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Life is an Open Book!

by Sierra Ginae. 4 months ago in humanity

Describing my lifelong passion of Storytelling.

My superheroes from my series, The Vanyan Soldas!

My passion has been and will always be storytelling. I could create a story out of anything.

I began to like storytelling at the age of Six. Recollecting my earliest memory, I created two characters in my head. My first story characters ever, two boys named “Ball” and “Doll”.

Me redrawing my 4-year-old masterpiece.

2002. It was so long ago that I have no idea where the concept of my character ‘Doll’ came from, but I coined ‘Ball’ from the character Mike Wasowski from Monsters Inc.

Looks similar, right? No? Well, 6-year-old me thought so!

Anyway, I would do this weird thing by having them go on adventures, and my idea of “adventures” consisted of me opening Magazines and drawing them on every page, coupled with a thought bubble above their heads to tell you what they were thinking. If there were a picture of a model on the beach, I would draw the two characters hiding in the woman’s bikini to get out of the sun. If there were a photo of a Bottle of Sprite, I’d draw the two characters swimming in the soda for fun. If it were an ad for a mattress, I’d have the two characters sleeping due to their travels. That’s how the story of these two characters went in my head, but to my Grandmother, it was me drawing all over her newly mailed magazines. Not cool!

When my mother noticed my interest in drawing, she bought me a notebook, along with Archie comic books for me to read. [There was a new comic book every week at Walmart and Kroger, located right in the check-out line.] Watching almost every Disney movie there was, for some odd reason, was the first time I took an interest in personalities and characters outside of my two-dimensional “Ball and Doll” duo. For more unexplained reasons, it never sparked to create female characters until I read the Archie comics. This series was about the adventures of two young adults who were best friends yet openly competed for the affection of one boy. Not kid-friendly as I thought now that I look back at it, but everything remained PG-13. No sex scenes, cursing, or fighting. The most was the leading character, Archie, covered in Lipstick after receiving multiple kisses from both girls.

I was introduced to Betty, a middle-class Blonde with a bubbly personality who expressed her love to Archie by calling him a little too much and writing him love letters and emails!

2006 Betty Comic Book Article.

I was also introduced to Veronica, a high-maintenance girl with a rich father that showed her affection to Archie by giving him unlimited access to the pool-house in her mansion and showering Archie with expensive gifts that Betty couldn’t afford.

2004 Veronica Comic Book series!

These weren’t the only characters in the series! You had Archie’s best friend, Jughead, known as the comic relief you could spot during every panel eating up a storm!

Or Archie’s bully and football jock, Big Moose, known for roughing up Archie and every boy in his path, but only being sweet towards his girlfriend, Midge.

I was hooked. The Archie Series lit the fuse in my creative mind, so I began creating my own comics. Right hand on the Bible as if I’m in court, I’ve filled Five 120 page notebooks from age 7 to 11 with comics, but every time I finished a book, there was something that would coincidentally happen to my notebooks to where there I couldn’t show my work to others.

For example, I finished my first comic book, which was left at my mother’s first home when we moved.

At 8, I finished my second comic book, left it at my aunt’s apartment, and before I could retrieve it, my uncle left his food on the stove and left the apartment without cutting the stove off. Their entire apartment burned and my aunt brought me back what was left of my story after I repeatedly begged for it back. Burned in my memory, she brought me a charred book with every page burned from the bottom up. I cried my eyes out.

The third book I finished at 9, and I placed it in the closet of the new apartment that I and my mother stayed in to make sure nothing happened to it. I had a box filled with my childhood memories (My Nintendo, school yearbooks, family pictures, etc.) When we moved, my book somehow got lost in storage. Unbelievable.

The fourth book I finished at 11. “I’m older, now. There’s no way I’m losing this book!” was what I thought every time I drew in the notebook my father purchased for me. Inspired by Total Drama Island, I created a story of 15 random strangers who were called to stay in one home and compete for $100,000. Another book finished. Now my father was a lot more responsible with keeping things in our home, so I didn’t think he would lose it. I’m sure you know what happens next. I told my mom that I finally kept up with a comic book and that I’d show her the story I completed when she took me to my father's. One day, she takes me to my dad’s, I go inside and look in the drawer where I always stored it. It’s wasn’t there. I ask my father where it is, he tells me he cleaned out his closet room drawers and had no idea where he placed the items that were inside.

That was it. I said I was never writing another comic and hadn’t done it since.

But I wasn’t uninspired when it came to storytelling. I wanted to write more, but I wanted people to read my work. I wondered what website I could write stories on so that strangers could check out my work. My family is going to naturally tell me that my stories are good out of support, and I wanted fresh eyes from strangers so that I could get honest feedback. By this time, I was 13 and found myself in a fanbase with girls of the boyband Mindless Behavior, and within that fanbase, I and other girls would write stories about the stars! I befriended some of them and decided to write a story involving one of the group members falling in love with a girl from another band.

This was my first ever story, Denial. It received almost 100,000 views! [Read at your own risk. It’s a cringy 13-year-old nightmare!]

After realizing that I received almost 100,000 views, I wrote my second book, Mentality, which was about a girl who's placed into a mental home by her parents after they suspect that their daughter was trying to commit suicide. Still 13, I lacked a creative bone in my body. I stole this story concept from Angelina Jolie’s first breakout movie, Girl Interrupted, but I told everyone I wanted to put my spin on it.

This one received 1 million views!

I put a big plot twist at the end to catch my readers off guard and garnered what one of my favorite feedbacks ever. Back when I was on Tumblr, I had a ton of reaction videos from other members stored in my archives. Unfortunately, most of the videos have since been deleted, but here are three that managed to survive the updates of the website! [These videos were posted in 2013, in case you were wondering about the way we dressed and acted. We were all such young kids!]

Though I was young, these were the first moments that made me say, “I think I could do this writing thing!” When I noticed that people more and more people outside of the fanbase began to take an interest in my readings, I kept going. Before I knew it, I was receiving the views that I wanted. Throughout my freshman up until my senior year, I wrote a total of 16 books, all resulting from me spending every bit of my free time writing. To date, these are my highest-read books.

DR. AUGUST - 7.3 million Wattpad readers + 120,000 likes! (I advise against reading this one. It's about a sex therapist who falls in love with two different women, and you can tell that it was written by a 16-year-old. CRINGE!)

BATON ROUGE - 3.4 million Wattpad Reads + 171,000+ likes! (A story about how two teenagers from opposite worlds fell in love!)

Gangland - 1.6 million Wattpad reads + 56,000 likes! (A story about how a young man from a good neighborhood moves out of town with his murderous cousin and is dragged on a terror of a ride as he's forced to stay silent during these heinous acts.)

After writing for that long though, I decided to give it a break. I was in college and was suffering through depression at the time, so my motivation to write was gone. I was in a different city, away from my friends, most of my family, I had zero desire to even get out of the bed. After a 3-year-haitus, I revisited my old stories and realized that they were not only too graphic with no purpose, but that there were plot holes I needed to fix. So, in 2014, I came back and wrote Baton Rouge. A rich girl that was from the Philippines, and a poor boy from the Slums of Louisiana, a couple that formed a bond due to the coldness and misunderstandings of their parents.

But even writing this story at 19, I had mistakes. I meant to write my leading male character as a boy who often enjoyed mutual drunk sex at a young age with other girls his age + women that considered themselves cougars, but my writers mistook this as me writing my main character as a rapist, which was huge error on my behalf because this assumption meant that I did not execute my story properly. There were constant misspellings and plot holes, which were the same issues my previous stories. I took another hiatus to create and construct a story that I wouldn’t release before I found someone who could help correct my errors, or basically, a literary agent. My love for writing slowly morphed into a love for screenplays the more I got into TV shows like Game of Thrones, Breaking Bad, Lost, The Wire, etc. I wanted to write more than just “better” stories. I want to create screenplays so that the audience could see everything I picture in my head for my characters. I want to tackle movie norms that haven’t been tackled and create movies that aren’t sensitized due to “Cancel Culture”. (Cancel culture is the term defined as being cancelled by the masses for creating a project, song, or saying a statement that goes against what society defines as the norm.) I found myself not only criticizing TV shows, but constantly pointing out errors that Hollywood had as well.

For example, during The Walking Dead, why is every zombie the same height, weight, and race if the entire world was infected with this deadly disease? Diversity in this situation isn't subject, it's a fact. White Americans aren't the only infected human beings, y'know?

The Walking Dead. (2014.)

Why do actors in sex scenes cover themselves with blankets?

Friends With Benefits. (2011.)

After a hot night with your spouse, quick fling, whoever, no ones putting a sheet over their sweaty body! I know they’re trying to censor the nudity between the actors/actresses but come on, you’re looking for some fresh air, not to warm up as if you’ve been out in zero degree weather?

Why do couples who kiss the next morning after waking up together never cringe at the smell of each morning breath?

I know it doesn’t smell like freshly baked cookies from either party at 8am? And you sure as heck don’t want to smell my breath after I wake up, let me tell you!

And to my fellow millennials, remember the days where we could laugh at ourselves and pretty much everyone else without worrying about outrage? When it was actually okay to laugh at ourselves and others? Remember when the Iconic movie, Mean Girls, managed to joke about every race, their sexuality and their stereotypes?

How Ms. Norbury assumed that the Black Student was the new student from Africa?

The classic line about Janice Ian's gay best friend, Damian?

What about the Asian nerds?

And the stereotype that Black Girls in high school were unfriendly?

Or what about Regina George's homophobic, yet iconic rant about Janice being a lesbian with zero proof of this accusation?

Not only do I want to revive humor, but also want to introduce a side of realism into Hollywood with my writing. Leaving in actors and actresses sneezing, yawning, burping, farting, etc. in scenes, that sort of thing. It's natural and hilarious. These type of things in a movie makes you relate to characters on a personal level because it's what the people around us do. It's what we all do. We all laugh at one another whether we want to admit it or not!

But why exactly is storytelling my passion?

It’s a literal escape from reality. I, the creator, control every aspect of the world that I write.

I create how the world operates. I can make the world as glamourous, futuristic, or dilapidated as I want, as long as it fits the plot.

I can change and rearrange the laws in the world that I set and make those laws as light or dark as I want. I can have it to where eating meat in a vegetarian world is punishable by death, as long as it fits the plot.

Something I’ve noticed in superhero movies is that there are rarely any that cover how it was humanly possible for those heroes to receive their superpowers in what’s supposed to be the "real" world? If it’s the movie is a fantasy world there’s no need for a logical explanation, but if you woke up with superpowers the next day in the real world, there has to be a reason why. For example, Thor from Captain America obtains the strength of his hammer from lightning in the sky, but what in his body gifted him this strength? In the 2002 Spiderman, Peter Parker is bitten by a radioactive spider, but what in his body was able to create what’s not in any other human body? I guess these questions fall in line with overthinking with a movie plot, I can admit. Superheroes do have a life outside of saving the world, so why are there rarely any that cover this?

Since I have so many questions, what’s stopping me from creating my own story/screenplay that provides those answers? Why not create my own story with my own superheroes?

Like a boy who develops fire powers due to his habit of eating excessively hot and spicy food?

My character, Justin, from my superhero series.

A girl who accidentally swallows a piece of gum, develops the ability to stretch her body parts for miles.

My character, Mona, from my superhero series.

A boy who goes skydiving that suddenly develops angel wings while falling in the air?

My character, Damien, from my superhero series.

A boy, bitten by a tiger, who scares his nurses away after morphing into an animal in his hospital room?

My character, Kevin, from my superhero series.

And a boy, known as a player at his school, who develops electricity based off of a dare?

My character, Zack, from my superhero story.

[I guess I still got a little bit of drawing skills from my comic book days!]

If the world had superheroes, wouldn’t the president and citizens take photos with them? Wouldn’t law enforcement enlist the help of superheroes during cases they can’t handle? Wouldn’t they be called out to stop world disasters like hurricanes, tornados, or maybe help with getting down to the bottom of what’s known as the deadliest virus in U.S. History, the Coronavirus?

And what's a superhero story without villains?

Like a magician who stumbles upon a wand that warps reality?

My character, Trish, from my superhero story.

A girl with indestructible hair?

My character, Naomi, from my superhero story.

A male Mermaid?

My character, Dale, from my superhero story.

...whose girlfriend is an ice princess?

My character, Chloe, from my superhero story.

..and a kid with no powers, but is set on joining his friends for revenge?

My character, Steel, from my superhero story.

Where did these young adults get these superpowers in the story get their powers? Well, you'd have to read my story to find out. Hehe.

Unfortunately, passion isn’t enough for support in the writer’s world. Without a direct connection to someone in the film industry or a literary agent, my chances of getting noticed is extremely difficult, but I still want people to read what I have in store. Until I can get my foot through the door, I would love to share my passion of writing with everyone I can! I would like to release the chapters on a certain day, every week, for Vocal Members to read and enjoy as if they were watching a TV series themselves! I would like to do this the second Vocal creates a comment section so I could read the positive, negative, and hilarious reactions from any readers I may have. Ultimately, I want to introduce my world to know about my passion for storytelling.

But for now, I'd like one of my first steps to be with starting by introducing my story, The Vanyan Soldas, to readers everywhere! Beginning with inviting Vocal Readers with me on my journey!

My attempt at a book cover.

NOTE: The plot, premise and characters to my story has already been copyrighted through the registration of Copyright.Gov! It wouldn’t be smart to steal the concept or rights to my plot in regards to my characters and outline.

humanity

Sierra Ginae.

💜

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