Archive for the ‘Living Your Dream’ Category

It’s been awhile since I wrote Graceful Dancing, ideally I would like to say my life has improved, unfortunately logic proves in an ideal reality the word or concept of ideal wouldn’t exist. Therefore ideally is linguistically a lie wrapped in other linguistic lies such as hope or faith. We need to find some comfort no matter how delusional in order to cope with the reality in which we live.

Reality is a ruthless bitch who shows no mercy to the inhabitants of our vast universe. For the millions of people who are swollowed by reality there are millions who overcome and thrive. I have attempted to thrive in the reality I exist, but have been fractured within her madness. The most recent is being evicted, I am unsure how to make it through this one.

Those of you who have been reading my words know the various dreams and aspirations I have had, unfortunately you know I failed. Ever since chaos invaded my only safe place my life has unraveled and shattered into a million pieces. I still hold onto delusional dreams of being more than I am. It’s the only beacon of light in a world of darkness. Throughout the nightmares, within fractured chaos something has slowly emerged into my dream becoming true.

I have become codependent on this dream. The website is almost up. I will be starting a new blog on WordPress and another on YouTube. Once the website is up the printing options available will increase ten fold. But it still needs to go live which who knows if that will happen. My urgency to obtain curency is my top priority. I have turned to Facebook and offering coupon codes for those who like my page to get coupons for 50% to 75% off the entire store. Desperate times my friends.. for those of you who suffer subscribe to this blog I will cross post for awhile until everyone has subscribed to the new blog.

I have to try to keep out of the darkness. I have been to the hospital far to many times this year.

Dreams is All They Are

Dreams Is All They Are

Its late at night, I drift off to sleep

Dreaming I wake the man you want me to be

When I awake, my dreaming didn’t take

Seeing your unmatched beauty

Lost in your eyes

Mesmerized by perfection

Truly it could take only a God

To bless us with you

It’s late at night, drifting off to sleep

Dreaming I wake to a day where you see me

When I awake my dreaming simply didn’t take

I notice you light up a room

Lost in your eternal light

I walk by with childhood nerves

Hoping you will shine

Your light upon me

It’s late at night, drifting off to sleep

Dreaming I wake to a day I hear you speak

When I awake my dreams simply didn’t take

I hear your voice on the phone

The sound of trumpeting angels fills the room

My body filled with such excitement

Excitement over the chance

Those trumpets will be directed at me

It’s late at night I drift off to sleep

On those lucky nights when I dream

It is about you

Caressing your cheek, a gentle kiss

Smiles and laughter

Embraced with love

Our suffering freed by a dove

When I awake my dreaming simply didn’t take

These are dreams I know I shall miss

It was you who washed away the dirt

Giving me hope to a brighter future

A chance at what love was meant to be

Dreams

This is all I have

Dreams

Is all they are

By: Tim Lundmark

Signed Drawing and Poem Available at

http://www.etsy.com/shop/TheRandomArtist

 

Two years ago by happenstance I discovered I possessed the ability to draw, little did I know this singular event would initiate a butterfly effect that would alter my very existence. A major piece of me died when I quit writing years ago, as a result my dream, joy, and self-esteem died. I was sentenced to an agonizing existence; locked away within my own mind. From time-to-time the memory of how I felt during that period where I was pursuing my dream would take over, and I would attempt to return to my passion very little success.  Something which at one point came so effortlessly seemed impossible. As time passed I lost my creativity piece by piece until I had nothing. One of my only sources of inner and outer positive reinforcement was gone.

Until one day at work mindlessly working the phones I found myself looking at this picture and attempted to draw what I was looking at. To my surprise I was able to produce a near perfect duplicate of what I was looking at. This was just simple line work with no shading or other drawing techniques.  I was so proud of myself I continued to do this working my way up to more complicated and detailed duplicates. In January of this year I completed a drawing I was proud enough of I decided to pin it to my cork board behind my desk. The same day I hung this drawing I started to receive compliments, and positive reinforcement for something I managed to accomplish.  It had been some time since I felt good about myself. This was the only motivation I needed to jump into this drawing thing and seriously work on improving my skills so I could continue to feel positive about myself.

Between the positive reinforcement, along with the return of my creativity I ended up being freed from the shackles of oppression I had been suffering. As my confidence grew, so did the reality and realization of where I was in my life. I went on a journey of honest self reflection of my life, and who I was. This has been a painful, yet liberating voyage I continue to this day. With a little outside push of extreme hurt and betrayal from someone close to me I was given the final reason to end a horrible marriage, and a real chance to experience a new life. The details behind this can be saved for another time.

I am amazed at how much my life has changed from then to now. I started selling my drawings, which if I can figure out how to do it I will begin to post them on my blog. I have started writing again; although I have yet to hit my stride where my thoughts can be translated as effortlessly as before, but I continue to make positive steps forward so I can achieve this once again.

Along with the joy and excitement I am feeling about returning to this blog, the spark to start writing my “Dylan Thomas” children’s book series is alive, and feels like it could actually become a reality. Words cannot describe what I am feeling at this moment. The chance to fulfill a dream I have had since a child has been returned to me, and I intend on embracing this second chance.

What We Learn From Failed Relationships

Posted: May 27, 2014 in Absolute Truth, Abuse, Anxiety, Arguments, Blog, Blogging, Change, Childhood, Children, Coping, Crisis, Culture, Dating, Debates, Depression, Diary, Dilemma, Divorce, Dreams, Emotional Abuse, Ethics, Evil, Faith, Family, Fatherhood, Fear, Forgiveness, Freedom, Fun, Greed, Grief, Growing up in abusive homes, Health, Humor, Inside My Mind, Journal, Kids, Learning, Lies and broken promises, Life, Lists, Living Your Dream, Logic, Love, Lust, Marriage, Mental Health, Mental Illness, Misc, miscellaneous, Moral Theories, Morals, Motivation, Mourning, NA, Opinion, Pain, Parent, Parenting, Personal, Philosophy, Poems, Poetry, Published Author, Quotes, Random, Random Thoughts, Rants, Rejection, Relationship Issues, Relationships, Sadness, Self-esteem, Self-Help, Self-image, Social Anxiety, Social Debates, Society, Sorrow, Spirituality, Stress, Suffering, The Invention of Lying, The Philosophy of Lyrics, The Philosophy of Quotes, Things That Give Me Anxiety, Thoughts, Top Ten Lists, Uncategorized, Unity, Verbal Abuse, Writing
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I would first like to start off by thanking all of my readers and subscribers. I learned today; I have readers from 61 different countries. I think that’s pretty bad ass. I am aware that my readership grew from the topics of philosophy, theology, and madness. So bear with me as I stray a bit from those topics. Today I would like to release that which has been permeating in my mind. I would like ponder for a moment the importance of learning from our mistakes in a failed relationship. Through all of this I am trying to maintain a positive attitude and outlook. So here we go.

The one thing I can say with out a doubt is I am far from sainthood. I have made my more than my fair share of mistakes, and bad decisions which played a role in the overall destruction of my marriage. I am ashamed and consumed with intense guilt because of this. This combined with my wife’s lies, and infidelity has allowed me to see the light. I am sure I could write a 200 page paper on this topic, but I will try to keep this short and sweet.

There are 10 main things I have learned in my failed marriage. Now mind you there are far more than 10, but as I said this is not a 200 page dissertation on my failed marriage. I will do my best to not place blame, because it doesn’t do anyone any good. Some things on this list will undoubtedly overlap, even though this is the case I feel each one deserves to be mentioned. Without further ado here is my list of 10 things I learned from my failed marriage.

  1. Never Lie: I did a lot of research after I found out about what my wife did. I learned that in humans our first response when we know we have done something wrong, that will ultimately lead to a negative outcome our immediate response is to lie. We do this for two reasons one we want to avoid conflict, and two we don’t want to get in trouble. Since I am a proponent of the tabula rasa theory (mind being born as a blank slate.) I feel this is a trait we learn as children, which carries over into adulthood. Lying to your partner no matter how small is a terrible idea. We can overcome this childish trait, by knowing our partner as well as ourselves, focus on understanding and know that mistakes are actually learning opportunities.
  2. Never Cheat: I think this one doesn’t need further explanation. It’s a painful and shitty thing to do to those we love. Even if (insert some attractive famous person) wanted to be with you, nothing is worth hurting the one you love.
  3. Trust: it should go without saying that if the two things listed above are followed then trust shouldn’t be an issue. Unfortunately we all carry the baggage of past hurt, what we need to realize is who ever we are with now is not the person who caused us hurt in the past. I would imagine it would be a good idea to be open and honest about these past hurts. A relationship that is not built on trust is like trying to build a house of cards on a windy day, neither of these two examples will be successful. The perfect advice one can give in fostering trust in a relationship is this; if you would not say or do something if your partner was there with you, then you definitely shouldn’t do it.
  4. Accept and Love Each Other For All Their Good Qualities, As Well As Their Flaws: let’s admit it people, no one is perfect, and those who claim to be are probably the most screwed up of them all. Initially I am sure that we all fall in love with our mates good qualities. During the “courting” or “honeymoon” phase of a relationship, it is kind of like interviewing for a job, you really are not being completely honest your just trying to get the “job.” As the relationship progresses and begins to become serious is usually when we start to notice each others flaws. The important thing is that we learn to love that person regardless of their flaws. In fact I believe our flaws can become the most exciting part of a relationship. When you love the good qualities along with the flaws you know you have found true love; when everything seems to fit like a glove.
  5. Never Put Your Partner Down and Break Their Will: this topic has a lot to do with item number four. There are just two things I would like to add. The first is from an article by John Gottman, PhD in an article titled “4 Signs of A Troubled Marriage” Here is the link.http://affiliatedpsychologicalservices.com/4-signs-of-a-troubled-marriage/ Gottman talks about “The Four Horsemen of The Apocalypse” which are clear signs you are headed for a divorce. The first two he brings up is “Criticism” and “Contempt.” If anyone out there grew up in an abusive home where as a child you were faced with these two horsemen, having to deal with such things in a marriage is a key ingredient in a divorce. If you tell someone something negative about them enough times, with the right amount of nastiness it is only natural the other party will believe what they are being told, and inevitable this is who they will see when they look into the mirror. I don’t think people are aware of how serious the long term damage can be. My second point comes from a line from the song “Weight of The World” by Blue October. “Don’t bother changing things that won’t give into changing.” It is one thing to help your partner grow and become the best person they can be, but in the process don’t try to change who they are inside. If you are hell bent on trying to force someone to change, there is always medication. If this is your goal please take to heart one of my quotes “Medication is to fix the people we don’t like.” If you feel you need to medicate your partner, it’s time to call it quits.
  6. Freedom: As your relationship grows, it is imperative that you do not take away your partners freedom. When I say freedom I am not referring to allowing your partner to go out all the time neglecting the relationship, and engaging in behaviors which fall into the first three categories I listed. When I say freedom, I say that it is clearly healthy to share and be with each other, but it is also healthy to have a respectful life outside of the relationship. I have made this deadly mistake in one of my relationships, and I have now been on the receiving end of how damaging smothering and isolating your partner can be. If your relationship is built on a strong foundation of trust and respect this should be something you encourage each other to do. I have always admired the relationship between my best friend of 26 years and his lovely wife. I will not mention names, but I truly hope one day I can figure out whatever their secret is, and apply it to my future relationships. I am going to encourage them to write a book.
  7. Support Their Dreams: There is nothing more precious and sacred than some ones hopes and dreams. For some our dreams appear to us when we are young, others do not fully realize their dreams until they discover who they are. When I was young I had the normal boyhood dreams to become a professional football or baseball player, unfortunately like normal boys those dreams were not meant to be. Beyond those two options, I really didn’t have anything else that drove or inspired me, until the 5th grade. Long story short I ended up doing many writing assignments and I remember my teacher signing my year book, saying she could one day see something I have written being published. I was not a very well behaved child, so positive reinforcement from the teachers I tormented was rare, but from that moment my dream changed. I wanted to become a professional writer. As I grew older I held onto this dream, and wrote in private. I never thought anything I would write would be read let alone published. Again long story short one of my poetry books was published, I started this blog, wrote two children’s books, and two other poetry books. Needless to say this was the greatest I had ever felt about myself, because I accomplished something I never thought I could… my dream. I did not receive support from my partner, and in fact was highly put down and discouraged from continuing to write, until finally I had no option but to stop writing. The details behind this are not important at this moment.
  8. Open & Honest Communication: You would think this is a no brainier, but for my marriage and I would imagine many others this proved to be too challenging to overcome and sowed the seeds to our divorce. I feel if you have all seven of these things listed above then number eight would be a given, but if you take out one or two of the above it makes communication a challenge. I avoided and ran away from open and honest communication. I could make a laundry list for why, but this is already becoming too long of a post. Mainly I was afraid to honestly look in the mirror, I was scared I was going to receive an unhealthy dose of items four and five. Regardless of those reasons it is on me for failing in this aspect of our marriage. I need to take ownership for this, and like everything listed learn to not make the same mistakes. It is very difficult and challenging for me to be social, and communicate even with those closest to me. I know this is something I need to work on, but what always ends up playing over and over in my mind is the Pink Floyd lyrics from the song “The Final Cut” which I will add at the end.
  9. Be A Selfless Lover: This is actually one area where I have and feel the most accomplished. I felt I needed to add this, because in my experience men in general put their intimacy needs, or the final “outcome” before their partners. I will not go into detail in case my mom is reading this, but as men our primary focus and goal when it comes to being intimate is placing our partners needs before ourselves. Any man can do his business and be on his way, but this is a man who has failed. When it comes to intimacy your only goal and desire should be the feelings and ultimate “outcome” of your partners needs. Everything else should be secondary.
  10. Find Your Genuine Light: Tomorrow I am going to post a quick poem describing the meaning behind this comment. I do not believe in soul mates. I do not believe there is only one true love for everyone. I believe for everyone, there exists many individuals who could be considered your genuine light. I believe they are rare, but they are out there. My advice is if you feel you are holding your genuine light, don’t let them slip away because you cannot be certain another one will come around to light up your life.

 

“And if I show you my dark side
Will you still hold me tonight?
And if I open my heart to you
And show you my weak side
What would you do?
Would you sell your story to Rolling Stone?
Would you take the children away
And leave me alone?
And smile in reassurance
As you whisper down the phone?
Would you send me packing?
Or would you take me home?”

Pink Floyd

These lyrics describe perfectly why it is so difficult for me to open up to people, which hinders my ability to effectively communicate.

I finished my second “Dylan Thomas” book about eight months ago. I passed it off to my illustrator, and I was expecting a release date no later than two months from that date. I am sad to say that it has not been completed. I was going to send these two books to agents in hopes I can pick one up, and eventually get signed. My wife did a ton of research and she discovered that you need multiple manuscripts to show you are not a one and done. I found this out about six months ago, and I have been unable to write another one. I have tried and tried, but I could just not do it, until about three weeks ago. I am happy to say I have finally started rolling on the next book. I am currently entrenched in this next installment, and hopefully I can finish it within the next month. If I am able to hit this deadline, then I can start the final manuscript needed to start sending this series off to agents.

Until these next two installments are finished I am not going to say too much about them, but I will say the current manuscript I am working on, and the next one lined up will be my greatest triumph if I am able to pull them off. These two manuscripts will be the ones which get me signed by an agent, then shortly after by a publisher. I am usually a glass is empty sort of thinker, but when it comes to my newest ideas for the “Dylan Thomas” series, I can honestly say without a shadow of doubt that I have never been more certain about my success.

I am set to do readings at my sons’ school for all the kindergarten classes at the end of May. I currently have one book which is completely finished, and as I stated before my illustrator was supposed to have the second one illustrated months ago. I haven’t been pushing him much, but I finally told him I needed the second one completely finished by the end of April. We were supposed to meet two weeks ago to go over his progress, but he backed out. We then set up another meet last week, and I told him that there is not enough time to do any kind of revisions so just use what you have. I just really hope he hits the April 30th deadline. If he doesn’t I am thinking of letting him go. I feel confident that these manuscripts can stand on their own without the illustrations. It is my understanding that if the writer is signed, it is not always a guarantee the artist will be signed. I have texted him twice now with no response. Nothing irritates me more than someone not responding to a texts or e-mails.

On a side note I haven’t really been able to write poetry since I finished my last book “Trapped Within My Illness.” I sent this manuscript to a publishing company, and also to one of my readers whose father is in the business. I really do not think it will get published and I am totally fine with this. I have written only a handful of poems since I finished, but nothing like the flood of poems I write when I am in a funk.

I have also thought about revisiting my idea to write the book “The Life and Mind of No One Special.” I still think it would be a good idea to write a book based off my 100 best blog posts. I also have a few other ideas which I need to add to my website. I am not really going to focus on any other projects until I finish these two manuscripts. The overall scope of what I am trying to accomplish takes a shit load of time, which I do not have enough of. I just do not want these things to take four months to complete. I so badly want them in the agent’s hands so I can fully realize my dream.

I added a poll to this site awhile back asking my readers to help me with a tattoo idea I had. I truly appreciate all those who took the time to answer. I am going to add another poll on this site asking my readers to decide if “The Life and Mind of No One Special” is a viable idea, or possibly even a book based on my “Philosophy of Quotes.” If this is helpful I may place my other ideas out there to be judged by you guys. This survey will be up by tomorrow afternoon, so please take the time to vote, so I can get a sense of if this idea has merit.

About a year ago I founded a non-profit organization “The Bucket List Foundation.” This foundation started after the responses I received from a post I did in remembrance of a dear friend who lived at the nursing home I worked at. All I did was throw out an idea I had to help make the lives better for our oftentimes forgotten elderly. This post helped unite the founding members of the foundation. The founding board members changed a bit but the core members came together and everything started to take off. At first we were going to apply for the Pepsi Refresh Grant to get us off the ground but Nicole and I were concerned of the impact that would have on us come tax time. We decided to start from the ground up, and build from there. I must admit we were a bit awkward. Despite this we started to make some real progress, until recently where we hit a major hurdle in our development.

Our last meeting was months ago. The end result of this meeting was we were going to figure out how to break up the writing of our business plan. Nicole was put in charge of researching everything that went into writing a successful business plan, once completed she was to delegate sections to each member to complete before our next meeting. I do not think we were fully prepared for the sheer scope of this project. In reality we had just set ourselves up for failure because this was far more than one person could handle by themselves, when you added in Nicole’s workload the task was almost impossible. Time went by with no progress being made. The days turned into weeks, and the weeks into months. I was afraid with all the time which had passed the dream of this foundation just sort of sizzled out. I honestly thought the foundation had died completely.

I ended up talking to our president to see if she was still interested, and she confirmed that both her and her father were still very much interested in making this dream come true. She sent out an e-mail to all the board members to make sure we were still on board, and to see about scheduling our next meeting. I responded to the e-mail letting everyone know I was still interested in proceeding and advised we should either get together or brainstorm via e-mail on how to get us back on track. I am sorry to say I have not received a response from anyone.

I am a bit discouraged by the lack of response. I am worried that our first hurdle may end up being the last hurdle we ever face. I feel without the unity of the board this foundation may be dead in the water. This is a sad day for many people because the foundation could have made a difference and changed so many of our aging population’s lives. I wonder how we can proceed if we cannot all pull together. Could I place an ad in the paper saying we are looking for board members to join our foundation to fill the spaces of the departed? I think one thing which caused this foundation to falter after hitting this bump was the lack of members on the board. We were a group of five individuals trying to accomplish a daunting task, and perhaps this task was too much for just five people to handle.

I truly hope The Bucket List Foundation is not dead. I know this foundation would make a difference in so many peoples lives, and if this doesn’t get off the ground than it is a shame this idea rested in my head instead of someone who could have made it a reality. When we were chugging along I kept thinking of all the peoples lives we were going to change for the better because of this. Now I am afraid I will be thinking how many people’s lives we didn’t change because we just kind of gave up.

I have spoken in posts recently about failure and I feel this is yet another example of failure on my part. I think back and if I would have been more organized and vocal as a leader perhaps this foundation would still be moving forward instead of being stuck in the mud. If you want my opinion; we need more members on the board to make this thing work. I have honestly thought then as I do now that we require members with specialties in the hurdles we are trying to overcome. How can you ask a group of people to come together and figure out how to write a solid business plan? The answer is you can’t. I place full blame on myself for allowing this thing to die down. Like I said earlier I hate that this idea was wasted on me. All I am able to do now is do what I can in hopes the individuals still interested come back together. If we are able to ignite a spark and move towards finding the right people to join the board; I feel confident this thing of ours can come back to life.

If you are interested in knowing more about the foundation you can check it out under “The Bucket List Foundation” in the categories drop down menu. I think some posts may be missing. If so let me know and I can point you in the right direction or give you more information.

It has been a little over a year now since I made the decision to pursue my dream of becoming a professional writer, and things seem to be moving along. I feel I am currently sitting on a unique original idea which could very well be the ticket in helping me realize my dream. In the research I have done I have been unable to find one book which utilizes the style I do. This is not to say they are not out there, but the only thing I have found which is similar is the Dr. Seuss books. I believe this concept and series has real marketability to it. When I compare my finished work to some others that are currently on the market it is clear what I have been able to put together is a superior product.

This is all fantastic and it makes me so excited to know I am this close to realizing my dream. It feels like it is right in front of me just waiting to be snatched up, but for some reason I am afraid to reach out and grab it. Why can’t I take that final step to complete everything? I think what it comes down to is my fear of failure. I have failed at everything I have tried to accomplish in my life, and the thought of failing at this is terrifying. I feel like this is my last shot at accomplishing the last dream I have left. If I fail than what do I have left to cling to in hopes of becoming more than I currently am?

I originally thought I would realize my dream through writing poetry. I thought this right up until I realized there is no future in this type of writing. I was a bit disappointed to learn all this since I had just written a poetry book with no future projects in mind. I really wasn’t sure where to go from here since all I really knew how to do was expressing myself through what I called poetry. I have no writing training to speak of, and my grammar skills are at a fourth grade level. I thought for sure I was dead in the water.

I currently have one book “Trapped Within My Illness” which is currently under review by “Graywolf Press.” I feel this poetry collection is better than the three I had previously written, but I am not expecting much to come of this. I have all but stopped looking for publishers to review my work, but if I come across one I will for sure submit my manuscripts to them. I love doing this so I will continue to write poetry and self-publish my work in hopes of once I start doing readings people may be interested in owning something I have written. If not I really won’t be disappointed, because I love the emotional release writing poetry brings to me.

Once I realized there was no career in writing poetry I was kind of at a loss for what to do next. I know when I first started this blog I had dreams of one day having fifty-thousand visitors a week, and that I would be making enough money to live off of with just the advertising alone. I again had to face the realization that this blog will more than likely never receive fifty-thousand visitors a year let alone a week. I was a bit saddened by this at first, because I love doing this blog so much and it would have been great to become a career blogger. Knowing this to be true has caused a bit of a conundrum. I am afraid because I love doing this so much that it is taking my creative time and energy away from other projects. I battle back and forth contemplating if I should slow down and take a step back in order to work on other projects. I think I would have a hard time giving this up though.

Since I started this dream I have come up with many different book ideas. There were some I thought were great then after further consideration I decided to scrap them. Then there were other ideas I still think are great and they would be a blast to work on. These ideas are just sitting there with no work being done towards completing them. The problem with these ideas is they are all more than likely to take me a year or three to complete. Considering my personality I am unsure of my ability to write something so lengthy. I also do not have enough confidence in the ideas themselves to spend three years on something which may or may not ever become a reality.

It was in one of my ideas though that I feel I have found my talent and voice in such a unique way that this idea may be the one which helps me realize my dream of becoming a professional writer; my “Dylan Thomas” series. I have already written two installments in the series, and I have another two hundred or so ideas just waiting to be put to paper. This series is based and written around my youngest son Dylan. In the manuscripts I have finished thus far I have been able to include my other kids in the story as well. This makes working on them so personal and enjoyable. These are picture books which are written entirely in rhyming format. This format and the way I present them are currently to my knowledge not being done. I was really surprised when I wrote the first one just how well the story flowed. When I finished the first and second book it honestly felt like magic. I had never written something I have actually been proud of, until I wrote these two books. I hired an illustrator and thus “Dylan Thomas: Finds His Courage” was self-published. I have received nothing but positive feedback from the book, and everyone who read the next installment “Dylan Thomas: Bedtime Songs” have said that this version is far better than the first. I figured I was all ready to start submitting these books to literary agents.

Nicole looked into what all goes into trying to find a children’s literary agent and what she discovered was that it is best to have multiple stories to submit to them so they can see that your idea is not just a one and done deal. It was decided that the best course of actions was to write a few more manuscripts to include with the query letter we planned on sending to agents. I have known about this for around two months, yet I have not spent a minute working on it. There may have been times I got prepped to start on a title, but I ended up working on something different. I have been just floored for why I have not been more proactive on finishing these projects. My most recent hurdle was creating an outline for each story, and day after day it went un-worked on. Well last week I got a rush of creativity and finished completed outlines for four additional stories. I have yet to take the next step to begin completing them.

I wonder what the hold-up is. I make the time to work on my poetry and blog posts, but I have been avoiding actually working on the one thing which will further the possibility of realizing my dream. I then realized perhaps I am putting this off because once I finish these and start sending them off to agents, and I don’t get picked-up then I may be faced with the stark reality that my stuff may not be good enough. I think if I was faced with such a reality I would be utterly devastated since these children’s books seem to be where my talent is at.

I need to make the time and take a courageous leap of faith and finish these next few manuscripts. I need to get them out to agents to see if there is any reality in my dream. I would rather know now in year two or three that the possibility of my dream coming true is close to zero. I would rather know now then spend another five years chasing something that is a long shot. Right now I have a quality, original and well written children’s books which can be turned into an ongoing series aimed at children ranging in age from 1 to 11. If this doesn’t get picked up I am honestly not sure I am able to top this complete idea.

Even though I know very little about it; I just can’t help but love poetry. I love the way I am able to express my inner most emotions and capture them on paper. I am not educated on what the various forms of poetry are; I just write. When I was younger I would write a few then toss them aside, but I would share them with very few people. I would get words stuck in my head, these words were so intense and jumbled I would have to grab a piece of paper and just write them down. I never kept anything that I wrote, but I wish I would have. I also used to write short stories, but sadly those were tossed as well. In college I would get stoned out of my mind and write some kick ass papers. I some how managed to get A’s on 95% of them. I really wish I would have kept them, especially my papers which basically got me kicked out of a Crown College (A private Christian school.) I only just started keeping my writings, and thanks to the wonderful internet I am able to share them with whoever stops by.

I was first turned onto poetry when I read the book “Where The Sidewalk Ends” by Shel Silverstein.  I loved everything about this book. The way it flowed and captured my imagination was fantastic. I vowed in my young dreamer way that someday I would write poetry that would appear in a book. My other inspiration which enthralled me was the Dr. Seuss books. His books seemed so magical. I wanted to write stories that emulated that certain flow which made his books so great (I sort of modeled my children’s books off his style.) I was later influenced by Dylan Thomas, Sylvia Plath, Jim Morrison, and Edgar Allan Poe  to only name a few. These inspirations made me want to be a writer. This was always a dream I have had, but never thought anything would ever come of it. It was one of those things you store deep inside. The only time it is mentioned is in a “wouldn’t that be great” conversation.

As I grew up I still held onto this dream of becoming a writer, but focused very little on honing my craft. I cannot remember the last grade I was in where I was really present and trying. I was a space case who cared little about school; because of this I learned very little about grammar and sentence structure which still stunts me to this day. I remember in fifth grade I wrote a short story about something or other. I handed it in and I remember the teacher making a comment about how someday I would become a writer. I do not remember this teacher’s name, but her words have been the words that have always kept the fire burning inside of me. I bet you she probably doesn’t even remember making that comment; yet I carried her words with me for twenty years, and it has given me hope.

So now here I am. My first book was published by a shady publishing house so I consider that work gone, and I do not consider this as an accomplishment because technically my book wasn’t really published. I self published my next two poetry books which is great but it is not the same feeling as having an agent tell you one of the larger publishing houses has agreed to publish your work. Poetry is a dead art form and there is not much demand for it these days. I think most current poets don’t even bother trying to publish their work; they are just content with it being on their blog, or on one of the many poetry websites. Seeing your work on a computer screen is nothing like seeing your book in print.

I haven’t been able to write any kind of poetry since I published those last two books I think that was back in September. I went through a similar drought after my first book got published. I think what happens is it is emotionally draining process. I tap into the sap of my soul and pour out the love and pain in my life. When I start writing I just can’t stop it is like one right after the other it is truly a magical experience. The problem is I just don’t know how good my stuff is. I have received a handful of reviews located on my website http://thephilosophyofme.com/book-reviews.html. One of my favorite reviews which aren’t located on my website is from Simone at http://spontaneousoverflow.com/wordpress/?p=1751, Even though this review does not necessarily paint my writing in the most positive light; I still seem to like it. I would love to take several writing courses at schools to hone my skills. I think my mind is a perfect tool it is just dull at the moment.    

I wish I lived during the time when poetry was considered an art, and heralded by the people. I have been doing research and literary agents will not represent poets, there is just no market for it. This sucks because I am currently working on three other poetry books, but I am getting to the point where I say to myself why even bother putting in the time for something that will never be read? The question I have is should I continue to work on my poetry projects or just focus on something different? I am really excited about my Tao Te Ching poetry book. I think this one will be my best yet, but should I even take the time? I really think the only way I am going to find readers is through doing live readings; which I hope to do my first few in January. I figure this will be the test to really gage if my work is any good. My goal is to get a local following, and one day become the main headliner, if I am able to do this then I can take some satisfaction that my work has not fallen on deaf ears.

In a few more hours 2010 will be coming to an end. I cannot decide whether this is a good or bad thing. I always fear the beginning of a new year because I hate the mystery and uncertainty. I am happy I went another year without hearing the words “terminal cancer,” for this I am extremely grateful. I would say for sure this was an up and down year. On the positive side I can say I am now into my second year of my fifteen year plan, but unfortunately this is also a negative. I started with so many good ideas, which I wished could have been put in print, unfortunately I have scraped many of my book ideas, because I feel they were a waste of time. My pursuit of my dream has caused many issues at home which I am not going to get into on this post. It is amazing to me how the pursuit of my dream has yielded such negativity. Living by my ego driven desires has caused many issues. I cannot seem to shed this destructive force. I hope this New Year brings me a step closer to realizing my dream, and I hope this brings positive things instead of negative.

I had a goal to get my poetry out to the public, and had a goal to do two readings by the end of this month, but I keep pushing it back. At first I said I need a few copies of my books, and then I would put myself out there, then it was I will do a reading once I get my business cards. I received my business cards and then said I will do one after I come up with a set list. Sadly to date I have not worked on my set list, in the fear of putting myself out there. I am scared to stand in front of a crowed and read my poetry in fear I will be rejected. Since my poetry is so personal I fear if I my poetry is rejected then that in turn means I am being rejected as a person. I really hope I am able to overcome this fear in 2011 because I want my voice to be heard.

January will mark the beginning of the second year of this blog. I am proud of myself for keeping it going this long. I am amazed I still have new things to write about on a daily basis. I am not so happy with my limited readers though. I was expecting larger growth then what I currently have. Rambling has told me if I am writing for stats or to the readers then I am not really a writer. His words of advice along with the feedback from my wife and some of my dedicated readers meant a lot to me this year. I am pleased in that category, if anything I can say I made a few new friends. I have enjoyed pouring my heart and soul into this thing. It has been a great outlet which I feel has kept me sane. There were many times I was at the point of really losing it and on the path to a certain trip into the loony bin, but my writing has saved me time and time again. For this I am grateful.    

I really think 2011 will be my make or break year. If I do not see some significant progress in my quest for my dream I may need to shorten up my plan to a two or three year goal. I hope this is the year I find an agent and get my kids books off the ground. I hope this year I will develop a local readership to get my poetry heard. I hope this year I can prove I am a good husband and father. I hope this year my spirituality will grow, and I will be closer to understanding and live in harmony with the Tao. I hope this year brings joy and beauty to my readers. I hope this year will bring The Bucket List Foundation closer to becoming a non-profit so we can help those who are in need. I hope this year I learn to live in the moment instead of fearing the future. Finally I hope this year I do not hear the words “terminal cancer.”

A while ago I wrote a post about my current projects. Since then a few things have been finished and a few of my projects have been altered, because I am a shameful promoter I would like to give an update on my progress. Things have been progressing nicely although there are some tedious things causing me to dread the process. Feedback is always needed.

Dylan Thomas: This is a children’s book series written in poetry form. The goal is to create stories which appeal to ages 2-10. I want the rhyming and lush drawings to not only draw the kids in, but also make the stories enjoyable for the parents as well. I have completed the first story “Dylan Thomas: Finds His Courage.” Currently it is in the illustration phase and will be released the end of September. I hope to have the next installment “Dylan Thomas: Bedtime Songs” I hope to have this available for sale by February 2011 or sooner.

This series is probably the only way I will make any money from my writing, and hopefully this series will help me land a literary agent. The stories will follow the same flow as far as the rhyming poetry, but the illustrations will change. I think this is exciting because it will keep things fresh. The illustrator Jeff Chia has one more page to complete, and my sister Cailee is doing the editing. I hope to have everything but together by September 1st. This will allow me a month to ensure everything looks good on the actual book. I am a quarter done with the next installment.

Yin; A poetry chapbook chronicling my dark side. I have already finished this book, and should be released before November 2010.

This is completed with all poems in my journal. I just need to type and edit. I hope to have this out by November. I will either sell “Yin” and “Yang” separately or combine them into one book. If I were to combine them into one I would set it up where “Yin” is on one side and “Yang” on the other. I am planning on setting them up as pocket books.

Yang; A poetry chapbook chronicling my light side. I have already finished this book, and should be released before November 2010

Politico; Working Title This poetry chapbook focuses on my political and theological perspectives. This book is also finished with an expected release date before November 2010.

This book will contain my political, philosophical, and theological points of view. There is a website called Politico, so I am unsure if the name is copyrighted or not. If it is I will have to get their blessings to use their names. There were plenty political poems in “My Descent into Madness,” and seemed to be well received.

The Mind of a Madman: (working title) this is a novel written in poetry form describing the inner workings of a psychopath in the making, and his journey into madness, starting from the time of conception up until… the rest will be a surprise. This has been a difficult book to work on, the places these poems take me is very dark. If I spend too much time there I may become a product of my words.

I have been all over the place in writing this one. I am jumping around to different phases of the main characters’ life. I am planning on telling this story strictly in poetry form or if I should add some narrative to it. This is taking longer than I expected, because I can only stay a short time in this mans mind.

The Philosophy of Me: The life and mind of no one special: This will be a book based off 365 days of my blogging entries. This will appeal to my fans wanting all my entries in print, and introduce the site to new readers. I will also use this as part of my portfolio.

I received an e-mail from a reader saying she would purchase this even though it is just an edited version of my blog. I suppose if one person would enjoy it than others may as well.

My Journey Through Taoism; This will include every verse from the Tao Te Ching along with my quest into understanding and living the Tao. Many books are written by experts. I hope to relate to readers who are new to Taoism by explaining my journey seeking understanding. At the end of each chapter I will be including a poem based off the verse. I do not want to rush this; so I am unaware of a release date 

This will be written in real time chronicling my quest into understanding Taoism. This book is the reason I stopped adding verses in my blog. I don’t want too many books to cross pollinate. I am enjoying this project because I can spend a few weeks working on each verse which will really bring me closer to the Way. In writing this in the perspective of someone seeking the Way it may help others understand it better and assist them on their journey. 

The Humor In Theology; I was originally going to write a descriptive timeline and the evolution of religion. I realized this book would only appeal to a certain audience. I was becoming overwhelmed with the mighty scope of this project. I decided to stick with the theology aspect but instead write it in a humorous way. I think this will be informative as well as funny.

I changed this from a serious educational book into a comedy. I will look into religions of the past and current beliefs and point out the goofiness of what people believe. There is a religion in Africa which believed their God vomited up the entire universe. This is just one of the silly beliefs people hold onto. It is amazing how people completely abandon logic in the name of faith.

The Philosophy of Quotes: Everyone loves quotes, and it seems each person may walk away with different perspectives on the meaning of these quotes. This book explains my philosophical view on the meaning of quotes. I hope to turn this into multiple volumes; each volume will be broken down by letters of the alphabet. I am excited to take a deeper look at my favorite quotes. 

I thought I would enjoy this one, but I have been running into a little bit of frustrations. My mind will not shift into this mode, which is holding this bad boy up.

Deceived: (working title.) This book examines how the Christian religion has allowed itself to be destroyed by the word of man. I have read the Bible a number of times; once because of faith, once as a theologian, and once as a skeptic. You would be amazed how much the bible has been changed to not only create copyrights, but to change the original meaning of the “Word of God” to fit mans needs. This book will be written entirely on a non-biased theological way looking strictly at the Word.

If I want to properly do this one I will need to focus 100% of my attention on it. I will need to simultaneously read three to four separate versions of the Bible. I started this awhile back and read the first couple chapters of Genesis, and it made my head hurt. I really think this project has potential, but with the amount of time I have to work on my writing it would take a year or two and I am not sure if I want to make that type of commitment on something which may not reap what I sowed.

On a side note I have thought of releasing my poetry books with commentary as far as what I was feeling and the meaning. I tend to write in abstract ways and I have had people tell me they get lost in finding the true meaning. I just wonder if this is sacrilegious with poetry because poetry is meant to be subjective to the reader. I am worried my poems may lose some of its luster if I add commentary. On the flip side some of my dedicated readers may care enough to know the story behind the poem.

What are your thoughts? Do you think I may be wasting my time with some of these books? I am starting my quest today to find an agent and I wonder if they want to see complete projects or is a concept enough to wet their whistle.