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Sunny and 73˚F.

I know that once upon a time this journal had multiple reason for existing: as a means to promote my writing (first and foremost), as a place to vent about shit that pisses me off, as a way to stay in touch with fans, etc. However, these days, it serves no real purpose whatsoever. Over the past several years, the readership has fallen off to a tiny fraction of what it once had. Yeah, I know you read it. And you. But it has long since ceased to be a viable means of promotion, and I've ceased to use it to do much more than post a few lines about each day's work (and truly, no one gives a shit). I do not talk about the things that matter. Of course, I never should have, not in public. I should never have bought into the Big Lie of Blogging, which then became the Much Bigger Lie of Social Media. But I did.

I can try to say what's really on my mind, like this quote from David Foster Wallace that I posted yesterday to Facebook:

The so-called ‘psychotically depressed’ person who tries to kill herself doesn’t do so out of quote ‘hopelessness’ or any abstract conviction that life’s assets and debits do not square. And surely not because death seems suddenly appealing. The person in whom Its invisible agony reaches a certain unendurable level will kill herself the same way a trapped person will eventually jump from the window of a burning high-rise. Make no mistake about people who leap from burning windows. Their terror of falling from a great height is still just as great as it would be for you or me standing speculatively at the same window just checking out the view; i.e. the fear of falling remains a constant. The variable here is the other terror, the fire’s flames: when the flames get close enough, falling to death becomes the slightly less terrible of two terrors. It’s not desiring the fall; it’s terror of the flames. And yet nobody down on the sidewalk, looking up and yelling ‘Don’t!’ and ‘Hang on!’, can understand the jump. Not really. You’d have to have personally been trapped and felt flames to really understand a terror way beyond falling.

Or I can say fuck it all. That would be the smart thing to do, but, these days, in this world, smart is not in vogue. Smart is inadvisable. Smart gets you looked at funny. Smart gets you denounced.

Meanwhile, Sirenia Digest No. 140 has gone out to subscribers. And today I have to begin the scramble to produce a viable ms. for the Centipede Press edition of Silk. In September, I wrote 24,454 words of publishable fiction – a novella and a short story.

I want to be home.

Aunt Beast

2:14 a.m.


( 4 comments — Have your say! )
Marc D. Goldfinger
Sep. 27th, 2017 03:02 pm (UTC)
David Foster Wallace and
Fantastic quote from Mr. Wallace. And those who have not felt the flames have no understanding of dying by suicide, or considering it.

Thank you Caitlin. On certain days you say exactly what I need to contemplate. You are a wonder!
Sep. 27th, 2017 03:29 pm (UTC)
That quote from David Foster Wallace perfectly describes suicidal feelings and psychosis. I've been to that ledge, with the flames licking around me, and the fall looked much better than the alternative. People who haven't been to that place have no idea. They just look at you funny. Or worse yet, they assume that your impulse to self-destruction has to do with them - that you don't like them, or they don't matter enough to you when nothing could be further from the truth.

I'm sorry if you've been there, too. It's a terrible place to be. And not many understand it.

On a completely unrelated note: OMG, we have the exact same fan! It's on temporary loan from our housing program.

Don't stop writing. I enjoy your writing, no matter what you have to say, because it gets me thinking, and I feel less alone. I realize that may not be enough to continue, and it doesn't meet your stated goals, which is to get your work more well-known. But on the other hand, if I hadn't been introduced to your LJ by Casondra Brewster years ago, I never would've discovered your writing, and indeed many other authors of sci-fi/fantasy/speculative fiction. So you've opened up a world to me that I may not have discovered otherwise.

I think platforms like LJ and DW serve a different purpose than Facebook and other social media platforms (like Twitter). I find on LJ/DW I have a network of support that I lack in my day-to-day life. I've had these friends for years, many since I joined LJ in 2005, and most of us have mental health diagnoses, and we provide help (sometimes financial or other) when we can. I'm more fortunate than others, in that I have a support network in real life, but with the friends I have here, I can talk about things in a way I don't with real-life friends.

And yes, I consider you part of the support network because it seems we share a similar condition. Even though I've never met you in real life, and I don't talk to you on the intimate level that I do with some others when I read your LJ I feel less alone because you get what it's like to deal with these issues on the daily, unlike most other people.

I don't know if that's enough to keep you writing, but I'm sure there are others on your friends list who feel the same way. But more importantly, you should do this because YOU want to do it, and no other reason.
Sep. 27th, 2017 05:22 pm (UTC)
At first I thought it was the temporary overnights chewing me raw inside, then I came to realize it's the select soul-sucking people in the world at large, let alone the periphery of what's supposed to be simply earning a paycheck.

I am at odds reconciling any of this inside.

(And any commonalities between certain places in the Big Lie of Blogging today are complete synchronicities.)
Sep. 27th, 2017 06:24 pm (UTC)
I know you rent where you live but did you choose the paint colors or was it already that way? That red looks like what I painted my living room except I have black trim and accents instead of white. We painted the bedrooms dark blue and black. This was 15 years ago. My house has felt like a giant living painful bruise but I also hate change. Finally my current girlfriend convinced me to repaint the bedroom. It gave me much anxiety but I did it and the colors are much lighter and like a breath of fresh air. The rest of the house is still crazy though.
( 4 comments — Have your say! )