The Next Big Thing Series

What is the working title of the book?

                What I’m most proud of is the ongoing ‘Beach Sloth’ Blog. I like how versatile the Blog can be. In a book the words are there without change, addition, or elaboration. That can be extremely scary to make a definitive statement. By blogging I’ve noticed that I can clarify some things, elaborate on them, and better figure out what works best for me.

                The working title of the finished book (at 53,000 words) was ‘Tripping’. I like the title. I’ll keep it. Anybody who is interested in ‘Tripping’ should encourage me. I doubt I’ll be sharing the rough draft yet. The draft is just too rough. The Blog is simple. The Blog gets feedback. I can always add to the Blog. I can’t add to a book. I edit too much for me to ever be happy with a book. Who knows though maybe people will like it? 

Where did the idea come from for the book?

                The Blog stemmed from me hanging out on the beach. I was completely directionless in life. I have more of a purpose now both with the Blog and with life in general. Alt Lit is a huge part of the Blog. I want to support those who don’t receive much attention. I want to make life easier for people. I like helping people.

                For the full book the idea came from traveling and realizing a part of my life was over. It took me a long time to realize that. I wanted to constantly go back in time, to relive my life and maybe handle it better. I know that’s impossible now. I wish I had figured it out earlier. 

What genre does your book fall under?

                My Blog falls under the ‘support’ genre. Maybe it could be self-help? Reading my Blog should help others feel better about their lives. There’s all this wonderful material being created, free of charge, and I want to bring attention to it. Alt Lit is a wonderful thing. More people keep on joining the community for a reason. With more writers there’s a greater diversity of interests, styles, and life experiences. To me that is really fantastic.

                The book would fall under ‘young adult’.  I heard there’s a whole section of the library called ‘young adult’. I want part of the ‘young adult’ pie. Or I could go for elderly due to the demographic shifts worldwide towards rapid aging. 

What actors would you choose to play the part of your characters in a movie rendition?

                My Blog might be hard to turn into a movie. I’m uncertain. I have no idea who would play me. I might do that. Why not? I guess if I was going to drop the anonymous thing it would be for a big old pile of money and Hollywood fame.

                The book lends itself fairly well to a movie. The movie would be really digressive I think. I wish I knew more about movies. I know what soundtrack I’d use. It would be a better soundtrack than ‘Garden State’. The soundtrack would be killer. I feel like actually releasing the soundtrack of the movie first. When I watch movies I watch them with subtitles and turn the volume off. ‘Broken Flowers’ is a good movie for that approach. If anybody watches ‘Broken Flowers’ watch it to June of 44’s album ‘Engine Takes to the Water’. It syncs up perfectly with the movie. 

What is the one sentence synopsis of your book?

                Beach Sloth is a Blog supporting others.

                The book is someone dealing with the inevitability of adulthood by going on a trip that makes little sense and has little purpose. 

How long did it take you to write the first draft of the manuscript?

                The Blog has taken me almost three years. I’m pretty happy with the manuscript.

                Summarizing or giving the book a specific period is a bit tricky. I wrote some of the scenes years ago (before the blog), trashed it, and kept on coming back to them. The book is a series of earlier drafts. Collecting them and polishing them enough so they’d make sense took a month to fully re-write and put together.

Who or what inspired you to write this book?

            The Blog was inspired by supporting others. People need support. Life is too hard.  

I wanted to have a bigger statement than the Blog. Few take blogging seriously. Books though seem to be taken ultra-seriously for reasons I can’t fathom. Yet I still wanted to have a book that I wrote and could perhaps take some pride in, hence ‘Tripping’. 

What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest?

                If anybody needs an introduction to Alt Lit I do a good job summarizing it. I try to keep things simple. My goal is to convey as clearly as possible what the work is trying to do. The purpose of my reviews is to be as simple as possible.

                For the book I feel if people are reaching their late twenties and feel completely doomed about what do with their life then my book might be able to help them. 

Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?

                The Blog is self-published. That will never change. I like having control over it. 

                I self-published ‘I want to YouTube down the Rivers of America’. I think if I have another book it will not be a chapbook but a full book. I want to have a publisher. 

 

My tagged writers for next Wednesday are:

Neon Glittery, Bianca Shipton, Peterbd, Lucy K Shaw, Stephen Michael McDowell


I AM TRYING TO DESTROY SOMETHING by Bianca Shipton


                Bianca Shipton shows life on Tumblr. The chapbook works more as a persona and less as a chapbook. Images add to the sense of personality. Placed in between poems of various lengths the images add to the general mood. Neither item could exist on its own. Geography comes up through these images. Everything comes together to create a specific sense of place. More than anything the images give a location for where the poems happen and why they happen. At times it becomes so completely relatable with the body imagery that it is difficult to believe that this is just Bianca’s life. Bianca Shipton’s ‘I AM TRYING TO DESTROY SOMETHING’ might as well be a chapbook about everyone’s experience. Little personal touches only increase this feeling. 

                Sickness keeps Bianca warm. What also keeps Bianca warm is her location in Australia. The land down under is usually fairly warm. Images of the sea indicate this as well. Living in Australia is having a perpetual summer. Bianca states as much with ‘everything contained by my skin is summer’. Sunscreen seeps into Bianca’s very pores, poring over every inch of her. Protected from the sun Bianca is free to go outside. Her destruction is limited to herself. That’s why she destroys an unripe watermelon, just for kicks. Poor watermelon had a family to support. Now the watermelon resides in Bianca’s stomach ready to be digested. 

                Weather is huge. Clouds linger over the chapbook. Bianca introduces the weather. Including pictures to go alongside the words makes the impact more forceful. Her fence is destroyed. Now all sorts of crazed critters can come on into her life. Critters come rushing in ready to destroy things like planted rows of tomatoes, lettuce, and various veggies. While Bianca mourns the death of a beloved stalk of celery her mother speaks. Apparently her mother rues the fact she never taught her daughter affection. Obviously Bianca’s mother hasn’t read her daughter’s work. 

                Thunder and lightning very very frightening enter through the images. Bianca lets the pictures speak for themselves. Re-blogged excerpts state she wants to hide somewhere. Shaking hands make that difficult. Video games offer the same miserable weather. An MP3 plays. Someone needs to hold her hand. Nobody does. Holding dead words close she considers the words a form of a friends, a memory of a person gone. 

                Quiet moments are cherished. Bianca hears the tap next door. That’s a quiet house or quiet apartment. Little sounds mean big things. Hearing the sounds of people next door reminds one that there is a life outside of them. In a strange way the sounds of a house or apartment building remind that life goes on even as loneliness lingers. Conquering loneliness may be hard. Other times loneliness can be a good thing helping one feel completely calm. Pictures of jellyfish confirm that Bianca will be alone. Sometimes it is hard to be alone with one’s problems since no one can quite understand it. Jellyfish lack problems. In fact jellyfish have the ability to live forever, at least turritopsis nutricula which reforms again and again. If reincarnation exists turritopsis nutricula have mastered it. 

                Memories return to Bianca. She remembers friends. Perhaps if sex ended up being a friendly thing more people would be into it. Already it has a great appeal. Maybe the reason people have sex is to feel wanted. There is a lot of sadness running throughout countless minds. Misery with company is better than lonely misery. It can be hard to conquer depression alone. A friend can make it tolerable or even better. 

                Death comes up by the end. Bianca mentions living a long productive life by dancing on other people’s graves. Sure dancing is a fine way to pass the time but by doing it in a graveyard this shows death who is boss. Her stomach shivers for it is worried about things. Once more Bianca returns to the watermelon and its intense juice. Finally Bianca ends with telling the reader to keep on going. And thus it ends with the hope that the reader follows her sound advice.

I AM TRYING TO DESTROY SOMETHING by Bianca Shipton

                Bianca Shipton shows life on Tumblr. The chapbook works more as a persona and less as a chapbook. Images add to the sense of personality. Placed in between poems of various lengths the images add to the general mood. Neither item could exist on its own. Geography comes up through these images. Everything comes together to create a specific sense of place. More than anything the images give a location for where the poems happen and why they happen. At times it becomes so completely relatable with the body imagery that it is difficult to believe that this is just Bianca’s life. Bianca Shipton’s ‘I AM TRYING TO DESTROY SOMETHING’ might as well be a chapbook about everyone’s experience. Little personal touches only increase this feeling. 

                Sickness keeps Bianca warm. What also keeps Bianca warm is her location in Australia. The land down under is usually fairly warm. Images of the sea indicate this as well. Living in Australia is having a perpetual summer. Bianca states as much with ‘everything contained by my skin is summer’. Sunscreen seeps into Bianca’s very pores, poring over every inch of her. Protected from the sun Bianca is free to go outside. Her destruction is limited to herself. That’s why she destroys an unripe watermelon, just for kicks. Poor watermelon had a family to support. Now the watermelon resides in Bianca’s stomach ready to be digested. 

                Weather is huge. Clouds linger over the chapbook. Bianca introduces the weather. Including pictures to go alongside the words makes the impact more forceful. Her fence is destroyed. Now all sorts of crazed critters can come on into her life. Critters come rushing in ready to destroy things like planted rows of tomatoes, lettuce, and various veggies. While Bianca mourns the death of a beloved stalk of celery her mother speaks. Apparently her mother rues the fact she never taught her daughter affection. Obviously Bianca’s mother hasn’t read her daughter’s work. 

                Thunder and lightning very very frightening enter through the images. Bianca lets the pictures speak for themselves. Re-blogged excerpts state she wants to hide somewhere. Shaking hands make that difficult. Video games offer the same miserable weather. An MP3 plays. Someone needs to hold her hand. Nobody does. Holding dead words close she considers the words a form of a friends, a memory of a person gone. 

                Quiet moments are cherished. Bianca hears the tap next door. That’s a quiet house or quiet apartment. Little sounds mean big things. Hearing the sounds of people next door reminds one that there is a life outside of them. In a strange way the sounds of a house or apartment building remind that life goes on even as loneliness lingers. Conquering loneliness may be hard. Other times loneliness can be a good thing helping one feel completely calm. Pictures of jellyfish confirm that Bianca will be alone. Sometimes it is hard to be alone with one’s problems since no one can quite understand it. Jellyfish lack problems. In fact jellyfish have the ability to live forever, at least turritopsis nutricula which reforms again and again. If reincarnation exists turritopsis nutricula have mastered it. 

                Memories return to Bianca. She remembers friends. Perhaps if sex ended up being a friendly thing more people would be into it. Already it has a great appeal. Maybe the reason people have sex is to feel wanted. There is a lot of sadness running throughout countless minds. Misery with company is better than lonely misery. It can be hard to conquer depression alone. A friend can make it tolerable or even better. 

                Death comes up by the end. Bianca mentions living a long productive life by dancing on other people’s graves. Sure dancing is a fine way to pass the time but by doing it in a graveyard this shows death who is boss. Her stomach shivers for it is worried about things. Once more Bianca returns to the watermelon and its intense juice. Finally Bianca ends with telling the reader to keep on going. And thus it ends with the hope that the reader follows her sound advice.