Today is the amazing Mr. Steven Moffat’s 53rd birthday, and I meant to publish this about a week ago. But better late than never, right? Here is part two of my Veteran’s Day post. Happy birthday to my guru, and also a special birthday greetings to my former Towerlight editor in chief, Daniel Gross.
(Continued from “part uno“) Just recently, I got starry eyed when my dad told me about a video he saw about the United Nations meeting on women’s equality. The speaker for a new HeForShe campaign at the U.N. meeting was—get this—Hermione Granger herself, my girl Emma Watson. Dad told me she was shaking, nervous as hell and nearly looking as bad as me when I have a panic attack, but I’d be nervous too if I did that. However, she’s got more guts to say something like that to the cream of the crop leaders of the world.
She hides her nerves well. Respect.
I also get a little jealous when I hear success stories on some of my favorite writers, reading about them in Writer’s Digest magazine or online. When I read the Doctor Who Magazine article on the Anniversary Special international simulcast a year ago this month, I got goose bumps coming across the part in the article about a former and current cast and crew celebration at Buckingham Palace hosted by Sophie, the Countess of Wessex days before “Day of the Doctor” aired. The reason for this chill in my spine was this lavish royal party was on November 18, coincidentally the day the head writer of the show and my writing guru Steven Moffat celebrated his 52nd birthday.
Sorry, but a birthday party with Queen Elizabeth, and the Daleks invading Buckingham freaking Palace in London? There must have been some expensive cake and the best Earl Grey tea in the world there, and don’t get me started on gowns and tuxes. Can you say Hulk envy?
Even if I do get published, I don’t think I’ll get as close to celebrating my birthday in the midst of all that glamour. I’ll bet the same rushed feeling happened for J.K. Rowling when she too met the Queen, and the chances of that happening for me are anorexic slim. Still, I respect my guru, for he deserves that kind of recognition and to be celebrated.
Neil Gaiman, another celebrated book author and Doctor Who screenwriter, had a similar birthday celebration for his 50th, only not at a castle and everyone wore black top hats. In fact, the party took place in New Orleans, Louisiana and there was more than a surprise party… his beautiful fiancee… now wife… rock star Amanda Palmer surprised him with a hilarious and art themed wedding ceremony. (So damn lucky…) Quite recently, one of my friends from Towson University told me about a podcast Gaiman did on Chris Hardwick’s web site The Nerdist many moons ago. I got a chance to listen to a little of it, listening to this clip from that podcast with a video montage of movie scenes of characters sitting at their typewriters and computers, all writing to the most beautiful rendition of “La Vie En Rose” by Louis Armstrong. (I have a thing for jazz, and Satchmo is the king.)
In the YouTube clip, Gaiman talks to the comedian/ show host about the struggle of being a writer, the pulling teeth and hitting your head against the wall while writing, revising, and getting mountains of rejection letters while you revise, revise, and revise until your fingers break. He gives some amazing advice to writers breaking in, like me, on how to keep going, and the most phenomenal part of his speech is when he speaks about competition. Basically, he says that yes, there’s going to be some writer who will make it better than you, and he knows writers who are better than him, but in the end Gaiman knows that, “There is nobody who can write a Neil Gaiman story like I can.”
That’s poetry right there.
So if I had to wrap this up in a birthday box in a great big bow or whatever, I’d say this. My ex boyfriend from last year, who told me when we broke up that I should murder my dreams and become something I’ll never be in order to succeed or make money, I think he should just curl up in his little hermit crab cave and never come out to torment me again. I can’t help myself; I live for the written word and the power of words either on screen or in print, most of the time in print.
If this world is going the way it’s going with banning books from school and replacing them with tablets and electronics, I don’t care. You’ll have to pry my paperbacks and hardcovers from my stiff cold corpse grip to destroy the power of literature. Like my eleventh grade English teacher said in my high school literary magazine, lit happens. It’s what we do, and we breathe and eat this stuff every day.
It’s been two months since my depressing little post where I nearly ended my future, which around the same time I quit writing for Shockwave Magazine. Back then, I had convinced myself I had no future and I was better off dead. But in the fashion of Val Kilmer’s Chris Knight in Real Genius, “In the midst of my preparations for hari kari, it came to me. It is possible to synthesize excited bromide in an argon matrix… Put simply, in difference to you Kent, it’s like lazing a stick of dynamite.”
So I have to get even with my demons. It’s a moral imperative, and all they wanna do is STUDY!
With that in mind, no more stalling. Gallifrey Falls and The Author Stalls No More. I’m done with this crappy situation I’ve been in for three and a half years, I’m sick of going nowhere and only 26 years old, and I need this change to happen no matter how small.
This is it. I’m ready for battle. And as always, I’m marching in to my own song.
Stars, they make me wonder where you are
Stars, up on heaven’s boulevard
And if I know you at all
I know you’ve gone too far
So I can’t look at the stars
Happy 53rd birthday in advance to my guru and personal wonderful Wizard of Oz Mr. Moffat, happy belated birthday to the star-studded writing master Neil Gaiman, and happy early 27th birthday to my soul sister Kerensa, who is obsessed with The Wizard of Oz and has seen the musical Wicked on Broadway. Only three more years until we start to hit our thirties, and when that happens, I hope I already have at least one book I’ve written from cover to cover on bookshelves.
And I want a big, fat 30 year celebration when that does happen and I do turn 30 years old. It better be a surprise, (and Kerensa, you have to be there, no excuses!) and there should be at least chocolate and buttercream cake, champagne, and dancing. Dancing to only the good music, please, I refuse to celebrate my 30th birthday at some hypocritical superficial night club, or worse, sitting in my bedroom twiddling my thumbs while everyone I know is busy with life.
Though I had a little bit of a rough time this Halloween when I returned after a few years’ absence, Club Orpheus is nice. Science fiction conventions and steampunk balls are nice too.
Oh, and almost forgot, very happy birthday to our friend in karaoke crime, Tornado, for his birthday was today, November 11. I saved you a third song I wanted to sing, but it was too beautiful to live.