Transmitting the last Ruckin’ of the old year.
When you really think about it, aren’t we all just a work in progress? We’re never a finished project, that is unless we’re dead. We’re never truly done with our work, because the next work awaits. Even if we’re fortunate enough to gracefully–willfully–retire, what awaits us is the work of getting on and keeping on at actually living, or if the case may be, barely surviving. It’s all work, and if we’re breathing air, it’s work in progress.
As you might imagine by that intro, I’ve been wandering around inside my head the past week and a half, given my unexpected newfound free time at home. Considering the way my head works it could be argued it’s too much time–time that could lead to mental rampancy because I could literally overthink myself into oblivion (they say that’s kind of a Libra thang).
I think the subconscious question echoing in the back of my headspace has been WHY AM I HERE AND WHAT SHOULD I BE DOING? Aside from being a family man, my default answer always seems to be that I should be creating and producing art, either music or stories. My curse is I am highly creative and so if you add the aforementioned overthinking aspect to that equation, well it helps get the meticulous, large-scope planning done, but unfortunately the acute focus and execution tends to be more elusive. That’s something that simply cannot continue and steps are being made to reverse this trend.
I am also a very collaborative person, particularly musically. Making music alone hasn’t been highly fulfilling to me since I was that teenage kid in his room writing all those guitar riffs that would eventually lead songs for my first band. Once I began to experience that band life and the mode of collaboration that comes with a band, it became the only way I prefer to make music. Have I written and produced (and performed and recorded) plenty of music on my own in a solo musician capacity? Sure. Yet despite the inherent pride that comes with that, it can never top making music with others.
Comics/graphic fiction is another art form I desperately want to produce work in. It is also highly collaborative because at the very least, for myself as a writer/creator it relies on a very close working relationship with an illustrator, if not also an inker, colorists and letterer (if neither of us are providing one of those aspects also). A few weeks ago I lamented the lack of successful connections with prospective collaborators where that’s concerned.
Here’s the rub: independence and self-sufficiency are core values to me, and so that makes the desperate need to work in these collaborative arts so frustrating and ultimately fruitless of late. If I would never had to rely on other people for contributions, I surely would not. Never mind the fact that from 2008 to 2011 I composed and produced some 60+ pieces of music by myself with the exception of a few pieces that were collaborative (much of this music is available online via one streaming platform or another; see the JUKEBOX).
Now, if only I had never stopped drawing twenty years ago. I would already be illustrating my own stories.
Perseverance is a Virtue
But hey, I’m not giving up. I’m going to used my newfound-hopefully-finite free time to prepare and pitch some projects to prospective artists in the hopes that 2017 is finally that year to make something happen on that front.
Earlier this month I tapped my artist friend Jack S. Rogers for a project that’s been brewing for a few years, inspired by an image he created some six years ago or so. The codename I’m using for this project (meaning it’s not it’s official name) is Project AmWitness.
Project Blood-Borne, that long-gestating novel series that I’ve written some 10k words for has had a plotting breakthru that just arrive in my noggin this week that currently sorting through. It addresses a couple of issues I was having with the narrative scope vs. the complex timeline of events. It’s also been split into two separate-yet-intimately/intrinsic-ly-connected trilogies, one of which is decidedly
Young Adult New Adult.
Off the Grid
Barring a possible last-minute decision to do some kind of “Year-End List” kind of post, this may be the last proper post of the old year. At the Winter Solstice I’d like to “go dark” for the rest of the old year and come back better than ever in the new year. Maybe shutdown all social media for a couple of week’s worth of radio silence. Yeah, that would be a first.
Next year I want to diversify this blog again with a variety of subjects like it used to be in the early days of this decade. The last two years have been focused on writer-ly aspects, but with the focus on just me as a writer, I think to its detriment.
I have a big day tomorrow but I’ll come back tomorrow with proper year-end send-off.
Until then, be good.