Patreon Update

I cleaned up the Patreon (clink that link to consider helping out) site as much as I could. No new categories were added, but I removed the redundant ones.

Keep in mind: you still get a place in the “Thank You” section of the end of my book for continued support. I am not going to say when the new book will be done, but I have given the three chapters to a couple of friends of mine for opinions. They see where I am going with it, and are rather excited to see where it goes*.

*Their words, not mine.

Why I write about music.

I am very certain I have written about this topic before, but I’ll be damned if I’m going to search through hundreds of self-indulgent words mixed in with only a small amount of importance.

First and foremost; I think music is THE most important thing in life. I realize that you cannot consume it for nutrients, therefore it can be argued that food is the most important. This is MY blog and I will make my sweeping statements that cannot be backed up in anyway!

AHEM: I make that claim trying to keep my past out of the equation. It’s not a secret that I spent more than a decade working very closely with the music industry. Hell, I worked at a record store for seven years. I was playing on albums and playing shows since 2005. I produced a few albums and EP’s. I have almost 40 days worth of music sitting on my hard drive. I ran a record label. I review albums because it’s fun and I think I don’t suck at it…

So, why put music above everything?

It’s the one medium that collaborates every aspect of the arts while being recognized by every single culture.

What about the deaf?
They can feel beats and rhythm, and can even tap out an approximate flow if they can focus on the direction of the metre. As far as writing guitar or piano, if they know their music theory, they can easily do that. Not to mention that, if they went deaf later in life, they can probably remember things that sound good together.

Now, to elaborate on my claim about combining every art. To combine poetry and music seems like a simple task, but after watching others do it for years, I now can confirm that it is not as easy as one might think initially. You need to keep flow and metre in mind, as well as emotional weight and emphasis. That’s two of the arts down.

Let’s keep going.

Album art takes care of the visual arts, on the surface and immediate level, anyway. Again, I ran (a very bad and unprofessional) record label for years. Visual representation does generate sales, as shallow as that sounds.. If the album cover is appealing, people are more likely to pick it up. I am under the impression that is why vinyl came back in a large way: the larger cover plus the appeal of having something tangible.

(That’s what drew me in, anyway.)

Let us not forget music and lyric videos. Though music videos have kind of shrank in importance, the few that come out can greatly add OR detract from the appeal of the music. Lyric videos are huge.

Stage performance is a kind of acting. Even the “roots” acts one may see have cultivated that image, whether it be intentional or not. I have played with many acts who (consciously or subconsciously) do a full change when they go on stage. As a musician, you learn to play off the crowd expectation. That could be reactions to a previous move you make, or observations on how the other acts that evening maintain the attention of the masses.

So, after explaining all of this: let’s get back to the initial question of why I write about music so often!

  1. I love everything about music. The concept, the sound, the feel… Every part of music makes everything in my life have context, and it’s very hard for me to go a day without thinking critically about it in some way.
  2. I think that it is important. Whether it is in regards to mental or physical healing, the effects that it has on a being cannot be ignored. I cannot be bothered to source all the facts I know, so I’ll just bring up the emotional well-being it brings myself. I know that music makes me happier, and therefore I try to do things in life. Without music, I would have little context for waking up in the morning.
  3. I’m good at it. Well, I think I’m good at it. I at least find it fun to do, and if you don’t like it, stop reading my blog.

With all of this said, if there is a topic that you would like me to explore in further depth, please get hold of me somehow. I have been contacted by .no funeral. records to examine a few of their releases, and I am excited to roll those out over the next bit.

Let’s do more!

I have been contemplating what else to do outside of writing and producing. I have considered bolstering my YouTube channel, but that would feel forced. I am currently working on a new book, so writing a screenplay on the side seems a bit cumbersome. I cannot draw, and really do not have an urge to learn.

This is the conundrum that I find myself in: I feel like I should be doing more in the arts, but I have no idea where to put my effort into. Even worse, I hate everything I do even when I am told it’s okay. Hating everything you do is kind of the “artist-dilemma” though. I have yet to meet anyone doing anything involving some sort of art who thinks that their work is greater-than-par. I have met a few who think that they are hitting a new niche, which is cool.

I just keep holding out that Hannah will give me new Chance Procedure things to work on. I made that video for Patient Zero a while ago, and I have an itch to make that a full song. I have been in studio enough to know that you have to be prepared, so I’m not pushing as hard as I could.

Oh! Interesting fact; my old singer (Rahib) just had his birthday! I don’t know why I had an urge to share that on this blog, but there it is! He’s 30, so he is 15 days older than my little brother.

Side note: have you picked up the latest version of my book? It’s almost 3X larger, more grammatically correct, and (I might be biased, but) WAY better. I mean, it’s 1230298341X more depressing, but WAY better. Amazon finally updated some shit, though it’s still awkward to navigate. I have done everything I can on my end to make it easier. Review comes out soon, I hope!

International Wheelchair Day?

Did you know that there is an International Wheelchair Day on the first of March? I had no idea. I have things to say on the matter:

Yes, I do think it’s a good thing to have. It reminds people that there are some of us in a wheelchair. There are a lot of us, for sure. However, there is a very small percent of the world population. I feel like pointing out that fact may create a social backlash revoking some accessibility actions.

I would love to be proven wrong. I want the world to be accessible. Not even for me, but for everyone. Let’s face it: who doesn’t love being able to reach things on a top shelf? Who wouldn’t benefit from lighter, more accessible doors? I am not saying that a ramp into every location is nessissary, but not having access to even a temporary one, is just selfish at this point.

I am not going to go out of my way to make an issue at every place I go if they are not accessible. That’s not my job, and it is too large of an issue to put on one person. I am going to scream into the internet and point out just how STUPID it is when things aren’t. If you are a store, you are cutting yourselves off of a potential source of revenue.

I went on a rant a few months ago over on Twitter about how stupid it is when companies brag about having accessible parking now, only because not having it stunts any potential client growth, but now I am going to leave this here as a point of rally for people with disabilities of all sorts to raise their voices. I know that there are some things that are impossible to plan for, but at least companies should try. Just try.

Wow: got sidetracked there. My initial point was how I didn’t know International Wheelchair Day was a thing. I blame society. Yep. Point finally concluded.

A bear on a wire

I am kind of disturbed at how people seem to be loosing their minds over the whole isolation bit. I haven’t left the house for more than an hour in a year. It’s been several months since I went out and about, and I have packages to send. (sorrykatilldoitsoon)

Anyway, I went over all that recently. I am mostly writing as a reminder that I released a book a few weeks ago. Of course, I still have issues with Amazon dot com, but I hope to have all of that resolved next week. On that note, I have said “next week” about this issue for the last month or so. I hope that I am right this time.

In the meantime, the Friessen Press bookstore is a great way to get the book. They have pressing locations in Europe and the United States (on top of Canada), and it ensures that the most recent pressing gets delivered. It also delivers in arguably (I hear, though I haven’t done ordering for obvious reasons) the best time frame.

New asnP on the first, and the one after that is written. The next one is my usual format, but the one after is a poem/kids story. I am excited to hear what people think of both of them.

What is a “Friend”?

Let us consider what a friend truly is, because I think the internet has distorted the definition greatly. I’m not saying that is a bad thing, just a fact.

The Google definition is fun, if kind of vague. The idea of a friend being someone you know is a bit, well, bleak. I have plenty of people that I consider friends whom I have never and will never meet. We met online, and continue to speak online. I guess you could argue that we know each other mentally, and have no regard for physical appearance. I also know many people who consider me a friend that I have not spoken to in years. Some of which, and I hope no one gets offended by this concept, I would no longer like. This does not change that I would happily tell someone they are a “friend” if the topic gets brought up.

So, if someone says they have no friends, do they mean that literally? I was in a conversation with someone that I consider a sister, and she stated the harrowing fact that she “has no friends.” My reply was asking what I am. She then tried to reverse what she was saying, very non-gracefully. Eventually, she had to change her definition to “no friends around me” which is a point that I was in no position to argue. We do live over an hour apart, and I haven’t spent time with her in over a year.

I shouldn’t bitch. I played in bands for about a decade. I played hundreds of shows and in front of thousands of people. I have gone to cities not knowing anyone, and stayed the night at a random persons house surrounded by dozens of people. In the end of those events, I am guilty for going on a self-pitting rant about how I do not have any friends.

If even in situations when surrounded by people I can feel alone and hollow, what is a friend? I have had more important and impactful conversations with people I have never (and, most likely, will never) meet.

So, I raise the question: What is a friend?

I contend a rather sterile answer. What if friends are who we need at that moment? What if they are who we can categorize as a friend, and not actually “a friend”? That would alleviate the social pressure to be the classical definition of a friend. I cannot promise that this plan would fix much, or even should be considered, but I ask that it should be contemplated.

We all need to relieve the pressure to have a friend. We all need to stop changing ourselves to be a friend.

How Long?!

I have been doing this for just shy of five years. I will be making a proper declaration at that time, but I just wanted to say that I am disappointed with myself. Also, incredibly proud of myself!

Let’s start by talking about the disappointment. I have done 340 posts or so, but I think it would have been cooler if I was about to hit 500! I realize that it is unreasonable to believe that I could have hit that, given my update schedule was weekly for two years and monthly just prior to that. I think that my less than 400 posts in that short time is very fair, but it doesn’t stop me from fantasizing how badass it would have been to hit that number at the same time as five years! I’m just daydreaming, don’t mind me!

Now, for the pride. The fact that I have been doing this of my own volition for this long makes me very proud. I have done bands for longer than five years, but I was influenced/motivated by others to do so. I loved it, don’t read too far into it the wrong way. I still got motivation from outside sources and from the instant (and very obvious) appraisal.

Writing is far from instant. It can be weeks before I hear anything, and in the case of books, literal months. I write both the blogs and books for me first. I like what I’m writing and I like the voice that I write in. I find it entertaining, and I hope the readers do as well!

Patreon support has been fantastic, and much needed. I make sure to give every one of them a shoutout in my book (as of date of publication) and will do so in the event of the next one. For those of you who have donated, please expect the next anewsinPublication on the first. I am excited about this one. Not that I think any are particularly bad, but some I do tend to get attached to.

Personal Blog

I haven’t written one of these in a while. I just don’t think that I’m particularly interesting, and I have a hard time thinking that anyone would have any interest in anything that I am up to. So, I guess that’s the warning!

I wrote a new book! Not that I haven’t been riding that train for weeks now…

It’s been re-released under You’re Not Dead, but I fixed the grammar and spelling huge, plus I filled it out with fictional bits. It now sits just over 200 pages for the physical copy. Amazon has been… awkward… with their restocking of it, but the store over on Friessen Press works beautifully! They print on demand, as well. That ensures that you will get the right version! I am still looking for a publishing agent, and that journey is hard and depressing. Yet, this is the path I chose, kind of. I only say “kind of” because, if you have listened to my PodCast I did on Taker Wide in the past, you know that art is less of a choice and more of necessity.

I’m pretty sure that I have mentioned this part before, but my wife and I moved back in with my parents last year. It’s going well! I will say that I haven’t seen many friends since we moved back here, but that isn’t a huge change since Burlington.

If you aren’t awkward with south-western Ontario, that’s less than an hour away. Unfortunately, it is a separate health system, so it’s a bitch to get everything reset as far as doctors go. We’re slowly figuring that out. In fact, today I have a place that I’m going to! Right on time, as well!

I have written the next ansP recently. The last one underperformed, but that is, in part, due to me not realizing what day is was being released. If you haven’t read it, go do so (please). If you have read it, what do you think of it? It was fun to write, but I don’t intend to do the same style anytime soon. If there is an interest, though, I will write another one.

We don’t have wheels any longer. We got rid of our car recently, because upkeep was too expensive. On that note, the Patreon is very close to $100, and I find that stupid exciting. It would make it possible to go to events and maybe do meet-ups in the future!

Write Everything.

I found myself in a bit of a jam the other day. I knew I had to write, but I couldn’t find a voice or tone to use. My topics all seemed petty, my vocabulary was dower, and everything seemed wrong. So: I just wrote anyway.

The result? I wrote a script. Not a good one, but it did loosen up areas of insight in my mind. It seemed to be the concept that was drowning my thoughts and not allowing me to continue to write different things.

I will admit: it’s loosely based on a real conversation I had with someone. It paints “me” in a rather pretentious light and her in a horribly arrogant one. I enjoy it, but also acknowledge that it’s very poor in quality. I will be releasing it in the new year under the anewsinPublishing banner because I don’t like to hold anything back.

That brings me to the idea I want to put out there. I am a firm believer in that whatever comes to mind should be written down. That includes if it’s bad. Just get thoughts out there. I find myself stuck on, what feels like, nothing for days on end. I have a document on my desktop full of half-stories that will probably never see the light of day. I just need to get them out, then my brain is no longer full of stupid and generic shit.

Oh! I should mention that it’s my birthday on the 12th! I will be posting my usual masterbatory BIRTHDAY message then vanish for the remainder of the year, like I always do. I’m not entirely sure if it’s going to go the same way that it has in the past, though. I have “foam” coming out on the first, which I am stoked on finally releasing to everyone. I also have a couple applications for things that I want to address as soon as any sort of result comes from them.

It’s starting to be Christmas season once again. Please, consider donating to my Patreon so I can afford to give my wife something nice and my pets food. Even a dollar means the world!

No.

I have been stewing over this topic for days. The idea that you can do anything if you try hard enough, you can make it. I hate this concept, and I want to fight it to the best of my ability. The wall I hit, however, is that I cannot dispute the necessity of trying regardless of end position. If you work hard, you will be compensated. If you do not work hard, you will be repremanded. To assume that it just takes time and elbow greas to make it somewhere can actually be both heartbreaking, and damaging to standing in the greater endevour climate.

I spent over 10 years in bands trying my hardest to make it. There was a constant climb upwards in the scene, do not misunderstand my points, but I always put out multiple times what I made. I offset any sort of financial downfall with jobs. I did music because I loved it and needed to do something creative. I never had any illusions that I could live off of it, though it was an end goal.

That unfortunate reality goes for any artistic doing. You can try, you can succeed, and you can fail. Sometimes, all three in the same week. To assume that you are going to make it big is dangerous. It does happen, but it does not more often. There are so many things at play when considering a career in the arts, and doing one thing is often not the path to go down. To assume that if you just write that one song that everyone will love and you’ll be fine is actually a safer bet than believing that your band will do gang busters.

Another way to look at it: I was a drummer. That means, that under copyright laws in Canada for a musical composition, I had rights to the recordings of my drums. If the primary song writers could rerecord my drums without my knowledge, they could have stripped me of any financial rights. Lucky for me, I played with collections of stand-up people who never even thought of doing things like that. Instead, we kept playing. Getting gigs whenever we could, going on short tours, recording albums out of our pockets, and not eating.

10 plus years of that. Now, three years writing. No money made, but a fuck-tonne put out. That’s part of why I opened up the Patreon. just $1 a month gets you a subscription. That means you get a list of your name on this site, plus you get ansP releases about a month before anyone else in a fancy PDF! Hell, if you donate $10 a month, you get the pleasure of knowing that I consider you a fantastic human being and I will love you for a very long time! Your name gets put on the list with a little note of FANTASTIC put beside it. Even if you cancel your donation, or lower it, that denotation NEVER goes away!