Waiting For Now

I am but one thought one day
from the next best day –
where a gasp and ahhh
define the day.

I am but one idea away
from my next personal triumph –
a place where I can relish
who I have become.

Suprising Virtues of the Curtsy @VerbaVitae

Imagine:  You’re a Diva of some Court – a Monarchy at the height of its Culture.  You’re being passed by the Monarch in Court…or a Knight in the corridor…in either case, the Curtsy is your best bet.

I wondered at the hidden virtues of the Curtsy recently.  It’s a term used on Twitter to denote acknowledgement and appreciation.  That one word, denoting so much.  So, no wonder that this Pillar of Language found me in the shower one night – only figuratively mind you – it had followed me after reading the Twitter Feed of a certain Diva of the Twitter Tree.  I got to thinking – why was the Curtsy ever invented, and why is it as it is, in action?  And, then I wondered whether there were any hidden lessons clinging to the petticoat of the 18th Century French dress I imagined.  Oh my, yes, hidden lessons clinging, indeed.

Take note that the Curtsy is specific.  Bend one’s knees so as to lower to the floor.  At the same time, keep one’s back straight, and avert one’s gaze to the floor.

Here’s a modern interpretation.  Keep your crotch and your ass pointed to the floor with your back straight, lest your actions to the contrary give someone a chance to take advantage from behind.  Keep your back straight as you lower towards the floor to insure that your bosom will not flaunt itself in response to gravity, nor seem too proud.  And, whatever you do, don’t make eye contact while trying to remain unfettered for that moment, unless you want to risk that your eyes will work against the Power of the Curtsy.

Fast forward this little Gem into the daily life of a Working Writer.  Every business move, a Curtsy.  Every discussion about your work with the Spirit of the Curtsy.  Your plots, characters – moving towards or away from…the proverbial Curtsy.

Next time you have the chance to curtsy or bow, give it some thought.  There might be a good reason to bend at the knee, back straight, eyes lowered.

Transformation 101: The Cake Becomes a Pie @VerbaVitae

I try to avoid much about my current work life on this Blog, on Twitter.  But, sometimes stepping out of my obscurity is worth the exposure.  Today’s one of those days.  Because I realize I can share some things that may make a big difference to my readers.  Here goes.  Below, I provide some needed factoids, and give you some tools to better your Project Life.

My life is adorned with the unavoidable streamers of my Paradigm on Everything- that Everything is Energy.  That’s because for the last thirteen years, I have worked as an Energy Professional.  Among other things, people consult me about life, business, property, and serious health issues.  I don’t just get info on these topics for my clients – I work to change them for the better.  Basically, I’m an Urban Shaman, some form of a Hip Wizard.

The tenets of my work can relate to the success of a creative project, film, script, novel and the like – so I’m sharing some of my Wizardry Tools today.  First, know that you and I and our projects basically can’t get away from the reality that Everything is Energy.

We can start to make sense of Energy if we define it as units of information.  Little units – that can be detracted from, added to, changed a little or a lot.  In my work, I simply decide how something could be optimally improved – generally or specifically, and intend for the Energy to match the intention, or as close to it as possible.  This process of re-constructing Energy in form and/or function (think muscles and muscle movement as an example of form and function) from one state to another, is Transformation.  On an atomic level, it may go BLAM, POP, SPARK, ZING … all I know is that in the blink of an eye, the Thing I’ve Worked On is different.

In my experience, there really is no limit to how dramatically something can transform.  I attribute the degree of Transformation to whether the Universe will allow it.  I always start with an intention that hands the outcome over to something other than me.  But beyond that first intention, the reality is that often things change quickly – the issue or condition transforms:  people who can’t walk can walk, people with drug dependence and disability due to pain and injury, become suddenly injury free, pain-free and live then on without drugs – and the most dramatic to me, the sudden departure of serious illness.

Okay.  Here’s an example of my attempting to transform something in real-time.  Let’s say someone comes to me with a deviated septum and crooked nose.  First, I set my intention – that the outcome be determined by something other than me, and that the Energy transform optimally.  I then begin my work to Transform the Energy.  I attempt to straighten, move over, widen, thin out – whatever it looks like I need to do.  The part of their face I’m working on at the time looks wavy, almost fluid.  I do this without touching a person.  While I do this work without even being in the same Hemisphere as the person, being in the same room is handy, because I can adjust my work based on how the nose and face look as I go.  The result has always been successful – the client can breathe, they have a beautiful nose.  The purpose of this Blog is not my work or noses, so read on.

I describe the above, to let you see that I attempted something unheard of, but my intentions led me to a great result.  Transforming Energy is about getting down to what needs to happen for the Thing to be Different.  I don’t take a long walk from “A-Z” to accomplish that.  I simply recognize where things are at, and where I want them to be.  The Thing goes from “A to wherever” in a flash.

What does this have to do with transforming a cake into a pie – the title of this Post?  I talked in my last blog post about how we are benefited from letting a project or an issue ripen to its best self before we go Interventionist.  Today, I’m talking about how to harness this little thing called Energy Transformation when we are sure we want the Something to be Different – when we want the Cake to be a Pie, and how you can facilitate Transformation for your creative projects.

Let’s take a project – our Cake in the Oven.  Film, script, novel draft.  We think it’s done.  We’ve taken it out of the oven.  It’s definitely done.  But, what if the words and images are great but the underlying Energy is less than ideal?

An important Factoid here is that The Energy of Something is more than what we think we see or know about.  It’s the invisible Stuff that can dictate how Energy behaves in real-time.  This can make or break a project.

Here’s a few questions:  Without threat of starvation, would you eat food that had been cooked in a morgue?  Would you want a piece of art in your home created by a mass murderer?  Would you want a piece of jewelry that was made by a slave?  Would you willingly wear a used wedding dress where the marriage ended in divorce?

The great news is…Energy can be Transformed.

How can we harness Transformation to better our projects?  First, Wizard jeans on, wands up.  Okay.  Here are the tools.  We can better the project in a few tangible ways.  First off, I highly suggest you: Intend that the outcome be determined by something other than you – your Higher Power, if you are comfy with that.  This insures that you can detach from the outcome, and something else decides how the intended work that’s coming fits into The Scheme of Things.  Tool Number One:  Intend that whatever is inhibiting the project from flourishing be removed.  That’s it.  Transformation.  Need something a little more hands-on?  Tool Number Two:  Imagine that your project sits in a garden.  What do you see?  How can you make that plant-bed better for your project?  Often when I look at my project gardens, I see weeds.  This represents for me, Energy that is detracting from the health of the project.  I imagine pulling the weeds.  Need a Scarecrow?  Erect one.  Do whatever you need to do to make that garden space a better environment for your Project.  Visit the garden often to maintain its health.

And finally, the Mother of all Energy Transformation Tools.  Tool Number Three:  Calls back Energy in the form of thoughts that left your head about your Project – your fears, angst, pessimism, events that have occurred around the project that were not positive, etc.  Imagine you can call all of this counter-productive Energy back from the places in the Universe it went to.  Ask it to come back about two feet from you.  Imagine you can blow up this Energy like little fireworks.  This neutralizes the Energy.  Now, imagine positive helping thoughts in their place – that the project is sound, that it is vital, that it is blessed, that it is the best version of itself.  Intend that these new positive thoughts leave your head and go out into the Universe to Do Their Thing.

And finally, an intention that will transform a cake into a pie anytime – Tool Number Four:  Intend that you detach from the outcome.  Attachment to outcome is certain to bunch up the panties of any Energy, and disable it from manifesting as it could otherwise.

Transformation Before My Eyes

Transformation Before My Eyes Guinness Estate, Ireland, 2009

These tools, incidentally, can be used for any part of your project – professional relationships, etc.  And, these tools can be used for any aspect of your life.

Two last things:  FYI, I bat for the Good Guys.  And, please don’t re-frame your opinion of who I am on what you’ve read here.  It’s just a job.  I also poop, cry, laugh, watch football, and oh yeah, write. 😀

Got a question?  Shoot me a comment.

Photo: From My 2009 Trip to Europe

Transformation Prelude: The Cake’s In the Oven

I love the phrase “The cake’s in the oven.”  Not a darn thing you can do to make that cake bake to its best any faster.

This concept comes up a lot in appointments with clients about some part of their life – my work’s not the point of this blog.  But, what I hear that relates to the ‘cake’ is: “It’s taking so long!”  “What am I doing wrong?”  “It hasn’t come together.”  And, “Maybe I’m not good enough to…”

We’re all waiting on a cake – of some kind. I don’t care who you are, or what you do. If you are a writer, filmmaker, director, screenwriter, plumber, banker, gardener, salesperson, someone searching for some kind of fulfillment. We all wait on the cake.

If we rush the cake, its flavor may suffer from poor composition.  If we turn up the heat, it may get burned.  If we often open up the door of the oven to check on it, we slow its progress. If we take it out too early, it tastes like batter.

This is the great risk for any writer, filmmaker – even a seeker of love.  We rush the deal, the career, the publishing; we pinch, we look, we insist – the ART, the DREAM.  What we don’t realize is that as soon as we’ve conceived something and brought it into this world, it is orbiting around some planet in some solar system, that has to do much more with Itself than with us.  And yet, we act as if we can control it.

Enter the cake. The cake is the project, the intention.  Can we give it the time it needs in our head, in a drawer, in the mail, on a desk, in discussion, in production, in printing, in editing, in uploading – in time?   Can we wait with our blessings?

If we opt to wait and let it do its thing, then that work of ART, that realized DREAM will be the best version of Itself that you can deliver, like a midwife out into the world – whether viewed by only you, or by millions.

Getting Down To It

Sometimes, there is nothing left to do but jump in.  You’ve circled the rim, looking for stairs.  You’ve thrown in stones to see if you can see the bottom.  You’ve watched the surface, looking for signs about what lurks beneath.

If you can’t recall the last time you did this, your brain does.  It’s trained to scan and surmise data.  It’s programmed to factor and consider and rationalize to good conclusions.  But, we sometimes prolong the process that our nervous system would make in good course, because we are indecisive.  And then again, sometimes the indecision leads us to our decision if we will just listen.

Indecision is a wavering that puts us nowhere immediately, and somewhere instantly.  It puts us right where we started, albeit with a slightly different view of shadow, a slightly different tilt of the head.  But, make no mistake we are essentially in the same place – in that we remain uncommitted, and free to continue to consider.

The beauty of indecision lies in the process of remaining undecided.  The perceptions that percolate; the issues that float and wave.  The eventual theme emerging, that even we can’t ignore.

Indecision happens for me in writing a lot.  A plot comes to life, but I feel uncertain.  How will it be received?  And yet, the camel’s nose is under the tent, the cat is out of the bag, you get the drift.  My indecision in my writing life almost always ends with a decision to jump in. Write it.

But, indecision is sometimes a voice to be listened to.  This happened for me when I was offered a very prestigious opportunity on Capitol Hill.  I could not shake the feeling that indecision was as close as I wanted to get to the offer.  Hindsight tells me that it would have been a dead-end road for me, as speaking out of both sides of my mouth is not a pleasure or a talent.  The opportunity gleamed in the darkness of all of my “shoulds”; but the intuitive voice that would not be silent saved me.

Sometimes, indecision is the last place we go before we decide to jump into no, yes, maybe, or do nothing.  Listening to the bridled voice in you that will move no further is sometimes what saves you, and allows you to jump in the body of water in writing and in life, that will sustain you – floating, swimming, fishing, dreaming.

Why Fly With Other Birds and Ride A Horse to the Corner Store @VerbaVitae

As we get older, hopefully we get wiser – or sometimes, we keep stepping in the same pile of poop in the same corral of asses…I experience both scenarios on a regular basis.

It seems like the last few years, the insights of wisdom and the dirty boots have been coming more hard and fast.  Today, I was driving home from my Sister’s.  I passed the corner store, where my better half said she saw a cowboy tie off a horse the other day.  As I drove closer to home, I  marveled at the Spring-looking sky, against what are miraculously still semi-green hills.  I was thinking about the birds I see everywhere – how they choose to fly together.

I have learned that it is not that birds fly together so they don’t get lost.  In fact, each has an ability to determine Due-North via a magnetic substance in their head.  They can fly where they need to go by themselves.

Birds fly together to encourage each other.  The Geese that honk when they fly are most often, encouraging the leader and each other to keep going – like a rally cry.  Joining Twitter has been more like that for me than even being in my Family.  I come from a group of relatives so self-reliant, that sometimes, we forget what it’s like to work with and for the mutual benefit of a Group.  Twitter Peeps sharing, problem-solving, encouraging, venting, and innovating is evolving this Peepster into a new Bird.  I want to honk while flying, feeling the counter-wind of other wings, sharing a common vision of what’s below and in front of me.

Enter the horse tied off at the corner store.  The Cowboy in question definitely did not have access to a jet pack, but probably had access to a car.  What does riding a horse to a corner store get you?  It gets you a slower trip.  Time to reflect, look, listen, feel, smell:  The experience of choosing how one gets somewhere.

One of my most favorite people was Carla Fry, now part of the Big Hollywood in the Sky.  At the time she died, she was a mere early forty-something.  She was Executive Producer at New Line, the highest-ranking woman in Hollywood, and in charge of production for the ‘Lord of the Rings’ Trilogy.  I met her towards the end of her life, and spent more time with her than anyone else in the last month of her life.  She said something that I will never forget as we chatted one afternoon: She looked out her window to her rose bushes and said, “If I had it to do all over again, I would garden roses.”  This statement floored me because in the end, she just wanted the quiet connection to flowers – that she could nurture and enjoy – a far cry from her experience as Studio Executive.

If Carla were here today, she would advocate me flying with other birds and riding my proverbial horse to the corner store – with a rose in my mouth.  I hope to look back at some point, after the completion of some migration so to speak, and see that I have indeed, lived “Carla-fied” – heeded,  and then exceeded at the Art of Living.

Gone Elvis

My Dad speaks about his military service sometimes – joined a few years after the WWII dust settled.  When he does, there’s a look in his eye that’s like a key to a secret language, as if a language that only other Servicemen and Servicewomen can understand.  Like a code or oath, or both; or an acquired knowledge brandished, then branded by the stress of Living Soldier.  Certainly acquired with pride.  But, perhaps that secret code, that acquired knowledge, is the seed of a cerebral failsafe- a personal Gone Elvis.

Gone Elvis, according to the Oxford Dictionary of the U.S. Military, is a Slang term for “to have died or disappeared, or be lost, missing in action.”

This poem is inspired by Women in Uniform who come home from a War Zone, to find that they are not whole.

“gone Elvis”  is a soon-to-be independent short film about a woman who comes home, but in some basic ways, is still at war.  “gone Elvis” will begin shooting this summer.  To find out how you can help bring this story to film and screen, visit http://davidnewhoff.com

Gone Elvis

Camouflage is my favorite color
‘Cause I Am Gone when it carries me under.

I’m the girl next door you never saw
In my gun and my boots with my mind done gnawed
I’m the girl next door that’s hard to see
I’m the color of the landscape on the streets.

 I’m Gone Elvis – don’t know how
Still a uniform and a number now.
I fight the war that’s in my head
Gotta soldier that, or I’ll end up dead.

 I’m Gone Elvis ’til the day I die
‘Til the bullets fall or my spirit flies.

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