“Where I’m From, We Don’t Look Like Models.”

I watched a playlist of new music videos on YouTube and came across Anitta’s “Girl From Rio.” I like the concept that there’s a big difference between her Rio as a local and the Rio see through a tourist’s eyes or movie lens. It’s easy to relate to that idea while living in a major tourist city like Orlando. The Orlando I live in is very different from the theme park industry we’re most known for.

Writing Prompt: In your stories setting what are somethings that only locals really know about?

The Ladies of Country

I introduced a new character, in Shadow-Blessed Ep. 13, named Storm Ryder. His music taste inspires the playlist below. He is going to be the protagonist of his own spin-off. While Milo and his growing fam will show more of the magical community, I plan to explore how the mundane world’s reaction to learning about the supernatural in Storm’s story. If any of you are interested, I’ll be publishing Storm’s story as part of Amazon’s upcoming Kindle Vella program. It will be a publishing platform for serialized short stories between 600-5000 words in length from what I’ve read. (In the ballpark of what I’m already doing with Shadow-Blessed.) Unlike Shadow-Blessed, Kindle Vella stories won’t be completely free. According to the email they sent to existing KDP authors, the first three episodes will be free for users to get a sense of the story, and then there will be a payment system in place for updates past those initial episodes. They haven’t released a specific launch date yet for the new storytelling platform, but I’ll be sure to keep y’all updated about when the stories go live. Until then, I hope you enjoy this playlist inspired by Storm Ryder.

It’s Okay Not to Want Babies Y’all

Hey Fans, Friends, and Fellows,

So I’ve known for most of my life that I don’t want children. So often, when I express this opinion, people don’t want to accept it. They always feel the need to say, “You’ll feel different when it is your kids,” or “But what if your soulmate wants kids?” And responses are “No, I won’t because I won’t be having kids” and “If he wants kids, then he isn’t my soulmate.” When I found this video, I couldn’t help laughing. If you’re like me and you don’t want kids, I hope you’ll get the same enjoyment out of it. If you’re not like me and children are definitely part of your life plan, that’s awesome for you! My life choices are in no way an attack on your life choices.

Writing Prompt: Write a character who holds a desire that goes against the societal norm. What conflict does this bring into their life?

The Time’s Always Right

“The time’s always right to fix what’s wrong.” I really love the lyric from half·alive’s song “What’s Wrong.” From a writing perspective, I’d apply that idea to editing. In life, there’s a myriad of situations that this line could connect to for us. Maybe you have a long overdue apology to give or an assignment that you put off too long. It’s better late than never in a lot of situations.

Writing Prompt: Write a scene about a character who has put off fixing something for too long.

Overworked Writer Life

Hey Fans, Friends, and Fellows,

I found this song “No Rest” by Vicetone that I connected to right away. It uses the phrase “ain’t no rest for the wicked,” which reminded me of Cage the Elephant’s song named for that same phrase. I thought I’d share the songs here. Though they have that lyric in common, they’re very different songs. I’m sure a lot of people can relate one if not both songs. I hope that you all enjoy them as much as I do.

Fellow Writers: Write a piece inspired by the phrase “no rest for the wicked.” Whether you include the phrase in the writing or not see where it takes you.

The Symbols Were Not Ours

I just found this video of “I Know It Hurts” by Paul Cardall & Tyler Glenn. As my Songs for the Shadows playlist may have tipped you off, Tyler Glenn is one of my favorite artists, with or without the band Neon Trees. I’m actually a little surprised I didn’t find this song sooner. It is part of a larger project that I’m still checking out, but I couldn’t wait to post about this song. Religion comes up a lot in the lyrics Tyler Glenn sings, particularly feeling disconnected from religion or a changing relationship with faith. These lyrics resonate with me. “But the symbols were not ours.” really hit me in this song. I can find so much feeling in many religions’ symbols, but very few of those symbols feel like they are mine. I hope y’all enjoy the song and can find some inspiration in it.