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Showing posts from March, 2013

Authors go Hand in Hand with Sleep Deprivation

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Really, I intend to sleep. No really, I do. But I get out of work and I make myself dinner. A hot cup of tomato soup with a some tea in the winter. A bright green salad with a cup of red wine in the spring, and I watch some TV as I munch away. That or read a book. But than I sit at my computer. I check the world wide web (talking to you lovely people) before pulling up word.

Click-clack, I type away like a captain to a pirate ship on the stormy seas. Right now I'm just editing, but it's worse when I write the first draft. And as I hunch over my keyboard, the time falls away, one grain of sand at a time. Maybe if I had an old fashioned face clock that tick, tick, ticks as the seconds pass by, I would notice just how late it's gotten. It could be midnight, or past three by the time I finally look up, and sometimes I'm no further along than when I first sat down to work... and I have to get up at five, or seven the next morning, but I just can't pull myself away. One …

The Three typs of Learning

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One of the things Adam, the intuitive healer I saw, had to tell me was that people have limitations. That people just can't experience the world the way I do, and many can't see into people the way I do. One of the things he used to explain this limitation to me, was the three types of learning. Auditory, visual, and kinesthetic. He asked me which I was. The answer to that was simple. I'm extremely visual, and kinesthetic. I need to see it done, and I need to do it. If your try to sit me down and explain things to me, chances are I'll give you a baffled look vaguely reminiscent of a guilty dog, and not understand a word of what you said.
He said that, when it comes to my gift for seeing into people, I need to understand that the reason they can't see me that way, is for the same reason I can't lean in an auditory fashion. But that's not the point of this entry. (Big surprise I deviate completely from topic.)

What I really wanted to speak up about, was the …

Kiki's Delivery Service (Inspiration)

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I love animated films, and Hayao Miyazaki, is one of my favorite animators/story teller. Kiki's Delivery service is one of the older films of his. But if your an artist, or even if you've ever felt as if you've lost your magic touch, it's the movie to watch.

Kiki is a witch. At the age of thirteen, on the night of a full moon, she leaves home to begin one year of training on her own. Which is a tradition for all witches. But, while her mother makes potions, and other witches read fortunes or cast spells, Kiki doesn't have any skill except flying on her broom stick.

When she ends up in a big city on the ocean, a place far away from home where many people haven't seen a witch for years, she opens up a flying delivery service. But all this isn't the heart of the movie, at least not to me. The heart of the movie, is finding your own inspiration, your own person, and trusting your spirit.

As it happens, Kiki begins to feel like an outcast in this big city. After…

Life

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The reason artists get so frustrated with their work is because they know, try as they might, there's always something missing. Something a little not right, and this is true whether you write, or paint, or dance, or create. That's because there are things in this world that can never be explained, or put onto paper, or into sound and movement. No matter how great I write, I don't think I'll ever be able to explain to a person the beauty of the sunset on the beach if they've never seen it themselves. Even if they see a photograph in a magazine, it won't compare to seeing it in person. That's because beauty needs to be experienced, not witnessed from behind a solid plate of bullet proof glass.

Just like you or me. People want nothing more than to be with that one person who will know them without ever having to explain it. But the thing is your filled with that essence, that something that every artists tries to capture. Like the sunset, your he…

Using 'said' in your manuscript

I don't know if it's a personal taste, or just a really common thing among writers. But along with the telling of emotion, there's a lot of aversion to the, "he said, she said, we said together," tag lines.

I know it may seem repetitive, but the thing is 'said' reads more like a punctuation mark than an actual word. If you go through some of your favorite books, or at least most of the best sellers, you'll find they use 'said' or 'asked' ninety percent of the time. In fact, many agents will tell you that using anything but the common place 'said' sounds amateurish.

Lets look at an example from a conversation in my current manuscript 'The cursed Prince,' re-written with different tag lines.

Standing up for what you believe in

Conformity is so easy.
You can watch life go by,
and follow the rules,
the set standard for living.
Color inside the lines and take the straight and easy path, worn down and well traveled.

There's all the foot prints of those gone before you, as you march along with your wrists bruised in shackles. Because that's the way your parents went, and the way their parents went, and the way their parents went and... because that's the way they were told to go, by the people they were told to trust. They said that's the easy way, the only way to get what you want.

Want to know a secret? Shh, huddle close...

It's so much easier to be hand fed, and lead by chains than to think for yourself. Isn't it? Buy what they tell you to buy, do what they tell you to do, because their tricky, and it's the right way. Right? After all why would they lie to you? 

Maybe you can be happy that way. Maybe all you want is to trudge down that single, dry path with your chains rattling betwee…

The importance of taking a break

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I'm a workaholic. (Why do I feel like I'm making a confession at an AA meeting?)

I work two jobs, and I work on my novel when I'm not at either one. When I'm not doing that, I'm reading books with the intention of picking the brains of those published before me. If I'm not doing that, I'm helping a fellow writer with their work. When I'm not doing that, (and I won the war against my bed) I'm sleeping.

Work, work and more work. I never realized how very little time I take to sit down, and figure myself out. Just me time. No one else. Where I do nothing but sleep in, maybe groom my plants, read a book for the sake of the story and shut down the part of my brain that edits it into oblivion.

While I do take small moments to relax, have a cup of tea in the sunshine, take a nape on the floor with my cats (Who are excellent teachers of relaxation,) It seems I've forgotten, or never knew, the benefit of really putting some time aside for myself. Which …

A Sense of Self

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As you might have read in an earlier post, there's a tarot card reader at a tea bar called Tisane in West Hartfor Ct. I went to see him a few times, but I feel this most recent time budded the most results.

A sense of self. When your borne into the world you grow up learning who that is, learning what you want, what makes you happy, sad, angry. Turns out I don't have this, due to some sort of trauma, neglect, miss learned lessons. I can't tell you what I want. Even if you ask me I'll give you a general answer, and if you ask for details, chances are I'll give you a blank, slightly quizzical stare.

It ties into so much I don't even know where to begin, but I'm going to take classes. I was offered four classes for a fair price considering these things, and I'll take them, because I'd only begun to touch up on to many of the things he's  noticed before today.

I've asked myself so many times, Do I want to be a writer, or am I just a writer becau…

Letting Fear Stand in your Way

At this point I'm probably sure you know what my biggest passion is. Following your dreams and the importance behind them. One of the biggest reasons people never do is because of fear.

Fear of Failure.
Fear of judgment.
Fear of embarrassment,
and fear of rejection.

It always seems to be underlying every excuse I hear about why someone never jumps for what they want most. I know I do it too. But than I realized something. I'm more afraid of living my life in mediocrity, scrapping just to get by like some grubby ally cat, than I am of anything that might happen to me, in my pursuit to climbing that ladder to the stars. (Even though I'm afraid of heights.)

Psychologically speaking there's always other reasons of self worth that might make you think you don't deserve success, but that's deviating off topic and there's a book for that by Maxwell Maltz called, The New Psycho-Cybernetics. It's all about the importance of self image on your life as a whole.

An…

The out of control merry-go-round (Creative slumps)

On a warm summer day, when the sun is shinning hot, and the ice cream cone melts in your hand, the drone of pleasant (and sometimes a little creepy) music listlessly following you round and round, can be relaxing. There's the chipped paint on the saddle, the thrill of racing for your favorite beast or steed and the wind in your hair as the gears start up. Round, and round you go, at a steady, slow pace. But what about when it spins faster, and faster, and out of control? You can't jump off, and all you can do is wrap your arms around the pole as you spiral out of control.

Sometimes my writing feels like this. Most days are pleasant. The words flow naturally, the plot falls into place like neatly cut pieces. It happens slowly. I have to stop working a little earlier than usual. I take one too many tea breaks. But it the music starts to quicken.

Round and round, and round I go. Faster and faster. Until I'm threatening to throw the computer out the window and slamming doors. …

The Importance of Chasing Dreams

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There's a major crime committed every day. A sneak-thief that hides at your back, and gorges itself those little flickers of starlight behind your eyes.

Dreams. You've had them ever since you were a little kid, pretending to be a cop, or a firefighter, or an adventurer trekking through the amazon jungle like Indiana Johns. When your young, all these wishes and desires shine inside you and light up your eyes. I don't know when it happens, I don't know how I escaped, but at one point you go from believing those dreams can be reality, to thinking they're nothing more then romantic wished made on falling stars.

You've probably seen them everywhere. You'll probably see it in yourself. They're the people that smile when they talk about what they used to want. The shop they wanted to open but never did. The places they wanted to go but never could. You'll get a glimpse of that light in their eyes when they talk about it. Than in comes the thief, like a da…