Monthly Archives: August 2012

Farted Around With My Weekend for a Cause!

Today, yesterday, and the day before, I’ve been filled with some serious self doubts! Am I a good enough writer? Do I have the chops to write? What the hell am I doing thinking I can actually write a full-length novel, when I can’t seem to get 3 damned paragraphs written correctly? What the hell’s wrong with me?

A small, tiny bit of criticism, and off I go running with my tail between my legs, and fill myself, my writing life, with self doubt. Hell, I knew something was wrong with the text, and I asked one soul to review a few paragraphs, and my world went plummeting. I plummeted. I began to question everything I’ve ever written, everything I thought I could do. I began to doubt… myself! So I took the weekend off from writing to lick my wounds, wallow in self-pity, and generally had a miserable time with myself. And just for the record, that person didn’t intentionally make me feel bad about what they had read. I asked for their true opinion. You hear that? I asked for it!

Now the question to myself is, “Do I have the chops to write, or not?” Am I up to the task? Am I able to do this thing I call writing? Can I bring my books to fruition? And, if I can’t endure a 3-paragraph criticism, how am I going to feel when I get rejections from the publishers and agents about my entire book! And I know, after reading many, many articles about it, that I will! I’m no fool. I don’t live in a faerie castle where I believe all things are magical, and all things work out the first time, and…, well, I do, but that’s a story about me personally, where I believe everything is inherently good and positive, well, in my heart. But, I do live in the real world too, and I know, in the real world, people are cruel, and harsh, and self-absorbed, and manipulative, and brutal, and damn, I think I’m not seeing people very positively today, am I? You see what I’m saying though, yes? Life is tough, people can be tougher, and if I’m such a friggin’ softie, do I have any business writing in the first place?

My answer to that is, “Yes!” Yeah true, I’m too soft, and I need to grow a tougher shell to be in this business, but I’ve done a lot of incredible things in my life that I was petrified to do, yet I did them! Maybe not as well as somebody else did them, but I did the things I dreamed about doing. Like when I was singing professionally as a ‘lounge lizard’! No, I’m not being a butt towards singers who travel a circuit and sing in clubs every weekend. That’s just what we singers referred to other singers as, who did the same thing as us! And for the record, we called ourselves that too! The truth of it is, I wasn’t a fantastic singer, but it was a dream of mine to do it, and so I did. And, I’m an artist too! My work isn’t top notch stuff. I didn’t go to a school of fine art to learn technique, but I love my work, and I’ve sold my work at art shows, which meant that other people loved my work too. That wasn’t easy, and I was scared to put myself out there like that, but I did it. And, I’ve always dreamed of publishing my novels as well, and so I will! Maybe I’m not the next J.K. Rowling, and I’m okay with that. There can only be one, her, right? But then, there’s only one of me too! And I think I’m pretty damned good, as a person, and, as a writer!

I’m happy to see the back of this past weekend, because I questioned myself over this very loooong weekend, why do I write? Why do I feel compelled to write? And here’s the conclusion that I came to after some major soul-searching. Actually, it was more like, I swam to the depths of my soul, really digging around in there, searching the hidden corners for the truth, and then digesting what I’d found! The first answer is, I have a lot to say. But that’s not really the truth in its entirety. I mean, it is the truth, as in, I always have a lot of things to say, (and, if you’ve read my older blogs you’ll remember that I was lovingly(?) called ‘Motormouth’ by my family,) but who doesn’t have a lot to say? And that really doesn’t capture the essence of what I found while searching the deepest regions of myself. No. The deeper truth is, I like making people feel! I really love when someone reads one of my stories that they laugh, or cry, or, are scared shitless and can’t sleep because they’re afraid some creepy little hand is going to crawl out from under their bed, up their blankie, and grab their arm in the dark! I love freaking people out, or shocking them into a fit of laughter, or that they blush when they’ve read something of mine that makes them feel a little hot and bothered in their underoos!

To me, writing is all about making people feel emotion about something! I don’t think there’s a better reward for writing than that. That’s the bottom line in my humbled opinion. I write so that other people, anyone, can feel something they weren’t expecting, or weren’t looking forward to feeling, or were shocked to feel, or maybe, didn’t want to feel, but guess what, they felt an emotion about something I’ve written! Not Rowling, but me! My writing. My words. My thoughts and stories. Mine. So what if I received a criticism on 3-paragraphs I wrote and knew weren’t effective to begin with. The reader got the gist of what I wanted to say, but it wasn’t as effective as I wanted it to be, and I asked for the criticism, I expected it because I already knew the paragraphs didn’t work. Does that mean that the rest of the story that I’ve written is shit? No. It certainly doesn’t. It simply means that those 3-paragraphs were shit, and now that I know what I knew to begin with, I can go back and re-work those paragraphs so that they will convey what I want to convey, and, be effective in their telling the story that I want to tell! It’s as simple as that! I’m no J.K. Rowling, or any other writer, and to be honest, I don’t want to be them. Really, you ask? Really, I answer. I just want to write my stories, from the nightmares that I’ve had, and tell it to my readers in the best way I can so that no one will be able to sleep afterwards because they were too scared to sleep! So, the other writers can be who they are, and do what they do, and I’m going to go and fix those three paragraphs so that they are effective, and I want you to know, I’m happy to be…I’m Just Me!

Oof! It’s So One Of Those Days . . .

And so, today has not been such a fantastic day for me! I woke with the realization, that to some people, I’m just not that worthy! Which is fine, but which also prompted me to pen a Poem:

SILENCE

Your silence slices my heart, like a razor blade slashes the flesh, and I bleed as though I were cut and shown bare for all to see, and you laugh at my foolishness.
Unimportant to your needs, used, and discarded. Self aggrandizement, your importance. Your quest.
So darkly do I think of you now, hideous in your arrogance. You force me to feel what I dare not admit, your vulgar sanctuary, empty.
Your silence, the quiet, speaks to my innermost thoughts where you dwelt within me, the beast of rejection, agony, and injured pride, defeat.
You cast your eye about, but I? Not within your frame. How could you ignore what I so boldly laid out for you to eat?
Even the least infatuated would take the time to look. Worthwhile? Perhaps, and then again, it seems, not so.
Time has been wasted, on what? For whom? Why would I spend the precious little seconds I have to look any longer?
A waste the curiosity has been, and the lost time never recouped. And so, I move on. To actions of more importance than you.
I move onto acceptance of the person I am, of what I do, where appreciation does not come wrapped in a perfect package.
Where validity of word and prose are vindicated, and success, a self-fulfilled act of justice, deserved, for having survived.
I have been moved, internally, from the selfishness, and willful act of ignorance. Moved on from you and your dreadful silence.
And into a place where silence is not the rule, but the exception. Where silence is chosen, not as rejection or slight, but as reflection.

Now, I’ll be the first to admit that poetry, and the penning of, is not my strongest writing forte, but I wrote it, and it’s mine, and that’s all I can say about it. Other than this..

The poem was inspired by someone who will remain nameless. But, in writing it, it released me from a burden I was personally carrying, and I needed to, purge, if you will, my feelings over it. I realized that I was wasting a lot of valuable time and energy. Time and energy that is, that I don’t really have to devote to such frivolous activities, and so, I’m over it! I’m moving on, so I can concentrate on my writing, which, may I add, will not only enrich my life, but the lives of those who surround me. I’m a much happier person when I’m in the zone and writing, rather than daydreaming about some unobtainable goal that was festering inside of me, and my family is much happier when I’m in the zone too! Make sense? Probably not, hm? It does to me, so…

The thinking of that person was an escape for me during a very serious time of transition in my life, and now, I no longer need a diversion of my senses, or preoccupation. I’m here, writing, and for the first time in a very long time of my life, focused back on the things that bring me the most joy, family, friends, and writing! And of course, my lil’ Westie, Angel!

So, I suppose the moral of today’s post is, don’t waste your time on things that bring no joy or completeness to your life, and instead, focus your energies on those things which enhance you, your life, and your well-being! So, nameless So-and-So, I’ve spent time and energy on you, and today I’ve decided, enough is enough! I may not mean anything to you, and that’s okay, I’m going to keep my harmony and balance and say, just because I don’t mean anything to you, I mean a great deal to myself, because in the end, I’m Just Me…

Hello Again!

So, as you can see, I haven’t blogged in a good and long while, and I’m going to rectify that now! The other day, I posted a message to a new friend I had made through Twitter, and, in the message, I had shared with him that I’ve been seriously putting pen to paper for the past seven years. True? Yes. But it occurred to me that, that particular statement is not the case exactly. In thinking about my comment to him, and in reading the older blogs that I’ve written, I came to realize that I’ve been writing for my entire life! Really? You ask. My answer, “Um, yah.”

If you’ve read my older blogs, (and I hope that you have. You can read my older posts in the Archives section,) then you know a little something about me already, and what I’ve survived as a child. And if you haven’t, by all means, feel free to do so! If you have read them, I’m certain the older posts may make me seem a bit, em, how shall I say? Off? Well, I’m not. Yes, I may be different, a bit odd, loopy, kooky, weird, scary, or, maybe even to some, eccentric, but in my opinion, and as you can see from my Blog title, “I’m Just Me!” That’s it. Nothing more, and nothing less. I’m Just Me….

Those older posts were my way of sharing, not only what I’d been through, but also maybe to offer a safety net for others who are enduring, or have endured the same thing. I’m not saying that it was the most logical way of dealing with the situation, but what is logic to a child? Really. After I re-read my older blogs, I came to realize I was a writer even as a child. I painted a fantastical picture of this Sanctuary that was created, I say, for me, others may say, created myself, but created none the less. Of course, I didn’t realize then that I was writing, but I’m supposing I was practicing being a writer, though it wasn’t intentional at all, even back then! I said before, in an older blog, that I believe ‘everything happens for a reason. Maybe the reason I went through all that I have, was because it was meant to be, I was meant to be, a Writer. Would I be able to create a picture with words if I hadn’t created the picture of my sanctuary as a child? Would I be able to describe in detail, what I see in my head if that hadn’t happened to me? Maybe. But then again, maybe not. I’m a, find the positive, the silver lining in every dark cloud kind of gal! And in truth, I wouldn’t want to be any other way. So, okay, I’ll say it, If my older posts make me sound crazy, that’s okay. I know you don’t mean it, and I can forgive your thinking that of me, but in this case, my feeling is, walk a mile in my shoes, and then say that!

I suppose what I’m saying is it comes down to this. If it wouldn’t have been for all of that, I wouldn’t be all of me, and all of me means, I am a Writer! After all, I’ve literally been writing the whole of my lifetime. Am I published? No. Do I yet have a finished manuscript? No, not quite. And does any of that mean I’m not a Writer? No. The truth is, my earlier blogs are true. Every word. Even the part about hearing God’s voice. No, I’m not delusional, I can assure you. But, I’m going to save that for another day, as it really doesn’t have a bearing here; well, I guess it does if you believe we are created by God to be who we are, but a lot of people don’t believe in the power of a Higher Being, and that’s okay too. If that’s your belief, then I won’t judge you, if you don’t judge me. Okay?

So let me tell you what’s going on with me these days…
I’m writing. Full-time, nose to the grindstone, chock-full of great ideas, and all that other stuff you hear people say. You want to hear something a little strange? Ha, you laugh! As if you haven’t already? Most of my manuscripts have come from nightmares I’ve had. I dream very vivid dreams! Is that the ‘curse’, if you will, of a Writer? Perhaps. Though I can’t say for sure. Only thing I am certain of is, every manuscript or story line that I’ve ever written, except for one, has come from a detailed and vivid nightmare! And please don’t worry for my future. I have nightmares all the time! Maybe it’s residue from my childhood. I don’t really know, but, what’s that old saying? ‘If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it’? I’m okay with it, and you ought to be too!

One of the novels I’m working on, the one that isn’t from a nightmare, well, it is, but it was a living nightmare, and I mean that literally, as I’ve lived the whole novel through personal experience, that is to say, it’s a humorous memoir. See there again, silver lining! I turned the negative into something positive. Anyway, that novel is three chapters shy of being completely written, and then of course, it needs a rewrite or two, but it’s almost at the finish line! The only problem with that is that I’ve moved on from that scene with a major personal life change, and I no longer have the impetus, or rather, the main character to glean from anymore, so I need to figure out how to bring that novel to a resolution, and yet keep the humor present, even though that is now in my past. I’ll figure it out when the time is right for it to move forward.

But in the meantime, I’m not standing still. I’m also working on my newest novel, and one that I want to be my debut novel! It’s a completely different genre.. horror, and one that I had a nightmare about, created a storyline for, and am attacking with gusto! I love, love, love my characters, I love where the story is heading, and I especially love that it’ll be a series novel! And then, I have various story outlines and character profiles for at least ten other books, and yes, all from nightmares. And they’re really good and juicy stories too! Did I mention that I love having nightmares! That sounds odd, doesn’t it? But, without them, would I be able to create? Hm. Not sure about that one. There’s something to be said for the subconscious isn’t there? I think so anyway. And what I really dig, is that, from a dream, I can create something that doesn’t exist yet.. a really CrEePy book from one of MY nightmares! Who else could write that but me?

I deal with the issue of which story to begin writing in my own little way. And that is, I picture each story outline as a magnificent, elongated, and quite colorful feather-quill pen in a decorously Baroque-style bronzed cup. Whichever quill sticks up the highest, is the story I write next. Isn’t that weird? I wonder how other Writers decide on which story to write next? I’d be curious to know! And as I write this blog to you my dear reader, I realize I’ve dallied enough here for the day, as I have a gorgeous Kelly Green quill pen standing tall at the moment, and one that I must pick up! And so, I must be off to writing my newest debut novel! Thanks so much for reading my prose, and I hope that you’ll stop back for more… And, in the meantime, you keep being you, and I promise I’ll be… I’m Just Me.