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Category Archives: The Unreachables

Luck and Fairy Tales

The Luckiest Fairy Tale

The Luckiest Unlucky Man Alive is Signed: To Megan- The next J.K. Rowling. Bill Goss
The Freedom Fairy Tale is Signed- To Megan: I was impressed by your confidence and spunk! You’ll go places! John Rossi

 

You may not know this, but I’m a server. I work in a tiny little town at a Pizza Hut not too far off the interstate. In some ways, I wish I could say that I’m not like other servers, that I love it when I see customers come in no matter what time it is… but I can’t say that. While I love my job, and I very rarely dread seeing customers in our doorway, at 9:15 pm on a night we close at 10 and when I finish I have to drive 45 minutes back to college? Let’s just say I was nearly done, and I was so ready to get out of there that seeing two gentlemen trot right in and grab two seats at a table before I could even say hello had me huffing and puffing in the back of my head all while pasting on a server-smile.

Now, as I said before, we’re not too far off the interstate, and a lot of families and other travelers will come in for a sit down meal that still isn’t too long of a wait, so I’ve met a few people here and there- Russians, Scots-women, Californians, and a Michiganite once. So, when these two gentlemen started asking me about souvenirs and travel stops, I didn’t expect too much of it. It turned out that they were from Florida and were on their way to see one of the gentlemen’s sons who was about to become a Navy pilot.

Well, since I’m self-published, and it’s kind of difficult to get myself out past Arkansas, having a job where I get to meet people from out of state helps me out. Usually I sign a copy and give it to them in order to promote myself out of state. I’ve become great at giving myself a chance by moving from questions like “So how’s your day?” to “What are you majoring in?” to “Oh so you like to write?” It’s that final question that gives me the chance to introduce the fact that I’m a published author.

Unfortunately, though, this past Monday was not that way. I didn’t have any copies of my book. I don’t have business cards yet. My usual signing pen had gone missing. The world was against me, but I was determined that I had to somehow sell myself as a legit author. So, instead of doing my usual act of beating around the bush, I just walked up to the men and said, “Gentlemen, I have a favor to ask of you.”

And here they tentatively said okay, to which I asked (now I realize the stupidity of this question), “You know anyone back in Florida who likes to read?” They said yes, and so I started to tell them all about my book, how I would really appreciate it if they’d just tell someone about it, and how I appreciated them listening to me to begin with. With that, I had to go grab their pizza for them. When I came back, one of the guys was gone, and I assumed he’d gone out to smoke or something. When he came back in, he was holding a couple things in his hand and asked to borrow my pen.

Despite the fact that I was using it, I agreed, and I am more glad that I did than I can explain. It turns out, as you have probably guessed from that picture up there, that they were authors, and they were so impressed by my “spunk” and confidence that they had decided that they’d each give me a copy of their book, signed. Dr. John Rossi, author of The Freedom Fairy Tale, and Mr. Bill Goss, author of The Luckiest Unlucky Man Alive, gave me more happiness that night than anything. The odds of that happening might be slim, and I may have begun their visit to Pizza Hut as miserable as could be, but I ended up gaining an experience I’ll cherish forever. Where Mr. Goss may be the luckiest unlucky man, that night, I was the luckiest girl in the whole of my little town.

Just remember- Life is like a box of chocolates. You never know what you’re going to get.

Sometimes It Hurts…

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The pain in being shy does not lie in the shy tendencies. It lives in the darker place that no one sees, in the want to be like the rest of the crowd around you, the want to be friendly without a fear of what could happen, immediately ready for engaging with the person or people you have to meet and realizing that, no matter how much you might want it, it’s just beyond your reach.

This is just something that came to me today, and though I am thinking of trying to write a piece to go around it in a story, it struck me how unutterably true it is. I don’t know that you see it here. Can you? Whether you can or can not, though, does not really negate the fact that I am, and have been since around the age of seven or eight, shy to the point of terror. Where some say they are shy, they are really just not great with meeting new people, or they don’t really want more people in their life.

For me, it is completely different. I sit cloaked in a social phobia. I am terrible at communication. Crowds… no. A new person in general? Kill me. You probably don’t believe me, though, so let me interest you in a little fact. I can count, on one hand no less, the friends I actually spent time with that I had before a year ago. Can you guess how many? Three. And to take it a step farther, none of those three were my friend at the same time as another. I could only deal with one apparently. Another instance? I spent a year at college. In order to avoid the cafeteria because I did not have a friend to go with and could not imagine without a painful sort of terror braving the crowd on my own, I spent seven days in my room alone surviving on three packs of peanut butter crackers and tap water.

I wish I was joking. I am getting there, though, and with the help of some wonderful people, I might someday make it to being able to deal with the fear on my own. As of right now, though, I am stuck in a sand pit that, when in the company of close friends, I can walk freely in and have a good time. In the presence of anyone new, be it one person or one hundred, turns into quicksand. The terror makes my throat tighten painfully and I imagine I can’t get enough air. My hands  go clammy, I wrap my arms around my torso and hold myself, I hide in baggy hoodies, I don’t make eye contact, don’t smile, though I try my best to hide my internal misery, and I certainly don’t speak.

So often people believe that people in my own situation don’t try to get past it, that they do it, in the end, to themselves. Well, if you ever meet me and get the chance to get past my terror, you’ll see that I am nothing but friendly, loving, caring. To be angry hurts me nearly as much as being shy. I will do anything for someone. And I am trying to get past it. I know I love it when someone notices my shirt or my hair, something. And to try to give other people that same feeling of a little pride in themselves, I am attempting to conquer my fear of people by forcing myself to compliment them when I notice something nice about them. Not only is it forcing me to engage with new people, but it is noncommittal and makes people feel good about themselves.

Sometimes it hurts… but I’ve found that pushing through the pain is, at some level, possible with the right friends there to help.

Dreaming a Dream of Coffeehouses

I’ve told you all that this is my author blog, and perhaps it is in a way, but I think, for the most part, this might be instead my blog of dreams. Since I dream of being a successful author, my place as an author fits in here but only partially. Dreams span far and wide for me, born a dreamer after nine months of growing, and so I guess this is, in a way, my medium for getting them all out, just like in my writing.

The reason I even bring this up is because I am, inevitably as this is a major dream of mine, back to thinking of the coffeehouse I’d create if I had the money and the experience to do it. There are Starbucks far and wide, yes. There are ritzy coffee joints in big cities, in well-to-do areas, and even small towns. I want to create something different, though.

Don’t we all?

When you walk in somewhere, do you immediately think of how to adjust the atmosphere, how it could be set up differently, how it feels? I do. I pass by a building these days and I say, “That could be perfectly renovated into a beautiful little coffee shop!” or I look into a business already being ran and decide if I like the layout or the chairs or the menus or even the uniforms. I see paint swatches in stores, and I start to search for what exact shade would create a warm, not too dark, and always homey feel, what would accent that nicely?

But, as most of you are aware, I’m 18, and what you don’t know is I tend to try to be logical.

Starting your own business is a terrifying thing rife with struggles and let-downs, stress and long hours. At 18, in college, is not a time to even begin to think I’m ready for that, and with the business sense only slightly better than that of a goldfish, I couldn’t even begin right now. In fact, not too long ago, I gave this dream up as one of my Unreachables, something I’d forever struggle for yet never actually try to reach out and grab.

That’s the thing, though.

Ever since I gave this dream up for nonsense, illogical nonsense, everything around me has been about living your dreams. People will comment how it’s amazing I have a book out there and published at 18, YouTube videos about school procrastination end on some note about living your dreams while you still can and before all you have left is the “What if?” I’ll go to a class, and the teachers are talking about it.

So, I think I’m supposed to live my dreams.

No, no, no, guys and girls, women and men. I am not saying I’m going to run out, try to get a place right this second, grab a place, renovate it, set it all up, buy the equipment, and decorate it all to start my business now. Goodness, no, but I am taking steps to make it happen.

I’m going to take a Small Business Management course, take a few extra business classes, and really work on making myself business savvy as much as I possibly can. I have a business minor already, and I am doing what I can to achieve these new goals I’ve set for myself.

So, if you’re like me, and you’re sitting and wondering about a dream, but you’re writing it off as just another silly notion, this is what I have to say:

All those teachers, your parents, your friends, the vloggers you watch on YouTube, and everyone else around you are right! When you get older, when you’re lying there with nothing but memories, it’s a lot better to say you tried and failed than to wonder what would have happened. If you think you can’t do it, don’t get discouraged. I never thought I could publish a book, and that’s done. I never thought I’d be able to work towards owning my own coffeehouse, but I am.

So, go out there and do what you’ve got to do- unless it’s vile and mean or horrid to other people and will make them cry. That’s not nice. Please don’t intentionally make people cry.

Well, that’s all for now. Have fun living, dreaming, and living the dream!

The Clack of Typewriter Keys

It’s true. That picture you see up there isn’t a pretty picture I pulled off the internet.

It’s my typewriter.

I put this post in the “The Unreachables” category. You’re probably wondering why if I do actually have one. I’ve always wanted an old typewriter. The clack of the keys and the work you have to put in to write with one somehow feels more… real for me as a writer. It feels like action. It feels like satisfaction. The issue is, I never expected to end up with one- especially not a working one. So, it became one of those dreams, like my own coffeehouse, that I thought I’d always just want and never have.

Well, I was wrong. So, one of the unreachables has been reached, and I think people need to know that.

The best part, really, is that I got it from this adorable little place called What’s Yer Fancy? and as my boyfriend was purchasing it for me- determined to fulfill another dream for me- the lady who owns the shop started telling us about the little boy who sold her the typewriter.

He’s only 8 or 9, and he brings her amazing little finds all the time. She said all of the stuff he ever brings in sells in days. Before I could say anything, she smiled and informed us that he puts the money into a savings account for his college education.

He’s eight or nine, she wasn’t exactly sure which, and he’s already saving for college. That’s certainly saving early. The thing is, when I thought of him putting all that money away, I wondered if that, too, was one of his unreachables. What if he thought he’d never make it to college? He dreamed of getting a higher education in this world of high school drop-outs, perhaps.

Whatever it is, I love that I found another dream come true, and I may just be funding this little boy’s dream come true, if only just a little bit.

I’m beyond looking forward to getting a new ribbon for it and cleaning up the few sticking keys. Soon, I’ll be clacking away. My dreams just keep coming true one by one, who would have known?

That’s all for this Thursday, but I’ll probably be seeing you all again soon.

Keep on living your dreams. Even if they seem distant, they might just be right in front of your nose.

Satisfaction Guaranteed – Only Not Really

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It’s technically Thursday here in my little Arkansas town, so this could possibly be my day’s blog, but you might end up with two today. We’ll have to see how hectic my day is first.

I’m sitting in my bed right now, wrapped up in a blanket and wishing I could sleep as I scroll through blog after blog. I find that I’ve been struck again with a desperate wish that I could draw. My art is limited to very small confines, and even that usually isn’t very good. It’s only recently that I’ve mastered proportional stick figures.

Thinking this, though, I realize that I should probably be satisfied. I mean, I have a talent. I was born to write, was born to smoosh tons of words together into something visually appealing and produce many copies of it for the world. Or, at least I believe that’s my reason for being here, and a few strangers here and there have pushed that idea into my head more firmly with amazing reviews on my book. Some people don’t have that. They’re wanderers, people unsure of what exactly, if anything, they’re good at. So, surely I should be pleased that I know and am achieving my dream.

Only not really.

I’ve been around so many people in my life. Friends of mine are artists, masters at math, science whiz-kids, history buffs, computer geniuses. You name it, I’ve probably come in contact with them. That’s just how it seems to go with me. I surround myself with people who dream as much as possible and who try to achieve those dreams to the best of their ability. The thing is, though, they’re not satisfied. My artistic friends wish they could remember dates, my science-oriented friends hate that they can’t create unknown worlds, my math friends wish they could draw.

So much for satisfaction.

And I’m just the same. I wish I had the artistic ability to match my writing. Because I can see it so vividly, it’d help me to write my story even more if I could draw it all out first. I want to be able to create my own covers with my own art rather than my photography. I mean, I have a legitimate reason, but it seems I’m a bit of a one-trick pony. Writing is where I excel. Art is what I follow with envy. The rest is just a little bit of me.

Perhaps it’s because it’s the one thing I can’t even say I have a basic knowledge of, I’m not sure. All I know is that, though I spend hours practicing, my fingers and pencil fail me in a way they rarely do when I sit down to write. So, maybe I should stick to that. With that at least I know what I’m doing, where I excel, what I need to work on, and I know that it’s where I’m meant to be.

So, maybe satisfaction isn’t guaranteed just because I have a talent, but I have it better than some, so I shall try to be less envious and more happy just to be what I am- 18 and writing.

Well, this is me off for now. Perhaps we’ll talk again later? I hope so. But, for now, have a great day!