Super Burger-y Bean Burgers

As you  may remember, sometimes, I cook! And right now, I’m pretty obsessed with these awesome bean burgers…


Call for notes!

Do you write notes to yourself? Do you use post-its (of printed or electronic variety)? Do you make epic to-do lists? Do you keep track of all the shit you’re supposed to remember on the back of your hand?

From little blurbs to long lists, I want to see your notes!

I’m in the middle of working on a long-form fictional work in which the central character makes a lot of extensive personal notations, and I’d like to generate some ideas about how he does that, eventually developing a style for him. This is also a very visually-oriented work–in its current iteration, the work will consist primarily of these notes, handwritten onto pages.

So! If you are comfortable sharing your notes with me, I would love it if you mailed them to me, or scanned them and sent them over e-mail. Pictures of notes will also work. No one else will be looking at your notes but me, and none of your identifying information will be shared–this is strictly for research and none of this material will be reproduced in the work.

You can contact me at chelsea[dot]fiddyment[at]gmail[dot]com with scanned notes, questions, requests for other contact info, fan mail, smiley faces, etc. I look forward to hearing from you!

Big plans, changes underway

Obligatory statement that I have been terrible at updates here. Excuse for such behavior: school. Declaration that things will change very shortly…

On bullying

I’m posting the following conversation because I felt that it was important. There have only been very, very minor edits for typos and some personal references. Warning: potentially NSFW due to a small amount of swearing.


I’m writing this as I roll through the Pacific Northwest via Amtrak…


My visit to the PNW is officially underway. I’ll have a more substantial update soon; for now, check my Twitter to see what’s going on as it happens.

Hello there, 2012

Delicious consumables...and this is just the food

Our NYE party has come and gone, along with its delicious spread of spreads: pear-blue cheese chutney, mushroom-walnut pâté, spicy hummus, homemade crostinis and cinnamon sugar tortilla crisps, various cheeses, bacon-wrapped shrimp, cranberry-orange relish, bhel puri…many of these recipes I will present in the near future for your own experimentation.

As much as New Year’s lists can seem trite, I think it’s important to document where I’m at as an arranger of words, as well as where I am in my life at large, in a space that allows me to revisit my desires and goals and that enables others to encourage me to keep my word. So, without further adieu:

Things to Do in 2012

I. The Professional

  • Set up and maintain a solid, unchanging three-day a week writing schedule, during which I write for three-four hours at a time.
  • Maintain this blog regularly: Adventure Day recaps/status updates at least once every two weeks, more recipes (with photos and perhaps video)
  • Maintain Drawing Coffee regularly: update/cycle through my writing portfolio online, columns/essays on the state of writing and writing-, narrative-, and publication-related issues at least once every two weeks
  • Develop coding skills.
  • Finish all of the work I’ve begun revising and new work I’ve started over last fall and the coming spring.
  • Make some decisions about my thesis by September.
  • Secure at least one internship.
  • Develop bookmaking and binding skills.
  • Write personally about my writing process and my critical self once a week.
  • Submit my work to ten publications.
  • Finish reading one book a month.
  • Perform at three readings.

II. The Personal

  • Set up and maintain a workout schedule three times a week by the first week of February.
  • Take one day a week for myself–to write personally, to get things done around the apartment, to make food for the coming week, do laundry, clean my work space, play video games, etc.
  • Write and adhere to a personal monthly budget.
  • Volunteer.
  • Find/start a band, and play at least one show.
  • Plan at least one road trip.
  • Plan a writer’s retreat+trip for January next year.
  • Acquire enough poster frames for all of my artwork.
  • Go to at least one Cards game.

The beginning of the year has to come to be a very significant time to me. At the beginning of 2010, I felt like everything in my life had dropped away and left me suspended, free-floating in empty space, and I couldn’t tell if I was flying or falling. Graduating from college felt like I had run a marathon and vaulted over a single last hurdle off the edge of a cliff with no base, no ground to crash to. I forced a minimal amount of writing, and mostly stopped altogether. 2011 started with a bang and a bruise, celebrating in Chicago for the first time with tons of significant people who, though they may not know it, help keep me driven even though they are typically far away. And I was, of course, playing the waiting game in many ways, including hearing about grad school admissions. As compared to the previous year, however, I believed in the direction I had come to, and was cutting through the air around me despite not having hit the ground yet.

On the front page of my datebook for 2011, I wrote an important note to myself to be read every time I opened it up–“Devote this year to love.” Over the course of the year, my understanding of love developed in incredible ways. Love–big love, capital-L Love, not just the kind you say to your family or your SO, but the way you feel about life and what’s in it and all the people and objects and places you will never know–is why I write, is one of the things at the center of me that makes me the person that I am. Life is too short not to genuinely extend yourself, the best part of yourself, to as many entities in as many ways as you can and to try to see them for what they are and what they can be, to try to understand them in the way they understand themselves and to be a force of exploration and curiosity and growth and passion in their existence, if only for a brief instant.

More than any other goals for 2012, I plan to devote this year to love. My feet brush the ground beneath with every step.

Merry something to all, and to all, a good something

  • Semester’s finished at last. I have a few last-minute things to iron out with scheduling, but everything seems to be shaping up rather nicely.
  • Plans: Dec. 22-29 in TX (currently underway); fancy NYE cocktail party in Chicago; Jan. 5-9 in Seattle; Jan. 9-16 in Portland; Jan. 19/20-23/24 in Springfield. I’m a hot commodity. Get me while you can.
  • Post-op recovery is going well–a few more weeks and I should be back in action, hitting the gym.
  • Expect the requisite NY2k12 goal list to start in the next few days, to be updated as we get closer to NYE.
  • Powering through Storm of Swords. These books are somehow far more ominous when you already know what’s going to happen, uuuugh
  • My substitute for this year’s Christmas ham: vegetable curry!

Happy holidays from a grumpy snowflake and a screech owl

Adventure Thursday!: Logan Hardware

On today’s edition of Adventure Thursday!, my esteemed colleague Cory and I set off in search of a magical land of 8-bit graphics and catchy booping tunes. And boy, did we find it…

The Chezmerelda Show

Most of the way through the final full week of classes, and I’ve turned in all my final projects for the semester. Home stretch home stretch home streeeeeeetch

Last week’s adventure to Dill Pickle went very well–a bit pricey for some, I’m sure, but worth it for the quality of goods obtained. I’d been looking for some good bulk granola and it turns out that they actually carry some of the most delicious granola on the planet, made here in ye olde Wicker Park at Milk & Honey Cafe (a place I have walked into, but have yet to actually eat/drink at–it always seemed to be a zoo when I passed by in the summer, but most restaurants on Division are). I did have to wander a little to find it–there’s no large signs outside, just one painted on the door, which I didn’t see until I parked a block or so away and walked along the side of the street I knew it was on.

Getting ready to go on my first documented ADVENTURE THURSDAY! today, so this post has gotta stay short. Commencing C-Fidd signature bullet-point-style update:

  • Going to my first ugly sweater holiday party, gotta find a suitably ugly masterpiece on the cheap
  • Still reading Storm of Swords, hoping to finish up my GRRM re-reading marathon over the break and get my Dance on
  • Watched The Fall for the first time last night, wowee wow wow
  • Got some srs bootz, also this scarf is super great
  • Leaving for DFW on Dec. 22
  • Got my new phone in the mail last weekend–if you haven’t already, please contact me using one of the previously detailed methods and let me know who you are so I can re-enter your contact information. My new phone has a stupid amount of features, so expect my inane twats to get a lot more frequent.
  • You guys sleeping is going to be so great, like the best ever
  • Expect to see a “Goals for 2012” post–more to for real hold myself accountable than anything else, but I’d appreciate everyone else holding me accountable, too. It’s helpful.
  • Post-op recuperation seems to be going pretty well–no more narcotics and less ibuprofen, although I am definitely achy after sitting for long periods of time (class and work) and after extensive amounts of walking around. Spending a lot of time on the couch under a blanket or using my entire bed as a work surface while I prop up and pull my heating blanket over my legs
  • If I know you IRL and you’re going to be in Chicagoland for NYE, you should probably let me know



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