Monday, June 27, 2011

Writing Is…

I’m not sure where this meme began or if I’ve even done this right, but I’ve been tagged by @WookieStyle to write something that explains what Writing is to me. Here is my attempt at clearing that up. (Probably about as clear as a barrel of mud! LOL)

Writing is… my vent, my voice, my place to focus… my nightmare, my struggle, my inner angst… Where shall I begin and how shall I end?

All my life I’ve loved to write or do something, anything creative. As a child, I drew a lot. I’d sit in classes and draw some kick ass trucks and cars, as well as beautiful landscapes and houses. I loved colors too and enjoyed losing myself in coloring books. Through Jr. High and High School, I learned some typography and shading, so I made a lot of headlines.

Later, I became a homeschool teacher and began to teach our boys to read, write, do arithmetic, etc. I realized then that I would need to teach them to write various forms of poetry, literature, and reports as they grew up. I gave them a project to write a story through the whole school year, each day writing a little more to go in their stories. They easily wrote out a chapter a day, which really consisted of one page or so for their ages… but by the end of the year, they realized they created a creative story with their own world on the page. Their stories were mostly of aliens from other planets. My boys love to tell stories, so I turned their energies of telling them to writing them.

A few years after starting our homeschool, my husband lost his job and spent months trying to find more work. I had been learning how to write HTML code for building websites and was getting good at the basics. It was another means for me to create and I loved it. So, I decided that I would trade my skill for karate lessons to help the instructor with his website. I found that I loved creating websites and using the Internet as a way of showing off my art. Soon, my business began to bloom and I was working my butt off building websites. All of a sudden, I’m not enjoying it as much because the creativity part was less a part of the website, and the mechanics and technical parts became more of a necessity.

About three years ago, I stepped into Twitter and blog writing. I started reviewing books I’d read and movies I’d seen, thinking nothing of my writing ability but received feedback from followers on how well I wrote. One day, a Twitter friend asked me to proofread her stories that she had written. In so doing, I began to wonder if I could benefit from writing.

At this point in time though, my creative venue was leaning more toward Photoshop. I had decided to revamp my blog and try to give it a new direction. I touched upon an idea for a banner that would really symbolize the theme of my blog. On this one particular day, I was in my shower, where all great ideas come to me, when this idea popped in my head. As I stood there thinking about how to create this banner in Photoshop, it became alive in my mind. (No, I hadn’t taken hallucinogens.) The characters began to talk and show emotion. I found that I could move around the image in my head and describe what I saw, smelled, and touched in my mind. I found that the main character in my head was talking to me and telling me her story. I sat for hours that day, typing out everything I saw and heard. I sent it over to one of my best friends and asked her to read it and give me her opinion. I was so afraid she’d laugh and tell me I should stop smokin’ whatever it was I was smoking, but she didn’t. She wrote back all excited, “Tell me more! I can’t wait!” The next day, the same thing happened and all I could do was write what flowed. I’ve been writing ever since.

Writing is my outlet to calm myself down, or explode and voice an opinion. It’s my way of venting my emotions when I’m having a tough day. It’s my way to escape. Writing is a way for me to create -- people, emotions, worlds, and much more. I love words! I love describing ideas and analogies so that your mind begins to see what’s in my mind.

Fumbling through my garage, I searched for a story that I started years ago. I thought, now that the juices were flowing perhaps I could finish it. I never found that story, but I found oodles of journals that I would buy, write in and then lose track of, only to buy another and do the same. Apparently, writing has always been my way of working things out. I would write what was in my head, to calm the proverbial voices, and then move on. Now, I am working at completing one of my many stories.

Next step… I just need the courage to publish!

Hmm, whom should I tag?







Sunday, June 26, 2011

“Unbearable Lightness: A Story of Loss and Gain,” by Portia de Rossi

Reading this book was a total skew from the genre of books I normally read. What brought me to read this book was more of a general interest in how the author, Portia de Rossi, overcame two very strong concepts in her upbringing that she had to learn to accept in her life.

Before I chose to read this book, I read reviews on the book itself. The reviews were either good or poor, nothing really in the middle. I chose to go by the reviews that gave a good light on this book and now that I’ve finished reading it, I’m glad I did.

Reading “Unbearable Lightness: A Story of Loss and Gain,” was touching, honest, & heart wrenching as we followed Ms. de Rossi’s life & her reasoning for the decisions made in her life. There are many people in the same place as Ms. de Rossi, choosing to live by society’s standards & not accepting how they were born. I am one who has had trouble accepting myself, perhaps not in the same way as Ms. de Rossi, yet just as painful. Reading this book helped me to look deep within myself and evaluate my choices. Many of my own choices were made based on my understanding of what was expected of me from family, friends, and my Christian beliefs. From simple decisions such as, how I vote to whom I accept into my social circles. As a child, and even into my adult years, I found ways to dislike myself and learned ways to be accepted. All it takes is just being you, nothing more and nothing less.

The book, “Unbearable Lightness: A Story of Loss and Gain,” was well written and made you feel as if you were in Ms. de Rossi’s shoes as she went through her life experiences. I appreciated how she shared her experiences, yet didn’t impose her life decisions on her readers. She spoke sensibly and straight to the point. She explained her confusion and her lack of acceptance very clearly. She also shared how love and support from friends and family helped to find her inner strength to succeed.


Saturday, June 11, 2011

“Lover Eternal” by J.R. Ward

Once finishing J.R. Ward’s first book, “Dark Lover,” I had to jump off into the next. “Lover Eternal” is book two in this series, Black Dagger Brotherhood.

As I stated in my review of “Dark Lover,” the Black Dagger Brotherhood series, written by J.R. Ward, is about an ancient order of warrior vampires who defend and protect their race from vampire slayers known as lessers. These lessers are de-souled humans, recruited by an evil supernatural being known as the Omega. There are six warriors in the Brotherhood who stand between the extinction of their vampire race and the Lessening Society.

In this series, the author creates a vampire race, which is separate from the human race. In fact, to be a vampire, one must be born with vampire DNA. Vampires are born like humans, looking like humans, acting like humans, and in some cases, unaware of the changes the must go through in their mid-twenties, when their bodies go through dangerous changes. Surviving this transition, they must drink the blood of vampires of their opposite sex to survive. Living as vampires, they can drink any blood, human or animal, but to stay strong and live healthy, they must consume the blood of their opposite gender.

In this book, “Lover Eternal,” J.R. Ward brings to life the brother “Rhage,” also known as “Hollywood” to his friends. Rhage is the brother/vampire with the biggest appetite and he seems to be the best fighter of all the brothers. He has a dark side that lives inside him. The Scribe Virgin (the vampiric goddess of sorts), casts a curse on him that is to last two hundred years, a curse that forces him to live his life not feeling love. Sex and violence are his only means to keep the beast within him under control. When Rhage loses control, everyone around him takes cover as his beast bursts out and consumes every thing in sight. One day, Mary comes into his life and Rhage finds that he is drawn to Mary.

Mary is a human who suffers from leukemia again. Through circumstances brought in with other characters connected with Mary’s life, she meets Rhage. He’s handsome, strong, and he’s interested in her. She knows this time she will most likely die from her affliction. So now, she wonders if her life will end happily.

Mary is brave on so many levels. She fights for her on life, gets mixed in with the vampire race because of a secondary storyline within this book, and learns to understand the beast in Rhage.

I loved this story very much and in some ways felt, I could relate to Rhage the most. His constant battle with his own demons and the lack of control of his beast seemed to connect with me in many ways. It seemed that the more he pursued Mary, the more capable he was able to cope with his beast.

This book was a definite page-turner! It was dark with moments of sadness, yet a romantic sensual love story. J.R. Ward cleverly weaves a secondary storyline that introduces the next book in the series.