Buckaroo Banzai.

“On the previous Writing For Comics Workshop, the teacher gave us a prompt, and we had to develop. We had two options The Moon Mall, with a lot of characters, and Pizza Pit. Mine was the first choice. I love malls and…”

I’m trying to keep up with the blog, and as you can see, I’m failing miserably. Working on my full time job, while finishing my full time online bachelor’s writing degree, while also planning my move to Austin,TX, I dont have the time I would like to devote myself to this blog.

I recently read on a book, of one of my favorite authors Mrs. Rachel Hollis, saying “You have to dedicate at least one hour of your days to your own projects”, I get it, and I keep trying, but this extra hour is usually going to my school projects. Does that count as one hour of my day to me? Or do I have to find another hour? Please, send help.

In this July class, we are having Portfolio VI, which is one of the classes you work to polish a previous content you wrote before. Guess what? I’m back with comics!! I do enjoy comics, I do not enjoy the pressure to make write it. Splash page, page by page, act 1, 2 and 3. But hey! I didn’t have to do any lettering (I hope I don’t get a surprise lettering assignment next week), because that was one of the hardest week of school, and I took physics and Math before.

On the previous Writing For Comics Workshop, the teacher gave us a prompt, and we had to develop. We had two options The Moon Mall, with a lot of characters, and Pizza Pit. Mine was the first choice. I love malls and the variety of things that can happen and what you can create if its a Mall placed in the Moon. On this class, we have to polish the previous script, and let me tell you, I rushed to write mine, because I wrote it in 2 hours, right before submit. I work much better under pressure!

I will have to rewrite the entire script, as the goal of this month is making it to 12 pages. A entire comic script will be ready by the end of this month. Heck! I’m proud of myself! Graduation is knocking on my door, and I’m opening.

Here is what I take from two and a half years of Creative Writing Classes, to quote Beyonce: “If my country ass can do it, you can do it!” Yes, I get back to those days, when I didn’t speak any English and I want to encourage people that thinks their english is not good, or they have an accent, or they were not born and raised in this country. I wasn’t either. I started learning english at 15, and only to start somewhat to talk when I was 19. Don’t be scared to say whatever you want to say in your second language. It only because of me babbling words, and making up phrases, I get to be where I’m today. And please, do never, ever, try lose your accent.

Ps: I’m back to write this post two week after. My Comic book Script got a lot of improvements, but still not ready.

Working Girl.

There are days when self-confidence is nowhere to be found. Let’s be real, there are days when all I want to do is stare at the wall or share cat videos on my social media.

There is a certain burden of being connected all the time. I keep thinking of how much happiness and efficiency people can have in just one day. I was talking to a friend yesterday about the social paradox. People are always the happiest, their babies are the cutest and the moms are always sharing something about it, we didn’t ask for. Successful people are a whole different category. They are always shining and their life path is incredible. Can you be that happy all the time, or do you literally want me to feel like I’m not achieving anything? Aww… I’m sorry! Are you trying something new? Look how I’m successful with my first choice of career, I’m doing awesome and I’m not even 30 years old yet! Argh. It’s about time for people to start getting real.

I work in a high class five-star hotel in downtown Chicago. Like where everyone uses a radio to communicate, they wear suits and have their life together. Believe me, they don’t. Hospitality Management was my first career choice when I was 19. At that time, all I wanted to do was travel with my camera, write about it, and boy, I got that wrong. Over the years, I’ve always worked in the hospitality field and usually I get bored, because let me be real, it is boring. There is nothing fresh, ever, your creativity is busted, there is a box on the way in, that says “creativity” and you usually have to drop it there and get it on the way out. Like your keys. You are always trying to accommodate people’s needs. Sometimes you have to take a banana, at 3AM, to the room, because the guest’s kids forgot to do an experiment for the school and he needs it. They need it right now. How could you not bring the banana up here in 15 minutes?? Yeah, that kind of demanding situation. If you are a creative person like me, you cut the banana in pieces and make it into a little heart, write “good luck” on the plate, just to have the guest call back and ask for another banana, because you anticipated the guests needs wrong.

I have to make ends meet until I’m done with Creative Writing School, in September. I’m still not sure of what path I will take after it, I didn’t even call my career advisor yet, because I won’t have the answers she needs to help me out. Last month, I had Writing for Comics Workshop and it was a terrible month. My assignments were piling up, in a crunched timeline. We had to learn Adobe Illustrate in two days in order to make the assigned comic page. Who learns an entirely new piece of software in two days? Yeah sure, if you have nothing else to do in your life, but I work at the Demanding Hotel, my hours are crazy. That’s probably the reason why when I have days off, I stare at the wall. Before this class, I was really into writing for comics, the teacher hit me with a cold bucket of water in my face and I have to find something else to do. Apparently, you have to get connections, you have to be so good, and you have to shine in order to get a job in the field. I’m running out of options here. Help!

The lettering project gone wrong.

Valentine’s?

Last week was Valentine’s day. I don’t celebrate it, because I think it is extremely commercialized, and it makes most people who are not in a relationship feel unaccomplished. I’m happily married and I don’t think I need a special day to make my husband feel special. We buy gifts whenever we feel like it. Before I keep writing about my week in Creative Writing school, let me just explain why I stopped caring about Valentine’s day.  When I was about 15, my face was all formatted wrong by that time. Basically, like the drawing at the end of the post.

I grew up in Rio, where there is a cult for body image, and everyone is part of it, it is very radical. People work out massively during the week and Sundays they go to the beach, which for me, it was like going to the butcher shop. Nobody has fun, they turn to the sun, with the bikinis up their butts, and just burn. They look around, they flirt, they suntan. It’s like a lively market. I never felt so uncomfortable, and some of my friends, who remain my friends until these days ( We shared the pain of being normal amidst the zoo) didn’t feel comfortable either.

I continuously felt bad for not being their type of beautiful. My hair was dry, I didn’t have fancy clothes, didn’t go to cool places. Nothing felt right. Valentine’s day would only make it worse. The girls from school used to talk about what they had planned with the boy they were hanging out with and I was sad to the core. The only thing hanging with me would be my Backstreet Boys poster on the wall. One of my friends, a bit younger than myself, got Valentine’s card, from the kid she was seeing, she was 13, and I was 15, almost 16. Ah! The humiliation!  I went home and burst out crying. When would that ever be me? When would it ever be my turn? I cried listening to Pink, at the window, because that is how intense and dramatic I was (it didn’t get much better). I promised from that day on, I would not care. So, until these days, the only good thing about Valentine’s is the day after, when I get to buy all that candy for cheap. Ha! who is winning now? And yes I learned, you shouldn’t feel bad about yourself ever. I learned throughout life that people are mean and senseless. It’s ok to be yourself.

Back to my Creative writing, and the reason why I’m not writing here more often,  is because all I do is assignments. Last week, I had to create and illustrate a kids booklet. The instructions said 24 to 32 pages, no more than a thousand words, keep it simple, the age group is 0-6 years old. That means that I had to have an easy vocabulary, maybe rhyme and visual that would follow the story.  I bought new pens, I scribbled insanely on photoshop ( I’m still learning how to use it), I kept coming back and forth with the decision if I would do it on the computer or by hand. I decided to do the whole project by hand. On Sunday night, I finished the drawings, wrote the story on the pages, took photos, send it to my computer, put it on powerpoint, save the file on PDF. I re-read the instruction before submitting. Only to figure out it was either 24 or 32 remember? I had 19.

By that time, I was exhausted, my right eye was hurting, according to my chiropractor husband, due to stress and screen time, I couldn’t do anything else. My brain was on fire. I draw by reference, meaning, I see a picture, and I followed the same lines, sometimes it works, it depends on my dedication. I did a few more drawings, took photos, added to the slides, uploaded. Now I just have to wait. I wrote the teacher a couple of times, and he said the grades are not coming from the drawings. And for that I’m thankful.

Am I here?

I don’t think anyone reads this and I’m probably right. So every six months I came by, write some random stuff and disappear for another six months. The only thing keeping me away from writing more often is the number of assignments  I have to work on every week for my Creative Writing for the Entertainment BachelorsDegree. I truly enjoy it, but my energy and focus go to that.

I have one class per month. This month I had Lit Genre of Fantasy/ Sci-Fi and Lit Genre of Horror/Mystery. For the last one, I had to watch some horror movies, for an article I should be working on right now. I really don’t like or watch this type of movies, but I enjoy writing the short script more than I ever imagine. It’s like my own piece of art.

The script for the short movie is about three friends, who decided to investigate a ghost that lives in the girls’ bathroom, and comes out to scare every once in while. That might not be too scary for some; but my teacher told me to write something that scares me, something that frightens me and that certainly do. Let me tell you why.

Growing up in Brasil, in the ’90s, we had to deal with all kind of tales. Every other school had one, but The Blond in the bathroom was kind of Union of all schools tales. I heard about this one in 1995, and girls from my school, older kids, used to talk about this during recess. A few times I almost pee myself, because I was too scared to use the bathroom. One of those days, we were lining up to go outside, for Gym classes, I couldn’t hold myself and HAD to go use the restroom.

Frightened to my core, I went in. As soon as I walked in, the kids outside started to knock on the door yelling “The blond in the Bathroom, Blond in the Bathroom”, we all knew once you called her 3 times, she would come out.  Oh jeez, I finished so fast and almost came out with the short in my hands. Terrified. Even my teacher laughed. I was about to cry. Time passed and 7 grade they started with that again. I was not that scared, but still a bit conscious about it.

So as soon as my teacher gave us the assignment, I brought back this crazy childhood memory. I would love to make it into a short movie. Who knows, maybe at some near future. I might submit to the Film School department, at my school.

JS