Tuesday, February 03, 2009

Shit or Get Off the Pot

Miss Missives got the unpleasant task of reviewing the Seventh Notebook. Do you know why it's called the Seventh Notebook? Because there was a Sixth Notebook and probably a Fifth Notebook before that and I'm guessing they are all sitting somewhere half-finished.

I don't want to be unnecessarily cruel here because Catherine is a person who has some very big dreams for herself and is not succeeding. Most of us can relate to that on some level. She is also a bit lonely, fragile and has apparently internalized discouragement. Catherine has big plans to move to New York; to realize her writing and acting aspirations in this city that calls to her. It is in fact the major theme in her blog.

I'm going to be straight with you Catherine, this blog reads like one giant uncompleted to do list. If procrastination had a spokesperson, it might just be you. Catherine is always about to do something, always gearing up, getting ready, making plans.

People like this are infinitely frustrating to me because you want them to win, you really do. I hope that Catherine writes her book and moves to New York and has the big Brownstone that she wants and all that she dreams of but if I had to bet, I'd have to bet against her. Listen, everyone procrastinates now and then. Creative people are some of the worst because sometimes you feel connected to it, that thing or place where you can create with some level of ease and other times you just can't make ideas come together in a way you're happy with.

In one post she says she is stopping smoking, even her parlance is non-committal. Catherine, you cannot be stopping smoking, you are either smoking or not smoking. That's like saying, I'm stopping fucking. You are either fucking or you are not fucking. You might be about to fuck or done with fucking but you are not stopping fucking. The same comparison works with killing, try it. It would seem that what she likes to do best is talk about doing things.

There is a lot of blogging about blogging. The blog is filled with loads of apologizing for not blogging and still more apologizing for not reading other's blogs. There are boring posts filled with mundane details that read like a New Year's resolution. The template is meh but clean and uncluttered. The only post I enjoyed was this and that's basically because it is one long list of desserts.

Catherine there is only one piece of advice I can offer you in regard to your blog. Shut the whole thing down. Blogging for you is one more way to fill the time you should be using to realize your dreams. Oh, and buy something like the Seven Habits of Highly Effective People or something and don't tell me you'll start tomorrow.

Until then, you get a






and a










69 comments:

  1. I'll stop procrastinating tomorrow.

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  2. I thought this review was written about me for a second there, and that was a little scary. And then I thought, "sweet, another underacheiver, I'll totally be able to relate to this blogger because neither of us ever do the shit we want to do".

    But...I read the About page and was bored to tears by the end of paragraph two. Who in the hell cares about all the previous blogs and what their texts looked like and why you left them? Girlfriend, this is the page that's gonna sell you to potential readers! Make that shit interesting! And this is coming from someone that identifies with you, for fucks sake.

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  3. Either get on with livin' or get on with dyin'.

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  4. Word, Bluestreak. I thought the same thing about being similar to this blogger...I'm a big procrastinator with big dreams who could use a hard kick in the ass on any given day to get off the metaphorical (and often literal) couch and actually do something.

    The About page? I couldn't even read through it. It was long and drawn out. Why would I care to read about a blog that is no longer in existence? I'm not saying my blog is all that interesting either. So I should probably stop now. I will say this: I think she is a good writer in that she does the right things in terms of grammar, spelling, punctuation, etc. At least from what I've read so far. I just found the context tantamount to taking a Xanax. Shit maybe I did take a Xanax and I'm judging this girl too harshly. I guess I'll go back and read when this thing wears off.

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  5. I'm bored - and want dessert.

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  6. I'm sad now.

    And want a drink.

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  7. I'm working at home with a sick child, a 60 page manual I need to revise/edit, and a hyperactive dog. 3 hours in my life would kick this chick's ass for good.

    On the other hand, the one good thing about working from home is that you can drink, while working.

    Not that I would...I'm not RASSLES.

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  8. I think she's a good writer, regarding spelling and punctuation and grammar and the 'flow.'

    But she tends to ramble. A famous author whose name I can't remember said something like "When you write, edit out the parts that people don't read," and that's what she needs to do. I ended up skimming a LOT.

    I wish her luck, though.

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  9. This woman is obviously all about the details. Every last miniscule inconsequential boring one.

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  10. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  11. This blog would be good if she read her posts before hitting publish and asked herself about each paragraph: "is there any information here that 99.9% of people don´t give two shits about?" and then deleting that garbage.

    It´s called "editing".

    I´m sure this blogger has some good stuff buried amongts the agonizingly mundane details. But I´m too busy to look for it. And I´m fucking unemployed with nothing to do.

    (see, I took my own advice)

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  12. People think editing is easy. I'm telling you editors should be paid more. We are unsung heroes.

    Ok, so I exaggerate. But still. Editinglyness is next to godliness.

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  13. The problem is that some people think that editing is just spell checking. You have to edit the content too and remember that your audience is finickier than the voices in your head.

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  14. There was one section in there where she actually said she was a ruthleszs editor, uhm, no.

    I actually didn't care for the writing but you know, I don't want to be a dream killer.

    I'm not Simon(LB) and I'm not Paula(Cal) either, maybe I'm Randy, so Dog, it just didn't work for me Dog, but good luck okay?

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  15. I'm feeling a little disparaged now. Paula indeed. I do not dope up before reviewing, I'll have you know. Well, not always.

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  16. Miss M, that was the most accurate depiction of the AI cast I have ever seen. Nicely done.

    And this blog made me want to lick my cat's asshole just so I could say I did something today.

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  17. Work drinking is the best, and don't you forget it.

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  18. Rassles, your personal stationery should be your name at the top of crisp white heavy linen paper with deep red Chianti splatter all over it.

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  19. Damn! Key was right. DPH is into asses.

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  20. Ass SEX, Blue. ASS SEX. Not into asses.

    Nevermind. Fine, I'm into ass.

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  21. That´s disgusting, DPH. Leave the cat alone.

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  22. Gross, DPH. I don't even like to be in the same room with litter boxes and you are contemplating licking your cat's ass.

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  23. poor kitty cat, indeed. As far as the writing, yeah I went back after my Xanax wore off and guess what? I'm still bored. I think everyone is right: Editing, editing, and more editing. I could benefit from some editing, too, but I'm not the one being reviewed today. Oh, and I have plenty of Xanax to share with the whole class. And ativan. Whichever you prefer.

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  24. Personally, I don't think editing would help this blog. I didn't find anything interesting in the few posts I read. Editing would leave a blank blog. On 2nd thought, maybe that is just what this blog needs.

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  25. Editing hell. This woman needs to get off the damn computer and get herself a fucking life.

    Then, maybe she'd have some ass sex to write about.

    Also...the Simon comparison? I'm still trying to decide if I like it or not. I do think that Simon is almost ALWAYS right.

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  26. LB- the Simon comparision because your honest and you rarely couch it to sooth the blow and yet,like Simon, you know when to pull back lest you really wound someone.

    Like Randy, I'm a bit more delicate when I think someone's going to fall apart over it and a bit more brutal when I don't like them or I think they can take it. I think you're actually far more impartial.

    Plus I can think of two people who would certainly give good spankin', Simon and LB.

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  27. Deleting counts as editing, right?

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  28. Well, you know the key to a good spanking is to cup your palm SLIGHTLY and to always hit right in the sweet spot. That way, you get a nice popping sound and some slight amount of pain, but not too much.

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  29. p.s. Do we ever really want to make ANYONE delete their blog? I don't. I just want them to stop sucking.

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  30. Goodness no.

    Would have nothing to mock from the safety of thousands of miles away if they did.

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  31. that video is hilarious, I've been watching it instead of working

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  32. Anon, you're super-meta.

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  33. Ky-
    Trade 5 xanax for 1 valium. I'll add 1 ambien for 2 ritalin and throw in half a box of krispy kreme for 2 valium.

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  34. I'll trade a half of a container of coconut pecan icing for a batch of cupcakes.

    Who needs drugs when there is sugar/fat?

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  35. Because, LB, sugar and fat combined with ambien is way better than plain old sugar and fat.

    That cake thing looks fun. Nice snack with sprinkled powder(ey) ambien.

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  36. This blog reminds me of Cake Farts. I vomit a little everytime I think about it.

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  37. Mmmm...a chocolate cake in a mug sprinkled with crushed Valium sounds divine. I have some Valium too Gap : ) I love that shit so I don't share it as readily as I do the other stuff : ) Why do I have a pharmacy in my medicine cabinet? Because I'm crazy. And I found a good way of convincing doctors to give me the good drugs...I have surgeries. Lots and lots of surgeries. It always does the trick.

    Back to the blog: I would think that any writer serious about writing would use constructive criticism to improve his or her writing. Sure, it sucks to be told you're boring, you need to edit, etc. but if she's a serious writer, as she claims to be, then she should take her medicine and use it as an opportunity to get better at her craft.

    I know that it easy for me to say right now because I'm not the one being torn a new one. Honestly though, I am looking forward to my review and getting some criticism and feedback on my writing from people who know what the hell they are talking about. I've never had anyone review my writing other than Comp teachers in community college. If I can't take the criticism, and if someone telling me I'm a bore and need to edit STOPS me from wanting to write then I just don't know how serious a writer I was in the first place. This blogger has gotten some positive feedback along with the negative (although the negative is more fun for us and therefore more of the focus!)

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  38. I want some ritalin so i can get my fucking house clean and lose 10 pounds, how do i get a dr. to give me that? act like I can't focus on what he's asking me???

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  39. Just do it.

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  40. Great, insightful review - very much appreciated. My reply's up at Seventh Notebook.

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  41. Reviewing a reviewers review; Ok!

    If I were on acid this would really trip me out.

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  42. Read the whole reply.

    Wow. Totally typless now.

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  43. I've now whacked down the About page! Could still be a snoozefest, but at least it's shorter.

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  44. XANAX, .25 per pill, get yer XANAX here!

    XANAX, .25 per pill, get yer XANAX here!

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  45. Maybe I took too many Xanax, but I have no idea what this part of her response to the review even means:

    She came, she read your blog, she got impressions. But no, I’ve concluded after some long thought here, that your sense of that is a result of your pity and high annoyance from boredom mixed with a good concentrated dab of my sensitivity (unless you are in early middle school, sensitivity and fragility should not be mistaken for one another) and my long-guttering sense of humor. I think it may also lay in a lack of determination to be strictly just. Overall, you got it, but you slip around in the details.

    Can someone explain this to me? What does "long-guttering" mean?

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  46. When the flame of a candle is low and dim cuz the wick is soaking the wax, it's guttering - see [2] - intransitive verb.

    The paragraph you refer to means that after wondering how I could be responsible for Miss Missives' impression of me as fragile, I gave up and attributed responsibility mainly to her.

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  47. Thanks for the definition there Catherine. Interesting word. I'm always on the prowl for interesting words to add to my vocabulary.

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  48. Jesus, I've got ten dollars, gap, get me pills. I need them, I read that reply.

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  49. I'm still caught on this "guttering" thing. How is your sense of humor "long guttering"? I'm just confused. Because I am trying to understand your sense of humor. Because it is fascinating to me. Is your sense of humor "low and dim"? How so? Also, you are attributing Miss Missives' opinion of you as fragile as her responsibility? It seems to me that she takes responsibility for her own opinions already. She said it was her impression from your writing and description of yourself that you are a fragile individual. Maybe you don't perceive yourself that way, but that is how you are being perceived from your writing. Anyway, I think you are just too profound and deep for me to fully understand.

    Good luck with your writing.

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  50. The reply was PATHETIC.

    Gets some self esteem already.

    Gawwwwwwd!

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  51. Having read the review of our review, I have to quibble. Catherine writes:

    I am a good writer technically, but there is more to being a good writer than that. I lack zing and color in my blog as I do in my life, but I qualify as a good writer by many of those other measures.

    You aren't a good writer. Your response made me want to shoot myself in the head by the mid third paragraph.

    Fucking learn to edit yourself, you wordy bitch. You aren't slow and steady, you're pedantic, cumbersome, and boring as hell. That isn't good.

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  52. Consider this sentence, for instance:

    I am still shaking off a dense cloud of angsty, anxiety-tinged depression that collected at breakneck speed around my head at the end of Inauguration Day.


    WHAT THE HELL? You couldn't have said that in 6 words or less?

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  53. Yes! LB - I LOVE words but this blog is just verbose to a nauseating degree.

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  54. Oh, how I love a review of a review. They always end up illustrating the initial review perfectly.

    "I think I should really start writing about other shit."

    Yes, and while you do that, EDIT!

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  55. Yeah, like I said, Cake Farts. Her reply seriously made me want to kill the person that sold her that thesaurus.

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  56. Let me just clarify...I'm not saying that this woman can't BECOME a good writer. But, that process will require discipline, the willingness to self-edit, and choosing topics that doing make the reader wish to self-mutilate.

    Her review of our review doesn't indicate a willingness to do ANY of these things.

    Catherine, you could start by writing a post, and then going through and deleting about 60% of the words. THAT would be a huge help.

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  57. I wrote this particular review more about Catherine's procrastination than her writing because her writing(at least her blog writing) needs so much help that I couldn't paint any broad strokes besides edit. I figure more time devoted to working on writing would move her forward. Someone posted on her site that I went back only a few months and didn't read/skim years back at all the pieces she's written and that is absolutely true. I tried, really I did. Her writing for me, felt very much like the scattered inner dialogue that most of us have running through our head at any given moment, there's a reason why we don't vocalize it or capture it like a stenographer.

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  58. Love Bites - I'm pretty friendly, actually.

    To all: I appreciate your stopping by and having a look at the blog. I wish your experience there had been a good one.

    I am taking this experience for all it's worth. Advice has been taken in and is being studied. I've gotten some excellent reminders. I'm learning a ton right now, and that's a great thing. I asked for this, I received, and I am grateful for it.

    Thanks again to Miss Missives and AAYSR.

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  59. I think Cath is one of those people that needs to have the last word.

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  60. There's no way that cam from Cath because it was only like three words.

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  61. It definitely didn't come from catherine. It would have taken a lot more letters for her to say that.

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  62. I'm starting to loathe this Catherine person now.

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  63. So I'm avoiding doing work, and reading everything, and here's what I noticed:

    This review wasn't mean at all. In fact, based on previous reviews, it was gracious and forgiving. You flat out stated you wanted her to succeed and that you liked her, but it seems like she chose to focus on everything but your encouragement.

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  64. Rassels - Guilty, mostly. I did see the positives, but I didn't focus on them. As this whole thing gels, those and all the other goods that have come of the experience are showing up a lot better.

    Miss Missives - please consider your encouragement and other positives appreciated, they are. I mentioned your sense of justice faltering. Maybe, but it was very much there and in place throughout your dealing with my blog. Thanks again.

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  65. See, I was right about the last word thing.

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Grow a pair.