The Limits of NaNotechnology

National Novel Writing Month starts tomorrow.  For the last two years I’ve participated, and for the last two years it has been the only season during which I can actually write.  The rest of the year, forget it.  In fact, it’s probably instructive that I have yet to crack open either of my previous projects for any revision.

This year, though, I’m just not feeling it.  November is still a handful of hours away, but I am as dry as toast.  Nothing is set in stone, but I have a feeling I may sit this year out.  If that’s the case, best of luck to my writing buddies and we’ll see you again next year.

Of course, this could all change.  I may be right there next to you at the starting line. 

Tonight’s a swimming night.  We’ll see if that helps.  At any rate, thanks for visiting, and good luck.

Throwing Up Ghosts

There are many, many tropes in the anime world, but I was interested in three of them in particular.  These three are symbols of emotional expression, and if you watch enough anime, you tend to see them a lot.

The first is the Broken Cross of Anger.

I am SO mad right now!

Sometimes this can appear on the fist as well. 

The second is the Huge Drop of Embarassment, in the case below illustrated with its frequent accomplice, the Cat Lip of Meekness.

I overstepped, and now I hope no one will notice me much.

The last one was the hardest to come by good examples, um, of.  This is the Mushroom-Sign of Relief, though I prefer to think of it as “Throwing up Ghosts.”


The last one is the most difficult because it’s so variable.  It can be wide or round, and the “stalk” can have varying amounts of flair.  (I believe these characteristics are due to the amount of relief.)  It also tends to pass by without the benefit of the brain sitting up and saying, “Okay, what are the characteristics of that thing that just appeared?”  (Any discussion of brain-works is, of course, limited to my own.)

So while drawing the frist two were easy enough, the last presented a bit of a puzzle.  Fortunately, Steven Den Beste is pretty much an Encyclopaedia of Anime, and came through with a sterling example of the form.  As a matter of fact, the ghost in the third image was pulled directly from the still he provided.  So there you have it.

For the curious, the above images are from a long-gestating, long-developing project for another site that will probably never be completed, just because it’s the ultimate albatross, and I can’t see it relinquishing that role any time soon.  I mean, it’s so good at it.  In one part of the project, the rough sketch I started with looked kind of anime-ish, so I decided to pursue that angle.  Why?  I wish I knew the answer to that one. 

The reason she looks like she’s in the shadows is because, well, she’s in the shadows.  In a manner of speaking.  If the damned project ever gets finished, perhaps I’ll provide a link so that there’s some context to wrap her in.

Doesn’t seem all that likely, though stranger things have happened.

Sorry about the tiny font; WordPress’ editor is really starting to bother me with the many things it can’t do.  But thanks for visiting, anyway, and be well always.