Sunday, May 17, 2015

Ironic How No One Will Read This

The older I get, the more I feel like it’s part of my purpose to be nearly entirely alone. I used to have this array of people I talked to and spent time with. I used to be relatively liked and admired by other people. I used to find great enjoyment in sharing my mind with others, and experiencing theirs in turn.. Though as the years have dragged on, and I find myself inching closer to being thirty years old, I’ve learned that no one really cares about anyone else. People are only ever drawn to you because of something they think they can get out of you. Most of the time it’s either money, exposure, or sex. When you provide none of that, people eventually scatter like bugs when you flick on the light. The light of your true intentions.. Which is to know people. To connect with them. Even to love them. No one cares about any of that, and you eventually become old news to everyone you’ve ever met.

When you get closer to thirty, chances are, most of your “friends” are gone, if you have any real convictions or passions in this life. You find you can no longer relate to their incessant bullshit, and the fact that they haven’t matured. The fact that all many of them care about are TV Shows and what time their kid’s soccer practice is. The fact that they think you’re not living in reality because you still have dreams bigger than anything they’ve ever wanted. Eventually, you recede. You stop talking to them. You stop putting in the one-sided effort it always was, because you can finally see that having “friends” is pointless. It doesn’t matter how much love or energy you put in, because you’re tossing everything into a bottomless well, where not even so much as a tarnished penny is ever tossed back up.

I was once stupid enough to believe that people actually gave a damn about what I thought and what I created. I was once foolish enough to think that I got so much recognition because of how much time and effort I put into everything I did. What I failed to recognize was that almost all of the attention was from men. Men who saw me as nothing more than a fresh piece of meat. The attention I did get from women was clouded by their intent to either steal my ideas or use me to get noticed themselves. Sprinkled in amongst the majority were a few people who actually found the things I did intriguing, but they were swallowed up and eventually lost interest themselves. Young and naive, I thought all of those people recognized the soul I put into my work. The depth I injected into my thoughts and writing. I was too ignorant to understand that the majority of those people, being men, only paid attention because I fit some fantasy inside their minds. A decent looking, artistic, eighteen year old they wanted to possess and to defile. Now, at 26, I’m a better writer and artist than I ever was, and no one even so much as tosses a glance.

I don’t want the “recognition”, knowing how disturbing it was all that time. I just find it incredibly sad that in this culture, it doesn’t matter how intelligent or talented you are. The only time I’ve ever had people who actually wanted to follow my work or talk to me was when men saw me as jail bait. Now that I’m clearly a woman, and am producing the best work I’ve ever done, no one cares in the slightest. I go weeks and weeks without so much as a pageview or a single message from someone wondering what I’m up to. I already know that when I release what will be my life’s work, no one will even take the time to notice. Thankfully, such a thing won’t deter me. The reality can sometimes just be difficult to swallow. The reality that the lonely, seventeen year old girl posting pictures of herself in her bedroom will always get far more recognition than the novel I’ve put four years of literal blood, sweat, and tears into.

Sometimes, I hate the internet and want to never be part of it ever again. Then I remember that in this world I live in, the internet is the only chance I have of accomplishing my goal.. Which is to help people who are suffering. With this novel I’m literally writing the last scene of now, I want to help people out of the dark places they may be trapped in. I know that if I can help even just one single person, it will all have been worth it. It will have been worth every second of the pain it took to write it.

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

New Videos : Finding your Motivation and a Poetry Reading!

I made two new videos today! Wearing my lucky poetry reading dress. Actually, that wasn’t intentional.. I only realized I’d worn the same dress after I was already done! Anyway, this first video is a reading of “Fade and Forget”, which is in my poetry book, “Fragments From Nowhere”. It's a rather dark poem, though contrary to how it sounds, it's rather abstract, and not meant to be taken literally.

The second video I made today is about a topic I’ve discussed with several people lately, and have thought a lot about. This of course won’t apply to every artist, but it will to some. Because many artists, including myself, indulge in numerous artistic outlets and hobbies that can distract from what we TRULY want to accomplish. This can create a sense of being unfulfilled, a profound frustration, and chronic procrastination. It's important to fight against being so erratic artistically and devote your time and energy to your most important projects. The ones that create a deep sense of accomplishment, and represent who you truly are as an artist.

Sunday, February 22, 2015

New Chapter / Plus Beautiful Winter Birds!

My life has changed dramatically over the last few months, and it has been truly amazing in almost every way.. Everything I had come to know is now gone, and I have entered an entirely new phase in my life. One I find terribly exciting, and it is truly a massive leap forward. While I don't want to delve into personal specifics, I will say that leaving behind the job, city, and apartment I was in was one of the best decisions of my life, and proved to me that sometimes taking huge chances is worth every bit of doubt you might feel. Sometimes a bad situation can feel "safe" or even "comfortable", but you can't advance when you stagnate, and even when when you have to take on a whole new set of challenges, you still have to dive forward and chase your dreams. It's truly the only way to live, and the experiences I've had these past few months have only made me more confident and happy with myself. Had I been afraid of change, none of it would have happened at all..

I think Winter is getting everyone down this year, especially with how harsh it's been in certain areas. It has been so incredibly cold here that I sometimes wonder how the birds survive such brutal conditions.. Though they always seem as chipper as ever. I think the massive amounts of food they get to eat on this property helps, but they were quite happy to pose for some pictures yesterday! The beauty of the birds can always make you smile, even on a miserable winter day. ♥

Northern Cardinal

Carolina Wren

Red-bellied Woodpecker

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Have a seat, and take a listen..

I'm well aware of the fact that very, very few people will care enough to take the time to listen to even just one of these songs, let alone the whole list.. But I wanted to share my absolute favorite songs to be released in 2014. The albums these songs are taken from are all incredible as a whole, so I suggest buying the album if you enjoy the song presented here. So, without further delay, here are what I consider to be some of the best songs released this year :

Godflesh - "Shut Me Down" from A World Only Lit By Fire

Godflesh, the absolutely legendary, untouchable pioneers of abrasive, "industrial" metal made their crushing comeback this year with what I believe is their heaviest album to date. The entire album is complete perfection to me, but this song has been on repeat a little more than the others. Pulsing, relentless, rough, and undeniably sexy.. Though descriptive words like that are pretty common coming from me when in reference to Godflesh. Regardless, the song is exceptional.

Jakob - "Blind Them With Science" from Sines

Jakob have slowly but steadily risen to become one of my all time favorite bands. Masters of post rock since their 1999 debut album, Jakob have proven once again why they reign supreme within this genre. Theirs is a unique blend of heavy guitar, and unmatched emotional, poignant moments that make their songs unforgettable. "Blind Them With Science" is typical Jakob, but perhaps more polished than their earlier work. As always, moving, heavy, and potently inspiring.

Emma Ruth Rundle
- "Living With The Black Dog" from Some Heavy Ocean

We'll drift now outside of the confines of "rock" and into soloist guitar work, though Emma Ruth Rundle is no stranger to extremely heavy genres, which is why I think her newest solo album is so profound and hard-hitting. This song in particular has really stuck with me since I heard this release. There is a gritty, dark sense of melancholy trapped inside this simplistic track, and it just gets under my skin.

Judd Madden - "Radio & Tone" from Everything In Waves

Judd Madden is my favorite "one man band" of all time. The music he creates is incredibly structured, balanced, and never lacking in moments that blow you away entirely. His new release is absolutely his best, and this song captivated me the most. Not to mention, my Husband Ascending Storm created ten separate paintings for the album, one for each song. Needless to say, this release was beyond epic.

YOB - "Unmask The Spectre" from Clearing the Path to Ascend

YOB are a recent infatuation of mine, and directly after falling in love with Atma, the new album was released. So unlike long-time fans, I almost felt as if the two albums bled directly into one another. The most accurate word to describe YOB's music is power. Mike Scheidt's vocals are some of the absolute best in the entire genre of "metal". Though I wouldn't classify YOB as metal at all. Not even "psychedelic" or "stoner" metal as they're often classified as. They are purely their own entity, and once their music finds its way into your soul it can never retreat. Their music to me is like taking a slow walk through a graveyard, but as you look around, you realize the earth is shaking, and every grave is being torn apart.

Pallbearer - "The Ghost I Used To Be" from Foundations of Burden

I have saved my favorite song/album for last on this list. This album, but perhaps this song the most, has become my favorite release of the year. Pallbearer are a relatively new band, so for them to be this groundbreaking after a few short years is a sign of immense things to come.. This album is, from start to finish, flawless. Filled with emotional, unforgettable moments and thought-provoking lyrics, yet it's also nowhere near lacking in brutal heaviness. What is more, they are phenomenal live. I had the pleasure of seeing them live last October, and it only made my love for this album grow leaps and bounds. They are passionate performers, and truly bring these songs to life. They are one of those bands whose music can't simply be called "music". It is art. I feel the same intensity, brilliance, and emotion in their music that I do in my favorite books and paintings. I'm so elated that I've come to know their music, and got a chance to see them, so early on in their career. I have very high hopes for this band, and I'll be awaiting their next release with bated breath.

Friday, October 17, 2014

On the Precipice

Few people can truly grasp what it feels like to be a fiction writer. Even many fiction writers themselves don’t feel the certain emotions others of us do about their work. For a lot of them, it’s a hobby, something they enjoy, something they even just do for a living.. But then there are other writers who fall into a different category entirely. Not necessarily in talent or skill, but in the way they feel about their work, but more specifically, their characters. I am, unfortunately, one of those writers I’m talking about.

The love I feel for my current protagonist rivals even the love I feel for many real people. The way I feel about him is as though he is a real person. As though he lives and breathes in some other place I can’t get to, and my heart clenches tightly at just the thought of him. Like a fist, and the idea of letting this character go, of never being able to touch him again, makes me want to ram that fist into a concrete wall.

So many people have asked me why this book isn’t yet finished, and I normally use the excuse of laziness, procrastination, or life just being too hectic. While all of those things are true, the main reason is that I don’t want to let him go yet. I want him to stay present. Relevant. Tied to me as a fledgling not yet ready to leave the nest..

That moment when I allow him to fly towards the horizon, it is finished. He will then belong to everyone who will ever meet him inside this story. He is no longer mine then, and I’m still too in love with him to set him free. When I finally do, there will not be a celebration as one might expect. There will be a period where I grieve for the loss of him. Where I listen to songs that remind me of him and weep. It will feel as though I’ve just left an intimate, four year relationship with someone who saturated my mind on a daily basis. It will feel like a loss more than a triumph, and that, more than anything, lets me know that I’ve chosen the right character. I've chosen the story I was meant to write at this time in my life.

Now, as I stand on the precipice of an entirely new life, in a new place, in a new home, I’m glad I was able to spend this period of my life with this character. This period of sheer strife and pain. He was my release, my comfort, and my escape.. I will finish his story just as I enter this new life, and that’s what makes it hurt so damn much. To leave behind the only thing that got me through one of the darkest moments of my life. The beauty of it is that I know there are people who need him more than I do, and I want him to belong to them.

Putting the blood, sweat, and tears into this novel for four years was the easy part..
It’s saying Goodbye that will tear me apart.

Monday, September 1, 2014

The Limitless Reaches of the Earth - Song / Video Collaboration with The Rose Phantom

I had the pleasure of working with Ted Newsom, aka "The Rose Phantom" on an incredible project. Ted is a phenomenal musician, vocalist, and artist, and when he shared this eight minute track with me that he created I was flooded with ideas of my own. I wrote lyrics, and sang the lead vocal on this song. We also came up with ideas for a video, which has turned out better than I imagined! As well as being gifted musically, Ted is also a gifted filmmaker. This is a combined effort where two visions blended together into one explosion of creative energy, and I couldn't be any happier with the result.

Lyrics :

"Bright and gold the sun does burn.
Hot enough to stun the snakes.
Sand and Earth as red as blood.
Sky so blue it heals your heart.

Trees as far as eyes can see.
Light is seen in dots and beams.
Birds will sing from dawn to dusk.
Owls and wolves make night a dream.

Green to red and back again.
Rain to dust and back again.
Free is how you feel out here.
Free from pain and what is real.

Listen now to what you hear :
Desert song that draws you near..
Forest song erasing fear..
Is it what has brought us here?

An expanse of burnt sienna so daunting, it hints to unborn ideas.
A canopy so lush and green, it mends even the most shattered of dreams.

Can you feel the forest of the Soul?
Can you grasp the desert of the mind?
Landscapes so beautiful it hurts.
The limitless reaches of the Earth,
Are mirrored in our own consciousness.
In the way we search for truth.
In the way we reach for love."

View and purchase the track on Bandcamp :

Jeffrey Smith, aka Ascending Storm created an incredible cover image for this track.

Listen to more of Ted's music and see more videos at :
The Rose Phantom Official Website
The Rose Phantom Youtube
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