Sunday, August 23, 2015


Have you ever wondered what it would be like to see words instead of music notes? I think that's the most intriguing part about music; it stirs in our minds images and wonder associated with each note. I often write with music, I would say- except for academia and poems- I cannot write without it. My writing is like a game, trying to match each syllable with each note of the song. I often listen to Pandora, Secret Garden station or Enya. Sometimes Within Temptation is good too. (But this is for Adrian Von Ziegler's music. Brilliant Composer that he is.)

I invite you to do a quick exercise with me.

1. Click on this link: AVZ-Bone Temple 2. As it plays in the background read this story below. (I understand people read at different speeds, so this may be a little fast or slow for you, try and feel with the music.)


The firelight burnt low and deep embers cast shadows far too large for their own power. Long trails of warriors sat around the glowing orbs to watch the Mage of the West perform. Her hair flowing about in black streams, swayed with the exotic motions of her body as a she stepped into the dim light. Turning and throwing her arms into the air she began the long awaited Telling Ritual. The flute notes seemed to carry her limber frame into a surreal world where fluidity met flesh. The Rite of War was about to be decided.
Her bare feet clung to the dusty earth with power and grace as her satin skin rippled with the strength and power of each step. Rolling her shoulders and extending her limbs, the lithe body seemed to live within the notes of the song that played out the ritual she had learned almost from birth. Turning in the air, she pleaded with the heavenly powers of her land to give wisdom to her dance. The waving veils and sultry steps she took all told of a coming war, but the victor was yet to be decided.
Two sons of the late Cheif sat with leering gazes, wagering among each other how they would divide the spoils of their conquest. Including which would take the Mage to wife and claim her inheritance and the rebels of the West that followed her. The dance meant little to their untrained, and warmongering eyes. They could not see the secret message amid the turns and bows, the deadly orders in her twisting and prostration. Her art was little more to them than rakish tradition that satisfied the Warriors' more primal urges. Women had been scarce for months.
As the Mage wove in and out of the shadowy glow of the fire, every male was transfixed waiting for her to reappear and to show dexterity and grace. She represented the only variable left in this dreaded war of clans. Whoever possessed her, owned all the lands and peoples of the West. Jumping out from the ebony vale of darkness her ivory skin flashed and dazzled the men. Turning in place her motions did not distract the men from seeing a larger more daring presence invade her space. Matching her steps, the hooded man bore the royal crest of the late chief, and his tartan wore he like a badge of honor. His bare arms adorned with blood soaked straps, the phantom appeared to be the resurrected corpse of the late chief. But years younger, and plenty more fierce.
In white horror and fear, the two sons gaped as the ghost pursued the young Mage with savage intent. Fleeing and being drawn in all at once the woman bent to the will of the specter her dance had conjured. He stocked her shivering frame and took hold of her left arm.With controlled force, he made her steps align with his. Her tiny frame shadowed by his mass, she had no defense against his onslaught. The late chief had conquered the Lady of the West and her beating breast was perfectly in sync with his.
As the fatal dance began to move through the ranks, the sons of the chief dared not move for fear the judging eyes of their father would find them and convict them of their coup. The twin brothers marveled in wonder as the two danced side by side; intimate and daring. They were powerless to touch the Mage for the entire realm of the West would rise to consume them. And their father, how could he be still alive, still virile, and bold? They watched, frozen as if by magic, as the young woman was wooed before them. Her hair tangled in the phantom's hands, her eyes clinging to his, her legs matching his step. From the eyes of the crowd, it was difficult to say who had control of the ritual anymore, way it the Mage or her Master? So inspired was their fear, they took no notice of the cloaked assassins moving throughout the ranks of their trembling men. Silent, like shadows, fluid as the music, the rebels of the West slipped into the dance unnoticed and began their grizzly work. Matched with the beat of the earthy drum, the bodies fell, and still the sons noticed not their fate was already decided. The path carved through the ranks and led the dance of death right to the dais the traitors sat upon.
With wide eyes, they paled in horror as the hooded phantom drew a long blade from the Mage's own belt. Their mouths clamped silent with the powerful spell they could only reel in agony as the legendary blade dispatched them into an agonizing, slow death. The brothers could only grimace as they were cast to the ground at the foot of the thrown. With his feet upon their back, the specter removed his hood and ordered the dance to stop. His late Chieftain was at last avenged.


Ok, so that was a little intense. Honestly, I think I got a little carried away in that one. That was actually really dark. Sorry!! But I hope you see my point. Writing with music can help enhance your work and make it more fluid.

I want to challenge you all, pick a theatrical song (easier without lyrics) and write a completely new and uninterrupted story with it. Not only is it great creative practice, it can make for some amazing stories later on. And once you're done, share it. Let the world experience that song through your writing.

Friday, August 21, 2015

Serious Laugh

Ever need that serious laugh? Today I did, and thanks to I found it.
Best one of the day.

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Seasons of Inspiration: How I Beat Summer Depression.

My ideal weather is snow.

Think of a wonderful, warm fireplace with a few logs burning away slowly while you are curled on the couch with a fluffy blanket. Maybe you have a cup of hot tea or coco- or in my editor's case a double scotch on the rocks- but most assuredly there is, in your possession, your favorite book and adequate writing implements just within reach (like every other square inch of your house.) Ok. So image in mind, hold it right there; now think of the abundance of inspiration that can bring. The Surplus of production!! Then imagine a wasteland of heat and blistering death. That's not very creative. It's not even fun. It's actually depressive. The overabundance of sunlight and sun-worshipers that I am forced to put up with over summer is enough to drive my liver into if it wasn't already there... from birth. Here is what I do when I am at the beach. I wear my ultra UV proof sunscreen, a full cover-up, hat, and glasses; then I bring my umbrella and lawn chair and sit watching everyone else cook like bacon on a skillet. Then once the sun sets and everyone's home, I actually begin to enjoy the atmosphere and the water. The sun is ridiculously draining for me. I can't enjoy it. Actually, I do enjoy it. From behind heavily tinted windows, paintings, and cheap travel postcards. That's how I enjoy it.
So needless to say I am becoming creative and happy in the fall then absolutely unstoppable in the winter. But, that only last like two months total in this blasted state. So for the next two months I am coming down from a high in spring and then the rest of the eight months of the year I am totally depressed. Summers in FLORIDA are an absolute killer. I die. And then I revive at night to die again with the sunrise.
I've been pushing to blog more and trying to get my life set on a schedule. But this ridiculous summer thing has been going on since January. So if you want to know how I beat the severe depression that I face in the summer...I don't. I wait it out by promising myself this year's winter will be longer and much better than last. Since drinking isn't a tradition writer's relief I can oft indulge- Slurpees are my Achille's Heel that and they are frozen.
Thinking about how unproductive I have been this summer got me thinking. It would be really fun to see what actually inspires people to create and be productive and conversely, what kind of external things depress them. For me add bananas to the list, right underneath endless summers. I thrive under deadlines, cold weather, and as far, far away from bananas as possible.
 But, what makes you, personally feel productive and happy? Is it being appreciated, hearing a happy song, seeing the person you love...? I am really curious. I would love to hear from people to understand who you are and what makes you create your masterpieces? And, how you beat the heat during your season of depression (seriously it doesn't have to be summer, I realize I am more of a vampire than most. Some people get depressed when they see anything white and fluffy- just as a resident of SouthEast Boston.)

So hit me with your thoughts, comments, and complaints.

-Vera Lynn
(All pictures courtesy of google images)

Friday, May 22, 2015

Heart to Heal

A wise man once compared love to a thrashing floor where the hard shell around your heart is beaten until the sheath breaks away. No matter how many layers you've been through, love finds new ways to reform you each and every day. Whether it's a new crack appearing in the tough husk you didn't think you had or the chaff separating for the first time and you're trying desperately to breathe after the will reform you with each breath if you let it. 
It's not wrong to feel threatened by the change, it's your choice to allow it, but until you've touched the pain you won't have any knowledge of the joys gained with the growth in your life when you allow it. Emotions are frightening, the thought of a heart being taken to the thrashing floor of love sounds immensely painful, but life cannot have love without feelings. And pain is one of them.
To be hurt by loving could mean a number of things. It could be a dream you must let go, a trial in your relationship, a mutual loss, a betrayal, a falling away, a falling could be anything you're afraid of or that one thing you overlooked...regardless of what it is, if you love it will hurt. 
But if there is one thing we can take comfort in, it's the fact that we are only human. We don't have to carry the burden of diety and angels, we can experience life as we were born into this world: human. Without unfairly judging eachother for struggles or holding a double standard. Humanity means we all have emotions and feelings, no matter how we try and deny them and to understand the emotions and feelings of others leaves our lives perhaps in more pain but richer for it. Perhaps in more confusion but deeper loved for it. No matter your situation in life; your religion; your personal struggles; or your personal achievements; never become so logical that you forget how to feel or so bitter that you can't touch the heart of others with compassion. 

The Prophet: Kahlil Gibran
On love- 
When love beckons to you, follow him,
Though his ways are hard and steep.
And when his wings enfold you yield to him,
Though the sword hidden among his pinions may wound you.
And when he speaks to you believe in him,
Though his voice may shatter your dreams
as the north wind lays waste the garden. 

For even as love crowns you so shall he crucify you. Even as he is for your growth so is he for your pruning.
Even as he ascends to your height and caresses your tenderest branches that quiver in the sun,
So shall he descend to your roots and shake them in their clinging to the earth. 

Like sheaves of corn he gathers you unto himself.
He threshes you to make you naked.
He sifts you to free you from your husks.
He grinds you to whiteness.
He kneads you until you are pliant;
And then he assigns you to his sacred fire, that you may become sacred bread for God's sacred feast. 

All these things shall love do unto you that you may know the secrets of your heart, and in that knowledge become a fragment of Life's heart. 

But if in your fear you would seek only love's peace and love's pleasure,
Then it is better for you that you cover your nakedness and pass out of love's threshing-floor,
Into the seasonless world where you shall laugh, but not all of your laughter, and weep, but not all of your tears.
Love gives naught but itself and takes naught but from itself.
Love possesses not nor would it be possessed;
For love is sufficient unto love. 

When you love you should not say, "God is in my heart," but rather, "I am in the heart of God."
And think not you can direct the course of love, for love, if it finds you worthy, directs your course. 

Love has no other desire but to fulfill itself.
But if you love and must needs have desires, let these be your desires:
To melt and be like a running brook that sings its melody to the night.
To know the pain of too much tenderness.
To be wounded by your own understanding of love;
And to bleed willingly and joyfully.
To wake at dawn with a winged heart and give thanks for another day of loving;
To rest at the noon hour and meditate love's ecstasy;
To return home at eventide with gratitude;
And then to sleep with a prayer for the beloved in your heart and a song of praise upon your lips.


Monday, March 2, 2015

Gush Post- Hobby Lobby

Ok, is it just me or is the store Hobby Lobby the greatest thing ever?! I've been every week since my sister first showed me the magic not so long ago. It's a phenominal store with a phenominal business philosophy. 
I have decorated my room and office with their items and I have to say it feels more vintage than ever before. I just love the styles they have. But even moreso I love the selections and the fact they aren't afraid to be who they are- period. So props to Hobby Lobby and their amazing store! 

Saturday, February 28, 2015

Book Proposals and How You Too Can Write Like A Pro!

NEWS: There is nothing worse to a writer than to have to endure the loss of a medium of communication. Since October 2014, I was up a DEEP creak without a boat or paddle. Not only did my computer crash, it killed my hard drive, fried every useful part of the computer and I lost over 50,000 words to my newest novel! The research was gone and my backup was plugged in when I got the virus and I lost that too! So needless to say the whole year ended horrible and 2015 started off amazing because I received a new laptop from a very dear friend.

Now on 2/28/15, I've caught up in work and writing. So I wanted to bring to your attention a few points about my latest project and hopefully help a few fledgling writers out. Book Proposals. That's right, I am entering the scary bigs now and have to write a winning proposal that promotes the purity and idiosyncratic nature of my work, while using math and science EEEK! Or it would be EEEK if I hadn't already know exactly what is needed.

So here is the breakdown of a decent book proposal and how I decided to go about it.  First there are two main categories, you and your book.

A brief biography that highlights your skills, talents, education, and prior publications.

Your Book: a synopsis no more than two paragraphs, final estimated word count, estimated completion date, description of target audience, description and information on sales market, list of comparable and competing titles and what makes your book better than them, a few sample chapters: 1-3 are usually the best, a complete table of contents with chapter outlines.. and complete means complete.

So lets tackle the most important part first, YOU. Yes, believe it or not YOU are the most important aspect of your work even though as a writer you don't feel that way. The brief biography is your chance to show creative writing skills and display talents. Did you win an elementary school competition in poetry? Mention it. Did you study writing in AP or college classes? Mention it! Whatever ties you to the art of the written word package it with your personality and jazz it up with your own wonderful angle. The better you sell yourself, the easier it will be to sell your work.

Now on to science, math, and a whole lot of technical blah blah blah. Lets start with the synopsis. Use one or two well crafted paragraphs to sum up your story and don't worry about reveling the surprise ending, that could be a major selling point you will miss out on if you don't mention it. So repeat with me now: MENTION IT! The estimated word count and completion date are for people who are published, if you aren't published then complete your manuscript and use your actual completion date and word count and let the editorial staff know that it is finished, that's a selling point.  

Step two, requires research in many fields. You need to find at least three, well selling books that are comparable competition to yours. Find out who buys them, how many are sold per annum, and what makes them sell. Plot, connection to real world events, good photos, all the juicy bits. Know them well. Now you know based on the competition who your audience is. Next compile your research into three professional and informative sections. 1. Your assessment and description of your target audience and why they will buy from you. Use that as a platform into speaking about the market for your product which is section 2. And that segways into section 3, the list of comparable titles and why your book is different and AMAZING. Remember highlight where they fall short and you have come behind to succeed.

Step three, end your proposal on a solid positive and professional note. Thank them for taking precious time to review your work and let them know you want to work with them, that's why you chose to contact them.

Step four, attach the COMPLETED table of contents and chapter outlines and first three chapters of your book.

Step five, rewrite it all.

Step six, edit and rewrite again

Step seven, have a knowledgeable writer and business person look it over.

Step eight, follow their feedback and rewrite

Step nine, make sure every last letter and punctuation mark is perfect and properly placed. Then and ONLY then should you send off your proposal via email or snail mail however they require.

Remember each organization has different requirements. Follow their guidelines and use mine as a filler if you see something that is useful that they might have left to your discretion.

If you would like any help or tips please comment below and I would be happy to assist in anyway I can. It is my person philosophy that competition is healthy and a good writer is a good writer even if that means I sell less. I would love to help you promote your work of art as being competitive in a tight and brutal market. I want all who have a desire to be a writer to see that dream realized and fulfilled.

Thanks for stopping by and stay classy!

Vera Lynn- "Realizing the impossible together."