself for this hiatus to last long, and I’ll have lots to say when I return.

Adieu, Constant Reader.
Until next time.


Brittle Bullet, part one

**disclaimer and why I’m writing this in the first place

The high grass was brown and brittle with the onset of autumn; Naota’s breath came out in whispy white puffs of air.  He lay prone in the grass next to Haruko, guns poised and ready to fire.

“Ta-kun, we’re surrounded,” said Haruko.
“It’s a full scale attack.  They’ve got snipers, too!”
“Snipers are always so annoying, you know?”
“If we move, they’ll fire.”
“But we gotta do something.”

Naota took Haruko’s gun sat up on his knees.  “You’re right,” he said with resolve.  “I’ll draw their fire. It’s dangerous, so–”

“That’s the idea!” Haruko cried out.  Naota’s jaw dropped.  “This is your final battle.  Go and die to prove that you love me!”  And before Naota could react, Haruko kicked him hard in the ass, propelling him forward from his awkward stance, into dangers unknown.

~

The day before was when it all started.  Naota sat at the kitchen table with his grandfather watching some old shoot-em-up movie.  Someone’s brother was dying, a flock of pidgeons obscured the scene depicting the pair’s last words when Haruko screamed.  Neither Naota nor Grandpa noticed, until Naota’s father, Kamon, came crashing through the kitchen door and into the television.

“Hey, what are you doing?” cried Naota.  He had been growing increasingly weary of his father since Haruko had come to live with them.  It was like the more daffy Kamon went over Haruko, the more immature and crazy he became.  Increasingly, Naota had begun to feel like the head of the family.  Even Grandpa seemed almost like a ghost, there but silent.

“Haruko-chan!  Play nice now,” Kamon implored.

Naota looked through the broken door at Haruko, who weilded a BB gun pointed directly at Kamon.  “Never in a million years will you get anything from me but an ass full of lead, compadre!”

“Ow! Ow! Ow!” Kamon cried out as a shower of BB bullets pelted him in the back, legs, and – of course – ass.  “Why so cruel, Haruko-chan?”

Kanti, meanwhile, stood at the sink doing dishes in a frilly white apron that had once belonged to Naota’s mother.  He’s the only one who does anything useful around here, Naota said to himself.  Quiet, obedient, hard working.  The robot’s the only one who does anything at all around here.

“What’s with the jacket?” Naota asked his father.

“Ah, this red jacket you mean?” Kamon crooned.  “Why?  Do you prefer the green one, Naota-kun?   Hm, hm?  You like the other version, huh?  The ‘Castle of Caliostro’ version, huh?  When did you become such a hotshot preppy type?  Anyway, Monkey-sensei prefers the red one, you know!  No matter what he says now, we can’t do anything about it…  Hey!  Where are you going!?!  Naota-kun!  Naota-kun!”

But Naota wasn’t listening.  He walked out of the kitchen and down the hall, enjoying the stolen feeling of solitude in the dark as he thumped up the steps and into his room. As he threw his bedroom door open, he took a breath, ready to lay into Haruko if she was there.  And she was — in nothing but a towel, perhaps readying herself for a bath, holding the cat, Miyu-Miyu up in the air and wiggling this way and that, talking to it: “What!?!  You’re saying I have personal feelings for him?  I don’t think so!  Well, the reason this mission has been delayed is because the channel to N.O. is still open.  It’s not about liking or disliking.”  She paused and shook the cat.  “Damn!  The connection is dead!”  She tossed the cat into Naota’s swivel chair and turned toward the door.  “Oh!” she said, her tone changing from angry to innocent and bubbly.  “Were you listening?”

Naota sighed and closed the door, his face flushed.  “Why don’t you put on some clothes?” he said.  “Is someone in here?”

Haruko smiled mischeviously.

“What?” Naota demanded.

Haruko picked the BB gun up from on top of the dresser and pointed it at him.

“What are you doing?!” Naota demanded.

She pelted him with bullets, laughing maniacally.  Naota turned away from the bullet spray and cried out in pain.  “Okay, okay!  Geez!  Cut it out!”

Still laughing, Haruko tossed the gun onto the top bunk of the bed and grabbed Naota by his shirt collar.  She shoved him over toward the bed, where he sat down and glared at her.

“It’s dangerous to go waving that thing around,” Naota said.

Haruko smiled and leaned in toward Naota.  He laid down to avoid getting too close to her.  She weaseled her way into his personal space until she was hovering above him on her hands and knees, still covered by nothing but a towel.  She put her forehead against his and said, “Use your guitar again.  One more time, Ta-kun.  Ka-king?  You did it so great last time.”

He looked away from her defiantly, focusing on the wall paper, trying to forget the burning heat rising in his cheeks.  “Not interested.”

Haruko giggled.  “I should teach you how to be a man, Ta-kun.”

Naota turned toward her in a fit, his boyish features twisted in a rage unbecoming of his youth.  “Yeah, like you’d know!”

And then, he felt it.  That feeling again, the swelling, hot, unnatural feeling he always felt when something was going to pop out of his head.  He felt the new protrusion push his head upward suddenly, and Haruko had to jump back to avoid being headbutted.  And then it grew again, and again, jolting his whole upper body up toward Haruko until the back of her head hit the bottom of the upper bunk, and Naota’s lips were pressed firmly against hers.

They hadn’t noticed the door open.  But Haruko noticed Kamon in the door way out of the corner of her eye.  “Yeah, Ta-kun!” she purred, hamming it up for the sake of Kamon, who was turning several shades of anger, envy, jealousy, and rage.  “That’s more like it!”

“No!” Naota protested.  “The horn!  It was the horn!”

“Ooh,” Haruko continued, “my first kiss!”

“Liar,” Naota spat.  “You’ve done it plenty of times and you know it.”

Kamon finally cried out from the door way.  “Naota-kun!” he said.  “I can’t forgive you.  You were making out and doing perverted things behind your own father’s back!”

“That’s not true!” Naota protested.  “You don’t know what you’re–”  But Kamon produced his own BB gun from his waist band and popped Naota in the forehead with a single BB with surprising accuracy.

“Right! We will have a duel of honor.  We must have a battle for Haruko-san!”

Haruko piped in, raising her hand.  “I’m in for it!”

~*~

Right, so.  Here’s the beginning of Brittle Bullet, an episode of FLCL which, by the way, is just as crazy and insane as it sounds.  I had a blast writing this, and I’m looking forward to writing more of the same in the future.  What I really like about writing an already existing cartoon is the fact that I already have dialog, and a solid depiction of what I’m going to be writing.  From there, it’s a matter of filling in the blanks the dialogue leaves behind.  FLCL is crazy in the kind of way that can only be accurately conveyed through a visual medium, so I cut out a part here and there to make things a little more fluid.  But I think this reads almost as well as the cartoon watches, which is what I was aiming for.  I’m looking forward to writing more of the same!  Maybe a scene from Cowboy Bebop??  I want to write a certain scene from Howl’s Moving Castle using only the script, too.  I’m really loving this.  I don’t care whether it’s half-assed or not, it’s a good work out.  Kind of like immitating the masters in Art class.  Mimicry is the hightest form of flattery, or something like that. 

And, I will be finishing Brittle Bullet.  Soon.  For sure.  Because it’s awesome.


So I had, like, no ideas. And then all of the sudden I had one.

My inner dialogue has gone something like this:

Okay, let’s write something.
What should I write?
A western would be good.  I’ll do that.
Note to self: cannot write exclusively on one project.
How about fantasy?
I’ve never read a fantasy book.
How about young adult?
Or a flash fiction challenge?
OR ANYTHING?
Why is it so damn hard to come up with stuff lately?
Maybe I should write first thing in the morning.
…What is morning, anyway?
I’m obviously in a rut.
Write or die.
Write anyway.
JUST DO IT.
Now, what to do…

Yeah.  You get the picture.  I’d call it writer’s block but I know it’s because I’m going through some huge transitions in life at this point, some expected and some completely-out-of-nowhere-holy-shit-what-do-I-do-now?! unexpected.  I sit down to write and it’s like there’s this little black hole of worry sitting somewhere above my left ear sucking all of the creativity I possess into dimensions unknown.

So I had this idea, right?  I figure, I feel like my writing is just too weak.  No matter how I try to flex my writing muscle, it never seems to gain any strength.  I sit down to write and even if I felt a burst of energy not so long ago, most of the time I sit staring at the computer screen feeling completely impotent.

My idea is this: take shit that’s already been created and is awesome and rewrite it.  Give proper credit, of course.  I’m not out to plagiarize or anything.  That’s lame.  But I gotta write something. Anything.  Even if it’s not original.

Wish me luck.


Writer’s Block: Write or Die

It doesn’t exist.  I have to tell myself, over and over again, writer’s block does not exist.

You can’t touch it, or feel it, or wrap your fingers around it.

It’s not some kind of chemical imbalance that can be measured, monitored, and medicated.

There is no word troll sitting in my right brain eating all the words.

To sum up: there is no goddam excuse for my nearly non-existent word count lately.  None.  I sit here and beat myself up because my dialogue is weak and my prose is too sparse and I can’t seem to give anything I write momentum.

But rule numero uno in writing is, was, and always will be this: WRITE OR DIE.  If you don’t write, you won’t write.  Period.  End of story.  End of all stories, actually.  Tragic, really, if you think about it.  I beat myself up over my inadequacies but every time I post something my hit count climbs higher and higher.  People wouldn’t read what I’m writing if they thought it was garbage.

And I have all these sweet ideas, too.  Mostly they amount to chopping up books and movies I love and putting their pieces back together like Frankenstein’s monster, but whatever.  There’s no such thing as originality, after all.

And then, of course, there’s Salvation.  I’m in love with my characters.  I love Cherry because I’m narcissistic.  I love Casey because I’m going to be mean as hell to him but he’s gonna obey, anyway.  I love Rupert because he’s going to grow up to be one twisted mammajama.  And I love the man in black because he’s just so damn sexy in that powerful, evil, despotic kind of way.

But I keep getting hung up because I want it to be perfect the first time.  Even though I know it’s impossible, even though it was a project intended to be more word vomit than anything, some stubborn part of my subconscious gets all gun-shy and nervous about clicking the Publish button.

So consider my little hiatus over.  Done.  Finis.  I’m going to pony up and do what needs to be done, which is to write.  No more whining, no more second-guessing, no more pissing and moaning over a case of writer’s block which fundamentally can’t and never will hinder me.

I am a writer, after all.  So I gotta finish the shit that I start.


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