A Milestone for my Memoir

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I have shared that I found a publisher for my book, and that I now have an editor that working towards getting my manuscript ready to publish.

As of today, I have gone through all the changes of the first edit and made some changes of my own. I believe this is the best the memoir has been since the beginning. I sent back the updates, and I look forward to moving closer to publication. For those that have followed my blog for some time, you know that my memoir has been over two years in the making, and to finally have a publisher has been the best feeling in the world.

When it goes to publication, I will offering the book on a tier of my Patreon account. It will be great to finally share my entire story, at least so far.

Update of Other Writing Projects

I also wanted to use this blog post to update my writing projects are at various levels of completion.

The Rise of the Nephilim

The Rise of the Nephilim is the first book of a series that I am starting in the fantasy fiction genre. I am really excited to be way ahead of schedule with a 60K word count in May. I was supposed to start it this week, but at the turn of a new month I was already ready to start writing, and it caught like wildfire. I plan on finishing the first draft by August, which would be way ahead of schedule. There is still so much to write! I am excited about it, and after I edit the prologue, I will be offering it on a tier of my Patreon account.

Angel on the Ward

It has been about a month since I finished the first draft of my novella entitled Angel on the Ward. This was the first piece I wrote in the third-person omniscient but with a single POV. I already have a copy editor ready to look at this piece, and what I need now is the money. It always seems to work itself out, but right now, this project is in the editing phase. The hope is to use this short novella to help boost my Patreon account so that I can continue to grow a following.

Memory of Shane

Perhaps the most frustrating this is that I have a fantastic screenplay (totally my opinion) and I can’t find an agent. No agency takes unsolicited material, so I am stuck trying to go a different rout–look for a producer that will be interested in my screenplay and to enter screenplay competitions. If you know anyone in the business (Hollywood), please let me know, I want to get my screenplay out there in the world. I will be completing the first draft of the novel this year.

That is my update. I plan on writing a lot of blog posts the rest of the week so that I can make sure that things pick up on this blog.

Always Keep Fighting

James

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A Repost – Upgrading The Bipolar Writer Blog – I Need Your Help

Upgrading, and Why it is Important

There was some confusion about how to donate money to the cause, and I wanted to take this opportunity to redo my previous post. I will explain what upgrading means for this blog. These are the ways to donate.

My GoFundMe Page

https://www.gofundme.com/rasing-to-upgrade-the-bipolar-writer-blog&rcid=r01-154734596066-ffeec50b38af4a27&pc=ot_co_campmgmt_w

Now, I had to use my real name for this (I write under my pseudonym James Edgar Skye) so don’t be surprised by the name–David TC. Also, this allows me to show how much has been donated (I will give the running total at the end of the post.

Donate Through PayPal

This is another excellent way to donate, and to do so just press Pay with PayPal and you can choose to give a minimum of $3.00 (you can decide how much based on the number so 3 times would be 3 x 3 and you would donate nine dollars.)

Venmo – 831-287-4369

I don’t mind sharing my number (I have before several times in the past.

Right now we are at $110 total donations which is pretty amazing. Every penny will be going to the upgrade. I thank everyone who has already been a part of this goal. The goal is $325, what it would cost to upgrade for two years. When I reach this goal, I will be taking this page down.

What I am planning on doing is upgrading this blog to the business class. I can do a lot more with sharing the stories of others through this platform. What I want to do is take this blog to the next level. I want to be able to allow others to sell their work on my blog. (It will also help me sell my own work so there is that part of why I would like to upgrade.)

When this blog hit 10,000 (now plus) followers, I was thinking of ways to make it better. My goal is to spread the word about mental illness. Upgrading to a business blog would allow better SEO tools among the many positives of this upgrade. I would love to do it myself, it is my blog after all, but most of my money is going to my memoir. This would benefit any mental health blogger that wants to be a part of this fantastic community my collaborators, and I have created. I want this blog to be so much more and reach so many more amazing people.

Let’s do this together! If you can’t donate please share this blog post on social media. It could make a major difference!

Always Keep Fighting (AKF)

James

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The Bipolar Writer Needs Your Help!

As some of you know (and others don’t) I am ready to publish my memoir! Seriously. I have edited and moved chapters around, and I honestly believe that I prepared for this next step. I have a great cover and manuscript. The issue? Do I self-publish or try to find a publisher?

I have done a lot of research, and I found a company to publish the physical copy of my book. I have watched endless videos on self-publishing on Amazon and other online self-publications. What is right? What is wrong?

I want to do this right because this is my first official novel (and though its non-fiction and I consider myself a fiction novelist) this is important to my brand and me. My memoir The Bipolar Writer is so important to me, so I want to do this right and not rush into something I will regret. I will admit that I am apprehensive about where to go. I thought self-publishing was the right path, but I have doubts. I am turning to my family (YOU) for any advice you can give me.

James

unsplash-logoRémi Walle

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Influences in Writing from The Bipolar Writer

This is not a typical post from The Bipolar Writer, but I wanted to talk about something that seems to come up a lot recently–my writing influences.

The Influences in my Writing

For those that don’t know, I started working on my master’s in October. I am staying within the same area that I was working on with my bachelor’s degree–Creative Writing and English.

The beginning parts focus a lot on finding out what kind of writer I am, learning to read like a writer, and the most important the influences of my own writing. When it comes to reading books I have no specific genre that I conform to, I am happy reading anything from Modernism to Romanticism; I am a fan of literature in general. When it comes to my influences in actual writing I am more defined.

Perhaps the most significant influence in my writing is the works of Edgar Allan Poe (in honor of Poe I used Edgar in my pseudonym James Edgar Skye.) My favorite era in literature is Romanticism, and more specifically I am enamored by Dark Romanticism.

There is not a poem, short story or works of fiction that I am not amazed by the way that Poe writes. I consider Poe one of the most significant wordsmiths of all time. What I am always in awe when I read a piece of his writing and my favorite, of course, is The Raven. That is why as influencers come in my writing I write my fiction in darker Dark Romanticism or at least a more modern version of this sub-genre.

The other influences of my writing come from some of my favorite authors. There is Rowling, King, George R.R. Martin, and James Patterson just to name a few. I identify the most with Ernest Hemingway as a writer, and given his personal history, it makes sense, but his influence can also be found in my fictional writing. The way that Hemingway wrote in succinct and hard prose always drew me to his work, and his novels seemed to be influenced by his personal history. The Sun Also Rises to me is perhaps one of the greatest 20th-century novels to ever be written. I could say that for any of Hemingway’s literary works.

I conder myself a decent writer and I am right there when it comes to being a legit writer. I am still finding myself as a fictional writer, I have the non-fiction voice down, so I will be working towards finding my place in the writing world. I know my future is in fantasy fiction/supernatural and this certainly where my next novel is going.

What prompted this blog post is that I thought that in 2019 I would spend some time talking about writing. It was the original goal of this blog, and while I talk about it every now and writing in my life is so vital to my mental health. I am happiest when I am writing.

What are some of your writing influences? I’d like to hear from my fellow writer bloggers.

Always Keep Fighting

James

Photo Credit:

unsplash-logoKelly Sikkema

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unsplash-logoMikhail Pavstyuk

The Bipolar Writer is Back

aaron-mello-142044-unsplashAn Update on my Writing Projects

It feels terrific to be back.

I am writing again. I took about two weeks of no writing because my creative side was not blending into my regular life. For a while, my mind lost in the darkness, and I was on the fringes of depression. I felt alone. That is normal.

I did come up with a few more chapters for my memoir, I am not sure if they will make the final draft (I am focusing next week on getting my book on Amazon), but when I go to print I could use those chapters. I have a great cover artist, cover design, and some fantastic chapters. I am ready for the future.

I am also working towards (in my next master’s program class) a new book concept over the next ten weeks. My hope is to ready to start writing chapters in two months seem very hopeful. I am also going to try and finish the novel version of my screenplay.

*On a side note: If anyone knows someone in the movie business– agents, managers, or production companies; let me know. I am selling three different screenplays.

It feels excellent to be back on track and with the next week off from my school work, and I am ready to refocus on the blog.

Stay strong in the fight.

Always Keep Fighting

James

Photo Credit:

Aaron Mello

HB Mertz

Defining the Next Step

Words have no power to impress the mind without the exquisite horror of their reality. – Edgar Allan Poe

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What’s Next?

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I am always thinking about what is next for me. I am close to the end of my first year since starting The Bipolar Writer blog (I will be writing an anniversary piece that will be featured on the one year anniversary.) So what is next?

My memoir is in limbo as I am still in search for the right artist that can capture what I want in a cover. The cover is the most important part next to the story when you self-publish. It needs to be right.

I think my next project in the meantime will be starting a new screenplay. I have some ideas of where that would go. I have been working on the beginnings of the story of one of my favorite video games. Getting back to creative writing would be great. It has been a while as I am working on my memoir– a non-fiction piece of work. I also recently began to redo chapters in the novel version of my first screenplay (I kinda did that one backward.) Writing is just something that I need to get back to normal.

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Writing is what I do best, and it really is where I feel my best. I have less than a month before starting my Master’s programs, and I could really get the first act of my next creative work, while at the same time I can work towards finding my artist, finally publishing my memoir, and of course, creating new content here on The Bipolar Writer blog.

Always Keep Fighting (AKF)

James Edgar Skye

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Photo Credit:

Andrew Neel

Max Nelson

Elijah O’Donell

Sharing My Vision for The Bipolar Writer Blog

I hope that each and every one of my fellow bloggers take a much-needed time off this Labor Day weekend. I recently wrote a couple of posts that talked about in small detail my plans for the future of The Bipolar Writer as we enter the one year anniversary of starting this blog. I think I went about it in the wrong way. Yes, I am struggling to upgrade to a business WordPress account, but I didn’t explain why.

 

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My Vision of the Future – The Bipolar Writer Blog

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I started this blog with a premium service here on WordPress. It gave me a domain name, access to the best themes on WordPress, and other important things that seemed important this past September. I never understood that this blog would become so amazing that I would consider upgrading my blog further than the premium service.

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It makes sense that the business plan would be the next logical step for my blog. It has better tools to help me grow my blog, and at the same time– it would help me increase the followers beyond just WordPress. It will give me SEO tools, plug-ins, and integrating Google analytics.

Then There is Why I Want to Grow

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If my plan is successful and I am able to raise enough funds to cover the cost of the WordPress Business plan I plan on expanding my list of contributor bloggers here on The Bipolar Writer. I currently have a family of twenty-two fantastic contributor bloggers that have made this blog into the amazing thing it is today.

I plan to expand to fifty (50) writers by the end of the year, and each will be able to share their experiences with their own mental illness. That is how we end the stigma that surrounds mental illness with shared experiences, I write more about it here: Why do We Fight to End the Mental Illness Stigma?

I plan to make this blog self sufficient in the coming months by adding an Editor position because the high volume of contributors will need another set of eyes. I will upgrade my best contributor blogger to authors so they can add their posts without needing me to edit. It will be the most trustworthy of my group.

Why I Need Donations

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I have been saving every penny for one goal. Publishing my memoir. I have had donations in the past, and those are going towards paying an artist who can create a fantastic cover for me. (I am still having issues with finding an artist who shares my vision.) I just don’t have the funds for the business plan. I have ten days to either get enough donations or stick with my plan in hopes that eventually I will have enough.

Please use this link to donate

So I ask if you can just give $2 that would help so much. If you can provide more, it would be amazing. Regardless, every person that donates will get a special mention in my memoir, and if we reach our goal, each will get a special thank you card from me via email and a mention in a blog post. This will be the last post about this, I do hope we reach the goal. I have never been disappointed by my fellow mental illness bloggers.

James

Always Keep Fighting (AKF)

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Photo Credit:

Simon Migaj

Octavian Rosca

Kaleidico

The History Behind My Screenplay

I wrote this piece in October of last year and I wanted to re-share this post as I work towards getting an agent so that I sell my first screenplay. It’s been on the back burner the last couple of months as I had hoped to place in a screenwriting competition. It didn’t work out but I am determined to sell my screenplay and to finish writing the novel version. As with all things in life patients is the key.

Looking Back on How Memory of Shane Came Into Existence

I thought it was time to talk about my biggest project out there right now, my screenplay entitled Memory of Shane and its subsequent novel that I am writing. This story is really about two years in the making and since I am writing the novel version the idea continues to be ongoing.

The project started as a short story that I wrote for an advanced writing class about two years ago. I never imagined that I would write this story beyond this class because it was a good piece, and there were so many places I wanted to go with it, but the ten-page limit really made me believe that I was done. But, when the opportunity came to choose a story for my second screenwriting class (where our goal was to write the first draft of act one of a full-length screenplay) I jumped at the chance to explore my story again.

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Writing the first act was so amazing. I really got to know the story down to its bones, and I knew the developing it into a screenplay would give me the opportunity to refine my dialogue skill to a new level. In my advanced screenplay class, we finished act two and looked toward the future for act three. I knew by the end of my advanced screenwriting class where I would go in the final act, it would be a few more months until I finished my complete first draft, and of course, there was a long editing period.

But where did this story come from? I will admit the story is a work of fiction, but as any writer will tell you, it is impossible for your real life not to make its way onto the page. The basis of Memory of Shane is a love story between Adriana, the young nineteen-year-old not looking for love and Shane the young writer hoping for his big break. What drove me to even start to write a love story was rooted in what happened in my own personal relationship with my girlfriend at the time in 2007.

I will written several blogs about diagnosis the inception of The Bipolar Writer blog. After leaving the psychiatric ward for the first time there was true chaos in my life.

I was on new medication that I didn’t believe in. I had some idea where my life was heading, and so I was worried about the emotional toll that being in a relationship with me would be for my girlfriend. I loved her, and she was willing to stick it out with me, but I did the unthinkable and ended my relationship in a very Bipolar way. She came to my house and I broke up with her. I was a jerk, there is no getting around that now. Looking back, I know my girlfriend would’ve stuck by with me through the extreme ups and downs, but it just wasn’t fair to her because, as I would find out, 2008 and 2009 were the worst years of my life.

What does this have to do with anything? Well, when writing Memory of Shane I had the opportunity to explore if and how two people could coexist when one of the people in the relationship is bipolar. On some level, I wanted to imagine if a person like me could be in a healthy relationship. I worked so many scenarios in my mind that it gave me the ability to write a story that, at some level, could have been my own life. Our past choices are long gone now, but it’s great as a writer to explore your past through your writing.

It is almost impossible for my own life not to sneak into my writing, and in my screenplay my character Shane does reflect my own experiences with Bipolar One. We both fell in love at the start of our diagnosis although Shane tried to hold on to Adriana. Both Shane and I can trace our symptoms to our teen years. I even wrote a scene where Shane spends days laying down in his bed in complete darkness, I did so many times during my long cycles of depression.

Beyond the diagnosis, both Shane and I tried to take our lives three times, thought Shane was unfortunately successful became a statistic. There was a part of me that, when I wrote Shane’s death in the story, that once and for all that any thoughts of suicide in my own life died with this character. I would no longer walk down that dark path that leads to suicide. It became true​ when I made the decision to end my character Shane’s life, I would lock that part of me away that piece of me forever, and then I decided to start a blog and write memoir. Life is funny like that sometimes, and I have talked extensively about suicide on this blog.

After finishing my full-length screenplay of Memory of Shane it came down to if I would write the novel version. I put so much into this project, could I really do it again? It took months before I could revisit the idea again and eventually I gave in. It will be interesting for me to explore this story once again.

So, there is a little history on my project Memory of Shane.

J.E. Skye


Photo Credit:
unsplash-logoJustin Luebke

unsplash-logoJason Yu

In a Blink of an Eye…

I am in awe, and a few days late.

I have been busy, and all of sudden I look up and my blog has grown both in contributor bloggers and followers. I smile every day by those who take a moment in their busy lives to come to this blog and leave comments, likes, and views.

Never in a thousand years could I ever think when I started this blog in September 2017 that The Bipolar Writer blog would get to 6,000 plus followers. Yet, here we are, and if you are reading this blog post, there is a good chance that you a part of my growing community of like-minded mental health advocates and bloggers.

I am genuinely honored daily by the people making connections to my blog through my own writings and my growing number of contributor bloggers who now call The Bipolar Writer blog a part of their life.

I have shared the stories of others in the mental illness community, and as the blog has grown, I have been able to share so much of myself— something I never thought possible two years ago.

6,000 and growing!

I am so happy that I made the decision to start this blog and I look forward to the continuous growth of this blog. We are all on a rollercoaster that can only go up. So let’s continue the conversation.

Let us end the stigma surrounding mental illness together!

Always keep Fighting.

James Edgar Skye

Photo Credit: unsplash-logoLoïc Fürhoff

Day One

With my struggles recently I wanted to post this blog post that I wrote just after I completed my ten-year anniversary since my first suicide and diagnosis in November of last year. At the time I was only a few months into The Bipolar Writer blog. Looking at this post makes me realize I have come so far in year one. I will always keep fighting.

Day One – A Start of a New Journey 11/17

Its day one of a new journey, and its time to look towards the future.

The time has passed. I hit my ten-year mark and the only looking back I will be doing is when writing my memoir. It was a wonder to finally get to this point. My past is in the rearview mirror, and I am here for the present. My future isn’t written yet and so I am making it a point to live in the moment.

Depression, anxiety, insomnia, and even my mania is still a part of me, but I what I have learned in the past few months is that writing about what is bothering me, is the most therapeutic thing in the world. Even with my future unwritten, I want to talk about what I am looking forward to as we move towards the end of 2017 and beyond.

I am really looking forward to completing a major project, my memoir. I talk about it all the time and I am working around the clock to finish the first draft by the end of the year. It may happen, and it may take longer, but I am hopeful while at the same time not worrying about the part of this that is out of my control. Things happen and while there is always a need to finish, it is best to stay within who I am as a writer.

I am also looking forward to completing the novel version of my screenplay Memory of Shane. It was such a process to write the screenplay and it was grandiose of me to think I could write the novel version right after its completion. I was too close the project because it has been a major part of the last year and a half, but after few weeks I became burnt out rewriting a story that I know all too well. So I am hoping my April of next year I can be ready to pick the project back up, maybe sooner if the timing is right.

Speaking of my screenplay, I am excited to be entering full-length screenplay for the BEA Festival of Media Arts student screenwriting competition. It would be amazing to win this competition, but it will help to just get my screenplay out there in the world. There are a couple of end of the year screenplay competitions that I will be entering to end my year. I am really excited about the opportunity that my school is partnered with BEA.

Then there is my blog. What an unexpected journey it has been to grow my brand as The Bipolar Writer. It is great to connect with real people in the mental health community. I getting ready to expand my blog by interviewing others like me. I think it will help me hone my feature writing skills that have come with minoring in journalism.

My thinking is twofold for this blog, interviewing other bloggers to help showcase their own experience and their blog, and also having guest writers on my blog. Its a scary thing for me, but I have already had people ask me to help them tell their story and to showcase their blog. I am most excited about this project because there is so much we can learn through the experiences of others. I am thinking once my blog hits 2,000 followers would be the best time to make this idea reality.

I am also happy to be nearing the end of my educational journey. It has never been easy but somehow I get through every semester given that depression, anxiety, and insomnia take their turns making my life difficult. Through it all, I have become stronger, and I have honed my writing skills through education. It is one of the reasons my writing has improved over the last few years.

I am excited about​ what is coming and where my writing will take me in the coming months and into the new year.

What are you looking forward to as we approach the new year? Let me know in the comments below!

J.E. Skye

Photo Credit: Octavian Rosca