Can’t have the cream when the crop

cows-1264545…and the cream are the same.

That’s a lyric from my favorite Andrew Bird song; follow the hyperlink and go listen to it.

I know I talk about my epilepsy a lot but it’s because it’s at the forefront of my brain, always. My puny, young, broken brain.

“Measuring Cups” used to make me cry, because it’s my high school experience in song. Green Bay, WI wasn’t all bad, but Bay Port High School sure was. Not only was I consumed by many, many crippling insecurities, my brain also went haywire in the middle of my time there.

The day I had my first seizure, I wrote on my Facebook (like the little idiot that I was– and maybe still am), “I just had a seizure,” then promptly cut myself off from social media, so when I went to school a few days later, people were concerned. That was nice, you know? But everyone expected me to be fine a week later, and I wasn’t. It made my friends angry because I wasn’t all happy anymore.

Then I took some bad medications. Some made me sleepy, some made my hair fall out, and some made me have more seizures.

And I left high school without remembering much of my junior and senior years. I think I liked some of it– I wouldn’t really know.

My inspiration comes from things like this, and it shouldn’t. Art shouldn’t make me think of…me, should it? Is this evidence of poor writing or narcissism? It’s a sort of pandering, but I guess that’s music for you. Music caters to the personhood of the listener, you know? Maybe that’s its job. Art– and by this I mostly mean good writing (god, I wish “good writing” was something I could do)– should be able to stand on its own, context-less. That’s the beauty of poetry. It’s often a stylized snapshot of our stupid world and I love that. I just wish I could write it.

Maybe one day. I don’t know.

— Katie

And it will fade always

sleepy-hollow-cemeteryI’m back in school. Sort of. I knew I was always going to go for my Master’s so when the opportunity came up, I grabbed it with both hands and I refuse to let go. I’ve yet to get in, but I’m taking a class. Specifically, literary theory. I’m one of the weird ones who enjoys it. I think it might have something to do with my love of science.

I hope to, in my studies, continue with my interdisciplinary…ness. When writing, thinking, researching, keeping an open mind is crucial to worthwhile ideas. There is just so much to learn and literature is one of those things that oozes, filling the nooks and crannies of other disciplines. It’s so necessary to let it do that, ’cause there’s a story about most everything! But our authors, man…they are the ones who really fascinate me, because,

Uninteresting authors don’t really exist. Not good ones, anyway.

I mean, there are boring conversations and uninteresting jobs and subpar existences but all of these are brought about by choices– the best choices that those individuals could make in those moments. Forgive them. Their creativity must have– and likely did– come from somewhere entirely unique.

Everyone is as multifaceted as the next person, and that’s something that isn’t often talked about in literature. I’d like there to be more of it. I’d like to know which author was a dentist for his day job or what Dickinson read in her spare time (she was a bit of an amateur scholar, if you can believe it). I want to know which flowers bloomed when Thoreau was writing Walden and I want to visit Sleepy Hollow Cemetery again so I can laugh at Emerson’s stupid rose quartz headstone.

There’s science and sociology and history in these lives– not just the writing. It’s a bit faded, yeah, and a lot less precise to study, but that’s the beauty of it. We can resurrect these people’s loves, hopes, dreams…but I do often question the ethics of reading diary entries, so maybe I’ll give that a pass.

Anyway– the title has nothing to do with this diary entry. You may read it in good conscience; I know (and approve of) where it lives.

– Katie

Let’s listen!

A musical artist can be compelling for a lot of reasons. Maybe they’re a great lyricist or a genius with melody. Maybe they’re extremely attractive or just have a presence. I tend to gravitate toward those artists who have voices that sidle up alongside the listener and envelop them in this weird, musical embrace. It’s not exactly sexy most of the time (I mean, sometimes it is- we’ll get there), but there are a lot of artists who just sound…it’s difficult to explain.

Why I listen to the dead sexy ones is more easily identified- because it’s just fun.

I’m going to give you a list of both: the velvety voices that wiggle their way into your psyche, and the voices that’re anything but wholesome. Here we go!

The former:

1. Cigarettes and Sex, “Affection”

2. Pentatonix (but I want you to listen to Mitch- the tenor), “Just For Now” (Mitch Grassi, my favorite singer of all time.)

3. FYFE, “Better Man (Feat. Peter Gregson & Iskra String Quartet)”

4. BUOY, “Clouds & Rain”

5. EXES, “twentythousand”

6. INGLISH, “Russian Roulette”

A few of those are electro, so if you hate that, 4-6 aren’t really for ya.

The latter:

1. Feist, “Now At Last”

2. Kopecky Family Band, “Animal” (Probably my favorite on the list.)

3. Marian Hill, “Lips”

4. Sky Ferreira, “Red Lips”

5. ALXXA, “Fire”

Yup. Alright, it’s time to go on a music binge. If you’d excuse me…

Pseudonyms and self-publishing

woman-865111_1920What if I wrote under a pseudonym? I know that is a pretty normal question for any writer, but it finally felt like an option for me a few days ago, when I was re-reading some of my old material. I was upset and disgusted and wished my name wasn’t plastered all over it. How BEAUTIFUL would it be to be anonymous? I wouldn’t have to worry about being embarrassed by my work and could write without guilt. There would be no reason for me to be overly artistic or any need for perfection (I can agonize over word choice like nobody’s business). I could write silly dramas, bad sci-fi or terrible romances- I could churn out bodice-rippers by the boatload!

And with publishing the way it is at the moment, I could publish the damn things on Amazon without any problem. I’d Photoshop my own cover art and format it in InDesign. I can do that; I have those skills, so that’s taken care of. I’d be a self-publishing machine.

My name would be something like Lottie, or Dessa, or something that reminds you of Gone With the Wind.

I’d write about a suave billionaire who becomes obsessed with a young proofreader (HA!) or maybe an alien infection that turned brains into jelly except when it didn’t, and when it didn’t, that person became an absolute genius. Just…stupid stuff.

The thing is, even absolute crap takes a long time to write. I can’t sit down and churn out one hundred pages of cookie cutter smut in a half hour, though I think that’d be hilarious and very fun. Nah, I’d have to commit actual time and effort into absolute….well, it wouldn’t be good. It’d be funny, yeah. But not good.

Maybe I could try releasing chapters on a blog or something. If you want to read that, let me know. If I had a reader, I’d be be motivated to write it.

I’ll think about it. If I did take a new name, I’m thinking I’d want to go for something stupid, like Charlotte Cunningham or something ordinary, like Kathleen Williams. But for now, I’m just Katelyn Brunner.

The newest obsession.

radio-964684_1280I have long thought voyeurism is in the nature of most humans. We watch daily vlogs, eagerly follow “found footage” TV shows and YouTube series, and when we read, we sidle up to what is, essentially, another (fictional) consciousness.

My latest voyeuristic obsession is podcasts. They give me the feeling that I’m eavesdropping on extremely cool, smart people. Of course, podcasts are really just radio coming back in a slightly different format, so I don’t feel too bad about my intrusion. In fact, I love it, because I learn so much from these conversations. There’s something for everyone out there, though- it doesn’t have to be educational (I’m just a nerd).

And the best part of podcasts: you can listen to them anywhere, and at your own pace.

The recommendations (of course):

  1. My Dad Wrote A Porno: This is the funniest one, I think. This man’s father wrote erotic fiction and he reads it aloud to his two friends, chapter by chapter, in half-hour bits. Belinda Blinks is now my favorite erotic novel (not that it had much competition).
  2. Dear Hank and John: I’ve already discussed the Green brothers in a previous post, but in this podcast, you really get to know them. It’s a podcast, they say, “about death, AFC Wimbeldon, and Mars.”
  3. This is a YT show: Just Between Us. Two girls, one bisexual and one straight, live together and produce hilarious (if slightly off-kilter) sketch comedy. I’ve included it in the podcast post…just because.
  4. TEDTalks: Self-explanatory.
  5. Invisibilia: An NPR podcast that explores human behavior and the invisible forces that guide us. Plus….the host’s voice is incredibly soothing.
  6. Hidden Brain: Another NPR podcast about psychology and the world. It uses storytelling and science to keep the listener interested, and BOY is it interesting.

Ok, it’s time to head to work. Go listen to something; I know I will.

I’m a disappointment.

glacier-530050_1920I can’t even be trusted with the upkeep a blog- what good am I? The EC has died. Well, not officially, but it’s not likely that I’ll revive it.

I am disappointed in myself. But, you know, I’m nowhere near epileptic enough to pull it off, anyway. I’m one of the lucky ones and I’ve come to accept that. Not all of us can be noble and martyr-y and stuff. Frankly, I find the lack of drama in my life (medical or otherwise), rather comforting.

The news:

  1. I got my job. No more coffee-making for me.
  2. I’ll be going to Iceland in November. Will buy tickets next week.
  3. I’ll be moving out of my scary, drippy, weird apartment.
  4. I’ll be going off Depakote if everything goes to plan.
  5. Still no love life but I am very content on the plateau.

If you’re at all interested in me as a person, that’s honestly all you’ve got to know at the moment.

I feel bad; this blog is so freaking selfish, you know? I go on and on about myself, shouting into the online void, expecting a response. A positive one, even! How arrogant. It’s gross. It’s like long-form, pretentious Twitter updates.

I’m the worst.

The Epileptic’s Cafe

cup-of-coffee-1280537_1920I’ve begun a blog about being a young epileptic. I’ll give tips, hard-won wisdom, and share stories (of my own and of others) about the disorder. I’ll talk about a variety of subjects- from international travel to employment. I’m excited about this, and I urge you to go check out the site. There’s only one post up at the moment, but at least it looks good.

I have known for a long time now that I need to give back in some way. Hopefully, this will give me an avenue to do that.