I wrote out my life and eulogy at 18 years old. The most irrational of which was to publish three books before the age of 30. I was young and foolish and needed to prove that I was an author. I spent winter nights in Melbourne working through the night typing on the keyboard till my fingers went numb from the cold as there was no heater in the room. I hated myself every single day for not writing fast enough. But being an author wasn’t about writing books but communicating ideas.
My ideas were lost in the process of hitting daily word count goals. In secret, I worked on short stories but I kept hidden from the world as I was afraid of myself. I was afraid my abilities and I sought to disintegrate my works by writing under different identities. I left all my short stories incomplete and unpublished. But there was one short story that lingered and haunted me.
It was The Scarlet Throne, but even which, I refused to name it it’s real name and called it “The Prince” when I initially published the first three chapters on my blog. The Scarlet Throne trilogy is the real deal and the legacy I will leave behind on earth. I will be working on this project for the next six years. I will be writing next trilogy (The Scarlet Throne) set in a science fiction dystopian post-nuclear holocaust universe with encoded with ideologies from French and Chinese philosophers from Feb 2018 to Feb 2024. The Hourglass Trilogy is available on Amazon.
Releasing a book on virtual space is like releasing an entity to the universal conciousness. It is scary. It’s akin to exposing my soul to the world, it’s worse than exposing myself nude in public. It’s exhibitionistic to the maximum level as it’s not just my body, but my heart and soul is released to the world. I don’t enjoy that particular feeling of being “exposed” or what the french call it, exposé. It’s a rather vunerable emotion. It’s like confessing my love to a secret crush after years of playing hide and seek. It’s like being a child all over again.
Flashback to the memory. I am in the school canteen, sitting alone. A girl comes up to me and tells me she likes me. She uses her belt to hit my arm playfully. She wacks my arm a few times as she gives a sadistic smile on her face. She was in pure delight, that she looks escatically pleased to inflict pain and red bruises on my exposed arm. As a socially awkward almost mute bookworm nerdish kid I was, I let her take control in total silence and obedience. She laughed and said this is how they treated animals. We humans deserve the pain we inflict on others. I could not move and I was rooted on the spot, on the seat. Her words lingered into my conciousnessness and the memory of which became permanently etched in my mind. Ever since then, I inflicted pain on those I loved.
Writing the Hourglass Series has been strangely theraputic. I am rather mixed. I hate and love it. But it would be considered my best work to date in my perspective. However, my best friend had advised me to work on The Scarlet Throne series (based on The Prince working title) to turn it into novel form. I can always continue the Hourglass Series at a later date. The Scarlet Throne would be my magnum opus, he said. I agreed. In fact, the visions of The Scarlet Throne is what penerates my dreams and visions in everything I see and do. It is probably the most soulful work what I will ever bring to fruitation if I start working on it.
I am seriously considering to stay in New York for a few months to work on my writings, attending theater and dance classes. Only by elevating my skills, I could then, elevate my art. I am in contemplation at the moment, but I am afraid of the person I would become as well. My heart calls for me to go forth towards New York and find the best teachers in the artistry I wish to pursue. Yet, I am in fear that I will no longer see myself in the mirror again. Every morning, I wake up nude and look at myself in the full length mirror before weighing myself to check my equilibrium.
I am unsure if I can do the same or start to hate myself all over if I go over to New York. I am afraid of losing myself, losing my mind, losing control. Or will it be the opposite – I will refine and gain more control over my identity through the pursuit of love, beauty and knowledge?
For this, I am at an artistic crossroads. I will be on a two weeks break to find these answers.
A BEAUTIFUL UNDERCOVER AGENT, Jessica, codename Purple Python, is sent to Singapore to prevent the expansion plans of Wilmar Enterprises in Asia under the White Queen’s orders. Jessica identifies the chief financial officer of an equity fund as her key target. Garrett is interested in investing in Wilmar’s Asia Fund and Jessica is tasked with derailing his plans. As Jessica works on getting close to Garrett, she finds herself becoming interested in Garrett for more than his business documents. Jessica engages in an internal tug-of-war as her feelings for Garrett deepen and she begins to question her loyalties. Will she betray the woman who saved her from the streets or will she sacrifice her chance at a soul mate?
Purple Python is a standalone full-length novel part of the HOURGLASS series of corporate espionage undercover femme fatale agents. The series explores about finding one’s identity in the backdrop of capitalism with dominance and submission themes, romance, love and betrayal entwined with undercover spies on a mission to serve the greater good.
Hi Purple Python, I am officially sick of you. I see you every day and you haunt me so much in my dreams to complete you that I had taken on some characteristics of the person I am not by losing myself completely in you. I detest you, and when you scream for my attention I want to slap the living daylights out of you. You are the marathon race I ran for nine months that soon, to be birthed into a monster for the world. As much as I had tried to tear you apart from me, you had penetrated into my pores like the sun. I hate you. Be gone. Get out of my body. For I will publish you and ensure you will be apart from me so I will never ever together with you again.
In the Effective Executive, I learnt that an executive can perform the functions of 200 people. Given the automation of technology, this is true. Given the easy availability of outsourcing – this is true too. I find most of the work I perform is automated by processes and are on scheduled releases. For example, I could schedule to release my blog posts every week. I could write five posts in one day and set it on an automated release schedule. I could effectively delegate someone to write my blog and release it too. But that’s not the point of my blog as it is a personal blog so that would entirely make no sense to outsource something I enjoy doing, so I keep myself on this task.
But there is many things I do not enjoy doing – like repetitive work. They are functions that could be automated. The number of vendors that I have engaged this year is astonishing even to myself, my phone rings non stop on some mornings by vendors – banks, deliveries, appointments. My calendar has a recurring automated prompts to do weekly tasks or monthly routines. The more I engage with the concept of time, the more I find that my time on earth is too short, and too brisk for what I want to truly accomplish. I have be content that I will only produce a fraction of what I would like to do in this brisk stay on earth.
Even the countries I will potentially be able to visit is limited by my actual life span. I met an American tourist in a cafe in Beijing who said he had visited Greece 30 times. He is 72, divorced with no children. I wonder if in my later years I would try to repeat my fond memories by revisiting the same location. Or will I be contented with a lifelong companion with a house by a lake in my later years, doing gardening and keeping ten cats. Or will I even have family members or friends in my later years, or will I be able to dance the way I do now. In times of my quiet contemplation of life, I look to my grandparents for solace.
As much as I could outsource and delegate the functions of my life till I could spend each moment in the pursuit of pleasure, I am met with the existential crisis that still, the greatest fulfillment I find joy in is to bring out the best in others around me, and to perform in my dance and song.
When I watch my grandparents, in their advanced years, traveling on cruise ships and visiting casinos to spend their solitary remaining years – I am filled with a kind of despondence that one day I may meet this end. Will I be indulgent in seeking for temporary highs from my winnings by an electronic machine? I have a romantic ideal that I will spend my remaining years writing books, painting and drawing, and if I could move my limbs, still dancing to no nights end. But it will all be too lonely if I had not found a companion by then. For in one’s advanced years, it is no longer about young love, but an old familiar love that one is content to have by their side in their moments of joys and sadness.
My third book is almost ready at this stage. I wonder if I look back at my life now 50 years on, I may have a few hundred published books by then, maybe I will be well known, maybe no one will remember me. Maybe I might disappear from the face of earth without a trace for history is continuously rewritten by those who want us to believe in their truths instead of the real truth of what it is.
I will never stop writing the truth for it is my duty and service to humanity to only speak the truth and no less. Even if I lose my popularity for revealing the true nature of what it is, I am willing to sacrifice my egoistical self to be secure and safe. Why will I be lesser than what I am? Or be dishonest with myself when I could, in full honesty, life my live to the accords of the highest fulfillment of what it is meant to be?
What is my unique voice in dance – it is an art of storytelling through the movement of our bodies. Our bodies are our canvas on which we can unfold our artistry in non-verbal communication. Most communication does not reside in words but in actions. Dance, like language, has an extensive vocabulary and by extending our knowledge of dance styles and repertoire we can develop our bodies to move to the music in a way that is distinctive to our personality. By attending classes by different teachers from different dance backgrounds, our dance vocabulary increases, and a number of moves we can execute to various music take on a new form.
Dance is about releasing one’s soul from the constraints of our physical body. Dance allows us to touch the spiritual side of our being. To immerse in dance, we have to engage our heart and soul in the beat and rhythm and lose ourselves completely to the music. The music is the master, our bodies are slaves to the bliss. In performance art, dance and theatre are similar artforms, in the sense that a dancer engages the audience into their performance and the audience feels inspired to start dancing along.
Partner dancing, however, is about dancing with a partner. The audience does not matter. It is about connection and chemistry of two different dancers coming together to paint a shared canvas to the music. It is possible to dance with anyone, even with someone who had not learnt dance. It’s about adapting to the scene partner. In theatre, we call the person who is interacting with us the “scene partner”. We have to ride on each other energies to deliver a dialogue. Partner dancing is about the dialogue between bodies in a non-verbal communication. Chemistry can be cultivated over time, and the connection is about engaging our fame and core. The more one dances with different types of partners, it increases the dancer’s adaptability to the stylistic choice of movements – and expands the usage of dance vocabulary that could be executed – from simple basic moves to complicated figures.
The fundamentals of dance are the baseline of what differentiates a good or great dancer. It isn’t about having more flashy moves or styling but it is about maintaining core fundamentals – poise, balance, core, flexibility, strength. Like being athletic, a dancer can take it professionally or nonprofessionally by choosing to train their fundamentals daily and keep to a diet and fitness regime. The main instrument of a dancer is his body. A dancer has to listen to his body to prevent injuries. A dancer has to understand their body to stretch their imagination to execute moves one day at a time – dancers aren’t born, they are made.
Dance is a meritocratic sport, the more time and effort one spends on practising with regular coaching and feedback, the more expansive the dancer becomes. There are no limitations to the art of dance, it is a lifelong learning process. Dance trends and fashions fade in and out, but once a person reaches into the heart of being a dancer, they will forever be a dancer.
In my dance, I aim to communicate my soul song to fulfil on love and beauty to the world. I want to inspire others to dance and partake in the joys of life with no limits. I want others who watch me be freed from their constraints and join me in my endless pursuit for self-actualization in freedom and happiness. I hope that one day, in my idealism and utopianism, that people from different cultures will dance together and end all wars and suffering. For we have a shared humanity and there is no need for violence when there are enough resources for everyone. For this, I will dance to the end of my days.
Some quotes from The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde that is stuck in my head. I had finally finished the book after reading it over a period of a few months and I did a marathon stretch of reading it on a flight in between napping and reading. Much of the book is implied, and one has to guess what happens between the lines.
The procurement of sensations and replicating those sensations of pleasure.
From ugliness one can find beauty.
She had everything and I had nothing.
I had reevaluated my soul while reading the book, and from my revelations, I had found the ugliness of my corrupted soul and salvaged it from the brink of its demise. There were many of times I felt like Dorian Gray when I looked at the portrait of my reflection in the mirror. I wanted to slice it, cut it, kill it. There was so much angst that I abhorred myself deeply that I hated the way I looked. I no longer feel this way about myself this year. I had found my happiness in the pursuit of the arts and literature. I had fuelled my wanderlust by travelling to historic places and immersing myself in the theatre. When in London, I watched seven shows on the West End in one week. When in New York, I watched a line of shows at Broadway. When in Beijing, I watched the acrobats perform death-defying moves that could send one crippling should they fall by accident. I watched them perform world class acts like Cirque du Soleil in an amusement park. An artist can only create and further their own art by continuous exposure to other arts. My schedule is filled to the brim that my assistant thinks I am the reincarnate of madness.
It is true that it may be frivolous to indulge in endless travels and pursuit of the meaning of life. Looking at the hallways of the forbidden city that probably once upon a time, they walked through the same stone steps to serve the emperor of China as a scholar-official, and took the imperial examinations to be entitled to a lifetime of servitude to the country. That we had left the motherland to explore the world in Chinese junk boats. That I had inherited the same genes of exploration that I am unable to stay in one spot for too long without feeling an incessant compulsion to climb a mountain or swim in the azure sapphire waters of a Greek island. That I may never settle, that the future is uncertain. That my goal of becoming a published author of three books as I had always wanted to do in my life since I was a child – is almost at its final fruition.
What is the future? I have no clue. I had achieved so much before the age of thirty, that one may look at my track record and wonder how is it even possible to be so diverse in one’s rate of artistic production. I had lived my life on the edge of an adrenaline high fuelled by caffeine and lust. Lust. That’s the dirty word that is disguised by passion. My passion for life is ruled by my lust for life. I hunger so much for the very things I know I can’t have, imaginary worlds that I can never live in, and create realities for the future so they may not walk or suffer in my footsteps. In my ultimate exploration of my soul, I had acted in a solo production of over a hundred videos for five years running, written in all honesty about my insights into my three novels, danced the truth of my emotions in my poetry and movement. I had given myself completely to my art. At the end of it all, I may never be recognised or remembered. I may be forgotten like a speck of dust in the insignificance of this universe.
But I still do what I do each day in hope of a better tomorrow. This is my promise, and the reason I keep myself alive and well. To fill the world with my eternal sunshine of love, beauty and knowledge.
Sensory memory is the underlying element of method acting. During classes, our coach told us to tap into our past memories to bring out a certain emotion into the monologue. It has to be hidden, and not revealed to the audience. The audience cannot know which memory we are tapping on to bring out the characterisation and emotional undercurrent and inner fire to the performance. It is a underlying inner life that is unique to the actor. Hence two actors when given the same script, will enact the scene entirely different from each other based on their sensory memory that they bring forth to the performance.
A question was posed – how does a child actor tap into his sensory memory when he has not experienced life in it’s entirely? It boils down to authenticity. In method acting, the general rule is not to tap into any sensory memory that happened the past seven years. It is no wonder most actors hit their prime towards their thirites – leveraging on their sensory memory that they had gained over the course of years.
I had made the mistake of tapping into recent memories when I started out my YouTube channel and it seriously messed me up. Now, I no longer tap on recent memories, but the allowance is that we are allowed to tap into recent body sensations (pain, cold, pleasure, hot). When I write my books, I use the same technique in writing. I will repeat the motion of my characters while writing. Eg: Picking up a fork. I will imagine picking up a fork to cut a fish. If my character has to do a vigous workout and then start a dialogue. I will do the same, do a walkabout and a workout and go back to writing the dialogue to get the sense of how a person speaks after a workout. If I am unable to act out a scene, I will watch videos of actors enacting similar scenes or tap into my sensory memory. I would say Purple Python is the best book I had written as I had only learnt to apply the techniques I learnt over the past few years and crystalise it into a complete narrative.
I am glad to have been given a rich chaotic teenage life that I can tap on to write my works and enact my rebellion. I am no longer that crazy, or full of madness as I once was. I would say I had reached a pretty zen stage of my life where my number one priorty is my family followed by my friends. They ground me and stablise my random bursts of creative energy. Without them, I would lose my balance. They help me find myself, and regain the missing parts of my identity to form a complete whole me by just accepting the way I am. I was never able to dance the way I do before – only this year I had finally unleashed my inner soul song to be the passionate dancer that fires the dance floor.
Yesterday someone called me a “beast on the dance floor.” I was being filmed dancing. I am getting filmed regularly by dance patrons, as they watch me across the floor. To admit, I had never receive this level of “dance” attention since actively competing when I was a teenager. Only now, I had rediscovered my inner fire and happiness in dance. That I dance not to applease others, or be someone else that I am not. But to dance is to be myself, and dance for my own self actualisation, and the greatest enemy is myself. There is no one else who can stop me from being the dancer that I am. For this, I am able to be completely at ease even when dancing in front of thousands of people, it’s a completely natural act to me. The nervousness disappates and I am at one with the universe while on stage.
Sometimes I think
That maybe, long before we were born
Because even when our bodies are apart
It feels like our hearts are side by side
There is a line of thought that we have a soul mate – we shared one body and spirit before reincarnation on earth and that body split into two – male and female. As soulmates belong to the same body in their previous life, and in meeting in this life the affinity and connection feel like “hearts are side by side.” Physically, soul mates can be apart and still feel each other heartbeats. In this line of thought, it is stating that love and affinity can transcend distance and time.
I always, always
A voice calling my name, my name
Please don’t cry anymore
I can feel your love
There is another thought – which is we can hear our soul mate from a distance. In their distress, we have a sense that we need to be there for them. It is unspoken communication beyond the physical, going into the spiritual. It is almost telepathic. I had experienced this level of affinity with my best friend, and we are telepathic in our communication. That by being deeply connected and bonded with a person, you know what the person moods and emotions are even from a distance.
At some point I realised
That we were born apart
And because of that
We probably feel incomplete
As we pray for the same happiness
We’re carving the same wounds into our hearts
The key lyrics here is “carving the same wounds into our hearts.” What does that mean? There are opposite ends of emotions – happiness and sadness, pain and pleasure, love and hate. With intense love, comes intense loathing. This is the price of love, that there will be arguments, there will be wounds, there will be scars. It is all in the pursuit of happiness. When things are not right – there will be incompletions. I had mentioned in my previous post that in ancient China, the belief is that reincarnated lovers are those who had incompletions in their past life to be reincarnated into this life to face the same tribunals to make things right or they will be reincarnated again in a karmic cycle.
I’ll keep, keep calling
So that you never, never
Please don’t cry anymore
I won’t leave you alone or anything
I always, always
A voice calling my name, my name
Please don’t cry anymore
I can feel your love
I’ll love you
I love you, you
Even if time
I’ll still love you
Sometimes I think
That maybe if we’re reborn
Interestingly the end of the song lyrics, she mentions being reborn by sharing “one life”. Which means two souls meet again and form a bond to become one complete whole in their next life. This song is a beautiful portrayal of what a soulmate means in the metaphorical sense. It is not physical to us to see our souls, or feel souls or even prove or quantify love, but the very emotion and affinity that is there between lovers could very well transcend the physical in the literary sense is what makes love beautiful to seek for.
She is releasing a novel (Hourglass Series) yearly and weekly YouTube videos. She does experimental flash fiction on this blog, along with song, movies and character analysis using historical and literature references.
One Million Views on Scarlet Queen YouTube (2015)