Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Hello September

Fall is slowly approaching, which means a few things: pumpkin everything, sweaters, scarves, boots, my favorite layered looks, more hot cocoa, a bit of rain (which I just got kicked off of my apartment patio by some rain), a bit of wind, a lot of leaves everywhere and NaNoWriMo.

The last one feels like it's fast approaching, actually, which is a scary thing if you're a writer looking to participate.

So I've decided to do a bit of training.

September: 15k words
October: 25k words
November, the big kahuna: 50k words.

Now that means, since it's September 1, I need to get this writing party started--which I plan to do even more so than I have lately. Seriously, if you all knew just how much I've been writing already... I wish I could share it with you all. Maybe a literary magazine or two will finally pick up some of my pieces (still waiting to hear something back), and then we'll know. My muse is at an all-time high. I even wrote a few songs recently which I haven't done in quite some time. I'm hoping this muse stays for a while.

On top of that, we spent some time the other day in the city, and we're about to go back tonight for dinner with old high school friends of mine that are in town. Honestly, props go to Tripp for being willing to even go anywhere after work tonight--especially downtown. I hope he knows how much I love and appreciate him.

So before I get ready for that, I'm going to write. Wish me luck!

Wednesday, August 26, 2015


I hate not writing pieces for this blog anymore, because it feels like I struggle to know just what to say about my life anymore. I try to keep up with all of you lovely bloggers, but even that gets rough sometimes.

Currently, I'm at Starbucks being a cliche and trying to not get angry at the fact that there are four men nearby smoking--too close to the entrance of the shop, I swear--and the smoke is wafting up my nostrils while I try to sip a chai tea latte and write. It shouldn't be this hard to relax.

But I did find a cool artist on Soundcloud that does a lot of relaxation music. Anyway, if you want to find out more about my more professional updates, you can always keep up with http://dearjenna.com/category/posts/ where I make all of my posts about whatever professional things I think might interest others in my field--it is my website after all. I'm trying to be a good web slinger and update the damn thing.

As for where I am right now, we've had a whirlwind of a month. If you follow me on Instagram--which many do--you'll discover that we took that trip to Mt. Rainier that I blogged about last week, as well as we had a puppy and had to give back a puppy. I miss my little Lucy, but it just wasn't the right time. Not gonna lie, I put on a brave face, but that hurt. But it's been about a week or more now since that happened (I don't know, my days blend together), so things are better.

But enough about me. How are you?

Thursday, August 13, 2015

Mount Rainier Adventures

Just as reported, today Tripp and I made it to Mount Rainier, and it was a beautiful hike (even if he did drag me up a narrow path that made me a bit nervous and more out of breath than I expected, haha).


We made a little friend that we named Henry.

He looks so good, even if I look exactly like someone who has been hiking all day. I guess not everyone can pop out of the womb looking as fresh as he.

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Just a feeling, I guess.

Sometimes, all you really want to do is make your dreams come true. No, I'm not about to start singing Hilary Duff (circa 2003) covers, but when you're an adult, it is hard to make what you want to happen happen.

You think, as a kid, that you'll have all this freedom and power as an adult. But when you grow up, you can sometimes feel just as helpless as you were before. Sure, I can marathon Netflix shows while I cook dinner in my underwear and not have to worry about some lame parent ruining my good time, or making me change the TV to something they want, or--Heaven forbid--make me put on pants. But I still have taxes, bills, student loans, a job. All of these things can become obstacles if you let them.

I'm trying to learn how not to let them be obstacles.

So, the other day, I came with an idea for a literary magazine. (Don't freak out, nothing is set in stone, yet.) But I do need support for this one. Because if I do this, I'll be doing this mostly alone until I get a team behind me. I have one friend willing to give input, at least, for now. But right now she's the only one, and I'm not set in letting her do more than her poor heart can handle right now, anyway. And should this go according to plan, I'll also officially be an editor again, on my own terms, if this happens. The crazy thing about the internet is if you setup a web presence, you can say you're anything. But I've been submitting my own work out there into the literary ether for months now, and I know how hard it can be for others.

I'm not using this to put my own work up and say I'm published. I'll likely never post anything there. Because this isn't about me, it's about others. It's about the written word. These are way more important things than my pride.

Anyway, it's Art in Transit. It's for those who find their muse (fiction and nonfiction prose, or poetry) while on the move--on buses, trains, road trips and living life. It's an online literary magazine. You can find the firsts of it here: @ARTin_transit

Please follow that Twitter account, and tell your friends. When the website launches, it will be announced there. Tell your friends of literary minds that they should totally get in on this action--get in on the ground floor. This is about publishing everyone's work online and expanding what literary art really means for the millions of different voices and styles out there. I guess I should have figured that an artsy gal like me would end up here, eventually.

In other news, I was granted a vacation week, and I've been spending it with Tripp. We've not done a lot of exciting, "adventurous" things yet, but we have done a lot of important things. For one, this apartment no longer looks like a pig sty (hello, I am a pig).

Tomorrow, we are going to Mount Rainier, because we have yet to do that (man, life sure takes up a lot of bandwidth), and I really can't wait for that. I plan on bringing my ol' rusty camera to take some photos while we're there. We're leaving around 11 a.m. to go.

Vacations are a great way to start up new projects and go on adventures, but don't forget to do that even on just your off days. Enjoy life, friends.

Friday, July 17, 2015

The Decemberists

I saw The Decemberists tonight. I also ate a tasty vegetarian, portabello burger with buffalo sauce from a place I've been meaning to try (their food truck was parked in the park) and sipped wine before the show.

(I'm not exactly vegetarian, but I love food in general so I'm willing to try all sorts.)

The Decemberists were perfect. I didn't want the night to end, even though my feet were sore from all the dancing and jumping and standing.

Edit: I hadn’t quite found the words I needed to express my gratitude to The Decemberists for their show at Marymoor Park last night, July 16, when I first made up this post. It’s something that will stick with me for a while. Colin walking out with his glass of wine and suit, looking nonchalantly at the crowd, then slowly grabbing his guitar and singing “The Singer Addresses His Audience”--the perfect kind of opening to any show. The song begins with, “We know, we know, we belong to ya.”

People crowded the stage as the rest of The Decemberists appeared on stage, encouraged by joyous applause and hollers. They finished out the song and welcomed us. It felt like coming home.

The Decemberists probably did every song I could have ever wanted and/or needed them to play. Even some of their really fun songs that I just wanted to dance to. Probably the first time they got me and made me tear up through a song was “The Engine Driver,” whose lyrics are beautiful enough on their own:

“And I am a writer, writer of fictions
I am the heart that you call home
And I’ve written pages upon pages
Trying to rid you from my bones”

Even now I can’t read those words without getting chills. I can’t say I was able to hold it together well. And that was still early on in the show.

We sipped wine, we watched Colin sip wine and we sang our hearts out to every note and word we knew. Every moment that had etched its way into our memories. “Make You Better” was next on the list of songs that pulled me apart, but not nearly as bad.

Then there were the songs that just blew me away live like “Wanting Comes in Waves/Repaid.” Hearing Nora O'Connor belt out the words to “Repaid” in that song was everything I could have hoped for and more. They broke it down and got soulful for us. And at the end of the night, when they did the “Mariner’s Revenge Song” we were instructed to scream bloody murder as a huge cardboard whale ate the band. They conducted us through parts of the songs. They made us a part of the show.

And now all I really want is to be back there in that summer breeze, hanging in the low 70s, under the night sky with hundreds others staring up at these people who have given us so much for so long. I want to see the stage be lit up in brilliant color. I want Colin to say, “Maybe this will linger with you later,” and conduct us all in a chorus of, “Hear all the bombs fade away,” as they finish the last 1.5 minutes of “Sons and Daughters.” I want to sing it over and over again in front of that stage with them as we did that night, nearing 2 minutes of echoed love. I don’t want the melody to end. I don’t want to give my feet a break. I just want to remember those words and this moment forever. Please, dear God, just take me back.