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Oh, Chloe.

I had a oddly fascinating dream last night that REALLY played like a movie. Unfortunately I’ve waited probably an hour too long to really keep hold on the details but I think it’ll be fine considering as soon as I woke up I knew I would post it here and thus put effort into remembering. So let’s get down to business.

I was at the mall. Possibly buying christmas gifts or something of that nature. There was a really rude sales clerk that wouldn’t let me do something that I should have been able to do. So I got really angry. And the only unsympathetically strange part is that I picked him up and smacked him hard against the wall half a dozen times. I must have been channeling Lisbeth Salander’s intensely unnecessary violence towards those who commit relatively minor wrongs against her. So I was whipping this sales guy against the wall as hard as I could (as if this were an appropriate and acceptable response) and then I threw him across the way, but I guess I underestimated my own strength and threw him over the railing of the stairs.

Now, I’m not totally evil and psycho in this dream, I was worried I had hurt him badly by accidentally throwing over the stairs, so I ran over to look and turns out I REAALLY overshot the stairs and he was all the way at the bottom, a floor or two down. And he was dead.

Actually, he his body was positioned against the door in a fetal position, very much like I visualized Lisbeth when she was (SPOILER ALERT!) thrown into the open grave in the end of The Girl Who Played with Fire. 

Except this unfortunate fellow was most surely dead and naturally I was devastated. The cops showed up, I couldn’t believe what I’d accidentally done, and I sat down on the stairs, making no attempt to run or resist arrest. Consciously I wondered if I would get upset and for a second I thought I wouldn’t but then all of a sudden the emotion of the situation hit me and I started to break down and sob.

CUT TO my inevitable incarceration, though now I was watching the story like the movie camera, a non-existent, neutral third party. My former character was now played by Justin Long and his visiting friend was played by Mary Lynn Rajskub a.k.a. Chloe O’Brien from 24. There was romantic tension going on. And I couldn’t decide whether there was something going on before the man slaughter, but it seems a little daft for her to have fallen in love with Justin Long while he was in prison, no matter how sympathetic a character he can be made at this point.

Then something weird developed. My brain took a note from Dexter and Chloe died for whatever reason but Justin Long still hallucinated that she visited regularly. She helped him through his demons to the end of the story, and only then was it revealed to him that she had died.

But then my brain went all wonky and Justin Long died but Chloe didn’t know it, then both Chloe and Justin were dead but still hallucinating each other and of course it made no sense, thus why I picked the first scenario as the most appropriate and believable.

SECOND DREAM: I had a brief second dream that wasn’t very interesting, but I thought, like literally 30 seconds ago, something about it that might deserve some proper dream analyses. In the recent past I’ve had dreams where I’m in high school and we’re do weird schedules where you don’t have the same classes everyday. They rotate through. But in these dreams I’m never really sure which day of the week it is, and frankly, I don’t really even know my schedule aside from either others telling me or physical memory of walking to a class. It’s very anxietous (I guess that’s not a word, oh well, I just made it one). So that’s the first anxiety thread in that dream, but in this particular dream I thought it was Friday, but it was Monday, which actually turned out to be fortuitous because Monday was the day I didn’t have the class I dreaded the most and the idea that I was going to have to go to that dreaded class caused me significant anxiety for a second time.

So what’s the deal with that anxiety? What is that anxiety, manifested in my dream as a class or teacher, representing in real life? I just don’t know since I didn’t take the time to remember the details. I saved that energy for remembering the Chloe and Justin dream.

P.S. on Parenthood last night Amber expressed perfectly exactly my feelings of fear and anxiety over getting a legitimate hard core job. She was conveniently for television purposes brave enough to admit her anxiety. Maybe that’s what my dream anxiety is related to. Eh, who knows.

But, Oh, Chloe, I wish you weren’t dead. And for all intents and purposes you are because 24 is no longer on the air.

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Without Complaint or Conceit

Previously on… The Civil War Story: Peter and his father’s personal issues with one another boil over and he is determined to strike out on his own.

Peter approaches the town blacksmith, we’ll call him Mr. Martin. He and Mr. Martin have a pseudo father-son relationship, as much as two people can have with limited interaction outside of business transactions. But Peter respects Mr. Martin, and Mr. Martin has always taken a liking to Peter, regardless of his apparent behavioral issues since his mother died.

So when Peter approaches Mr. Martin at his forge no sooner than the sun has risen he can tell this is not a regular visit. It just so happens that a long time blacksmith friend of Mr. Martin’s, Mr. Windt, is passing through Gettysburg on the way to his next destination. Martin and Windt are chatting animatedly with one another while Peter stands politely out of the way, waiting for a break in the conversation.

As he’s waiting, Peter overhears Mr. Windt talking about how he just got rid of an absolutely horrid apprentice. Lazy, ungrateful, and a spoiled brat as Windt describes him. Mr. Martin notices Peter and indicates he’ll be just a moment. Martin takes Windt into his forge for a moment and they look at some small artistic pieces that Martin has made and they make a quick trade. Mr. Windt heads back to his cart across the way and Mr. Martin invites Peter over.

At first Peter isn’t sure what to say so he keeps things formal. But when Mr. Martin presses him, knowing something is awry, Peter hesitantly asks if he might have the opportunity to learn from Mr. Martin. He says he has decided it’s time him to get out of the house and learn a useful skill.

Mr. Martin is surprised. Considering Robert’s social status he wouldn’t have picked his son to pursue blacksmithing. However, Peter’s curious disposition sparks an idea in Mr. Martin. Mr. Martin calls Mr. Windt back over and introduces the two. When Peter looks into Mr. Windt’s eyes they are hard and critical but not unkind. Peter is intimidated. “If it would be agreeable to you both, I have a proposition. Mr. Windt here is in need of an apprentice.” Mr. Windt huffs slightly, as if he doesn’t really need an apprentice after his last failed attempt.  “Peter here is looking to learn something about blacksmithing. I don’t have the means to employ an apprentice at the moment, but I suspect Mr. Windt isn’t so put out by his last charge that he wouldn’t consider hiring a young man; for whom I can personally vouch as one of quality.”

Peter, Mr. Windt, and Mr. Martin all look at each other in consideration. Mr. Martin raises an eyebrow, and Mr. Windt nearly rolls his eyes, but Mr. Windt takes one more good look at Peter and says, “Well, son, I suppose I could spare the trouble to teach you. But I need assurance that you’re willing to do exactly as I say without complaint or conceit. And I’ll tell you right now, you’ll be sore and tired. All the time. I’ve been sore and tired for 30 years and I don’t complain. Do you think you can humble yourself to such a state?”

Peter musters all the gall he has not to tremble. He can’t kid himself, he is intimidated, he is even a little scared about placing his personal health and safety in this man’s hands who he doesn’t even know. For a fleeting moment he wishes his father were there to advise him, but he quickly forces the thought from his mind.

“Yes sir, I believe I can do those things. Without complaint or conceit,”  he says.

Mr. Windt laughs. “Ha! You’ve got a smooth tongue boy, but I don’t mind a smooth tongue so long as it’s directed at paying customers and not at trying to get out of hard work.” Mr. Windt and Mr. Martin shake hands. Peter indicates he had everything he’ll need with him and Mr. Windt motions for him to throw it in the cart. Peter quickly shakes hands with Mr. Martin, thanks him for his confidence, and as quickly as he met Mr. Windt he’s rolling down the road with him, out of Gettysburg, poised to experience life in a way he’d never imagined he would.

NEXT UP: Peter writes a letter home to Charlotte after Mr. Windt suggests he do so, and Kate’s marriage shows premature signs of trouble not long before she gets pregnant. 

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Big Buff Bald Guy

Had another long winded complex dream, but the most memorable part was at the end when I was putting something around the neck of this big buff bald guy and then we started making out. And he was a REAALLLLYYYY good kisser. I also found it interesting/amusing that the “big buff bald guy” is probably the opposite of who, in reality, I imagine myself ending up with.

Only thing better than a damn good dream make out sesh….. a REAL LIFE make out sesh. Like for realz, it’s been WAYYYYY too long since even a mediocre make out experience. *sigh*

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Love, Actually

Can I just take a moment to say…

Love, Actually is a FUCKING GOOD MOVIE.

It basically wraps up in a neat little pile everything I wish my dreams to be. Funny, cute, bittersweet, romantic, sometimes sad, but ultimately uplifting and emotional. It doesn’t really have the action sequences that sometimes I enjoy, but even without those Love, Actually never fails to move me.

Speaking of action movies with romantic subplots, I watched In Time today, with Justin Timberlake and Amanda Seyfried and while it had it’s issues which I won’t get into there, it was ultimately a very interesting concept and had good action elements. It lacked some cinematic creativity and a distinct visual style to go along with it’s sci-fi original concept (Inception has spoiled me in this regard) but overall I found it entertaining. It’s another case of the quality of the actors saving the otherwise less than impressive cinematic elements.

[It was also shitty video quality so who’s the say I wouldn’t feel differently had I seen this in the theater or in proper DVD quality?]

I digress. Love, Actually expresses just about all the emotion I desire in my dreams and stories. And adding in action sequences effectively, and in support of the romantic plot line, but not focusing on it – that’s even more ideal.

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The Beach and Anna Torv

I had a good dream last night!

I suppose it all technically started with coaching a high school softball team and agonizing over who to cut and who to keep with my fellow coaches. The only real reason I mention this is because there is a sneaky reference back to this softball team at the very end of the dream.

Eventually the dream transitioned to finding a beach house to stay at for a frisbee tournament. We looked through one that was nice and had lots of sleeping space. I had a possibly sort of thing going on with one of the other players but it was all at the beginning flirty stages.

We looked at about 3 beach houses that were all very big, some were dirtier than others, and so the decision was to go back to the original white beach house we had looked at. HOWEVER, in the time it took to look through all these beach houses a significant amount of time had passed (Time warp!), let’s say a year, and not everybody was there anymore, including my crush. 😦 So while I was still looking around at all their beach houses (they  had more than 3 turns out) I also had it in my head to find my crush cause I knew they were still around somewhere. So eventually I asked the land lady if she knew where my crush was and she was like oh yeah they own that white beach house up there and its not a beach cafe called, like, Rickey Lichey or something. It made perfect sense in my dream, but I don’t really understand the name NOW because I think their name was like Ko’ohou or something vaguely Hawaiin.

So I went up there and they’re married, or perhaps just engaged, and for me it’s like WHOA rush of emotions and I can kind of tell they are having the same reaction but just hiding it better in front of their fiancé.

Then for some reason I decide to go looking for a house with them. They want to buy a house and I guess I’m invited. Maybe I’m looking for a house to? So I can be close to my crush? But not to break them up necessarily? I don’t know. We pass the frisbee fields and I’m insisting to our guide that if I did live in this house I would require a midnight to 7am noise curfew so I could sleep. And she is all up in arms about this like it’s ridiculous. Maybe that’s a reference to Housefellow anxiety or something.

Then we get to the house that my crush and their fiancé want to look at and it’s a very nice house. Attached is another smaller house, so I guess it’s like a Papa Bear/ Baby bear duplex, where one is significantly bigger than the other. But here’s the call back reference! Two of my old softball players are living in the smaller part and come out and see me and we all say Hey! to each other. How fun! I would say they resembled Mariah and Emily the most, of any of my real life softball charges.

That’s only a brief exchange and we continue to the Papa bear half of the house. It has dark, rich wood everywhere, very masculine. It is at this point that my crush turns into Anna Torv! And it’s probably safe to say I have a total girl crush on Anna Torv so her appearance here is fine by me. She starts acting all strange, almost doubtful that she wants to do this, and in my head I’m imaging she and I, not her and her fiancé, living here and making it a home. I see that’s she’s freaking out so I try to be a friend and take her into a secluded room and talk it out with her.

At this point the dream ended, but I enjoyed it so much I continued it a bit, though admittedly not much. My brain is wired like a happy ending romantic comedy, so turns out she still carries a torch for me, or at least it has rekindled upon my arrival at the beach cafe. So though I didn’t really get this far in my head I know that we get back together, she apologetically dumps her fiancé, and we live happily ever after at the beach house cafe, where we originally met/started to crush on one another.

Based on all the major stories I’ve created, one theme that seems to come up is long term torch-carrying. Peter and Kate, sort of, not really, but they knew each other at least; Ulysses being gone for 15 years; Hidden Twin liking Rebellion girl since elementary; and now me carrying a torch for Anna Torv and vice versa.

Maybe that’s why I love Adele’s Someone Like You so much (though technically that’s not a happy ending song).

[Note: I bet the setting of this dream was partially inspired by my favorite new show this season, Revenge. Who wouldn’t want to live on the beach after watching that show?]

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The Civil War: Drama Drama Drama

Here’s what I”m thinking:

Our story begins at Kate’s wedding to Joseph. Peter and Kate’s fathers are friends, thus why the Bramfields are invited. Peter, however, could care less and is still reeling from his and his father’s daily tiff. It’s really not for any good reason except that Peter and his father haven’t gotten along ever since his mother died.

See, Peter did not react well to the grief of losing his mother. He’s been stuck in an anger phase for about 5 years, and his anger is most often directed at his father. Robert reacted to his wife’s death very differently. His strategy was to just move on with life as if nothing had changed. Don’t talk about it and the grief will subside. Besides, as a single parent he now had more work to do. For the first year after his wife’s death he hired a local woman to do some chores and look after the children a few days a week, but Peter’s anger quickly derailed that plan. Charlotte was similarly aged to the neighbor’s children and they were nice enough to look after her and let her tag along. Peter, however, was largely left to his own devices (if he wasn’t grudgingly doing something with or for his father), and this fueled his anger. As Robert tried to teach his son important life lessons, Peter aimed his anger at his father and their relationship quickly deteriorated down a path of resentment and bitterness and miscommunication.

So naturally, after 5 years of this dynamic, tempers tend to boil over rather quickly, and being a teenager still, Peter’s emotions rage. Albeit it with a slight scowl on his face, Peter is polite enough not to explode at Kate and Joseph’s wedding, but as soon as they’re out the door he begins laying in to his father, completely ignoring his best friend Sam.

When they arrive home things only get worse. Everyone knows this one is going to be a bad one. Robert trivializes Peter’s anger which only makes Peter lash out harder. The argument gets so out of hand Peter blames Robert for his mother’s death, as if Robert’s negligence cause her consumption, and at this point, Robert tells Peter to leave. He won’t stand for the haneous disrespect Peter has shown him over the years. “Your mother died 5 years ago! You can get over it or you can leave! It’s your choice.” – is more or less what Robert conveys to his son.

Peter storms out of the room to his bedroom where he attempts to cool down for the rest of the night. Before she goes to bed, Charlotte comes in to talk to Peter. She’s 11 years old, he’s 18. She’s clearly saddened and maybe a bit scared by the argument that took place at dinner. Peter loves his sister very much. She is the brightness in his life. She is innocent and sweet and he is very protective of her. Peter apologizes for her having to witness them fighting and of course she is understanding. She asks Peter if things will always be this way? Peter hopes not. Charlotte sighs sadly. “Are you going to leave?” she asks. Peter thinks about it for a minute and then considers Charlotte. “I don’t know. Maybe it would be better if I didn’t live here. It would be better for you not to have to see us fight.” Tears formed in Charlotte’s eyes. “I don’t want you to go. Why do you so angry with one another?” Peter takes her hands and looks her in the eye and evades her question, “It’s time for you to go to bed. Don’t worry about father and I. We’ll be OK.” At that moment Robert pokes his head in the door and tells Charlotte it’s time for bed. Peter kisses her on the forehead and they say goodnight.

Peter lays awake a little while longer, considering for the first time the consequences of the family dynamic on Charlotte. It’s clear to him that it’s not good for her to be around the fighting. And he’s grateful that she has friends and support outside the family. It doesn’t take him long though to realize that not only would it be good for Charlotte if Peter left home, but it would be good for Peter too. He’s old enough to live on his own and he could use a break from the constant tension.

At that point he makes the decision to leave. He doesn’t know where he’s going to go or what he’s going to do, but he would rather not have to confront his father about it in the morning so he packs some basics and around midnight heads over to Sam’s house. He throws a pebble at Sam’s window and when Sam comes to the kitchen door at the back of the house Peter asks if he can stay the night in the barn. Sam, being the best best friend ever, says of course, and sets him up in the guest cabin, but at Peter’s insistence with only a blanket, as he doesn’t intend on staying more than one night and doesn’t want them to have to make the bed after him.

Peter leaves early in the morning, around dawn, leaving the blanket neatly by the door and heads to the market to search out opportunities. Maybe it’s fate, but he’s subconsciously pulled toward his favorite blacksmith. This particular blacksmith (name TBD) has been good to the Bramfields over the years and he’s someone with whom Peter has developed a friendship.

NEXT UP: Peter becomes a blacksmith’s apprentice and heads south! duhn duhn DUUUHHHN!!

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Every Dream is Special… Sort Of.

What makes a dream memorable?

Welp, sometimes it’s hard to pinpoint exactly why. The end.

For realz though, I think the dreams I find most memorable are those that follow the same principles as my favorite movies. I’m not saying that my most memorable dreams are LIKE my favorite movies. But rather those that have a simple plot, relatable characters, and an emotional core that is truly moving, whether negative, positive, or somewhere in between.

This is why I turn some of my dreams into stories, because they do sometimes have thematic elements to them. I guess my brain is just wired, possibly trained, to dream that way. This isn’t to say that my dreams always make sense, cause we all know dreams can make absolutely no sense. Objects, people, and scenes can dissolve into something completely different in the blink of an eye.

It’s also important for dreams to be simple. An overly complex dream is tiring. If the first dream I had is the one I want to remember, it can totally fall by wayside under the memory-weight of the ca-gillion other subsequent dreams I may have that night. So the simpler the better. In this instance, it’s also dumb luck. Sometimes you just can’t control how much you dream in a night. Unless you wake yourself up after a goodie. Which I can do… but generally prefer not to because sometimes waking yourself up in the middle of the night makes you lose sleep and be more focused on falling back to sleep rather than remembering your dream.

IMPORTANT NOTE: It requires some effort to remember your dreams. You can’t just have them and wake up in the morning and expect to remember them 8 hours later. When you wake up, keep your eyes closed, don’t move, and review the dream over and over again until you have a good grasp on it. So you know what’s also the worst? When you’re woken up suddenly, say by an alarm, and quite literally don’t have time to lay in bed and remember your dream. 

But I digress. I guess if I had to boil it down to a few factors I would say the dream has to be simple and emotional. It has to spawn further thought and consideration (beyond dream analysis). It’s like reading a book or watching a movie. If you’re not hooked in the first 5 or 10 minutes it’s probably just average. That doesn’t mean it isn’t entertaining, or that it is completely lacking in value, but in THIS GIRL’s head, average ain’t worth writin’ down.

 

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What a Bummer Dream

I dreamt that I saw my Lady Camels on TV, and they subsequently lost the game, but I was excited to go to the Alumni game but when I got there nobody was particularly excited to see me. =( First of all, I didn’t have anywhere to stay yet (but my mom was staying in a hotel in town because she drove me????), and I didn’t want to stay with my mom.

So after I’d stealed myself to the idea that I wouldn’t know where I was sleeping until later in the day, I started walking around campus looking for friends who would now be seniors, and those that I did come across were totally blasé about it to the point of totally ignoring me. What the hell was I supposed to do all day without anybody to hang out with? WTF man?! What a bummer dream.

 

COMING UP: Pretty much all my dreams are interesting or weird or creative. So what is it that makes any particular dream stand out above the rest? As one worth writing down or remembering?

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Civil War Story Tidbits

Peter Bramfield lives in Gettysburg, PA circa the American Civil War. His mother died when he was 12 or 13. He has a younger sister, Charlotte. Their father is Robert Bramfield. Peter and Robert clash regularly and their issues with one another stem largely from Peter’s mother’s death.

Kate Vernon (née Phillips) is about the same age as Peter. She is longtime friends with Sam Wills, (who also happens to be Peter’s best friend). They both lost parents as children and relate on those grounds…

[Now that I think about it, wouldn’t Peter fit into this “gang” of single parent children? Perhaps Kate and Sam had much healthier grieving processes, thus Peter doesn’t feel he gets anything out of being part of the gang. Peter doesn’t feel his experience with losing a parent relates to Kate and Sam’s.]

…Kate marries Jospeh Vernon at 17 or 18 and immediately gets pregnant with twins – Angela and Miles. However, as soon as Jospeh catches the scent of war and adventure, he unceremoniously deserts Kate and the twins to join the army, with no promise of return or future involvement.

Sam Wills is Peter’s and Kate’s best friend. His family is prominent in Gettysburg. His elder brother David Wills will eventually organize the dedication of the Gettysburg National Cemetery after the famous 3 day Battle at Gettysburg in 1863. David has always carried a torch for Kate, though he’s not a scoundrel! He doesn’t try and steal her away from her husband! Sam is a well respected figure in town and works with David to organize the cemetery dedication. Sam never marries because he’s totally secret-Dumbledore-gay. BOOSH! But that’s only for me to know.

I THIIIIIINK that’s all I’m gonna reveal right now.

[Note: I do work around some historical events. For instance, David Wills really DID help purchase the land and subsequently organize the dedication of the Gettysburg National Cemetery, including inviting and housing Abraham Lincoln before he delivered his famous Gettysburg Address. But some personal details have been tweaked to fit in with the fictional aspects of the story.]

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4 Thoughts

4 thoughts to discuss:

  • Dream: “I like you too much to actually be with you.”
  • It’s the worst when I get lost in a dream, and then it changes, and I can’t revert back. Damnit.
  • Alien abductions are waking dreams but are still scary as shit.
  • ADDITIONAL ITEM: writing by hand v. computer

Item #1: Dream

So the other night I had a dream where I was hanging out with someone for like an hour or more and we were having a really good time, really connecting, and then I had to go somewhere because we were at some convention maybe, and I had to run an errand for the boss lady. So then as I’m just finishing this errand they come up to me again and tell me that they really like me, but we can’t be together because they like me too much. What??? I don’t get it. I’m trying to imagine this situation in the real world and the only way I can make sense of it is that a person, or two people, like each other THAT MUCH, the would become sort of slaves to one another? Maybe some maturation needs to be done? Some independence and identity searching? I don’t know. It was pretty bitterwseet though in the moment.

Which leads me to my second thought…

Item #2: Getting lost in a dream, literally.

Isn’t it the worst when you’re having a dream where you’ve travelled somewhere, reached your goal perhaps, or you’d just like to stay where you are, but you’re in a mall or something, so as you go looking for the next store to hit up the scene starts to change into a cave system or a theme park and you can’t retrace your footsteps because everything keeps changing no matter which way you go? The WORST.

Item #3: Alien Abduction

So I’ve read that people who say they’ve been abducted by aliens have actually experienced a particularly disorienting form of dreaming. Dreams occur during the REM cycle of sleep. During this time brain activity is the same as when you are awake.  When you sleep you are largely paralyzed. Many people who claim to have been abducted by aliens claim that they could not move while the aliens stood over them, took them up into their spaceship, performed experiments on them, etc. So the theory behind this phenomena is that these people are technically asleep, but are slightly more conscious than dreaming (eyes may be open and senses registering sounds, smells), and still paralyzed. Sounds scary as shit no matter how you look at it. I was afraid for a time when I was younger to roll over in bed because I thought an alien would be standing there. Same with ghosts. Though to be fair, I’m still sort of afraid of ghosts. Though more afraid of shadows and body-less whispers. Ewwgghhhh gives me the chills just thinking about it.

Item #4: I like writing long hand

And boy can it take a long time. I don’t know completely why, but I enjoy writing my stories long hand. It feels more organic I guess. Sometimes, if I haven’t written in a while, I’ll feel the urge to write something. It may resemble a journal or may be a weirdly meta paragraph about the fact that I’m writing about writing and I’m being meta about it. When I write my stories its not formatted like a story, it’s really just my brain thinking through the story. It’s not particularly creative, it’s just a REALLLY long thought. Also, if I DO attempt to format the story and get into real creative writing, the formatting is much easier. Sure, the computer does it all nice and perfect, but I have to use this shortcut and click that box, and then move it all back for the next paragraph. This complaint is more in reference to screenplays which have very specific formatting requirements. And I do have a general interest in writing screenplays. I’m tentatively attempting to adapt The Seventh Tower series by Garth Nix. I’ve outlined it into 3 films (it’s a 6 book series) and I think I’ve got some decent character development and story arcs. So writing screenplays in long hand results in lots of pages because of the formatting. So in that regard long hand vs. computer is kind of 6 of 1, half a dozen of another.

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