Musings

Life, the universe, and mythological creature conspiracy theories of a mermaid kind

If you’re a mermaid naysayer, let me first remind you that it’s near easy to prove something exists; it’s near impossible to prove it doesn’t.

So, a couple years ago I guestblogged elsewhere about how I was cursed by mermaids, and now I’m sharing it here with you. Without further ado, here’s the post where we all squeal and gush about mermaids:

Or, how I almost discovered the secret of the mermaids like three times over

That Time I Could Have Been a Mermaid, but Slept Instead

I remember vividly when my next-door neighbor told me about the mermaids. How she ran away to the town park (because don’t all adventures start with a child running away from their dull life?). How at precisely midnight the playground transformed into a lake. How a mermaid swam to the surface and promised we could be transformed into mermaids at the stroke of midnight (when all magic happens) if we all run away there together.

Luckily or unluckily for us, we never woke up at midnight to actually run away and turn into mermaids. For weeks we would see each other the next morning and say, “Dang it! I slept through our chance.” “Oh it’s okay, I did too. We’ll wake up tonight.” “Yes tonight.” And every night the Sandman won, and the mermaids never stood a chance.

The life I might have lived, right? Apparently I wasn’t dedicated enough to lose my beauty sleep. Either that or I didn’t quite believe in magic yet, darnit!

That’s when the curse began.

That Time I Hardcore Prepared to Grow Fins for My 13th Birthday

After watching Disney’s The 13th Year (affiliate link to watch on Amazon Prime video), I was ready to find out I was adopted/rescued from a fishing boat and actually had biological mermaid-parents. Never mind that my parents live nowhere near the ocean – my mermaid parents were probably in that magical lake at the playground. Realistically, my adoptive parents probably rescued me from the tire swing, not a fishing boat.

Ever the curious hopeful, I of course tested it out – just to make sure I’d know if I had mermaid heritage. I couldn’t hold my breath much more than a minute. I couldn’t swim hardly at all, let alone with my legs together – pretending they’re bound by a tail like any proper mermaid of course. And I sure wasn’t able to stick to walls, let alone climb them like the 12-year-old in the movie.

My 13th birthday came and went with no fins or mer-parents to show for it.

That Time I Grew Up but Still Found Definitive Proof that Mermaids Exist

Animal Planet’s mermaid mockumentary – they say “mock” instead of “doc” because it’s not proven, but it’s obviously some government regulation going on there. The show had footage about how mermaids exist and have been found the world over, but the government keeps covering it up. The show directed to a website with even more proof, but lo and behold, of course all you find is a page that says the website has been taken down by – you guessed it – the government.

I’m not much for conspiracy theories, but ya’ll, if you’re going to hop on a conspiracy theory bandwagon, can we all agree that this is *the* one? 🙂

Perfectly sensible people say this is just fun pretend – create a movie and say the government is keeping the info hush-hush, then have a webpage where the movie creators post legit-looking government info saying the website is taken down.

But who ever wanted to be a sensible person anyhow?

I’m going to blame either the naysayers or the government for my lack of ability to purchase this in DVD format anywhere. Darn Discovery Channel, get with the “I want to own this” program! But until then, I at least can spread the word about this fantastical development.

That Time Mermaids were Stolen From My Novel:

The final most-recent proof that mermaids will forever just barely elude me is this:

The Little Mermaid (affiliate link) came to theaters, but not the Little Mermaid you know and love. It’s the Little Mermaid you know and love more.

A *circus* mermaid whose soul was stolen by the ringmaster. *squeal* and I can’t wait to see the movie. Like seriously, what could be better than a circus mermaid? Answer: Nothing, I tell you, nothing.

But also this is basicly my Work-In-Progress novel, only my story forgot the mermaids. That’s right, I’ve got the investigator, the stealing-soul-kinda ringmaster, the trapped circus performers, BUT I DON’T HAVE A MERMAID! What was I thinking….but now it’s too late to do anything but admire the story I should have made.

That Time I Issue a Dire Warning to You Dear Readers:

Life lesson: Don’t sleep through the night! Get up, go to the magical lake at the stroke of midnight. Otherwise mermaids will laugh at you and spite you and taunt you forever. Elusive sirens indeed. Listen to the call of the sirens before it’s too late. They are vicious and unforgiving. Follow them before you’re exiled to a life of almost encounters like mine. Go live your mermaid life and I’ll admire from afar.

Update:

But wait, there’s more! Since the original guestposting about my mermaid curse, you all rallied around and helped me BREAK the mermaid curse. Whaaat? I know, it’s so rad. Check out the details on my blogpost “To break a mermaid curse.”

Musings, Showcasing other Creatives

Cirqueophile Meets Circus

Did you know that “cirqueophile” isn’t a word? Weird, ’cause I’m pretty sure I am one.

Okay, so I’ve been to the circus before. But my inability to speak to strangers, especially super exciting amazing talented performers I envy a little a lot. Umm, I always find some reason to not actually interact with them.

Not this time though.

A serendipitous turn of events, involving coworkers that are not cirqueophiles, led me, my business manager Yasmeen, my research assistant Courtney, and my niece Emily to receive free tickets to the Shrine Circus. And my research assistant wasn’t going to let my excuse of helping Emily enjoy her first trip to the circus stop us from meeting the cirque folk.

Arriving, Yasmeen and I were naming off characters from my book – “Hey, that looks like Phoebe!” – and ideas for my book – “We need more fire acts….” Little did I know these people that were inspiring my story might actually speak with me, to me, tell me their story.

Photo Cred: Yasmeen Hudson
Photo Cred: Yasmeen Hudson

That’s right, I’m the aunt that lets the kiddoes stay up late after a circus show to meet the performers. If that’s not “the cool aunt” I don’t know what is. Courtney told Lola that I was writing a book set at the circus, and asked if we could have a brief interview after the show. She arranged for her sister Julie to meet with us. Julie’s story was amazing and had us remembering that the wonder of the circus extends past childhood.

Circus 3
PhotoCred: Yasmeen Hudson

Julie has grown up in the circus, training for all the acts she wants to perform. We got to watch her ride the elephants and perform aerial silks, but she does even more than that.

The dedication of performers is exceptional – it makes me think of adrenaline junkies, only more nitch to crazy dangerous beautiful acts of spectacle. Always a little stronger, a little faster, a little farther. And it’s all for the gasps and applause of a worldwide audience. Only circus performers aren’t like a celebrity, they don’t get the glory, their names aren’t known. If there is any glory, it is all passed on to the idea of circus.

PhotoCred: Yasmeen Hudson
PhotoCred: Yasmeen Hudson

A while ago, Julie was injured during an act. She wasn’t expected to recover, was in crutches for about 6 months. She couldn’t imagine what she would do without performing, without this life she’d been so dedicated to. She pushed and trained and here she was, performing, living her dream and awakening ours. I was so blessed that she opened up about that time of her life, which gave me an idea for my story, but more importantly gave me a glimpse of her and motivated me to move forward.

Consider me obsessed – I fully intend on going to the circus and meeting as many performers as possible. And uhh, maybe Courtney can tag along to arrange the meeting. And uhh, while we’re at it, maybe Yasmeen could tag along for photography. And uhh, while we’re at it, I might take my nieces too 🙂

Blog Signature Final

Musings

WIP Research: Circus Extravaganza!

www.wikipedia.org
www.wikipedia.org

  Okay, it’s not called “Circus Extravaganza.” But that is quite catchy, right? Here’s something equally alluring from my perspective though – The Worldwide Circus Summit. “Ooh” and “ahh” now, please.

Conferences can be tedious, monotonous, and a real snooze. Or they can be an exhilarating way to glean information in a condensed timeframe. And a circus conference? I would plan on the latter.

I need to understand the ins and outs of a circus show. And here’s my in. Basicly any research I need to do circus-wise can found in one place, right? Now I just need to get a ticket & roadtrip it next year. So if anyone’s wanting to come up with a creative birthday gift for me, you’re welcome. I promise to forget about this blogpost by then.

What Say You?

Know of any great circuses coming to town (near Peoria, IL), some local “extravaganza”? I need to know! I can get some research done, ya know, sooner than 2015. What about other great circus researching resources?

If you’re a writer, what setting are you researching now, or have you recently researched?

http://worldwidecircussummit2015.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/10/save_the_date_sm.jpg
http://worldwidecircussummit2015.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/10/save_the_date_sm.jpg

for the Bookworms, Musings

WIP: Unfixed Teaser

In the course of writing a novel you inevitably come across people asking, “What’s your book about?” In the course of submitting a work-in-progress (WIP) to an agent or publisher, there is a query to submit that states what the book is about – quite similar to the back of a book to pique the reader’s interest. Though I am still writing my WIP tentatively titled Unfixed, the number of people who ask “What’s your book about?” gave me reason to practice. Below you will find my working query, back of book, or teaser – whichever way you want to think of it. While the general wording or story may change, this is my current idea.

“Shall we put her together again?”
Silence.
“Well?” Dr. Wise looked at the pale couple.
“What do you mean?” Mr. Trencher coughed, finding his throat very suddenly dry.
“Put her together. Fix her,” Dr. Wise replied.
“But she is dead,” Mr. Trencher hoarsely explained.
“She isn’t Humpty Dumpty, Mr. Trencher. She left death before. She is simply fascinating. She could live again.” Dr. Wise rubbed his hands together and leaned forward to touch the arm closest to him on the floor. Then he paused, as if realizing the inappropriateness of such behavior in front of two bewildered and grieving parents, and sat up in his seat, letting his hands clench the desk to ascertain that they would not move again.

Julia Trencher has died. Twice. Yet she is no zombie. Hiding behind her parents money had been enough for her, to simply visit the doctor each time she broke. But when she meets the strange boy Sylas in the waiting room, he offers hope of others like her – freaks and outcasts, content as they are.

Great Geppetto’s Circus of the Travelling Strange is a place she could be welcomed, celebrated even. Just a simple contract Geppetto has written could provide a place where Julia may not be so strange after all. Geppetto has plans of his own, having learned that the success or obliteration of the entire circus depends on this contract with Julia. Meanwhile, Julia must decide if the circus is truly a community as it claims, or rather an enslavement the others have been powerless to escape from.

Your Response:

If you’re a writer, what’s your query (tentative or otherwise)? If you’re a reader, what makes you want to read a story? Is there any specific info that grabs you in the writing on a bookjacket?