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10/31/2014

The Good Fight. And Novel Update.

Hi there. You know what? I've spent many years pushing through ridiculous things, as we all have, I know, but sometimes it can be a real mind fuck; however, there's something I've learned. No matter how I feel, whether it be down or panicky or whatnot, I have learned to keep on putting one foot in front of the other, to trudge right along, regardless. I truck right fucking through it. I can feel vulnerable or feel like a horror show is going on inside, and I show up anyway. That's what I do now. And when you do that, when you are transparent and real in front of others, it shows them that they can push through their pains as well, and it shows them that they don't have to do it alone. That is one of the beauties that lies within the nature of giving and receiving.

Ask my family. I am one stubborn fighter. So, whether tired, anxious, depressed, happy, overly happy, whatever, there I am, putting one foot in front of the other, trying my ass off to do the next right thing. There is a great deal of muscle in that and although this morning I still feel vulnerable, there is a certain strength I feel deep inside, and I am so grateful to have lived through like 20 lives and can now feel the effect of this hard work.

Grateful to have a clean heart and mind, grateful to have family, friends, a spiritual adviser, a safe place to live, a loving cat, these hands that work and type, hot water for my bath, food in the fridge, legs that take me on my walks, the three deer that visited me last night, and that I'm not afraid to be alone and stand on my own. The good fight.

So with all that said, I am on page 150 of revision seven of my next book, THE HOUSE OF ANCHOR. After this, I'm gonna print the sucker out, and the next revision will be done on paper. I like reading it that way...old school. I am so incredibly excited about this book. The story is so intricate and so much fun. I believe it will send the reader on a fantastic journey of mind and heart. Like life, yo.

Back to bed. Love.
C.A. MacConnell

10/30/2014

Toolbox

Hey there beautiful people! So I'm well into revision seven on my next book, THE HOUSE OF ANCHOR. Now I'm smoothing things out, making it sing. So excited. This book is in the 400 page range, and it is incredibly crafty, as well as intricate, but it also moves like a speed demon. This was my goal -- to combine a highly literary work with a fiercely grabbing story and characters that are unforgettable. Also, the dialogue is artistic in itself, and it's funny as hell sometimes. This book fucking rocks, to put it bluntly, ha. Coming soon. In the meantime, have you checked out GRIFFIN FARM? I keep getting awesome feedback and people even stop me on the street to tell me they couldn't put it down, so if you are looking for some intense fiction, there you go. Would be thrilled to have new readers. Weeeelllll...sheeit, time to job hunt and hammer out some more on the Anchor. Hope you're smiling today. It's freezing in here. Brrr.... Here's a poem for you too. My warmup. Much love and peace to you. Always. C.A.

Toolbox

Gripping a ruler, he checked her edges,
measuring her body skin to bone.
Erasing the lines, he disappeared
in a swift, scissor-leg cut, no more
than a slingshot. Picture the horrible
clean, the terrible quiet -- no,
no noise in her white bedroom.

Dad’s cream car was locked
in the shop, and the mechanic smoked
Winstons, nursing the bad brakes.
She drilled holes in the walls,
wondering who was buried inside,
still alive, and then, like a rubber band,
she snapped back. Enter the overcoat,

one with full pockets, the creative nuts,
the bolts and screws, and she learned
that most words were hammers --
the rusty, ancient, old school kind,
lost and found, memory letters
that punched out the top of the mind,
pounding within her like loose nails

settling deep into plaster. The landlord
flew to Costa Rica, and if she slipped
into her overalls, grabbing her toolbox,
hurrying down into the basement,
she could test the heat of one
and maybe find out that it's working
just fine.

C.A. MacConnell

10/28/2014

A Striking Gentleman


video
Here's my essay for the day.
A day in the life of me and a striking gentleman.
Not sure of this handsome fellow's name, but I'm sure I'll think of something.
Hope to see him again soon.
<3 <3 <3

C.A. MacConnell

10/27/2014

Exposure Therapy + Time + Argo the Dog = Love

Well hey everybody. Smile. Here's the first story I wrote about Argo the dog. Over time, I've written volumes about this dog on Facebook and such, and I admit that I often connect more with animals than I do with people; however, at some point when I was madly "Argo posting," after reading these writings, one friend assumed that I was trying to recover from being depressed or alone or whatnot, and she wrote this page-long deal on my FB that was so serious, so long, and so full of concern. I guess she thought that the dog writings/pictures were a huge metaphor for my desperate search to find the right mate, I dunno.

Well when I read her comment, I started cracking up, and I thought to myself, Dude, I just like the dog. And in this case, that's totally true. I love connecting with animals. But honestly, I have no fucking room to talk when it comes to reading into things. I mean, I'm the queen of making a mountain out of a molehill. But it got me to thinking about people who know me from my writing versus people who know me in real life. Of course it crosses over, yeah, and the writing is part of me, but I suppose in real life I have more of a sense of humor about it all and sometimes this may not come across on the page. I probably come across as intense as shit more often than not. But then again, some days I am. Take that for what you will, ha.

Which brings me to this: I love this dog. Actually, visiting Argo has been an actual, real journey in overcoming huge fears, so I guess there is indeed some depth to it, but it's been more of an inside job, not a journey to find something or someone outside of me. Now, here's what has happened over the course of about 1 1/2 years:













Amazing. Now he's one of my best friends. Sometimes I have to take a look back in order to see the progress that I've made, and if there is an absolute, symbolic point to all of this, that's the one I meant to hammer home. We are all so hard on ourselves, aye. Just for today, let us celebrate the battles we have pushed through so far. Celebrate you. Celebrate the person you are right here, right now, in this moment. I will if you will, because I know that what matters are not these ridiculous outside covers that we have. What matters is how I feel in relation to the people, animals, and world around me. What matters is how I feel in relation to my heart and your heart.

You see, I am alive.
I stand in good relation to all that is beautiful.
I stand in good relation to you.
You see, I am alive.

--from a Kiowa song

Weh nah kam ska kah neh pwah
"I would die for you."
-- Shawnee

These sayings pop into my head a lot, along with other randomness, like the Latin version of "My Bonnie Lies Over the Ocean," which I learned on a 7th grade Latin retreat. Yes, I know the whole song, and I sang it on my walk yesterday. Lord. This is what we're dealing with, folks.

I would love to take Argo for a walk. I think he wants to go with me. I love this dog.
C.A. MacConnell

10/26/2014

Revision Six Complete!

Hells yeah! Woooooohooooo! I've been knocking out the end of revision six of my next novel, THE HOUSE OF ANCHOR, since about four this morning. In this revision, I made three huge changes, so it was a real headache, and I've been avoiding it, but now, the story's all there, and it's gelling like you wouldn't believe, and it's just right, and now all I have to do is fine tune and smooth it out. The fun part! I'm so excited. I love this part. Now I can be poetic and shit. My favorite part of the process.

Writing a novel is extremely difficult (putting it mildly), but I'm getting better and better at it. I have a feeling about this one. I know when something's good, and this is damn good. F'n fast-paced genius, in my world, ha. No lie, that's how I feel. I'm stoked.

Can't wait for you all to read it.

Now I desperately need to go back to bed! And the rest of the day, playtime:

Photo by me, Girl, Saylor Park, OH

Happy,
C.A. MacConnell

Untitled



Untitled

Everything seems
divided.
Deep fire,
raging blue --
I speak
to the furious
morning sun,
wanting to find
right versus wrong,
or the terrible,
cirrus maybe
scratched across
one newborn sky.
Answers rest
within this moment’s
true light,
in between
the infrared
and the ultraviolet.
Each vein shade
bleeds into the next,
making it whole,
making a speed
that is no less
than divine.
Deep fire,
raging blue --
we speak
to this furious
morning
sun. Everything
seems.

C.A. MacConnell

10/25/2014

F'n Rad Update: Neck Triangle Takeover

A while back, I posted about the Neck Triangle and how it's taking over the world. At the time when I wrote the piece, the Neck Triangle was appearing on sweatshirts everywhere. Well, just the other day, as I had smartly predicted, I saw it for the first time on a tank top. I don't know about you, but I'm getting quite concerned about the way the Neck Triangle is spreading across the nation and the world. And let me reiterate this question:  what the fuck is that thing?


There is no real purpose to it. And when did it start appearing on clothes everywhere? Slowly, it's making its way through clothing everywhere -- all stores, all brands, all sizes, all styles. First, just sweatshirts. Then tank tops. Next, the (more than likely mobster) people in charge will figure out how to attach some material to bras, men's undershirts, and bathing suits, I'm sure. I can see it now -- men in Speedos, with a long string running from their crotch to their necks, ending at the Neck Triangle. Women in bikinis with material attached that ends in the Neck Triangle. There's a conspiracy going on here, and actually, I'm probably at risk for simply writing this blog, but I wanted to make sure I warned everyone, because it's spreading, and it's ruthless. I see it sneaking its way into the public, daily taking over.

Be afraid. Watch your clothes. The Neck Triangle is everywhere. Sneaky, maddening, baffling, and absolutely pointless, it is popping up on the nation's clothes as I write.

What the fuck is that thing?
C.A. MacConnell

10/24/2014

F'n Rad Job Interview

Manager:  Hi, nice to meet you. So, according to your resume, you have really done a lot of different things. Wow, and you have won many awards. What have you been doing lately?

Potential Employee:  Nice to meet you too! I love, love, love it here!

Manager:  Well, okay, but what have you been doing job-wise?

P.E.:  Man, did you know there's a fortune teller scale in the bathroom?! That is so rad. And a punching bag down the hall. I would totally fit in here, just sayin'. I love this!

Manager:  I'm glad. So this is a copywriting position, and we received your samples. You know you only had to do one of the samples?

P.E.:  Oh, I know, but I got really into it, so I did all three.

Manager:  Yes, yours was different than any of the others, that's for sure. How long did that take you?

P.E.:  Oh, I just whipped the sucker right out.

Manager:  You know this is a gourmet & specialty grocery store? What kind of experience or interest do you have with food and foodies?

P.E.:  Hm. I had an omelet this morning. It was delicious.

Manager:  I see, so you like to keep things simple? Well, what do you know about this store?

P.E.:  Nothing at all, actually. I've never even been here. But this office is so awesome!

Manager:  Oh, well, thank you. So you do have a lot of writing experience.

P.E.:  Oh, yeah, I can write anything, any genre. Been at it forever. I just wrote a book. It's on Amazon. You should check it out. I have a card on it in here somewhere.

Manager:  That's nice, but do you have copywriting experience?

P.E.:  Oh, yeah, I wrote a lot of it for an ad company years ago, but I don't think they even exist anymore. Not sure. It's on my res. You ever heard of that company? You think they're still around?

Manager:  No, never heard of them. So do you have an actual sample of your copywriting?

P.E.:  Well, I was digging around earlier, but I couldn't find a damn thing. I did a gazillion of those ads, but then I deleted them all because they were dry as hell. I mean, they wanted dry, so that's what I gave them.

Manager:  I see. So what do you know about food?

P.E.:  Not sure. All I eat is frozen meals. Occasional Snickers and Bear Naked bars. Sometimes Pop Tarts. Not much else can be trusted.

Manager:  But you want to work at a gourmet grocery?

P.E.:  Oh, yeah. I can write anything. Did you know there's a Danielle Steele novel out in the hallway? When I was waiting for you, I started reading it. It was about a 6' tall, blonde model who was really pretty, and just when you came to get me, she was about to meet up with a very pretty brunette who was either going to be her sister or best friend, not sure. I think she was going to be the sister, because usually the best friend character isn't pretty.

Manager:  Okay, well, I think we've got it all covered here. Wait, one more thing. What kind of environment do you like? Where do you see yourself?

P.E.:  Well, I like to run around and stay busy. Like, even if you wanted me to go downstairs and straighten out the apples, I'd get right on it.  Seriously, I can write anything, any subject, no lie. But I suppose I should have lied when you asked me if I've ever shopped here before. Most people would probably make something up I guess.

Manager:  Well, at least you're honest.

P.E.:  Thanks! Yeah, people tell me that all the time.

Manager (standing up, reaching out a hand):  Well, I'll show you down.

P.E. (shaking hand):  Cool, I totally dig that elevator. Did I tell you I used to be an elevator operator?

Manager:  Interesting.

P.E. (stepping on elevator):  That job was fun as hell. I liked that environment as well. Up, down, up, down. Well, nice to meet you.

Manager:  You too. Now you can wander around the store and check out our wonderful food selection.

P.E.:  Oh yeah, fascinating! Hey, have you checked the weather today? I can't stand being cooped up inside like this. I can't wait to get out of this shirt and head out for a power walk.

Manager raises brows as elevator door closes.

10/23/2014

Tat Ten.



What can I say...I thought about a hawk, but by the time the artist got there, I thought it looked dumbassssss, so I'm really glad he was late. So I just put this word there. Fierce. Me, the fierce warrior. :) Like a tiger, a lion, a beast, okay, you get the drift. Anyway, I love it. I love all of you fierce warriors. And there is one in particular I really love in a very, very, creepy way. I'm joking. Not creepy, just dreamy. My heart hurts, you know. Sheeit, at some point I may grow up, but I'm still working on that area. Fuck it. Hopefully, one day I will find a match that is at a similar "swingset" mentality. Ha.Gotta laugh at your badass self. Seeya.

I hope that you have a beautiful night. Be transparent.

Love, C.A.

Wet Hooky

Rain, go ahead. Come
down
softly.
Go ahead. Change your mind
and spit.
I have no say
in the way the sky
leaks.
Soak me heavy.
Send bullet-hail. Weigh
my brown hair down.
Darken all the light things –
everything alive,
below,
exposed.
Darken this too-soon autumn
night. Whatever the season,
I'll still open
my mouth, letting my bottom lip
hang loose, like an old horse.
I'll still let you touch
my tongue.
I'll still wait for you
to slide over me, clean or polluted.
Sometimes, even fresh rain
tastes nasty.
I see your wet, wide work.
I see you water
this and that ground.
Some drops dance
for a penny-living.
Some drops
wear
tap
shoes --
sporadic, uncertain,
pausing for thunder,
no more than damp,
distant fingertips
pressing dirty rooftops down,
making gutter music.
Some hammer it home,
turning surface skin
sexy-sweaty,
and the people hours become
all about the weather.
Go ahead. Come down
softly. Go ahead, change
your mind.
You are employed by the sky
I've found, and up there,
that’s where I’ll look for you --
in each, full moment
when the clouds spread.
You pour,
I sip.
We play hooky in the lightning.

C.A. MacConnell

Blackbirds.

Painter, your hands moved
to make me.
Seattle raindrops
landed on reaching fingertips,
dying there.
The weather came slowly,
stopping and starting
through the strange trees.
Blackbirds
sifted through leaves
and the muck of dreams.
You made them scatter,
a good use for coin.
We watched them almost fall --
sharp, dark shapes
that flew only for you.
We watched the wing songs
blur to one shape,
and then all were sleeping --
each on a chosen limb.
Later, we broke in,
remember.
Painter, with your hands,
still faces came alive.
All over the walls,
they hovered,
frozen in silent looks
of smiles and screams.
And I knew that outside,
those trees must still be
melting into wings.
You were so clean.

C.A. MacConnell

10/22/2014

Man Jeans

A while back, I bought a pair of ancient Wranglers in the men's section somewhere. Can't remember where I scored these, and I think they cost around 5 bucks. Now, these jeans had some interesting characteristics. First off, they were so big, I could slide them on and off without unbuttoning them. Also, they were so worn out, they were paper thin, and in the wash/wear, you could see the actual body outline of the man who used to wear them, which was incredibly creepy, and I figured the former owner was probably dead. And because they were way too long, I had to turn up the bottom and make a cuff that was about 1 foot high. And most importantly, they made me look like I had a penis, and you could actually see the outline of the bulge where the former owner's penis used to be. What's even more interesting is this:  I wore them every chance I got.

Why? You might ask. Well, they were so comfortable, it was like wearing Kleenex. I'm not big on jeans in general, and I hate skinny jeans, so when I do wear them, I prefer the ridiculously loose kind. Although some people like to draw attention to the ass when wearing jeans, I prefer to wear jeans that make it look like my ass is sliding off into no man's land. Of course, sometimes people would comment on these jeans. But most of the time, people would just stare at them. When I say stare, I mean THE BIG STARE -- this is when people "secretly" look at you when they think you're not paying attention, and they let that long gaze run all the way from your shoulders to your ankles while they're intently checking out your goods. I'm not sure what THE BIG STARE meant. I've decided it either meant that people thought that I needed some serious help, or they were secretly jealous that I had the balls to wear those horrible pants. And indeed, as aforementioned, they gave me balls.

After many years of wearing these Wranglers, I decided to take a break from the "ass-slide" pants. I thought I might try to fit in a little. So I finally threw the suckers out, much to the relief of some of the well-meaning women in my life. I tried out some skinny pants, some "boyfriend" pants, you know, all those ridiculous styles. Well, here's what happened:  when I wore these new pants, the whole time I had them on, I was focused on my pants. Someone could be talking to me, or I could be writing, and yet still, I thought about my pants, how they felt funny, how I felt stiff. I thought I might adapt, but no matter what, I felt uncomfortable, annoyed, and preoccupied. I threw them all out except for one pair that I keep for special "blending" occasions, ha.

Now, I do have plenty of jeans from my horse riding days, but they're all loose and wide at the bottom. They call them "boot cut" for a reason. When you ride, you wear boots. But recently, I was doing some grocery shopping, and I happened to glance at the boys' clearance section. And there they were...a pair of boys' jeans on sale for like 5 bucks. I tried them on right there in the aisle, slipping them on top of my Adidas track pants. Perfect. They were so loose I could slide them on without unbuttoning them. They made me look fat as hell, and they made my ass look like a pancake. They were so long I had to cuff them about a foot. And yes, they made me look like I had a penis. Not as clearly as the Wranglers, but it was still there. Perfect! I bought them, and I was grinning the whole way out of that store.

As an experiment, I've been wearing them the past few days, just to see if anyone will say anything. So far, no one has said anything out loud, but I've definitely gotten THE BIG STARE multiple times from men and women all around me -- at the grocery, the food mart, everywhere. It's hilarious. And you know what? When I wear them, I feel comfortable and chillin'. I feel like me. At 40, I think I'm hitting the rebellious stage that most people hit back in grade school. Well, I mean, the nineties were one big freak show for me, but I had so much going on, i.e., I was fucked up, that when I was a kid, I never really had the chance to find myself, so to speak. So I guess I'm doing some of that investigating now.

It is a weird phase I'm in. Last night, I thought to myself, after years of therapy and self help groups and the like, I think that half of my problem is really much more simple. Catholic schools, making the grades, pulling the knee socks up, keeping quiet -- I'm sick of it. I have always been intensely creative, but I've had to find it and express it all on my own, and I've definitely had to live it out with nearly all of the encouragement coming from the inside. Living in this conservative city with a conservative family, I feel like I've never had the chance to really be me. I mean, I do have all the tats and whatnot, but I want more creatively. I want to wear my man jeans and write about stars, skateboarders, musicians, and lovers. And make a damn good living at it. I want more.

See, here's a simple example. I want a new tattoo. A hawk. They seem to visit me a lot these days, and they make me feel fierce. And I want that tattoo on my arm, in the most visible spot possible, so that I can look at it and be reminded to stay fierce. I'd also like purple highlights in my hair. Things of that nature. Maybe these are just visuals, but to me, it's sort of a rite of passage. I brought these ideas up to some people close to me, and I was met with a huge NO. This happens a lot. My whole life, I've been fighting against this NO. Who wouldn't go "crazy"? Normally, I wouldn't use that word, as I hate all of the stigma attached to it, but in this instance, I mean it ironically; that is, who's the "crazy" one here? All I want is to be myself.

Seriously, after all this trudging and whatnot, I just want to be me. Why do people give a fuck if I get a tattoo at 40? I'm 40. Why do people give a fuck if I wear jeans that make me look like an old man? Who cares. If it makes me happy, and I can be me, I can be of best service to others. I don't judge others when they plan a fancy wedding. Whatever, that's you. But I may show up in my man jeans, because I can't afford that kind of dress. That's me. That's how I see it. Sometimes, I feel like I'm in a cage for sure, like I want to pack my book bag and take off and not look back. Now, I've done this before, but at the time, I was pretty addicted to everything. It is different now. I am focused, determined, and I have years of hard work under my man jeans. Yo, I am fierce.

Let's see how it all unfolds. I may sound restless and discontent, but actually, I'm grinning a little. Why? Because although I may be consistently met with THE BIG STARE and the NO, I have a little secret, a "crazy" spirit inside me that says, YES.

C.A. MacConnell

10/21/2014

Special Delivery

The bedroom wall is peeling. Take me.
Lead me to my new employment.

I'd make an expert paintbrush or vacuum.
Take me to a strange residence -- siding,

stone, or brick -- where even the new house
lives and breathes on a fresh street. I hear

knocking, my special delivery. Pick me up
in a rusty truck. Pack my words in back.

Me, bare or made up. I know we both see
the same moon. Take me to a new quiet,

a new thunder. Pick me up in the smallest
plane. We'll shoot across, making a sky exit,

barely sliding through the slightly cracked
door of lightning. See the room full of boxes.

The family swallows my dreams for dinner.
Take me. Bring me any life but the high rise.

C.A. MacConnell