With the soft-launch of the Patreon page, the Estate, out of the way and as I pour more focus into my trilogy of short stories with NaNoWriMo in progress, I feel that I am in new form. I’m trying to change habits and double down on what I love to do. Allocating time and forcing myself to put in the hours even if I don’t feel “inspired”. I’ve multiple outlets for my creativity so sometimes focus is fleeting.
Some site updates:
-The inner workings of the site have been cleaned up, there were a few unused pages that needed deleted.
-The main menu now includes the “Collaborations” page with links to each of the collaborative myself or Neuron Dreamtime have contributed to.
-Site is connected to Google Analytics, so I’m just now learning this, it’s a little overwhelming. It’s something I should have done a while ago.
In moving forward, I plan to start a mailing list as an author in the future once the book is closer to being finished. I should probably do the same for ND sometime soon. Just trying to grow the audience with inter-connective art and gain those “1000 true fans”.
All of this as I try to zero in on what works for a small multimedia art business and what doesn’t. For a few months now I’ve been regularly tuning into and exploring the backlog of the podcast “The Creative Penn with Joanna Penn”. Her show about being an indie author and the journeys of independent publishing and story writing and creativity is absolutely what I was looking for when I went searching for podcast with information rich content and a motivational push. She has suggested amazing non-fiction for motivation and talks proper establishment of brand and goes in depth into the marketing behind the movement as an independent. I cannot praise her enough in helping to light the fire under my ass that will light my way into the future, the fire I so desperately wish to ignite. Not to be famous, but to come into one’s own, so to speak.
My hope is that those reading this, and that follow what I do, are at least somewhat inspire to pursue the things that bring them joy and explore the possibilities. Everyone is a conduit of creativity.
“As the gates open to a roundabout encircling a great fountain, strange songs can be heard from an indiscernible location. The skeletal forms of the architecture appear bare but are interestingly not. The deeper you look into it you begin to recognize fractal forms engaged in a subtle tachykinesic movement. Every surface appears to be alive.”
It’s spent months in the making and incubation but now it’s at a mature enough state to be open to the public. The subscription is based on per creation, or “Exhibit” (i.e. a paid post). I went with that method instead of a monthly subscription because I doubt my ability to keep up with my own expectations. This way I can *attempt* to get a monthly schedule going to the point I feel confident enough to switch the method to recurring monthly subscription. Patreon is still relatively new to me and it will take some time to learn the ropes in building a community of supporters.
When creating art, even with an established plan, I lose myself in the possibilities and struggle with self doubt. When I look at a blank canvas I see the infinite. Miraculously, once an idea is set upon, infinity splinters into a new infinity. The painting, or the song, or the story can go in any direction. But as time is traveled and space is identified, what becomes is a cross section of many infinities, captured or frozen in time. That’s the fun part and what I revel in. And where I get lost. But I eventually find my way back. Decisions are made. Paint is brushed, notes are played and words are written.
Thirteen Palm Trees Podcast Productions have released the schedule for the next few episodes of the Wasted Local Talent podcast including the Neuron Dreamtime episode and seeing that it has been the customary length of time between posts here on the mother site, I’m back again with another peek into the labyrinthine Dreamtime neural network.
So mark your calendars, or don’t, I’ll remind you, November 29th is the day you’ll hear wise cracks, pop culture references, and may even notice how awkward I am during interviews. What I mean is that I’ve always been on the introvert side of the spectrum and the shyness tends to increase once the red record button is pressed. This sometimes results in bouts of internal panic causing me to forget what I want to say, get all mixed up and repeat things, say something dumb or downplay something. I will often let others steer the conversation and on some occasions I’ll clam up almost completely into a spiral of self imposed embarrassment. Of course this is not always the case for every situation as it’s different with people I know well or see often. I’m always looking for ways to change this about myself like doing interviews, taking on a more person-to-person responsibility at the money-job, and working myself up to do open mic standup.
So to prepare for the interview I assumed there would be a list of questions based on what was available online about myself and ND, so I thought about what standard interview questions would be; the origin, the influences, the tools, the philosophy, etc. I went so far as writing notes about ND and coming up with answers to anticipated questions. Upon meeting the hosts, when I said I was nervous, I was reassured that “it’s just a conversation” and to my surprise it turned out to be just that. But of course I was keenly aware that we were recording and instantly forgotten all the preparations I made.
Thankfully, Daniel and Jed were friendly and funny. Taking the pressure off of me by giving each other a hard time and cracking jokes in a way only friends can. I eventually felt very welcome in their studio, like I was a friend bonding over a shared sense of humor. In spite of my own anxieties, it didn’t feel like I was expected to act a certain way to fit their mold. It was our first time meeting each other and while I honestly don’t think they really looked too deeply into what ND has done or listened to many songs, I feel their intentions were genuine and well placed. They truly do wish to use their platform to help shed light on the talent out here in WV, no matter how popular or unknown. But because it may be too much to expect to familiarize themselves with ND when there is so much out there and relatively unknown to the point of near invisibility I can’t hold that against them. Alas, I am disappointed in myself for not being able to delve more into Neuron Dreamtime, into the origin, influences, tools and the philosophy.
Now it may just be a trait of being an artist but I usually find myself picking apart a piece of work. My own worst critic as the cliche goes. It’s the same when painting. Perfect is unreachable, unattainable but it’s also strangely imaginable. And I’m usually looking back on how things went and how they could have been better. An interview is something I’m not used to anyway. When making music or painting there is time to step away and collect oneself, even this blog post has taken me almost two weeks to write, to edit and reword as to better express myself. With an interview its limited and for the most part a one shot go with little editing. So I think back to all the missed opportunities to say more, to elaborate upon what ND is to me. Meanwhile there is always this site with its various pages and links for anyone wishing to peruse and discover what Neuron Dreamtime is. If anything, the podcast will bring a little more local traffic to this site and people can let the content speak for itself.
So as always, I tend to laugh at myself and accept that it’s just part of the human condition to be awkward. Life is so damn absurd sometimes you simply can’t take it seriously. You’ve got to stop and laugh often. Laughing and making people laugh is something I love to do as much as painting and recording sounds that resonate and express. I love to do these things and share them but there is usually hesitance on my part due to how I humbly view what I create, it’s not the greatest but it’s something. Maybe with clever editing the podcast will be coherent to me and I won’t sound so amateurish. Or maybe this is all just a case of me over thinking. It happens. In any case its sure to be entertainingly silly while doling out laughs.
I normally feel I don’t deserve any kind of spotlight other than the one I shine myself into my little corner upon the things I make. I just go at my own pace, do my own “thing” and I am aware that one persons “thing” can’t be appealing to everyone. I know this because I can see my minuscule, but totally inspiring, fan-base by way of statistics from this website, Facebook, Bandcamp, Youtube, and Soundcloud. I can see how many people read this, listen to what and click links. Honestly it surprised me that they accepted my application to be on the show. I almost didn’t seize the opportunity to apply in the first place because of my modesty surrounding ND. In some lights I feel it’s not worthy. It’s a testament to their willingness to help local talent be seen by bringing me on to inevitably bomb but be funny while doing it.
Self deprecating thoughts aside, I do feel that true success is relative and not measured by an objective abacus of wealth and influence. You set your goals, you achieve them, no matter how large or small they seem to other people. Find what gives your heart a beat, then dance to that beat. Then try to drown out your inner heckler.
These guys at Thirteen Palm Trees are just like that. They love doing what they’re doing no matter how odd it may be to others and they want to share their light with others. Overall it was a good experience, a positive one, for overcoming my shyness and stage fright and showed me that the podcast format is something I could get into and hope to do so in the future. Although I failed to elaborate on what ND is (sometimes even I don’t know) there is always this website and the future opportunities. I hope to be this eloquent next time I have the pleasure of sitting down, chatting and laughing with the crew at Wasted Local Talent about music, pop culture, and joking about Male pattern baldness and life.
Will visit again.
PS: You can find Thirteen Palm Trees and all their episodes on all major Podcast streaming providers. Below is the aforementioned schedule and be sure to check out their other podcasts: “Video Game Mythos”, “D&D, Kinda”, and “Gurus of Gaming”
Two months later I find myself struggling to promote the new album any further. The roadmap laid out up to the release served it’s purpose and I was able to execute it to the T with a punctuality never before seen from myself. But I was so focused on just getting it done, making the steps to the final destination, that I thought very little of what I’d do when I got there, other than a reminder FB post a few weeks or so later. This has always been the case with Dreamtime’s post-release promotion. But I feel, now more than before, that this project I’ve spent so much time on is worthy of the follow up support I’ve neglected to provide. Neglected for reasons as simple as focus shifts to painting, reading, making a paycheck, and generally living life.
It’s an ocean of media, entertainment, music and film out there and I’m trying to build a floating island of my own. A place in the clouds that people may stumble upon and maybe find something they like, that enhances their lives in the way that art does. Or if it’s not their cup of tea then maybe, at least, they recognize the DIY ethic and be inspired to follow their own visions and dreams as well.
So what is next? Promotion of course, starting with this very blog then leading into paid promotion on social media and local promotion via podcasts and correspondence with others, regardless of genre.
There is always something creatively cooking up in my head and sometimes it’s hard to make it out of my head with the idea(s) in tow but when it is achieved and the physicality begins to take shape I pour my heart into it. It can be exhausting but it’s always worth it. This bout of post-release promotion will be no different.