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A Writer with a Thousand Dreams

You don’t write because you want to say something, you write because you have something to say. — F. Scott Fitzgerald

 

When I close my eyes, I can see stories. Stories of fantastical worlds, troubled characters, battles that need to be fought, and dark backstories that need only love to find some retribution. When I close my eyes, I see dreams. Dreams of bringing recognition to the lived experiences of people and communities who have been neglected & forgotten. And dreams of these stories–my stories–seeing the light and finally having a chance to speak to the hearts and souls who stretch their ears to hear them. Maybe that’s presumptuous and maybe my feeble words will become nothing more than ink splotches on a page (or pixels on a digital screen). But as my old sport Francis Scott suggests, I have quite a few things to say. And if I don’t tell my stories…who will?

I am a writer. Always have been, always will be. And I think it’s time to give my words a chance to see more than just the pink insides of my brain.

So…welcome to my blog friends. Here, you will see the unedited beauty of my consciousness in snippets of prose from my short stories, flash fiction pieces, samples of eloquent and more often than not, ineloquent poetry, and opinion pieces related to the art of writing.

Enjoy! xx

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Threads

Asha needed to explain to someone the art of making tea. It didn’t even require much expertise, she didn’t think, but the toilet water that she forcibly threw down her throat suggested that some people needed assistance with even the simplest things in life. No one should be offered such a horrible drink, especially not in a place like this where everything was already depressing.

Placing the empty cup back on its coaster, Asha sat back in the soft loveseat whose arms were weathered with age and constant rubbing of anxious hands.

“Shay?”

At the sound of the voice, she answered because it had been a while since anyone addressed her by that name.

“Tell Tash I’m still waiting for her to get that law degree.”

Asha looked at her dad. At the smooth wrinkle less skin and the luscious hair only slightly sprinkled with gray, then at his auburn eyes that she used to peer into hoping to glean some of the knowledge they held, but that she now peered into only wishing that they recognized her. She nodded placing on a smile that she knew didn’t reach her moistened eyes.

Asha was the lawyer.

And she had been out of law school for five years.

Camp Nanowrimo: Week Four

Word Count: 10,928

Well, there goes it. Camp Nanowrimo has come to an end and I finished 3k words shy of my 15k goal.

I admit this update is a tad bit late but life gets in the way you know. Depression hit and I barely had enough energy to get out of bed much less pick up my laptop and generate ideas out of nothing. So I wasn’t able to write much but I gotta say, 10k words is more than I had two months ago so I’d still say I’m winning.

Since I have no real updates about Project Amber, I figured I’d share a small snippet from this WIP:


The wooden doors of the map room gave way under the weight of the prince’s hands and he sidled on inside where his father, the King, stood waiting behind the long table. His knuckles were temporarily void of blood as he pressed down against the mahogany. A glance at the wrinkled pieces of parchment thrown haphazardly around the room and the tautness of his father’s eyebrows confirmed the prince’s assumptions that this was not to be a pleasant meeting.

“You called for me?” He asked from the doorway.

The King looked up, his features softening but only slightly at the sight of his son, and beckoned him over. He paused to wash his eyes over the prince’s appearance and raised a brow. “Have you been sparring in the courtyard again?”

The prince looked down at his sleeve where the scuff from the granite rubbed off on his frock and rubbed it off sheepishly. “Errik wanted–”

“Yes, I know, I know. The game is in a few months,” He shook his head and sighed. “I should’ve never agreed to let him enter. He has much more pressing matters to worry about.”

Much more princely matters, the prince added. Aloud he asked, “Has something happened?”

An air of concern shifted around his father as his already pale countenance grew paler.

He shifted a little higher on his toes and walked over to his son. “Come with me.” He said after sending the guards who always stood outside his door away. The prince grew more uneasy as they ambled down the hallway for the King rarely moved two inches without his personal guards.

Their footsteps echoed on the gray stoned floor. Through the King’s Wing, out to the courtyard and through to the Servant’s Quarters where the moss covering the granite structure glinted in the sunlight.

The prince was perplexed. “What are we doing here?” He asked as they stopped at the door. His father answered his inquiry with a swift knock on the door handle which was answered quickly by the Head Maid. Blond curls circled her head like the coils of a rattlesnake framing a face that had the countenance to match. The prince thought it crude that she wouldn’t think to better her appearance in the face of her King especially since by the swiftness of which she answered the door, this was not a chance meeting.

“My Lord, do come in. We’ve been waiting for your word about what to do with the body?”

Body?

The King raised his hand to his mouth. “Let’s discuss business from inside shall we?”


Thanks for reading! If you participated in Camp Nano this July, be sure to let me know how it went in the comments.

xx

Where Your Heart Is

I can’t write happy stories anymore.

Just recently, I’ve been thinking about my progress as a writer, looking back through all my older works and I’ve realized…there’s a stark difference between my mentality back then and my mentality now.

Flash fiction pieces and short stories written in high school all carry a certain element in them that many of works today lack. The voices of my characters have changed their tone and they’ve begun to sing a different song that my old characters can no longer resonate with. Sometimes it’s hard to pinpoint the root of such differences but I can at least trace them back to one feeling. Hope.

My stories are always chock full of conflict. But in high school and my first year of college, they all ended with the idea that the character was going to succeed. They were going to finally get the girl or overcome that internal battle they’d been plagued with for years. Fast forward to today and the only thing you will be left with from reading my stories is dread. Don’t get me wrong, it’s not like everybody dies at the end or the world collapses into the sun. It’s more like…a character reaches an obstacle that they can only surpass if an impossible miracle suddenly drops out of the sky.

Possible…but, not likely.

And though they be beautiful pieces of heart-wrenching content, I’d maybe not suggest it to someone looking for reasons to live.

But why the change? Where did the hope go? My guess is that it’s hard to write hope when everywhere you look, you see none. Every thought I seem to have these days is consumed with longing but no way to satisfy it. These past couple of years, I have dealt with so many challenges and it is easy to see those feelings reflected in my art. More and more I’m realizing how art actually works. How it comes from a place inside the soul that knows what you feel before the mind does. And I’m realizing more and more that art really is a reflection of a person’s heart if you know where to look.

At this time in my life, my heart seems to be looking for hope. And so too are my stories and characters. Someday we’ll both find it…hopefully.

xx

Camp Nanowrimo: Week Three

So it’s been three weeks and I can’t believe that Camp Nano is almost over! I had a slow beginning so I decided to back track and change my word count goal to 15k instead of 20k. Since this is Camp Nano and not actual Nano, I can do that. This feels much more doable and I’m really going to try and meet this goal. If all goes well, by the end of July, I’ll be about a quarter of the way into Project Amber.

As mentioned in my last update, I will be completing the second half of the #AuthorWouldYou tag. Read on and learn more about my writing process!


Author Would You? (Part TWO)

16. Would you rather work on multiple WIPs…or stick to one at a time?

Stick to one at a time. I need to wholeheartedly throw myself into a project so that I can spend enough time brainstorming and daydreaming good ideas.

17. Would you rather research needed topics for your WIP before…or after writing your book?

Uhhh…during? I can’t possibly know everything I need to research before I write the book and if I need to know some important fact for the world I’m building or the characters I’m creating then I mustn’t wait until I finish writing the book lest I throw the whole thing off balance! So definitely during.

18. Would you rather write a few sentences from a SC’s POV…or the antagonist’s POV?

The antagonist’s POV is always interesting because I like exploring the motivations–albeit sometimes backwards ones–of antagonists.

19. Would you rather allow yourself breaks from writing…or dedicate to writing everyday?

I allow myself breaks. I find that if I’m writing when I’m not feeling it, the result is an excellent pile of horse dung and then my future self hates me for leaving so many scenes to revise.

20. Would you rather write all day…or edit all day today?

Write. This word count needs to go UP.

21. Would you rather share your word count progress…or drink some more coffee?

Is tea an option?

22. Would you do a 15 minute sprint write and post your word count?

But of course. . .

Word Count: 322

23. Would you rather read your WIP out loud to friends/family…or have one stranger read your WIP?

Stranger. I’d probably receive more authentic reactions. Plus, I do not wish to read my writing out loud…like ever.

24. Would you rather write a happy scene…or a sad scene today?

Literally 95% of my writing is sad so I think you have your answer.

25. Would you rather sprint write for 10 minutes…or edit for an hour?

Sprint write!

26. Would you rather add a plot twist…or have a full resolution in your WIP?

I’d love a full resolution. Can’t leave plot holes and loose ends hanging about.

27. Would you rather write with a cup of coffee…or a glass of wine?

Wonderful! Two beverage options that I absolutely detest! Seriously…why doesn’t anyone like tea?

Or rum…Rum is also preferable.

28. Would you rather finish your WIP for Camp Nanowrimo…or set your own goal to keep?

I set my own goal because I dislike pressure.

29. Would you do a 20 minute sprint write and post your word count?

Wowsies…I’m really upping my game today.

…….

Word Count: 420

30. Would you rather rewrite your entire camp project…or start with a fresh and new idea?

Oh my word I think I’d combust if I had to rewrite the entirety of Project Amber. I might as well just start with a fresh and new idea.

31. Would you rather share your word count for the month…or share a GIF of your current mood?

MOOD:

mood.gif


Thanks for reading! See you in my next post and whatever you do, keep on writing!

xx

Open-Ended Questions

I’ve always liked to look into people’s houses.

Ask anyone that spends time with me in a car ride. When the music is down low and I’m off staring through the raindrops on my window, you can be sure my eyes are trained on wherever the light shines.

On that perfect christmas tree wondering how long it took the family to put it together…and if they fought over who got to put the star on top.

On the crusty fireplace with wood still stacked high although it’s the middle of July.

On the tv left on with nobody watching, on the silhouettes in what looks like the kitchen, limbs dancing in evangelical delight as they tell the craziest story.

I sit in wonder. Wonder about all the stories I will never get to hear and all the living, breathing beings that materialize as open-ended questions when they pass me by. I wonder about how we as human beings have such a strong desire to connect. I wonder if that’s because there’s so little we know about each other. With every new fact you learn about your best friend, there’s a billion other facts about a billion other people I don’t even know exist.

But that’s the source of all our energy isn’t it? The sense of thrill that accompanies the ignorance. The freedom to supply your own answer with the possibility that the real one could be a million times more interesting…or commonplace.

Maybe after a long winded ten hours, a family of four hauled that tree from the forest and finally fit it into their living room….or maybe a Walmart employee delivered it to their doorstep.

Maybe that fireplace has a mythical legend behind it, beseeching the superstitious owner of the house to leave the wood stocked lest they face an eternal winter…or maybe there’s a stressed single parent inside who can just never seem to find the time.

And why is the TV playing to the empty couch? Was the couple watching suddenly dragged out the backdoor by a couple of rogue IRS officers?…Or did the family dog step on the remote again?

The best thing about these questions is that I don’t have the answer. Every new house I pass is a new adventure and a reminder that stories never end. That’s why I look into people’s houses because although I see them for only seconds at a time, the ideas they spark are forever. And nothing is more inspiring than an open-ended question.