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Tuesday, June 19, 2012

5 Weeks Tomorrow

Well, tomorrow is five full weeks w/o the you know whats...and I'm cycling down from another rush of anxiety, depression and agitation.  It is a destructive thing, but once you come out of it, you find you're still hear.


iTunes stuff...after bashing through "Girl Anachronism" by the Dresden Dolls (see previous post for the video), I couldn't bear to hear stuff from my old band, Ahltyrra.  "Doctor Brown" by the Original Fleetwood Mac came up...knockoff of Sweet Home Chicago, pretty much.


Okay...we're hitting on five weeks.  The past several days my lack of focus has led to me causing myself more issues than I had at the beginning, isn't that funny?


I'm generally clumsy when cleaning...I'll make more of a mess than when I started, and have to do that, too.  Mindfulness training does not always work when your mind cycles, and you are trying to get things done, and you just plow into everything.


I'm glad for spellchecker...my fingers don't type well, even with years of training.  I took typing before it was fashionable and necessary, and there were few boys in my typing classes, believe me.


Anyway, my fingers don't always adjust to my laptop here, and then they don't go back to the keyboard on my PC, either here or at work.


Crank these normal things up by about 100 times, and you know what I'm dealing with.


"Warboys," Queen/Paul Rodgers...this has been considered a horrid album, and Queen purists hate it.  I do agree that while Freddie could sing some of those songs, some are not fitting with him.  But Freddie's dead...the other guys have a right to do music, damn it.  I think some of the songs are very good.


I managed to kill my PC; well, it was having its own issues, and I compounded the error by inserting the wrong reclamation disk.  Guess what happened.


I got it back last night, not from the Geek Squad (losers) who left numerous things unplugged from the last time (NO WONDER MY HEADSET MIC DIDN'T WORK, AND I COULD NOT HEAR A FUCKING THING...THANKS, LOSERS!); there's a local chain that for very little money worked it up.


Of course, I tried to plow ahead and re-fix things that I wanted on there, to which nothing occurred right.


Alice is coming tomorrow to fix it up, and get it to run the way it should, so I can do my writing, my on-line stuff, and my new endeavor eventually.


Also have to hope we can save the iTunes.  I'm running off my laptop account, which is not the same, thanks to the Cloud issues.


"Suspicion," by Asia.  Arena rock time, folks!


My iPod has all the music uploaded that had once been on the PC...now, can we transfer it from the unit to the computer w/o losing it all and starting all over again?


The worst can happen...it often does.  But that is a habit I must quit on.


The writing thing is also troubling me...I feel it very hard to trust certain people, where it is concerned.  


To explain:  the first book of the Sweet Dreams Series is being worked by my agent.  There has been some interest, but no deals.  Two publishers are looking at it, but I'm not sure what they think.


Then all of a sudden, out of nowhere came a request for the manga portion.  Two point five years after approaching, they're back...well, I have had to again push my collaborators to provide me something.


I can't go into all that.  Suffice to say, Jen has provided some pencil sketches that look quite interesting.  There'll be more, plus my six-page proposal outlining the grand scheme.


Well, that is almost ready; a little more to add.


They want to see it, now.


A bit of "Karn Evil 9," from a live ELP recording of some 20 years ago.  So we're getting this together...and here comes the paranoia.


This was sent to me by Alice:  http://indiereader.com/2012/06/how-amazon-saved-my-life/


Very tempting, to just cut loose, but then I have the contract with my agent, the issues surrounding it, and the possibilities of all that could go wrong.


The mainspring inside me gets tight...real tight.


"Dirty Little Thing," Velvet Revolver.  Yes!  Feels just like that!


I see it all going to shit, even though I know this will not happen.  I've not signed any rights away; no one has taken anything yet.  AND THEY WILL NOT.


Here's the thing that pisses me off about traditional publishers.  They, like record labels and TV execs, look for what fits a market.  But they don't always know.


The author of the above, Jessica Park is right:  WRITERS WRITE FOR THE READERS, NOT FOR A PUBLISHER.


You want another fucking knockoff of Twilight, do you?  Just look at your slushpile; there must be a hundred of them there!  Who cares if one of them sucks balls, the stupid people will buy them.


And they do.


Record labels sign their version of the NEXT BIG THING.  Prepare for the onslaught of Justin Bieber/Carly Rae Jeppsen brats who can't fucking sing, but look cute.


I am not part of that.  My stuff on the surface is not terribly difficult to digest, but if it is marketed toward Young Adult or YA, I am afraid of the Big C.


CENSORSHIP.


"In the Air Tonight," hmmm...despite all claims of the YA world being open minded and shit, they are not.  Swearing, sex, drugs and especially homosexuality is right the fuck out at a lot of 'em.


Well, Book 1 isn't so bad.  Book 2, well...


...I dare not sign an agreement for more than the first book because I know what will happen...or I think will happen.


They will tell me that I have to change characters, change the relationships, the sexual whatever they find or it's not marketable.


SORRY, NO DICE.


My stories are NOT offensive; at least I don't think they are.  I did my best to create the world I wanted to see, with some feet on the earth kind of thing.  The characters are not perfect, because we're not.  They make mistakes, they do and say dumb things, they err.  We all do.


Believe me, these are good stories or I would not be typing like this right now.  I have never felt so confident in my entire life about any fucking thing I have done.  This includes 27 years in radio, many years in theatre, and what I've done musically.  This is fucking it.


I am probably wrong in a lot of my assumptions.  When you feel like this, it takes you down.


Now...all of this having been said...I am finding again a way to as we'd say in Moonsong, 'ground and center.'


"A Change is Gonna Come," Shannon McNally.  Kind of a deep, resonant singer; Bonnie Raitt, and Lou Ann Barton are two voices I think of.  It's good stuff.


Weird how those titles pop up.  Alice's email tonight explained what she saw, and as usual she's brutally honest.  I did face the issue, and I worked through it today, as I have.  I know I have, and I have to keep doing it.


Most of what I fear is not going to occur, probably.  I have to hope that the publisher that wants to see the manga will put that forward.  That would be great; it would be excellent to give the book version of SDS-1 a push.  It would grant credits to Riz for all her help, and get Jen a platform to show the world how talented she is.  All down the road.


Bookwise, I've considered self-publishing.  Vanity Press, they call it; that label has changed, though.


If you pay a company to print copies of your book, that's a VP.  No editing, no promotion, no help but for your writing, and you're saddled with a thousand copies you have to hawk if you want your money back.  


"Angel Eyes," Kenny Burrell...a guitarist I've always admired.  Great stuff.


Vanity publishing is a dangerous thing.  I've seen too many people sitting in bookstores with a table full of badly-produced books, smiling in the vain hope that someone comes to buy their stuff.


They usually leave with the same amount of books they came in with.  Sad, but true.  


What struck me (and I learned this) was that these folks didn't give talks about their works; they didn't read from them, they didn't take questions from a small audience.  How else do you get the point across, and sell what you've got to sell?  You may have a wonderful story; but if you don't present it, what have you got?  Not much.


My friend Don Chase is on Amazon.com with a Kindle deal, of the kind that's talked about above.  He does not get as many sales as Ms. Park, but he has done pretty well for an unknown author with just one title (I think) out.  Don was also very kind with his advice and his time; he helped sound it all out for me.


I could do this, with other books I've written.  I will think about it; not yet.  The time is not yet right.


I need to be patient.


"Hold On Baby," old track from JJ Cale.  Another real good one.


I must see how the manga publisher takes it.  I feel good about it.


The others that are interested in book form; I will hold on, and see.


My contract with the agent runs into early 2013.  I don't regret working with her; she's worked hard and I've had her back when others have questioned her skills, experience, even her competence and motives.


She has my back, I have hers.  Fair is fair.


We'll see...more time is needed to think, and get the ideas in shape.


Tomorrow it could all be different.


Sometimes I feel like this:






This is the last segment of "Stephen Fry:  the Secret Life of a Manic Depressive."  It is an award-winning documentary on Bipolar Disorder; I am not bipolar, but I urge you to go to the beginning of this on Youtube and watch it.


It will explain so much.


The young woman in the image arrives at about the six-minute mark.  Some of what she deals with I feel deeply.  In fact, Stephen's own battle is well-chronicled here; and that of other public figures, and some not well known.


This video has helped me a lot; it has given a face to the terrible bouts of depression and what seems like madness.


I've written about this in my story Parasite Girls, and it pops up here and there throughout my writings.  The clip catches Stephen in one of his up moods, and you see what others deal with.  The girl above has it bad; not as bad as some, but I know the feelings all too well.


It is painful to watch at times, but one must.  


Nearly lost this blog a while back.  "We the People" by Guitar Shorty is on...


So yeah...here is where we are now.  I again must pull back and not let these things tear me apart.  Without the Zoloft, I am at times wracked by the stress and the insane feelings that should not matter but do.  This is war.


I am optimistic that the manga publisher will like what will be proposed.  I aim to have all the parts tomorrow night to send away to the agent and the publisher.


We shall see.  Meanwhile, for now I must wait on the other.  But I can lay groundwork for the other things I'm doing.


And trying to stop and look back, and forward too w/o expecting myself to perform miracles.  


###


Other things...job hunting in the radio biz is never fun, especially of late.  It's a dying industry it seems, but we are survivors.  I have a bit of work Friday, a bit next week, and after that, who knows?


I have no specific prospects at this point; again, wait and see.


And try not to go too crazy with worry, or with sudden boundless optimism that takes away my better judgement.


This is how it is.


###


I end on sad notes...my friend Aimee Johnston is hospitalized after being hit by a car outside her home.  She has suffered terrible injuries, and faces a long road of recovery.


Then even worse:  my old high school class and bandmate, Brian St. Cyr was found dead on Sunday.  We don't know for sure yet what happened; I suspect health issues, but I do not know.


I wish only good for them, and their spirits.



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