Friday, June 27, 2014

RED Is Gearing Up!!!!!!!!


"Ego. Our ego is who we are. It’s the part of our functioning mind that is stuck between the id and the superego. My ego is who I am. It balances out my subconscious mind bringing me back to reality whenever I fall victim to my id or superego. My ego is nervous. Anxious. Guilty. My ego is red."-RED


 I'm happy to say that RED is going to go through the editing process starting July 1st! The novel is pretty long so it'll take a while to edit but I was told the latest I will have the manuscript back in my possession will be December 1st. This means that RED won't be able to come out in the Fall as I originally planned but it will be available by the Winter of 2015. 

As I mentioned before, the novel may not be as emotional as A Tragic Heart but it does have a lot of twists and turns. The plot is a little riskier and it continues to touch on major issues during teenage years.

SPOILERS! PLEASE DO NOT CONTINUE IF YOU HAVEN'T READ A TRAGIC HEART! SKIP TO NEXT SECTION!

For those of you who read the first novel, A Tragic Heart, you all know that part of the ending resulted in Taylor having Peyton's baby long after he's gone. RED follows the life of Taylor's daughter who is named after her father. Peyton (the daughter) is all grown up (the novel starts when she's 16, just like her mom) and she's being raised by Mason and Adayln (you all should remember them). Peyton has a lot in common with both her mother and father and the novel follows her struggle to grow up without them in her life. She's carefree and loves to take risks but many of her choices can seem less than desirable to others. 

Spoilers Ended! 
 
A lot like A Tragic Heart, RED is told from multiple point of views which means that everyone has a story and everyone has their own drama going on. I believe that it can be hard to tell a complete story from one point of view because realistically there is always more than one side to a story. People constantly make the same mistakes and it usually takes us more than one time to learn from them. RED is all about making mistakes, learning from your past, and moving on with life the best way you could. Sometimes we're ashamed of who we used to be but the important thing is to remember that we are not those people. We are who we think we can be and that's a very important theme in RED.

I'll start revealing character names soon. Maybe a write up on each character until the release of the novel...that sounds tempting enough!

 -S. Elle Cameron

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

The MonumenTour Was Monumental!

"You are what you love, not who loves you!" Fall Out Boy (Save Rock & Roll)


First off: the MonumenTour was the best concert I had the chance to go to since Paramore headlined the Honda Civic Tour in 2010! Not only did I get to rock out in the pit, only a couple of feet from the stage with my two favorite bands but I received words of inspiration. You know when you go somewhere and the person speaking seems like they took some insight from your life before forming their speech. That was the entire night for me this past Saturday. 

A major theme of the night was don't give up and any dream is possible no matter how stupid it may sound. The lead singer from New Politics stated, "this all started with a stupid dream but I am here today to tell you that sometimes stupidity is all you need!" WOW! That was the start of the night. Paramore and Fall Out Boy continued with their encouragement.

After suffering from countless rejections from literary agents, jobs, and the old fashion feeling of self-doubt, this message is exactly what I needed. It was almost as if I was meant to be there other than any other place in the world. As silly as it may sound, I felt singled out from the crowd. It was an emotional experience.

Paramore lit the place on fire when they sang Last Hope, Let The Flames Begin, and Part II (it's part 2 of Let The Flames Begin) back to back. All three songs are 'keep the faith' records that will keep you holding on even when your palms are bleeding. It's safe to say that everyone in the building felt the power and energy that poured out of the band. Those performances made me feel silly that I ever even thought of giving up. Just hearing over and over the lines from Last Hope, "it's just a spark but it's enough to keep me going," rebooted the motivation that I needed.

"This is how we'll dance when,
When they try to take us down
This is how we'll sing it.
This is how we'll stand when
When they burn our houses down.
This is what will be oh glory!"-Paramore (Let The Flames Begin) 

 

I thought I had all of the encouragement that I needed until it was time for Fall Out Boy to take on their set. Can I just say that I have always found Pete Wentz to be one of the most inspiring people of our generation? This guy has openly battled depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, and suicidal attempts and somehow still managed to stand in front of a crowd and tell them how great life is. Multiple times throughout the night Pete reminded the crowd that giving up is never an option; most notably when he said, "we were just four crummy kids from the suburban parts of Chicago, so if we can do it, so can anyone in this crowd!" My favorite part was when he said, "you just gotta remember that sometimes before it gets better, the darkness gets bigger," quoting a lyric from their song Miss Missing You from their newest album Save Rock and Roll. That lyric has always set my heart on fire but something about hearing him say it in person meant a lot more. At that point, I was so revved up, giving up was no longer on my list of options. By the time the band went into Save Rock & Roll I was ready to fist pump and chant over and over, "Oh no! We won't go! 'Cause we don't know when to quit!" Something about that part of the song is now stronger than it's ever been.

"You know time crawls on when you're waiting for the song to start
So dance alone to the beat of your heart"-Fall Out Boy (The Phoenix)

 

The MonumenTour was not just a concert that was meant to be fun with loads of energy. It was more than just head banging and fists pumps for me. It reminded me that you can't wait for a perfect time because there's no such thing. Like Fall Out Boy says, "dance alone to the beat of your heart." That same night Pete Wentz tweeted, "Don't stop 'til you get it." It felt like a personal message from him to me because it was exactly what I needed to hear. I needed to hear that they were only four crummy kids with a dream because I'm one crummy kid standing alone in hundreds of rejections with a dream in my head and in my heart. It was good to know that New Politics thought that their dream was too big and stupid because that is exactly how I feel. Seeing each band live out their stupid dream made me believe in stupidity and stupidity is the best motivation you can have! Don't give up until your breathing stops!








Wednesday, June 18, 2014

I'm The One That's Got To Die, So Let Me Live!

"Whatever it is that you do, you should do
You should do it with your head held high
So when you're doing your thing it's 'cause you wanna
And they never can ask you why"-
Pink (Do What You Do)


The legendary Jimi Hendrix once said, "I'm the one that's got to die when it's time for me to die, so let me live my life the way I want to.” For some reason people don't understand what he was saying. I mean, it's pretty self explanatory so why is it that people are still clutching their chests as if they're about to have a heart attack over someone's decision? Why are people still judging others in this day and age? 

What I have come to find in my short lifetime is that usually the judgmental ones are the biggest hypocrites. Those self righteous individuals wouldn't know true righteousness if it was crammed down their throats. I'm tired of living in a time where people get judged based on their looks. The world teaches us that looks aren't everything yet everyone is so quick to judge someone because they present themselves in a different way than most. 

I had an incredible English teacher when I was in high school. Her name is Mrs. Sullivan and she taught us the most important lesson anyone could ever give another. She taught us to never conform and to never be like anyone else or falter to society's "rules" and "standards". She taught me how to be an individual and think for myself and forget who is talking or watching. This lesson has set me free. 

Conformity binds us. That old saying, "if you can't beat them, join them," is lethal to the soul. It's basically telling you to kill who you are and just fit in and shut up. Never shut up! People have these misconstrued ideas and logic on what someone should be like because of their title. Am I supposed to be like you because we identify with the same group? NO! Open your eyes and see that I am an individual and I shouldn't be expected to do something because you think it's right. We need to start standing up for ourselves.

What do you see when you look at me? Chances are, you probably got me all wrong. Do you want to know what I stand for? What I represent? How about you ask me? Maybe you should have a chat with me over lunch to hear what I believe in or what I am passionate about. Truth is you know nothing about my struggles so you can't possibly know me or even have an idea about me until you actually get to know me. This goes for everyone. We all have different looks, personalities, and ways of expression and we should be free to show this without being prejudged.

Want to know who I am? I'm a girl who believes in feminism and equal rights for all. I advocate for those who suffer from mental illnesses and I will always encourage people to be whoever they want. I like short dresses and tight fitting clothes because I believe a woman's body is her own and it is her choice to do whatever she wants with it. She should embrace it and love it whether it is privately or publicly. I'm an animal lover and will help someone at the drop of a dime as long as I have the means. I stand up for my friends and will probably take a bullet for my dog. I'm really shy upon first meeting and a lot of people mistake this for weakness. I support those I believe in and loyalty goes a long way with me. I obsess over crazy hair color and I like rocking out to rock music in my room alone. You probably didn't see half of these things when you looked at me.

If you want to judge someone based on what you see on the outside, then go ahead! It's probably your loss anyway. That person that you judge is probably one of the most amazing people you would ever come to know. If you are the one being judged, then I say to you do not change for anyone or anything. It's like what Kacey Musgraves said, "just 'cause you can't beat them, don't mean you should join them!"


Tuesday, June 17, 2014

No One's THAT Beautiful In High School!

 "Perfection is a disease of a nation"-Beyonce (Pretty Hurts)


This may come as a surprise to some of you (the high schoolers out there) but no one looks the way the high school students in movies look! Okay, so maybe you sort of knew this but I want to put things in a realistic perspective.

So, I was hanging out with an old high school friend last night (the only person I still talk to from high school) and we settled for watching movies from Redbox at my place. We decided on This Is 40 and Carrie (the remake). The movie I would like to talk about today is Carrie and the portrayal of young adults in high school.

First off, no one looks that good in high school! Like, seriously, come on! These kids had flawless skin, bleached white teeth and everything was tight and proportioned. Who looks like that in general but in HIGH SCHOOL?! It was something that we both had to point out and talk about throughout the movie. We reminisced on how awkward everyone looks during those years and the people who we thought were good looking was well....not as good looking as they are now (just a taste of honesty).

I'm not writing this to judge but I am writing this as a way to shed light on something: teen movies and shows are fake! Just like the rest of Hollywood. Thinking back during my high school years when I watched One Tree Hill and other shows that were targeted toward teenagers, everyone was gorgeous. I mean, did any of you go to school with someone that looked like Sophia Bush or Chad Michael Murray? ...Didn't think so...

The portrayal of teenagers onscreen are so unrealistic, no wonder why so many young adults have self-esteem issues. I hated everything about the way I looked because I thought I was supposed to look like Brooke Davis or Peyton Sawyer. Now that I'm out of high school (almost 5 years now), I'm able to see high school students clearly for the first time. They all look like kids trying to transition into adulthood. They have acne and glasses and braces. Their bodies aren't fully developed and looks like they could use a couple of more years of growing. This is what you're supposed to look like in high school. These movies and shows make us believe that we're supposed to be supermodel status by the time we're fifteen. NEWSFLASH: NO ONE IS SEXY IN HIGH SCHOOL!

The ones in the movies and television programs who look like normal teens are always the ones who get teased or bullied. They're known as the geeks or outsiders. Realistically, This Is 40 had a more accurate portrayal of a teenager. Although the children were only in middle school, it seemed more likely. That's what I remember everyone looking like growing up.

Let me give you a run down: Pretty Little Liars is fake! One Tree Hill...fake! The Vampire Diaries...uh uh! Gossip Girl, Mean Girls, and all the rest are just a load of BS!

I'm here to tell you all that no one looks like Regina George, Elena Gilbert, Aria Montgomery, or Brooke Davis in high school!  Now college...that's a different story!


Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Red City Review of A Tragic Heart!

Here is a review from Red City Review on A Tragic Heart. I'm really grateful and excited about all of the positive feedback my first novel has been receiving. It makes me proud to know that I wrote something good when I was only 18 years old and it only took me one month to do so. I believed in this book for years now (and I still have some convincing to do) so it really means a lot. Reviews like these gives me a reason to continue writing and dealing with the stress of trying to become known. I just really want to share my stories with the world...plain and simple.

My favorite line from the review is, "The characters created in this book are the kinds that will be remembered, as they are realistic and raw, the kind you will either love or hate." This is just what I wanted when I created the book and hopefully someday we can see these characters play out on a big screen. That just takes a few more people to believe in this book the way I do. Thanks to everyone who read and also took the time to review A Tragic Heart.

A Tragic Heart by S. Elle Cameron

A Tragic Heart by S. Elle Cameron tells the story of Taylor Caldwell, a sixteen year old girl who has been struggling with depression. Her unfortunate hardships change and evolve when she starts a relationship with her high school crush, Mason, and they eventually decide to get married, even though Taylor’s family strong disapproves. For a short time, her life dramatically gets better and she finds happiness with the man of her dreams at her side. Unfortunately, the good times do not last for long, as unforeseen dramatic events cause her world to crumble all around her.

This novel follows a young girl trying to find meaning in life, while she tries to understand her true self and conquer her inner demons which often seem far too much for her to overcome. Cameron explores the usual themes that are so often present in a teenager’s life, and also adds in the typical elements of love triangles and the struggles of growing up. Switching back and forth between good times and bad, the author takes the reader on a roller coaster of emotion, as she crafts this tale of a troubled teenager coming of age, offering twists and turns on many pages to keep the story fresh and engaging. The characters created in this book are the kinds that will be remembered, as they are realistic and raw, the kind you will either love or hate. For a young adult novel, the subject material is rather dark, and is not to be taken lightly; especially as the ending itself is rather tragic. Nevertheless, this is the kind of tale that will stay with you after the book comes to its conclusion.

To purchase a copy of the book, click here to find it on Amazon.

Friday, June 6, 2014

Bob Dylan Said I (We) Shall Be Released

I've been compelled to write this today because I can't stop listening to Jeff Buckley's cover of "I Shall Be Released", originally written and recorded by the legendary Bob Dylan. There's a lot of pain and torture going on out there and I think at times we all forget that we will be released from all of the pain and struggles we must face. It's easy to forget when life won't let go of the harsh grasp it has around your throat.

I just wanted to take the time to dissect these magnificent lyrics that Bob Dylan took the time to write for our ears. At this very moment, I can't thank him enough. Let's start with the first verse:

They say everything can be replaced,
Yet every distance is not near.
So I remember every face
Of every man who put me here

The last two lines of the verse are probably the most important lines of the song because it brings everything full circle. It gives the song its meaning. "So I remember every face of every man who put me here," Dylan wrote. It's sort of him wallowing in his pain and being reminded of his past. Dylan made pain so relatable (as it should be) and I think that is what makes this such a great song. We all have a road that led us to where we are now, whether we're in a good position or a bad one. We remember all of the faces and circumstances that caused us to sit in the spot we're currently in. Someone (or in most cases multiple people) has caused us all pain. Someone helped mold us into the people we are today. We have all lost something that hit us to the core ("they say everything can be replaced"). When Dylan wrote the first line of the song, I like to believe that he was trying to convince himself that everything will be okay. You know, as in, 'hey, I can get it back'. The second line is a reminder that everywhere the road takes us will not be close by or easy to get to but if you want your emptiness to be replaced by happier times, you have to go the distance. 

I see my light come shining
From the west unto the east.
Any day now, any day now,
I shall be released

In the chorus, Dylan begans to look at things a little differently. The key word in the first line is "my". He didn't say he sees "a" light, he said "I see my light come shining..." This small difference gives the song a major concept. Dylan isn't looking to be saved, he's doing the saving. His own light will save him, not some magical moment where the sun rays shine out among the clouds. The second line is a continuation of the first and some thought is needed to decipher the meaning. He says his light is shining from the west unto the east. Astronomy teaches us that the sun rises in the east and sets in the west; this means that Dylan is looking for an ending or a setting. The third line is more of a exclamation, ("Any day now, any day now!") where Dylan is shouting that his time is coming when he shall be released. He's suffered enough and any moment, all of the pain he's experienced shall be released. He will no longer be imprisoned.

They say every man needs protection,
They say every man must fall.
Yet I swear I see my reflection
Some place so high above this wall

 The first two lines are self-explanatory. We all must fall (or at least that's what "they" say) and deal with hardships. Dylan uses these lines as a way to express his doubt in what "they" say (whoever "they" are) because he believes that he is better than what they say. Every man may have to fall but he sees the better in himself and the high position that he is meant to be in. Shouldn't we all think like Dylan? The walls he can see his reflection high above are the same walls that are imprisoning him. It is likely his pain and tribulations. Dylan is saying that he is better than his pain, therefore any moment now he's going to be released from it all so he can continue his ride above it all. He follows the verse with the chorus as an emphasis on his upcoming freedom.

Standing next to me in this lonely crowd,
Is a man who swears he's not to blame.
All day long I hear his voice shouting so loud,
Crying out that he was framed

We are all (or have been) that man in the big lonely crowd. None of us believe that we are to blame for our current situations. When bad things hit us all at once, we don't like to think that we somehow caused it (I'm not saying that we do always cause it). We scream and cry how much we don't deserve this and how much more we should have. We believe we've been framed or there must have been a typo in the writings of our stars because we've been nothing but good. Notice that Dylan also states that he's in a "lonely crowd". This means that he knows that he's not the only one who feels the way he does. He is not the only imprisoned soul. There are a lot of us out there. We're all in the same crowd yet we're all just as lonely. It's a bit of an oxymoron. Dylan ends the song with the chorus, just to remind us that any day his freedom is coming.


I want to thank Bob Dylan for giving me hope that things can get better. I understand by him saying "any day now," that it may not actually be soon, but the day will come. The sun has to set on all pain and all imprisonment and the day will come when it's time for your light to shine its brightest. We can fall and we can feel like we need someone by our side to cover us when things get bad but we have to keep seeing ourselves as being higher than our problems. We have to believe that we shall be released...

Jeff Buckley covers this song like no one else ever could.





Tuesday, June 3, 2014

One Winged Siren

Broken and cold
Or is it broken and old? 
It's an emergency and no one's around
No one's coming & I can't be found
The air is freezing
And my soul's pleading
I want so badly to go numb
But somehow the pain is fun
It let's me know I'm alive

But, how I don't want to be
I'd rather die than suffer a broken wing
Flight is impossible
Or is it implausible? 
Either way no one answered the call
No one heard my fall
No one answered to the sirens
My breathing's getting heavy and lighter
God knows, I've never been much of a fighter

So, here I am getting older yet nothing changes
I'm drowning in my own weight
Or is it my own burdens?
From down here it all looks the same
High up and impossible to reach
But something's telling me I should practice what I teach
Maybe I can save that for another day
Maybe when things start to go my way
Whatever that means...

I already crashed and I'm waiting to burn
Maybe some flames would do me some good
Maybe the flames will catch their attention
I doubt that 
They're all consumed in their world
And all I have is this one winged siren
All I have is a piece of broken hope
But somehow that has to be enough
Because if it's not...