The trials and travails of transitioning

So it’s been a weird few days. Since I’m starting hormones soon, I’m trying to quit smoking because estrogen greatly increases the risk of stroke, which is increased even more if you smoke. (This is why it’s not a good idea to smoke on birth control pills.) I am generally a pretty heavy smoker; usually I smoke at least a pack a day, and quite often it’s even more than that. However, I’m down to fewer than 10 cigarettes a day and the cravings are starting to get more manageable. I’ve figured something out: when I feel a craving, if I just write (journal, short story, novel, anything) for a minimum of fifteen minutes the craving passes. It’s great that I’ve discovered this trick, because not only am I smoking less, but I am getting more work done than usual. Making all sorts of progress.

I decided to go through with the name change, but the family is not honoring the request. Oh well, they’ll come around.

Also, last time I went out for a cigarette (about two and a half hours ago) a group of little seven- or eight-year-old boys asked me if I was a boy or a girl. I told them neither and tried to explain the concept of transgender to them, which may or may not have worked. I figure that if I have trouble passing I can always use my visibility to raise awareness for trans issues.

I did, however, have a cold encounter at a gas station yesterday. I went to get a soda and for what I assume was my androgyny the cashier tried to refuse to help me. He didn’t say anything; he just acted like I wasn’t there. I just stood there and refused to go away until finally a line formed behind me and he was forced to help me. He did so in the fewest words possible and without ever making eye contact. What a winner. Seriously, though, that’s been about the worst encounter so far; most people don’t seem to even notice me, so either I’m doing an okay job of passing, or I’m failing miserably, or people really don’t care that much. I’m not sure how to find out which is the case; I’ll have to get to the bottom of this.

The ups and downs of novelizing

I’m working on my first novel right now and it’s coming along okay. I’ve published a few short stories and a poem in small literary magazines so I know I’ve got what it takes to write the short stuff, but novelizing is a fair bit more difficult. Mainly it’s coming up with a good beginning. I’ve rewritten the first chapter about six times now, and just a few days ago I scrapped it and integrated the few important bits into the second chapter, which is now tentatively serving as the first because my friend told me that he thought that was were the story really began. I will perhaps post it on my deviantArt site to see what others think, but really I don’t like sharing my work in progress unless it’s with other writers who are critiquing it and giving me constructive feedback.

In case you’re wondering, my novel is a surrealist failed love story. It’s about a struggling musician in his mid-twenties who meets and falls in love with a trans woman, but their relationship can never really get off the ground. The surrealist part comes in when he gains the ability to manipulate/control people with his music, but he can’t use that power on people he really cares about. I generally call my work “American fantastique” because that’s what I’m mostly inspired by. Most of my work is also heavy on religious or mythological themes (like much fantastique).

The working title of this project is ORPHEUS, so I’ll use that as the tag for posts relating to this novel in the future if you’re at all interested in keeping up with how it’s coming along.

In the beginning…

BLOGGING YAY! Dearest readers (if there are any only five minutes after starting a blog). Welcome! I decided that since I like to write and I journal pretty muc24/7, why not write on the Internet-machines? Did you know that nearly a third of bloggers use their blogs to advance political agendas? True, true. I may do that. Although I am pretty weird politically. Anyway, keeping this short and simple until I can figure out how to work this crazy machine: I ‘m a 25-year-old transgender writer (read: unemployed/life-long student) and I decided to start a blog because starting next Wednesday (the 15th of December) I will begin living full-time as a woman, so I thought I’d document it. Yay! Also, I recently started a local skeptics’ club in my area, so there may be a lot of railing against pseudoscience and crazy mystical beliefs. (Did you know that believers in the paranormal are even more susceptible to the conjunction fallacy than the general population?)  Also, I am a geek of the comic book and video game variety, so I may talk some about that. Finally, I may blog about whatever the fuck I’m writing currently (I am working on my first novel and have published a few short stories and one poem). Hopefully this won’t be like my venture into the twit-o-sphere a few months ago, which lasted all of two weeks. (I’ve never understood the whole social media thing.)

Also, after writing this first post, I have decided that WordPress is way laggified. Sad, sad. Perhaps it’s not uber-compatible with Firefox? There’s a delay when I try to reposition my cursor. This may get annoying…