It's so hard to resume writing again after not doing it for so long. Everything in my mind, heart and soul is telling me to start again, to use my "talents," the resources and skills I have been blessed with to contribute to the conversation about the state of the world today.
I know I've said this before. Never mind. Doesn't matter that I've tried, and perhaps failed to stay committed to the project. What matters is that I pick up, try again. And if I drop out again? I will have to have faith that something I write will matter to someone, anyone, and then it will be worthwhile.
Not sure where I will go on this journey in 2017, not a physical journey, but a mental one. I hope it is with as much passion as Nina Simone.
The 2016 version of Festpac was such a beautiful testament to what makes live theatre so wonderful. The energy, commitment, and care for the "ensemble" that those involved put into it to make it happen was a thrill to experience. About two weeks before Festpac, we were told that it was too far from being ready, so it was to be cancelled. The actors, choreographers, and other backstage people (including myself) were very disappointed, to say the least. And with the advocacy of our musical director, Dr. Colleen Jennings, the agreement was that we could do a staged reading instead. In the background though, we told them to take it as far as they could in the time we had left. One of the actors, a very talented Joyce Torres, became the director. She was amazing as she pushed the actors forward. She only had a week as director. It was tough going, and even two rehearsals before our first performance, we weren't sure they would be ready. But when we had the dress rehearsal, it was clear that they were ready. We had three performances and they were very well-received. One of the best compliments was getting a wonderful hug from a delegate from the Tonga delegation, who saw the first performance. This was the first time Pulani was performed by adults in all the main roles. Most of the actors were experienced actors at the University of Guam, and they seemed to have lots of fun with the characters. Yes, there were a lot of shouldas (shoulda had costumes, shoulda had sets) but it was charming in its minimalist style. And the acting really took center stage. It had to. And it worked! So thank you all for your hard work and commitment. You came through with your talent, ntegrity, and pizzazz!
This past weekend, I saw as many of the films at the University of Guam Film Festival that I could manage. There's something about passion projects that is so contagious as far as creative urges go. In this creative phase of my life, I seem to be excavating those urges I had in the past. In this case, I had a stint exploring film in college. (Someday, I'll upload those films on youtube.)
This I seemed to have adopted into my lifestyle: a daily walk lasting about an hour, usually at the beach and a goal to capture an image for a daily Instagram post. As I wrote in a recent blog, this started out as a way to express gratitude. It sort of merged into metaphor captures as well. That is, most of the time, the grateful image is ALSO a metaphor for, I call it, a message from the Universe.
Though it's been a long time since I have been an active playwright in the Hawaii theater scene, I still got an invitation to participate in the One Minute Theatre Festival. Last year was the first time that it came to Hawaii, and it'll be back again this year.
This year, 2016, inspired, I decided to participate in the #365grateful project where you commit to taking a photograph of something you are grateful for every day of the year. At the same time, I had become interested in what Instagram was about, mainly through my daughter @hellodanz. So, Instagram became a way to do the 365grateful.
Because of my new passion for songwriting as my creative outlet, I followed this link provided by a writer/artist I follow - Austin Kleon, a New Yorker article on how songwriters are being shafted in the age of streaming. Another example of corporations doing what they can to get "theirs" at the expense of the creators that make it all possible. As I write this, I am enjoying Apple Music, taking advantage of a 4-month free trial. I enjoy it, but not 9.99 a month worth, and not after reading this article.
Definition of wormhole: A wormhole is a theoretical passage through space-time that could create shortcuts for long journeys across the universe. www.space.com/20881-wormholes.html
Internet wormholes are when you start out looking for one thing and then kind of randomly or intuitively follow links any which way. I found this that describes the experience:
So this is a thing: And here is a short description of my latest travel down an internet wormhole to illustrate my state of being right now.
I remember wanting to be a songwriter way back in my teens when thinking about what you want to be when you grow up. I have some old pamphlets from the 70s to prove that it was in my mind that long ago. The journey from then to now has been a story of straying from dreams to fulfillment.
For the past 2 Mondays at the Island Girl Power facility in Dededo, Guam, I have been teaching a creative writing class to the adult volunteers. The thrift store is closed on Mondays and reserved for training if it is available. I am used to having to work harder to get students to write. This class of about 10 adults is the best class ever.
Diane Aoki is a writer who explores other modes of creativity as her intuition leads her.
... a blog to make sense of the world through writing and acts of creativity, to reflect on and respond to the crazy world in which we live. Can beauty, creativity, compassion, and activism emerge from this tension?