Archive for the ‘Discipline’ Tag

I Write, Therefore I Am?

Monday, April 8th, 2013

I’ve always fancied myself a writer. At a shade over 30, living in the technological age, I’ve had the chance to write in various mediums. I’ve served as a senior writer and editor on multiple websites. I’ve blogged on and off for a decade. I’ve self published numerous zines. I’ve published some articles. I’ve begun (but never finished) multiple novellas and short stories…

But I’m not a writer, really… at least, not yet. In order to be a writer, like a REAL WRITER, I need some discipline, some motivation, and something real to say.

So, maybe I need to shit or get off the pot, right? I’ve got random stories from work in the prison system. I’ve got random stories from promoting and attending hundreds of concerts. I’ve got random stories from being a dad…

But, where is my direction? Do I finish that zombie novel/novella that I began years ago or is that genre just too damn inundated now? I’ve flirted with storyboarding that and having a friend draw it up as a graphic novel, which feels more appropriate for that story. Do I actually get working on the research for the book project that I’ve been talking about with a Jersey punk scene friend for over a year? I’m not sure why, but that’s not inspiring to me at the moment (though I am certain that we will write that book, as it needs to be written). So, which project is right for me now?

I ask this question, but I know the answer. It’s my Dubliners, my Joycian short story collection. There are several half written stories and numerous frameworks that are all based on some twisted notion of the American dream. The star crossed lover from a poor neighborhood in Wilkes Barre, the former civil servant pinched in a child pornography sting, the Vegan straight edge girl from the city who secretly yearns to be a high class prostitute, the transgender inmate who rots in a cell for the horrific decisions he (or she) made before landing there… these are not happy stories, but they are all based on something real. These stories are where I’m supposed to go from here.

Now the question becomes, will I actually work my strange compendium into existence? Will I find ways to find time for this work into my upcoming coursework, the blogs I write, and the other things that sidetrack me?

Lenten Fast: Soda and Energy Drinks

Friday, March 29th, 2013

For the first time I can remember, I gave something up for Lent. I did so for selfish reasons, not at all about spiritual discipline… but I did learn some discipline AND a thing or two about Lent. Here’s a short blog about the experience.

First, the why…

Why did I give up soda and energy drinks for Lent? The answer is Diet Coke. I have a Diet Coke addiction, which I supplemented pretty regularly with Monster Rehab and Sugar Free Vegas Fuel. I had no intention on cutting out all caffeine, but I knew I needed to focus my caffeine intake on healthier means, namely coffee and tea.

Second, how has it gone?

It’s gone well. I drank Diet Coke once, but it was on an allowable day (Sundays during the Lenten season are considered feast days, something I learned during this process). This is truly a success, because it was not on the temptations that I caved, but rather, I just felt like having one on a day where I was allowed, so I did. My willpower has remained strong, even on days where I REALLY CRAVED Diet Coke.

So, now, let’s look at where I go from here…

I fully intend to partake in a Diet Coke on Sunday, part of my celebration of Easter I guess. But, I don’t want to go back to the old habit, so I have decided that Diet Coke is reserved for the weekends and the energy drinks are as good as gone, outside of possibly for a long road trip or something similar.

And on the spiritual side of things…

I didn’t use this as an exercise in spiritual discipline, but that doesn’t mean I didn’t learn anything about my faith or my ability to be spiritually disciplined. If I can give up something that I was consuming in mass quantity daily, than just MAYBE I can apply that to my spiritual journey. Why can’t I use this discipline to focus on my devotional time, my time reading the Bible, and my time reading other works about faith and life? Guess the answer is in the question… right?