The Pickled Mushroom

Finally back on track <3

April 17, 2010
Leave a Comment

It’s taken me long enough to get back to writing for NaNo, but it looks like I’ve finally back on the bandwagon I fell off of. I spent 8pm to 8am writing, downing one cup of black tea after the other, and although my word count is rather humble I’m satisfied. I managed only slightly more than 12k words in 12 hours – compared to the 20k that did in 14 hours during NaNo, that’s really not much. But I wrote out the plot I wanted to and I’m pretty happy with that.

I’m really coming to an end now with the story. It’s still a while off still, 20k or 30k at least, but the plot is almost at an end. I’m very excited and also very sad – the ending is rather sad and I’m considering writing an alternative ending as well, just to allow my beloved main character to be happy for a bit. Poor thing really is unlucky.

I also got around to writing the story of Albert’s life and death! It was so awesome, he suddenly kept giving me all of these words and even came up with a terrific reason for things happening later that I wasn’t sure how to include without making them unbelievable. He even provided me with this massive Dorian Gray fetish fuel – woah there. I love you so, so, so much Albert. And you too, Bas, for thinking your little thoughts and being an adorable grump once you’re sick.

Sooo… To wrap this up, behind the cut there’s a small excerpt from my session. Abraxas’ POV. In good NaNo tradition, un-edited, so there’s awkward wording, possible spelling and grammar errors ahead.


Mr Glow Stick and I are back together!

April 16, 2010
Leave a Comment

Just wanted to pop in: in 20 minutes I’m going to pull a fresh all-nighter! I’m going to have a glow stick, black tea and the laptop all to myself. I’m going to (pardon my French) finish this fucker if I do nothing else. Weeeeeh! I’m writing for NaNo again!

Slugging my way to… where, actually?

February 16, 2010

School is CRAZY. I always thought I knew what school stress is, but I’ve never, NEVER, had as much to do as I currently do. Doesn’t help much that I’m having a major case of fangirling over various Naruto characters. Deary. Please bear with me being a lazy bum, I’ll get back to writing and posting sometime.

Anyway, there’ll be another post coming up sometime on my current fangirl obsession. I might even get around to writing some fanfiction, I’ve got something planned out. Whoot! Has been aging since I’ve written any fanfiction.

I also hardly find any time to write, I can’t even remember the last time I was working on my NaNo novel. Grrr. I could’ve finished the first draft by now if I had more time, motivation and inspiration. Hear me cry. In any case, here’s another small excerpt, from Jazz’ POV. One day I’ll finish this story, really. Go past the cut to see more of the excerpt! Drama ensues ❤

For a while we simply sat without talking, but then Bas moved as if to shrug off the silence that had gathered above our table. “He’ll be okay,” he said, sounding remarkably convinced all of a sudden.
I just nodded. “I think so,” I gave back. Bas was silent for a moment longer, studying his cup intently. Eventually, he began tracing the pattern on it with his finger.
“So, um…” he began slowly. “What was that yesterday? Where were you?” He didn’t sound particularly suspicious asking this, just curious and a little apprehensive perhaps. I still couldn’t help feeling like I was on thin ice suddenly.


NaNo is over, but the madness remains!

January 29, 2010
1 Comment

So, hey guys. Yes, I’m still alive, and I made it through NaNo with 150,137 words by the end of November! Talk about awesome. Anyway, I wasn’t finished yet, so on it goes – and is still going. (I’m at 241k right now, and still going.)

I’ll be putting up some musings and excerpts later, but for now I’m just going to tell you that I’m struggling a bit right now, but I’ll take part in FebNoWriMo (same as NaNo, but inofficial and in February) to give myself the kick in the bum that I apparently need to get my 1,667 a day done. Let’s see how it goes.

I’m estimating about another 40k or so to wrap the story up – I’ve got a vague idea, only problem is that I still need to work out the particulars of the plot so it all works smoothly and I don’t have to worry about logic while writing. Durr. So, stay tuned!

Sherlock Holmes and the wonderful PLING (63k!)

November 16, 2009

Well well well, it’s been a while. I reached the magical 50k words barrier on the 11th of November because two hours before midnight I suddenly decided that it would be a fun thing to crack the minimum on 11/11. So, I stayed glued (woah, just spelled that ‘glood’ at first – should get to bed soon!) to my keyboard until shortly before midnight.

Since then it’s been a few days and now I’m proudly at 63k, EXACTLY. My daily average word count so far is at 4,200 words which has been better, but I can live with it. Currently I’m more at around 3k daily, though – and things have been stalling a bit, but it’s getting better now. Thank goodness, I need some more plot happening! At first Albert didn’t want to appear at all, now I’m having a hard time squeezing in scenes with other characters in between bits of him and Abraxas having crazy human-ghost sex. (Not really, but I always wanted to write that just to fulfill the cliché. Go, me.)

Anyways, today I ran into a bit of a problem that had be tearing out my hair for an hour before I figured out a way to work with it. (Please note: I don’t solve problems. I work with them.) So, Albert died in 1997. A big part of his first memories he gets back concern literature. Well, I had this PERFECT scheme of him having read all the Sherlock Holmes stories when they appeared, and he also owned his own copy of the complete works, all that jazz. Abraxas goes to a second hand book shop and happens to find that exact book, Albert’s name still in it and everything. Whoot.

Doesn’t sound so bad, right? Thought so, too. Until I checked my own copy of the complete novels and short stories. The last story wasn’t published until 1927. Dammit. But, being the clever little girl that I am, I also remembered that Holmes faked his death sometime and the series was on hold for a few years, including people publicly mourning his death with black armbands and veils, until he was ‘resurrected’ in The Adventure of the Empty House. Luckily, these years happened to be from 1993 to 1903. (In 1901, the Hound of the Baskervilles was published which takes place before Holmes’ alleged death chronologically, his actual return only came in 1903.)

This is something I could actually work with because in this manner, Albert died when all the world thought that Holmes was death for good and there must surely have been a ‘complete’ compilation around, so all’s well with the world. We also have a touching scene of Albert discovering that the hero of his youth actually ‘lived’ still.

This is what I love about writing, seriously.

Now, to leave the topic of NaNo for a moment and explain the PLING in the title: even before I took my first bellydance lesson I knew that I wanted to learn to play the finger cymbals (or zills, as they are also called). Zilling and dancing simultaneously is a skill that is considered essential to claim professionality by many. (Although, of course, there are people that disagree.) I myself love the mere concept and have been itching to reach a level to try it myself.

Well, my teacher heard from my eagerness to learn to play and invited me to take part in the cymbal project at the dance school and so I had my first real life acquaintance with zills yesterday.


I actually surprised myself by being able to dance and zill quite decently already – not perfect, of course, but I had been expecting to only be able to zill OR walk at a time, not to zill and actually move in a way that could be called dance if you’re optimistic. This is so many kinds of awesome I can’t even begin to tell you, really. I also got alphabet soup for the soul when people could hardly believe I’ve only been learning to dance for one and a half months. Goodness, I’m feeling like an idiot for sitting here with a huge, delirious grin on my face.

And so I bought my own first set of zills and am happily zilling up and down besides my bed in my room, annoying my rabbit. I already muffled every zill with masking tape, but they are still a bit loud, so I try to practice as much as possible down in the living-room where I won’t be disturbing Sally. (Only the neighbours, but they’ll have to live with it.)

Anyway, I should be off to bed now – it’s 12:30pm and I have to get up early. Laters, everyone!


France vs Germany & Austria (40k!)

November 9, 2009
Leave a Comment

Well, who would have thought that? The ML’s (= municipal liaison) of France contacted the one of my home region, Germany & Austria, and suggested a massive international word war. Well, what can I say? We accepted.

There’s three disciplines:

  1. average word count
  2. percentage of winners (= people that reached 50k words or more)
  3. percentage of people that donated to NaNo

And we have to win two out of these three, of course.

Needless to say, this competition is extremely motivational and I’ve been typing like crazy for the past days, including today’s 4k (which I may still expand upon tonight) that finally brought me to beautiful 40k. I’m so proud of myself, and I still have so much to go. So much fun!
Now, have some excerpt-y goodness before I get back upstairs.


November 9, 2009
Leave a Comment

First off, I forgot to mention earlier that today I visited the basar at my bellydance studio. I loved it; my dance teacher improvised a beledi that was just incredible, I can’t wait to learn that. (She looked stunning in her dress too.) I bought a whole lot of stuff: a new hip scarf (red with beautiful red beaded crocheted hem), a cd, earrings and two necklaces. I could just barely resist the set of zills sitting there, but maybe if I decide if I’ll take part in the zills project. (I so want to do that, but I’m not sure if I’m actually at a point already where I can start to learn zilling. I’ll ask on Wednesday.)

What’s more, there was also a book market in our town and I bought a book from 1910 called “Women and their world” and three post cards stemming from World War I. Beautiful portraits on the front! They also gave me the inspiration on how to do an important scene in my novel.

It has been a long while since I have felt as strongly about two of my literary characters as I do about Jazz and Barb.

I love writing them.

And I wrote them a love declaration, just because. Right after I finished last night. I don’t care if no one ever reads this, but it has to get out. Here’s to you, Jazz and Barb.


Fifty Percent Gay (36k!)

November 9, 2009
Leave a Comment

As hedgefairy already noticed in her comment on my last post, the name of this blog has changed again, and it’s probably going to stay at least for as long as I will be working on my novel. Now, to make the explanation I gave hedgefairy understandable for everyone else on here who doesn’t speak German:

The Pickled Mushroom is a setting in my novel, more specifically a pub that’s pretty much the most exciting place for a newcomer band to feature. I actually worked a lot with the impressions I got from the Irish pub and restaurant Hapenny Bridge in Geelong during my exchange when I saw Kate Miller-Heidke playing there. The Pickled Mushroom has a very similar layout, but is weirder, featuring an eccentric owner that never fails to remind me of Master Guy in disguise. (Hello, Naruto readers out there!) This owner also happens to be named in a special way, he is Mr Ian Woon. If you change those letters around, it spells out NaNoWriMo, and featuring him in their novel is an endeavour every good NaNoer tries their hand at. (Or at least, a lot do.) Piece of useless side information: he was actually called Mario at first, before I changed my mind.

So. We’ve got the setting, we know Jazz is playing with his band The Stingrays and he’s pretty nervous. Barbara is there and Abraxas too, his girlfriend Emilie and a whole bunch of others. The concert is awesome and stuff happens. Wanna meet the band? Have some of the unedited goodness. (There’s another post coming up right now, just to not make this one too long.) Just for your info, Marcel’s lead singer, London guitar, Andy bass and Jazz drums.


2 Story Excerpts – Enter the Fun! (26k!)

November 7, 2009

As you will have noticed, I changed the design of the blog, simply so I can now proudly display my word count widget to the left. Isn’t it pretty? Makes me all fuzzy to look at it.

Anyway, as promised, here’s two excerpts from what I’ve written so far. Please note that NaNo is for writing, not editing, so it’s pretty raw still, there’s typos and awkward sentence structures in there, unripe concepts of sentences, and lots of word repetitions. If you can bear that, read on!

6 Days into the Madness – and loving it!

November 6, 2009
Leave a Comment

Why, hello there. I am still alive and well and writing – the latter being the most important right now, of course.

If anyone has had a glance at my page over at NaNoWriMo, they will no doubt have seen that I’m doing pretty well so far – 22k words on day 6 (and I haven’t even really started writing yet for today) is an achievement I’m really proud of.

So, how has it been going? I started off with a great 7,225 words by midnight of the first day and did well except for Wednesday when I reached “only” 1,317 because I procrastinated my writing until past eleven pm and had to start hammering out something before I got a total of zero that day. At school I’m constantly being stared at when I explain that I’m writing a probably-100k-novel just for fun, and people are learning not to ask me how I am today, but what my word count is.

Click for more, including a super-duper-special-exclusive sentence straight from the novel.

NaNoWriMo… will get you, too!

November 1, 2009

So, there’s this thing called National Novel Writing Month, short: NaNoWriMo. I’ve heard about it a few times in the last few years, but never thought much of it. Well, this year I’m along on the ride and have right now 25 minutes left until November, until absolute literary business.

I must be masochistic. I’m about to start in 24 minutes and I don’t even have names for the majority of the characters in my first scene. At least I’ve got a bit of a plot outline and an idea of the beginning, middle and end of the story, which isn’t too bad considering that enough people start without any plot whatsoever. (Although I have to say that I have 22 minutes to go and am feeling the impulse to ditch my whole plot and write a pirate story instead. Must… resist… won’t… give in…)

Now, this is a bit of a first for me – not just NaNo, but the story itself. It’s going to be a ghost story, which is kind of funny considering that I really don’t like ghosts. (I don’t believe in them, but I prefer to think that they really don’t exist, because they’d scare my pants off me.) Now, last night I was happily staying up late, reading on the internet… And suddenly the old CD player in the livingroom goes off! Let’s just put it down to some technical weirdness, okay? I don’t even want to think about ghosts before writing a story about them. Gladly, I’ve got only one ghost, and he’s not the scary yucky type. Whew. Love you, Albert.

Anyway, let’s have a look at my synopsis:

Ghost of a Touch (working title)

Abraxas Timothy Holt, nicknamed Bas, can hardly believe his luck when he gets to move into his own small house, which is very old but just perfect for him to live out his student life and have some space to create his paintings. What he didn’t know he would get in the bargain is the ghost of a young man that died a century ago and knows only his name, Albert, but cannot for the death of him remember how he died.

As time goes on and the two slowly start unravelling the mystery of Albert’s life and death, they develop a curious relationship that leads Bas to question all the rest of his relationships, including those with his family and girlfriend.

Doesn’t that sound exciting? I filed it as “Mystery & Suspense” because weirdly enough, there’s a board for “Horror & Supernatural”, but only a category for “Horror”. Oh well.

May I mention that I love Abraxas’ name?

Anyway, twelve minutes two go and I still have no names for those other people. Perfect! Let’s get cracking.

You can follow my progress here.

Something to think about.

October 3, 2009
Leave a Comment

Neither of these were written by me, but it’s something we all should give a second (or a third, or a fourth, or…) thought.

The Top Ten Reasons Why Anti-Gay Marriage People Are Stupid:

1.) Being gay is not natural. Real Americans always reject unnatural things like eyeglasses, polyester, liposuction and air conditioning.

2.) Gay marriage will encourage people to be gay, in the same way that hanging around tall people will make you tall.

3.) Legalizing gay marriage will open the door to all kinds of crazy behavior. People may even wish to marry their pets because a dog has legal standing and can sign a marriage contract.

4.) Straight marriage has been around a long time and hasn’t changed at all; women are still property, blacks still can’t marry whites, and divorce is still illegal.

5.) Straight marriage will be less meaningful if gay marriage were allowed; the sanctity of Brittany Spears’ 55-hour just-for-fun marriage would be destroyed.

6.) Straight marriages are valid because they produce children. Gay couples, infertile couples, and old people shouldn’t be allowed to marry because our orphanages aren’t full yet, and the world needs more children.

7.) Obviously gay parents will raise gay children, since straight parents only raise straight children.

8.) Gay marriage is not supported by religion. In a theocracy like ours, the values of one religion are imposed on the entire country. That’s why we have only one religion in America. (Take that Fred Phelps!)

9.) Children can never succeed without a male and a female role model at home. That’s why we as a society expressly forbid single parents to raise children.

10.) Gay marriage will change the foundation of society; we could never adapt to new social norms. Just like we haven’t adapted to cars, the service-sector economy, or longer life spans.

Re-post this if you believe in legalizing gay marriage.

Sad, But True:

I am the girl kicked out of her home because I confided in my mother that I am a lesbian.
I am the prostitute working the streets because nobody will hire a transsexual woman.
I am the sister who holds her gay brother tight through the painful, tear-filled nights.
We are the parents who buried our daughter long before her time.
I am the man who died alone in the hospital because they would not let my partner of twenty-seven years into the room.
I am the foster child who wakes up with nightmares of being taken away from the two fathers who are the only loving family I have ever had. I wish they could adopt me.
I am one of the lucky ones, I guess. I survived the attack that left me in a coma for three weeks, and in another year I will probably be able to walk again.
I am not one of the lucky ones. I killed myself just weeks before graduating high school. It was simply too much to bear.
We are the couple who had the realtor hang up on us when she found out we wanted to rent a one-bedroom for two men.
I am the person who never knows which bathroom I should use if I want to avoid getting the management called on me.
I am the mother who is not allowed to even visit the children I bore, nursed, and raised. The court says I am an unfit mother because I now live with another woman.
I am the domestic-violence survivor who found the support system grow suddenly cold and distant when they found out my abusive partner is also a woman.
I am the domestic-violence survivor who has no support system to turn to because I am male.
I am the father who has never hugged his son because I grew up afraid to show affection to other men.
I am the home-economics teacher who always wanted to teach gym until someone told me that only lesbians do that.
I am the man who died when the paramedics stopped treating me as soon as they realized I was transsexual.
I am the person who feels guilty because I think I could be a much better person if I did not have to always deal with society hating me.
I am the man who stopped attending church, not because I don’t believe, but because they closed their doors to my kind.
I am the person who has to hide what this world needs most, love.
I am the person who is afraid of telling his loving Christian parents he loves another male.

Re-post this if you believe homophobia is wrong. Please do your part to end it.

Oriental and Medieval Dreams

September 21, 2009
1 Comment

As it’s usual for me now, this has taken a while. School is keeping me incredibly busy and there’s a bunch of personal projects that are taking up a lot of my time, so not much blogging time left.

This is to write about my current obsession: oriental dance! Belly dancing is only an aspect of the whole, but the subject is so fascinating! I have worked a lot this month and now I’ve got some money to spend and decided to try out dancing. My first lesson is on Wednesday, just to try it out, but I hope to make it a regular part of my life.

I’m very excited and nervous, but I’ll just have to see – no telling yet before I haven’t been there. Let’s just hope for the best.

Last weekend was very tiring, but Saturday was exciting – there was a tiny medieval festival in a neighbouring town, and it was really good. I loved the band and bought their latest CD, they’re called Versengold and are absolutely brilliant. I especially love their song “Und schon wieder rollt ein Kopf…” (= “And again a head is rolling…”).

So, keeping it short for today, but I’ll have to report from my lesson!

Frills and Bubbles

August 6, 2009
1 Comment

Last Saturday and Sunday was the first German lolita convention in Bonn, including a reading corner, gastronomy, indie brand stands, raffles, bring & buy and info talks. It was amazing! So many beautiful lolitas and so many great clothes. I didn’t get what I intended to (bloomers and a new petticoat) but instead bought a whole lot of other things:

– a jumperskirt by Bodyline, actually an Innocent World replica, but I don’t mind much
– a lace headpiece by Les Incroyables, matching the dress
– a Dunkelsüß shirt
– a pair of earrings and a matching necklace
– a cameo that I’ll make into a necklace or a brooch to match my Innocent World Musical Note jumperskirt

Oh dear! I’ll have to post pictures. Monday I went to the library just to bring back one book and got all dolled up in my new dress and everything. It was very funny!

I’ve also got a new game for my Nintendo DS, it’s called “Soul Bubbles” and is really great. You’re a soul herder and have to bring the souls of the deceased to the other world in a bubble, protecting them from getting lost in the way. The graphics and music are absolutely beautiful, and it’s very original. I love it!

Sweet 18

July 23, 2009

Now. First things first, so let’s start with the serious stuff. Ahem. I’m 18 years old since the 16th. … WOOHOOOO! Good. Well. I intended to do an entry on my birthday, but life got in the way and then I was simply lacking the motivation… Lazy me. Thanks to everyone who thought of it! I had awesome weather and got some nice things, including The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde (I’m so glad I’ve got my own copy now because it is one of my most favourite books ever, I’ll have to write an entry on it some time – homoeroticism, hedonism, Dandyism, shameless decadence, morally very questionable main characters, how can you not love it?) and Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen (of which I have so far only seen the TV version with Colin Firth – who, I may add, looks hot with sideburns – but I’ve read the first chapter and love it).

It was a rather quiet birthday, but that’s the way I expected it and I’m not sad about it. I’m still going to have a brunch with family and friends (and we’ll also celebrate my granny’s 73th which is on the same day) and I’m looking forward to it. I don’t really feel all that grown-up now, but, well… I guess that’s one of the things that creep up on you slowly. One of my favourite quotes that I’ve seen in an online signature: “So this is what it’s like to be an adult.”

My art is thriving currently and I’m proud to say I manage to get my hour a day done at least, be it something from my imagination or anatomical studies. (I’m doing a lot of David K. Rubins these days, but I’ve got Sehen und Verstehen by Gottfried Bammes from the library, which is brilliant too behind all those fancy words.) I’m very fond of brush and ink now and usually don’t even make a pencil sketch anymore but dilute the ink to varying degrees and paint over it more strongly once I’m sure how I want it to look. It certainly frees me up and gets me into the “zone”. (I usually notice I’m in it when I don’t take notice anymore when the song I’m listening to changes.) My sketchbook on ConceptArt.Org is getting updated pretty regularly, every few days at least.

Today my family and I spent at the Neanderthal museum, which I love dearly and have visited countless times. They’ve even got copies now of the Venuses of Willendorf and Lespugue and several other monolithic female figurines, which I have a soft spot for, especially since there’s some belief among Neopagans that they hint towards a widespread monolithic Goddess worship. There’s many, including me, who don’t think it likely, but it’s still a fascinating thought. Just by themselves, they are works of incredible detail and beauty. The museum even sold key chains and fridge magnets of the Venus of Willendorf! Seems almost a bit blasphemous (ha! good thing I don’t have a concept of blasphemy!) to me, but now I’ve got my own little Venus to bring me luck. I guess, why not?

I’m looking forward to the 8th of August: there’s going to be the first two day lolita event in Germany, the Dunkelsüß Lolita Market! Dunkelsüß is a foto community for German-speaking lolitas (so it includes people from Switzerland and Austria) and the market is going to include a bring & buy, stalls from German indie brands, info talks and the like. I’m going to be helping on Saturday, but if I can organize myself a place to stay overnight (meaning: find someone to stay with or get a tent) I’ll be there on Sunday too. I’m so excited!

Now it’s to get up to my room and get that hour of anatomy done. I also need to study motorscooters! (Blame Kate Miller-Heidke with her song Motorscooter – or better yet, listen to it.)

Next Page »