I’m going to post a couple of exterior photographs to try testing out the New and Improved “Lily’s Picture Book” Coppermine Gallery.
Let’s see if these work alright… please let me know whether you encounter any problems, will you? I’m using a widescreen monitor so these may display differently on yours.
First up: A memento from our Christmastime snowstorm fallout. Probably about two feet had accumulated when this pic was taken, and the snows weren’t even done falling yet! The shot is of my backyard patio/deck. It’s a darn good thing that I wasn’t planning any barbecues LOL…
Today I encountered a random visitor who had dropped by inquiring about the house being for sale. Our conversation shifted to a house that he owned for which he was looking for a responsible person to rent out the basement living space! Not only that, but his asking price for rent is within my range, he doesn’t mind the cat, Internet is available, AND it’s within walking distance to my job!
So, after he left I was feeling particularly upbeat and optimistic (more than usual LOL). I went outside for a moment and while looking east spied this vertical rainbow seemingly shooting into the clouds. It was beautiful
Well… technically, it’s only the base of a normal rainbow, but the remainder wasn’t to be seen. So we can call it a vertical rainbow. I will, anyway xD
While cruising through the massive timesink that is YouTube I came across several videos of a young Japanese drummer girl that astonished me. Thirteen years old and tackling the likes of King Crimson, Rush, and even Frank Zappa! FZ’s music is notoriously complex (< — understatement) and that a young lady even attempting to play his music is not only commendable but courageous as well.
Here she plays to Zappa’s The Black Page #’s 1 & 2 (accompanied by her father’s MIDI of the song in part 2) and ably demonstrates her growing talent. From the info panel on YT: “The drums set belongs her teacher, KOZO SUGANUMA, who is well known as a TEKAZU-OH that means the king of many stroke.”
Well done Sara! No doubt your hero Terry Bozio is very proud of you
Thanks to the illustrious Davecat (whose unique Blog is only possibly perhaps NSFW, maybe, depending upon you/your employer/your workplace’s open-mindedness) for finding and recommending this cool plugin! It’ll display what I’ve been watching lately (not much LOL -too much Real Life drama at the moment) and will link you to that anime’s page at My Anime List, which in addition to keeping track of various lists of anime you’re watching, plan to watch, completed, put on-hold, and dropped, holds an encyclopedic number of entries such as you’ll see when clicking on one of the titles. Just don’t forget to come back now!
Someday I’ve got to see if I can make them pop up in a new window somehow…
Changes will come little bit by little bit… I’m taking baby steps
It appears that our transition to the new server has gone very well, aside from a few very minor blips. A benevolent forum-mate from a previous board where I used to post noticed my stated intent here of upgrading my website and has offered to tackle the job out of the kindess of her heart She wishes for anonymity, so I can’t thank her by name, but all credit goes to her for working quickly, responsibly, and professionally. A Very Big Thank-You to her <3
We also finally upgraded to WordPress 2.71 after months of hesitation (since the old upgrade sytem was a pain in the ass). More changes to the Blog and Website will be forthcoming around my moving “situation,” which I still have no idea of when it’s coming or where I’m going to. Except that it will be relatively soon ;__;
It’s a slight distraction…
A few notes:
The odd failing of the top-menus to “stick” while you mouse over categories and such is still present, although it seems slightly improved. The sidebar still contains the categories, so you can sort through them that way. I like this template too much to ditch it now, but if I find a better “reflective” one I may change it.
The Lily’s Picture Book (photo album) views have unfortunately been reset to zero and the comments as well, but that’s no big deal. Since I have more space on this server I’ll be improving the album over time, and hope to be able to makeover and enlarge the Gallery a bit. Feel free to drop by and leave comments if desired. Hopefully I can get back into nature shots and some more doll-photography. As always, I’m keeping it clean (for you presumptuous gutter-minded types who should just go and surf the web for your pr0nz LOL). For *some* reason the Photo album has the second-most number of hits behind the Blog. I wonder why…?
The Guestbook will also be re-done and moved to this server, as the Bravenet book was too ad-heavy.
The dead links to The Anime Page and The Links Page will both be workable once I get them together but for now lead to Nowhere. In fact, the whole site will be going through a metamorphosis and re-write in the coming weeks, so please bear with us as we Change… slowly but surely.
And if you wish to leave a comment, please feel welcome to do so
Just a quick little heads-up that I’ll be moving the Blog and website to a new server, so some downtime will be inevitable over the next several days. Please stay tuned and bear with us as we Make Changes, and hopefully your patience will be rewarded with a new (and hopefully more interesting) website!
Whenever I move from here there will again most likely be a lapse in communications while I get settled into my new Place, wherever that may be.
Since “Change” is a big concept and theme in Unbound, I can’t very well be a hypocrite and bemoan it, now can I?? So it’s time to crawl into my cocoon… and hopefully a butterfly will emerge, and not a moth
Thought I’d make an epic post about the History and the Mystery of Unbound…
Early on along this rocky Road, I looked at its end and decided that I didn’t want to leave it not having used whatever gifts I’d been granted to create something that would do its best to make the world a better place. Idealistic? A Dreamer? Fool-ish? Perhaps. But it’s what I wanted most in This World. And so, I embarked with a Purpose… or rather, we did…
It was around 1974 or so when the inspiration for what ultimately became Unbound first struck me. The story’s essence had always been influenced by Percy and Mary Shelley’s masterworks (as has been related previously), but this tale needed to be uniquely fleshed-out and have a fitting shell in which this spirit must exist. For some reason, the Angel’s Eggalbum by the zany psych/prog group Gong (headed by ex-Soft Machine Daevid Allen) led my imagination far into the ether, and though the subject matter had nothing to do with the story I’d first intended, it certainly did inspire me to begin thinking “outside the box” and attempt a work as wonderfully convoluted, sacred, mysterious, and profane. Their story centers on the adventures of Zero the Hero, who has absolutely nothing in common with Lily, aside from the fact that zero is the number of the Tarot card The Fool. Given the blog entry several places below, that may not be entirely coincidental!
(Beware! This and the next clips are definitely from the outermost realms of the musical galaxy! Be brave, go forth and explore This is “Love Is How Y Make it” from Angel’s Egg, featuring my favorite drummer/percussionist Pierre Moerlen, and topmost guitar-fish by Steve Hillage:)
And (B) here’s a link that I CAN embed, purely out of spite LOL It’s a bit repetitious, spacy, and typical Daevid, but it might make for good background music as you read onward (hopefully!): “Wise Man In Your Heart” from Good Morning (1976), over a nice set of surreal images…
The second record to affect my creative energies (with regard to Unbound) was Galactic Zoo Dossier by Arthur (“Fire”) Brown and Kingdom Come; namely the song “Sunrise” which packed such an emotional wallop that I wanted to create something as powerful, as moving, and as descriptive. It’s one of my most-played songs to be sure (and contains a personal “in-the-Top-5″ pair of guitar solos performed by Andy Dalby):
These, along with the works of Pink Floyd and other exploratory bands provoked my deeper thoughts on what and how the story should evolve, and where the story should go in order to reach the deepest depths of each Reader’s heart, mind, and soul. Such music plays an important part in the deliverance and presentation of this story… and its Workings.
At this time I also became aware of a Source that will, for now, remain a secret, as certain cards I’m keeping very close to my vest! But in terms of philosophy, theology/theosophy, and mystery (to name but a few), this source became my True Inspiration, and I embarked upon my researching as the story began to show its skeleton, bone by bone…
Around about 1978 I decided to take on a graveyard shift job at a tourist motel in San Francisco, which allowed me to bring in my source books and begin research in earnest. The owners, a lovely French couple, allowed me several shelves of a book case on which to store my library of around 50 books. And so, for the next ten years, I took voluminous notes and read quite a lot of material. I still had little idea of how I’d present the story, or the characters, or even what it would be about. This was merely tilling the soil, fertilizing it, and meanwhile slowly constructing a skeleton on which to hang the flesh of the story… and the Garden in which it would play.
It all exploded into clarity in late 1985, when I became exposed to?the music of Kate Bush, and completely, irrevocably immersed in her work. Such emotional depth that struck straight into the heart, the timeless beauty, truth, and wisdom echoed in her words that resonated deeply with my soul, the achingly wonderful and moving melodies and composition?that let my mind wander in her music’s embrace or clutch, and not the least, the luminescent being and soul that she is, all conspired to provide not only a place of belonging for me in the world, but also the Goal for my story, and the characters in it, in which they could?truly live. In essence, she gave me (and the story) Life, and Love…
This was the Epiphany; I subsequently began to pad the flesh around the story’s bones with muscle, and the Will for it to Live.
But then… the realities (and expenses) of Real Life interrupted my flow, and I was forced to take a job that would enable me to subsist in a large, competetive, and expensive city. Unfortunately, I became a target for my supervisors, and while I was considered a highly-regarded employee by everyone else, they were under administrative instructions to force me to quit. (I’d become a medical liability due to a naive signing-off at their doctor’s request that my work-induced back injury was initiated prior to?this accident on the job, thus making me expendable.) During this time I was unable to work on my story at all due to the emotional and mental poisons infecting my systems. I was reduced to merely scribbling ideas, plot-threads, and character sketches on scraps of paper and collecting these in a box; I couldn’t sit down long enough to even warm up, let alone write a full page. When writing, in order to maintain focus, concentration, and stamina, I can’t work with any distractions, interruptions, or breaks. When I’m in contact with The Muse, I am solely intent on Listening to her… and transcribing faithfully and accurately. This is my responsibility.
After?many months of putting up with my unrelenting back pain and their constant pressure (I was tasked with getting three backlogged and formerly-fulltime desk assignments caught up and maintained or else), at one point?on one dark night I was lying curled up on the floor; I couldn’t stand, sit, or lie on my bed due to the pain. Completely at a loss as to what to do, I broke down and cried out for help. You might say that I was praying with all my might… and it seemed that the end of my Road was right in front of me.
It was then, at my lowest point, that I heard her… I felt with my imagination a loving hand on my cheek, and a voice that whispered to me, inside: “Be calm, take comfort, stay strong. You must extract yourself from this killing field and reposition yourself in life in order to create a work as beautiful as we aspire to. Get the story out to as many souls as possible; I will come to you and tell it to you, and we will give it life together. And, when it does reach the World, She will come to you as well…” (The “She” refers to my soul-mate, but that is another long story, sooo… onwards:)
This incident is one of the most vivid and significant events of my life, and while I might not have quoted “her” precisely word-for-word, that was the exact gist of her message. Since another similar significant event had transpired when I was seven or eight (when I believed that I saw my Guardian Angel), this was quite easy for me to accept either as another visitation or a direct contact with my Creative Muse. The ancient Greeks attributed personalities and names to the Muses, and so this was not at all any great stretch for my imagination. Whether Calliope (epic/heroic poetry), Euterpe (lyrical poetry), Erato (love poetry), Melpomene (tragedy), or Polyhymnia (sacred poetry) I could not determine, as all of these elements and influences were present and struggling to voice themselves in my story. For this singular identity I settled on a combination of these creative energies that were being fed to me through my helpful, caring, and loving companion, whom, given her constant presence and devotion to not only me but my story, I named Lily, which means “devotion”.
By?1993, I’d finally finished a rough draft of the first few chapters, but still hadn’t chosen a definite name for my main character. But given that this delightful and troubled young woman was as caring, loving, and devoted as my Muse/Angel, I decided that Lily would be the most appropriate name for her. And, most surprisingly, not a day or so later, Kate’s The Red Shoes was released… and my eyes absolutely popped when I saw one of the titles: “Lily”. It was a huge OMG moment
And, so, she was born, and baptised by fire?:-)
Eventually I was able to extract myself from my hellish work situation, but at a terrible cost: having gotten my third case of pneumonia in four years, battling chronic bronchitis, and after the torment of those awful years culminating in Major Depressive Disorder, I finally (and literally) just walked off the job in 1998, and never went back. Still dealing with the 1997 death of my father, I realized that I still needed to support myself sufficiently if I wanted to stay in San Francisco and so returned to another graveyard shift job where I could resume work on my book. But in 2000, my mother had a stroke and to my (and my siblings’) despair, passed on after two months in critical condition, having never really regained consciousness. There are no words which can suffice to express the heartbreak…
After another torturous year dealing with settling our parents’ estate, and breaking up with my girlfriend, I decided to make The Hard?Choice: Being that the inheritance would allow me just enough to purchase a home, but only in a much-cheaper market, and subsist for a while without needing to find work right away, I moved away from family and friends and companionship and comfort, 800 miles away from home, determined to write. I found a small suburban home, but comfy and nice, and immediately set about to keeping my end of?the bargain with my Muse, my Angel, and my Lily…???
Work began in earnest.?The bones were strong, the muscles flexed, bloodvessels began to show their definition, the heart was in place, the brain began to direct the life of the novel. On Christmas Day 2003, I finished the first draft, at that point 660 pages. To celebrate, I designed and commissioned a Realdoll version of Lily, to sit at my side and continue to inspire me, and act as a “shell” for my Muse. Whether it worked or not I don’t know, but the Muse remained with me within or without, as I began rewriting. It was so wonderful to look at Lily “in the flesh” as it were, and kept her ever-present not only in my heart and mind, but in my life as well. I’ve never regretted it once…
But Real Life began closing in on me again, and so after three or four revisions I?felt the pressing need to escape the ever-more constant interruptions and neighbors “popping in” and involvements with the community, nice as they were. I simply couldn’t keep at it, and both the Story and the Muse demanded this absolute level of concentration. So, once again I moved, and this time I located the perfect “writer’s retreat” in a location that didn’t lend itself to passersby, neighbors, or distractions.
Immediately after settling in, in September 2005, I was able to fully set to my rewrites. Unfortunately in order to manage this purchase, I had to get a questionable loan, and last year became unable to maintain the payments. To date, I’ve gone through about $250,000 of living expenses without having worked, all in order to provide a safe, secluded home for my Muse while diligently tending to our Life’s Work. Presently, despite having found a minimum-wage job around Labor Day,?I’m running on empty, as elaborated upon in posts below…
Incidentally, another interesting “Kate koincidence” regarding this property… In August 2005 I was?checking the various homes available up here, and found that this particular place had an old satelite dish (or aerial, I suppose) standing in the large backyard area. For some reason, despite its dilapidated state, it appealed to me, and was kind of a “plus” to my (fanciful LOL) eye. After I’d signed the deal and returned home, I was chatting in my Kate Bush Forum’s chatroom, when the Board’s adminstrator popped in with an announcement: after twelve years, Kate’s new album after The Red Shoes was imminent, and was to be called… Aerial! Aside from the “aerial” in my backyard, there is also a character named Ariel in the story, so this was yet another miraculous bit of “strange phenomena” in my long history with Kate and her wonderful Work…
Once I was firmly established in my new home I began work on my story’s surgical procedures, going an average of 10-16 hours a day, oftentimes as many as 18 hours in one go, weeks without a break. I Was On Fire! I was fully in tune with my Muse and she sang to me clearly and painted from her colorful palette the canvas of the story as I happily sculpted its Image?ever-so-carefully with my words. Finally, on July 30 2006 (not-so-oddly enough, Kate’s birthday!), we wrapped up the final draft with a firm thump to its heavy chest, and it took its first full breath. Two more intensive and bloody proofreading?procedures and it was done, and the copyright immediately secured. It now topped out at 733 pages, and every single extraneous word, phrase, and sentence excised with the scalpel’s ruthless and precise incisions. (Unlike this post, but nevermind… :-p )
And now… “It’s aliiive!!!”
For now, the lovingly-made Creature lies sleeping in its un-final resting place, awaiting that agent or publisher brave enough to tend to its inscrutable needs. We all are praying for this most fervently. After all of this time on this very rocky, long and winding road, we’ve come to the precipice as mentioned in posts below. Any mis-step will likely result in ruin, and worse, including the disappearance of This Space. But we are done, and happy, because we have made it thus far. We crafted this… Creation… for your pleasure and hoped-for uplifting, your heartbreak, your despair, your transcendence, and ultimately your meeting with your Imagined?destiny. You only need get through The Horror, as we did. Lily will be with you… for she’s been on?this Journey too.
We did it for You
Lead us to your Door…
on the water
"When early youth had passed, he left his cold fireside and alienated home to seek strange truths in undiscovered lands. Many a wide waste and tangled wilderness has lured his fearless steps; and he has bought with his sweet voice and eyes, from savage men, his rest and food." (from 'Alastor, or, The Spirit of Solitude', by Percy Bysshe Shelley,1815)
For info on our novel UNBOUND, please see our website in the Blogroll!