Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Writing with Depression and Anxiety

I don't know if I've ever told the blog this, but I have anxiety and depression. 

Fact: I've never been diagnosed by a doctor. Fact: I know myself well enough to describe how I feel. 

Medically, Anxiety is described as a nervous disorder characterized by a state of excessive uneasiness and apprehension, typically with compulsive behavior. (Trust me, I've had my fair share of compulsive regrets.)

And Depression is described as a mood disorder that causes a persistent feeling of sadness and hopelessness as well as a lost in interest. 

Together, the two of these can create an explosion of chaos within each other. It's like mixing two great colors together but constantly getting brown. It's somewhat frustrating. 

The thing about the two of these mental illnesses within myself is that sometimes I feel more anxiety than I feel depression, and sometimes I can't pinpoint why I feel the way I do--like why I'm happy now, but how I can be stuck in a mood two days from now.

Though I've sought help for these problems, I've found that writing is a saving grace. I wish I could thoroughly explain how writing makes me feel--the endorphins that are released--but I can't. I wish I could sit inside of your chest, so I could simply show you because I know it'd be easier that way.

But writing literally opens me up in a way that's terrifyingly beautiful--like crazy beautiful. I mean, have you ever written while in a mood? You get some psychotic scenarios, but you also get really extravagant ones, and you wonder how the hell that happened, but then you end up with an entire chapter based off one sentence.

It's completely magical.

This post isn't particularly special, but I felt the need to share my experience on writing with depression and anxiety, and how having a mental illness doesn't have to hinder you or your dreams.

Honestly, I bet you could reach the stars if you wanted to.

Here's a clip of writing from my latest manuscript, Rubatosis. Every aspect of this book is covered with my inner problems, and I'm okay with that. Everyone should be.

"She watched the sun in the distance, fading west, and she took note of how it touched every surface. Nothing was left behind, not even her eyes. It was all these small things, and she wanted to cry. Was it that bad, she thought. Was it so, so very bad that she couldn’t see? Maybe this place really did hold the key that drove people mad, and all it took was a turn and one small thing. The past moments mimicked a kaleidoscope in her head, and what she realized was that she wanted to spend this time with Noah, and she set off to find him.
Ila walked to his shack, still pressing her arms against her abdomen, and she didn’t knock when she entered the dimly lit room. Noah acknowledged her presence. He was seated on a rocking chair in the corner with his guitar in hand. He played a gentle melody, and the tune echoed against the walls and vibrated in her ears. The chord progression he chose mimicked the wings of a bird in flight, and he picked the strings intricately before he began to sing. Then he closed his eyes as the words of the song took him away to a place of serenity and heartache.
Ila sat on the ground before him, legs crossed, and she studied the shadows in his face. His eyelashes laced together; his uneven lips opening and parting to the lyrics, and his facial expressions slightly changing with the chords. She could tell that his passion for music was fueled by the brokenness inside of him, and it was one of the best things she’d ever witnessed. In this moment, he was more of the moon than he’d ever been, shining so brightly in this darkness they’d created. She had a hard time fathoming how he existed in her world. Up to this point, she had heard him sing multiple songs, but she still hadn’t grown tired of it. She was obsessed with his voice and the power behind it.
Noah rocked in his chair, moving to the tempo, and the song went on for minutes. They didn’t speak. He didn’t open his eyes, and he was relieved that he didn’t have to answer her question to where he had been the last few days. After all, there was no such a thing as a good lie."

Till next time.

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

WANTED: Beta and Critique Readers

Friends, I've done it. I'VE COMPLETED THE MANUSCRIPT. 
(Refer to previous blog post where I sign my name in blood and make promises, here.)

What this simply means is that I need you. I need everyone's help. 

I am in search for a few beta readers and critique readers to help perfect my manuscript so that I can begin the agenting/query process. 

If you've ever been in search of an agent, then you know exactly where I'm coming from. 

Here are the basics: 

Beta Readers: I need beta readers for content of the manuscript and feedback. Does the manuscript hold a solid theme that prevails to the end? Do the characters develop in a correct manner? Could you relate to the characters in a way that would make you want to purchase the book?

Critique Readers: I need two critique readers who love dealing with grammar. I'll admit, I haven't been too particular with comma placements in this first draft, and you'll probably find a homophone or two. But that's why I need you. Along with grammar, feel free to judge the content too. Every little bit helps. 

The novel is about 54,000 words--give or take. Though I haven't started the query process, here is a rough overview of the story, Rubatosis

At ten-years-old, Noah Dean Turner learns that he has a disorder with his heart. The sound is more of a tripled thud-thud-fail than a resounding steady drum. Paralyzed by this new truth, Noah becomes determined to find the missing piece of logic in the world. He wants to know if his life, and everything in it, amounts up to anything at all.
 By Eighteen, Noah has collected over one hundred books. The words and characters stain his brain, morphing him into a boy with a knack for music, an interest for birds, and a deep addiction to literature.
 Quickly, Noah discovers that many of the books he’s read relates to the people he knows, so he labels them, giving them stories that play out in their actual life. But after an unfortunate series of events followed by the death of his granddad and living with his promiscuous aunt, Noah sets out to discover his own story. By chance, he comes upon Camp Neodesha, a retreat center where many people go for solace, but where Noah is slowly going mad.
 Then Noah meets a writer. From her one green eye to her one brown, Noah doesn’t understand how she makes sense in the world he’s created for himself. Worse than that, however, is that Noah can’t seem to figure her out; he can’t place a story on her that he’s already read. His desire to unveil her only brings him closer to her, but Noah knows that he is fatal. He is a ticking time bomb, and at any moment, he feels his heart could literally beat right out of his chest.
It is best to contact me here: http://agentqueryconnect.com/index.php?/topic/33765-chapter-by-chapter-swaps-rubatosis/ 

But if you don't have an Agent Query account, feel free to leave a comment below or fill out a "Contact Me Form" in the right column.

I'm really excited about this, friends.

Wish me luck as I push onward.

Warmest Regards,


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