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Lori's Writing Notebook

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Short Stories and Poems

Gave Up My Rocking Chair for a Rock Star

Posted by Lori on July 5, 2014 at 9:20 AM


For the last nineteen years I have pretty much lived a predictable life involving work, church, and family.  I have never had a desire to do much more than that.  I don't go shopping, clubbing or travel with friends, I don't host parties or go to parties.  I just stay close to home and live as simple as possible.

I figured this road was heading to an even simpler life including a rocking chair and lots of books and I was really okay with that scenario.  I welcomed it.

Less than a year ago things started to change for me, I began to have ideas of writing.  As the ideas came, I let them manifest into small realities, one such is this writing blog.  It took courage to put my writing online in a public format. This site is my "notebook" where I play around with things, explore my thoughts, attempt to be creative, follow writing prompts to see what comes.   I have enjoyed writing here.

After reading several Christian fiction books, after being grabbed and pulled into the stories, after feeling the heart cries and prayers of the characters, I knew I wanted to write the same types of stories.  A new desire formed in me to write books.  The ideas were flashing through my mind and the excitment grew.  I'm going to be an author!

Reality check: "How is that possible?"  "I didn't go to college for this."  

Yet the desire was there and I determined to discover  what was involved in the process.  I learned that it was indeed possible for me to write books and as in art there are all sorts of opinions on the process.  Some say there are formulas to follow, rules, and a certain process must occurr.  Others say that if there is a passion, the process will evolve.  I determined to follow the evolution process.

The evolution of anything comes from a need.  It is then cultivated into a way and becomes a means to an end which is its change from where it started to what it is now.  As I journey on this writing road, I have been experiencing  the need to learn and undertand many aspects of what I want to write.  I get the idea but no clue how to develope it.  For instance, one day I was writing in my car at an ocean view park.  When I was finished writing and was ready to drive away, the idea for my first novel hit me.  I re-opened my notebook (the paper one) and wrote nearly 15 more pages capturing the story I would eventually write.  What a thrill!

At this point I had a story complete with a beginning, middle and end.  I knew the choices the characters would make, I knew the trials that would befall them and I knew that this story could have others written from it. What I didn't have were names, faces, occupations, location and other essential details.  I knew that whatever would come of these characters would require research on my part.  So I waited for inspiration.

I collect ideas for my book whenever something sparks my interest.  If it thrills me in life, it will thrill my readers. This is my thinking anyway, based on the style of my writing.  

If you have read the last few posts on my Walk of Faith blog and even a couple on this Writing blog, you know that I have been trying to understand my facination with American Idol winner Caleb Johnson.  It has been a whirlwind of processing for me.  I learned that the American Idol show is addictive and I never want to watch it again because I did not like needing to see the next episode. However,  I was so struck by the sound of Caleb's voice that I am grateful for having watched season 13.  

My obsession with him has evolved into research for my book and the end result is that Caleb is the inspiration for the protagonist in my story, at least in the singer/songwriter respect.  The research continued and I read many books about the music industry, songwriters, etc.  After gaining such knowledge I  began to understand the news articles I read about the up and coming musicians from American Idol.  It was all starting to come together.  Yet there was something missing.  

I had no passion for this industry.  I have never followed a band or been a groupie let alone a fan-girl.  I have only been to two concerts in my teenage years and I did not like either of them. Essentially this music world is new to me. Passion grows though, this I also have learned.  

During the days after the season finale, I was hooked on watching Caleb's performances on American Idol and every other video of him via YouTube.  His voice pierced my soul and had the power to change me.  The moment I realized something had changed in me was while watching a video recorded by his hometown band's drummer, Colten Emery.  I watched that video of Caleb doing a show at the Orange Peel in Asheville NC. It was when he went home for a visit before the finale.  Caleb says "I want you to feel it, alright" and I DID!  I felt it from my lviing room watching a video.  

In that moment I made a decision to go see Caleb in concert on the American Idol tour.  I needed to exererience it... not only for research for my book, but for myself.  There is so much power in his voice...  it takes hold of my insides and lifts me way up there with his range. I am left breathless and happy and free of all thoughts.  Now that is power!  Boston Idol tour, here I come.

With that ticket purchased, and the thrill of going to a concert for the first time in over 25 years, I started more research.  I opened up my mind to discover more artists than just Caleb Johnson.  Twitter has opened many opportunities for me to connect with people in the music industry.  It has been more than eye opening, it has been life changing.  I am now filled with passion for what they do and I am determined to support those I can. 

One such opportunity for me was meeting and hearing Jillian Jensen live last week.  She posted an invite on Twitter for a local show and I went.  I met her, I talked to her, I cried, I laughed, we hugged, and she private messaged me after I left without saying goodbye.  Oh the heart swells when touched by genuine love for others. 

It was such an overwhelming positive expereince that the desire to meet more people like this was growing.  I wondered who else I might like to see.  After checking the Christian concert tours and seeing none in my area, I remembered someone who has also inspired me, Phillip Phillips.  I discovered he is touring and will be nearby in just a few days.  Without hesitation, I bought a ticket to his show and I am going on Sunday.  YIKES!  What is happening to me?

Now I am going to two concerts in four days and I am just over-the-moon excited about it.  I am certain that I will have enough passion to write about my singer/songwriter character after I "feel" these concerts live.  This kind of research is more fun than reading books from the library. 

Now, I wonder what other occupations I can write into my story.  I suppose it depends on how much more fun I want to have this summer.  

Categories: My Book Journey

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