Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Why I do what I do.

I'm an artist. I dance. I sing. I draw. I write. Everything in my life is about the arts and creating something from my soul. It's never been about a paycheck or fame or whatever. It's just who I am, what I do, how I live.

And it's the scariest thing ever.

Everytime you put something out there, it's a chance not just for someone to reject it, but to reject a little piece of you. It can be hard on your heart. Professionally, it can be pretty thankless. Crazy parents, unappreciative audiences and a long list of "Great job, but not right for me" rejections are always about. Plus the pay... hold on while I dry my eyes. (I'm not sure if the tears are from laughter or weeping.)

So I was having this conversation with one of my business minded friends."How can you work like that? Why do you do it?"

I gave my normal answer. "I love watching children achieve something they couldn't do before. It's amazing to be a part of that."

They looked at me and said, "No, that answers why you work with kids. It doesn't tell me why you bother with writing and dancing."

And they were right. Why do I do it? It's been bugging me for weeks, months at this point. More than once I thought, I'll just quit. But the next day I was back at it. So Why? Why? Why?

Then last night I was driving home from work. My dancers had done awesome and I was excited so I decided to have a sing-along in the car.

Set on shuffle, my iPod pulled up "The House That Built Me" by Miranda Lambert.The words were so powerful.

And it hit me. Like a freaking train. Or like this.

That's why I do what I do. I don't have a brick and mortar that built me. We never lived in a house long enough, or more accurately, none of them felt like a home because of the walls. My home lies with the people I love, but what built me are the things I create.

I have portfolios full of drawings and paintings. I have notebooks of words and a computer full of manuscripts. Thre's barely a song I listen to that I can't say, 'I did a dance/wrote a dance/am writing a dance to this.' I have a closet full of blankets I've made, a home full of art that makes up my world. The things I make are snapshots in time and a road map to me and who I am. But more importantly, why I am and who I have become. There is such release in knowing the answer to the question.

My creativity is the house that built me. And in that powerful revelation, I know why I weather the ups and downs, the personal nature of what I do, and why I can never stop.

Sunday, January 13, 2013

The Break-up

Dear Old Me,

I'm sorry darling, but you have to go. You are a bit lazy and your ability to be my enabler is not helping me. It's definitely you, and not me. I can't go into 2013 and reach my goals with your donut laden hips and pasta filled belly weighing me down. So, here is where we must part ways.

I won't miss you, except on really cold nights when your extra padding kept me warm. It's okay. I have a blanket.

We've been friends for a long time and together-together for a year and you're no good for me. Although you're comfortable and I may want to run back to you sometimes, I won't because I'm better than that and I'm better than you. And the next time you see me, you won't believe the girl I've become. But if it all goes to plan, the only time I'll ever see you in a picture I keep to remind me of what I never want to be again.
                                                                                                           Sincerely, New Me

                                 So there is it - the break-up. Let the normal steps begin.

                                        Obviously step one is the workout plan. Check.

                                             Next - new haircut, doing that in the morning.

                                                                     (So cute, right?)

                                   Third - clean out closet - that's on this afternoon's agenda.

                                                              Fourth - never look back.

As far as last week's goals, I had no donuts or beignets and I worked out five times. I didn't get all my water in but made a vast improvement in getting there. So how did all that hard work and sacrifice get for me when I stepped on the scale - I lost... ZERO pounds! That's right - not one little ounce gone.

For those of you who are thinking and getting ready to comment, but muscle is denser than fat and weighs more. Come see, let me punch you with my fat arm.

But my clothes fit just a little better. And I'm not going to be deterred that easily. Just watch me. I'll get there.

So this week's goals are to workout five times and stay at 1200 calories a day. (I downloaded the MyFitnessPal app to aid in this)

See you back here next Friday with an update on how I'm doing post break-up with my cute new 'do.

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Tag..oh, I'm it. Current WIP info here!

Hey gang. Holy smokes. I have blogged a bunch this week. But one of my lovely CP's tagged me in this blog hop to talk about a current work in progress.

In a nutshell: I'll answer ten questions about my current WIP and below I will tag five other authors who get to post a week after me.

The only thing is... I have no idea which MS to answer questions about...hmmm. I have four things in revision right now. So I let Darci pick and she chose Hemingway, so here you go!

                                                     1. What is the working title of your book?

                                                    THE KEYS ALWAYS IN MY HEART

                                                 2. Where did the idea come from for the book?

I was watching the History channel because I'm the coolest person in the world. It was Natural disaster day and there was a show about the biggest hurricane to ever make landfall in the US. It hit the Florida Keys and Hemingway was there when it did. Ernest Hemingway!!! The plot practically wrote itself.

                                                  3. What genre does your book fall under?

                                                                  Historical romance

                       4. Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?

                         Hemingway - I have no idea. That will take more thinking than I have mind for.

                         Robert - The perfect dream actor for this role would have to be Jackson Rathbone.

                                    Suz - The perfect actress would be someone from the 30's or 40's.
                                                 So the closest I can get it Natalie Portman.

                                      5. What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?

It’s 1935 and Suz lives on The Keys, always awaiting the next big storm, but before the hurricane comes a bigger clash of the heart pulls her between the perfect man and Hemingway.

                                 6. Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?

I have no idea. I really want an agent. But I write a lot. And quickly. So self-pub may be the way to go. Time will tell. 

                              7. How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?

It took me 3 months to write the first draft. I finished most of it in a month. I wrote the hurricane scene while holed up in my house waiting out a real hurricane, so that was poetic. It then took a big ugly crow bar to pry the rest of the words from my brain. But I got it out there. And it was not the hot mess I thought it would be, so that's a win.

                            8. What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?

I'm not sure. It is true historical fiction in that it's about a real event and the facts surrounding that are indeed, facts. and it has a romance, but I haven't read any other books about this storm and Hemingway that were fiction. 

                                             9. Who or What inspired you to write this book?

The History channel special gave me the idea but really the first two people I told about the idea, Sarah and Marieke, said, and I'll quote, "Write it now." So there's that.

                                 10. What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest?

           It's such a lovely piece of history, The Great Gatsby had just come out and prohibition lifted.

                                                          Thanks again Darci for tagging me!

Check out the Writers she tagged with me to post today:

Carey Torgesen
Chessie Zappia

Sarah Blair
Jamie Grey

Here are the authors I tag to post on JANUARY 9th:

Tristina Wright
Jessa Russo
Megan Orsini
Carey Torgesen