About 8 months ago, I had written a blogpost regarding my intentions on writing a book. Eventually, a table of contents was created, specific sections were mapped out, and a handful of rough chapters were written. While I had a fantastic time trying to figure out how to construct a piece of writing that spanned 55,000 words, I came to an unfortunate realization as the process went on.
The vast majority of the writing was overtly weak.
Sure, some sections were great. I was pleasantly surprised with the way certain moments dealing with childhood and early 20s life turned out. A lot of those topics I hadn't thought about in a very long time and looking back on those experiences in such a deep way allowed me to view them in a much more sophisticated mindset than when I was first going through them.
But then there were the writings that dealt with more recent events.
To put it bluntly, those sections completely failed for one simple reason - I lacked the benefit of hindsight.
I couldn't think of anything constructive or creative when it came to the events of the past year. And as time went on and I got further into the process of writing, I realized that there were specific things that began to not matter as much as they once did.
It's difficult to write about something that no longer has much meaning to you.
However, through this process I've learned a great deal about the importance of the things we hold onto, whether they be positive or negative. Either way, they mean something to us, they're important to us.
Each of us has been given a set of unique experiences, but some experiences stay with us more than others.
That's not to say that current events should never be written about, in fact, I wholly encourage it. But there is an odd benefit to holding off and waiting for a period of time. I've found that the farther removed I am from an experience the more enlightened my thoughts on it tend to be.
I've written about memory before and how much of a gift it truly is, but with memory also comes the blessing of time (which none of us like to see pass). It's true that time is something we can never get back, each of us knows this. But when was the last time you thought about its benefits?
Time can provide growth, healing, and maturation. We don't normally acknowledge that.
I'm more of a fan of myself at 26 than at 20. There wasn't anything "wrong" with me in my younger age, but time - and everything I have experienced within it - has helped me to become an even better version of the person I was created to be.
The book will be written someday, but in the meantime, I'm on a book writing hiatus.
There's a whole lot to write about when it comes to the last 2 months, but I've been waiting to reflect on those things and will continue to do so.
With the benefit of hindsight, there will be a lot more to say when the time is right.
I had no intention of putting together an EP this week, but it happened. For whatever reason, it happened.
Three pieces of music in three days. This is the result.
Each track was made with a single instrument.
Track 1 with a synthesizer. Track 2 with a guitar. Track 3 with a piano.
The EP can be downloaded for free at www.projectatlantic.bandcamp.com.
Thanks for listening.
I've been listening to CDs a lot lately. Not because I really want to, but because its my only means of listening to music in my car.
A few months ago, the auxiliary input in my car's stereo broke. I'm not a fan of the radio so my only option now is CDs. Specifically, mix CDs.
I made a new mix CD this past week and out of 20 songs, I've only really wanted to listen to one, the last track on the album. More specifically, the last minute and a half of said song.
The track is called "Wait"; an ironic title for a song I am eager to reach the ending of.
Long story short, it's a piece of music I really enjoy.
I hope you do too.
See you next week.
It's been well over a month since I've written anything of substance and I can't seem to find an answer to why that is.
I usually find that the things that prompt me to write are experiences, something which I've had plenty of over the past month. I've traveled to new places, had a lot of thought provoking conversations, and have been plenty busy both teaching and working on music.
And yet, I haven't much to say about any of these things.
It's a curious situation.
I think the days of being capable of writing a weekly blogpost are behind me. I was in a very specific season when I began my routine back in September, and over time, the season slowly passed and finally concluded a month or two ago.
It's a period of time I am both happy and sad to have moved on from.
For those of you out there who are currently in a season of creative output, I do have a word of advice for you: be thankful, for it truly is a rarity.
I can count the number of creative seasons I've had on one hand. They are few and far in between and as of now, I'm in the "in between" stage.
In my experience, these seasons aren't something you can go about falling into by choice, they simply "happen". Inspiration is stumbled upon.
With all of that being said, I'll still be updating every Friday. I can't guarantee 500 words of new material every week, but maybe a couple of paragraphs or a piece of music I've been listening to.
Being consistent is a good habit (most of the time).
I'm not quite sure what sort of feeling this post conveys. I surely don't want it to come off as a downer. I greatly look forward for what's to come in this new, albeit different season.
Writing is fun, photography is beautiful, filmmaking makes you think, and music can brighten up anyone's day.
Art is a blessing, for that I am sure.
This is my third attempt at writing this post.
I find the idea of communicating to others where my music comes from to be daunting. I could speak all day about the technical details - melody, chords, rhythm, etc. - but when it comes to what they are about, well, that's another story.
There's a reason for that.
I've never perceived any of my music to be "about" things, rather I like to think of each piece as being "inspired" by something.
I began writing and recording my own music about 6 years ago. It started out of nowhere. I had been playing for a long time but I had never made anything original. It was strange to have never really composed music before and then all of a sudden have the ability to do so. I remember having put together about 4 or 5 pieces over the span of a few weeks and I had no idea why this was happening. And even then, I knew that they weren't "about" anything in particular.
It wasn't until a few years later what I was actually doing.
The music I was making was a reaction to the things that were going on around me.
I now like to look at the music as a form of journaling, very abstract, but journaling nonetheless. Each album, EP, or single is an "aural journal", a sonic response to the things that have affected me.
A longing to return to my childhood inspired Let's Go Back.
Anticipating going home after spending two years in Florida inspired Closer Than Ever.
A lousy weekend inspired The Way Things Go.
Someone who meant an awful lot to me inspired I Am Here and so Are You.
Still, not every piece I make immediately has a clear inspiration behind it. I sometimes don't realize what inspired me to create until years later. The four most recent pieces I've made fall into this category. I have a vague idea of what inspired them but I probably won't have a really good grasp of where they came from until later on.
I always reach a point where I feel that I am no longer going to be able to make any more music. I felt that way at the beginning of this year and I currently am feeling this way as I write this, but then something usually happens. I get to go through a new experience, someone I know affects me in a deeply personal way, or I get to travel to some place new. It's then that something musical leaps out from me because I am so appreciative of what I've been given.
Every song is really just a thanks for something I am blessed to experience.
I don't believe that what I am doing is anything special or that anyone else is incapable of creating in such a way. I truly believe that music is something everyone can make.
The world could use a few more aural journalists.