Adored Ephemera – pages 6 & 7

It’s been too long of a while since I updated my sketchbook project 2015 tag. Go here and read the pages so far in order.

Page six contains an instant photo of my DSLR D5000 (RIP). I broke it in July because I’m foolish but maybe it’s fixable. Once I have the money, I’ll bring it somewhere to get a repair done. I really enjoy it and I had such dreams for it.

Anyway, on the left is a negative film strip of a Summer trip to California/ Las Vegas. Before 2007, maybe 2005 or 2006? I know I’m on the second to the bottom segment, next to Manang Abet. I’m the girl with the misshapen skirt on the right. The bottom one was intercepted by a stranger while at Disney Land I believe. Not quite sure what the others were of.

Anyway the words say:

Photos I want to take:

  • My first standing ovation because of something I wrote and read aloud
  • A wall full of shelves of books with rows dedicated to my own published work and my diaries and creative journals.
    • Then my gorgeous home library
  • My bookstore’s reading with a favorite author.
  • NYC view from my office of a publishing company I work in.
  • Open book spreads of my colorful, wide-ranging notebooks and journal
  • Having a drink at a book bar like Molasses (Brooklyn, NYC)
  • Selfie with Ameriie
  • My first poem in Ilocano/Tagalog
  • Selfie of happy tears
  • Collections of zines I made
  • Delicious meal I cooked
  • Guerilla street art I created
  • When I surprise myself

15 additional tasks I want to take pictures of:

  1. My first tattoo (either you are more across my right wrist, or my initials ER behind my left ear since all of my immediate family has them as well)
  2. Outfit accidentally and perfectly matches the decor. Whether it’s the carpet, the wall, the art, the furniture, garden, etc., TAKE YOUR SHOT.
  3. An undeniably sexy photo of meee 😀 haha
  4. The very first love letter I’ll receive, maybe just the envelope and the greeting though with the date heh
  5. First car I buy. May I get over this stupid anxiety and phobia eventually lol
  6. An art exhibit I’m a part of
  7. OR one I curated! (interactive or immersive, plz)
  8. Many book art objects I created
  9. Something I knitted
  10. A journal I handbound and selected the individual pages. It’d be cool if I refurbished old book covers. Maybe with handmade paper. Then ALL of it fulled up with mixed media and my crappy handwriting lol
  11. My first royalty statement AND royalty check
  12. A set of stickers I handcrafted. May they be adorable, raunchy, scorching, and unapologetic
  13. Doughy, soft chocolate chip cookies I baked from scratch. Ugh I want one
  14. My name in the acknowledgments
  15. Reading a book in an unorthodox place. (a list)

I’d like to create photo essays and short stories shot by me. I’m at the apex of my creativity and productivity, and it hurts that I don’t have my camera at the ready. But I think I’ll appreciate it a lot more once I get it fixed or get a new one. That will have to wait though. I’m itching to explore more mediums and photography would be a perfect vessel. I still have my lomo instant and diana mini, but don’t quite have the money to develop or buy more film. Another thing that has to wait.

But I still have scores left to do and I don’t want to focus on what I don’t have since it sacrifices and blemishes what I do.

Page 7

The background is of discarded, losing lottery tickets of my Lola. The photo is a picture of them, and I decided to use the lotto as the background just in case you couldn’t tell haha.

It says:

There are chances I never had, opportunities I never sought,
all because the odds were never in my favor.
And yet, here I am, born from a sperm of a million
and an egg of a thousand.
Genes passed down from ancestors of millennia ago.
Fated encounters and events that led to my birth
to a loving family, endearing friends, and a fortunate existence.
How dare I not try to reach further.
to never reach for the stars that aligned for my very occurrence.
To dishonor those who came before, who sought a future that I’m
all because I’m scared to attempt.
Why am I frightened of a possibility that could be good and mine?
Why do I feel that I’m not good enough?
It is enough to breathe and believe.
To attempt to see reveries through and even when you fail
At least you know you took a chance on yourself.
Don’t leave your dreams to the wayside
when you’re the grandest fantasy you’ll ever have
Don’t abandon yourself.

I feel like I believe this more than ever, perhaps a year or more after constructing this page. I took so many chances this past year and I know I’ll up the ante even more in 2017. How can I not? There’s so much out there waiting for me. Like fuh, I adopted the title of “actress” and I had a “director” and I was part of a “cast” so I had “cast mates” and an “audience” and I was “onstage” where I had “staging” and attended a “cast party” and I was in a “playbill”.

If you told me that I was in all of the above, I would’ve looked at you crazy. Even when I submitted my first monologue, I wanted someone else to act it. Well cuz I was curious how it’d look and because I didn’t think I could do it. So much has changed that I finally decided I had to. “Psychotic Break” was my story; my first name was embedded in it.

How can I not?

I wasn’t accepted into Kundiman, but I will try again next year. They said they’re seeking more funding which is great cuz the acceptance rate was 6% for fiction and 5% for poetry. I applied for fiction. But maybe I should go for other residencies and fellowships. There’s a letterpress seminar I want to go for at the very least. And there’s volunteer positions I want to do as well. Plus I want to find a next career step that’s more aligned with my passions. Perhaps trade fiction or a nonprofit. Then there’s the scores of books I have lying around and so many ideas and assignments floating in my head.

There’s a lot of unexplored territory for me and I just have to give myself the OK to chart and take those first few steps. I’m feeling that depression coming in a bit, along with the self-doubt. I hate it. But the only way to get rid of it is to work on these ideas and applications. I don’t want to read this poem and feel my heart sink because I stopped believing and stopped trying.

Hell no.

The possibilities are there. The potential exists. The opportunities are just waiting for me.

I want to grip my pen and start writing. Read and absorb these dusty, longed for pages. There’s applications just waiting for my typing fingers. And I know I’m the right candidate for many of them. I just have to nudge myself forward.

I wouldn’t have been accepted to In Full Color 2017 if I didn’t put out my best and believed I had a place onstage. Neither as an author events intern for Asian American Writers’ Workshop. Or as the head event and donation space coordinator for The Asian American Literary Review‘s “Open In Emergency: A Special Issue on Asian American Mental Health“.

There’s so much I deserve and I don’t see it. So much that wants me to be part of them if I just let it. I don’t want to give up on myself ever again. I don’t deserve that.

I just don’t.

It’s 1:22 in the morning but I’m going to finally apply for that prose reader position I’ve been eyeing. Do more reading. Kinda scared to approach my long-neglected diary but maybe that too, and finally paste some ephemera down.

But at least I got this much done. It feels good to at least document this spread after letting it ferment in my drafts for a few weeks.

I hope with the next blog post, you’ll see me do a lot more. Enough that would make the little me grab my hands and make me jump with her lol.

With two feet off the ground,


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