I’ve never been very good about blogging. I prefer speaking to writing in this case, which is very odd considering I’m an author, but I truly had a good reason to not have blogged in a while. The last 9 months have been the most up and down rollercoaster of my life, but it led to a very happy place and the writing of what I think might be my best piece of work yet, The Shadow of Oz–a dark twisted retelling of the Wizard of Oz, but I’m getting ahead of myself. How did I get it written? Well…
It all started when the girl who I made vows to spend the rest of my life with decided to leave me for a guy she met at CHURCH. AT CHURCH! That is possibly the greatest ‘what the fuck, god?’ moment I have ever had. She eventually told me how she knew we were never meant to be together, which broke my heart, not because of her, but because of the three beautiful children she had that knew me as their only father. I tried to work with her, even went out of my way doing things making sure that my daughters (and they ARE my daughters, I don’t care what DNA says) were taken care of. Those three were my angels. I rocked them when they were sick. I kissed booboos. I was there for nightmares, wetting the bed, and just all around needing loved and cuddled. I got to be a daddy and I loved it, but because said ex-girlfriend kept breaking her promises to me, it led to her pulling all contact from the children from me and there’s nothing legally I can do, because being an ex-boyfriend gives me zero rights, no matter how the scene was set and how we lived. Needless to say, it shattered me.
I’m going to open up here and maybe give away too much information, but I have suffered and fought with depression since I was 8 years old. I am a survivor of multiple suicide attempts. It was a monster I thought I had beaten, but having my daughters taken from me brought me back to the darkness. I was falling to pieces, considering options I shouldn’t have and making attempts to get my last affairs in order. Then, fate stepped in.
I had a date with a girl where I got stood up. It seemed about right for the way life was treating me lately. So I called an ex-girlfriend of mine, thinking she’d get a good laugh out of it. Well, come to find out I was only about an hour away from seeing her. I hadn’t seen her in nearly six years. This was the best decision of my life. I met her for lunch and the minute I saw her smile, I was hooked. Just like that. Like the old fights didn’t matter, the break up didn’t matter, all I wanted was to see her again. So, we decided to give it one more try.
Okay, so how does Oz work into this? Well, Oz was meant to be part of a box set. I signed on to doing it somewhere between the “banging a dude at church” and “you can never see your kids again.” Made it nearly impossible to think, but I wanted in this box set. I wanted to take that chance and go for being a best seller.
The muse started working again, and Dorothy’s demented story began to come to me… and that’s when I had the craziest 24 hours of my life. While visiting my beloved, her roommate decides “it’s time to die,” and proceeds to try and hang himself with a belt. Yea, what the fuck indeed. Police get called. Police chase crazy man through woods. Man gets away. By the time this finally finished, it was 4 am. What a night! But it wasn’t over yet. I then get a call from a long-time friend who got himself so sleep deprived from talking to a girl he met online that he fell for, that he had a full snap from reality and threatened to murder me. Not even like, “I’m gonna kill you,” but “I am not afraid of prison, I will put you in the ground for reals kill you/kill you.” Yea, blindsided.
So I end up moving in with my Faith into a room that you could stretch across and touch either wall. It was tight, it was cramped, and it forced us to move in together well before we were ready to do it. All this, while a deadline breathed down my neck.
Luckily, found an apartment that we fell in love with and was out of there in about a month. Now, for 3 weeks we were sleeping on couches and loveseats b/c that’s all we had, but I kept plugging along at the book what I could. When I finally got a proper work space to operate in, I had a month to write a novel more or less. It took me to the very last minute, but i finished.
But there’s even more to this story than that. You see, “Shadow” is a name that is very dear to me. One of my best friends was named Jessi, and my nickname for her was Shadow (which she spelled Shadeau). We helped each other through so much. I know I talked her down off a lege a dozen times and she talked me down at least that or more. I literally would not be here without her, and a few years ago she ended her life. She was the first dreamer I truly loved. We both wanted to be writers. She never got to see me accomplish my dream. The Shadow of Oz is dedicated to Jessi, and, in many ways, Dorothy IS Jessi. I couldn’t stand the thought of her being gone. Now she can live forever in the pages of a book. I love you, Jess. Wacka-chicka sauce, bitch!
And as for my beloved, Faith, I was alway meant to be with you. Glad we finally realized it. I love you so much. Thank you for your support.
If you’d like to check out “The Shadow of Oz,” you can do it here: viewbook.at/shadowofoz
It’s got dragons, witches, necromancy, revenge, murder, madness… everything Jess would have loved.
Keep your chins up, people. heads on high!