December 28, 2009

This Was Not My Decade From Hell, Part 2

Just cleaning up some loose ends before the 2000s slip into the black hole of history. This is a sequel to my previous post about personal creative high points from a mad decade. Without further ado, then:

2005: I play two memorable gigs with Honey White: Ventura and Hollywood.

This was a banner year for HW: the album we recorded in San Francisco was finally released in April, accompanied by a Nicholby's show in Ventura that was memorable for me because of how easy it was. We played on bonus time, basically, and I was so into it that if it were not for the recording I made that night, I wouldn't remember anything about the show at all. The good ones are like that, you know? Anyway, we played a handful of other shows supporting the new CD, and of those, the most notable was when we invaded the old Derby Club in Hollywood (pictured above) to play a quick and deadly 8-song set. Lots of people showed up—we called in every favor and pulled in fans from, like, four SoCal counties—but I only had about 30 seconds each to speak with them since the show's logistics were so regimented. It was a definite zenith in my amateur rock posturings, but to date, it was Honey White's penultimate live gig.

2006: I help make certain domestic-stability arrangements official.

Since 1998, Emily has been helping me keep free of that contagious, spastic melodrama that I am so susceptible to. Getting married is obviously a personal high point, but it's also a creative one—when someone gives you the gift of relative emotional stability, it frees your mind and soul up to do all kinds of different thinking. All that stuff about creativity going slack when one is happy is total bullshit; the creative impulse just takes a different, alternately focused form. For me, well, I need a rock, a base of operations, a fortress of solitude—and other such anchors—and thankfully someone else needed that from me as well. As for scoring a mortgage on top of this (later in 2007) tethering us to Ventura for a while, it would become strikingly apparent that the old cliché of "settling down" was anything but, what with all the traveling we ended up doing to simply see each others' families. New places, new people, new inspiration—that was my '06.

2007: I step up my designer/wordsmith/rockstar cred. Sort of.

It only took me about two and a half years to figure out two things about the design biz: 1) how it works, print-wise, and 2) how out of my league I was, web-wise. Good news first: in 2007, I took on full production responsibility for one of the print projects in-house—the Gifted Education Communicator research journal. I got to build on the redesign my friend Mia began in late 2006, and by the end of the year I had some award-worthy material. It got even better in 2008 (the bottom row of that image above), but the grunt work happened in '07. Web development work was another story—I attended a conference in March '07 that showed me just how much I had to learn, and fast—and it would take me until summer of 2009 (and two more Web Design World conferences) to claw my way into something resembling professional credibility. Five years to achieve basic design biz competence? Guess I wasn't such a gifted child after all.

2008: I blog like crazy, begin writing a novel, and record & release its soundtrack.

Or as I described it at year's end, "the year of staring at screens and typing furiously." I'd screwed around with blogging since 2003, but being a late blooming web geek, I didn't get around to doing anything useful with the medium until late 2007, when a Honey White hiatus prompted me to reconfigure this blog to be an online compilation of all the written stuff I'd spewed out into the world (published or otherwise) from 1997-2007. The other big accomplishment was finally writing (and blogging) The Weapon of Young Gods, a novel I'd been developing since late 2006. In '08 I busted out about 2/3 of its first draft—but perhaps most importantly, I recorded a soundtrack album for it, which was released under the old Low Tide side project moniker.

2009: I blog some more, finish the novel, document some nostalgia, and write songs again.

2009 wasn't much different from '08, except that, sadly, my creativity began to taper off writing-wise. I still slothfully sat on my ass and blogged enough to compile plenty of stuff for 2008-2009, and even wrapped up the novel in June, but there was a palpable drop-off in quality stuff. I found other ways to be weird, though—making the Creeping Nostalgia photo project go mega in April for one—but ended up clinging to an old standby: song lyrics. Yep, I dashed off two of 'em in November and December—no tunes, just lyrics—but with only 3 songs written since Honey White's trip to the studio in 2004, that was kind of a big deal.

So that's that—my big creative blips from the 2000s. As for 2010 and beyond, well…I chose to make resolutions on my birthday instead of New Year's, whatever that's worth.


  1. I'm drunk and posting in yer blog! And there's nothign you can do about it!

    ...I mean, other than deleting my comment. But if you did that I'd probably try to punch you in the nuts.

    Oh! And happy new year! That's why i've been drinking in the firs tplace. Bryn: keeping maturity and intelligence intact on the interwebs.

  2. Also, congratulations on the excellent work you've done over the last 10 years. And I mean that seriously, of course. You've been able to create some excellent graphic design stuff as well as even excellenter music, which I am flattered to be continuing to learn.

    Also, excellent. It's just a damn good word to overuse.

  3. I really should be asleep right now, but since I'm not, well, have a muy bien twenty-ten. Aha, now there's some creative genius, right?

    I'm too sober right now.

  4. Of course, now I realize that all of those are links -- and no, I didn't click on them. You're getting phished, Keir!

  5. well, you've been busy and productive too it would seem!

  6. Why are the phishers wasting their time with me? They know I don't like jam bands.


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