It's been a really long time since I've been a giddy fan, overcome with excitement that the object of my admiration dared to defy the heavens and look upon me with a small hint of notice, as if their acknowledgement of my existence validated that existance. It's been a long time that I've walked around with my head held high, seeing myself as an equal, neither above nor below. When you do that... it puts a big chink the practice of being fan.
On the flip side, having published my first novel a few years ago, I've been trying to acclimate my mind into thinking the world hasn't fallen apart and people have become zombies... therefore resulting in me actually having fans of my own. No one in their right mind would follow me, or even be slightly impressed. I've always thought I was my biggest fan. To be quite honest, sometimes I don't like having to share such adoration with anyone else; I'm quite possessive of me. I've never been one to desire the practice of pleasing others, and quite often fail miserably at it. It's been a challenge allowing others (like I had any control over it) to covey their appreciation for the gifts and talents I've been given.
On the edges of that same coin, I'm surrounded by several people who have very healthy fan bases, yet they're just regular joe's to me... friends, children of, parents of, siblings of, members of, and very well connected or talented leaders of; I've sort of become numb to the whole idea and concept of being a fan or being the object of facination.
What a bleak and boring world that makes when everyone is on the same playing field. Greatness gets lost among the muck. True appreciation flitters in the wind without any direction.
I've learned lately that I can truly admire someone's gifts and talents without actually liking them. So, if it's true for me... then it must be true for everyone else. So, my zombie theory is rapidly desintergrating and I'm coming to appreciate my fans. I'm also getting a bit excited about returning to the practice and exercise of being a fan myself. It's time to pull the pins out of my hair and let it blow in the breeze, and give appreciation something to grasp onto.
So, I smile today... as a FAN. I received a tweet response from actor Paul Bettany, whose talent and humor I highly admire. I once again felt like that young girl in 3rd grade getting a letter from news anchor Glen Burns as a response to a class project, or at 13 getting to meet Duran Duran back in 1985, or when I received an autographed picture and letter from actor Michael Rosenbaum thanking me for my Smallville reviews in 2002, or meeting and giving a copy of my book to all 10 cast members of the Vampire Diaries last year, meeting actor Gil Gerard at the grocery store, or meeting and talking to best-selling authors like D.J. MacHale, Julie Kagawa, Cinda Chima Williams, Charlene Harris, Garth Nix, etc.
I'm constantly surrounded by great talent and even greater celebrity, and somewhere among all that greatness I lost my sense of fandom. So, I'd like to take this moment and let these great talented people know that I highly admire their work, their gifts and their talent. I might not like them all as people, but I'm a huge fan of their work.
Thursday, August 04, 2011
Ever dreamt you were at the bottom of the ocean? You can see the shimmering sliver of light above you, but no matter how much you kick your feet and tread water, you just can’t reach the top? You’re lungs are about to burst from holding the small pocket of air, feeling every little bubble press against your chest, screaming for release and refill? You begin to lose consciousness and get confused, not knowing up and down until blackness swarms in as you open up your mouth and inhale.
In the past when I had dreamt of being underwater and felt the pressure of airless lungs, I’m somehow was able to find the supernatural ability to breathe beneath the surface, commanding, combining and extracting the small pockets of oxygen. But, recently my dreams have changed and my superpower of underwater breathing fails me… and I’m drowning.
Now, for those intent on interpreting this dream - I believe I already know its meaning and there isn’t a thing I can do about it.
I’ve always enjoyed my dreams, even the scary ones because the story always ended with a sense of empowerment and victory. No matter how evil the monster, I always won. I’ve always contributed this to the spirit to fight and overcome adversity that dwelled within me, always assuring victory, reminding me of the truly evil obstacles I’ve overcome in the past. I really have climbed some tall mountains; some that would have destroyed and defeated your average person. Sometimes, I’m still in awe at some of them, knowing that I could never have overcome them on my own.
Yet, here I find myself, really for the first time in my life feeling spent. I’ve been on the battlefield for so long, and fought so many enemies, struggled through so many wars… I’m tired. The war still rages around me, but I don’t have the strength anymore to pick up my sword. I know if I don’t fight, the enemies that surround me will strike me down. My standard billows behind me, acknowledging my position, yet I don’t move. When I was young, the passion to fight and the dream of Camelot filled my head. The ugliness of the world I saw around me didn’t have to be the world in which I lived. I could change it, one small step at a time. Where did my passion and my fight go? I sit here and see Camelot filled with swords as the battle rages around me. So much death; so much carnage. Yet, I know there’s a land flowing with milk and honey at the end of the battle, a fortress, a place of rest filled with love and peace; at least until the next army of enemies comes and a new fight breaks out to protect; to defend; to conquer.
I’m as Jonah… my spirit to fight has left me and I don’t want to continue the mission of God. I have boarded a boat going in the opposite direction, the storm has come, and I find myself in the belly of big whale that carries me into the depths. I don’t know if I can change my heart and be spit out onto dry ground. Why not just remain in the belly of this whale, in the darkness, in the water’s depth until no more air, no more breath, no more struggles? My spirit is willing, but my flesh is just plain worn out!!!! Some will say, “Think of others”. I don’t want to think of anything. I can’t save the world. It’s not my job. I can’t even save myself, I’ve not the power.
I’m a puppet in this play, just like everyone else. I used to dream of string-less adventures, but now I just want to be cut loose and placed in a box. I don’t want to entertain anymore. I don’t want to dream; dreaming hurts. The puppet master doesn’t need me to complete the performance; he has plenty of others to fulfill his demands.
Whether a fallen knight, a runaway prophet or a useless puppet… I’m spent. Unless the King, the God or the puppet master lifts me up, I can’t move. Unless He fills me with new breath, I can’t breathe.