Take A Pike

In the early 2000’s a yellow-paged book came into my possession. “The Last Vampire” by Christopher Pike slipped itself over the backseat of a traveling bus. I retrieved the soft cover novel and started reading about a five-thousand year old vampire, called Sita. In a matter of days the story came to an end. I passed the book back over the seat and waited for the next one to come through. 51WS2P2XR2L

Jackie, my dealer, supplied the novels to several people in class. A small group that used the books as inspiration for their own novels. We traded composition books full of vampires that lived in Egypt during a time before pharaohs, similar to Sita’s background. She lived in India where an evil spirit inhabited her dead friend and started the vampire lineage.

My version mirrored this heritage as the protagonist summons a spirit to revive her dead friend. This started the lineage of vampires to encroach the human world but without the promise of eternal life. A vampire would live the expected lifespan of a human but with superhuman powers, like telekinesis. I gave these stories to friends that gave them back with confused looks.

“If they don’t live forever then how are they still alive?” they asked, flipping to the front page of  my story. I saw that it began in modern day times with the same character that lived a thousand years ago. Somehow this plot-hole never occurred to me. I needed to revise the story.

I changed my vampires to infinite creatures of the night in exchange for their telekinesis. This allowed my protagonist to flourish with also a goal in mind. She needed to keep her life eternal while recovering her superpowers. I found something new and interesting about the story that kept me writing and reading stories.

Christopher Pike continued to inspire me as his characters often dealt with deadly matters. In the “Chain Letter” series, a group of friends submitted themselves to a mysterious contract that forced them to commit embarrassing acts in exchange for the send’s silence. This deal stretched over the length of three novels. I finished the last one in my dad’s car while on the way to high school.51YXS2N1PSL

At this point all my friends found different clicks of people to engage with. I ventured into the art department where I found the terror of commitment. Turning in a disfigured still-life embarrassed me more than an incomplete one. I turned in sketches of men with only half a face or two-legged elephants. Although earning a passing-grade they left me feeling ashamed of my inability to complete things, similar to Pike’s characters.

The unknown meant the unwillingness to find out the mysteries ahead. I needed to charge ahead through the gray between contoured lines and blank paper. I needed to stop fear with perseverance. This allotted my imagination to find a balance between the real and the unreal as projects completed themselves. Because the thing about art is that it only exists as it is made.

I still struggle with the ability to sometimes follow a professor’s instructions to finish a story. Sometimes my projects amount to nothing except fine detail and little character growth. These things matter little and a lot. Art needs time to grow , and I’m willing to make more deals with myself and others, in order to see that happen. After all, writers need readers as much as I want the next vampire installment from Christopher Pike.

 

The Aftertaste of a Dream

 

Four years ago I got rejected from art school in New York City. The experience left me stranded in the middle of Florida with two best friends. We gathered our strength together in order to help one another. A flock of hands lifted one us out of a broken heart and into the art studio, where they learned to give into their emotions with by studying them. A flock of hands pulled one of us away from a small town, where everyone believed that a medical degree led to happiness, and into the vibrant city of Orlando. Each of them found a way to believe in themselves again while I wondered where to start.img-thing.jpeg

I switched majors, from art to writing, but still felt aimless. New York City no longer appealed to me since Orlando became my home. Its craft coffee shops, literary clubs, and hipster bars resonated with my need for culture. I no longer felt the craving to taste other cities, but I still craved a dream.

One of my friends went on to graduate and moved to a different state. The other one got married and continues to study art at the same university that I attend. We still help one another get through the hard times. Although, not all hard times call for the attendance of friends. For example, I felt the bitter taste of rejection the other night and thought of New York City. After several seconds it dissolved into something sweet. My teeth grinded against one another in anticipation for the next sample of rejection. I needed to taste something like it again. Maybe I’ll go to grad school. Maybe I’ll intern at a radio station. Either way I need a dream again.

My Voice

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Essay and Photo by BoyKitsch

I’m trying to find my voice in the bright green trees of Florida. It loves to swing off  one branch and onto another during the day. The woods sigh with delight because no one ever pays attention to them. At least not the neighborhood people.

They sit beside television sets inside of their apartments. I look up into open windows and find blue faces. A cold sensation spirals up my spine. The image reminds me of the curly-haired-boy who once watched Netflix for four hours in my apartment. He felt happy.

A blue light disappears from one of the windows, so I turn back to the trees. My voice rustles the leaves as it climbs higher. The ascension seems easy but that’s because I’m standing outside of the action. I know that when my voice returns it will tell me all about the trouble it got into.

It will tell me about the thug squirrels that hid inside a tree hole. They threatened to kill it if my voice wouldn’t give them a song. My voice shivered beneath sharp claws before  spitting out a rhyme that lifted up greedy paws and escaping to the branches below.

“Sometimes danger happens but that’s how we learn about the world around us,” I will tell it. It’ll stomp and pout around the trees because I never taught my voice patience. When it stops I’ll say, “But most people would rather live through the danger than watch someone else live through it.” It won’t understand and go back into the trees while I listen to the distant laugh of an informercial somewhere above.

 

 

A Completed Story

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I started calling myself a writer this year. It happened after completing a short story. The two paragraphs explained how an alcoholic journalist could reconcile his addiction with art. Instead of drinking to forget about the past he painted it. This led him to a community where people use art to make political statements. In the end, he uses them to become mayor of a small town in Orlando.

This story made me feel good, like it healed a wound or cooled a burn inside. My fingers stopped twitching throughout the day. A story laid behind them now. They could carry on with their daily tasks while I thought up new ideas. A planet called California that harbored an evil stepmother. Mermaids that ate pizza. These things I looked forwards to the same way a runner looks forward to their next marathon. I am a writer.

The Pie Hole

IMG_2308I’m sitting in a Pie Shop with a cup of coffee, a time of the day when all my best ideas are sleeping. They curl against the corners of my mind like cats do in their favorite parts of the home. Some have chosen the bedroom where I store my most intimate memories.

One of them is of an ex-boyfriend that turned on the radio before taking a shower. He called me in, took my hand, and we danced. I remember my naked tummy wiggling against his before spinning around. It was one of the most joyful experiences I’ve ever had with a lover.

I’ve kept that moment underneath the bed in a shoebox. Next to it a sleeping cat lies. If I woke it then maybe a story about two boys that snuck around town in search of places to kiss would unravel. Some of the strands have sewn themselves into Closet Case posts. However, finding a new purpose for this memory will take work.

I’m a writer that’s in their infancy stage. Moments like this, coffee and pie, is the time that I like to reflect on my aspirations. They are lying all over the place but part of finding them is by looking back on old times. I think that what I have to gain this time from reflecting is that I love writing love stories.

Two people that are solely themselves when apart, but combine to make an ultimate personality. That’s what I like to read about.

Until next time,

BoyKitsch

“The Brief Life of BoyKitsch”

There’s something tough about writing a piece at home vs writing a piece not at home. Maybe it’s the condition of being alone. When there’s people around I find my thoughts navigating about the cafe, the park, people’s heads, and into the clouds where there’s a plethora of ideas. At home there’s just the roof. 


 

 

This week I’m reading “The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao” by Junot Diaz for a school discussion. Half way into the book and I find myself feeling for the character. I’m feeling pain, love, motivation, for the protagonist because I want him to live outside his state of mind. Depression is a condition that he has allowed himself to be put in. Then again there are so many variables in the story that allow to believe otherwise. 

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When I think of the “conditions” that have put myself here today there are feelings similar to that of which I feel for Oscar. It’s pains me to realize that maybe I give myself too much alone-time. Compared to my friends I would consider myself a hermit. Something I love about the story around me though is that I interact with imagination everyday. 

His hand crept up and down the bookshelf in search of the right inspiration. Cover after cover he heard the echoes of warriors, villains, and romantic beasts. However, after much consideration he allowed his attention to be directed to another story, the one on his computer waiting to be written. 

Writing is something I love to do. The motivation I have for writing though comes from all other outlets. For Oscar his inspiration comes from Sci-FI, games, amongst other nerdy things. Some of mine come from fashion, pop music, philosophy, and stories of pioneers. So while Oscar and I may be a little different or a little the same, reading the story has pushed me to take my life and read about it some more. So with that said I’ll be finishing my New York Story sometime next week. 

 

Stepping Out Part Two- The Trying Beginning

An artist, to me, is someone that desires to create no matter the expense both physically and mentally. Why? Because it feels good to having created something that didn’t exist before. It feels like magic. Somewhere along the way though the magic is tainted.

I remember being in school drawing when a stranger would ask to look at my work in progress. I’d politely say no. Their reaction was to be offended when really I was offended. I didn’t ask to look at their math equations. I didn”t ask to listen to their rehearsal. Drawing is something I did because I loved doing it. Not because I wanted to share it, at least not until it felt completed

Somehow and somewhere along the way people thought that art was only worth doing if it got the creator famous. I never wanted to be famous for my artwork. I solely wanted to take the world apart so I could put it back together again. In the end it took me apart. I remember the frustration to want to create something wonderful but I didn’t see the point. I had applied to schools in New York and didn’t get in. My quest seemed over so I decided to switch majors. I became a Creative Writing major for half a year. In the end though I still felt empty because this wasn’t the place I wanted to be.


When I first dropped out of college I just laid in bed all the days. I often stared up at the ceiling feeling empty. The world was meaningless. The past three years had amounted to nothing. I did the art. I tried the writing. It seemed that the simple truth was that I wasn’t a creator. I didn’t want to be famous and I didn’t feel good creating anymore.

So I watched TV. Lots and lots of TV. My favorite show though was Glee. I watched as many episodes I could until I felt  inspired. Music always inspires me but what it works better in a story line. At this point, to me, I was a loser that wanted to feel special. I watched clip after clip until suddenly I remembered something. I had always wanted to learn to sing and dance. The past was the past so why not try something new?

My first dance class was Aerial Dancing. It took place in a studio half way across town, a distance that required me to wake up at six in the morning. I felt elated that morning while driving through the misty fog. It seemed that the rain had fallen and left clouds everywhere, new dreams.

When I arrived there was a woman unlocking the door. She had with her a girl of about ten that was wearing a tutu.  They both welcomed me inside with warm smiles. The dance studio was small with polished wood floors, tumble matts, mirrors, and silk ropes hanging from the ceiling. Immediately, the little girl started climbing before anyone else arrived. Meanwhile, the woman and I began to get acquainted. I told her this was my first Aerial class, first dance class in general. She was very excited and impressed. I felt embarrassed but she went on to say that people usually get intimidated by new things, especially adults.

That’s when everyone else began to file in. Small girls. A tall boy and several teenagers. All of them expressed that they had been dancing for years. In fact they had just been in a show! Suddenly, I felt nervous and intimidated. I began to wonder if I had made a mistake…(To Be Continued…)