Well, my brain has finally decided to start spitting out some thoughts. More accurately, my brain has decided that, rather than simply spitting the thoughts out, forcing me to write them all down so they're not lost forever, it will actually retain a few, and roll them around a bit, and maybe try to see where they lead. It's the part of the thought process that I call percolating. The word appeals both for the sense of filtering and of excitation. Getting ready to write always reminds me of my old coffeemaker. My thoughts seem to require some time to heat up before I get those first few drops of something coherent, building eventually into a steady stream of something strong enough to get me going.
I'd say right now, I'm done listening to the hiss of convection, and am finally getting those first few sputtering ideas. Some are new; many are reasserting themselves, continuing the slow buildup from nagging recurrence to sustained reflection.
the formation and fragmentation of identity
gender and heroism
projection and misdirection
ethical selfhood and spiritual crises
singularity and heroism vs. something about The Group (Buffy and The Scoobies)
(drip, drip, drip, sputter...)
And I'm out of steam. Time to get in some reading, then.
As a side note, I often walk while I'm percolating. I tend to zone a little while walking, so can get lost in whatever thoughts are foremost at the time; it also helps that, while walking, I'm unable to participate in many of my typical means of distracting myself. As I double checked that I'd remembered the dual senses of percolation correctly, I found that it has a usage I didn't know about, or had forgotten (the OED says it's a now rare American slang): to walk, stroll, or wander. Percolating while percolating :)