(In)Finite.

Is a story really ever over?

Does it truly ever end?

I was thinking about this today, while doing some more work converting my novel-to-comic. I “finished” it awhile back, after re-re-re-rewriting it for the last (roughly) ten years. And even now, when I have “put it to bed” and whatnot, I have thoughts of adding things or changing scenes around or inserting some more informative exposition here or there. But I don’t, and I don’t know why. I’ve heard established writers’ thoughts on this, and the unanimous consensus is usually “when you can’t add to it without changing what you originally set out to do, its done.”

With that being said, I don’t know.

I guess I’m of the belief that a story is complete (and by “complete”, I do not mean over) only when the author is ready for it to be read by outsiders, i.e., someone other than friends, family, editors, and the like. That’s just my take on it; there could still be moments where you feel the urge to add something, but if its ready to be read by a stranger, than its ready.

The REAL question is, how do we know when its ready?

I’m reminded of the original stories, of ancient myth, and how they were told around fires by storytellers who may or may not have come up with them themselves. By the time the story reached the 10th person it had completely changed form from its previous version(s).

So, if you think yours is complete, don’t go crazy over whether it truly is or isn’t. Chances are, if it gets read enough, it won’t be your baby anymore, really. Another mind, another heart will have already given it new meaning, new purpose, new life.

Love to hear some thoughts on this.

Seratonin.

I can’t stop singing the praises of fitness and what leading a healthy life can earn you. I know my readers are probably sick of me going on about “the fit life” but with each day that goes by I am given another reason why its changed me for the better.

Its been a rough year. Between looking for a job in the writing field and homelife troubles, stress has found its way to me time and time again. And for someone who is, for all intents and purposes, an eternal optimist, that’s not an easy thing to do. I have avoided the effects of stress all my life, no matter how down I got, but this year, my usual impregnable defenses just could take no more.

That’s where the gym came in.

I’ve always been interested in fitness and athletics (as I’ve mentioned in previous posts) but for the last year and a half I have truly given myself over completely to the dedication and consistency required to lead “the fit life”. And it has been undoubtedly my greatest weapon in my fight against those days where stress creeps up on me again, trying to catch me off-guard.

Not only are the physical results inspiring, but the mental (and, for those who believe in this sort of thing) spiritual results are gratifying to a much higher degree. As the cliche goes, exercise, training, diet, and the like just make you feel better, mind body and soul.

I went for a haircut today, and as a member of the receding hairline club, my haircuts are few and far between. My barber (a bodybuilder and personal trainer), after cleaning me up, looked at me and said “brother, you realize you’re hair is growing back, right? you have more hair this time.” I looked in the mirror and, though skeptical, realized that what I thought was optimism was actual reality: my hair is growing in again. Then he whispered, sage-like “That’s the gym.”

We had a laugh but I find it to be true. Stress had reached into my very scalp, and the benefits of exercising and eating right have begun to reverse the damage. Literally, fitness heals you.

Flight.

Man. I need to travel.

There is something about seeing pictures of other states and countries that is inspirational. I get an almost nostalgic feeling looking at these things, as if I had been there before. I’ve only been to a few states, and to the Dominican Republic.

But for a young guy like myself who is hungry for knowledge through experience, its nowhere near enough.

I want to learn the wonders of The Louvre, and The Sistine Chapel, and the British Museum. I want to see the beauty of Vienna, and of the Pyramids at Giza. I want to look up at Christ The Redeemer in Rio de Janeiro, and enter the Opera House in Sydney. I want to check the time on Big Ben in England, and experience the native history of Peru. I want to party in Amsterdam and rest in Jamaica. I want to stand on the ancient sands of the Coliseum, and pilgrim my way up the Great Wall of China.

I just want to go.

Simple Post Saturday VIII

“ ‘What did occur to me,’ he said, ’was that if God were to go ahead and get rid of everything except little old me, I’d be in exactly the position He was at the beginning. I’d be Him. Rich, don’t you think? Lucifer ends up where God started.’

‘It wouldn’t be the same and you know it.’

‘How not?’

‘Because you can’t create anything,’ I said.”-Glen Duncan, I, Lucifer

Action!

Going along with my previous posts, here is an excerpt of the converted novel-to-comic book/graphic novel script. I just completed it today, and after getting a proposal ready I’ll start sending it out for submission. Let me know what you guys think and I hope you enjoy! (P.S., CAP stands for “caption”; in this case, narrator)

THE CRUSADER, Issue #1 (script-first nine pages of issue)

PAGE NINE: (Five panels)

Panel 1: Upper left-hand corner. Shot of MONYA stopping to catch her breath, still surrounded by trees and wood. She is bent over, hands on her knees.

MONYA: [thought] Can’t stop. But so tired. But I can’t stop, not when –

Panel 2: Upper right-hand corner, longer three-dimensional shot of MONYA’s face, her eyes turned to the right, as if she knows someone is behind her. Sure enough, the dark FIGURE is standing a few yards away, cloaked in shadow.

CAP: She could feel him behind her. What kind of monster was this that she could actually feel his presence behind her?

Panel 3: Long middle panel, showing the FIGURE’s glaring eyes. Its skin is iridescent, almost glowing, and it looked like it had been out in the freezing cold for years. Its eyes were a bloodshot, electric-blue. Flyaways of its straight silver hair were on its face.

FIGURE: Do not run. Do not fear me. Tell me child…what year is it?

Panel 4. Directly under panel 3, same format, showing MONYA’s frightened, tear-ravaged brown eyes. There are tiny cuts on her face from the sharp tree branches.

CAP: She wanted to run away. She wanted to scream. But above all else, she wanted to respond.

MONYA: It’s…its 2018.

Panel 5. Large bottom shot. MONYA is laying in the snow, her throat ripped apart, her eyes wide. She is lying spread-eagle. Blood from her neck is pouring onto the snow. In the corner, the FIGURE’s claws can be seen, red with her blood.

FIGURE: More…more than a decade.

CAP: The last thing MONYA NIKOCEVIC saw was the flash of dirt-stained claws to her throat and her own blood splattering on the ground, painting the pure white snow a silent red.

Graphic, Pt. II

mocastle:

-just a reblog of this previous post for tonight.

Sorry about the brief reprieve, had an eventful weekend that left out valuable blogging time. Below you all will find an excerpt from the vampire novel I mentioned in my previous post that I am going to try to adapt to comic/graphic novel. This particular excerpt is set 17 years before the current plotline of the story. I do this to show how this particular story, in my opinion, would work better hand-in-hand with art. Any tips/critiques/reviews would he appreciated!

“He heard a yelp, like the cry of a silenced dog, and then a thudding noise nearby. Clouds of dust fell from the floorboards around him. Silence, followed by the distant intakes of ragged breath. At last, someone spoke.

‘Burn it down.’

Michael heard footfalls run past the trapdoor toward the entrance of the house. The unmistakable noise of a match striking. He waited a few moments until he was sure whoever was above had gone, and then he felt the air start to become thick, the wood above him hot to the touch.

‘C’mon guys, we’re getting out of here,’ he said. He tried pushing the door open, but there was something weighing it down. Growing impatient, he roared and bashed a hole clean through the wood before climbing out.

His eyes widened when he was what was on top of the trapdoor.

The still-blinking head of one of the vampires was lying near its edge.
Michael gulped and lifted his siblings out of the hole he had made. Iris screamed out a cry, and Caleb began to shake.

‘No…no, don’t look! Don’t look!’
He put his hand over Caleb’s face and hugged Iris to his leg. He craned his neck upwards, looking around but not wanting to stare at any one place for too long. He saw flashes of fire, the broken bodies of his parents, the bloodied limbs of the vampires who had met their end at the hands of his mother. He tried not to look at her but her body seemed magnified amongst all the destruction; to him she looked almost fake, a lifelessness to her face that was unnatural. He couldn’t bear to stay there any longer. He let out an anguished yell, lifted his siblings up and charged out of the back door of the house as the fire threatened to consume them.

The cold silence that had enveloped him was broken when he noticed that both Iris and Caleb were crying in his arms. Unwillingly, he peeled his eyes away from the burning place that was once home and began running again. Running toward an unknown world full of violence and blood that would ultimately shape his future and yet, he allowed his mind to keep one piece of that present:

He would never forget that vampire’s face.”

Originally posted on Words Equal Water:

Sorry about the brief reprieve, had an eventful weekend that left out valuable blogging time. Below you all will find an excerpt from the vampire novel I mentioned in my previous post that I am going to try to adapt to comic/graphic novel. This particular excerpt is set 17 years before the current plotline of the story. I do this to show how this particular story, in my opinion, would work better hand-in-hand with art. Any tips/critiques/reviews would he appreciated!

“He heard a yelp, like the cry of a silenced dog, and then a thudding noise nearby. Clouds of dust fell from the floorboards around him. Silence, followed by the distant intakes of ragged breath. At last, someone spoke.

‘Burn it down.’

Michael heard footfalls run past the trapdoor toward the entrance of the house. The unmistakable noise of a match striking. He waited a few moments until he was…

View original 316 more words

Bottom.

This post is dedicated to those out there who have reached rock-bottom.

Be it either your broke, or your love life is dead, or you don’t seem to have any direction in the world. Where the days seem to last an eternity and each one is just an eventless clone of the previous.

My words on this are simple.

Please…wait for it to get better. Please.

I myself have reached a moment in my life where few things seem to be going right. Time continues to pass by and I am still struggling to find work in the writing field. I can only watch as my peers move up in the world and I stay stuck in this quicksand-like rut. I wake up everyday and check my phone and email with the hopefulness a thirsty man might have with the promise of water. Hoping for some news of a change, a new beginning.

But as bad as it gets, the thing that keeps me going is that a new day WILL come. Sure, its the optimist in me, but is it not true? Hasn’t history told us that there is eventually light at the end of the tunnel? Even if that light leads to another tunnel, that LIGHT is worth the struggle. That one moment of triumph, of happiness, of glory, that is what we live for.

Time is an entity of balance. Things can go extremely bad. They can also get very good. So please. Just wait.

I’ve been waiting. Its hard, man…its fucking hard. But the wait is sure to be worth it.