It’s almost midnight and I’m still working.
But I’m drawing pictures of toilet paper, so at least I can say I LOVE WHAT I DO.
No, seriously. If you have to be working late, drawing pictures of toilet paper is better than the database nightmare I was wrestling with last week. Of course, this is just a draft (pending the artist’s/my boss’ approval.) I’m moving onto some website stuff, with IT CROWD playing in the background, so I can take a wonderful, carefree day off tomorrow and get some writing done.
It got approved and lots of compliments. I think drawing toilet paper may be my new calling in life…
I have struggled with dyslexia all of my life. Although I’m amazingly clever at anagrams, this issue, as you can imagine, has been problematic. I was lucky to grow up with parents who read a lot and helped me learn to love to read and write despite how difficult it was for me. I know a lot of kids aren’t that fortunate. They have difficulty with reading and writing early on in school and are instantly evaluated as “less intelligent”. I was lucky and, because my parents provided me with a reading obsessed environment, I taught myself workarounds.
Some days still, however, when I’m tired and stressed, it’s hard to get through a sentence. It’s like a bomb exploding within the word. “Second” become “econsd”. “Typically” becomes “pytcially”. I’ll spend ten minutes on two paragraphs, typing and retyping, then deleting, then growling at the keyboard, at my stupid fingers, at myself, and then I calm down, and type again. Slwoly. Slowyl. Slowly.
Until it’s right.
And I’m a writer. I’m a marketing & social media coordinator at a center for writers. What, other than obsessive masochism, would drive me to choose this path? What would drive me to blog about it when I’m having to retype every other word two to three times?
I don’t know.
For years, this has been THE question. And I still don’t have an answer. Even if I had one, it would probably come out twisted and inside out. All I know is that I love to write, despite the inherent difficulties. I hate feeling dumb and usually don’t, but every now and then, I miss something. Some days still, I don’t just type inside out, I read that way too. And when I write “ahte”, I read “hate” and feel the text is ready to share.
I’m sending off a piece I’ve written to Peter Mountford, Hugo House’s Writer In Residence, today. It’s the first literary non-fiction I’ve ever written and I feel very good about it, but a multitude of fears trail behind the piece… fears about writing memoir, fears about my own writing, fears about whether I’m capable enough to review my own work before sending it out. I suppose I’m writing about this, on a day when my dyslexia is particularly bad, because my fears about my writing are just like my fears about my abilities. They’re something I can work around.
I just have to keep typing.
Yesterday, I finished my design project for Meghan O’Keefe, a writer and comedienne in NYC. Her sketch comedy group is putting on a show “Dorothy Parker & The Salon of Spirits” on April 15th (go see it if you’re in NYC!).
This was an incredible project to work on. I loved drawing Dorothy. Not only is she one of my favorite poets/writers, she is also a ton of fun to draw because she looks exactly like her works: droll, sharp, witty and arch.
The skeletons were a lot of fun to draw, too. Honestly, I kept thinking of Disney’s 1929 Silly Symphony “The Skeleton Dance” while drawing them.
Although, the problem with my brain is that I had skeletons on the brain for a couple nights and my subconcious was like, “Hmm. Skeletons, eh? Let’s see what kind of narratives can we come up with to accompany these images…”
So I had about three nights of weird CBS-style dreams of trying to figure out where the skeletons had come from.
So now that the project is done, I’m back down to two jobs. As nice as it is not juggling three jobs, I’m a bit sad there isn’t another design project immediately lined up after this. I’m never happier than I am when I’m drawing.
Anyone want to order a custom project from me? ;)
So I did some art for an event that Hugo House is holding in August for a zine called Rad Dad. It’s been published as an anthology and we’re hosting the release party.
So for the Dad, I was inspired by Vasant (my husband, for you new followers). This was pretty emotional for me to draw, and honestly for me to share. The image we’re hosting at Hugo House is this:
It’s not just Vasant, but what I think our child will one day look like. For the image of just him, I took away the visible tattoos, although it is VERY IMPORTANT that you know that Vasant has tattoos. Tattoos are cool. They’re just not on his arms or neck. I took away the belt and the shirt, and of course, he’s wearing Smauglock, everyone’s favorite dragon of deduction.
Some of you may not know, but I went through a rough and lengthy miscarriage earlier this year. Just drawing this has thrown me for a loop. But it was good to draw. It feels like I brought one more bit of my heart back.
Oh, and also, here’s what Vasant looks like, just so you know. I’m pretty darn proud of how good it turned out.
Also: my husband is amazingly attractive. Also also: that’s him filming! In Rome!
So yes. That was last week’s art.
This week’s art project is Doctor Who related! It’s about Wilfred and his telescope!
Anyway. I love you Tumblroos. Thanks for giving me the courage to share this stuff.