The Curse of the Creative

talent is cheaper than table salt. what separates the talented individual from the successful one is a lot of hard work. -Stephen King

growing up, my home was an inspired one. positive, creative energy burst through windowsills and slid under door cracks. creativity was abundant in the air we breathed, the energy that kept me and my siblings full of sparkling ideas and grand thoughts. my mother fostered our brilliance through her endless stream of encouraging words and firm position as our number one fan. no matter what idea i had, it was a great one. no matter what skill i wanted to learn, she imagined the possibilities right along with me. she made it very clear that there was absolutely nothing i couldn’t do, achieve and be if i put my mind to it. and we learned not only through her words, but her actions as well. it seemed like no matter what she did, it turned out on the winning side of the coin. whatever creative pursuit she was on at that moment, she went after it with bold, fearless passion. i admired that. and what an impressive list of pursuits she has had:

-when i was five, she sang lead and played the keyboard in an all girl band called Lady Deluxe. i remember being in the basement during their rehearsals and dancing around to their cover of Chaka Khan’s “Ain’t Nobody.”  probably the reason it’s still one of my favorite songs to this day. i remember shows downtown at Hart Plaza. i remember music infusing every part of my life. (more…)

my messy arse desk– an observation

her hands rose to her face wearily. bags carrying too many nights of missed rest settled beneath her brown eyes. she yawned, stuck one finger deep into her fro and scratched. sitting here was unproductive. it suddenly occurred to her that nothing about this desk or this small laptop said success; it was messy and unorganized, and deodorant sat next to a meant-to-be-discarded bluetooth, which was next to a butter knife slanted towards an opened silver nail file. she imagined the nail file the woman, the much larger butter knife a man, leaning in for the kiss. a blackberry atop a Dean Koontz novel watched in silently on their intimate moment. a rather snazzy black oval desk lamp hovered over the gathering of completely unrelated items that made up her desk mozaic, although shedding light on any of their stiuations would be nearly impossible with no lightbulb screwed into it. (more…)

Dirty Thirty

bringing in 30 the right way

Thirty.

Ah yes, the big three-oh. The age when women start keeping track of ovulation cycles and mourning each egg lost during monthly visits. The time when a woman examines her face in the mirror and takes note of each wayward line and makes a promise to her (now obviously fragile) reflection to not laugh so hard anymore, and not be so quick to frown, as to prevent the new concern of the dreaded wrinkle taking the place of your once pleasantly filled in laugh lines. Or perhaps she looks at her barren ring finger, its only decoration the shimmery red polish gleaming from her fresh manicure.

And career. Thirty is the year where everyone looks back on what they planned to do, and measure it up with what they have actually done. When I was eighteen, by thirty, my life was supposed to be the picture of a happily married with two children, successful psychologist with a best-selling book on How To Be Awesome under her belt, and a company car.

With thirty showing up today, I can confidently say that I don’t suspect a company car, and certainly not a husband and two kids, will be my birthday present.

And you know what, I’m perfectly fine with that. (more…)

Two Sweaty Dollars

two boys around the age of eight or nine ramble around the local Dollar Tree trying to decide what they want. they run down the candy aisle noisily, knocking over a shelf of Twizzlers, then throw them back haphazardly. people notice them, frown, annoyed that there are no parents governing their behavior.

the blond one, a cute little boy with an uncanny resemblance to the little boy from the Dennis the Menace movie and a highly decorated arm cast on, accidentally bumps into me while running away from the dark-haired one with freckles. they have picked up two or ten toy guns and are engaged in a high stakes battle, apparently, and don’t notice me standing there.

i move quickly out of the way. he says “oh sorry!” as he ambles past, followed by a loudly whispered “she’s hot!” to the other boy, who breaks out into hysterical laughter at the blond one’s not so discreet whisper.

i continue to shop, and about ten minutes later, i am in line behind the two boys, who have a handful of some kind of goo that sticks the the walls, random candy, and the toy guns they were playing with. i don’t notice at first, but when i hear them whispering, my attention is drawn to the black little girl about seven years old, who is in front of them checking out. she is on crutches, one leg completely immobile in a cast. the left side of her face has several bruises and scratches, as well as her right arm. she stands next to a girl who must be her older sister, about thirteen, who is telling her that she needs to put something back cause she can’t afford everything she wants. (more…)

Sliding Doors: Part X

well… Happy 2012 everyone. 🙂

hope the first week of the new year has been awesome for you all. mine has been pretty filled with writing, but that’s no different than any other week i suppose. annyhooo.. if you’re new to the Sliding Doors series, feel free to acquaint yourselves right up there ^ next to “About.”

as always, sharing is caring and comments are awesome.

enjoy!

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December 2010

“I’m really quite boring. I’ve had a pretty uneventful life thus far.” Nigel’s words slid through his intoxicated smile, landed in the glass of brown liquid he put to his lips.

The brunette across from him, all legs and hair and strong Australian accent, was flirting, tanned leg bouncing softly, sliding against his jeans. Close. Body language had always been a source of fascination for him. So much communication could be relayed with so little words. Women who had mastered the art of subtle, nonverbal communication were his weakness. Rubik’s Cube personalities drew him in.

She bit the lip above her dimpled chin, cast a sly, stormy blue stare his way. Gleaming hair made for a Paul Mitchell commercial cascaded down the bare shoulders hoisting her tilted, elegant neck.

“So you’re a liar as well. Figures. Lawyer, liar, close enough.” She stood, moved closer, stared him down from above. Five inch heels added to five feet and ten inches of thin, svelte angles. A cloud of sweet smelling air wafted his way. (more…)

Because I Love Art: Ai Weiwei

i love art.

sculpture, painting, chalk, collage, photography, classical, romantic, modern … i have a sincere appreciation for most art forms, as i consider writers a certain type of artist. somewhere hiding in a box marked “Old Stuff” in a corner of my mom’s basement, is a box full of my sketches, chalk works, and paintings. thinking about it, i’m a pretty right-brained person. i appreciate pretty much any creative medium, thus the reason why i couldn’t decide between art, photography or creative writing to focus on in school. writing won, but i still have special places in my heart for easels and lenses.

which is why i get excited when i discover dope artists i’m not familiar with. enter Chinese contemporary artist, Ai Weiwei. (more…)

Are You A Good Friend… To Yourself?

if you had a friend that spoke to you in the way you sometimes speak to yourself, how long would you allow that person to be your friend?

yesterday, as i clicked through my daily reads outside of the black blogosphere, most of them sites like Pick The Brain, Lifehack and CNN, i came across a site that i used to absolutely stalk when i needed to build a character’s personality and wholeness when writing a story. the site, called Thought Questions, has a relatively simple yet genius premise: pair a thought provoking or life question with a visually stunning related photo, and have people answer it. it’s rather amazing what happens when you have a character you’ve just thought up, answer a question about their life. suddenly this whole person starts to form, with dreams, and aspirations, and a detailed history.

the above question made me pause. i stared for a moment, but before i could form a character response, i started to consider all the hurtful adjectives i’ve slung my way during not-so-happy days. all the cruel words i’ve thought about the image staring back at me in the mirror, or doomed my life’s trajectory with a few dismissive and counterproductive conversations with myself on particularly negative days. i thought, what if a friend, even my best friend had said these things? would i appreciate her honesty? would i be able to take her words without any animosity and love her as the great friend she is? (more…)