Month: November 2012 (Page 1 of 2)

A few disjointed items

  • It’s very difficult to read the things I have written without getting the itch to edit. (Tweak. Undo. Tweak. Undo.)
  • I recently worked some Facebook magic and acquired an easy-to-remember URL for my Page: http://facebook.com/kristanhoffman.
  • Andy got me an iPad Mini for my birthday. I love it.
  • Related: I’ve started using Instagram.
  • I’ve also started using Omm Writer on occasion. I’m not sure yet how it fits into my writing process/workflow, but I enjoy the stark simplicity and zen-ness of it.
  • I do not look forward to holiday shopping. I keep a running list of ideas year-round, but still, I am not very good at figuring out what to give people.
  • THIS. Read this.
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Bernabeu

10-20 Real Madrid at Bernabeu 005 10-20 Real Madrid at Bernabeu 013

Blue seats. Blue sky. A few blue jerseys, but mostly the crowd is here for the home team. Royal Madrid.

We file in, climb up, take our seats. Around us, a few people dig into bags of sunflower seeds or peanuts. Light up their cigarettes. Smoke drifts up in tiny clouds, like swarms of gnats rising from a field.

As the game gets going, the stadium vibrates. The energy is electric. Bodies moving in harmony. Voices crying out in discord, going hoarse. On my right, a man mutters muy bien every time Real does something good, and joder every time they don’t.

The biggest difference between Bernabeu and an American stadium is the focus. There are no food vendors, no beer stands, no team stores. No distractions. You are here for one thing and one thing only: to cheer your team, devotedly.

All of a sudden: GOOOOOL! Everyone erupts, happy or not.

We push up to the edge of our seats with excitement. We slump back in dejection. We heave a breath of relief. We shake our heads in frustration. Back and forth, back and forth — our emotions, the players, the ball crossing the field. This is the rhythm of sport. The rhythm of a city united for a moment in time.

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Excerpt from a letter to my friend Angie

Turning 27 in less than a week. Wow. In a lot of ways it feels like a nothing birthday — I’m not planning anything, not earning/hitting any milestones — but at the same time, it’s another year gone by. Another step away from youth. And a step toward… what? Maybe that’s the thing. Maybe that’s why people don’t like getting older (at least in part). We don’t know what we’re walking toward.

Where in the nebulous future do my hopes and dreams lie? Am I near or far? Only way to know is to keep going.

My comfort is that, for the most part, I’m happy. Content, but not complacent. I enjoy my life, my daily routine, my home — but I’m still striving for more. Trying to find/create professional success. To contribute more to my family and household. To improve my mind, my behavior, my actions.

Maybe it’s too late to be the Taylor Swift of writing. But it’s never too late to be great.

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A birthday poem

andy bday card to me 003

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We all we got

After graduating college and moving in with Andy, one of the first things I did was buy a desk. I needed a desk, I thought. How else could I write if I didn’t have a dedicated space for it?

Next I bought a chair. Of course. What good is a desk without a chair?

Then I got a new computer. (A gift.) A beautiful, shiny MacBook. A dream machine. What else could I possibly need?

An external keyboard. A new desk. Another new desk. And another. I rearranged the furniture. I got dictation software. I tried a different word processing program. And another. And another.

I went to the library to work. I went to a coffee shop. I stayed home and turned off my internet. I turned it back on. I worked with music, and without. I stayed up late. I got up early.

I’ve tried everything, and really, the changes are minute. Good days and bad days still come in about the same ratio. The words have their pace, their rhythm. They don’t answer to me or my environment.

Sometimes I find myself thinking, “Well, someday.” Someday I’ll have a real office. Someday I’ll be able to afford to work at a coffee shop every day. Someday I’ll have an agent, an editor, deadlines. (Fans, awards, a movie deal.) Someday I’ll buy a better chair.

And maybe someday I will. Maybe someday I will have all of those things and more. But even now, in the midst of the daydreaming and wishing, I know.

I know that those things won’t — can’t — do what I need to do.

I know that it’s nice to have good tools in your arsenal, but they’re not going to do the work for you.

And I know I’m not the only one who falls into this trap. We all get caught up in thinking — imagining, believing — that things will be different — better, easier — in the future. But the truth is, no matter how much money we have, or how famous we get, or how good our chair is, or how delicious the muffins are at the coffee shop where we work instead of at a folding table in our bedroom… No matter what’s around us, it’s what inside us that counts.

Aspiring, midlist, unknown, bestseller. At the end of the day, we’re all in the same place. We’re all faced with the page. The story. The words.

Nothing changes that. Ever.

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