Greetings, fellow travelers!
In my last post (which admittedly was far too long ago) I mentioned I was going to take a crack at RPM 2019. It’s roughly akin to NaNoWriMo but for writing songs. The goal was to create 10 new songs during the month of February (they always pick the worst months for these things).
Well, February came and went and I didn’t quite achieve the goal. First off, I never would have truly beat the challenge, as participants were asked to upload their finished songs in order to have them count. My songs are never really finished. I’m about the furthest thing from a professional musician as one could get and still consider it a hobby. I suppose if I hired someone to redo my vocals and guitars, re-record the keyboards, master the songs and rewrite my lyrics I might come close to having a finished work. As it is, I write and record for myself and those poor unfortunate souls I feel comfortable enough with to subject to my aural torture.
All of that notwithstanding, I failed to meet even the number of songs I intended to write. At best, I put together fragments of seven songs, only one of which I had previously written the lyrics to. Of those seven, I’ve only subjected others to one of them. Another is almost ready to unleash upon those I consider friends (we do tend to hurt the ones we love).
Still, despite coming up short, I consider it an overall victory. Much like with my writing, I had been out of the music making business for a time. I’ve written a ton of lyrics, recorded some really rough (like super rough) demos and worked on a few of my older songs, but it had been awhile since I could say I had felt my creative juices flowing. Those seven songs jazzed me up (though none of them are actually jazz) and got me excited to work on more. I’ve been finding myself dropping dope phat beats and sick-ass rhymes on a more continual basis. At least in my head, I have.
And now that I’ve been able to jumpstart that part of my brain back into being, I’m turning my focus once again on writing. I’ve still been working on that cursed fifth book, Afterlife, which I assure you all is still on its way, though I’ll be the first to tell you it’s taking too long. So to refresh my mind, I’ve been going through the previous books (and finding some errors which I plan to fix… sorry!). I want to make sure I don’t leave any plot threads dangling or forget about characters. I know it’s been a slow, arduous process and I’ve been promising forward momentum for some time now, but I promise progress is right around the corner.
And because I’m not content explaining why I’ve sucked at putting out a new book (two if you count the third book in the Unseen Things series… yikes), I also wanted to announce my plans to work on a story with my mother. For those of you unfortunate enough to have never met her, she is Mickee Madden, author of the Everlastin’ series (among many others). Seriously, if you’ve never read that book and you have an affinity for Scottish dialect and ghosts, stop reading this and go check it out. Actually, no, finish reading this, then click on her name to go to her author page on Amazon (assuming I didn’t mess up that link).
Awhile back, I approached her with a very rough idea I had for a story, a basic premise, really. After talking it out, we decided we would work on the story together, round robin style. I’m going to start it out then pass it onto her, without any knowledge of what she plans to do with it ahead of time. Then she’ll send it back to me and so on.
I’m not sure what will come of it, though I can honestly say I’m excited to see. I tend to be a very private person with my writing, keeping plot twists to myself (how else am I supposed to gauge how well they land?), so I never considered myself to be much of a collaborative writer. Yet here I am, related to the person who taught me (almost) everything I know about writing (and there’s still oh so much more for me to learn from her). Why shouldn’t we put our noggins together to see what kind of goodies come out?
Despite all of this, I don’t think working on this story is going to derail me from completing the previous irons in the fire. If anything, I have a feeling it might energize me. Much like working on music has pushed my mind into songwriting mode.
Whatever comes of it all, I appreciate everyone’s patience and understanding. I only hope I can reward it someday (sooner rather than later).
As ever, thanks for reading.