Showing posts with label Writing. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Writing. Show all posts

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Love is Queen

When I started So a Psychic and a Rocket Scientist Walk into a Bar is was a customary stand alone one off. Somewhere in the middle of writing this story I realized that situations like the one i'm describing are extraordinary. This wouldn't happen just to create a perfect love between two people. No two people are that special unless their connections have broader implications for not just them and their immediate environments but somehow for the world.

I began to explore the concept of prophecy and mythology.  I read origin stories from different religions and the concept of the world ending.  And on the back of this one novel I have plotted out 3 different connected series' as well as a stand alone series that can have as many configurations as I can think of.

Sergei and Clair began a lot more than they will ever know and I hope the reader gets to take the journey with them.  I hope they feel the fissure of excitement and joy I have whenever I open my laptop and see how Clair and Sergei are doing on their long road to fulfilling their destiny and the new direction of the world.  The common will no longer be common, the framework redesigned and love is queen.

Always w/Love,

Sue

Other Posts on this book:
That Scene with Sergei and Clair
Sergei
Clair Fair
Love is Queen
So a Psychic and a Rocket Scientist Walk into a Bar

Grab your copy of So a Psychic and a Rocket Scientist Walk Into a Bar
Amazon
Barnes and Noble
Smashwords

Thursday, April 7, 2016

Learning to Not be Ruled by Genre

It is a long road that I believe never truly ends.  That road is that of a writer when finding their voice.  The best of the best say that the most important part of this journey is the journey.  No matter what never stop writing. For many writers that is almost like saying never stop breathing.  But as an asthmatic I can tell you that breathing is not always a guarantee. And over the years my writing has come and gone like a breath in some instances. Whiffed away without any hesitation or thought. My well seemingly run very dry.

However my mind still swam with scenarios of unfulfilled passions and desires. The human spirit needs passion and desire.  Creation is as much a part of living as the breathing and the beating. Most seem to not notice that life is nothing if not a lesson in sheer natural brutality. The elements that make us up crammed together in clumps and fits.  Our very systems demand the use of words like force, beat, move. As they say the struggle is real. And it is a struggle.  Nothing worth having has ever been born politely. It comes in a haze of blood, sweat, and tears screaming its battle cry ready to be heard, listened to and engaged. Life does not ask for the fight, life demands it. So the only failure is in trying to deny the fight. Because then you are truly denying life.

When I decided I wanted to try my hand as a writer I was sure that I wanted to write romance. I had a game plan like I normally do. I wanted to start as a romance writer then move into more science fiction or fantasy. As offensive as the thought is I was young and foolish enough to believe romance writing was an easier place to start. I was very very foolish years ago. As many know the genre is not well thought of by literature critics. However I dare to say that writing romance may be even harder because of how it is thought of.

It reminds me of professional wrestling in a lot of ways.  The trick to professional wrestling is that there is no trick. Its hard work, dedication to a goal and a performance. It eats up life because the only way to get better like with any craft is to continue to hone it. And yet it is not very well thought of by many people who view it as fake.  In many ways similar to how some authors view genre writers. The analogy forces me to think about the limitations provided just by perception. Because the barriers are not one sided.  All are affected by the perception and the need to justify it. As human beings we love balance and we like to know the answer. We subconsciously lean to a lie of perception as much as we may lean to the truth. Just as there is no way to convince gravity to stop working for a wrestler, there is no way to easily construct a palpable endearing emotion laden first kiss for a romance author. It is a sport of conditioning, practice, and training.  The road is long and the culmination is to tell the perfect story.

I now know that there is no such thing as an easy writing. The quality writing, the change the world stuff is a labor of intense love, commitment and selfless devotion. It is staying up all night to finish the most crucial scene you have ever written.  But they all are aren’t they? And the answer is yes, every single one IS the most crucial scene you have ever written.

I was given the advice that my heart knew was true before it was even given.  Write what you love. I started writing because of love, I write about love.  But I was looking for the trick, I was asking gravity to stop working for a moment. Sometimes in a craft you get completely immersed in your tools instead of the art giving the tool the power. It becomes about fitting in, coloring in the lines and less about expressing your unique voice. The truth is the man behind the curtain is in fact just a man.  A man dedicated and committed enough to an idea that he was able to convince the world he was an all-powerful wizard. He went outside of genre, outside what the limitations of a man should be.  In the process he stopped allowing his tools to limit him, he instead gave them new power.

I was a visual artist in high school and became a vocalist and music composer. I noticed early in my art studies that I was better with colors than with black and white.  What I understood before I left was that this was a myth I had told myself. My mind was so enrapt with technique that art was not being made. When I went into music I noticed the same. I was concerned with vocal replication of other artists and not concerned with my own sound. The girl is hardheaded. Somewhere in my junior year of high school, somewhere in the middle of performing Deep River, somewhere in the middle of composing my 3rd work technique faded and art finally took form. The moment is indescribable. For a split second you hear clearly, you feel deeply.  The world is beautiful, lovely. You absolutely matter and what you have to say bears weight and has the meaning and affluence of a living viable human soul and spirit laced throughout it. It connects you to the now, the past the future and the fountain of infinite bliss and wisdom. Pure as you and I are meant to be.

The point is have influences, mimic them as you need, read the art books, understand the style, refine your craft; use your tools. Before its over though make sure the voice is your own.  A lesson I have to teach myself over and over again. This is my ultimate love letter to remind myself why I should never give the tools power but instead use the art to empower them. I'm writing this so that when I start to forget and I'm worried about book sales, or another press or agent saying no that I stick to my declaration and follow the advice of knowledgeable others.  I embrace these tools and make them an extension of myself and what I need this world to see and understand. That I listen to the beating, pounding pace of my heart and stay with the fight. That I fill what I do with my will, my spirit; my spark. With my love, always with my love.

Saturday, May 9, 2015

Not Another Bodice Ripper - The Case for Serious Romance Part Two

THE ANSWER

Love is a personal endeavor no matter how universal television commercials would like it to seem. The nature of it is idealized for some, and wide open for others. The truth is when writing about something as profoundly intimate as love, it is really bad form to try and relate love in another voice or fashion other than your own. The truth and charm to a story comes from that bit of truth that is included. That bit of truth is the relatable aspect of any story. This is the core of your own voice as a writer. Regardless of how many people 'understand' your character's plight or not, the truth of the situation will ring forth and give the story just the push it needs to really fly.

With that in mind it is very bad form for generalists to assume that a certain plotline or story premise is in line with any pre-described social agenda. The liberation of women was just that, liberation. Liberation is the right to make choices. A woman can decide if she would like to be a public figure or a private one. A woman can choose to vote, bare children, and get married or not. The claim that the creation of or reading of romance somehow 'tricks' women into believing in self destructive rhetoric is almost more offensive than any other misogynic claim as it actually feeds into the myth that women are incapable of processing thought beyond what they know to be a fictitious account.

In laymen's terms, the claim in essence says that a grown woman is not capable of separating fantasy from reality. This is a claim usually attached to mental illness, and honestly makes light of conditions suffered by those who have legitimate hormonal imbalances, injuries or birth defects that are associated with mental illness. Reading romance is not an illness. Also it no more detracts from feminist prose as it would add to it. With that being said, no romance is the same. Like all forms of entertainment and media there are levels of content. No two books actually read the same.

The romance formula is very easy to follow. Usually two people, and in recent entries sometimes more, have a great potential for a romantic relationship. They must confront each other and often times the results are not initially positive. That is because of individuality. This is an aspect of romance that is explored more than it is in some of its traditional fiction contemporaries. You have the dichotomy of a relationship as opposed to the relationship being a side car to the dichotomy of the story. In the end the essence of the story is to confront relationship boundaries and expose them. This is a very emotional plane of existence that can sometimes hold the same trauma as a tragedy. And it should. Love is a life changing event. Seeking to experience it, and be bound to another person for all time is also a life changing event. As far as I know not a single life changing event has ever gone quietly and without lessons in humility and shame. These are human emotions that bear the weight in most situations. Yet in love they are the core of what this entanglement is about.

The way a writer creates this is wide open. This sense of growing affection and intimacy is developed from one thing and one thing only, seeing the person for who they are and loving them because or despite it. This is a truth that romance novelists understand that is rarely examined in most contemporary literature where relationships seem to be of convenience and not of necessity. Others are forced attachments where the characters are bound by seemingly invisible tendrils of emotion that are strong enough to bond yet not strong enough to carry the story.

To some degree the emergence of more acceptable contemporary popular fiction, and the need to be perceived a certain way by others has taken the blush from the rose as far as sweeping love relationships are concerned. Romance novels have long been the butt of literary jokes and recently in a twisted parody of art imitating life some have even endeavored to live up to this reputation of being incomprehensible smut with bad punctuation and grammar. But what are the far reaching consequences to this? This seeming end to fairytale as it were that now blocks the heart from even seeking some idealized contentment. Is it this lack of 'romance' being taken seriously in day to day life that has enabled a lack of respect for sex, marriage, and all romantic relationships? Has the 'replaceable' mate taken the place of the 'irreplaceable' mate?

Today more than ever in a world of revolving doorlike changes we need the purity of actual romance.

Sunday, August 17, 2014

The Last Time (1992-1998)

Clash colored pencil drawn 1993


The last time I felt a warm rain I thought of your touch
The light sweet feel of it’s caress telling me why I miss you so much
The last time I saw the sky steak with the first rays of the sun I remembered your smile
The natural beauty of it slightly indescribable someplace beyond grace and style

The last time I heard thunder rock the sky I heard your voice
The majesty of it always stopped my thoughts and taken away my sense of choice
The last time I watched the ripples of a lake I remembered that you weren’t rally mine
I can watch you move without anyway of changing your course and pretend that it’s just fine

The last time I saw a bird take flight I felt that fragile emotion that holds me to you
I understood that as solid and on the ground as it is, it could one day fly away too
The last time I watched a candle burn I realized that I never wanted this to end
But I couldn’t deny that we could be gone, easily whiffed out in the next strong wind

The last time you kissed me, I felt the sadness in your heart
I remember well because it was the first time your kiss had ever been tart
The last time we made love I saw the hesitance in your eyes
Something about how you looked at me made me want to set you free and cut all ties

The last time you laughed with me is such a distant memory it can’t be recalled
I know when it came to mind how unhappy you were my skin crawled
Amazing how it’s all so vivid now, after everything I can catch every sign
Funny how now it actually makes sense that you said goodbye when I saw you that last time

Sunday, August 10, 2014

My Serenity (1992-1998)

Self Portrait in colored pencil 1994

Heaven and hell wrapped into one
Peace held in check by the power of the sun
My life, my love, my form of exquisite ecstasy
If only you could understand what its like for me
To hold this gift within my soul never to leave
Held in myself so string and tightly it’s hard to believe
Everyday I take my joy and share its grace
From the voice in my throat to the smile on my face
Every time I move, every step I take
From every tilt of my head to every sound I make
Lives in color the proof of my joy
In full light that can never be called coy

What is my life, my peace and my constant company
It is the music in my soul that’s my serenity

Pulled from the sky in the shapes of stars and the face of the moon
With the awe inspiring regality of a delicate rose in bloom
The feeling of touching the sky and finding it soft as silk
The sensation of holding wind as it runs like milk
Take me life but give me my song
Without the music life would seem wrong
Take my heart, but leave me my voice
No heart is needed when life is no longer your choice

Bound together by something far stronger than fate
It seems that music is my soul mate

Behind my eyes exists a separate entity
There lives my soul with music as my serenity

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Not Another Bodice Ripper - The Case for Serious Romance

THE INTRODUCTION
Romance in general has always prescribed to formulas. Ask any literary agent who religiously sticks to what sells, and any aspiring romance novelist that would like to change things up. Romance novel trends seem to hate change more than any other genre. It is ironic then that it is the category of fiction that needs a makeover the most. However not truly in style, just in the context this style is delivered and perceived.

THE ISSUE
Romance has always suffered from a fallacy of perception as the people who don't actually read the genre seem to have the most to say about their inefficiency as a viable form of fiction. Yet in their vaulted wisdom of what is literary genius, and what is the lowest common denomination of literary fair, I must broach some fallacies of logic. Most high brow fiction involves some version of a love affair. The difference is usually how sexual interactions are portrayed if they are even portrayed.

THE COMPETITION
I think of some proverbial heavyweights of fiction such as Charles Dickens, Earnest Hemingway, and even Jane Austen. In their stories they seem to have very austere, pre-described, and idealized versions of love being portrayed. This is in some terms a 'clean' ethereal based love that only leaves a mess of the tongue and not of the person in a literal sense. The characters generate more passion for misplaced ideas than they do for the presence of another. Is it this sense of high dungeon that produces literary excellence?

In some instances in Hemingway's work for example there are clear overtones of a consuming misogyny as women can be easily trapped in a box and label of a mother, or a whore. It's always painfully Freudian when they end up as both, and thus rendered perfect. Yet this somehow manages to always be observed as part of the literary genius. The analogous representation of the purity of story because of the personalization of sexuality that is hardly ever actually realized just theorized.

THE THEORY
In some ways I believe the bias towards romance is a much deeper seated issue of humanity's perception of itself. The baser instincts of mating that romance points out are seen as 'immature' and 'unrefined' for many. Physical desire is usually seen as an indication of a simple beast instead of a hallmark of one in tune with the nature of whom and what it actually is. Human beings are mammals, and in many situations that animal instinct and urge is much more reliable in choosing a mate than a pros and cons list. The feeling is that romance makes absurd assumptions about this level of attraction and magnetism. That this 'animal' urge cannot be the basis to eventually grow into a deep and abiding love because love is something of a human nature, and not an animal one.

People with pets will tell you how well animals know love. Better sometimes than other human beings. They don't go with logic that their love will be returned. They operate on instinct, sometimes presenting themselves to an owner unsolicited on the street. This is how they love. Why is the idea that human love can be similar so seemingly odd? Or maybe they just have issues with the sex.

THE ANSWER
Love is a personal endeavor no matter how universal television commercials would like it to seem. The nature of it is idealized for some, and wide open for others. The truth is when writing about something as profoundly intimate as love, it is really bad form to try and relate love in another voice or fashion other than your own. The truth and charm to a story comes from that bit of truth that is included. That bit of truth is the relatable aspect of any story. This is the core of your own voice as a writer. Regardless of how many people 'understand' your character's plight or not, the truth of the situation will ring forth and give the story just the push it needs to really fly.

With that in mind it is very bad form for generalists to assume that a certain plotline or story premise is in line with any pre-described social agenda. The liberation of women was just that, liberation. Liberation is the right to make choices. A woman can decide if she would like to be a public figure or a private one. A woman can choose to vote, bear children, and get married or not. The claim that the creation of or reading of romance somehow 'tricks' women into believing in self destructive rhetoric is almost more offensive than any other misogynic claim as it actually feeds into the myth that women are incapable of processing thought beyond what they know to be a fictitious account.

In laymen's terms, the claim in essence says that a grown woman is not capable of separating fantasy from reality. This is a claim usually attached to mental illness, and honestly makes light of conditions suffered by those who have legitimate hormonal imbalances, injuries or birth defects that are associated with mental illness. Reading romance is not an illness. Also it no more detracts from feminist prose as it would add to it. With that being said, no romance is the same. Like all forms of entertainment and media there are levels of content. No two books actually read the same.

The romance formula is very easy to follow. Usually two people, and in recent entries sometimes more, have a great potential for a romantic relationship. They must confront each other and often times the results are not initially positive. That is because of individuality. This is an aspect of romance that is explored more than it is in some of its traditional fiction contemporaries. You have the dichotomy of a relationship as opposed to the relationship being a side car to the dichotomy of the story. In the end the essence of the story is to confront relationship boundaries and expose them. This is a very emotional plane of existence that can sometimes hold the same trauma as a tragedy. And it should. Love is a life changing event. Seeking to experience it, and be bound to another person for all time is also a life changing event. As far as I know not a single life changing event has ever gone quietly and without lessons in humility and shame. These are human emotions that bear the weight in most situations. Yet in love they are the core of what this entanglement is about.

The way a writer creates this is wide open. This sense of growing affection and intimacy is developed from one thing and one thing only, seeing the person for who they are and loving them because or despite it. This is a truth that romance novelists understand that is rarely examined in most contemporary literature where relationships seem to be of convenience and not of necessity. Others are forced attachments where the characters are bound by seemingly invisible tendrils of emotion that are strong enough to bond yet not strong enough to carry the story.

To some degree the emergence of more acceptable contemporary popular fiction, and the need to be perceived a certain way by others has taken the blush from the rose as far as sweeping love relationships are concerned. Romance novels have long been the butt of literary jokes and recently in a twisted parody of art imitating life some have even endeavored to live up to this reputation of being incomprehensible smut with bad punctuation and grammar. But what are the far reaching consequences to this? This seeming end to fairytale as it were that now blocks the heart from even seeking some idealized contentment. Is it this lack of 'romance' being taken seriously in day to day life that has enabled a lack of respect for sex, marriage, and all romantic relationships? Has the 'replaceable' mate taken the place of the 'irreplaceable' mate?

Today more than ever in a world of revolving doorlike changes we need the purity of actual romance.

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

The Phoenix

Sometimes, at those times, I know where this road will lead
And then times, after the time, I realize that I never knew,
Perhaps, by chance, a time will come that tells it’s own story
Mayhap by circumstance the story will prove true, after a time
Poet, yes, prophet, maybe, human being always
The story of the journey of a soul through time
The definition of grace and age that only time itself can define
Visions of the future, plagued by guilts of the past
A past that still remains unclear itself, but time has given it wings
It floats by me in instances of everyday life, in the eyes of an old woman
In the laughter of a child, the concern of a parent
The ramblings of a lunatic that makes sense to the parts of me that still listen
To the rustle of wind, howling of it through leaves and branches
A growth of immeasurable worth, have I always been this understanding
Have I always been this naïve, this out of control of the fates that guide me?

And in the end there he stands:  is it him/ or what I want to believe is him?
A shadow of a human being I helped create, I helped destroy
Can I make him whole again; will that ever be his own desire his own will?
Without him wanting, without him needing completion, I will never achieve my destiny
So time again rules over all, time will tell, as always, what God has in store
Can he be whole; the question plagues my mind and every waking hour
Was this what I truly asked for what I thought would complete my journey?
In the wrecked sorrow of his heart, in the shadowed void of his soul,
Is there no presence or even a need for life, for light, for rebirth?

The Phoenix is there hidden beneath the pain, biding it’s time to grow and share it’s unending warmth.
It’s light flickers behind his eyes in moments of unguarded expressions.
In gestures of selfless sacrifice, in voices alive with love
Can this bird be freed, can the unattainable power it holds be liberated for all to bathe in
And sometimes, in those times, I know that it cannot
And then times, after the time, I know that there is no choice, it will be freed
Will it’s freedom spell his destruction, seed my rebirth
Will it’s power seal his fate and justify mine,
Perhaps by chance, his ache has become mine, and I myself I am pulled to lie beside the bird
Desperately filling it’s lungs with my own air; shamelessly fanning it’s fire with my own
Surrounded by darkness, numbed by a cold that should not exist.
Mayhap by circumstance, it will rise, through the grace of God and the blind heart of a fool that didn’t know that there are no second chances
Faith stands, bringing with it the power from the Creator, holding in His All-Knowing hand the seeds to eternal bliss
Bringing with it the awe-inspiring power of love, let’s wait for time to catch up
For it waits for no one, but when it comes, the Phoenix will rise, it will flame, and it will burn


Wednesday, January 22, 2014

When Alex met Thomas

Excerpt from Sandra's Social:

This morning was the clearest Alex’s mind had been since the accident.  He focused on the girl Danielle as she brought over his breakfast.  She looked like she fell right out of the 17th century. Her skin looked like cappuccino froth dusted lightly with cinnamon.  The long plain beige skirt she was wearing looked made of cotton.  The simple white top was too big for her as the large scoop neck toyed with falling off her creamy lightly freckled shoulders with every movement. It was held to her form by a simple white apron cinched tight to her small waist. She had a brown bandana tied around her gold-laced brown hair holding it out of her face.  With no makeup, and only a freshly washed face with broad evenly placed features, golden amber eyes sparkled mischievously with an even broader smile.
“Morning Beautiful; here’s some eats for you.  Hope this day finds you blessed.”
“Who is he to you?”
Danielle gave him an odd look as she placed the steaming plate of eggs and hash on the table near his bed. “That was a complete sentence. This day sees you blessed indeed.”
“Answer the question.”
“My name’s Danielle by the way.  He told me you were Alex, -”
“Please, answer the question.”
“My brother, now can we move on to more civilized conversation?”
Alex merely regarded her with hooded eyes.
“I suppose that’s a no.  Pity I figured you had something interesting to say.”
“When is Glendel coming back?”
She shrugged as she turned, and started to leave the room.
Alex stewed for a second over Danielle’s uncooperative nature.  He then took a mental detail of his physical condition.  He moved both legs successfully, but the truth would come when he tried to put weight on those legs.  His right shoulder was definitely wrenched.  He had pain in various places; his face, his chest, and back. It was safe to say he truly hurt from head to toe.  He was staring at his feet dangling over the end of the bed when Glendel casually strolled into the room.
“Done with your vacation? Talk about an inopportune time to take a break.” His gold eyes pinned Alex where he lay as the deep smooth voice of the man filled the room.
Glendel stood at the doorway in pretty much the same ensemble he had been in when they had met three weeks ago, but without the hat.  His brown hair was greasy, and lay flat to his skull as if he had been wearing a hat before he came to the bedroom.  
Alex really wasn’t in the mood for this man’s off color sense of humor, and said so. “I can’t say that I’m in a good frame of mind for your particular brand of wit.”
Glendel arched a brow mockingly. “Why that was slightly British. Odd from a big slant eyed Bolshevik like you. What’s your story Stefanov?”
Alex merely glared at the man.
“Okay, I see you woke up in a grand mood.” Glendel commented as he went over to a chair that was by the bed.  It was the perch that Danielle had maintained during her vigil over his prone body.
“Where’s McNeil?” Alex slanted his dark blue eyes at Glendel.
“Back to his charmed lifestyle.” His expression appeared bland at most.
Alex stared at the ceiling as he thought about the places Shane McNeil could hole up. “How did the rest of the IRA feel about Shane’s statement?”
“They claim it, but I happen to know firsthand that it leaves a sour taste in the mouth of many of them.  They want Shane dead.” This was accompanied by an even blander look on his face considering the subject.
Alex fixed Glendel with a hard look. “How do you know so much?  How long have you been working this?”
“Since it started it seems. This is my home Alex. I see to what’s mine.” Glendel ended fiercely, his tone defying the unresponsive features of his face.
“Will you get in my way when I go after McNeil?”
“Not at all, I intend to help.  Unfortunately if I want to maintain my inside you’ll have to be the one to kill McNeil, and then I’ll do the right thing, and kill you.”
“You’re breaking my cover.” Alex jerked wanting to sit up, but flinching instead, and staying prone.
“Yes I want you out of Ireland mate,” he said deadpan.
“My orders-,” Alex started raising his voice.
“Are superseded by mine,” was said softly, but with force.
“No fucking way will I just roll over and let you kick me out.”
“You aren’t being given a choice in the matter.  I’m offering you plenty by giving you McNeil, and a fake death. I could give you neither.” Glendel’s eyes gleamed with malicious intent. The most expression he had showed yet.
Alex frowned at the man that he was quickly beginning to not like one bit. They were on the same side. Why was he being told to run home with his tail between his legs?  It wasn’t even from his superior, but by some CIA field agent. It made no bloody sense.  Then realization dawned on him.  The man being in the right place at the right time, his unreadable countenance, and obvious community ties.
“You’re first wave intel.”
Glendel’s answering smile was dark and cold. “Now you’re catching on laddie; much bigger things here than the IRA.”
Alex closed his eyes in frustration, but knew that he had to heed the man before him.  



Friday, February 22, 2013

That Divine Spark


I dared love once to show me the truth.  Face me head on show me what the mettle of love is and can be.  It starts with the wind.  Always it starts with the wind.  The touch of that which cannot be seen can only be felt. Always it caresses my skin pulling my mind towards you.  I imagine your hands live in that space.  As it ruffles my skirt and pulls at my hair.  I turn towards it like a flower to the sun.  Thirsty for another breath of you on my skin in my hair felt and not seen.  It seems at the oddest times you are in fact always there.

Never dare love to show you its face because it ends up being your own ravaged by tears.  Always tears fall like rain in joy in sadness in grace in pain.  The storms are the best with the drops of rain and the whip of the wind.  The build is where the truth lies. . anticipation.  It brews slowly softly within to break its wrath across this plane.  I feel the rise in me the instinct to meet it.  You can only survive that which you bear yourself to brunt and even then it is merely a mercy that survival is possible. It breaks open, shattered in bolts of lightning across the sky. The sky bleeds, the earth feeds.

Elemental and sublime in the heart of knowledge I remain complete in the hearth of my emptiness I surrender to defeat.  A force of nature that has rend and set asunder all earth, hell and heaven in a calamity of indisposed inevitable unbearable music.  The gnashing of teeth it’s called, the lamenting, the unfulfilled moaning. We forget in chaos the Universe was born.  Only in chaos will such marvels come into being. It lies in the clash. It lives in the fight. The push for solidarity against the desire for union.

The will of destiny is the mating of chance and karma. They dance around each other like pulses of violent intensity with passionate disregard.  They meet and recoil, the joining painful, sweet, yielding, hard, impossible, inevitable. One carries the light, the other bourn by the dark. Its completion that the space calls for.  Meeting of different ends to form a cohesive whole.

What is born lives in the soulful coupling of two never meant to meet but must know each other. The boundaries of commitment unresolved, unrefined, primordial and absolute. As one sees the other hears, as one inhales the other exhales, as one touches the other feels. The answer is not clear, or spoken but felt.  It moves in the subconscious that causes the belly to pull, the heart to skip. A knowing that has nothing to do with logical comprehension matching to identical pairs.  This is the way of nature filling in what was left unfilled. For each open space there is matter to align perfectly to it. Fingers lace, skin meets blends joined.   Separation an improbable and probable instance cursed to join in that moment and walk different planes in all others.

Forever together, forever apart. Bound in the endless dance of existence.

Friday, October 21, 2011

True Altruism


In book one of my W.A.R.M. Front series the heroine and the hero share a very interesting if not integral belief.  That belief is in altruism.  Whenever I write books I like to talk about things that are near and dear to my heart.  In very many ways I doubt anything is as near or dear to me as altruism. 

Growing up my family depended very much on the kindness of strangers.  I remember at least 2 Christmases very clearly that would've been awful if the local church had not been kind enough to give us a Christmas dinner and toys for my brother and me.  I wonder about how different my childhood would've been if these services had not been available and how I would be a different person now from those experiences.  And I wonder how the general public feels about charity and altruism.  Even more so I wonder if those who have been fortunate enough either through recognition of hard work or by virtue of luck to be highly financially successful in this life understand what sharing this does for their soul.  Not just giving money to the Red Cross once a year, but actually getting their hands dirty and watching a life transform.  

For those who have lost their way and lost meaning in their own lives, it is restored through finding meaning in another’s life. Altruism is in many ways the most selfish act I know and all the more lovely for it.  It is a process of healing another that brings the healing to the healer. By opening the most nurturing and cradling parts of yourself to others you give that part of you what it really needs, air to breathe.   By burying it in yourself you are only suffocating it, depriving it of sunlight, food, and water.  The things it needs to grow.

This comes on the heels of reading something yesterday that literally made me cry.  I've always been a fan of the music of Bon Jovi. Well now I'm a fan of the man Jon Bon Jovi because of this wonderful contribution he has made to his hometown.  In a nutshell he and his wife have a foundation that gives back to their community. This is something that I believe is an absolute must if you have any amount of great success, and is a must in smaller quantities even if you don't. 

Their latest endeavor is a revamping of the 'soup kitchen' concept.  Historically the soup kitchen is a necessary thing that brings with it a multitude of soul destroying poisons.  However this version includes something that I believe people forget to give to those in need. Dignity. This is a pay as you can restaurant that gives a healthy meal in a clean well received environment.

The full story can be found here: Soul Kitchen, Jon Bon Jovi

I can't wait for the next trip I take to the area so I can eat a meal there and leave $100 on the table.

I know it stands to reason that if you are this down on your luck, beggars can't be choosy.  But this is in essence the problem.  Beggars should be choosy.  It is this sense of self-worth that propels a person to make the necessary changes in their life to actually start a positive shift in their existence.

I remember being ashamed of my upbringing when I was younger.  I never had the best toys on the market, was lucky to have the toys I did have.  My mother always made sure that we had clean clothes, food, and a roof over our head no matter what she had to do to accomplish this.  If it meant swallowing her pride and asking for aide then so be it.  Her children were worth it.  However as a young child all I had was a perpetual sense of not being 'good enough' to have things other children had.  And my mother's income or lack thereof became a definer for people as to what I could or could not accomplish.

I remember being accepted to my high school and then told in so many words that children from my socio-economic background usually didn't last long because they felt like outcasts from other students who sometimes had very privileged backgrounds.  They could afford the things I could not.  Being a visual artist is very expensive business and somehow my mother made sure that even if I couldn't have the best supplies, I could create art. She didn't let me feel guilty about costing the family so much money because she saw this for what it was; dignity for me.  And she knew that I very much needed to have that if I was ever going to achieve anything.

As the first high school graduate, first college degree holder, and soon to be the first graduate degree holder in my family I can look back and see how unattainable these goals would've been if I didn't have my dignity to see it out. What people from other backgrounds don't understand is the sense of helplessness someone who is deeply impoverished has.  When you are in poverty your living conditions and standards are much lower than that of people in the middle class.  You juggle bills, paying them by importance as opposed to paying them because they are due.  You never have enough money to pay all of your bills and trying to live below the means necessary to account for the amount of money you make leads to consequences like not being able to buy the proper clothes for the job you work. Not being able to secure transportation to it, or not being able to eat enough to have the energy to work. And all the while everyone around you blames you for your inability to be better, to be more.  The United States poverty lines are just a bad joke that accounts for an economy that was thriving over 3 decades ago without truly accounting for inflation, technology, and the changing standards of basic human needs.

The issue is when another bill collector has called you a deadbeat, your boss is too cheap to give you a raise implying that your work effort is not worth this level of finance, and you don't know how you're going to feed yourself or your children tonight, you start to believe some unfortunate things about yourself.  When you work yourself to the bone with multiple jobs, no health insurance, living paycheck to paycheck and another financial burden presents itself as an emergency; you are willing to do almost anything to free yourself from the panic, the horror, and the rage this gives you.  The last thing on your mind is your dignity, because if it will make you feel like you are accomplishing something to sell it off, you most likely will, and very few people in similar situations would blame you for it.

While some may say all you have is your pride, you must realize that people in truly tragic situations don't have that any more.  Pride proved to be too expensive in the face of hunger. And dignity isn't allowed to be a thought if you want to maintain shelter. There are those miracle stories.  Those people who despite the odds managed to maintain both and succeed.  However they are the minority not the majority.  Self-worth is a commodity in our world that has had a definite price tag placed on it.  It is now a beast that involves status, income, and has little to do with moral values and community building. Dignity has always been this nearly indefinable mix of human frailty and strength.  It can be used to break you and to lift you high.  Sometimes within the same breath.

I build this case to state this. The humility it takes for a person who is very successful to look at someone less fortunate, and offer a hand as opposed to a handout is immense, and should be treasured for the miracle that it is. The difference is in the old Chinese fish metaphor, give a man a fish and he'll eat for a day, teach him how to fish. . . you know how it goes.  This is the act of showing someone through the care you have taken to prepare something for them, their worth to you as a human being.  And when someone can't manage to build self-worth and dignity for themselves, it is the job of others to show them how it's done through our own actions. The world is our community if we don’t care enough to take care of it, who else will? No matter how isolated we try to make ourselves, no one is here alone and if you are in a position to help others, you must understand this and help.

I give men who have Superman tattoos a hard time.  It’s because usually they are self-involved delusional braggarts that have placed on this false persona to fulfill some missing need within themselves.  My issue is that Superman is a hero and saves lives.  If you aren’t doing something similar you haven’t earned his colors.  Jon Bon Jovi is earning those colors.

I hope acts of true altruism become an epidemic.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Online Dating Jazz


Ah the magical wonderful world of online dating.  I've realized that it’s like a seasonal sport.  There are peak times and lulls.  Right now is apparently one of my peak times.  Probably has something to do with my something being trined with my Venus, Ascendant, who knows. I have a couple of profiles that I leave open here and there because it pleases me.  I used to forget about them until someone messaged me and then I would reluctantly pull one down.  Then I decided to start letting them stay unchanged in cyber space as like a letter to myself. Each one catalogues an interesting phase in my life and how I felt about men, dating, and love.  Believing in love is very important for a romance novelist, so I often use these sites to challenge the belief in love others have.

Over the years I've learned a few things about online dating habits, especially where I'm concerned.  Very rarely does anyone who habitually dates online expect to meet the other person. I think it has a little to do with many people not looking at all like the picture they used for scoring a date.  I think it has more to do with the interesting relationships we as human beings develop with technology such as our personal computers. I think to the writings of Sherry Turkle and how she has managed to admit something that we as human beings seem not to be able to do just yet. This is the thought that a computer is a very personal and intimate device.  Just think in a day how many times you touch one in comparison to touching another person. As I type this, I feel how my fingertips brush over the keys, lightly with just enough pressure to cause it to react. I've conditioned myself to respond to it in a certain way.  And unlike people, if you manage it in just the right way it will always do exactly what you want precisely without that loss of interpretation between you and what someone else sees or hears. It builds this shell of safety and comfort for people that the harsh reality of an actual human being shatters.

I think it becomes more so for those who use computers to create art.  Writers like me can easily spend hours with one and not even notice if anyone else is even in the room.  This thing enables our thoughts and tales, our stories and fantasies.  It gives them breath, and saves our favorite moments for us to relive over and over again.  It allows us to go in, and easily fix our errors in punctuation, sentence structure, and even flawed storytelling logic.  Like our stories we build online worlds and communities, such as this blog site, and it rewards us by offering us this additional mask to hide behind so that no one can get close enough to truly hurt us.  Just close enough to interact so we don't feel lonely, but without any of the potential hazards of interacting.  The graphic novel that was adapted to the movie Surrogates shows us a world where this idea is taken to an extreme.  However in many ways this idea has already been realized.

I've never really thought online dating was a good idea because the computer can't translate that moment of awareness, instinct, and presence that happens when you meet a person who you know has the potential to be a substantial part of your life. There is a pleasing anonymity to online dating that people have a tendency to not want to give up.  Whether out of fear of rejection, safety, or just not wanting to experience the awkwardness that accompanies meeting someone for the first time that you have spoken to many times, people have a tendency to chicken out. Many of the dates I have set up ended in me being stood up, cancelled on and never rein-checked, or flat out ignored when it was time to do more than have a casual chat on a random weekday night.

The pessimist would cite things like the other person cheating on someone else as the cause, or is actively trying not to cheat on someone else as the case maybe.  I think it has a lot more to do with the person being just human; a vulnerable creature that isn't always sure of themselves and is trying to find some measure of life that makes some sense. As human beings we seek fulfillment and it is up to us to determine whose fulfillment it will be. With this being the day after the death of Steve Jobs, and the irony of the topic I think I will dare and quote the late technology mastermind.

“Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma — which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of others’ opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.” Steve Jobs

In the end, when we create these online extensions of ourselves they somehow reflect the parts of us that we would like to show first and the most.  The process is showing yourself for interest and intent to the rest of the world. We show the parts that we think will appeal to others by either our own value systems or those of others. Which means that you have carefully outlined the parts of yourself you feel have little value or worth to others.  But really this is your truth of what you value most about who you are.

For me personally I have 3 online names, and they showcase all sides of me.  When I'm not Christina, who I am most of the time, I'm Suenammi, which of course is a play on tsunami.  This name was given to me by my first boyfriend and probably the only man to truly accept me as me with whatever that entails. To this day he forces me to never be anyone else but me. The nickname reminds me to stay true to me. Analise is my Renaissance and Medieval Faire name for that wicked side of me that would prefer life be simpler and we made our own rules and laws.  She's that side that loves to play with swords and drink all night in dives with gypsies and pirates. This side believes in natural order, justice by my own hand, and the will of Fate in all matters.  She believes in magic and the divine, in fairytales and ghost stories. While I write under the core of remembering who I am, Suenammi, it is Analise that spins the tales.

So as I consider these multiple mistresses housed in the form known as Christina, I realize why online dating and I are so incompatible.  So few people make the choice to be exactly who they are no matter who that may be whether people can tell or not. The temptation is to be who you want to be and hope that it becomes true. So many people are letting someone else's truth speak for them and not letting their instincts guide them.  And thanks to the way online personas are developed without the least bit of screening, the ones you should stay clear of have been tagged before being released back into the wild. So I have compiled a small list of self-identifiers in your online moniker that will notify me that we are most likely incompatible despite your confidence otherwise. I advise all women who attempt to date online to do the same.

(Ahem) Any references to: money, assumed sexual prowess, active drug habits, illegal career choices, racial exploitation and or skin color descriptors, confrontational behavioral warnings (i.e. TooManyGames), being a living breathing stereotype, overt religious sayings, people who you are not, all none geeky fictional characters (My first nickname is a natural disaster. It would be too hypocritical to rule out fictional character references completely.  However, steer clear of all Supermans. Just sayin'). 

Please note I will not in fact, 'hit you back."  And always the best way to start a conversation is "Hi" and not with the implication of doing me 'a favor'.

Always w/Love

Sue

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Celebrity Crisis


Confidence
I feel like I need to start this blog with a disclaimer because I'm going to talk about things that need to be clearly identified as not belonging to each other.  They are the differences between confidence and self-absorption. I am all about confidence.  Everyone should have it and everyone should display it.  I've been told I'm in fact much too modest.  Trust me I do this on purpose because the megalomaniacal beast that I hold at bay daily is no cake walk I assure you.  I try to channel that through my characters.  Let them be larger than life and I can just be me. 


I suppose I find myself wondering about the state of wealth and celebrity.  The wealthy are pretty obscure.  Very few people even know the names of the wealthiest people in the world.  They couldn't pick them out in a crowd, and can't easily identify their names in print or vocalized.  However celebrity is all the rage.  People can identify a celebrity without even trying, thus they become the image that is often associated with the wealthy.  Even pop cultural anarchists like myself can tell you a few basic tenets of modern pop culturalization. 

The best way to get press is to get caught doing something amoral by 'good' American citizen standards.  As an entertainer it is nearly impossible to not eventually do something that other people disapprove of.  Never underestimate the ability of people to do two things, misunderstand, and then judge what they never understood. The irony is that the best way to keep fame is to then somehow transcend what got people's attention in the first place. Which I believe is that crucial step between confidence and self-absorption. It’s 'I got away with it' syndrome.  It leads to a life of 'getting away with it' and expecting to always do so.  This is when the first inkling of "I'm better than you starts" to really cement itself.

Remember this story? I do!
Self-absorption starts with that one basic idea.  I am better than you.  Every case of it stems from that one primary thought. I've had brief brushes with celebrity and I hated it.  I hated it because this entity of celebrity can somehow prevent and hinder the ability of making true connections. My life has no meaning without true connections to other people.  It was hard for me to tell the difference between the truth as it was, and the truth as it was being presented as.  The biggest favor I ever did for myself was to discover the difference.  From time to time I still slip up.  But with less people involved in the process to snow me over for their own gain, it’s easier than it could've been.

The only aspect of celebrity that I didn't mind was the idea that financial woes would cease for myself and those I loved. However at what point does your financial success when combined with the specter of celebrity make you not see anything beyond yourself.  To be successful in any industry a certain level of personal choice and compliance has to be given up.  To be successful in a performance based industry this is multiplied by 10 because usually you aren't talking about just a job.  You are talking about doing something you are passionately in love with to a degree that it is a part of you.  You need it to exist more than you need breath. Sometimes that peak is very far away. So far in fact that people have to convince themselves beyond what is actually true to reach it.  Which means you have to negate reality as it is and replace it with one of your own (shameless Mythbusters steal).

So I test drove it.  This new reality for me was dark. It was filled with pitfalls and attacks.  An unending landscape of fire pits and terrifying creatures ready to snap your head off for fun.  I explore this idea more in a romance I'm writing featuring a Hollywood movie producer and a grassroots painter. It explores how alike they are yet how their choices made them seem so different from each other. Working on this again made me think about my own peccadilloes with fame, celebrity, and the price that I thought was too high to pay for the promise of money, glory, and popularity.

Overconfidence
I've never thought well of celebrities or people who needed and wanted fame.  That is my prejudice developed from people I've met and known in my past in addition to my disgust at the assumption they made that I was in fact just like them. I made assumptions about them based on my value system.  As unfair as that is, I do it because I realize they have done the same. The truth is I am just like them, we all are.  Some of us just channel it differently. But the core that makes someone choose to pursue fame and choose not to are basically identical.  The need to associate, develop, and ultimately belong to something. Always trying to find the formula to a happy fulfilling life. We just make different choices as to how to fulfill our core.

Celebrity Weddings
There were things that I attached to celebrity and fame because the actions others encouraged me to propagate in order to achieve it left very obvious victims. I never wanted to believe it was okay to look down on people.  I never wanted to think that some people just deserve less because I was able to achieve something considered 'more'.  I never wanted to be able to justify making ridiculous amounts of money and not starting a charity.  I never wanted my need to express my talent to mean more than human decency, kindness, and empathy.

The point is I never wanted to be able to ignore another person because I thought I was better than them.  I always think about the people who I know now that I most likely would not have met had I chosen a different path and what a grave loss that would be in my life.  Most importantly I never wanted to wrap myself in that cynical cocoon I was developing that didn't even allow grace in.  I wanted to remain human enough to understand the importance of humility. To ultimately keep the magic of meeting special people that the world for whatever reason ignores.  That feeling of discovering this perfect meadow that has somehow remained untainted by the filth of the world.

Yes this is that car
When I see that some rapper has blown $370,000 to destroy a car in a music video I cringe at what I could've become.  When a musician refuses to do a charity concert because they aren't getting paid I wonder why do they need more money.  They already have more than they need to live well. When I see music, art, dance leaving schools and very few of the people who benefitted from these programs care enough to do something about it, I wonder how can they claim to love what they do if they don't care enough to make sure that it always exists.  You can hear it in everything they do. I am better than you. And all I can think is I no longer care about anything you do.

Why?
Why does celebrity lead to this 'us versus them' mentality no matter what type of fame it is? This 'I as a celebrity cannot be bothered by you a regular person' nonsense.  I've meet people that aren't like that, but the majority abide by and prefer this separation that is in essence contributing to the class war that the wealthy is waging.  The extremely wealthy are using celebrity as their front line fodder. Celebrities bear the brunt of the criticisms for overt wealth and wealth flaunting practices. If celebrities would take a moment, and just be with 'regular' people they would be moved to discuss their plight and be less villianized.  But in this country our celebrities are sometimes even worse than our politicians.  Because for entertainment careers being a savvy politician is necessary for success.

Love word clouds
The question I could never answer, and was too afraid of losing myself to confront was this.  Is it even possible to retain any empathy, compassion, or reality when fame is your reality?  What would lead a character who is being victimized by his own fame into understanding the plight of a person on the other end of life?  In this case I choose magic.  A witch to be exact.  I wonder how their story will end?  Coming soon. . . .

Confidence courtesy of: http://danpetrosini.files.wordpress.com/2011/03/confidence.jpg





Word Cloud courtesy of: http://www.compassnt.com/Compassion_Quotes.html

Celebrity Weddings courtesy of:

Monday, August 8, 2011

The Next American Revolution


We live in a time where perception is becoming law.  You see it everywhere; in the government, on television, and in personal interactions with others.  But this to some degree can be said about all stages of humanity in its current Homo Erectus form.  Like all things, perceptions are mutable because no two people can have the exact same one.  We are greater for this, and in some ways worse for this.  In the end, different is better because it opens the doors to possibility, maybe, and the impossible. Perception accomplishes all of this.  In our age of instant information, perceptions travel faster.  At the speed of light even, which has to a large degree accelerated our rate of development, and our ability to ascertain our individual perceptions.  So we can just a quickly modify them.

Movie Poster
This thought process comes from watching a fascinating movie this weekend called Ruby's Bucket of Blood.  It was the story of a 1950s black woman in Louisiana who ran her own juke joint.  For people that don't know what a juke joint is, it's a speakeasy, a bar with musical entertainment. They were established by blacks in light of Jim Crow laws that barred blacks from white establishments.  So blacks created their own clubs.

The movie did the basic things and I was impressed by all of the stones the story and direction left unturned. They talked about segregation, homosexuality, spousal abuse, class within races, extended families. The most interesting aspect was the commentary about the different ways that people of color can discriminate against each other, and the way whites can as well.  They also dealt with a mentality and attitude that still exists to this day. They referred to it as 'slave' mentality.

Historically it has been thought of as the mental byproduct an enslaved people have to reject upon release.  The thought was it would take as many centuries to breed out as it took to breed in. But it is more than just a degree of perceived ownership, and not being able to make decisions regarding yourself or your children. It is more about a degree of perceived allowances in society.  What is acceptable and what is not acceptable as a person of color in a white world and vice versa? What is acceptable for a white person in a white world or a white person in a person of color world?

As I watched this movie I was startled to realize that most people who are not of color probably would not understand what the primary elements of this movie talked about because of context.  Meaning that if you are not a person of color who has experienced levels of discrimination you would have no idea what the underlying message was behind the movie.  In direct contrast there were aspects of being white that were confronted that most people of color would not be able to understand because they have not experienced that degree of discrimination that whites place on each other at times in regards to how to deal with people of color. And I wondered about that and the issues with not just perception, but with perspective and how these populations could ever find it with one another in such a short period of time.

Desegregation Protesters
The United States has gone through a myriad of changes in a few short centuries that other countries have taken nearly a 1000 years to sort through when you compare histories.  There are still people alive who remember Jim Crow laws and why they had to be followed.  My grandmother and mother are two of them.  This is when perspective becomes so very interesting.  The idea that I, a 34 year old woman in America, and anyone of my age group, has immediate family members that know of and willfully participated in the act of segregation and deemed it acceptable is a mind-blowing perspective if you really think about it. And while segregation was declared illegal in the 50's, then again in the 60s, with a series of subsequent laws as people searched for and found loopholes, the South was able to maintain it well into the 70's which was when I was born. Many people maintain that it is still very prevalent today.  Doubt me, check state report cards that break down academic achievement by race and note the ones that don’t have enough of a certain race to even rate it.  Schools are still segregated due to real estate markets and housing discrimination; another loophole for continued segregation that litigation is still dealing with. However, I see that despite that fact, my surroundings are a far cry from the world my mother grew up in. And even further still from the society my grandmother grew up in.  I find myself wondering at how I would've raised children in my mother's time.  Would I have raised them to fight, or would I have been fearful and raised them to survive?

Let me paint a picture for you. Some of you are mothers so this should be easy for you.  For those who are not just imagine. Try being a mother who has to deal with raising children in a world where even though the law has forbidden treating you and those like you badly, the people have made sure that they can continue with little or no penalty. On many occasions you have seen others hurt, beaten, falsely jailed. You yourself have been the victim of being denied jobs, denied good housing, and denied adequate medical care.  You don't know how you are going to keep your children alive without better pay, better food, and better medicine. Secretly you suspect that the system you have to work in would prefer that your children died. There were times when you heard people say as much. When you try to fight the injustice, on several occasions you are told that if you balk at this, your fate will be worse because people either don't want things to change or they are too weak to rock the boat.  But they all say you should be grateful for the scraps you have been given.  The ones in charge say none of you are worth it anyway. Stay in your place, and be grateful I don't take that from you too. How fearful are you as a mother with a son or daughter?  You decide that you have to train them to think and act in a certain way to insure that they survive.  You see, in a climate like this achieving is the least of your concerns.  Survival is the most important because you know that you have it better than those before you, so there is a chance that your children, their children will have it even better. But they have to manage to grow up and carry on. Just survive. So what manner of child would this raise?  What would be their goals and inclinations?  See the many, many ways that they would not coincide with the new reality they have been given that is so different from yours.

American Dream
This analogy works for all discriminated against populations and their reluctant oppressors.  Just insert the classification, race, social class, gender. The crux of all discrimination is a powerful group of people dictating what other people deserve, who deserves to give it to them, and why.  It’s bullying for adults.  Last I checked that wasn't supposed to be the American way.  Remember the American Dream; achieve and pull yourself up by your own bootstraps.  How do you manage that without boots I often wonder?  In this I mean food, shelter, medical care.  The basics. Despite that people have managed something. But how would you expect people to be who have been told that they can achieve, but only on the terms of others, and then blamed for their lack of achievement. It just becomes a fixed craps game where every roll is snake eyes because even if you somehow manage to 'do well' that was somehow given to you and not actually earned.


Even though it was called 'slave mentality' for blacks, the truth is other populations suffer and understand it so it isn't really a 'slave mentality', as it is a caste system mentality. And this caste mentality is felt by ALL in the society system. It is a series of ideas about health, lifestyle, culture, ideologies, wealth, success, meritocracy, class, race and gender that the American media and institution of government like to reinforce for population control. The importance of understanding this mentality is the key to a future America that can at least understand itself.  America right now is like an amnesiac schizophrenic.  It forgets all of its personalities as soon as it switches to another, and it can't recall the history of the one it's in.  It would be the highest of hypocrisy if the country knew what the word meant.

2010 Census Statistics
The truth is America is not equal, middle class blacks and Latinos still live in low income neighborhoods because they are barred from better ones fitting their income status.  America is not wealthy. There are wealthy people in America, about 10% to be exact.  America isn't mostly middle class; that is currently being wiped out by the greed of the wealthy.  America isn't democratic; states are currently putting in measures to prevent certain populations from voting.  America is not religiously tolerant.  Not a day goes by that someone on television isn't referring to or treating all Muslims like terrorists.  America is not peaceful. America has the most people incarcerated per capita than any country in the world (increased dramatically since the ‘war on drugs’ began in the early 80’s) and has been at war for the last 50 or so years on foreign shores.  America is not a melting pot or a salad bowl.  People are asserting their multicultural, multiracial status daily as more Americans are fitting under this distinction. Other global communities are reestablishing their communities in America. Populations are choosing to huddle together in distinct neighborhoods easily identified by their culture.

The other truth is that the only constant in life is change.  We are a country that has been divided by many issues.  Race, wealth and religion being the big three in my opinion. Race is a condition that is fixing itself if the rising production of mixed race children is any indication. Hopefully soon all children will be just what they are . . American children. No disclaimer, no classification. Wealth, another problem weeding itself out as the middle class vanishes and the opulence of the wealthy is being uncovered.  Soon they will be brought to task for the systematic stealing of money and resources from the American public. Because when the wealthy can no longer squeeze money out of us, they will turn on each other.  Their greed demands more. Someone wealthy enough to have power over this will stop them as they reach for their wealth. And religion, in light of recent events we see clearly how criminalized none Christians are in the media, while Christians are treated as 'lone gunmen' that don't represent all of Christianity.  Amazing that this isn't the case for Muslims. We define politicians citing religious right as the future of this country as lunatics. 

Human
What the media and government seems to not understand is that despite their careful cultivation of these issues to try and panic people into a frenzy, America has been giving them its own answer the entire time.  We need change, and whether they like it or not, we will have it. Even if we have to create it ourselves.




American Dream courtesy of http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-BoWTok3w1s0/TZCgx45BlPI/AAAAAAAAADg/lMsL07ezjzo/s1600/20081123_barack_obama_comic_01.gif


Human courtesy of http://www.mixedracestudies.org/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/2010/05/MultiracialIdentityMovie.jpg