Tag Archive | Dreams

Writing a new life

I’ve talked before about how long and from whence my writing block came. I’ve been trying to bust through it, would start and stop. Incomplete Word files are piling up in the My Documents section of the computer and all I can think of is WHY NOT?

Why not this one here? Because it hits too close to home? But that one was distanced from me and it went nowhere quickly, too. Of course the heroine was a little whiny. And on and on it goes, excuse (yes, I know what they are) after excuse while stories pile up. It’s a massacre!

So I tried something different. I’ve been writing on a computer for decades. It’s easy (was easy) to simply zone out and watch the story as my fingers flew across the keyboard. I write my blogs the same way. But my stories… haven’t been happening.

I purposely quit reading books this week. The book I reveiwed, I actually read a while back ago (but Hey! it’s just now getting ready to come out so that worked perfectly). Sometimes you need to give your brain a rest from other people’s dreams in order to let your own imagination come out and play. So that’s what I did.

Imagine my suprise when I picked up a pad of paper and a pen and started writing a short story. And have been working on it, continuing on in bits and peices (as a single mom that’s all the time I’ve got right now). Is it perfect? Hell no. Will it need stuff added in, well of course! Even when I write on a computer I tend to be a bit sparse on setting, focusing more on character. I go back and paint in the details, if you will. But you know what this story has that the others don’t?

A smart ass heroine. Difficulties.

The fact that after the first inital burst I’m still writing it is the main difference.

I’ve finished stories before, of course I have. But no matter what happens, I’m rooting for this story.

Because I really, really need to cross the finish line again.

 

Cleaning House

So yesterday was a hard labor kind of day. I had help (thank you, Leyla!) and it went more quickly and more… enjoyable than if I had been by myself. It also helped me with my creative muddle.

Have you ever had one of those? Where your brain is so cluttered up with this and that and soon you can’t remember even how to start writing again (alternately: insert creative obsession here). I started the reclaiming the garage project earlier in the week, all by myself. And little by little, things started getting stripped away.

Like the need to hold on to stuff just because it’s mine. Mine I say! I might need that craptastic pan, even though the teflon is peeling up off the bottom. Coffee mugs that I never used because they were too heavy (my grip gives, so a heavy cup to begin with is a bad idea) might come in handy some day.

Mostly, I was holding on to all that stuff because it is what remained after being married to a meth addict for 10 years. I got out alive, with my son, mostly intact. I packed whatever I could into the back of my dad’s car and left. Totally willing to leave everything behind (the pots and pans and some of the other stuff came back to me in a somewhat different way). It left me  with a fierce need to keep EVERYTHING. Because, you know, things dissappear when you live with a drug addict.

But this isn’t about that. Not at the core.

It’s about cleaning up my life, both metaphorically and literally. Because as those boxes were opened and gone through, as the books hit the shelves (voracious reader, remember, there were a LOT of them). I haven’t written, except in bits and spurts, since before my son was born. Because I couldn’t… I had to hide what was going on in my life, in little boxes around my soul.

When you write, you bare your soul.

Letting go of all that stuff, well, it was more than letting go of all that stuff. I actually had a great idea for a short story. And for 3 or 4 essays/non fiction pieces. We’ll see where they go, but the important thing is I’m thinking.. dreaming, again.

All I know is that coming out on the otherside? It’s marvelous!

Dream Snatchers, Time Wasters, Excuse Makers

So last week was a book wasteland. Bought a couple, thought they’d be good… but no dice. Life’s too short for bad books… So instead, here it is, a bad blog 😦

Did come up with the opening line, tho. For the anger project. “My family excels in the fine art of the polite fiction.” See, and I’ve already written it here, where it will remain safe and sound, until I can find a mother’s helper to come in and help me so I can start writing the darn thing. Actually, that isn’t true. It was, at one point. It’s not anymore. Ray has grown so much, and with the Skylanders I might not see or hear form him for a while if I set him infront of the video game. That probably makes me a bad mommy. However, finding a little time for myself, especially when it pertains to writing… That is a very good thing. How does it help him to keep putting off my dreams? (BTW– he has not snatched my dreams… I just liked the way that title sounded).

Anyways, I JUST finished a cute little cozy mystery and reading one of the BEST ROMANCE NOVELS ever! I mean ever! Coming from someone who reads as much as I do, that says a lot. The reviews will be up on those by Sunday. Saturday night if I can 🙂

What are the biggest excuse makers you have with your writing? How do you over come them?

 

PS– We’ve started doing shared stories, the princeling and I. And tonight he asked me to start writing them down. How cool is that, to be writing stories off the cuff with your 5 year old and hearing him say “and then…” with the special tone of voice that throws the story to the next person. AWESOME!

Music at the Museum

Different segments of the arts often intertwine. Music, paintings, sculpting, words used in both poetry and prose… they all influence each other. Many times an author has a “Play List” included in their Author Notes, and our words are often bound with a work of art on the cover.

The Haggin Museum often has a music program held in the room with the thirteen naked ladies. (I don’t know the name of the painting, but suffice it to say that it is a hallmark in my life, is much prettier than “thirteen naked ladies” implies and I have postcards and the magnet of it.) The first time I went with my father, it was for a talk on the Stockton Opera by Jaffe, with musical selections on the piano as well as a soloist.

My father cried. Happy tears.

We went yesterday to hear the Divertimento String Quartet. The first selection that they played was everything I imagined: so light and airy that if you closed your eyes you could see the pretty girls dancing across polished wooden floors.

The second piece…not so much.

The piece was played well, but I have to say I’m glad that Velickovic gave a little talk about it  before hand, explaining the strife and anguish, the political climate of both the country and the composer at the time it was written.

Because that piece took my anger and amplified it right out of context.

Have I mentioned lately that I have anger issues?

We ended up leaving, right after the second piece was finished. It had nothing to do with the performance, but I had to pick my son up from his other grandparents and quite frankly my father could tell I was ready to pop a cork.

At the first movement washed over me, I thought of scenes such as to be found in swords and sorcery. As it escalated, so did my pissed-off-itude. I started thinking of the piece I kept starting to write, what I wanted it to be and what it keeps ending up being. And until yesterday, I have to tell ya, I had no intention of every really writing it.

It’s a rock opera using Bon Jovi songs. Originally intended as The Mommy Monologues,  I was going to talk about raising my little ray of sunshine.

The best intentions…

It keeps coming out as the Meth Monologues. As in my husband was a meth addict and I’m still pissed off not only at him but also at myself and want nothing more than to beat the crap out of something. I have always dealt with my anger through my writing. Always.

Still, I have tied my fingers into knots, trying *not* to write that story.

There are a million reasons why it’s not a viable project: I’ve never written a play, could never in a million years get the permissions needed to stage it, and even if I did it would be too hurtful to ever allow my son to see it.

It’s not a viable project.

But apparently, it’s what I need to write. I’m tired of keeping the crap  inside, battering at my fingers every time I sit down to write.

Maybe then I can start to forgive myself.

Marekting Monday— First Try

1. NOTE: SOME STRONG LANGUAGE

In Mr. Ewanick’s defense…. I’m not even sure he’s getting the emails. But here is the first try. Let me know what you think. As I said before, according to dear husband, Kia already beat us to the punch. But some good ideas none the less, I think.

This was emailed 2 or 3 weeks ago.

TTFN!

Dear Mr. Ewanick,

My first love was a 1976 Camaro. It was red with a white vinyl hard top. It wasn’t just the speed and power that led to devotion. It was the confidence and freedom that it conferred on me by default. In the Camaro, I was an Amazon Princess.  During the days before self help & Dr. Phil, the only “therapy” I needed was a full tank of gas and the open road.  My best friend and I used to hop in the car and just drive for hours. No destination, the drive itself  the point. I can still remember driving it through the Sunol Pass, windows down, blasting AC/DC’s Highway to Hell– “Hey Momma, Look at me, I’m on my way to the promised land.”

20 years later, and I still miss that car. I miss that feeling, which has never been re-captured. When it became apparent that I had no talent for working on cars, let alone a muscle car, and my dad (elderly) couldn’t, The Amazonian Princess’ chariot was passed down to the next generation (my nephew). He still has it, BTW, along with several others. We’re a loyal bunch.

If I would do anything to re-capture that kind of freedom,  where every time I got in my car I was escaping INTO my real life… I can only imagine that GM & Chevrolet would love to reclaim the devotion of consumers. To that end, I have a plan.

First off, the current marketing  strategy (or lack there of) is not working. The only thing I can remember from a GM commercial is an accessory: On Star. Not the car, not the brand, just On Star. I finally saw a Chevrolet commercial last night, and I still couldn’t tell you what car it was selling. There were no people, just pictures of cars and numbers and a voice over. There was nothing for me to connect to.

When I went through your website, I noticed that you are advertising the 2011 Blaze as having been globally tested. I hate to be the one to tell you this, but we don’t really care about what people in England, or France or Kalamazoo think about a car. During the recession, the American People (regular people) have become more insular. We have a belief that no one else can possibly know what we’re going through, or what our lives are like.  Do they have to pinch pennies until they bleed copper tears? How much stuff do they have to fit into the trunk? Do they have to travel 60, 100 miles a day just to get to and from work?

GM, and Chevrolet, needs to connect to American consumer again. Especially the female consumer. The men are going to come to the Camaro and Corvette regardless. Of course, you have the best advertising ever in the Transformer’s franchise. My four year old son can pick Bumblebee out of a swarm of yellow cars. (Although it took me MONTHS to figure out that ALL the Autobots are Chevy’s… Except maybe Optimus. And that ain’t right.)

But us women, we’re different. We like to know weird things about a car. Will my head (pony tail, hair) hit the roof? How many groceries can I fit in the trunk? Christmas gifts? How easy is it to get the infant/car/booster seat in and out of the back seat? How safe is the car? Does it make me look like the princess I am, with out needing Paris Hilton’s allowance for upkeep? How reliable is it? Does it have enough giddy-up and go so that I can escape into my real life in it?

What I propose is that you get real word of mouth going. Get some company cars into the hands of bloggers (preferably mine). We write about the cars, our adventures, even our complaints and submit them to you. You then run the blogs, cull them for advertising vignettes, and also gain invaluable data. It will also give you credibility (the voice of the blogs is going to be important) and relevancy. Plus, you can run a “Blog your Way into a Chevrolet” contest at the same time, which will generate even more interest.

You need to get the word out. When I went through your website for the current models, there are 2 car models I thought had been discontinued and three I had never heard of under Cars alone. That’s just not good enough for the Chevy I remember. The Chevy I remember allowed a girl plagued with self doubt to kick ass.

Lets go kick some ass together.

Julie and Julia: The Word Project

So I finally watched the movie Julie & Julia last night. Loved it. Made my heart just a wee bit happier for rooting for Julie. And Julia. But it made me start thinking…

Which, as we all know,  can be a dangerous thing with me. Heh.

Lately my brain has been spinning, trying to find a way to climb out of the pit of nastiness & depression that can try and seep in and steal the joy. One of the ways that I’ve been trying to do that is to petition GM, Joel Ewanick to be exact, for a new car. Or a job where I can afford a new car.

To that end, I’ve been sending him a marketing plan about one a week or every two weeks maybe. I’ve only sent in two so far. The first one, well, it was good but Kia beat poor GM to the punch. The second one rocks. Really.

So I have all these ideas for marketing a brand that it seems like everyone has given up on.A guy in Australia was telling me he thought Chevrolet had gone out of business. Seriously. I’ve been emailing Mr. Ewanick, but apparently he doesn’t like the ideas. So should I just give up?

C’MON. It wouldn’t be the American Dream if Washington had just given up.

Besides, quitting will just get me what I’ve always gotten. Lets face it, what I’ve got isn’t enough. If it was, I wouldn’t be using titles like “American Dream vs. American Nightmare.”

What’s new? Well, lets see… Apparently my creative spark is leaning towards marketing right now. Which would be great, if I knew how to extrapolate money from those ideas. I have the beginnings… I’ve been trying. So now I’m going to take the next step.

I’m going to start posting my ideas. And here is where my quandary lies. I’ve written a wide range of things on this blog, but it’s been intensely personal. Should I keep just the one blog, or go ahead and create a whole new one for just this?

Of course, the name of the blog is Wyn Words. MY WORDS. All of my words… Or only some of them? I’m currently leaning towards all of my words, get the full experience J  I rarely, if ever, post anything that I’m ashamed of or wouldn’t want someone in particular to read.

What do you think? I’ll post my first letter to Mr. Ewanick shortly, either here or somewhere else. Because someone, somewhere, is going to read my words and think “Hot Dawg! Lets get this girl writing for us!”

American Dream vs. American Nightmare (the car dream)

My first love was a car. I’m not ashamed of that fact. It was a 1976 Camaro and worthy of that love. Red with a white vinyl hard top it was love at first site. I was a rock n roll princess in that car, and had am eclectic soundtrack to match.  Poison. AC/DC. Ratt. Motely Crue. Ohhh…. I was a rock n roll princess.

I started the college track, the one where I made Dean’s List and finished with a MA in English and a finished Novella, in that car. I had confidence. I had adventures. Driving to the store, to work, anywhere was an adventure in that car. R and I would travel an hour to go see a band in a bar, wind whipping through our hair as I pressed the accelerator and DROVE.

I was living the American Dream.

Now I got a broke down Neon. No money, not even to buy a rattletrap. SIGH.  I feel like I’m trapped in the American Nightmare.  I know that there are other people out there in the same, or worse situations. But it always feels so much worse when it’s your own version.

I love the beach. My son, 4 years old, has never been. Only a fraction of that is because of money. Some of it, too, is that the adventure wasn’t complete. We needed a cool car. A reliable car. A fun car.

My dream car? A candy apple red Chevrolet Camaro. I’ll admit, though, that if I had a yellow one with a black stripe down the middle… Well. I’d get the next generation’s American Dream into overdrive.

Of course it isn’t practical. Of course. I’m not stupid. Gas, insurance, blah blah blah. We’re talking dreams here. I’m older, and so are my friends. Not sure they could handle the back seat. Or that I could handle a car seat in a back seat that folds forward. But if they had a car that fit my life… And made me feel like HRH Mommy? (And okay, if I had the money…)

Ohhh… Money would be a good thing. Travel. A real home. And a kickin’ car. A car worthy of a soundtrack. A life that reflects my dreams, and not one that I want desperately to wake up from.

(I promise to be more upbeat next time)

Writing for hope

So I sent off the email yesterday morning. If I don’t get a response soon, I may just post it here and see what we see. But there are 2 things that are really resonating with me right now…

Instead of thinking about what I’d normally do, I have assigned myself the persona of one of my favorite characters when it comes to my writing: Alex. She kicks butt and never asks questions about it, does what needs to be done, and at the end of the day loves her family and has compassion for her fellow travellers. It really sucks though, that I have to PRETEND confidence in my writing.  But, it is what it is, and as long as it gets me to push the SEND button on my email it’ll do. Who knows, maybe I’ll start sending in the other ideas too… It’s an idea, not sure it’s a good one, but it is an idea.

In researching, revising, rough drafting that email, I have come up with several other ideas. Writing begets writing. Hopefully, someday QUICKLY something will stick with someone.

Because I need hope. I need to get out of the muck I’m stuck in. I need some hope, a little flicker at the end of the tunnel. I need a lot of things, but I need to live my dreams and escape back into my real life… The one that I used to have where every day was an adventure and I my very own soundtrack.

Yah. Rock n Roll Princess meets kick butt Alex. That’s who I want to be when I grow up.

Nerves of Jelly

The problem with having self esteem issues is that when you do decide to Go Big or Go Home, your nerves start wobbling like Jelly… Or Jello. Whatever.

The key is to do it anyway. Hit send. Commit to the act.

Because otherwise, how will our children ever learn? How can I tell Ray Ray to grab the brass ring, to go for broke, if I can’t or won’t do it? The kid has enough problems, and he is busy conquering each and every one of them.

So.

Mommy went big, so she can go home and look Ray Ray in his adorable eyes.

Musings, Dreams & ESPN

If I had the option, I’d play with words for a living. Not necessarily writing, mind you, but playing with words. It’s something that I love to do, something that brings me joy.

I can hear the question already. How do you play with words if not by writing?

Well, of course writing has a lot to do with it. My neice-cousin-friend came over the other day, excited about a project she’s starting. Making purses. And this girl is talented with a capital T.

So. I told her what her company was going to be called, her tag line and even some names for her collections. The names are all a play on words, on cliche’s, and it was SO MUCH FUN. Now, she might never use them, but it doesn’t matter. I had lots of fun, and so did she.

I also like making acrostic stories. Not the poems, where it spells the name going down the side. Nope. I do stories with them. And poetry, too, but not acrostic. I love writing, don’t get me wrong. But in my dreams, Wynwords Inc. does a lot more than just short stories and novellas and blog posts. Wynwords Inc has FUN!

And no, I’m not going to tell you the ideas we came up for L. Why? Because then someone else might use it before she was able to, and then I’d NEVER get my gorgeous, sparkly in a cool, weird-wyn way purse that was made just for me. So there!

What would you do, if you could earn money doing the one thing that made you happy? That you had fun at?  I think Bri would be a sports announcer or have a sports talk show or something. HEY! ESPN! Why don’t you have a sports talk show for all these men out there? All the shows I’ve ever clicked past look like a news show. Might widen your audience, too, bring in more women which could translate into advertising dollars.

Oops. There I go again. See what I mean? Wynwords Inc: Idea Factory for hire. CALL ME, ESPN!!!!