My Real Name is David Jones – Letters of Note

When I called in this, my manager’s office, a few moments ago I was handed my very first American fan letter – and it was from you. I was so pleased that I had to sit down and type an immediate reply, even though Ken is shouting at me to get on with a script he badly needs. That can wiat (wi-at? That’s a new English word which means wait).

I’ve been waiting for some reaction to the album from American listeners. There were reviews in Billboard and Cash Box, but they were by professional critics and they rarely reflect the opinions of the public. The critics were very flattering however. They even liked the single “Love You Till Tuesday”. I’ve got a copy of the American album and they’ve printed the picture a little yellow. I’m really not that blond. I think the picture on the back is more ‘me’. Hope you like those enclosed.

In answer to your questions, my real name is David Jones and I don’t have to tell you why I changed it. “Nobody’s going to make a monkey out of you” said my manager. My birthday is January 8th and I guess I’m 5’10”.

Via Letters of Note

Today we lost a legend
and I’m truly saddened by his passing
he taught me to always be myself
even if it’s a lesson I often keep forgetting

He was always true to his artistic vision
never seeming to care what everyone else thought
he was one of the few artists I truly admired
his unique and giving soul hardly bought

but his legacy will live on
and I hope this and next generations will know
that there will never be another David Bowie
may all copycats come…and go.

Daily Prompt

Muse

Well, he was bound to make an appearance within the pages of my art journal, though I didn’t get him quite right.  Still, it’s nice to get that out of my system, especially since he was the one who got me writing again, after a ten year hiatus.  Why the hiatus?  Well, life happened.  I was miserable though I didn’t know why – till I started writing again, and the house hasn’t been tidy since.

So if you don’t recognize him (it’s hard because I drew the eyes too large), it’s Richard Armitage, from one of his first selfies on Twitter last year.  I should have picked a better picture, but it is what it is.

Today also marks the day that someone on Wattpad was brave enough to tell me what was not quite right with my novel in progress, Loving Ashe.  I basically took the cowardly way out with the ending.  Instead of writing the ending I really wanted, which was quite like “killing” my darling protagonist, I made everything just right and perfect.  No whoa! you didn’t! factor definitely.  And I’m glad she pointed it out because it’s been bugging me all this time – why I took an otherwise perfect novel and gave it such a blah ending when I already had three chapters of that finale done and dusted.

But at least it’s still a work in progress though. It just means maybe this time, I’m writing the ending as it was meant to be.  And wouldn’t you know it?  That novel started out as a Daily Prompt writing challenge right here on my blog exactly two years ago – with Richard Armitage in mind, no less!

Back To The Drawing Board

I finally dug out my art supplies, which includes a small (5×8)100-page Fabriano Artist’s Journal that I am finally using.  It’s only been 5 years since they’ve been stashed in the garage, and almost 10 years of not actually drawing anything on paper although I did do some illustration last year, which lasted 5 days and only with pen – no color – for Sketchuary.

Though I’ve long dabbled in computer graphics, I miss the feel of pencils between my fingers, the way textured paper feels under my skin and most of all, seeing the work blossom in front of my eyes (which are in need of glasses, it turns out so I’m finally digging out my glasses as well and just finally got an updated prescription).

So if you’re wondering what’s with all the drawings – that’s why.  And this time I’m tackling color.  It’s amazing the things I’m beginning to see now that I’m paying attention to color more and more.  While I can write about a beautiful sunset, drawing and coloring it is a whole different animal.  A sunset is no longer as simple as I thought it used to be – it’s an organic arrangement of yellows and oranges and reds (and sometimes not even reds) and green grass is just not plain green but an explosion of different shades that I’m now determined to capture on paper.

I wonder though how to tackle subjects I see on social media.  Do I ask their permission first if I see a non-commercial picture on Instagram that I want to capture on paper?  I don’t know.  I don’t want to draw icons and stars all the time, and I’m not ready to draw out the stuff that comes out of my head  (they’re dark).  How does that work?

Piercing Curious

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Piercing-curious

A lot of people who know me have no idea I draw or make art. I guess I’m more known for my work as a massage therapist than my writing and even my drawings.

With my recent decision to step down from teaching massage after seven years (I’ll keep my private practice though), while it was depressing and one of the scariest decisions I’ve made so far (and not yet formalized), I’m amazed at the creativity that has been unleashed since that last class. It’s like a heavy weight has been lifted off my shoulders and all because I need to devote time to write and not only that, but after finally coming out of hiding from all the writing, I have discovered my muse and have become more inspired to do more.

It’s scary when one ventures out their front door, indeed.

Anyway while my ramblings have nothing to do with the blog post, this is from model Garrett Neff’s Instagram and his captioned musing over getting an ear piercing – or not.

This picture is also what I sent my mom for Mother’s Day and is her favorite, prompting her to say, “See?  If you only took art when I told you to that summer instead of karate, you’d be a famous artist by now!”

Mothers know best, right?

What’s Scarier Than Halloween?

2013-Participant-Facebook-ProfileWhy, NaNoWriMo, of course!  An event where writers from all over the world sit in front of their laptops and computer screens and even notebooks and attempt to write out a 50K novel in 30 days.

So what am I doing?

Well, I’m doing the cray-cray and have decided at the last minute to do NaNoWriMo for the second year in a row.  Forget that I failed last year’s NaNoWriMo, writing only 16K words out of the 50K required when I lost the motivation to write after reading a certain YA novel that kinda had the same idea I had.  It was definitely disappointing, I tell you.

Considering that I hadn’t written in over ten years before that was probably too ambitious on my part as well.

So this year, I’m doing it again, but this time I’m not reading any more novels for the month of November.  I can read references, of course, for research.  But no more novels.  I gotta write it all out instead.

Unfortunately I’ve gotten way too comfortable in my fan fiction bubble.  Since last year’s grand failure, I’ve churned out 145K words for one fan fiction novel called Broken, and then there’s another 78K words so far for a fan fic piece set in Middle Earth called A Willing Heart.  Don’t even get me started on another one that’s running 10K words that’s set in 1180 England – yep, fan fic again called Waiting for Dawn.  I mean, once upon a time, I never heard about fanfic and here I am, having gotten too comfortable with it, and I’ve yet to book my flight out of Middle Earth as we speak.

I did accomplish writing over 90K words for an original story, Finding Sky, for Camp NaNoWriMo  in July so all in all, it’s not bad.  But the story’s not done, and it’s been hibernating since August.  I’ve also written a few short stories, one of them being The Girl At the Top of the Stairs.

nanowrimo_5thSo beginning tomorrow, I shall be freaking out over what story to write for this year’s NaNoWriMo.  I mean, I’ve motivated myself by even making up a cool book cover, and I even have a tentative title from my last year’s entry – but even I know that won’t matter if the words won’t spill out of me.  See what I mean about doing the cray cray?  I mean, what am I thinking?  I could clean up the house and feed the kid, you know.  And even show up for work now and then.  Instead, I’m going to attempt to write a 50K novel in 30 days beginning tomorrow!  Am I panicking?  You betcha!

This time I’ve actually got writing buddies whom I have been so eager to motivate to do the challenge with me (just don’t tell them I’m freaking out and screaming my head off internally); I’ve been blogging for over a year, and have actually made some wonderful online friends (oh hai!) – some of whom read my stories, fanfic and original pieces on Wattpad.

Oh, and Wattpad is one of NaNo’s partners this year and you can win $2,000 for writing and posting your story on their site.  What a way to be accountable to your reader, eh?

Oh well, it’s scary as heck but someone’s gotta do it.

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Muse

When I Met My Muse

I glanced at her and took my glasses
off—they were still singing. They buzzed
like a locust on the coffee table and then
ceased. Her voice belled forth, and the
sunlight bent. I felt the ceiling arch, and
knew that nails up there took a new grip
on whatever they touched. “I am your own
way of looking at things,” she said. “When
you allow me to live with you, every
glance at the world around you will be
a sort of salvation.” And I took her hand.

—William Stafford

eva-green

I’m Back in Circulation… Well, Sort Of

So Camp NaNoWriMo is officially over and I made it to about 95K words – including chapters that got chucked along the side and more chapters that got chucked along the other side for later.  Whew!  This writing bug is hard to shake off.

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And tomorrow, August 5th, winners get to collect their goodies and I can’t wait!

Well, I can actually.  I’m still deep into writing my novel and now wondering why the hell am I writing about rich people when I no longer am seeing one.

Talk about the worst timing…I might as well pour myself one and make it all up.

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Damn the Writers

Sometimes someone just gets it right.  Oh, so right.

And this is why I write…

May we remember that how we live is essential to how we write. And refuse to live small.

Stoned or sober, may we piss in the pools of wealthy neighbors, eat in bars with health code violations, and steal bibles from homeless shelters.

May we make love loudly, even when alone.

May we embarrass, embarrass, embarrass ourselves.

May we be lost. May we pen maps so others might become lost as well.

May our greatest risk not be our words but our lives. And may our lives spill words like molten rock.

Damn the writers, God. Then bless us with the words to describe it.

To read the entire article, click here.

Damn the Writers | Owen Egerton

Sneak Peek from Camp NaNoWriMo

First of all, I’m coming up for air to put up my latest word count – that is, if I don’t delete whole chapters again like I’ve been doing the last two days.

54KNANOWRIMO

But before I continue, I’d like to thank draliman for sponsoring me and bolstering my ego just when I needed it. If you’d like to sponsor me and support literacy programs throughout libraries and schools, the word count image will take you directly to the donation page.  Or you can click on the Camp NaNoWriMo badge on the right of the page.

Anyway, my simple romance has turned into a mystery/erotic/thriller and at 53,625 words, I really can’t write a simple story to save my life.  And judging by the way the story is going so far, I’m not even at the half-way point.  So that only means that I need to keep on writing.

And stop editing too much…

I’m Off To Summer Camp – Camp NaNoWriMo, That Is!

I guess people deal with grief in many different ways, and I found that my way of dealing with grief after my father’s death on June 27 was to write vague nonets and complete this Weekly Writing Challenge which transported me to my happy place – Los Angeles, the South Bay, and most of all people and places I knew, and still know.

That writing challenge then morphed into a story that is still ongoing and is now at 30,000 words.  And wouldn’t you know it?  At 30,000 words, I even got to the point of revealing a villain into the story?  I am so beyond thrilled!  I so smell a bestseller in the air!  I do!  I do!

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A little intermission to actually ground me in reality:
Here’s The Writing and Publishing Process (in Gifs)

So armed with my 30,000-words-in-4-days-feat, I found myself wondering why the hell NaNoWriMo had to happen only on November when I was already halfway through a novel myself in June.  Lo and behold!  I just found out that Camp NaNoWriMo is on starting July 1st and I am now off to Summer Camp, NaNoWriMo Style!

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Which means that as I work to complete a novel in 30 days, I’m also hoping to raise money to support the Young Writers Program and the Come Write In program for libraries and independent bookstores through The Office of Letters and Light, the people behind NaNoWriMo.

And besides writing to deal with loss and betrayal, it’s great to know that writing towards the goal of a finished novel not only gets me a novel that is not fan fiction, but original work but one that also helps raise money towards the support and promotion of literacy everywhere.

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So here’s hoping you’ll join me as I go to Summer Camp for the month of July.  I’ll sneak out of camp to do my Daily Prompts and other Writing Challenges, of course, and thank goodness there’s always WiFi so I can check what everyone else is writing.  In the meantime, I hope to make sure the kid is fed, meals are cooked and the classes I’m supposed to teach be taught as I go about this challenge.  And a little bonus – you’ve just discovered my real identity so my internet cover is now blown everywhere.

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But then, isn’t that the life of a writer anyway?  To whip off that cloak of anonymity (or is that the cloak of invisibility?) and be finally revealed, even if it includes asking you to donate money for a good cause.