Monday, November 19, 2012

A little less judgment, please

So last night was the American Music Awards, which I have watched more years than not. I didn't enjoy it much last night but it wasn't because of the winners or the performances. The reason I didn't was the Twitter commentary. Granted, I could have turned off my Tweet Deck. I should have. I would have enjoyed the show more. I may not have agreed with the award winners but the level of judgment I saw is what sucked more than any of the performances. If people hated it so much, why didn't they turn off their TV? I saw so many complaints about the music, about who won. I understand these artists are in the public eye and subject themselves to it. Everyone has a right to see/hear something and say "I don't like that." And that's perfectly fine. But why do people have to be so mean about it? Why do you have to bash that person? I don't care for Nicki Minaj but I didn't insult her. I respect others' opinions who might enjoy her music and weird style. For example, a lot of people don't like Kesha and talked shit about her. I happen to like her, even though she's strange. Her music is fun and at least she expresses herself. Is that what freaks people out? Of course, she's not for everyone. Neither is your favorite artist. Shouldn't we celebrate the diversity? The right of someone else to like that song, that dance? Even if you don't like it, that person is probably doing what they've always dreamed. Who are we to judge that?

It doesn't just happen with entertainers, of course. I see it all the time and it deeply saddens me. "She's ugly. She's an idiot. I wish she would go away." And those are the nicest things. Seriously, I don't like country music so I mute songs I don't like without bashing the artist or person. At least I hope I haven't bashed anyone. If I have, I apologize. Yeah, I bashed 50 Shades of Grey a bit because it's terrible writing but I try to respect the opinion of those who love it. I'll admit it's a bit of jealousy that it got published and my writing hasn't (yet). Maybe that's part of what it is with people who were bashed last night? Jealousy? Maybe you wish your favorite artist was given that much air time? I know I do but I also know my favorite artist(s) are probably not going to appear on an awards show anytime soon and even when they do, they're not going to get the respect they deserve. That's just how it is these days. That doesn't mean Justin Beiber didn't deserve his awards. I've always been indifferent toward him but he impressed me last night. His songs are good, his voice was strong and he's a hell of a performer. Ditto for The Wanted. I tend to not like any boy bands except my beloved New Kids on the Block, but I gave them a chance and they were really good. I did want them to start dancing but I guess that's not their thing. ;)

My point is simple. Treat others how you want to be treated. Say about others what you want someone to say about you. If you were on that stage, would you want someone to point out what you did wrong or what you did right? If it were your favorite artist, what would you want people to focus on? Kinda puts things in perspective, doesn't it? We all just need to be a little kinder to one another, whether the other person is famous or not. More love, less hate. More coming together, less division. Is that possible? Maybe I'm naive and a dreamer, but I like to think it is.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

25 Things About Me

Tried to post this on my Block Nation account but it's not letting me so since I had fun writing it, I thought I'd post it on my regular blog too. Enjoy!

1. What time did you go to bed last night and were you alone?
I went to bed around 10:30 but I sat up in bed, writing until 1-something. What time did Joe tweet? I had just laid down & drifted off when my phone went off w/ his tweet. ;) BUT then I woke up & tossed & turned for another two hours. I finally got up & meditated, then I fell asleep sometime after 3. :/ My book file says "last saved at 2:54 a.m." Egads. Yes, I was alone. I'm a single mom. Although Gus the cat slept in my room but not on my bed.

2. If you could be given ANY gift what would it be?
More love. Okay that's cheesy but it's true. ;) Materialistically, I would be deliriously happy if someone bought me a spot on the NKOTB 2013 Cruise or an Ultimate when they tour. Not sure anyone loves me that much. Haha! I'm a broke mofo.

3. What was the last film that really moved/disturbed/thrilled you and why?
The last movie I watched all of thrilled me and that was The Avengers. Really late to the game ;) It was funny, action-packed and made me realize I have a crush on Jeremy Renner. I think it was the outfit. And general bad-assery.

4. What is your favourite TV show of all time ie you've seen them all, can watch it over and over again and quote lines from it?
Supernatural!! I have watched since the pilot episode and never thought it'd be on for eight seasons but I'm so happy it has lasted this long. I hope it's on for 8 more years. Such great dialogue. So many great, quotable lines. "Saving people, hunting things, the family business." "Driver picks the music, shotgun shuts his cakehole." "You smell like a toilet." That's just a few and they're from the pilot episode. ;)

5. Whats your favourite way to wake up and whats the first thing you do?
My favorite way to wake up is from an awesome dream but I rarely remember my dreams in my old age. ;) Usually I wake up to get my daughter on the bus at the ungodly hour of 6:15 but luckily I can go back to sleep for a few hours. I like to meditate first thing and then I always look forward to my Dunkin Donuts coffee. :)

6. What would you call yourself if you could choose your own name?
I've always kinda liked my name and this is who I am so I don't want another name. However, I've always loved the names Kirsten and Azura. I named my first daughter Kirsten and wanted to name my second daughter Azura but I knew she wouldn't have blue eyes so I named her after my great-aunt Adeline, which is also a beautiful name. if I have another daughter, her name will be Azura, if she's going to have blue eyes. ;) I know that doesn't really answer the question but there ya go anyway.

7. If you had to do a bushtucker challenge (you have to eat insects/grubs etc) what would be the worst thing you had to eat?
Let's just pray I never have to because I fear I would not survive. :-s

8. Whats the worst/most embarassing CD/Album you've ever owned and do you still have it?
Hm. Probably Perfect Gentlemen from NKOTB's Magic Summer tour. But they were so cute at the time! haha! <---I'll just use my sister's answer. I think it's in a bag of old cassettes somewhere ;)

9. What would be your dream vehicle (bikes, cars, boats, batcar and millenium falcon is allowed!)?
I've always wanted a black Ford Mustang. My main character in the book I wrote & hope to publish drives one. :)

10. Whats your favourite fantasy person/people?
Lord of the Rings- hobbitses!

11. What characteristics do you dislike in yourself?
Self-doubt <---- working to change this

12. Your favourite item of clothing and why?
My NKOTB Cruise 2011 hoodie. It's so comfortable and reminds me of the amazing time I had on that ship. It already has a hole in it *thumbs down* and I will wear it unti lit disintegrates :D

13. If you could go anywhere in the world on vacation, where would it be and who would it be with?
Can I cheat and say an around the world trip? Italy, Paris, then Australia and New Zealand, maybe throw in Bali because reading Eat Pray Love made me want to experience it before I die.

14. If you could have any animal/creature, What would be your ultimate pet be?
A sea turtle! But it'd have to be free in the ocean... so maybe he'd just come visit me? ;) <---- stealing my sister's answer again :)

15. What did you want to be when you were little and do you think you ever will be?
I wanted to be a writer and I am. Just not published yet! <----- again, her answer & mine. What do ya want, we're twins!

16. Whats the next planned event you're looking to in your life?
Thanksgiving next week at my mom's so I can make myself sick on Mom's turkey & dressing. *drooling thinking about it*

17. What were you doing before you started this?
Drinking my Dunkin Donuts coffee, eating Krispy Kreme pumpkin spice doughnut holes & thinking about what I will write next in my book

18. What was the last thing you ate that you really shouldnt of ?
Those pumpkin spice doughnut holes.
19. If you were an ice cream/haagen daz/ben an jerrys flavour what would you be?
Neopolitan ice cream so I can be a mix of three wonderful, tasty flavors - haha!
20. Who was the last person you spoke to that you didnt want to talk to?
I plead the fifth.
21. What was your favourite toy as a child . . .and now?
A cat pillow I got from my great-grandma at 3 or 4 years old named Goldie. I still have her. She helps me when I don't feel good, swear to God.

22. When was the last time you cried laughing and why?
I think it was at the Last Night Gus episode of Psych - HILARIOUS

23. What is stashed under your bed/mattress?
A box of the journals I've kept the past 10 years, old cassette tapes from the 80s and 90s, college books.

24. What did you dream about last night?
That I was in an airport with a Blockhead I know of but have never met or spoken to. We were supposed to be on the same flight, then she decided to book a flight that was leaving in five minutes and I said "Are you crazy?!" She said "I gotta go!" and took off for this departing plane. I said, "I ain't doing that." So I guess that means I'm a crazy BH but not THAT crazy? Haha

25. What are you really afraid of?
 Snakes. Losing a child. :(

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Updated layout and a little about my first ever book :)

I really just wanted to write a blog post to show off my updated layout. ;) Isn't it perty? I don't remember where I got this picture from or I'd give credit. I love NYC and saved this photo a year ago, almost to the day. Since I decided to use the falling leaves graphic, I thought it was perfect.

To update on my writing, since I finished my 45454th edit of A SCARRED MIND (slight exaggeration), I've been working on editing the sequel. It has been going well but I've lost my focus the past few days. I'm close to the end but can't seem to get to the end. So rather than force it, I pulled up the rewrite of my first ever book. I've been working on the rewrite since 2010. This is based on the first novel I ever wrote, back in 1990 at the tender New Kids crazy age of fifteen. What's changed, really? I'm considerably older now (you do the math) and I'm still New Kids crazy. Ha. :) But the years often seem to melt away and not seem as long ago as it was. I've often thought it would be cah-razy if that first book was ever published. The story means so much to me. In this age of YA, it may be my work most likely to "make it." I really hoped/prayed/thought A SCARRED MIND would be the one to be published and I still hope so. By the way, here's my pitch for ASM:

Jake has always had a way of knowing things but now that he’s foreseen the vicious murder of a stranger, he has to step out of his comfort zone and actually tell someone. Stung by years of ridicule and crystal ball jokes, he fears going to the police. He convinces two detectives to check it out, but as his visions become more frequent and intense, he learns the stranger isn’t the only one in danger.
Since it's still a work in progress, I haven't come up with a pitch for the redux of my first book, lovingly always known as "The Witches Book." This book became a series that I wrote throughout my high school and college years. Six books, each around a thousand handwritten notebook pages (wow), basically chronicling my life from age fifteen to twenty-two. So much fun to write. My BFF and twin sister were my biggest fans and hounded me to write this book daily. In fact, near the end of our high school years, in the days before our graduation, the school held a slide show of our class and in front of the entire school, they flashed a photo of Angi, Abby and I reading my book outside the library, where we often met in the morning before classes. We never even knew someone took a picture. ;) Good times. I think I was writing Part Four at that time.

The basic plot is brothers Matt and Zach move to rural North Carolina from the big city and find that their new town seems to be run by a strange cult. Jay, the guy who lives across the road from their house, witnessed a ritualistic killing and draws them into a world far more dangerous than the city life they've just escaped. The guys and a group of girls (me and my friends, of course) band together to try to stop the cult from making their next human sacrifice, which is scheduled to happen within days, if Jay's calculations are correct. This first book set up a seemingly unending war between the gang of good guys and the bad guys, who I dubbed "the witches" because I didn't know any better when I was fifteen. ;) This story is very close to my heart. The decision to rewrite the first book came in 2010 when I moved and couldn't find the original handwritten pages of that book. Recently, my BFF Angi found it at her house THANK GOD! I hated to think I had lost those pages. I'm sure the writing is wonderful :/ but still, it was my first book and despite the bad writing, will always be special.

So I guess I've rambled on long enough. Back to reading and possibly finishing the rewrite of this very special book. :) Happy Veteran's Day, by the way! Remember to thank a veteran and honor those who died so that we could remain free.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Go #Vote!!

Showing how addicted to Twitter I am, I even put the hashtag in the title. ;) If you follow me on Twitter at @twisted_writer today, you're going to get sick of me urging people to vote. I did this a few months ago, with the primary and when my state voted on the ridiculous Amendment 1. I hope that I'm not hanging my head in shame tonight as I was that night, when the bill was passed. I believe it passed because people didn't educate themselves on the facts, on what that bill meant. It was advertised as a ban on same sex marriage, but NC already had that. This amendment ensures same sex couples can't even have a civil union, or that a heterosexual couple living together who chooses not to marry -- they also can't have a civil union. I don't know why people seem to feel heterosexual marriage is in danger. If someone else being with the person they love endangers your marriage, then you have far more serious problems. Everyone loses with that amendment as far as I'm concerned. But it's already passed and I pray that someday it is repealed.

ANYWAY :) The issue today is that I just want people to vote and have their voices heard, their opinions counted. The argument that neither presidential candidate is who you want to run the country is not good enough for me. So what? You still educate yourself and learn which one you think will do the best job. Otherwise you are letting someone else control your life by not speaking/voting for yourself. People have died for us to have this right. I have tweeted this before, but I urge everyone to check out the film Iron Jawed Angels. It's a vivid depiction of what women went through so that we could have the right to vote. They were arrested and tortured, their lives torn apart, but they did not give up because they believed in their cause. They fought for equality for ALL people. I feel that I honor them each time I cast a ballot and I certainly think of them every time I vote. In my younger years I may not have voted every time, but I make damn sure I do as an adult. We are Americans and this is one of our hard won rights. Even if you're a white man, someone still died for you to have the right to pick your leaders. No one has an excuse to not vote if they are of age and a citizen of our great nation. So get out there & VOTE!!!

As many of you know, I am a Democrat and proud of it. For a while, I wasn't going to state who I was voting for but ultimately I decided I should to get the word out. I did not vote for Obama in 2008, I'll admit. I wrote in Hillary Clinton. I knew she didn't have a chance but at the time I didn't think Obama would be a good president. Funny because now after four years of him in office, I think he's an incredible president. I'll admit I was wrong. Many have said he didn't do his job. But you have to know as messed up as our economy is, it's going to take any president longer than four years to fix it. Just look at what he accomplished. Most of the troops are home. Osama bin Laden is dead. We're on the road to recovery. I don't want that road to suddenly be blocked, or worse, we all have to turn back and go back in time fifty years. I want to keep my rights as a woman. If I need Planned Parenthood (and I have, in the past) I want it to be there. I want my child and others to be able to get a free book each month from Partnership for Children. If Romney becomes president, these programs will go away and that is incredibly sad. Personally, I would never get an abortion but I want to know that I have the choice. I want to be in charge of my body, not some crusty old white man in Washington. Just because I don't think it is the right choice for me doesn't mean I can say another woman can't get one.

I'll tell you a little story. When I found out I was pregnant with my beautiful, amazing daughter Adeline, I was single and had recently broken up with my boyfriend because he moved to another state. When I told him I was pregnant, he said he'd pay for me to get an abortion. I considered it. A baby was really going to cripple me financially. I wasn't exactly well off and still am not. So it seemed like the obvious choice. But I could not do it. I had heard the baby's heartbeat by the time I got up the nerve to tell him. I had cried tears of joy when I heard that boom-boom-boom. I could never end her life. BUT I considered it and I am not going to say another woman is wrong if she got to that point and knew she couldn't give her baby the life she/he deserved and ended her pregnancy. It is her right. She may have been careful, like me, used protection and still gotten pregnant. Some lives are just meant to be. She may have been raped. It's not up to us to judge. That goes to a higher power. So that's how I feel about abortion: it's not for me, but I can't say it's not right for someone else. I hope that you understand what I'm saying here. Not judging anyone and neither should you. Just get out there and vote today, if you haven't already. This election is going to change all our lives. Even if you don't agree with me, VOTE.

One more thing: if Romney is elected, I will respect him since he was chosen by the people as the President of the United States. If Obama is re-elected, we should give him the same courtesy. Name calling is never cool. We are (supposedly) all adults and the leader of our nation deserves respect, not ridicule. Even if I don't agree with him. Now, GO VOTE!!!!