Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Watercolor, "Ocean Sunset"

My newest watercolor was painted today.  I have painted sunsets before, but this time I tried something new and it isn't perfect.


"Ocean Sunset" by Sara Megan Kay, 10/30/13

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Watercolor: "Ghost of the Field"

Last night I got hit with a thunderbolt of inspiration and painted my first watercolor in many years.  Today I finished it with a little penciling to better define some of the edges.  Unfortunately, the scanner isn't as big as the painting so a small amount has been cut off as you can see.  Hope you like it.

"Ghost of the Field" by Sara Megan Kay, 10/28-10/29/13

Friday, June 21, 2013

Why is "Alice at the Spa" important?

I just asked myself that question...I am at a loss for words.

Two years of my life is in this book.  It is just as big of a chunk of me as the other two poetry books I wrote, regardless of page count.

I am still trying to find my voice, finding ways to further expose myself to lovers and stalkers.  I try to dig deeper into my influences, dust off the ones I haven't read in a while and find a new reason to love them all over again.

It's been a big long dry spell for me, been bothering me for a couple of years now with small intervals of inspiration in between.  But I find my heart is growing, and finding new things I want to say.  The trouble is, my heart isn't always connected to my tongue.

I've been dwelling on the same muses for too long.

I still long for the slightest touch, but it's drifting further back into my past and becoming harder to imagine as a reality, due to my increasingly established current situation.  Wanting it isn't enough, I will have to literally dig up the roots which have grown deep into life's soil.

All of this is in Alice at the Spa...and more.

I have attempted to bring new muses to the canvas, which have revealed a more erotic side.  Discovering Anais Nin played a key role in this, as did a few new friends.

But still, I let my past plague me.  These last eight years have been, shall we say, illuminating.  I don't know how I can ever fully let go.  It's become part of me, it's intertwined with my DNA and all possibly psychosomatic.  I believe it, therefore it must be true.  I haven't been told otherwise, so I hang on.

What good does it do?  I've hidden away my great treasures, only to take a peek occasionally when I am alone.  An old brown journal, a photograph, several cherished books and music albums.  I believe these are the key to when I was most happy...so naively happy, and yet so stupid to have sabotaged it.

But there I go again...

I am Alice.  I have seen strange things and known some fascinating characters.  Scott, my Mad Hatter.  Mary, my Caterpillar.  Mandy, my Dormouse.  Sarah Jean, my Cheshire Cat.  Matthew, my Mock Turtle.  They've all gone down the rabbit hole with me, and have also become part of me.


Go ask Alice...I think she'll know...





My nightly dreams
Which confuse and taunt me
With sensations that surprise
(Considering the cause)
That I can be touched in such a way
That I am on fire
and the hands behind the touch
Stem from an unlikely one.

Attempts at reciprocation
Winds up with my body shocked
By the electric current,
Laser beams blackening my nails
and my eyes seeing someone else
Winking from around the corner.

Do I know you?

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Announcing the publication of "Alice at the Spa: Poems and More"

PUBLISHED JUNE 19TH, 2013



Alice at the Spa:  Poems and More
By Sara Megan Kay 
ISBN 978-1-300-75445-9
All Rights Reserved.

The third volume of poetry by Sara Megan Kay is chocked full of erotically and emotionally charged poems, as well as previously unpublished "rambles" in prose, as the author becomes firmly entrenched into her 30s and tries to leave the past behind.  What results here is a threeway tug-of-war between past, present and future, neither of these being without their hidden storm clouds.  Love, sex, regret and sacrifice are recurring themes, and influences by Anais Nin, Henry Miller, Lewis Carroll, F. Scott Fitzgerald and Sylvia Plath are quite strong.  Step into the romantic, surreal world of Sara Megan Kay, the Unknown Poet of the Oregon Coast.


"Alice" is published by Lulu.com, and is available in paperback and eBook editions.
Also available in my Kindle store!
Click here to visit my bookstore and pick up a copy now!

Want to get a free copy of my book?  See the blog entry before this and read all about my contest which ends on July 31st.

Monday, June 3, 2013

Today

I want to spend today trying to forget what today is.  I don't want to look at anyone in the eyes for too long, because then they'll see and then I'll get the looks of sympathy, pity and whatever else.  I want to go to work, I want to throw lettuce around (bork bork bork!), I want to throw pickle slices at people and miss their heads by a mile, and sling burgers together in a madcap fashion.  I want it to be just like any other day.

But so help me God...if I decide I want to crawl into a dark corner somewhere because it's gotten to be too much...let me.  Because it's still too soon.  It's still too fresh a memory for me.  If I'm going to get through the day, I want to do it as though it never happened.  So if you see me, and you want to tell me you're sorry because of what happened 2 years ago today, and that you're here for me if I need you...please don't.  I know you're here, but now is not the right day to tell me.  I don't want any reminders that I lost one of my best friends, that I still have the couch she died on (even though it's since been moved to a different part of the living room) and I still wear the pink robe every day that was her death shroud.  I wear it.  Every fucking day.  I wear it and I bear with every single bit of bullshit drama that comes my way because I somehow feel like I deserve it.  Karma baby.  I didn't cause Traci's death, as soon as I knew something was wrong, I called 9-1-1...but because I believe that I didn't act fast enough, I feel like I deserve every bad thing that happens to me.  It's fucked up, it's wrong and I know it.  I know I don't have any reason to feel this way.  It wasn't my fault, I couldn't have known, blah blah blah.  I WAS RIGHT THERE.  I SHOULD HAVE KNOWN.

Traci is always with me.  I'm getting the chills right now.  I've been drinking a little tonight, and I hope to sleep fairly deeply.  Because I don't intend to let this anniversary shut me down.  It's another day, I want to live it as though that were true.  Peace out.

Friday, May 31, 2013

Video: The Love That Time Forgot

Forgot to post this Wednesday morning, oops!


Writing update.

It's been crunch mode for the last few days.  My deadline that I set for completing Alice at the Spa:  Poems and More is here and I haven't made as much progress with the manuscript as I wanted to.  I initially claimed that I would be fine with publishing a shorter book of poems. but now I am not so sure.  Last page count was 125, with the "and More" section now reduced to just prose.  I decided to cut the essays because there was only "My Hell, My Kitchen" and another that is unfinished, which removed 6 pages from the manuscript.

I really don't know here, guys...should I follow through with my promise to not add any more material after the deadline passes today, and proceed with the publishing process?  Or should I give myself more time?  I know either choice is fine...perhaps it is my insecurity showing through.

But thankfully, I have recently had a major ego boost.  My friend John E. Wordslinger (Poetry E. Train, Poets of Blood, 21st Century Poets) posted on Facebook that he would like to buy and review my poetry books.  This was a startling and welcome surprise, a big honor.  I don't know yet whether he intends to buy ROTCT or SEPOC, or even both...I just hope he thinks his money was well spent in the end.

After all these years, I'm still nervous about other people reading my work.  Every kind word of praise and support I have received has been a godsend to me.  I need to hear that I'm doing something right.


Wednesday, May 8, 2013

To self-publish, or not to self-publish?

That is the question.

For it is no longer the norm for aspiring writers to send off their beloved manuscripts in a giant envelope, wait for months and then paper your walls with rejection letters.  Thanks to websites like Lulu and CreateSpace, we can do it ourselves quickly, easily, and for the most part, free!

Here is a list of pros and cons that I have put together so it will help you decide whether it would be worth it to self-publish or not.  Since I go through Lulu, I will be using them as my primary example.

Pros of self-publishing:

1.  You have complete creative control over your project.  Whether it is a chapbook, an eBook, a spiral bound photo book or an old school hardcover...you can make it happen exactly how you want it right down to the binding, book description (which will be seen on all websites selling your book) and cover design.  The only restriction you have is that there are only a few small requirements which your book must make before it can be distributed to retail websites, which mostly involve font selection, margins and any photos.  Small potatoes there.  No pesky editor will mess with your words or change the punctuation (unless you hire one, which can be costly)...but they also will not catch any typos or other errors you miss.  Some of these errors are not even seen until you have the first copy of your book in your hands, despite going over the manuscript on your computer countless times.  Before approving your book for distribution, Lulu requires you to purchase a test copy and make sure it is perfect.  If you find something wrong, you can go back and fix it...but at the cost of at least one more test copy.  This is the only real money that you are forced to spend on your project, and even then is typically less than $20.  Plus, you can take these test copies later, turn around and sell them as unique "collector" copies!

2.  You set your own price.  You can choose to sell them for as much or as little above production cost as you want, depending on how much profit you would be comfortable with.  Lulu will take a small percentage for their commission plus production cost per book you sell, but the rest of the profit goes to you.  You can get paid either by check or even through PayPal.

3.  Self-publishing websites like Lulu and CreateSpace lets you release your vision to the world at almost no cost to you whatsoever.  There are options for free ISBN numbers and distribution to all major booksellers online.  Unless you choose to purchase a marketing kit (want matching bookmarks or postcards to give away with your book?) or employ the services of an editor or other type of professional, the only money you pay is the production cost for any test copies or books you wish to sell on your own.  The choice is yours, nobody will try to talk you into spending more money than you have to.  No pressure.

4.  The books are made with the same quality as you see in the books sold in stores.  There is no difference in paper, ink, binding or size.  However, the appearance of the book is entirely your responsibility.  You will want to take some real time to make sure it looks as good on the outside as it does on the inside.  After all...people do judge books by their cover.

5.  The self-publishing websites are very easy to use.  To quote from the Geico commercials:  It's so easy, a caveman can do it!  There is a wizard for every type of book you can imagine.  You get walked through the process step-by-step, and if you want to go back and change something, you can do so painlessly.  Also, there are no deadlines to meet.  You can take as much time as you need.

6.  You retain all rights and ownership to your book.  No further explanation needed here, imo.

7.  You no longer have to worry about rejection.  As long as your book has met the few basic document requirements set by the self-publishing website of your choice (mentioned above), it will get published regardless of content.


Sounds pretty cool, huh?  It is.  But like with all great deals, there is a catch.


Cons of self-publishing:

1.  You do not receive a free copy of your book, as you would with traditional publishing companies.  However, as already mentioned before, you do not pay full price either...only the cost of production.

2.  No publicist or personal agent.  You do the legwork.  On that momentous occasion where your book finally sees the light of day, there will be no press releases or glowing reviews in the New Yorker or Poetry Magazine.  If you don't have the money to hire a publicist, it is up to you to create the fanfare yourself.  If you want to make any money at all from your books, that means going to book fairs, markets and open-mic nights, setting up book signing events, creating and maintaining some sort of online presence via social networking, YouTube or building a website, and anything else in between.  Bottom line, you will get as much out of the experience as you put into it.  If you do little to no work in promoting your books, you simply will not sell any.  However, even if you do put in a serious effort, you still may not become as famous or rich as Stephen King or J.K. Rowling.  Hopefully though, money and celebrity should not be the reasons why you wrote a book in the first place!  *wink*

3.  Unless a miracle happens, you will still be poor and relatively unknown.  You still can't quit your day job.  Your biggest fans will still be your family and friends, and chances are the only real publicity you will have is an article in the local paper, which you will frame and take with you to all book events.  Almost anyone who writes a book thinking it will make them a celebrity will be bitterly disappointed.  Some do get lucky...but for the most part, any success you find will be mostly underground and/or local.  Sorry to burst your bubble there.


Have I convinced you?  Take a look around the different self-publishing websites, see which one is the best choice for you.  I personally recommend Lulu, but please scout around and decide for youself.  I hope you found this helpful.

Video: Bullshit Romantic Nonsense

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Video: A Ballad For Those Who Question

This was slightly inspired by the ballades of Francois Villon. Hope you enjoy.



Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Video: A Conversation Spent

Should've had this posted last night, but it wasn't meant to be. Bad night. I apologize. Hope you like this. I wrote this as a special request for my friend Brian.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Video: Brewing

As promised, here is my next video. Hope you enjoy "Brewing" and please like/share/fav/comment!!!

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

First of new videos posted tonight!

The first of seventeen new videos has been uploaded to my channel.  Every Wednesday around midnight, you will see a new one.  Please enjoy "Floating" and tell your friends.

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Twitter and the art of shortening sentences.

I tweet.

It's something I never really thought was necessary before.  I am perfectly happy on Facebook and I need the space to ramble if I want to.  I can't do that on Twitter.  Hell, some of my tweets feel like I am dumbing myself down in order to say everything in 140 characters or less.  But I am following an ever-growing list of celebrities, writers, publishing companies, book magazines and soap opera actors; getting a taste of what my ideal network would be like.  I am trying to get some more exposure for my blog, for my books.  It's an experiment for now, we'll see if it makes a difference.  Feel free to follow me.

I realized today that it's been seven months since I last filmed a video for my YouTube channel.   That has been put on the back burner as I go through the motions in order to stay afloat.  At the end of my days, I am exhausted and only crave relief.  I recharge my batteries by doing more reading than I have in a very long time.  The book I am taking to work with me now is Children of the Albatross, volume two of Anais Nin's "Cities of the Interior."  I'll be finished with it soon.  Four Chambered Heart is next.

I haven't gone through my books in a while to see if there are any poems I want to read in a new video.  I'm contemplating on reading one that isn't published yet, sort of a sneak peek into whats coming.  Another idea that has been knocking around in my head is reading my five favorite poems by Sylvia Plath.  But in order to accomplish these, I need to find the time to focus and film.

Recently I did a photo shoot for the front cover art of my next book, to be titled "Alice at the Spa:  Poems and More".  The model is Sarah Jean, who started out as a friend of a friend (and former co-worker), and has quickly become my female muse.  See her as Alice here.

This is a test image...not the finished project by any means but the front cover will look something like this.  Remember, you saw it here first:


I need to spend more time blending in the sugar skull better, but you get the idea.

That's about it, really...trying to do the best I can to keep a proper balance of things.  I wish I could find a better job, start over in a position where I can make enough money to pay the bills and have plenty of time to pursue my art.  But as things are right now, it doesn't seem like it will happen.

Hope you got through V-Day in one piece...mine was definitely better than expected.  Take care.

Thursday, January 10, 2013

I've begun a food blog :)

After some time of thinking, plotting and preparing...I have started a third blog which will be all about my love of food.  I only have a few posts up now, one of which I literally copied and pasted from this blog, but I promise that in time, there will be plenty to sink your teeth into.  The view count has skyrocketed to nearly 200 views in less than 2 days!  I am simply mystified and thrilled at the same time.

My Hell, My Kitchen