Archive for your mom

C is For Ca$h … and Cookie.

Posted in The Writing Process (How do I Come up These Beats?) with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on 04/03/2013 by Angel D. Vargas

A lot is happening in my creative spheres that I want to share with you all.

I’m a writer. But I don’t just write blogs, and I won’t hide the short stories and the novels I’m coming up with. My story on Jukepopserials, ‘Unbreakable,’ has its readers. I’ve taken quite a shine to writing it. As the characters continue to evolve, they find new ways to reveal their stories to me. All I do is translate for my characters in a way that honors them and reflects their true nature.

When I started this adventure on Jukepop, I had no idea that the story was going to become what it is. I’ve already come up with 26 installments or chapters, and it seems that each of my characters has a long journey ahead of them. Who knows how each trek will progress, and what it will mean for the post apocalyptic world that I’ve created?

I had the notion once upon a time that there was little to be gained from revealing what is truly at stake when I write this serial. I enjoy writing . Committing my visions to text has been nothing short of amazing. I respect writers who bring their A game all the time, and putting on a game face when I sit to type out the latest installment can be a real challenge. Real life can feel a lot hairier than a zombie apocalypse and hell fire.

To say that I do it for the money, therefore, would seem trivial. But it’s not. You see, the top thirty stories on website receive accolades and cash prizes. While I always bring my best to the table, there is a lot more riding on getting votes on that site then I was willing to admit until now. I wasn’t even sure this story would make it past 15 chapters. But the narrative has taken off. ‘Unbreakable’ remains among the top 45 out of nearly 200 serials on the site.

I know I can do better.

So I will ask everyone I may or may not know, writer, reader, or candlestick maker, to do something.

Go read Unbreakable, create an account on Jukepop and lend me your votes.  When you’re finished doing that, spread the word! Tell friends, family, co workers, anyone with an internet connection on any device who might be interested in horror/paranormal fiction. I’ve been sneaking into the top thirty for a while. It’s time I stopped sneaking and started barreling ahead.

In other news, I’ve decided to lend my voice to another exciting project. A friend of mine named Shaun Adams offered me the chance to record one of his creepiest horror tales in my own dulcet tones. I’ve done small things like this before, and I really like Shaun’s ideas. Take a listen to ““Soil Dweller,” written by Shaun Adams, Recorded by Angel D. Callido.” Let Shaun know what you think of his work. Let me know what you think of mine 😉 Want more of Shaun’s stories? Maybe you should find out when Evil is Free on Amazon.com.

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Warrior of the Word.

Posted in The Flow and Rhythm of Life, The Writing Process (How do I Come up These Beats?) with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on 04/03/2013 by Angel D. Vargas

Sometimes a warrior just has to come home, throw their weapons in a corner, sink their tired, broken bodies into a chair and cry their eyes out.

 

Countless soldiers throughout history have probably done this. I know what we all see in the news when war heroes come home to their families. These survivors hug their spouses who’ve lived without their touch for years. They hug their children though they’ve missed precious milestones. Many people have moved on in their absence. Most have gone through their own trials and traumas. Still, everyone big and small feels that their story is the important one.

 

That’s just the human condition.

 

I’m guilty of this too. The good thing is I’m not alone. I’m about to tell you a story.

 

I’ve become a warrior of the word.

 

I know what you’re thinking. I sound like one of those nut jobs who quote the Bible and hurl Molotov cocktails into abortion clinics. If you’ve read some of my writing, you might think I’ve snapped and begun channeling one of my favorite characters.

 

“Pleasure to meet you. My name is Ezekiel.”

 

But that’s not the truth either. The reality may be just as difficult to fathom.

 

I moved back to New York two years ago. I had little money, a soaring credit card debt, and the wisp of a hope that I might get a job through a relative.

 

Time has a way of revealing one’s destiny. While I was putting interview clothes I couldn’t afford on a credit card, I was searching. I was waiting. I was hoping that I hadn’t wasted my time coming back home. I didn’t want a repeat of the six months I’d spent in Illinois trying to figure life out. That stretch of time saw me spinning my  wheels and not knowing how to make ends meet. Opportunities were few and far between. Though my best friend from college reached out to me and tried to help me out, I just wasn’t prepared for life in a Midwestern suburb. I didn’t even have a driver’s license. I failed.

 

Mental note. Don’t ever live in a suburb without a car or a license.

 

I came back home hoping that I wouldn’t go insane. I was a thirty something and living in a tiny apartment with my parents and my grown autistic brother.

 

If you’re doing a double take after that last statement, don’t worry. You won’t be the only one.

 

But times are tough for “thirty -somethings” these days. I’ve heard it all before. People in my generation with college degrees can’t even get into entry level retail work. I won’t even get into that hot mess. People have tough choices to make even though some of us just paid off twenty five thousand dollars in student loans. Sure, one could go back to school if one could somehow pay for it. Being out of college for more than a decade might mean your college credits mean nothing for all those associate’s programs.

 

There’s just one other hitch. Assuming that there are affordable school programs to attend, it pays to know which jobs aren’t being whittled down to nothing in this economy.

 

I was applying for a job in Portland, Oregon to work at a Sears as a clerk.  I applied online, landed the interview, and was asked to come in during a Thursday afternoon. The human resources recruiter seemed nice enough, but very sad and distracted throughout the conversation. After telling me that the original position was being whittled down from twenty hours a week to twelve due to “a major oversight,” he older woman turned to me and laid in on the line.

 

“There are thirty, forty, even fifty year old people applying for entry level clerk positions with this company. We’ve got people with Masters Degrees and PHD’s who need this work, and we can’t do much for them. Let’s face it. The economy is in the crapper.”

 

After 14 months in the city, I was able to land a part time job as a book seller at a local Barnes and Noble. Since then, I’ve not been able to attain anything else.

 

I think it might be safe to say that for some, the economy STILL looks like something a toilet bowl cleaner ought to erase.

 

Life is funny. Promises are broken, constant effort feels more like the definition of insanity, and broke people start to quote musicians and philosophers as though looking for a reason. Life can feel like a cruel joke. Of late, it leaves me feeling a bit like those broken warriors.

 

Is there a reason to it all? Is life what happens to you when you’re busy making other plans?

 

I’m still struggling with that question.

 

On one hand, I would officially call myself an underemployed janitor for the local Barnes and Noble. I just happen to know a thing or two about a book.

 

Perhaps that’s because I’m writing them.

 

Writing has been an anchor for me since I reclaimed it more than a year ago. I might never be a real estate tycoon or win the lottery, but writing is something that I will be able to do no matter what my financial or family status. I won’t put the computer down unless it breaks. Even if that happens, I used to use a little something called a pen, and I used to put that object to another handy object called “paper.”

 

The things one learns in school really can make a difference.

 

Nobody talks to me for more than a few minutes without realizing I’ve got more sarcasm in my pinky then most have in their entire bodies. But I shudder to think what my life would be like today if I hadn’t started to write. I’m not always going to write short stories or books. I can’t imagine I will always show my words to people. But I’ve made a few good friends along the way. People have read my words. More will read them one day, and I may even be able to make a decent living because of it.

 

Life seems to be split down the middle of chaos. On the one hand, I don’t make enough money at my current job to scratch my testicles. But on the flip side, I write because I have the time and the imagination to come up with the stuff. Real life might not be glamorous, but it offers me a chance to experience love, hate, anger, euphoria, and all the other emotions that I can pour with such realism into each and every one of my made up characters.

 

Fate doesn’t normally interest me. I like to think that I am always in control of my own life. These last few years have been like a huge dose of humble pie. I’m not powerless, but curious things do happen when I allow myself to engage in what matters to me. In the last year, people have come to me that I did not expect. People have read my words, and some have been able to relate. A special someone has danced their way into my life.

 

Philosophical discussions of fate either annoy or terrify people like me. Maybe that’s why fate sneaks up on so many of us. It probably happens despite everything I believe, and all I can do is the best that I can until God or the universe reveals my purpose.

 

Until that happens, I’ll write, I’ll love, and I ride on the roller coaster that is my life. I can’t be the fatalist, but I can sure as hell strap in. Let other people deal when someone releases the fucking Kraken. I’ll write a book about it when it’s over.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Manual Stimulation

Posted in Drum Roll, The Flow and Rhythm of Life with tags , , , , , , , , , on 08/18/2012 by Angel D. Vargas

It’s time for something a little different.

Some of my followers may already know that I like to record my own voice for the web to hear. Well, I and two friends of mine have decided to try to take that idea in a whole new direction.

Allow me to introduce a podcast that we three have dubbed Manual stimulation. It started just a few days ago.

The voices for the show are E.,  J. Marie Ravenshaw, and me (Angel Callido). We’re three friends who like to talk about anything and everything. Life is just too fucking funny, and so are we. We’ve decided to let people in on some of our more colorful conversations.

In our latest episode,  we’ve decided to talk about all manner of things, including floods and haircuts “Agh-Nud” Shwartzenegger, the Bible, rednecks, and of course, teeters and peters.

The video idea is new. For this episode, public domain videos were used in order to provide you all with an amazing (and purely random) mixed media experience. Your jaw might drop.  We will probably continue to use this and other ideas to make out podcast more interesting to the audience. Comments and suggestions are always welcome. Who knows, we may even feature you on our show 😉

I will warn you all now. Anyone who is easily offended by harsh language, adult topics and humor, and just plain old random, off the wall nonsense .. y’all should just avoid this show. And for the love of Pete, don’t let your kids listen to this. 

Enjoy. 🙂

P.S. I will be posting a new blog entry myself either later today or tonight. Fear not. It will be recorded 😀

Manual Stimulation – WordPress 😉

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