sleep inside of this machine

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my friend Kevin recently shared this most accurate article on Brand New’s The Devil and God are Raging Inside Me, a record that at nearly twenty-nine years of age, I still can’t shake. you can read the article here.

Ryan Bassil’s words penetrated my thoughts and set my wheels turning. I’m pretty thankful for that considering I’ve had plenty to say and no real inspiration to say it. I vividly remember purchasing the CD a few months after my dad passed away; I would sit in my car for hours, looping that record until my ears couldn’t bear the weight of the words. I’d fall to sleep with “Jesus/Jesus Christ” on repeat and wake up to “Welcome to Bangkok.” I really couldn’t get enough no matter how much it hurt me to listen to it. The entire thing blends, echos and separates so much love, loss and pain. It’s still hard for me to listen to it (but I do.)

This notion got me thinking: what else do we cling to in this way? My initial response to Kevin was the idea that I connected to and rejected the record every time I listened to it, and it’s true. But why? What else do we treat this way?

I’ve spent the better part of this Brand New morning talking over coffee with friends,  in seemingly distant reflection, and it may have just served me more than I realized. That tends to happen when we aren’t really paying attention. Personal reflection is luxury I don’t often take these days because I’m never quite sure what I’m going to find there. Maybe that’s why I’ve avoided my voice here for so long because I’m not sure what will come out. Today, I’d like to sing.

In regards to the record, and the time it landed in my hands, I’d surpassed “teenage angst” and launched full-fledged in to “mad at the world.” Brand New’s 2003 record, Deja Entendu was really what fueled all of my wildly out of control emotions all through high school; there’s just something about listening to that kind of poetry. It’s inspired me to write similarly nearly every time I sit down to write.

I’m not sure if those sort of innate things ever go away, but perhaps, change shape and intention. I’m still slightly angry at the world, especially now with all of the extra hate and violence and general heartlessness, but my will to do something about it has stemmed and blossomed.

Bringing back focus to my actual point with this random ramble: Do songs ever leave us? Does anyone else believe that they shape who we are? The way we communicate? Let me hear your thoughts; mine are everywhere.

 

 

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I don’t give a fck about football.

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The weather is crispy, leaves are falling and there is a slight breeze outside. You love the weather, the feel of fall’s arrival. You’ve eagerly swapped your summer short-shorts for autumn attire: sweaters, boots, scarves…and jerseys.

I’m sorry, but who looks good in a football jersey besides your mega-hot boyfriend and ACTUAL FOOTBALL PLAYERS? Nobody, that’s who.

I don’t care if you say you love it, there is no way in hell that you actually enjoy listening to a room full of dudes scream at the TV like the players can actually hear them. All of the couch-coaching that happens is enough to make me want to blast Celine Dion through headphones, shove my head through a wall and never come out. (The boys will be tortured soon enough by CD performing at half-time. Her once perfect-pitch has flown south for the rest of forever. Sorry, mom.)

Now, I will admit that some of the tastiest creations that have come out of my kitchen have been athletic-event based because large group meals are just easier to prepare, in my mind; it’s the southern, slightly-Cajun girl in me I suppose. My need to feed large crowds helps me overlook the thirteen sweaty, screaming dudes in the living room, and their miserable girlfriends, wives and baby-mamas that are sprawled out all over my living room, trying to look enthusiastic in matching monogrammed dresses, tanks and tops. Really? Ladies, you’re telling me that as soon as your feet hit the ground on a gorgeous Saturday or Sunday morning, your first thought is who the Rangers are going to slaughter today? Wait, that’s base-hockey, right? See, I know the things.

I just felt like I needed, nay deserved, to fuss about this. I have tried to care about football for years. I have made more crock pot chilies, seven-layer dips, wings, nachos etc etc etc than I could possibly count; football food is delicious, I will admit to that. I love the freedom it gives you to just binge-eat crappy food because it’s traditional to do so. I have housed a many a hungry man for LSU/Saints vs. Whoever games and have taken groceries out of my refrigerator to fill it with shitty, cheap beer. I figured I owed it to myself to at very least record my football woes for posterity – and perhaps other women who hate the five months of football we dispassionately endure.

I like athletics, I do. I enjoy going to a sporting event and cheering on the preferred team – baseball is actually my favorite, basketball and hockey following after. I just don’t understand why it’s so consuming…there are SO many other things to be excited about.

I mean seriously, the only memorable football event I recall was that one time I got blasted on Fireball at a bar in the French Quarter and did the Single Ladies dance in front of a larger than life projector. Beyoncé was the half-time show and I wanted to dance along….I’m really happy no one thought to take out their phone and record, though I could have been a YouTube sensation by now. FCKING FOOTBALL.

Other things to be excited about:

Example A: I am currently in rehearsal for one of the coolest shows I’ve ever been in. Its historical fiction and dryly hilarious, but do you see people getting hyped up over the arts like the Super Bowl or local jamboree? (how stupid is that? you’re literally capitalizing the words super and bowl…this sounds more like a competition on who could smoke the most pot the fastest.) No, no one gets excited about theater and that’s a shame. I’m really trying to keep this from turning in to a rant about how the arts aren’t supported, but I’m not sure if I can.

Side note: How are Super Bowl Commercials better than regular commercials? I don’t watch much TV but I still don’t get it.

Example B: Live music. You’re trying to convince me with your indoor fireworks and half-naked girls on the sidelines that FOOTBALL is better than seeing someone beat the shit out of the drums, while a guitar wails some sick solo? I’m sorry, but I’m not buying it. 99.9% of musicians are better looking, even more talented with their hands and oh I’m sorry…don’t beat their wives and get away with it. Win, win, win.

Maybe I’m slightly jilted because I had no promise of any sort of athletic career. Maybe I just hate how I don’t understand the rules or why it’s necessary to throw a flag on the field after someone breathes. Maybe I’m just jealous because I was supposed to be a famous athlete’s future ex-wife. I don’t know. Either way, I hate football and will just hide behind the egg rolls and salsa until it’s all over.

seriously, shut up.

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WARNING: this post will be extremely whiny and rant-y but I have to get it all down before I pop.

I can’t seem to turn my brain off this week. I’m honest to God irritating myself at this point because I can’t shut my thoughts down long enough to breathe. I am obviously an over-thinker, this is a fact that I can’t escape; but shit. This is getting out of hand for me this week. I’d really reached the loveliest, serene place…then WHAMMO! Insecurities showed up and they weren’t invited.

In the past week, I’ve spent time constantly making lists for work stuff and things I need for my new place. “Do the board members want pretzels with their grapes for the meeting? Should I get cheese? I like that lamp, but is it going to work next to my laundry basket? Maybe I should get a new laundry basket.” I’ve made grocery lists, double checking all the way to make sure it’s following Paleo guidelines as closely as possible – let’s be honest here, there is no way in hell I’m giving up peanut butter or cheese. I’ve made pros and cons lists for all kinds of crap: that song, those jeans, that guy. “Should I do Paleo? Well, when should I send that text? How should I respond to that? Is that appropriate?” I mean seriously…my thoughts will not stop. I really want to tell my subconscious to just shut the hell up.

I’ve worked on The Anchor then flipped over to working on The Bridge, desperately trying to ensure that the sequel will be equally as satisfying as the first. So, this of course means more lists. Lists of the who-what-where-when-why of Walter and Bridget’s romance. Lists of poignant things they each said to each other, or specific thoughts they had. At one point, when my eyes crossed and I realized I had to be at work in four hours I swear I banged my head against my head-board and bellowed, “SERIOUSLY, SHUT UP!” in my best Emma Thompson.

I had a semi-panicky moment this morning because I was unsure of where I left my guitar. MY FREAKING GUITAR, you know that large instrument you hold and make beautiful sounds with? I couldn’t even remember what I’d done with it. I’m quite sure I thoroughly pissed Brittany off this morning when I sent a text at 7 a.m. sharp asking her if I’d left it where we practice. – which, side note: I was frustrated with everything I played last night. Nothing sounded good to me, nothing felt right. I was unhappy at rehearsal for the first time in forever. WHAT IS HAPPENING TO MY BRAIN?! Who am I?! 

I’ve recently cut down to two (okay, sometimes/mostly three) cups of coffee. I don’t make a pot at home because my roommate doesn’t drink it and I don’t see the point if no one is going to share it with me. Coffee should be shared, damn it! I haven’t had the shakes or anything, but I feel like something is missing chemically in my body. Caffeine addiction is real.

Thanks to the Noah-and-the-Ark sized flood of insecurities this week, I have been more introspective for the last twenty-four hours because I cannot handle feeling this way, and I think I’ve drawn a most honest conclusion. Perhaps, this is due to how busy my evenings have been this week – a problem I am not complaining about in the slightest, but I haven’t had time to get my evening yoga in and I swear it throws my balance off (no pun intended, this time.) I had a great vinyasa Monday morning, and half-assed practiced on Tuesday because I was flat beat. Jared (the roomie) asked to see my, “yoga stuff,” and I happily obliged, though I didn’t do anything but show him a few poses and talk to him about why I love it. I told him about how I love the practice so much because I discover different things about my mind and body every time I hit the mat. I like finding out which asanas are easier for the right side of my body versus the left, and vice versa. I like observing what happens where my thoughts tend to go when I’m trying balances over where my mind wanders when I’m in down-dog or in one of the Warrior poses. I know I was very gushy, in general, about how yoga (for me) isn’t only about challenging my body, it’s about healing my mind.

So maybe that’s it? Maybe the reason why my brain has been in full over-analyze mode is because my thoughts haven’t had any place to go? I didn’t realize the one-year anniversary of my daily (4-6 times a week) practice. I’ve been side-planking and Ujjayi breathing for a solid year now, and on occasion for years before that. It’s amazing what happens when that is subtracted from the day…I knew the practice has extreme effects on me but I had no idea how much. Just a few days without it and my brain (and body) are in complete over drive.

Hopefully when I’m on my mat this evening and my crazy lists and insecurities start blabbing, my calm inner yogini will politely, quietly breathe, “seriously, shut up.”

here’s a bunch of crap you need to know about being friends/dating an over-thinker. I’m already stressing out about whether or not you’ll read it. Maybe I’ll make another list of things to read while you’re stressed.

http://www.puckermob.com/relationships/12-things-you-need-to-know-before-dating-an-overthinker#close

electric feel

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every now and then, I get transported to a different place. Writing makes this easy, because I literally go to wherever it is I’m writing about in my mind; in The Anchor, that’s Beulah, South Carolina. There, I’m surrounded by big, fluffy green trees and wide open, beautiful fields for as far as the eye can see. While there, I can also hit the beach, grab a great cup of coffee from Tamp&Grind (which is amazingly no different from my everyday life – I love when that happens,) or hop on a jet-ski and zip around the beach while catching a great tan. I love that about writing, it’s one of my favorite feelings ever. If you ever read this blog, you know that I have similar feelings for yoga – I’m completely obsessed with how it makes me feel while I’m doing it and afterwards. I’m completely convinced that it’s healing powers are real. – I know, I’m very gushy and reflective about the things I love. I can’t help it; so let me have a moment to talk about how in love with my drums I am.

I play several instruments, but percussion is my favorite. There’s just something about being behind a great big drum set and going to town. It’s loud, it’s tangible. I can move around a little, really groove back there. I like slapping a bass around every now and then or playing something soothing on my acoustic, but duuuuuuuuude, drums are where it’s at for me. I’ve been dabbling with an electric kit lately, since that’s what was available (with reasonable volume,) but it’s just not the same. I have missed playing on my own set so bad. I have Zildjian titanium cymbals that are super bitey and  really, really loud…I love them. Nothing sounds quite like my own bass drum either, there’s just something about the way it kicks; nothing fits me like that set, it’s my set. I feel like it was made for me and I don’t think I appreciated that more until last night. A girl reunited with her own drum kit, now that’s a real love story. I was positively dripping with happiness.

While everyone else was glued to their televisions watching the Super Bowl, I was jamming with two exceptionally talented friends. Friends who are Pepsi people (gasp!), which hurts my soul, but friends nonetheless. Brittany has worked tirelessly lately on original stuff, which is beyond impressive and lovely (I can’t wait to share!) but we were kind of just playing around, having a good old-fashioned jam sess and ended up blasting Don’t Let Me Down by The Beatles for a good seven minutes. When I say that I’m pretty sure that my soul left my body and was flying around the pool-house, I’m not kidding.  We all got lost at one point and it was nothing shy of electric feel-good vibes. I was in heaven, seriously so blissed out. I STILL FEEL IT TODAY. It’s like the best sex I’ve ever had with free pizza and beer and a foot-rub from a babe-guy all rolled in to one, but better. I’ve been so smiley today and feeling so good on the inside. “Music makes you feel,” was the understatement of the night.

I won’t ever get over how much playing loud, live music feeds my soul. I don’t need an electric kit, just give me that electric feel.

your time is gonna come.

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Hello, Wednesday. I’m happy to be spending this workday feeling much better than I did this weekend. My entire office was plagued by the flu it seems, and of course it got me on the one weekend I wanted to spend writing. I don’t have much to report, except that I am fever-free AND! that a true babe, that just so happens be a fellow writer/blogger nominated me last week for the Versatile Blogger Award (exciting! even though it took me forever to see it)

Addison, http://chocolatenchaturangas.com/, (an awesome blog with sweet reads) I stole this part from you:

The Rulesvba

1. Link the person who nominated you

2. List seven facts about yourself

3. Nominate 15 other blogs

Okay, so here you are, the ever intrigued reader that wants to know seven super (ha!) interesting facts about yours truly; so, without further ado….

1. My favorite color is grey/gray – I interchange the spelling depending on when I’m using it, and my reasoning for it has absolutely nothing to do with anything (isn’t that the best sentence you’ve ever read?). It pairs nicely with yellow, white, black and cobalt blue, so its perfect. It IS the perfect neutral. (also, goes nicely with my blue eyes when I wear it.)

2. I was adopted at almost-age two, from the Women’s Hospital in Baton Rouge. I lucked out with incredible older parents that shaped me in to the odd-ball blonde girl you casually read every now and then. My mom is also adopted and works for CASA – we’re just two non-profit, children loving gals trying to change the world.

3. I play six instruments (in the order in which I learned them): piano and guitar – simultaneously as my parents couldn’t agree which one to start me on – bass guitar, cello, violin (no matter how mediocre) and the drums. I am completely crazy about the piano even though it frustrates the hell out of me and I feel super hippy-dippy-happy when I play the guitar, but my absolute favorite, my love….is the drums. I was born to play percussion – it’s loud, so I guess its befitting a gal like me.

4. I haven’t finished college yet, but when I do, I will have a degree in English (language/lit,) a degree in theatre and three minors: philosophy, photography and history. I figured out WAY too late that college wasn’t for me, and I owe it to myself to finish since I only have twenty-one hours left. *though I would like to make a note that you don’t have to have a degree to consider yourself intelligent.

5. I get super emotional when I hear the National Anthem or when I see a giant American flag waving in the wind. I HAVE NO IDEA WHY. My dad was the patriotic one in our house, not me. Maybe it’s because I watched nothing but WWI & WWII movies, Civil War documentaries and the history channel nonstop from the time I could walk until he passed away. Regardless, I have a strong sense of patriotism and it often makes me cry like a baby.

6. Though I am extremely extroverted, I am equally as introverted. It doesn’t take much to make me happy and I don’t require many people in my life or a large audience – no matter how much I feed off the energy when I have one.

7. I would elaborate on the coffee bit, but most of you – if you’ve read any of my posts – know how obsessed with coffee I am. I would like to further define this: I am a beverage person. Coffee, Jameson and water being the favorites, but I’m really fond of anything that will wet my whistle; I prefer it to food. Is that weird?

I’d like to nominate these blogs ( I am only selecting ten. it’s a good number):

Creative Talents Unleashed

irtfyblog

Doug Warren

Goddess in the Belly

Oneika’s Yoga Life

Kendall F. Person

Shithead Central

Girl in the Hat

The Homegrown Hippie

Cristian Mihai

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Now for what’s been on my mind in the last 120 hours –

I take a community yoga class at the local art museum; I think I’ve mentioned this before – it is a beautiful and inspiring place to practice. It really gets me out of my element as I usually practice in my room at my mom’s house (not for long! scored my own place last week with my kickass roommate Jared and I can’t wait to move in! yay!) I like my at-home practice, but I think it puts me in a rut sometimes, or shortens my session and I really don’t like that. I’ve come to understand that I need a solid hour of asana, sometimes additional and definitely fifteen minutes of meditation following, if not more. Thankfully, on Tuesdays when I’m at the gallery, I get exactly what I need….ten fold.

I wasn’t really willing to go to class last night. I was drained, exhausted from fever and being sick over the weekend and REALLY pooped from work, even though it was a mild day at the office. I get really, really sad when I’m sick, I’m not sure why. Something in my chemical makeup I suppose; it puts me in a mental funk that’s hard for me to get out of and it’s miserable. Fortunately for me, I am a firm believer of keeping plans and I’d told my best friend (who is actually more like my sister) that I would be there, and she was bringing another one of our friends – I just couldn’t cancel, regardless of how hit-by-two-trains-twice I was feeling. It wasn’t just the plans I had made though that pushed me to go, there was something in my body encouraging me. Subconscious saying, “yep, you feel and look like total shit but get it together and get on the mat.” So I clocked out at five, made the block from my building to the Alexandria Museum of Art, swapped my heels for my bare feet and headed upstairs.

I am ever glad that I did. That was not only the practice my body wanted, it was the practiced I needed. It’s amazing what happens when we tune in to what our body wants – it delivers what we need, whether we know it or not. I think I smiled the entire time; I know I left feeling happier than I had in a week. My body felt better – my ears finally opened up and my head cleared, my heart felt light. All of the tension that the fever had left in my muscles was gone, it felt amazing. So I know I’m gushing here, but I also hit a new high point in my practice, I got on my head and let go of fear. Though I didn’t get into a full head stand, I put my head down to the earth, closed my eyes and just….let go. I couldn’t tell you much aside from that, except that I didn’t feel afraid, I felt happy. It encouraged me to try to start slowly easing my way in to a head stand in my next practice and I will. A second, welcomed feeling came when we were doing half moon pose. I brought both of my hands back to my mat to regain balance and pressed as hard as I could and ya know what? I finally felt like my legs were going to float up! I don’t know if it was the headspace I was in or if I’m getting stronger, but I welcomed this floaty feeling and can’t wait for it to happen again. I don’t know if anyone heard my squeal with delight or if that was in my own head, but that feeling….seriously nothing better.

Sometimes you have a really good Tuesday, with a really great practice with really great friends and it’s perfect and awesome and you think the day can’t get better. Then it does –

I talked with my friend Mike last night for an hour last night about how happiness is a choice; it’s a choice in everything we do, in every decision we make. I know it’s a super crunchy, kitschy way of looking at things but I don’t care. I spent all of last year in a semi-miserable mood and ya know what, it zapped me of all the happiness I could have had. So, for 2015 I made the executive life decision to be happy every day. I know, you’re rolling your eyes, but I’m serious; even if it’s just for five freaking minutes, happy, every damn day of the week. Life is too short to carry around aggravation or anger or judgement. It’s too short to worry about what he thinks or what she said or what’s going to happen. Happiness is your choice. You can’t blame someone else for lack of happiness or what goes wrong, because at the end of it, its your own fault if you chose something else.

We’re given one challenge every day and that is to live. Lets do that. Lets take care of our bodies and be healthy and happy and see what happens.

“2015 resolution? F*ck that. How about a revolution – happiness.”

Your time is gonna come…and its right now.

P.S.

Check this other blog about happiness. I dare you.

Why You Don’t Have the Balls to Be Happy.

darlin’, you release me

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I can’t help but ramble about a few things today, so bear with me.

First of all, about my round of drinking Friday night….

I had such a blast. Started out celebrating with my sweet mom and step-dad to congratulate my mom going back to work with CASA – if you don’t know what that is look it up: http://www.casa.com

I loved toasting to her, celebrating success in her professional life; she’s the new director for CASA in another parish now and she’s seriously over the moon. While I know she enjoyed the work she was doing at her old job, I know her heart is in this more; non-profit work just runs in our blood. So we’re drinking and being merry, a good time indeed. Except that my mom can drink faster than me; when did this happen? “Well, I’m thirsty!” She’s so cute and giggly after two drinks – give her three and you’re practically peeing in your pants from the entertaining things she says.

I think I was on drink three when I received a text from my friend Jared asking if I wanted to go out and it took me a minute, but I subconsciously said, “what the hell, why not?” and replied, “YES!” I’d had a semi-trying work week and knew I could use the relief of getting out of the house and out-and-about in town. Annnnnnnd, I selfishly wanted to show off my new hair – yes new hair, again. Thirteen inches total gone since Thanksgiving and I want to cut more! I just can’t stop.

Jared tells me he’ll be around to scoop me up at 10…AT TEN! Holy smokes, I am old. I instantly regretted saying yes – my bed time is solidly at 10-1030 EVERY night of the week, usually even Saturdays. Thoughts of my soft pillows and warm blankets began to creep in…but no, “NO!” I told myself. “You are going to put your damn face on and have a great time.” And that’s exactly what I did. I had a marvelous time drinking with friends I haven’t seen in ages, that we randomly ran in to; I love this, the holidays seem to breed it. I loved every minute of talking to Jared about all kinds of things and solving the world’s problems, one Jameson at a time. I loved shoveling Taco Bell in my face at 1:00 in the morning and having my mom look at my like I was a crazy person. But here is what I learned from my Friday night of loving life:

I can’t handle my liquor quite like I did when I was 20-23. I didn’t get sick but my entire body felt like someone had pushed me down twelve flights of stairs all day the next day.

Taco Bell now gives me heartburn. WHAT THE HELL. I once was able to order one of everything on the menu (a semi-exaggeration but not much of one. Cheesy-gordita-crunch, anyone?) without batting an eyelash – and it never made me sick.

I used to be the cute, half-naked girl, sitting in the freezing cold outside of the bar in nothing but a spaghetti strap, sparkly top and jeans with heels, screeching, “no, I’m not cold at all I sweeeeeeeaaaaaar.” Even though my nipples could cut glass. Now, I am wrapped in scarves and tunics that go down to my knees and I fuss about whether or not my crotch is covered, because, “I literally just can’t.”

I still haven’t mastered the art of making myself take off all my makeup. I get as far as taking my contacts out and I’m totally exhausted. Then I look in the mirror when I inevitably wake up, four hours later when my stupid, awful, hateful, mean-spirited internal alarm clock goes off and shudder at my appearance: mascara smeared all over the place and my eyelashes are plastered together; tis not a pretty sight.

I still have a solid regime in the morning that I have believed in and sworn by for years:

A coke, or the like, first thing when you wake up. – that Dr. Pepper was bliss in a can at 5:15am on Saturday, let me tell you. If I’m so lucky to fall back asleep (for what? another 45 minutes, maybe?) orange juice is next. Then a small glass of milk. I don’t care how much you hate milk, drink it. It coats your stomach and almost instantly gets rid of the queasy, bubbly tummy you’ve probably got. Throw in some Goody’s (similar to BC powder) and you’re right as rain. (along with washing the schmere off of your face and brushing your teeth, for Heaven’s sake.)

I somehow managed to survive a round of Christmas food shopping in Lafayette with my family the next day. I’d call that a Christmas win.

Oh, to be nearly twenty-seven and still figuring it out.

Speaking of figuring it out….

Connecting, re-connecting and disconnecting with people in your life can be so inspiring. I love when those things just happen to happen – do you know what I mean? I am relishing being at an age where I don’t give a damn what people think. I can be friends with whomever I choose and disconnect myself from anyone, anything. I genuinely believe this is extremely healthy. It takes so much willpower to walk away from negative people/situations/things in your life. Do you have any idea what kind of confidence comes from being able to make those decisions? Decisions to leave someone behind, to walk away; or having the guts to admit you were wrong and say, “I’m sorry.” – AND MEAN IT. Its freaking liberating.

That doesn’t mean that walking away or saying goodbye doesn’t still sting. But knowing that you’re making conscious, healthy decisions for yourself, that’s really something yall. Be proud of that person; embrace it.

Its Real

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Well folks, I’m about to put finishing touches on part one of The Anchor. I can’t believe I’m done with it already! Mark printed off a hard copy of part one for me on Thursday and I zipped through it. I have the book practically memorized…even though I still laugh out loud at some of the things that made it through the first draft.

All that is left is to read through part two in print and make changes to that, then off to be edited. Thank you Codi R. in advance for agreeing to do it for me!

And then the query letter/manuscript submitting begins.

I’ve researched for weeks….reading blogs, articles and essays on,”How to Wow a Book Agent with Your Query Letter.” (A personal proposition from writers to the mags, agencies, etc.) I have yet to be impressed, and I think its because some of the examples I’ve skimmed over lack passion and truth. I have no strategy here, and I hope my honesty about that is what impresses the world of publication. My courage is separate from my nerves though….I am throw-up nervous to have anyone besides my friends read it.

It could suck for all know, but everyone has been extremely nice about it, so onward I go.

I am so unbelievably proud of where I’m at as a writer, and I cannot wait to learn and grow more. I know I say it all the time, but thank you to the many many many lovely friends I’ve bugged to read every draft of each part at least three or four time. Seriously, thank you. My characters wouldn’t be the same without all of the input!

It’s all real, right here at my fingertips.

Remember that everything is within your reach.