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1st Stage

ARE YOU READY? Let’s Step!
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Is it Monday yet? Are we good? Good. Phew. Just checking, because I've been waiting to write this entry for at least two weeks now.

First up, for those who have been following Blue Impulse's progress, I put up the back cover on DA for your use. Click the image and it'll take you there. I know some people have been waiting to see it (coughDylancough), so it's official! I might tweak a few details with the covers before everything is said and done, but I'm rather pleased with the way they came out. The only concern I have now is that, since the book will look like a video game case, I have to do a spine. The last time I did a spine, I had white edges on my book, and it was horrid and unprofessional. Needless to say, I'm a bit scared. Wish me luck?

And now for something I've been anxious about blogging for, as I said, the past two weeks or so. Image and video hosting by TinyPic Elana Johnson just released her second book in her Possession series, entitled "Surrender." She asked us bloggers to blog about a time when we didn't surrender. I will be the first to admit: I am desperately trying to get a hold of both of Elana's books. (I am headed on a library hunt tomorrow.) I had seen her books before, but if it weren't for the AMAZING AND ALL POWERFUL BETH REVIS I probably would have totally missed this opportunity. (Thanks, Beth.)

So, a time when I didn't surrender. Elana said to pick something from our lives where we stood strong and never faltered, a story of inspiration.

The problem with this is that I'm living it right now.

In July of 2011, I made a radical life decision to move to New York City from small-town Ohio. I made all of the arrangements in a month and a half and started my new job at the beginning of September. I had always wanted to move to NYC, but circumstances beyond my control (read: fear) prevented me from doing so. I didn't have enough money. I wasn't smart enough. I wasn't prepared enough. I would be a single white female in a big scary city. But something so crazy and insane happened last July, something that I can't possibly tell you about.

Or maybe I can.

I have a friend. I can't say their name, I can't give their profession, I can't give any details. But I have a friend who means the world to me. A friend who taught me that, every time I thought I was alone in life, I haven't been. I've always had friends and family by my side. That friend lives here in New York City as well, and I came to visit them mid-July. Shortly after my visit, my contact with them completely stopped. They were a missing person, MIA. I found out that they were in some serious deep trouble. Again, I can't be specific, I can't say what kind of trouble. But it escalated to the point quickly where if I did not come to New York City, I would never see them again.

That is why I came to New York. It's always been my dream, yes. But lesson B in today's blog is this, folks: if you have somebody whom you really care for and something happens to them, fight for them as long and as hard as you can. You only live once, and if it means moving across the country to help them (let's hope it doesn't), go for it. But don't go for it just for them. Go for it because they are the ones who help your life make sense, who give it meaning, who make it blossom into color.

Okay, enough of a very, very vague lesson B. One way or another, I got to NYC, living in an apartment outside of my budget, traveling two hours one way to get to my job. My commute involved a train ride, a boat ride, and a short bus commute, and that's just one way. There were several circumstances that built upon each other, and I was finally offered a creative position with a start up. I left my job and the commute (which had grown to three hours due to weekend subway construction). I hoped it would give me some reprieve.

That was the end of April. It's now starting to be the middle of June. I am effectively unemployed and cannot apply for unemployment since I left my job. I have not given up on this position. Every time I call them, they say it's still happening. I am finding other ways to make money in the meantime, though they are small. Now, watch it, I'm not throwing a pity party or using shameless self-promotion here. This is just the way it is right now.

And the way it is right now is that the nights are the worst. They are dark, and lonely, and it's just me in this messy twenty third story room, alone with myself and the voices in my head. Voices telling me I should go back to my other job, even though they're not hiring. The voice of my parents saying it's time to give up, that summer vacation doesn't happen to "real" people. (Sorry if you're reading this, Mom. I'm trying to make a point.) The days are sometimes better. Sometimes. I've been rating my days from 0 to 10, 10 being "walking on clouds" and 0 being "I hate myself." Today was a 7.5. Yesterday was a 2.

But I am not dead. Life will get better. I'm young. I have so much time, as Marina Keegan reminded us. I look out my window and see the buildings of New York City and remember that it's just out there. It's just out there, waiting for me. And I can either sit in this room and sleep in and be lethargic and sorry for myself or I can get up and do something about it. I can either fret about the fact that I don't know where my next paycheck is coming from, or I can go write.

Frequent readers know I'm mid-Camp NaNoWriMo right now. I love NaNo every November, and I typically don't do it in other months, but Blue Impulse seized me around the proverbial neck and wouldn't let go. And I'm glad it hasn't, because while it looks like a story about video games, it takes in elements from my own personal story and spins them in a new light. It's not directly autobiographical; I 'write what I know.' The main character, Miranda, is very much a victim of her circumstances -- small town girl with mother who seemingly only wants the best for her, with little regard to her own individual choices -- but it takes her a long time to break free from the chains she has placed on herself. The story is told in a set of flashbacks going back and forth, from New York City 2010 to Zanesville, Ohio, 2004. (I didn't mean to do that. I hate writing about Zanesville. It just lent itself well, like Cedar Point did for Cosmic.) It takes Miranda more than six years to escape from her demons, and her story doesn't end with the last page.

Neither does yours. Neither does mine. If there are demons that threaten you, rise up from your bed. Get out of your stuffy apartment, or house, or desk cubicle, or wherever you are. Believe that you can trust yourself, that the move was a good idea, that tomorrow will be a better day. But be on the move. Go to your happy place, a place where you know you can be free, undisturbed, but still open. It may be a couch, or a favorite car, or a park. My happy place is 96th and Park Avenue, three blocks from here. There is a little strip of park there with trees and benches, and beyond that to the northern horizon, the Metro-North train tracks go elevated. One can stand there and watch the trains come in and out of the city, headed out to places unknown, headed in to Grand Central, fifty blocks south.

If you have a happy object, take it with you. Something that brings you comfort, like a security blanket or a can of Mountain Dew. My security item is my copy of Across The Universe by Beth Revis. Beth is someone whom I admire, not just because I can but because she really is a story of someone not giving up. This isn't cross promotion, I swear. I've met her in person, and she really is this awesome. She signed my copy of AtU, giving me good luck with my books. I was mid-Cosmic rewrite at the time, still working at the job that ate all of my free time. The sky didn't look any clearer from there than it did now, I suppose.

The world continues to turn. It rains. A lot. I wake up, I force myself to eat, I write until my fingers bleed, I sleep. I don't know how I'm going to eat tomorrow, much less make it to Ohio in July for a wedding I'm playing for. But I have faith, I have hope, and I have my books. Right now, that's all I've got going for me. But I will not give up. I will not force myself back into a job that hates me. I will not move back to Ohio. My good friend got me here, and I have realized that it truly is my dream to live in New York. I am staying, no matter what.

The name of the flag I wave is "Dreamer." It is not a white flag, but rather a purple one, a royal color to be waved in celebration. A flag that says "I will not give up in what I believe in. I will never surrender."

Okay, before I either A: bore you all to death or B: cry my eyes out some more, I'm going to leave you with one more quick thing. The YouTube video below is a promotional video for Tokyo DisneySea, a theme park in Japan. (The amusement park junkie strikes again!) The reason I'm posting it is not only because the video's really cool, but because the song is one of my favorites. My favorite line from the song is the one right before the final chorus, the one that says "The name of the flag I wave is 'Dreamer.'" I use that line all the time now, and it just came out naturally in my blog post, so I felt I had to share the song with you. It's mostly in Japanese, although some lyrics are in English as well; it's also the official video, not a fanmade production. I hope you enjoy it. :)

Are we done yet? Good.

memorialrainbow: (Default)
First things first: I got the cover done for Rhythm Buster 200X: Blue Impulse done last night and I just HAD to share it with you all:

Rhythm Buster 200X: Cover
by ~cheesecubeaddict on deviantART

Doesn't this look AWESOME! It looks a little empty around the edges, but I have to give it some room to print when the actual book comes out. The book itself will be great, but I love the cover that I'm creating. The outside of the book itself will look like it's a game; I'll post the back cover when I'm done with it.

One more thing I want to update ya'll with before I jet out: you all know about my alter egos, right? When I do fan-based projects, I often use other names. I know you know DJ Aoiko; she does all of my fan-song covers. Another girl who looks suspiciously like Blue named Doujinno Sosai does all of my fanfiction, and she has a new blog over at Blogspot! She'll be covering not only the fanfics I write but also nearly anything cute and fluffy. I encourage you to check it out: she's over at


I wonder if you remember.
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So before I decide to call it an early night, I'd like to give a bit of insight into the world I am writing about in my Camp NaNoWriMo novel.

I mentioned before that it is inspired by Dance Dance Revolution, but because I respect copyright and intellectual trademarks, I didn't want to write a story on DDR itself. To do so would be infringement. But because I do respect intellectual property like this is how I have so many of SOSI/Cap-Sid's own "brand names." LaPostale, Karuko, Burger Fender, Middleford, names like those enable me to tell the story and have the character seem natural without infringing.

Rhythm Buster 200X is part of this; I have actually used RB200X for background information before (OFF/Track fans: Toby and Subway are particularly good at the game!). I knew from the beginning that RB would be based off of color instead of arrows like PIU and DDR/ITG are. I also didn't want it to be super confusing, because there are eight colors to step on.

Actually, what I can do is this: I will give you a *quick* snippet of the novel. It's from a faux-Wikipedia article that the main character is reading, so it gives away no plot. Basically, it's not even part of the novel.

"Rhythm Buster 200X is an arcade rhythm game created by LaPostale Industries in 2000. The game has enjoyed considerable success in the United States, with some success abroad. The game is available both in arcade and at home format for many platforms, including LaPostale's own Z-Machine. LaPostale also licensed the game's music and sold the soundtrack; the game's first soundtrack went platinum in 2001. While other rhythm games have become popular, RB200X has enjoyed a continuous fan awe thanks to LaPostale's control over the system.
"The game itself is a dancing game; the screen features eight colors that scroll, officially: pink, red, orange, yellow, green, turquoise, blue, and purple (violet in international versions). These eight colors match the eight corresponding colors on the platform (arcade version) or the dance pad (home version). As the colors scroll, the player steps on the correct color. Critics have praised RB200X for its simplicity; although many criticized it for being dependent on time-based scoring, the Platinum release in 2009 included support for doubles freestyle, a popular event at tournaments for years.
"LaPostale has control over many of the game's tournaments; although small, local tournaments are held without sponsorship, national RB200X events must be sponsored by LaPostale. The most recent Nationals tournament was played in Dallas in 2009; in 2010 it will be traveling to Newark, New Jersey, in the NYC metropolitan area.
"LaPostale encourages team play. Teams can be made up of as many or as little people as needed. However, each member must play a set in each of LaPostale's events - single, double, freestyle, and doubles freestyle; therefore, the maximum members are six. Each member has a three letter handle that they use for machine scores but also has an individual LaPostale number that they use for online scores and tournament play. Often, team members will have their own individual name handles that they use as well, game names that are accepted by most, if not all, RB200X players. Some of the most popular teams include Angel Fall, Beauty Max, and Blue Impulse."

That's all you get, ya'll. For the rest of the actual story, you'll have to wait for the actual book to come out. I hope to have some images eventually. :D
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It's June. Hello, June! I haven't blogged yet for June or yet for this summer, so it's comforting to know I'm having a bit of fun here. I literally have sat in this chair ALL DAY. Nice to know that my butt likes it here.

To the sky high, toberu hazu )

Everyday I'm shufflin! )

So now I have moved from the chair. Have a good night, ya'll.
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A little less 'clock is ticking' today, although I really didn't get any writing done. Maybe, like, a sentence. Then again, I kept myself busy all day and it was a fantastic day, so I'm not complaining at all. :) I'm praying about it, which is my version of giving it to the universe. (MICKY!!! YOU BETTER DO SOMETHING!)

I had a very good dream the evening after my birthday (yes, when I ended up in my friend Kristene's bed near Herald Square -- YES, THAT HERALD SQUARE, ACROSS FROM *THE* MACY'S), a dream that I wish I could remember in its entirety. There was a group of people in that dream, a group I knew from high school, and they had gone on living their dreams and I hadn't, really. I hadn't stuck to the path I had made for myself when I was sixteen. Now, it's cool that I haven't, but I haven't kept the same spirit. Those people (fictional) came back to me in my dream, and I realized after I woke up that the leader was me, that kid who still exists in me and won't give up anything for the sake of others.

Where is your bright dream? What happens when we abandon our childish dreams, grow up? Even Barrie told us 'all children, except one, grow up.' Wynona Judd sang we 'put those dreams away, thinking that we'll find them come some rainy day.' But the past rarely leaves us alone. In Kanon, Yuuichi, the main character, has to remember who his friend Ayu is so that he can help her. He has to go back years and years to memories he's not sure he really remembers, memories of a school and a hill and a tree. He's a character who doesn't want to grow up, and he really does remind me of my boyfriend (Jesse notwithstanding!~~~). Dylan often doesn't want to make a big deal out of his birthday. He doesn't want to be old.

Let's make it an 'unbirthday,' then. Eternally six. Or seven. Or eleven. I wouldn't mind being eleven forever. But twenty four year olds don't wear rainbow colors in their hair, or color with crayons. They have kids and get married and put on suits and ties and go out and get sensible jobs. They don't wait on a startup they tell themselves will never happen, and they certainly don't pray for it to happen. They get practical.

Twenty four year olds don't move to New York City just because they can. That's reserved for eighteen year olds with guts...or twenty three year olds with everything to lose.

The sequel to THOIA directly deals with the loss of childhood love. But it doesn't deal with childhood dreams directly. While THOIA's sequel (which I'm not gonna talk about a lot, since it's not even pended out!) is based off of my younger childhood, this new idea is...different. It's something even I had long forgotten until the dream I had, a dream so vivid it grabbed me and won't let go.

Perhaps I'm just a silly artist. But I'm a silly artist who wants to animate a video, who wants to put together music, who wants to participate in Camp NaNoWriMo using an idea that she had back when she was sixteen (!) and never fully developed.

This idea might just kill me.

Today I went to Kmart (not knowing I'd go to Michael's later) and got a beach towel, more glow in the dark stars, and red duct tape. I took the duct tape home and put it on the rug in my room. Nine squares, eleven by eleven, thirty three by thirty three in total. I put little markings on some of the squares, because I was too damn lazy to make full arrows. It cost me five bucks in duct tape. But it's beautiful. And I'm going to keep using it. That red duct tape isn't going anywhere.

And if it doesn't work...

And if it don't work, make the real thing wipe it out!

What Scotty D. said.

February 2017



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