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Building a Better Story: Names

26 Aug

You and I, together.

Sometimes I advise, sometimes I don’t. This was one of the times I did.

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Question: How important is the name of a character?

Answer: It doesn’t matter and it DOES matter.

It doesn’t matter because, frankly, there are plenty of stories where names that mean complete gibberish are used for lead characters, and they work fine. I’m sure you can think of many examples, especially in the fantasy department.

On the other hand, it DOES matter because if you have 100,000 people read your book, and only 50 to 100 notice, “Oh my God, his name means _______! HOLY CHRIST-MUFFINS! THIS GUY’S A GENIUS! Brah, brah, brha…” then it was worth it. Especially if you run into one of those “elite” fans later on in your career and they’re like, “Hey, hey….I noticed it.” You guys will high-five the $#!* out of each other’s hands at that point.

So, I guess it depends on whether you want your hands to be hurting a lot.

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~D.

Building a Better Story: Characters

21 Aug

Poison and cheer!

Building a character and building a person are, relatively speaking, the same thing. Just go ahead and start designing the character, and then, at intervals throughout their creation, ask yourself, “Is this what a real person under these circumstances would do? Is this how they’d act? Would Iact this way in the same situation? Would anyone I know act this way? Is this the kind of character who would even have a ‘human’ reaction to these events?”

Doing the above gives us a sense of reality in relation to the character, regardless of whether they’re a man, a machine, an alien, or whatever. When we can observe the character realistically, no matter how strange they might be, they’ve been designed properly.

AN IMPORTANT NOTE: designing a character purely for interest is not interesting. We’re not interested characters because they’re interesting. We’re interested in characters because they themselves are interested in the world around them, thereby becoming “interesting.” We are interested in the interested.

Realistically Designed Characters: Han Solo, Andrew Detmer, Commissioner Gordon (BEFORE The Dark Knight Rises), Andrew “Ender” Wiggin, President Josiah Edward “Jed” Bartlet.

Characters Designed for Interest Alone: Jar Jar Binks, Mudflap and Skidds (from Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen), the Catalyst, Gurgi (until the later books that is).

In short, make people, not characters. And don’t force them to be interesting, because that’s not interesting.

~D.

The Word of the Day

19 Aug

Logs, just logs.

Complexity and nuances aren’t what make great stories, that’s depth’s job. And, as I’ve mentioned previously, depth can be simple, and it can also be natural.

Let’s examine these points individually in reverse, starting with that word “natural.” What does that mean? Well, in terms of stories and their telling, I’d say it means “anything originating without being engineered or contrived.” The natural parts of a story are the parts that come about as though they were entirely consequent of earlier events. Natural events appear real to the reader, and to the reader, the person, any person, things that are real tend to have depth, whether it’s made apparent right away or not. When things are natural, they’re real, and when they’re real they have depth, which is what readers love; not merely complexity, but depth, layers, levels.

Now, we also have this fascination writers have developed lately with creating “nuances” and “uniqueness” in their stories. This is becoming the new cliché, as such forced uniqueness and nuances lead to overly complex tales that nobody can keep up with. It’s fine for things to be original, and even unique, but these things again come from depth, which comes from how real the story is, which comes from how natural the story is. It all comes back to being natural, originating without being engineered or contrived.

And now we come up to complexity, which should never, in my opinion, be the goal of the writer. Intentionally making things complicated will always lead to contrivance. All of these things are connected and they, again, go back to how natural the story is.

So yeah, just keep everything natural and you’ll be fine. Have I used that word enough times for it to sink in?

 

~D.

My Top 12 Favorite “Game of Thrones” Moments

20 Jun

Forever, my father.

We all love it. We all hate it. We all want more. We all wish it would just end. We all got our friends to watch it, then reconsidered our decision to do so after the Red Wedding. We love it because it’s intelligent, because it’s real, but mostly because, unlike most stories told these days, it’s a game.

There are many players in the Game of Thrones. Once they enter the Game they have two options, as disclosed by Cersei Lannister early on: win or die. Opting out has been tried, but proven unsuccessful thus far. My advice? Don’t join unless you plan on being the victor.

Game of Thrones has been an exciting, powerful series thus far, filled with highs and lows, twists and turns, incredible battles and unforgettable characters. Today I’m going to talk to you about my favorite moments in the show hitherto. Note that I’m writing this prior to the release of Season 4. I may update it, I may not. For all we know the fourth chapter in the series could suck thanks to rising egos in the cast and crew (I’m not saying it will happen, I’m saying it could).

In case you’re in the middle of watching the show and are worried about spoilers, I’ve labeled each moment with their respective season and episode. That being said, let’s dive right in with…

Don't worry, you'll be possessing fucking wolves soon.

12. The Fall of Bran (Season One, Episode One)

If one could pinpoint the exact moment when Game of Thrones announced itself as “the show where anything can happen,” it would have to be Bran’s fall at the end of the first episode. I remember seeing him break his promise to Catelyn and thinking, “Good boy,” not at all aware of the potential negative ramifications of him doing so. Suddenly, as he drew closer to the tower I thought, “Wait, the music changed. Something important’s about to happen.” And then there they were: Jamie and Cersei  Lannister getting busy. I wasn’t all that shocked that there was incest going on, nor that it was incest between those two. However, I was shocked when Jamie grabbed Bran by the collar and uttered, “The things I do for love,” before tossing him the ground far below.

In most stories, especially in the case of TV shows, children are left undamaged. It’s sort of an unspoken rule regarding television, cinema, etc. Game of Thrones doesn’t play by conventional rules, it has its own.

"What is dead may never die."

11. The Dreadfort Assembly (Season Three, Episode Ten)

Let’s face it, as pissed as we all were at Theon for betraying Robb, cutting off his “favorite toy” was a bit much. I was among his many sympathizers during his time with Ramsay Snow, and even now I hope he’ll be okay in the end. My hope was strengthened after the most recent episode in the series, wherein his prized possession was sent to Balon Greyjoy, his father, as a threat.

Balon was asked to give up the lands he’d invaded recently in exchange for his son’s safety. He refused, calling the boy a disobedient “fool” who should’ve followed orders. Theon’s sister, Yara (called Asha in the books), doesn’t give a damn whether Theon made a mistake or not.

“I’m going to pick the fastest ship in our fleet,” she began. “I’m going to choose the fifty best killers on the Iron Islands. I’m going to sail up the Narrow Sea all the way to the Weeping Water. I’m going to march on the Dreadfort. I’m going to find my little brother…

…and I’m going to bring him home.”

"That was all I wanted."

10. A Golden Crown (Season One, Episode Six)

To me, this is the moment where Daenerys became a badass. Throughout the entire first season, up until this point at least, Viserys had been a real dick to his sister, and I mean a REAL dick. He’d beaten her, threatened to have the entire Dothraki Horde and their horses have sex with her, by force if necessary, and done all sorts of things that just left me thinking, “When does he die?” Seeing sweet justice exacted was more than appreciated, especially in such a gruesome form.

But the pouring of gold wasn’t what made this moment terrific. It was Daenerys saying, “He was no dragon. Fire cannot kill a dragon.” And then I understood how important she actually was, for she was the dragon Viserys claimed to be.

I miss him.

9. The King in the North (Season One, Episode Ten)

After a very significant event occurred (further on down the list), the Northerners were left without a Warden. And so, because of this, a new nation was formed, with a new king chosen by its people: Robb Stark. Robb is probably one of the top five best characters in the entire series, and his “badassery” skyrocketed after his new title was granted.

"Valar morghulis."

8. Everything with Jaqen H’ghar (Seasons One and Two)

I know this is kind of cheating, but, pardon my French, I really just don’t give a fuck. Jaqen H’ghar is a baller the like of which has not been equaled in the series thus far (I’m sorry, I think he’s cooler than Daenerys). His stealth and precision are unrivaled and his ability to change faces the way he does is literally perfect. I hope Arya trains under him next season. And by the way, nobody send me anything about it, but I think Jaqen and Syrio Forel are the same person, for various reasons which I’ll talk about another time.

Valar morghulis.

Spiders and Ladders

7. Everything with Varys and Baelish (Seasons One, Two and Three)

Okay, okay, this is the last time I’m cheating. But honestly, it’s so hard to choose the best of these back-and-forths between the two. The Spider and Little Finger always have the best discussions regarding the condition of Westeros. If I had to choose one that stood out, I might pick the “Chaos is a Ladder” speech that Baelish gives Varys. In every other discussion, they are equal to one another. In that one in particular, Baelish actually outwits Varys, a character I personally believed to be invulnerable.

All in all, these two always steal whatever scene they’re in, unless Tyrion’s in it. Speaking of which…

What is dead may never die.

6. Ned (Season One, Episode Nine)

I don’t think I have to say much. To some, he was a fool. To others, he was the last honorable man in Westeros. To me, he was both. He didn’t play the Game properly, but he was a good man nonetheless, a strong man, a courageous man. Too trusting though. He didn’t walk softly enough. He didn’t control his pieces the way Daenerys and Tywin did. He played it the way a soldier would, and, unfortunately, soldiers don’t win the Game.

Long live Ned Stark, the true King in the North.

"Halfman!"

5. Halfman (Season Two, Episode Nine)

Although he isn’t my favorite character (and I know he’s everyone else’s), Tyrion has had some of the most epic moments in the series, the Battle of Blackwater being full of them. One of his best scenes involves a speech wherein he tells his soldiers very simply and bluntly, “Those are brave men knocking at our door. Let’s go kill them.” Soon after, chants of his alias, “Halfman,” resound through King’s Landing, immortalizing Tyrion as a legend of Westeros.

500,000

4. Jamie’s Redemption (Season Three, Episode Five)

Okay, now I know most people still hate Jamie, but there are those out there who, like me, have forgiven him for his acts of evil in the past. After hearing what he did for the people of King’s Landing, how he saved five hundred thousand people from being burned alive, I was absolutely blown away, realizing that everything Jamie ever does, no matter how ruthless it may seem, is done because he truly believes it’s for the best.

It’s not just the story itself that makes this moment so incredible. Nikolaj Coster-Waldau should win an Emmy just for this scene on its own. He tells Jamie’s tale so beautifully and brings it to life in such a powerful way that I, a former die-hard Jamie HATER, was able to sympathize for the man I believed to be one of the main villains of the piece. Congratulations, sir.

Sorry Bran, but I have to give credit where credit is due. The Kingslayer is now a hero in my book.

Fucking dragons.

3. Birth of the Dragons (Season One, Episode Ten)

After Ned’s death I was certain there was nothing bigger they could throw at me this season. And then I remembered those eggs, and how our girl here can’t be burned, and although it didn’t surprise me all that much, the birth of the dragons was one of the most impressive bits in the series. It’s the first real appearance of magic in Game of Thrones, and it gave me hope that things would get better from here on out, that the bad guys were toast and that, soon enough, all would be well in George R.R. Martin’s world.

And then, of course, Robb Stark had to go and break his oath…

Fuck the Freys

2. The Red Wedding (You Know the One)

Okay, if you seriously don’t know what this is, stop reading, because you’re about to read what I think may be the biggest plot twist in a television series, EVER. On the night of a beautiful wedding merging the Tully and Frey houses, Lord Walder Frey executes what might be the most sickening, dastardly, gruesome, villainous betrayal ever put on a screen. I know that sounds like an overstatement, but if you’ve seen it, and you watched every episode prior and grew attached to—nay, to love the characters involved, then you probably agree. The Red Wedding is messed up beyond belief, with the loss of Robb, his wife, their unborn child, and Catelyn all in less than ten minutes.

But, as horrible as it was, you have to admit…

I BET she's going to die.

1. The Unsullied Liberation and Mhysa (Season Three, Episodes Four and Ten)

Yeah, remember what I said before? Well, I never said “I promise,” so I’m not worried about my choice here. I simply couldn’t decide between these two because, in a sea of depressing moments, these two are some of the more inspiring scenes in Game of Thrones.

The first is the liberation of the Unsullied, which me and my brother TOTALLY CALLED the week before (I take credit for calling it first). Daenerys makes what appears to be a stupid trade in order to acquire an army for the taking of Westeros. What ends up happening is a badass coup wherein all of Astapor’s slave master’s are killed and the army of Unsullied soldiers is liberated. When given the option to live as they choose, they all decide to serve the Stormborn Queen, and a great bit of symbolism occurs when she drops the whip that once controlled them and they march over it, their chains shattered.

The second is the ending of the recent season finale, which I honestly think is a beautiful thing. Hope is what I wanted out of the last episode, and hope is what I got. Even though I personally think Daenerys is going to die this coming season, she still makes me think that, even now, this story might have a happy ending.

One of the other great things about the Mhysa scene is how perfectly it symbolizes everything about the show. We have a hero who, because of the potential dangers of the world, is forced to surround herself with shields and pikes. Even when the friendly slaves arrive, there’s this tension about whether they can be trusted, whether anyone can be trusted. The look on Jorah’s face is what I’m talking about. He knows that even the kindest of fellows might stab someone like Daenerys right in the back. But Daenerys isn’t willing to let that sort of thought process go on. She knows that in order the end the clash between fear and love, she must take a leap of faith. And so, when she walks into the crowd, knowing fully well she might be beaten to death right then and there, she is testing whether all men are evil, whether all men must die. And, in the end, she proves that all men aren’t evil, and that there is still good to be found in the world.

That’s why I love Game of Thrones. That’s why you love Game of Thrones. That’s why we love Game of Thrones. Because it isn’t just about betrayal and blood and horror and death and hopelessness. It’s also about righteousness, truth, heroism, love, and freedom. And it will have a happy ending, one way or another.

"Build it and they will come."

And to those still mourning the Starks, just remember…

…what is dead may never die.

~D.

Game of @$%^ing Thrones

3 Jun

Fuck them. Fuck them all.

I usually censor my stuff because some of your are offended by swearing. If you are among those of whom I speak, please leave now. Thank you.

Okay, now that we’ve got that out of the way: FUCK THE MOTHER FUCKING, COCK SUCKING, ASS LICKING, INCEST INFESTED, DOG SHIT EATING, BUTT FUCKING, MURDEROUS, MONSTROUS, CUNT FUCKED UP BITCH LANNISTERS!

Okay, okay, okay…okay…

…okay…

…okay…

………THOSE MOTHER FUCKERS! I’LL RIP THEIR FUCKIGN SKULLS OUT AND USE THEM AS DRINKING CUPS!!!!

Okay, look, you already get the picture. I don’t need to write you a dissertation, a thesis, a long, detailed study of why I’m pissed right now. After all this build-up, all this amazing happiness and joy, joy we haven’t seen since in some time, mind you, THIS HAPPENS?! ARE YOU SHITTING ME?! Arya isn’t ever going to see her mother again? The Starks lost? Another direwolf is dead? They STABBED AN UNBORN CHILD TO DEATH?! WHAT?! WHY?!?!??!/!1/!111

I’m just….I’m just angry…..and disappointed. We can talk about it more later. Just…….just let me shower…..

 

And so he spoke, and so he spoke,

That lord of Castamere,

But now the rains weep o’er his hall,

with no one there to hear.

Yes, now the rains weep o’er his hall,

And not a soul to hear.

~D.

Gifted

19 May

The truth will makes you shit the bed.

So, I was supposed to write something yesterday, and I didn’t. What am I going to do to make up for it? Nothing. Why? I don’t owe you anything. What? You think that’s rude? Oh, come on. Would you rather I lied? Would you rather I wept at your feet begging the forgiveness of you and your divine brethren in Heaven Above? Would you rather I were obedient? Would you rather I were “timely?” A wizard is never late, nor is he early. Know it like you know your name. I ALWAYS get things done when I mean to. I never meant to write anything yesterday. That’s why I didn’t promise anything. That’s the key word: promise.

I only make promises when I mean to keep them. If I plan on breaking an agreement, I don’t make promises. Quite simple, hm? Ah, but now I AM here, so you want something. Notice I haven’t ASKED that. I know you want something, it needs no inquiry. So, what shall I give you? Ah, THAT is a question that needs answering.

Lucky.

How about I re-post that chapter again, just for good measure? No, you’ll get angry. You’re always so angry. What in Satan’s name’s the deal with you, hm? Having cramps? Swallowed a lozenge? Got cheated on? Come on, say it, what’s the deal?

Okay, you won’t talk. That’s fine. I’ll just figure out something for us to do. I KNOW! Let’s go check out Reddit. What’s on there right now? Okay, this is on the front. There, now isn’t that just perfect? It’s a marine and his bomb sweeping dog. He’s been given custody of her for a week. I think that’s awesome, don’t you? You do? Cool, we agree on something. And, even if you don’t think it’s awesome, it doesn’t matter. You can’t talk. You can’t say a word. You can’t deny it, you silent oaf. You have no defense, no retaliation  You’re a spectator. You’re a viewer. You have no say here. You can throw something in the comments box, but I’m in control there, too.

Here, I am God.

Where’s he going with this? Here, take a look at this. Now, that’s a young boy who wrote that. I’ve been sending messages to him, and him to me back. We’re in good standing with each other. However, once I’m there, that place you just were, I am no longer God. But I AM God. And see, here’s where your mind splits. I am God here, and you are not. But you ARE. Because somewhere, someplace, YOU TOO are God, just like the boy. He controls the blog, he controls THAT world, THAT universe. And somewhere else, you have your own universe that YOU forge, that YOU control. And because of this, WE ARE ALL GODS. And because of this, we are all gifted.

Networked

But none of that means anything. I lied to you. You should be upset, hurt, intolerant, angry with me. Why listen? Why believe my words? Because we trusted each other? I broke that trust. You have no reason to forgive me. You have no reason to come back to me, to love me.

But you do love me, because I’m God. And I love you, because you’re God.

“I am that I am.”

—Us

Pickles and Jam

3 May

Sometimes, we just have to sit for a bit, y'know?

Okay, guys. I know I joke around a lot on here, and I know you like that (yeah, I actually read the messages and emails and all that jazz), but I’m listening to Stairway to Heaven right now and, to be honest, it’s making me look back at everything I’ve accomplished. I’m smiling, the reason being that I’ve actually created quite the impact on a few people throughout the past few years that I’ve been doing this. It makes me proud to know I’ve helped a few people, even inspired some. You know, I might go so far as to say that you guys are—naw, I’ll save that one. That one’s important.

But, I do enjoy you all, and I know y’all enjoy me and my work and shtuff. So, the first thing I’m going to do is paste the fully edited version of the first chapter of Ledge on here for you. Now, you may think I’m being lazy, but the point isn’t the chapter, it’s the second thing I’m doing, which comes after the chapter.

So, here it goes. This is for you guys, really:

———————————————————————————————————————————–

CHAPTER ONE: CLINGING

There’s darkness, and then the curtains are drawn back. Time starts. His thumb moves. Click. That’s the sound of the gun’s hammer getting pulled back.

“Still won’t talk, Mr. Adams?”

That’s Greg. He isn’t holding the gun. Mac’s holding the gun. Mac’s seven feet tall, or something.

“Hit him again, Mac.”

Whack! That’s me getting punched in the face by a left hook. The gun’s in his right hand, not aimed at anything in particular yet.

“Come on, Adams. We don’t got all day. Just tell us where your friend is and we’ll let you go.”

My friend is Michael. I won’t tell Greg anything. I think my jaw’s broken anyway. It hurts like hell.

“Adams…”

We’re in a hotel room. It’s got a nice view overlooking Lake Oslana. That wasn’t the lake’s first name, but the owner of the hotel line decided it’d be a nice one to buy. I wonder what it was called originally.

“You know how easy this is. And it’s not like we’re gonna backstab you or anything. Just let us at him!”

I wish Greg would get it over with and have my ass capped already. My favorite suit’s already ruined, and there’s no way I’m exposing Michael—no way. I really hope he doesn’t come in and try to save me or anything.

AGH! GOOD GOD!

“That’s strike one. Next we put a bullet in your other thigh. Might be hard to walk around. Start talking.”

Jesus Christ, it hurts so much! Keep it together, Eddie! Be cool! You’ll make it out of this. Just need a plan.

Greg’s looking over at the other two men in the room, Mac not being one of them. He says something to them, but I can’t hear it very well. It HURTS!

“…and if we’re not quick enough, the Doctor might wonder what’s taking so long!”

The Doctor: a psychotic crime lord, currently working with the government (strange irony there). Whack! Another punch. The Doctor REALLY wants Michael dead, huh?

“We may have to waterboard it out of this guy,” says one of the other men. I don’t know his name, just some random goon with a gun. I hope Greg doesn’t agree.

“Get the rags,” he says. Now I’m done for. I won’t be able to hold out through that stuff. I hope Michael left the country. It’s not safe here in State 9 anymore, not with all that’s been happening lately.

A lot of time passes once the third man exits to get the rags. I give Greg an indifferent look. He shoots a glare. I give Mac the same look and he just snorts and walks off, dropping the gun on a sofa chair. He talks quietly with the last man in the room (just another goon).

“Why do you care so much?” Greg asks me. I become introspective and really analyze this before I answer, and then I shrug seeing as nothing I say will prove satisfactory. If I told him how Michael saved me, how he was different from the other you-know-whats, he wouldn’t understand. He’d just say I was a nutcase who needed his head examined.

After the course of two or three minutes (it felt like a lot more to me), the rags arrive with the third man. He tosses them to Mac, who catches them with ease.

“Did you bring the bottles too?” Greg asks.

“They’re just outside sir,” the man responds. “I’ll go get ‘em.”

The chair I’m strapped to is made of wood. It is laid across the floor, me now facing the ceiling. This is going to suck.

“You could always talk now,” Greg offers. I remain silent, like a good friend should, and the rags are placed over my face. I toss my head to the left, throwing the rags off. When a hard punch hits me in the—Lord, that hurts!—face I stopped turning. The rags go over me again. I think my nose is bleeding.

One of the water bottles is opening, I can hear it. Here it comes. Mac’s tilting it right now. Get out now, Michael. Get out before they find y—CRASH!

“What the—?!”

The sound of men being tossed about the room echoes through my ears. Bullets fly from Mac’s gun, but it explodes in his hand, causing him to shout in pain. The other two goons fire but are launched into the ceiling, their necks snapping. I can hear Greg being pinned against the wall. Mac is groaning and weeping on the floor as the rags are lifted off my face.

Michael.

“Get out of here!” I tell him. He unties the ropes that bind me and helps me into a sofa chair. There’s Greg, being held against the wall by Michael’s power.

“I couldn’t just leave you,” he tells me, before looking to Greg with an expressionless face. One of the guns of the dead goons soars toward his hand. He aims it at the leader of the group, now begging for mercy.

“To harm an ally of mine is to hang oneself,” the angel says. Then a red mark appears between the eyes of Greg and blood trickles down from it until it reaches his lips. The body falls to the floor, lifeless. Michael looks back at me.

“Are you all right, Edward?”

“Yeah,” I lie, “I’m dandy. You showed up just in time. Although I still think you need to get the hell out of Dodge.”

He puts his hand on my shoulder and says, “We are getting out, not I.”

“I have to see Sally first.”

Sally’s my girlfriend. She’s—she’s beautiful. It’s a long story. I haven’t quite decided whether I’ll marry her yet. We’ve been with each other quite a while now.

“No time,” Michael tells me, causing me further worry. “Those were easy hunters. If they send Lucifer—.”

“I can’t just leave her. They’ll kill her!”

I’m standing now, but my leg hurts too much. I’m trembling as I fall back into the chair. Michael holds a hand to where the bullet is and slowly—YAGH—levitates it out of me. I’m not bleeding too badly. Okay, maybe I AM bleeding too badly. But he’s already ripping a bed sheet apart and wrapping a piece of it around the wound.

“That should stop the bleeding. Raphael will be able to heal you later.”

“Michael, I can’t leave her.”

His face, though without expression, holds weight behind it like you couldn’t imagine. His eyes waver and glow. And then, he understands.

“I will get you to safety first. The others are downstairs with a car. I’ll let them get you out of here, then I’ll get the girl.”

I’m thinking of disagreeing, thinking of telling him I have to be there when it happens. But that’d be foolish right now. I need healing, and Raphael’s always been the quickest at that.

“All right, fine. Let’s go.”

He nods. We depart. Mac looked dead last I checked.

This world has changed since the war. I can only hope that doing what I’m doing will help save it from its own self-destruction. Although, to be honest, when I look outside at the covert dystopia that has come, I can’t help but lose hope entirely.

We’re hanging on a ledge right now. I really hope Man’s fingers don’t get any more tired than they already are.

———————————————————————————————————————————–

Before I go, I want to tell you a true story about the power of art. There was once this girl sitting in a car on a city bridge. It was night, and not very many cars were passing by at the time. She was crying, weeping actually, because right then, right there, in that moment, she intended, completely and utterly, to drive over the edge of the bridge into the water below. Sweat trickled down her neck and shivers traveled up her spine. Now, this sort of thing happens all the time, and so, naturally, she could’ve just pressed down on the gas and gotten it over with. In most cases, this would’ve been so.

So then there was this nightclub. A DJ (I won’t say who, but suffice to say he’s a pretty big deal in the clubbing world—and a family friend) was playing some killer tracks, and everyone was going wild. The room was electric, truly. You could feel the life pulsating through it, like a heartbeat. Then, after the DJ’s work was done and he was turning in for the night, someone tried to reach him backstage. At first, security tried to shove the person away, but the DJ approved their passage, for they did not seem to be some crazy, drunk fan out seeking autographs or something “intimate.” His guess was right, for it was then that the person told him of the miracle that had been bestowed upon them.

They had just recently gone through some of the toughest trials life had ever thrown their way. In fact, these trials were so punishing and cruel, that the person had been driven to the point where death seemed like the only option. And then, literally seconds before the gas pedal was pressed down and a body was made soulless, a song came on the radio, a song called It’s Gonna Be Okay. It was one of the DJ’s best songs.

Art saved her life that night.

To all my fans who are artists: any time you think maybe your life would be more useful somewhere else, doing what society has told you is “productive,” remember that you’re doing something that actually saves lives. If that ain’t productive—ah, screw that, it’s productive, know it like you know your name. We need more of you out there, because even if you’re never thanked for it, know that you’re doing something badass just by being an artist.

So yeah, that’s why I put random pictures at the top of all my articles. Now, finish the night with this video:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nwAYpLVyeFU

Love,

D.

Laugh.