Friday, May 31, 2013

Pictures Of A New Book: Page Forty Three

A seventeen year old writer/musician sent an email, "Bro. About to graduate. Grades are through the roof. I spent my childhood determined to become a doctor. Now that it's time to shed this part of my life. I've changed my mind. I can't find anyone that understands how badly I want to write and perform music." It took a little bit of time to reply. I've never been the type to shame an Artist. Only to receive, "What I do scare you away?" Without thought I fired back, "Have you looked at the numbers? The creative industry is oversaturated. Do you practice every day? Are you performing on any stage? Dreams are a great high! But it's desert for those controlling song lyrics. Then again...I could be wrong. Maybe your lifelong wish is to be in a bar band. My gut says stick to what you've studied thus far and remain true to becoming a doctor." I knew the teen would revolt, "You've written your entire life! You make it look like nothing gets in the way. I want the same! To write music until I hear silence." My turn to be the kid wearing big boy pants, "How could there ever be silence when God creates every day?" The moment those words fell from the tips of my fingerprints onto the face of the flat screen...I was reminded of my current writing project Scrambled Eggs. I was visited. An extremely rainy cold Carolina night. The visitor was easily recognized. He sat on the corner of my bed. We cried. The moment I woke. I knew my life would change forever. But I didn't know how or when. I documented the visit inside my daily journal. As if to be counting down the days of the creative arrival. Between February 2011 and November 2012. I had written a lot of songs. Been to the studio to record countless times. Argued with producers. Shattered friendships. Injured my dreams of chasing. Even in radio. I said, "It's over." "How could there ever be silence when God creates every day?" Because I document growth. As stupid as it may or might seem. It allows me to revisit without taking up too much room with assumption. Nearly every sheet of music. Every lyric scratched onto the backside of radio copy. How somehow, someway ended up being some of the most expressive moments inside this book I currently write Scrambled Eggs. The visitor. His face I did know. Shallow as it seems. He found a way to breathe. Through my writing. Just this morning. I tapped away at the computer screen, "Be the writer. Live out the pressures of challenge meeting discovery. Make light for corners darkened by madness. Send into the future your art. For anybody can be a doctor. But nobody but you can be you when holding that writing instrument."

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Great Writing Doesn't Guarantee Great Voice Acting

I live, breathe and eat “Voice Acting.” Radio, television, industrial and digital presentations. All of which require several different approaches of “Believability.” The knowledge to take words off a sheet of paper and give them a life of their own in the real world. People think it’s a natural gift. The moment those words slip out of their mouth and onto my path….the only choice I have is to stop and take them on. Instantly I begin searching for the door to door salesperson that just dumped a vacuum cleaner on your tight budget. Voice Acting is a trained art. A skill. Nobody wakes up Monday dreaming of being a black belt in martial arts then gets one wrapped around their waist by Friday. Doctors, Lawyers and Wal-Mart Greeters go through special training. I meet a lot of people taking a whack at voice acting. Hey! I’m one of them! The only difference is I don’t walk around thinking, “I was born with the voice.” That’s the voice you don’t want. Human’s trying to yuck it up like Radio talent is like listening to a merry go round go backwards. But you can be trained. John Causby at the Ground Crew in Charlotte hosts several events each year based on tuning up your believability. Every walk of life needs communicators. Even if you don’t want to do commercials…imagine how powerful you could be as a team leader with their inflection and volume under control? More importantly…the real factor becomes present. Who wants a boss that thinks they’re a leader? People are led by believability. The attempt to become a Voice Actor gets easier through practice, study, coaching and loyalty not to yourself but to the client searching for the perfect pitch, volume and tone. Wait! The believability! Everybody tries to do it. Few endure the day to day layout of expectations to become great at it. When the jobs aren’t bursting off the horizon…the desire to become a Voice Actor pretty much becomes that thing you once tried. We’ve all met that person. I once did radio. Oh really? Where? My cousin had a station in Butte, Montana and he gave me a twenty minute break every Sunday night at midnight. I wasn’t making any real money so I had to bolt. Modifying your method of thinking turns your voice into a tool. But don’t stop there! Be a better writer too! Take on the challenge of production. Look beyond the script and see how many lives it takes to create a budget worthy enough to advertise in market number twenty four Charlotte, North Carolina. The very moment you walk into a studio and bang something out. Someone at the seed is going to be fired. Nobody stopped in to buy. They couldn’t afford to keep them on. The very second your gift of performance is too bored to layout a conversational approach. Think about the manager that took a chance on radio or television when everybody else advised them not to waste their time and energy. Drop your tracks and call it a great day! When was the last time you thought about the afterlife of your delivery? Who’s affected? How will they be affected? Where will they be after your delivery fails to connect with a Twitter and Face Book addicted smart phone talking mother of six in the backseat nervously trying to figure out what’s for dinner while fearing that her husband is cheating? Where does your voice fit in? Do you have the patience to become a Voice Actor or is this something you sort of picked up cuz someone at McDonald’s said, “You should be on the radio!” Teaching people to play radio is a business. It’s ultimately up to you to further the journey. To walk beyond that itty bitty teenie weenie little door just opened. Nobody was born with the voice of God. Because…if you truly think about it. Look how many people don’t recognize it while enduring life’s every change. Thunder doesn’t move people forward. I find it amazing how people run from it. Hmmmm Believability…

Monday, May 13, 2013

Pictures Of A New Book: Page Forty Two

Harnessing control of your writing. It's like looking at huge cloud in the eastern sky that's taken on the shape of a duck and telling it to make no changes until you get back with a camera. That isn't thunder in the background. That's God laughing. The adventure of physically penning out my latest book Scrambled Eggs cannot be compared to the second draft being pumped into the flat screen surface of a computer. It's not a battle of the personalities. The textured agreement writer's grow into is the courage to hold true to being the Artist. Constantly I'm locked in conversation. Writers, Poets and friends billowing with laughter when having to explain that writing maps will never make it to a GPS system. A beginning, middle and end has every right to be written differently. In 2002...I killed off a main character in my book Halloween 78 The Blizzard White Canvas. I remember sitting at that computer completely frozen. How dare I take a chance on breaking away from where the original path suggested I play! Was it the wine talking? Or could it have been my confidence level shouting, "You think you're good. Now become great!" Scrambled Eggs is no different than Conversation With The Devil and the five rewrites of Another 1,021 Thoughts. Each time I went in. I came out with a different but better picture. And you wonder where "Perfectionism" comes from? You can't! Don't even think about it! You'll never grow forward! Writing will always take on a different shade of gray. How I feel at the moment cannot be compared to ten minutes from now. My first wife struggled deeply with perfectionism. She was the keeper of a brilliant story called Black Hand Angel. I loved hearing the story come to life. Then come to life. Then come to life. But it never lived. The fact that my imagination still wants to dance with Scrambled Eggs inspires me to believe the best part of the story still hasn't been shared. I do keep true to the skeleton. I know where I am while taking huge chances on character development. I love painting the walls of a coffee shop to the point of craving the black tar and a fresh slice of banana bread to go with it. Interviewing Yoko Ono was like changing the oil in the engine. What she shared and how it was delivered through her amazingly authentic storytelling methodisms laid out a better coat of many colors. Making it part of my book has to happen! Or it will sit in the corner of my thinking process festering like an open wound til it pops. Writing is supposed to be fun. Allow yourself to suck in some air and set free the music your heart has waited a lifetime to paint.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Pictures Of A New Book:: Page Forty One

When does writing daily become outside communication? The same time that writing daily finds a way to speak you through bad adventures. Journaling is a man's way of saying, "I keep a diary." Sometimes I document. To make marks. This is where I stood. Not too tall. But I showed up. All too often I brag. I search for tomorrow. Barely realizing I didn't locate yesterday. As of late. These words that leap from my right hand. Have been placed onto. Into. Within... the living breathing threads that connect a sheet of paper's soul to my imagination. Two scenes my character's didn't live. I did! But without doubt. It seemed to fit better inside. On top of. Along with their every step. Who then? Am I? They or them? Might I have been? Even if for a moment. In the presence. Sitting not with. But in them. Mind blowing isn't this current book I write titled Scrambled Eggs. I write radio commercials for a living. I study the art of persuasion. Mind blowing are the faces I become. Or should I have written? Who I am. When being I is truly spelled e.y.e.