Hi, Kim Crow. You look nice today.
Hi, Kim Crow. Thanks, same back atcha!
Isn't it a bit odd to interview yourself?
As I see it, I live alone and I'm therefore prone to long bouts of talking to myself out loud. Writing it all down seemed like the next logical step. Besides, people often ask me if I write like I speak or if I speak like I write. Maybe this will shed some light on the subject?
So do you write like you speak or speak like you write?
I'm not sure. When I write, I am definitely hearing the words in my head before I get them written or typed. As I speak, I sometimes let the $3 word slip out here and there and folks will give me a hard time about it because they can't just Google it to figure out what I'm talking about.
Why don't they just ask you what it means?
I wonder the same thing every time it happens.
When you first started crowcrastination, you wrote short stories 250 words or less. But over time you've moved away from the format. Why?
I began this blog as an attempt to look productive at a job where I had nothing to do. Limiting myself to this format seemed like a way to create effective boundaries between myself and the Internet at large. Eventually I found it to be very limiting from a personal standpoint.
Well, as a form, short stories are difficult. A plot has to work within its format. It also was a challenge to make sure my narrative made sense in such a short word count. I usually embrace a challenge, but this one felt like a burden. I stopped writing here for awhile.
So you were too much of a critic? What made you start up again?
Being too critical of myself is almost always my problem. I re-upped and started writing again after someone I respect stumbled across my blog and gave me a hard time. I changed the content to be more megalomaniacal. This seemed to bode well with the platform of blogging.
How do you feel about talking about yourself all the time?
It's like a giant slice of awkward cake. It doesn't feel quite right, but in the end it is so delicious.
Don't get me started. This sort of over indulgence is what's made me lose and gain the same 25 lbs three times.
Well, cookies are your medium anyway. Care to share a favorite recipe or some baking tips?
Hmmm. I'll keep the recipes to myself for now. As for tips, I have 3:
- If the recipe calls for butter, use real butter.
- Don't skimp on the salt. Doctors say sodium is bad, but it does important things chemically to your cookies.
- Also, if you have the willpower, let your dough sit (refrigerated) overnight. The liquid in the eggs will soak up your flavors better. The dough will still be good for about 3 days.
Speaking of funky, you often talk about how your computer is acting strange.
True. I think it has either asthma or a seizure disorder. It has fits that interrupt my life many, many times per day.
Can you gauge your level of frustration?
On each occurrence, I'd say it's somewhere between opening up the tinfoil/lotus leaves only to find that the sticky rice has been dyed blue and the realization that you've let your favorite bra go through the dryer.
This doesn't seem too bad..
The resentment builds and compounds when it happens 30 times per day. Plus, my laptop has to be plugged into the wall and now relies on a mouse and keyboard to be useful. It's a desktop in a laptop's body. I'd really like to put it in a home.
Once you threatened to drop kick it, did you ever really abuse it in this way?
No, I thought about it, and it seemed like a bad idea.
Like the time you and your friends were inebriated and decided to reenact the mixed martial arts in Ong-bak Thai Warrior?
What should your readers do when your computer finally goes kaputska?
They should read other blogs. My friend's blogs are mostly listed in my links. I'd also recommend White Whine (a daily complaint made by a white person), the Sixeyes mp3 blog, Flip Flop Flying for expatriate artist and travel writing, or fourfour. I've followed fourfour for years now. It's a perennial favorite.
Why do you like these blogs?
I think that good blogs cover just a handful of topics, but covers them well. All of these blogs have a focus that mine sometimes lacks.
Do you think about changing the content of your blog?
Constantly. For one thing, I'd love to add an audio element-- maybe weekly music mixes or the occasional radio drama. I also wonder about how much I should reveal here. The posts in which I've poured out my heart and soul aren't received in a way that I can really, accurately gauge the response.
You're speaking of course of your posts on depression.
Yes, to some extent. It's not really surprising. Most people react to depression this way, even if they've had experience with it themselves. But I can almost always tell who's been depressed by their response. It's like migraines sufferers. People with migraines know the difference between a migraine and a bad headache. Those with depression know the difference between depression and a string of bad days. It's frustrating when people that suffer bad headaches claim to have a migraine, but if it helps them understand the pain I guess it's a good thing. Same goes for depression.
Is there anything that's off limits on your blog?
I will not write openly about my friends without their permission. I will not discuss why I can no longer listen to Jimi Hendrix. My humor can be on the offensive side, and I try to limit that so I'm not misconstrued. Also, I am trying very hard to discuss my professional life on a more theoretical level.
Where are you at, professionally?
I'm at a point in my career (or lack thereof) where I need some lessons in how to market myself and my services as a dramaturg better. I could also use a terminal degree in theatre. In general, I'd really like to have some health insurance.
Where do you hope to be?
I am essentially a knowledge worker in a creative field. For me, success isn't about the volume of finished products or a dollar amount. I think I'll feel most satisfied professionally when I'm comfortable with the quality of my work, and I am in a position where I feel secure enough to branch out and help others operate at the top of their game. Something I'm very good at that I don't often have the opportunity to do is connecting creative people with one another. I think I have a knack for pairing people with mutually beneficial talents. Plus, it makes me feel good.
Maybe you should move to Los Angeles and become a producer...
As a Bay Area native I am naturally skeptical of all things Los Angeles.
You're from the Bay Area but people always think you're from somewhere else. What's their damage?
I dunno. When I lived on the east coast, people always thought I was from Vermont because I have a sort of hippy element that doesn't jive with the mid-Atlantic region. I found east coasters have a hard time thinking west of the Mississippi. Native Portlanders know that I'm not one of them, but they are few and far between these days. Portlanders in general tend to assume that I'm an anonymous Elsewhere. Folks from the Bay Area either know where I was born and raised or don't feel the need to talk to me.
The Bay Area's a big place. What part are you from?
The south end. North of Steinbeck Country. Technically, it's the tenth largest city in the US.
Do you know the way?
Yes I do, Dionne. Just follow the Interstates until you come to something that looks like suburbia's wet dream.
How do you like living in Portland?
I think the honeymoon phase is over. I love this town, but its atmosphere makes me prone to laziness. Something also makes me feel like I'm not firmly rooted here. Even though I've lived here for years now, I drive or walk around and I don't have that sense of the uber familiar. It's also not nearly coastal enough for my tastes.
It might not be coastal, but it's at the confluence of 2 rivers! Surely this could satisfy your want for water.
A wise woman once told me, "Never get a pet turtle when what you really want is a kitten." Likewise, don't live in a river city when you really want to have zero resale value to your car because all the salt water has made it a rusty barrel of bolts.
You should write a book about the young woman and the sea.
I'd rather go tidepooling and write a book about something else.
From a personal standpoint, I'm not sure if I'm ready to write one. I always thought of myself as sensitive but not at all fragile. I'm coming to realize that I am really very delicate. Over the past year I went over the edge, I fell to pieces, and I waited for someone to pick me up again even though I see myself as a strong, independent, self-aware woman. If I wrote a book today it would have to do with this experience. It would probably ask questions that I don't have answers to yet. Like, in the light of disaster, how much of this idea of strength/independence is a ruse? It would also deal with perception vs. reality and more latent aspects of personality.
I'm not afraid of swimming in murkier waters, I just don't like to jump in and initiate things.
Speaking of initiating things, I think this post inaugural in the sense that you've used your entire name on crowcrastination...
That's not my entire name. Not according to my parents or the government. Still, that's what most people call me. First and last. As if it's one word.
If you don't mind me saying so, it's a little close to a rather dodgy element in American history.
Nah, it's totally different. My name is fun, concise, alliterative.
What would happen if your name started with a J instead of a K?
Mama Crow would never let that happen. I have a cousin Jim, but he's not on the Crow side of things. Ironically, now that cousin #4 is gone, my entire generation has a name that begins with either a J or a K. How curious.
Anyway, you seem to have a thing for crows.
Not just crows. I also like ravens, hummingbirds and peregrine falcons.
What's up next on crowcrastination?
Either a story about dropping my keys in the dumpster, or an account of why I believe the Asian Mafia is real. Maybe some wisecracks about my name. Or something else entirely. I never know what I'm going to cook up here.
One last question. If you could be a tree, what type of tree would you be?