This Is My Symphony

January 24, 2009

The book which I’m currently working on is called “Symphony.” It’s a fantasy — not all dragons and elves, but it’s pretty detailed. It opens up the world so that it’s in “layers,” or different dimensions, each with their own customs and whatnot which, in turn, affect the characters. Speaking of which, the main characters are Aiden D’esparis, Kana Marianne, Amaya Kumori and Seth. (Seth’s lack of a last name is on-purpose, of course. I didn’t get lazy. Really. >.>;)
I chose the name “Symphony” because a symphony is made up of people — different people, who play instruments which don’t sound the same, yet… they can still come together, despite those differences, and tell a beautiful tale. And it’s the characters who make a story worth reading, right? I’m focusing a lot on characteral developement for this novel — giving myself a chance to brush up on my dialouge-writing skills and whatnot.
As for the characters, I guess I should talk about them! x3

symphony

(yes, I know. I have MAD tablet skillz.)

First up is… Aiden. Aiden, Aiden, Aiden. xDD He’s incredibly unconventional. I’m REALLY proud of him, because his personality isn’t suitable for a “hero” at all. He’s got a short fuse, glares at everyone and everything, is horribly violent and, in a nutshell, comes across as a complete dick. But since I want my characters to be as real as possible, he obviously has several different sides to him. As the story progresses, he tends to get a bit… dorky, so to speak — and he jokes around a fair bit. He’s actually very emotional, and if you read between the lines of his dialouge and actions, you can pretty much see “The Real Aiden.” His backstory is that he’s “The Chosen One” of his dimension — but something goes terribly wrong, and his powers don’t seem to activate. This, of course, was a circumstance beyond his control… yet, people of his dimension freak out and eventually he developes a reputation as a “demon,” who was trying to lead the world to ruin. After living under this pressure for a long time, Aiden finally snapped. He denies being “The Chosen” altogether now, and was able to travel to Pandora’s dimension. He doesn’t plan on turning back and going home, either — to him, “Home” doesn’t exist.
Kana is an innocent, sweet, yet cursed girl. She was born with the curse of misfortune, meaning that she has horrible luck and everyone who comes into close contact with her ends up getting injured — or negatively affected in some way. At first, only small things happened — like her friend’s bracelet snapping — but as Kana grew, so did the intensity of the curse. The event which pushed her off the edge was when the guy she was seeing, whose name I’m going to change, got into an “accident.” Whether he survived or not is something which is revealed later on in the book — Kana refuses to talk about it. Kana is pretty spacey, and, like I said, innocent — but I’ve planned out a few scenes where she shocks everyone with her knowledge on… erm… “certain subjects.”
I decided against Kana’s curse affecting her physical self. Kana’s the type of girl who cherishes her friends and loved ones more than herself — if the curse affected her, then it wouldn’t…hurt her as much, so to speak. It’s a bit complicated, but it makes sense to me. xD; It’s like… she loves them, but she’s afraid of being with them because she doesn’t want them to get hurt. I think them getting hurt will, in turn, hurt Kana even more — especially since she would know that it was her fault.
Amaya is…well, I haven’t planned her out as much. She’s the hardcore member of the group. She’s tall, lean, and kickass. (The small, chibi-esque sketch doesn’t do the character design which I’ve conjured up in my head justice). She’s an assassin from her village and takes direct orders from the Chief of it. Amaya is also unconventional, she does what she wants when she wants to do it… she’s straight-forward and doesn’t take any b.s. from anyone. I think Amaya is based on the person I want to be, actually. xD; Her backstory is still in construction — she joins Kana, Aiden and Seth a bit later on though.
Seth is my love. He was the first member of the group who I ever wrote about. I remember it so clearly — during Winter Break, I was listening to Castle On The Hill from the Edward Scissorhands soundtrack. I sat down and just typed up a scene which fit the melody — Seth’s “prelude”, the opening scene. Before I knew it, ideas were flowing. Danny Elfman’s work inspired me to name my novel Symphony.
Anyway. Seth is basically a mystery. Technically, he’s dead. The “antagonist” of the story killed him right as the story began — however, Pandora was able to revive him. The process itself is a lot more complicated, and it’ll make more sense when you actually sit down and read the actual thing… but yeah. Seth has a strange, naive character. He’s very unpredictable and tends to worry a lot — very caring, and he tries his best. xD; His backstory and purpose for being IN the story are both really complex, I think a bit too complex — I’ll have to narrow it down. But, yes. Seth’s soul is living in a medium, which is his “corpse” — except, it’s not a corpse, since it’s actually functioning as a proper body. It’s not perfect, though (JEEZ, SO MANY CONTRADICTIONS) and sometimes it randomly shuts down and he goes into a “doll-like state.” On the other hand, he can also go into a “supreme state”, where he is pretty much unstoppable and can destroy anything in his way. o.o;
The story focuses on 2 “sides”. One is that of Pandora, the eccentric magician who’s character is WAY too much fun to write, and the other is of the “antagonist” who currently lacks a name. xD; Both are after a box with tons of power — its possesion runs in Pandora’s family (i.e: Pandora’s Box). This box has the power to do all sorts of things which fit into the story and various events in it.
Pandora, herself, is a LITTLE bit like Yuuko from xxxHolic, but the two of them are actually very different. Pandora is less serious, for one — though she has her moments. She’s bombastic and silly, yet she’s one of the most powerful characters to be introduced in the entire storyline.
Honestly, I wanted to write something which could be made into a video game. I KNOW, SHOOT ME NOW. xD But I wanted it to be a good story, too — since good games always have very interesting storylines. The characters feel like my children, which is sort of strange (since all of them are older than me, ahaha), but still cool. =] As of today, the book is 23 pages long on Verdana, size 9. I took a break from writing because of exams — but I plan on resuming soon, though. I’m hoping I can tell this story to the very end! My goal is to make it as fun and casual to read as possible — whilst still making it a deep, interesting and EPIC story, which one could analyze if they wanted to. Wish me luck, I’ll definitely need it. o.o;

Hehe.
– Jamie xx

She Lives!

January 24, 2009

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The sudden absence of posts over here has been pretty sad, I’ll admit. I have drafts saved, apparently — but they’re all over the place, uninteresting, and pretty pointless. In the space between my last post and this one, a lot has happened — whilst, simultaneously, not much has.
(I’ve realized that I say “simultaneously” too much, for one.)
Exams ended today — or, rather, yesterday, seeing as it’s 12 a.m as I type this. This year, midterms went incredibly well. I’m not sure about the grades which I recieved — though I think I did well — I’m talking more about how I handled myself this time around.
Last year was crazy. Or at least that’s how I remember it. I guess you could say I over-prepared myself — hence the reason why you could sit me down, right at this moment, in a room with an Ancient World History midterm… and I’d prolly do it better than most of the freshmen. xD (Though studying back in SJC was worse. Ugggh, don’t remind me.) Anyway, my main New Year’s Resolution was to be less of a workaholic this year — to enjoy things more. I wasn’t sure before, but now I’m absolutely positive: I’m a LOT less stressed out than I was back in 2008.
I sat down in the 2008 examination rooms feeling like the walking undead. This year, I felt hyper, clean (don’t ask) and well-rested. I sat there and did my very best. Sure, I was nervous, but hey, you can’t let that hold you back. The times before the exam are harder than DOING the actual exam — and probably even harder than getting results. Now that the tests are over, I can feel the knowledge which I bashed into my brains slowly relax and spread out — hopefully not to be forgotten anytime soon. (At least not until I’m done with 10th grade.)
Hm, imagine that — being in 11th grade. I can’t even think about it; life will be so different. I can only hope that I’m more of who I want to be; not the same girl I am now. I have my fair share of growing up to do.
Either way, I want to end this post on a light note. Robin and I compiled this list of emotions/actions which take place before, during and after an exam.

Jamie & Robin’s “10 Stages of Grief Brought On By Exams”~
1. Denial
2. Depression
3. Anger
4. Bargaining
5. Delusionary State
6. Acceptance
7. Murderous Tendencies
8. Fetal Position
9. Giving Up
10. Eating A Sandwich

We were quite proud to display this across the Chemistry room’s whiteboard — right next to Mr. Koester’s (Chemistry Teacher) small note — “I ♥ Ionic Net Charge!”. The Chemistry test was probably the only really hard one — other than that, I think I managed to do well!
As a treat, some friends and I may go out tomorrow. Either way, I plan on dressing up, heading over to the mall and buying a new game. My sights are set on Persona 4 for the PS2. We’ll see how it goes!

Until next time,
Jamie xx

1oo Things About Jamie

January 7, 2009

I did this list last year, but I can’t seem to find it right now. My friend, Robin ♥, did it, so I figured I’d hop on the bandwagon and do it, too. :D
(Plus, right now, I feel sick to my stomach. This should help me take my mind off things?)

1oo Things About Jamie
1. I feel like a flamingo in a crowd of pigeons
2. I consider myself open-minded, but I cannot stand conservatives
3. My body is in Trinidad, but my heart is in Japan
4. The reason why I like Art so much is because I hate reality.
5. I don’t dress to impress — I dress to kill
6. I can trip over air
7. I want to dye my hair electric blue but I can’t find/afford/get my hands on any dye
8. Sometimes I want to feign my own death, just to see those who would care
9. I am not nearly as quiet a person as people tend to make me out to be
10. I wish I was born on October 13th, purely because that date sounds cool
11. Spazzy people are the best
12. I hate chick flicks with an almighty passion
13. I love the colour pink, but red is my favourite colour
14. Imitation may be the sincerest form of flattery, but it annoys the hell out of me.
15. I’ve ALWAYS wanted to walk up to a stranger, hold out my hand for a handshake, and say, “Meet your newest obsession.”
16. I’m happy that I have a few close friends who I can trust with anything — they don’t expect me to act a certain way, and I can go to them for anything. I think that’s way better than being popular.
17. Though I do wish I had more friends.
18. I want to meet April, Megan and Resa in person someday.
19. One time, in the mall, I told a random man that I was (still am) a virgin and he eyed me strangely. I don’t know, I was feeling random. Looking back on it, it would’ve been really, really creepy if he actually replied.
20. I am terrified of hippos. I’ve been so ever since I saw a documentary on them. One ripped a guy to shreds, ate one dude’s head, and tore off another one’s leg.
21. I hate sloths. (The animal.) Edward and Robin are fully aware of this, yet BOTH spammed MSN chat windows with pictures of them last year. >__>
22. I don’t give a damn if it’s “thrilling” — I will NEVER zipline. Ever.
23. I secretly love how people look when they’re smoking.
24. I just got a tablet. How the hell do I use it?
25. TOKIDOKI IS THE BEST THING EVER. I cherish everything which I have from this line.
26. Headaches and migraines seem to accompany me wherever I go
27. I love cats xD;
28. I hate how the majority of these points start with “I”.
29. The reason why I use emoticons is because when I don’t, I’m afraid I might come off as bitchy, mean, or stuck up.
30. I hate being formal. For my sister’s wedding, I wore my black converse shoes underneath my stuffy dress. No one noticed.
31. Usually, I say I like being short, but I really wish I were 6ft tall.
32. I hate boobs and I really don’t want my chest to grow any more than it has. D: (..I am aware that this is rare for a teenaged girl. x3;)
55. Tim Burton is my main role model. I would marry him if he proposed to me.
56. The Ting Tings = the shizz.
57. Robin and I are going on a road-trip across the world. It has been dubbed as “The X-Perience: With No ‘E’, Because We’re Just So Bad Like That.”
58. On this trip, we want to befriend a gay man and/or a drag queen.
59. The reason why most of my recent stories have a same-sex couple in them is because if any of my works, for some strange reason, get published or become “big,” I want people to see that homosexuals aren’t different from heterosexuals.
60. I sometimes feel like I am 2 different people. Sometimes I know EXACTLY who I am, and at other times I haven’t the slightest idea.
61. The environment which I’m in really effects me.
62. I don’t like photographs or paintings which don’t tell a story.
63. I like taking pictures of myself, as vain as it may sound.
64. I sort of wish that I were paler.
65. Nausea is the worst thing ever. And right now, I am INCREDIBLY nauseaous.
66. I hate when people call me Jamie Lee (seriously; not in jest like my friends do sometimes)
67. I really want a lime green top hat with a neon blue bow.
68. Drop beats, not bombs.
69. I would be lying if I said that the number 69 doesn’t make me giggle.
70. I am paranoid when it comes to how people see me whilst simultaneously refusing to change myself for them. Yeah, a pretty deadly combination.
71. I idolize an IMVU developer known as Ange. He’s a huge inspiration to me, mainly because I know about him and his current situation, and therefore I know how strong he is. (Plus, he makes awesome stuff.)
72. I don’t like how people expect men to act one way and women to act another.
73. My favourite genres of music are Electronic, Alternative, Emo, Hardcore, Techno, Trance, Pop Punk, Punk, & jRock, though I listen to a little Pop/jPop.
74. I hate when people ask me who my favourite band is because I can never answer with just one
75. I also hate most “rebellious” teenagers who think they’re so hardcore. It’s so fake.
76. I wanna get married in a white or black kimono
77. I hate animal-print.
78. I don’t show people some of my art because I’m afraid they’ll misunderstand it and make me go to therapy.
79. Paramore has a way of hitting the nail right on the head.
80. I’m agnostic. No members of my family know this.
81. I LOVE the Lolcatz book which Robin bought me. Like, a lot.
82. When I’m an old woman, I want to live in an old mansion with my husband in some isolated area near a conservative town to scare the living hell out of residents.
83. I want a boy BJD so that I can make him pretty. Not sure why.
84. The phone just rang really loudly, totally out of the blue, and I let out the most girly scream ever. o_O
85. I’ve always wanted to send PostSecret something
86. I want to go to a rave later on in life; when I actually look like myself on the outside.
87. I wish that clouds were like…solid, because it’d be really fun to sit on one
88. I cannot listen to music when doing work or studying; I need to be in an environment where I can focus soley on my iPod.
89. That being said, when I listen to music in my bedroom, I tend to run around rampantly.
90. I can recall almost every single thing which I learnt in my Ancient World History class in 9th grade. Never will I forget what Cleisthenes did in 508 B.C, never will I forget the whole Rise of Nations ordeal which I oh-so-proudly explained to my friends last year before exams, never will I forget what a hoplite is, or who the Fathers of Medicine, History, etc, were. That’s one class which I really miss.
91. I want to cut down on the amount of meat I eat.
92. Dear homophobes, suck it. Love, Jamie.
93. I don’t like to start conversations on msn and I hate having people who I never talk to in my contacts list. I clean it out frequently.
94. I like Myspace more than Facebook.
95. Honestly, I worry a lot over whether or not I’ll ever get a boyfriend. But I don’t want to give the wrong guy the honour of being “Jamie’s First Love.”
96. I think unrequited love is one of the most painful things in this world.
97. I might have said this before, but I LOVE piercings and I am going to get my lip pierced once I graduate from high school, regardless of what anyone says.
98. When Alice In Wonderland comes out in 2010, Mai and I are totally going to cosplay as characters for the premier.
99. Sanrio and San-X = pure love
100. I think milk and spicy fried chicken make a perfect meal when put together.

I don’t really follow actors, actresses or celebrities. I’m pretty stupid when it comes to that sort of thing, which is pretty weird for a teenaged girl. But, I have to say, the one “celebrity” which I can, and always will, obsessively stalk look up to and devote every bit of my respect to is a director known as Tim Burton. To me, he isn’t just a director — the man is a mastermind; a genius which deserves recognition higher than any other man. He is an artist; his mind works in a way which is brilliantly difficult to understand. He is complex, surrounded in this aura of mystery.

It all started with The Nightmare Before Christmas. I’m aware that he didn’t direct it, but still — “Tim Burton’s The Nightmare Before Christmas.” The name just…stuck in my head. The songs were amazing; the characters (even Oogie Boogie ._.) were all loveable, and Sally was (and still is) one of the very few female leads who I actually do not regard as a complete and utter pansy (and LYDIA, can’t forget her). Not to mention, The Nightmare is what planted the seeds for my complete and utter obsession with stopmotion films. I recently downloaded Nightmare Revisited — a bunch of my favourite bands re-did all of the musical pieces in the original Nightmare Before Xmas, and whilst the original will always be my favourite, the remakes really do them justice. (Except for Jack’s Lament by The All-American Rejects. SERIOUSLY, WHY THE HELL DID THE LAME BAND GET THE BEST SONG IN THE FILM? Ugh. KoRn did “Kidnap The Sandy Claws” justice, and Marilyn Manson really and truly aced “This Is Halloween. :DD But I’m getting off-topic, so…xD)

Then came Edward Scissorhands. This is the film which blew me away with all its metaphorical content. It hit a very, very sore spot for me. In Caroline Thompson’s commentary, she described it as “a fable…a story that people don’t necessarily believe, but they understand…. [Edward Scissorhands] is about feeling like you don’t belong…about wanting to belong, about trying so hard to belong, yet you just can’t belong.” She hit the nail right on the head — given that heart-wrenchingly, nostalgic feeling which I experience everytime I watch it, overflowing with beautiful imagery, exquisite music… Edward Scissorhands had a huge impact on my life, in a way I can’t even put into words. “It expresses the feeling that your image and how people perceive you,” Burton said, “are at odds with what is inside you.”

(Yes. I look at his films’ commentaries. Sue me. I also have most of the soundtracks.)

Burton grew up in the suburbs — just like the town we see in Edward Scissorhands. Happy faces, cute little families, all of that. I think I can relate to him in how he must’ve felt. I’d describe it as feeling “like a flamingo in a crowd of pidgeons.” It may sound vain, but think about it. A flamingo in a crowd of pidgeons may stand out, but what makes you think that that’s a good thing? The pidgeons wouldn’t exactly acknowledge or appreciate the flamingo, the flamingo would hate the pidgeons — probably sometimes wishing that it, itself, were a pidgeon — and then it all just ends up being one big mess.

When talking about his teenaged years (regarding his love for horror films rather than going out in the sun and being another All-American Boy) Burton said: “I felt most monsters were basically misperceived — I thought that they usually had more heartfelt souls than the human characters around them.” I couldn’t have put it better myself — I’ve always felt that way — even before I knew of Burton’s works. As a child, I loved the Witch in Sleeping Beauty. Maleficent? I’m not sure I spelt that right. “She was just upset about not getting invited to the princess’ party,” I’d tell my mother. My mother would chuckle and pat me on the head, saying that I was a strange one. Never has someone honestly agreed with me. Many just say that they do — but I know they really don’t. Tim Burton saying that line alone — without even knowing how much of an impact it had on this silly girl — was enough to gain a lifetime of respect from me.

Next was Big Fish. The film itself beautifully blends reality and fantasy. It brings fiction to life without seeming pretentious or ignorant. Edward Bloom was able to live in his beautifully magical world — all the while, staying in reality. Amazing, profoundly amazing. The ending was THE BEST, and the characters were all so silly — each having their own little quirks.

I guess, in a nutshell, Tim Burton will always be my idol. I’ve always, always, ALWAYS wanted to meet him. Just to shake hands with him would be a great honour. He’s my idea of an artist — he is what I want to aspire to be. He can convey so much expression, so much emotion, in the simplist of scenes.

To put it simply:
He is a genius.