Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Blogoversary Celebration Day 5: Steven Luna {Guest Post & Giveaway}

5 Days in and I feel like I could do this everyday. I am definitely enjoying myself with this little celebration. I hope you are too. On the 5th day of celebration the blogging world gave us my next great author. I again met this author through Twitter and now that I think about through M.R. Merrick. I realized today that I could probably name this celebration 6 degrees of separation from M.R. Merrick because I've met most of these awesome people through him.

I found Steven Luna's awesome tweets one day stalking M.R. Merrick's feed. I don't recall exactly what told me I needed to follow and stalk him too, but I listened to my instincts and I did. I regret nothing. My instincts are hardly ever wrong and with this case they were right on. Steven Luna is a great guy who is not only an incredibly gifted writer, he's got humor, and sarcasm in spades.

Yes I follow a lot of sarcastic and funny people. We all need fun in our lives, I like mine by the hundreds. After speaking with Steven over Twitter I read his first book, Joe Vampire (which is only 99c by the way!) and let me just tell you he had me laughing so hard I would have spit milk out my nose, if I had been drinking any. This book was different and amazing on so many different levels. And just like that I was hooked to his style of magnetic writing.

Then one day I learned that he was a part of this great site called Dumb White Husband (with an author you will meet tomorrow) where a bunch of husbands tell hilarious stories from their lives as well, you guessed it, husbands. Every post was hilarious. And I ate them up. I now work with this amazing guy on that very site. Steven is stupid talented, no that's not a bad thing. He has more talent in his baby toe than I have in my entire being. Seriously. Just wait until you read the following post, you will beg him to bottle his talent. I am so glad to call Steven my friend. And honored that I get to write along side him, and humbled when I get to bask in his talent.

Check out this bit of awesomeness.... I dare ya.

In Words and Pictures and Music
I’m always interested in learning about the creative process of others and finding out if mine is at all similar. Do they wander the world with a notepad and pen at all times to catch the ideas as the arrive scatter bound? Do they require a quiet space and a meditative state to summon inspiration? Do they get stuck in spots they can’t find their way out of, only to surrender and find that the flow returns in their giving up?

Do they spin themselves in circles trying to figure out where to start?

For me, it’s an all-the-time thing. There’s never really a moment in the day when I don’t have an idea flitting about in my head. And they don’t all arrive in written form, either. I’m also an illustrator. Visually, I perceive the world in layers; my images are a translation of the space between, of the thinly-sliced cross-section between This World and That World. I’ve learned recently that this happens best when I contain the ideas within a definite outline, though I’ve experimented with raw shape and form and color in the past. Something about a drawn illustration gives me the boundaries I need to contain and restrain the idea within necessary boundaries. Having returned recently to that form for my visual art, I find it relatively easy to “dip in” at will and create something new.

I’m also a musician—a pianist, mostly, and untrained, the same as in my other creative disciplines. Playing is a form of relaxation for me, akin to doodling but with sound instead of line, with melody and tone rather than light and color. I started college as a music major, but after a single semester of playing in class, I realized it was too nerve-wracking to have an audience (even though the class had dwindled to two people by the end of the term.) I realized that learning how to play wasn’t interesting to me; playing was. I had always played by ear, and still do, simplified (or not) versions of pretty much anything I hear. More often than not, I just free-flow, something composed by someone else, rolling into something I’ve composed myself, rolling into something I’ve never played before. I let whatever happens, happen, largely because I know that anyone within earshot isn’t paying much attention to what I’m doing. And if they are, I have my back turned to them anyway, so…

And then, there’s the writing. I have constant and continuous narration running in my head, something I’ve heard other writers confess to as well. Mine sounds a lot like the voice-over artists who do film trailers: precise and cinematic, even when it rattles off the silly ramblings of Joe Vampire. In most cases, I switch over and listen to it whenever I’m ready for that element of my creative endeavors to be engaged. In some cases, though, it turns on without warning. At those times, I’m scrambling for scratch paper and a pen so I can capture what it’s telling me before it goes away. It rarely goes completely silent, if ever; it’s always burbling in the background, taking notes and composing dialogue for the next moment I need to tell a story using words instead of images or sound.

It’s my shaman of making things up, my storyteller guide.

I think this is the element that underlies all the aspects of creativity, be it mine or anyone else’s: all of it revolves around storytelling. There’s some story we creative folk desperately need to tell the world, and we find the most readily-available and fulfilling medium with which to do so. In my case, I have a range of media to choose from. I consider myself beyond fortunate to have been bestowed them by whatever universal force saw fit to do so. Each one is viable when considering the purpose for which they exist; all of them together fulfill a spectrum of creative necessity, something programmed into me on a quantum level. I honestly can’t imagine what life would be like for me, were I to lose the ability to engage any one of them.

But man…some days, you should see me spin.

Thank you Danielle, for all you’ve done to support indie artists just like me. We owe you a debt of gratitude for your help in getting our works to the world!

Steven, seriously it is an honor to get to support such amazing people like yourself. I am floored at this post. I am exhausted just reading it, I can only imagine what it's like to live one day as you! Thanks for helping out!!!!

And for your viewing pleasure Steven Luna is sharing one of his beautiful illustrations with all of you. 

Of The Spheres

Isn't that stunning??? So beautiful and graceful. Thanks again for sharing Steven.

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