Life is an adventure and most of the time it’s safe to say that I get frustrated with my particular adventure. whether it be that my job is stressing me out, my meds aren’t working, and sometimes I just plain feel like I’ve stalled out.

I have to keep reminding myself that this isn’t it, it’s not the end of the line. I am more than I am right now… and yet, it’s hard to remember even that much. I’m 23 and I live with my parents. That feels, yet it’s where my life has led me to.

I’ve been trying to think lately about when people stopped asking me what I wanted to be when I grew up. When did I stop thinking about that? When did I resign myself to being a cog in some corporate machine instead of a space ballerina or a Mac n cheese critic? When did I stop dreaming? Over the last few years I’ve been trying to figure out where my passion went, what passion even is and let me just say that those are some of the most difficult answers in the world to come up with.

I’m sure that I’m not the only person in the world in this stage of life right now. That stage where we have just a little bit of save the world left in us that the overlords haven’t managed to crush out of us yet, fighting desperately not to give in. Personally, I feel like every day I get a little bit closer to that. A little bit closer to putting away my pencils and paper, closing that word processor for the last time… I think maybe I was too young, not ready enough to graduate college when I did. Three years was too fast. I feel like I skipped the tutorial and went straight into the game.

It’s like all those heroes that go off a quest and get lured into some kind of faery trap. They get stuck in a paradise and years and centuries pass and they never leave because they don’t realize what’s happening. They’re too comfortable where they’re at and though they know they should be continuing on their quest, they’re still there on Calypso’s island…. or whatever place comes to your mind. By the time the hero escapes, if they don’t die first, it’s either too late or they’ve lost many a year without realizing it, thinking it’s been only a few days or hours.

It’s a terrifying thing to be self aware in that portion of your quest, depression and anxiety don’t help either – they just cloud your judgement throughout the whole ordeal. You’d almost rather the siren had you completely under her spell so that you don’t realize what’s really happening to you… what you are doing to yourself.

I’m starting to fight. I’m indecisive about it, but I’m starting to put together a picture of my life. I’m starting to struggle against the siren’s hold. The call of peace and cushioned comfort.

Part of that is latching onto my faith, and part of it is trying to move forward. Not fighting the siren directly, but pulling away from her. For me that is taking the shape of getting my portfolios together, writing and art. I’m hoping that by January next year I’ll be able to start submitting again to magazines and contests after I’ve had some time to get things together. I’m getting Xanadu together and I’m getting materials ready to put in applications for art school, get a second bachelors, and I’m going to apply for some masters programs while I’m at it, hopefully start in fall of 2020 at the latest. I’m going to try and get further in my writing. I’m starting to formulate what I want my life to look like.

I want to write, that’s an integral part of who I am, always has been. I also want to draw and paint. I want to be an illustrator. I want to illustrate stories for children, teens, young adults, and adults, whatever I write I want to be able to illustrate it and strengthen it with other forms of storytelling. I’m such an unfocused person that I don’t want to do only one thing. I don’t want to settle for one of my interests. I want to meld them and make them work together, enough moving parts and my brain will shut up and just work. That’s the kind of person I am.

I’m taking an online art course right now and I’m looking into local classes and programs as an adult learner. Even if I don’t get a degree in it I think I might benefit from doing some kind of program or class. I’m also looking for a local writing group. It would be nice to get together with other writers and talk shop, get encouragement and help with tricky bits.

The world is a big place and I’m hoping to explore it a little more and maybe brighten it up with a few good stories.


Why I Write

I write because I have stories that need to be told.
I write because I can’t do anything else.
I write because I have a voice and I want the world to hear it.
I write because I have worlds inside of me waiting to get out.
I write because I can’t process the world any other way.
I write because I am lost.
I write because I feel alone.
I write because I don’t understand.
I write because I want to learn
I write because I know someone will need my story one day.
I write because I am a writer.
I write because I want to change the world.
I write because I am afraid.
I write because I am sad.
I write because I am happy.
I write because I am angry.
I write because I love it and I love it because I hate it…

Writing is the hardest thing in the world. In writing you learn things about yourself that you never wanted to learn. Things that you never knew were important to you. You learn to see your deepest fears and your greatest passions side by side. You see straight to your very soul and you open it up for the entire world to see. You have to do unpleasant things to serve your creativity. You have to sacrifice your very sanity to gain it back. There is nothing more draining and rejuvenating than writing a story that demands to be told.

Writing is a mistress that kisses you with passion and heat, stealing your very breath away before she places a gun beneath your jaw and cocks the hammer, pulling back to gaze at you seductively as she trails her other hand down your chest. You feel all the warmth leave your extremities as your heart tries to beat its way out of your very chest. She smiles at you, letting you know that she can feel it too, your arousal – and your fear – and the hope that you might experience that breathless, warm, passionate kiss just one more time before she pulls the trigger.

Author’s note: This is what I keep in the front of every journal and I read this periodically when I’m getting frustrated with my work. I wrote it in college and it serves as a reminder to myself why I do what I do.

I’m not Feeling Well so Here’s What’s Happening in my Head because I am Incapable of True Creativity when I Feel like This

I don’t feel well tonight, decided not to go to a Kid’s Ministry Meeting because of it but I don’t want to sleep. It’s been a while since I posted anything here so I figure it’s time for a thought dump.

For the last two or three days I’ve been in this fog. I went to the county fair both Friday and Saturday. Friday to treat my mom for her birthday, and Saturday I went to the demolition derby with friends.

I do not understand the attraction of watching a bunch of cars crash into each other on purpose. I watched one girl get carried off the track and put into an ambulance, and I watched one vehicle completely burst into flames. Then a few others just smoke so much that you couldn’t see the field. Watching the crowd was even worse. They enjoyed the brutal crashes and the things that might possibly kill a person more than I could understand and when we were waiting for them to pull the girl from her car to get her unconscious body into an ambulance they were speculating about whether or not she were going to be missing limbs or how bad she was hurt as if it were just another evening’s entertainment, a scripted part of the show.

For one thing, I didn’t realize how many demolition derby fans we had in this county. For another I apparently just don’t have enough red neck in me to enjoy that sort of thing. I just kept flashing back to the one not so bad car accident I had. I lived, the car is still running, and you can’t even tell it was in an accident, but my creative brain has an ability to latch onto details as well as enough knowledge of physics that the scenario can play out a thousand and one terrifying and brutally violent things that could have happened instead of what did happened.

And all I could really think about, watching the crowd and watching the cars crash into each other was about the Romans, whom I’ve been researching for a story I’ve been brainstorming. It reminded me so much of the whole bread and circuses thing at the end of the Roman Empire. Especially when the announcer/referee guy used the word Gladiator to describe the cars. That was exactly what it was. It was a gladiator arena and the people watching seemed to have lost all sense of the world outside of the destruction in front of them.

The world has been bothering me a lot lately. There are so many thins that are just plain wrong with it. People are dying, being refused help, refusing help, hurting each other for no reason, oppressing and being just generally unkind towards others for no reason other than that they can.

I turn on the news and all I see is people bashing one another, politicians trying to cover up one scandal or another, people complaining about situations but not doing anything about them.

I hear and see so many hypocritical points of view. All I want to do it lose myself in a gladiator style battle, and forget for a little while about all of these problems, but God didn’t make me with that ability. Instead, He made me with a brain that latched on to just about everything and remembers it like nobody’s business.

I got a new job finally. I’m out of the one that was trying to kill me and I’m in a better one now, but I’m still confused and frustrated by so many things. The world makes me angry.

I’m on meds now that are helping me to make sense of my emotions, and I’m getting better at being an adult and that is making me restless. I feel like I should be doing more, but I also feel like I’m just not passionate enough, like I lack the confidence to function beyond my current lot in life. It feels almost like I’ve given in to the bread and circus lie – just not the same way as everyone else.

In Kids church this summer we’ve been talking about confidence – living like you believe what God says is true. I mean, actually living it, speaking out about it, acting on your faith instead of keeping things quiet and to yourself.

Maybe it’s just because I don’t feel well right now, but this lack of confidence in anything makes me frustrated with myself. I’ve had more than one person I know completely quit writing, art, creating in general. There are people I know from high school who were incredibly talented artists and they don’t create anymore.

I hae friends who are having kids with guys that don’t love them, or only pretend to love them, they’re drinking, probably getting high, doing things that are just generally damaging to their physical and mental health, people who had such bright futures who are throwing it all away.

Then there are the ones that are moving forward with their lives in a positive direction. I feel like people look at them and then look at me and just think I’ve stalled out. Yet again, probably the not feeling well thing talking there, but it’s a genuine concern of mine.

You know, I don’t really know what I want to do with my life. I have plans and scenarios, but I feel very lonely in all of them because so few people hear them and think that they’re good ideas or plausible ideas. I feel like I’ve fallen into that “stable job” trap.

Don’t get me wrong. I enjoy my day job. It’s a great place to work and I need to pay my bills so why not enjoy it while I do?

I don’t even know where this is going anymore.

Long story short: I don’t feel well, I’m uncomfortable with the world and where it’s going. I’m working on a story that’s turning into a straight up commentary on the world that makes me uncomfortable, and I’m creating other things again, drawing and painting.

On top of all that, I feel like even though I’m going somewhere creatively I feel as though I’m missing passion and direction. I’m missing the confidence to go forward. And right now, I can’t do anything about it…

This has been my thought dump.

I’m Creating Again

Today has been a day off. I haven’t gone anywhere, or really done a whole lot. But, I have done one thing. I’ve been creating. (I also applied for my first car loan *shudder* and searched around online for cars within my pre-loan budget… b/c I haven’t been accepted yet, DUH!)

Going analog with The Disappearance of Clara Summers, in the background you can see my Intuos Art sitting on my computer that I’m using to draw digitally.

(I also shared some work that I created previously. Here, here, and here.)

I can’t tell you how good it feels to create again, and not just because I’m sitting with a heating pad on my back, on and off, while I do it. I wish I could do this all day, every day. Sadly, I only get eight days a month to devote to creating. (That’s 25% of my month… less!)

This last week I’ve managed to talk myself into working before I go in to the day job, or to sit down after I get home late at night. Yeah, 10pm isn’t late to most people, but I’m like 80 years old when it comes to the time I want to be in bed. #DefinitelyNotANiteOwl

I’ve been thinking a lot lately about what I want to do with my life. I’ve tossed around the idea of going back to school to get my teaching license, going to grad school like my friends from BSU English and getting my Masters in Creative Writing, and I’ve even considered just dropping everything, moving to New York, Seattle, or Chicago and just seeing what happens.

Teaching License: uhm… I like teaching Sunday school, but the education system itself is really screwed up and I’m just not ready to handle that.

Grad School: How in the world am I supposed to get the money for that/apply for grants/scholarships? I’m probably the most skittish person in the world about applying for things. It’s taken me a year to convince myself to apply for a car loan, and that’s only because I don’t have a lot of options at the moment. Let alone, I’d have to apply to actually get into the programs. (Let’s face it I’m a ball of skittish neuroses and I don’t like sticking my neck out there.)

Which is exactly why I can’t just up and move cities without like a decade of planning, some counseling, and a tub of ice cream – actually ice cream sounds really good right now, but that’s beside the point. In other words, that’s DEFINITELY not happening.

Clara Summers Concept
Clara Summers – My latest and most favorite creation.

Yet, as my brain starts itself back up through the rust and dust, I can’t deny that it’s been a year (minus a few weeks) since I graduated college and I’m starting to feel antsy. I hadn’t planned to be living with my grandparents and still driving one of their cars by this time. I certainly hadn’t planned to have done so little creative work over this last year. You saw how I was at the beginning of 2018, I was all fired up for, like, the entire month of January! And then I fizzled again.


I feel like I need to do something, that I’m supposed to be somewhere else, doing something with myself. I’ve been blessed that God has not only given me a job, but the endurance to keep working that job – even if I complain a lot, don’t enjoy it like I did, and hurt all over. But, there’s more to life, to my life, than the garden center at Lowe’s. On top of it, just after this last weekend, with our season really starting with the break in crappy weather, I can’t help but ask myself how much longer I can keep up at this job before my body just drops.

Right now, looking forward to my daily creations and my daily devotions are the only things that keep me going to work every day and not giving in to the depression.

Knowing that there is something else I need to be doing – even if I don’t know what that is just yet – is pushing me out of bed in the morning. I may not look forward to going in for the day job, but I look forward to getting home and creating something, continuing the creation I began that morning, or have been working on for a while now.

Charlie – My favorite doofus. (Don’t tell my brother.)

I have my favorites playlist going on my iPod every time I sit down at the computer. I’m getting into a routine with it. I’m getting to the point where I can shut off the rest of the world again. Well, except for doofus, he doesn’t like to be shut out with the rest of the world, so he hides under the desk while I work whenever he feels like he needs to be noticed.


I think he’s happier too, now that I’m creating again instead of lying in bed on my phone or watching Netflix all day when I’m off. Tomorrow morning I was even thinking of taking him to the park or to the pet store for a “field trip” with just the two of us before I go look at a car in Mishawaka in the afternoon.

Creating again is like a drug in its addictiveness. I’ve been focusing for so long on what I want to do with my life and where I’m at that I set aside my skills as a creator, as a storyteller, and let them get covered in dust. That was a dumb mistake, because I know one thing for certain: whatever it is that this drive to do something with my life is pointing me towards, I’m going to be creating when I get there. I can’t see myself doing anything else in the future. No matter what my day job is now, or in the future, whether or not I travel or go to school – in my daydreams, my creativity is always there, even if it’s not the main subject, it’s there.

Whenever I think about the future or about the past, I can’t imagine putting it aside, not after all the work I’ve put into it, going to school and getting my degree in writing, investing in art supplies, I can’t give up.

So, yeah… I’m creating again, and I’m excited, and I’m going to do anything I can to keep this going. I don’t want to let this go again. No matter how hard it gets to drag myself out of bed in the morning, it’s just not going to happen again. I can’t let it.

Goals – 2018

Some of you may remember that around September, before the site update and rebrand, that I posted a set of goals for my writing meant to take place between Then and the end of August 2018?

However, with the new year starting I find that I very much want to be setting goals like everyone else. There’s something that appeals to my ordered nature (I heard that snort in the back, have a joke you’d like to share with the rest of the class?) about the symmetry of the year and goals. The fact that we mark a new beginning at this time is intriguing. I mean time may be just a social construct, but it rules our lives more than we care to admit. So, instead of setting completely new goals I’m gong to tweak a few of them and add a few to reflect my current state.

  1.  72 Poems total (adds 18 poems… don’t know if it’s one a week, I’m a little behind right now, so I’ll make it work)
  2. 17 Short Stories (adds 5 stories)
  3. 8 Essays Total (adds 2)
  4. 1 Television Pilot – Goal Unchanged
  5. 1 Fiction Novel – Do you think I’m crazy enough to add another novel to this whole mess?… You’re sort of right – keep reading for an explanation.
  6. Instead of a Non-Fiction book I’m working on a multi-media interactive project that may or may not include a Non-Fiction written element in the form of a book… but this project is already beyond a book with the way I’m seeing this.
  7. 1 Feature Script – Goal Unchanged

And here we get to the brand new goals… all shiny and freshly minted!!!

  1. 24 Paintings (2 a month): I feel this is a reasonable goal to achieve, painting is a new hobby, but I’m hoping to make more use out of it when telling stories
  2. Serial Fiction (Or Why I’m sort of crazy… but not crazy enough to add a second Novel to my goals for the year.) : I want to plot a serial fiction piece and start releasing it on its own site this year (So be watching.) I’m also hoping to do art for it as well. I don’t feel good enough – or fast enough – to start releasing a web comic, but I’m hoping that eventually I will acquire the skill, time, and ability to do that as well.
  3. I want to be happy… I have so many goals right now that I’m not including here because they’re long-winded and I don’t want this post to be too long, but they can all be summed up as, I want to be happy, closer to God, and doing what I love on my own terms.

These are my goals for 2018, I’m turning 22 years old this May, it’s exciting, but there are so many things I haven’t done or experienced. So many things I want to do in so many different aspects of my life. So, here’s to a fun, interesting , and creative filled year.

Yours Always,