Experience for Life = Material for which to Write

20 05 2015

I promised myself that I would use my May break to write up a storm and I’ve discovered that this is nowhere near the truth. I’ve barely touched my writings. I wake up and throw myself into the day. My day is long and tiring, yet filled with awesome things. And by the end of the day I can do nothing but collapse in my bed and sleep till it’s time to rock and roll tomorrow.

My professors stress that writing is important but so is actually going out there and living life. You have to have material and experience to draw from to have truly deep and enriched writing. As a cliche example: how can you write a captivating piece about a sunset if you’ve never seen one?

So I refuse to be disappointed in myself. The work I am doing is awesome, and important, and I’m learning so many things. So far during May break I’ve met new friends, grown closer with old friends, have helped move a few people into their new living arrangements (my station wagon is like the wardrobe to Narnia, you can fit more into it than you can ever imagine), I’ve gone on a kick butt camping trip with my poetry family, and I’ve actually gotten to draw some.

So here’s a glimpse of some of what I’ve done this summer.

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Me and some of the poetry gang

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Torching some metal for a small pour

Torching some metal for a small pour

More metal working

More metal working

The final product, bronze doorknobs

The final product, bronze doorknobs

Well there you have it! until next time,

Cheers!

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Spending Money to Make Money… Eventually, Hopefully

19 08 2014

Welp, I’m $100 (about 75 Euro for my international readers) lighter. I just forked out some dolla billz to become a part of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators or SCBWI for those who know. My professor has been urging me to join for quite some time and I just now managed to scrap together enough play money to join. Hopefully this will help launch me into my publishing career. I have a least a half dozen children’s books written and awaiting illustration (some I will illustrate myself and some I’m ok with other’s working on.) And at least another 2 dozen bouncing around in my head waiting to be written. My newest story involves Slue-foot Sue and it’s turning out to be quite quirky and awesome. Anyway, they gave me this spiffy little badge for spending my money. So here we go, it’s official.

Member badges

 

 





“I Cannot Tell a Lie…

24 06 2014

…I did it with my little hatchet.”

Those were the words supposedly spoken by our illustrious first president, George Washington (if you didn’t know), when he was asked about a felled cherry tree. And I am here to tell you that’s a load of bologna.

Firstly, no one chops down a tree of any size, for fun, with a hatchet. I should know. I recently felled a dogwood of about 10in in diameter, with a full sized ax.

It was fun for about the first two seconds.

Secondly, of course good old George cannot tell a lie, probably because he was caught red handed with a horizontal cherry tree and an ax (obviously not a hatchet) in his hand. To lie would have been stupid.

I think George and I ran into the same problem, we only had our mind on taking down the tree and didn’t think of what to do with it afterward. He was probably mulling it over when he got caught. So since he told the truth I’m sure Poppa Washington helped him clean up the aftermath. I on the other hand had no such help. I was stuck with a 20ft dogwood and no idea what to do with it.

Now before you go all save the trees on me, let me explain that this tree was mostly dead and in danger of toppling someone in the noggin at some random time in the near future (I don’t know about you but I don’t want “done in by wayward tree” as my epitaph).  So it was coming down at one point or another.

I would have rather used a chainsaw, but the chainsaw has recently decided to take a holiday. This left me with trusty ol ax. I’d say all in all it took me 20 minutes of all out chopping to bring down the tree. That’s including the short break I took to recover from the heat stroke that was setting in (these 90+ degree days are a little on the warm side.) I rejoiced when I saw the remaining fibers bend as the tree gently began to fall exactly where I had planned. But it didn’t take long for the joy to stop short as I realized…

Now what?

I’ve got a huge tree down in the front yard. It’s probably at least 4 times my size (I grew to be a strapping 5 feet 2 inches so that’s probably not saying much) and what’s more, there’s thunder rumbling in the backyard. At this point I would usually cut the tree into sections and cart it off to a burn pile. But usually I would have a chainsaw and there is no way I’m axing this tree into sections. That’s just not gonna happen. Then a thought occurs to me.

Remember that beaver out of the movie Lady and the Tramp? If you need a refresher here you go…

I went to the garage and grabbed the first length of rope I could find which happened to be an old fashioned jump rope. Laying nearby was one of those fake wool, slip on, seat belt covers. I grabbed it up and thread it through the rope (so it wouldn’t cut into my flesh) then looped the rope around the lowest branch of the tree and slung it across my body commando style. If you’re wondering how this works, let’s just say “It works swell!”

The tree is now laying somewhere in the woods behind the house. I’ve surrendered it to the critters. I have no intention of messing with it again. However, I should probably go fix the ruts I tore though the yard dragging it along. It wasn’t murder but I still feel the need to hide the evidence. Imma go do that now. Y’all take care.

 

Cheers!

 

 

 





Dunt Dunt Dunt: another one bites the dust

28 03 2014

Praise the Lord and Hallelujah! I just got done with another drafting of Joshua Burnam and the Killer Cereal. Hopefully it’s one of my lasts. The story is coming dangerously close to completion. This week I will be asking some of my trusted Englishly peoples take a look at it and give me some feedback. The majority of plot holes have been filled during this last run though which was probably the biggest overhaul it’s seen yet. It’s taken over a year’s worth of primping and polishing to get it to it’s present state.  I have people constantly asking me how it’s coming and my answer is always the same, still revising.

I feel like I could revise myself into the ground sometimes, but it is a necessary part of the process. I often remind myself that the difference between a writer and a published writer is revision. Someone seeking publishing should spend about 25% of their time writing the story and 75% of the time revising it. And man alive, I use to hate revision. Revision, to me, use to mean that I hadn’t done things perfectly on the first go around (and who really want’s to be told that their writing is crap?) It use to mean that I could potentially cut a paragraph that was awesome and then it would be gone forever.

But as I have become more established in my writer’s ways I have come to realize that there is a certain freedom in revision. It is admitting that: yes, I didn’t get it right on the first try but I can come back to it. And that takes a lot of pressure off preforming such monumental undertakings. Additionally, it is super productive. Knowing that you can revise later on helps you to get what’s in your head out NOW. Sure, maybe it might not work well with the story as it is but you don’t risk losing that great idea because it’s not yet perfect. In food terms: First you gotta get the icing ON the cake before you can smooth it out.

 

Anyway, I just wanted to share the news with you peoples cause you’re awesome and continue to read these posts. Hope your March went well! here’s to a better April!

 

Cheers!





Sneak Peaks

15 06 2013

Hey you guys!

I write this not from the inconsistent bulge of the fitness ball (they took that away from me.) But from the edge of a 20 gallon trash can. I live for adaptation. (though to be honest the rim is sort of cutting into my thighs; I cannot feel my toes.)

Alright well time to follow through on some promises and share with you some synopsis of the works I’ve been laboring over. Sarah’s gonna kill me that I’m working on so many at one time. But she’s in Hawaii so what’s she gonna do? (um, that’s just a joke. She would find a way.)

I have two primary works that take up the majority of my efforts and then a third which just keeps hanging out:

Tabitha (working title but it may stick for good): I’m going all Lord of the Rings on this one. It’s a fantasy novel set in a world of Celtic Mythology. So it’s all about fairies, dragons and so forth. The story line is very complex so it would take a while to explain it all. But summed up Tabitha is the princess of the Fae realm and has to figure out how to save her world before the Terrors destroy everything. It already checks in at over 70,000 words and counting. The story line keeps expanding though so there is a great possibility that this will wind up as a trilogy.

Joshua Burnam and the Killer Cereal: This is a middle grade novel that I’ve been working on since the age of 12 or 13. I just finished the first draft of it last July. (I sure did take my sweet time didn’t I?) Anyway I have been working on the revisions and my goal is to have an agent ready manuscript by December. I’m over halfway done with the edits and still have 6 months left so I think I can do it. The book is about Joshua Burnam who is the world’s best detective. He is head strong, prideful and gets into unending amounts of trouble. Thankfully Manafred his trusty assistant is always there to help him out of a pinch. Told from Josh’s point of view, the story follows these two blokes in their quest to save the world from an evil genius who is trying to take over the world through the use of mind controlling cereal. Note: comes complimentary with lots of laughs and a healthy suspicion of what really resides in your breakfast. Runs around 40,000 words

le Madame: oh boy. Ok, so here I tell the story of a prostitute in 19th century Europe who wants to be a writer but whom  no one wants to publish because of her shady profession. Tides turn when a Christian publishing firm contacts her about possible publication and the stipulations it involves. This is a story of  autonomy, temptation, and forgiveness for loved ones who have had damaging influences. I’m only a few chapters in but am loving the character development and the situational stresses they are enduring.

 

Anyway, mix that awesomeness up with all my jobs and school and you have one busy chikie. And that’s not even including the host of poems, memoirs and short fiction I’ve been working away on. One day all this effort will pay off. But right now I’m enjoying the journey. Now if you’ll excuse me I have to go rub the life back into the lower half of my body so that I can get back to work.

Cheers!





I am not a Web Master

16 02 2013

I am not a web master. I don’t code. I don’t game and I have to use google to fix most of my computer problems. (which means I need at least one functioning computer or device. But I bet you already knew that.)

I am however a writer and I can run a blog. At least I hope I can. If you’re reading this than I probably can. Otherwise I’m just talking to myself, which is ok too.

You might be wondering where I’m going with this. The answer is plain and simple, in the life and times of me, when asked to copy write for someone’s website I said no problem. That’s totally my groove.
Then they asked if I could maintain the website. Slightly more involved but ok I figured it out.
Wrench was thrown in the system when the asked me to attach a logo to the page.
First I was like *eye twitch*
Then I was all “surely he must be joking”

He wasn’t joking.

I am not one much for numbers. I can do geometry and physics. But don’t ask me to preform abstract algebra, calculus or any form of advanced trig. I only choose to accept dealing with numbers in applied science. And I’ll preform the 4 basic math functions all day long. But if you start telling me about words made from numbers, chances are I’ll start tuning you out and wondering why your teeth are crooked, or noticing that your eyebrow color does not match that of your hair color.

So no, I cannot just magically lick and stick a logo into a website header. Not unless there is clear edit and insert here button. I took one required computer class in college. All we did was copy and paste and cut and paste and beat the same dead horse every computer class since 2nd grade had taught us to do. I think I slept through most of those classes that semester.

I have this theory. All the nerds in all the world got together and decided to make things overly complicated when it comes to communication with computers. If I wan my background to be red. By golly why can’t I just code the word red instead of assigning it it’s own phone number. They did this to stay in business. Job security.

Heartless ninny muggins!

By now you might be getting the impression that I’m a little peeved. You might be right. I’m standing in silent condemnation of HTML. Even though it is presently letting me reach out to you dear reader. That is what is called irony.

Ok well I’m going to cash in on some sleep for the night. Good afternoon to my readers in France.

Cheers





Ode to the Frustration of the Fitness Ball

21 12 2012

Balancing Act

They vehemently deny me the use of a chair

for my sit upon, choosing instead to supply

a fitness ball for those times when “you might

be sitting down.” But my legs are too short

for this rubberized globe, so I find myself balanced

on the North Pole with my feet splashing

round near Australia. But after thirty minutes

on the Arctic circle the butt turns numb and starts

to slip towards Southern territories, namely the

Tropic of Cancer because that’s when my feet

touch the ground. But then my knees stick out

and seem to catch every cabinet handle. My sciatic

is thrown out of shape but the chiropractor doesn’t say

anything when she realigns my back in the very

same place as last time and the time before. So

with bruised knees and a sore spine I’ll continue to

sit, sway and fall on this accursed fitness ball,

waiting for the next free co-pay day.

Image (1)

 

 








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