I’ve done it. After five painstaking months, I’ve completed the third draft of “Thank God for Cancer” (formerly My Cancer Story). If you’re a consistent reader of mine, you’ve likely noticed my absence from the blog. Now that I’m a Writer’s PA (first on Ratched, now on 9-1-1), finding free time is hard, especially when I was knee-deep into the hardest draft of any piece of written work I’ve attempted in my life.
Last night, I experienced the worst flare-up of my Crohn’s Disease yet; the third instance of 2018. The kicker? All of these were following my revelatory dietary changes via the Whole30 Elimination Program. And no, this is not an attempt to correlate the two, but only to shed light on how Crohn’s Disease can strike no matter how much one arms themselves with preventative measures.
Read along as I describe these flare-ups (two of which occurred on film sets) and general tips on how to best prevent them, and ask YOU, the reader, about some of your worst Crohn’s battles.
Boy, it’s been a while, hasn’t it?
In fact, I hadn’t realized it had been five weeks since my last post until I sat down to write this cry for creative sanity. I’m not even certain how this post will do considering Facebook recently ruined the ability to hotlink automatically from WordPress.
Sure, I’ve been chipping away at the My Cancer Story rewrite when I’m able (the now vacant tentpole of this blog for two years), and I’ve been recording notes and elements for other projects (as I’m wont to do), but this past month has been one of the busiest ever let alone since I’ve moved to Los Angeles. I’m living my dream, but if I’m not too careful, I’ll tumble backward into someone else’s.
Let me explain. Continue reading
Many of you have expressed interest in the hardcopy book version of this ongoing first draft of My Cancer Story, and have asked me the title question verbatim. Well, I’m here to answer that for you, today.
My Cancer Story will experience drastic changes as my first draft will soon be beaten into shape to achieve its final form: a finished novel. There is a lot of editing, rearranging, tweaking, and cutting to occur before that moment. But, my goal is to arrive at the finished tome and have it released to the public on December 7th, 2018.
Why that date? Well, because that’s the day Super Smash Bros. Ultimate will be released, and I’ll have no time for both the book or the game at that point! (I know; if you’ve been reading, I tend to discuss the series a tad excessively. What can I say, passion is a large part of this book.)
Okay, truth be told that’s not the ONLY reason. I also aim to commence my book tour before the end of the year. Ideally, I’d like to visit a few hospitals in the Los Angeles area (especially the Children’s Hospital of Los Angeles), and then travel around the country visiting children battling cancer in as many cities as I can.
This book is the first step in a long line of goals that I have to help as many people as I can in the time that I’ve been afforded. My Cancer Story will hopefully be there for others who are experiencing cancer in some form as a method of companionship and of hope.
This is an ongoing story of my personal battle with Cancer. My hope is that it helps others who are currently experiencing their own battles (whether it be for themselves or a loved one) or to help with early detection.
The way I’m doing it is terrifying for a writer. I’m writing a publically available first-draft outline for an eventual book, chapter by chapter in weekly form. The only reason I’m doing it this way is to get the story out as soon as possible for someone out there who needs a survivor to visit them during their own treatment. If you’re reading this and need someone to talk to, tweet at me and I’ll give you a call. No questions asked. This story is for you and I’ll help any way that I can.
Stay tuned, as I will be posting a new chapter every Monday until the story is complete.
And remember if you experience any Anemic symptoms– get checked for Leukemia as well.
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Chapter 100: “Love Off-Key”
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Winter break was upon us, and from Scriptwriting 101, I got an ‘A’ and better yet, a feature-length first draft. Instead of delving back into this script for revisions, I decided to push on and get more of my ideas out there. I mean, I can always go back and edit them later, right? Plus, my focus had now been diverted to another project: a short film, and I had a plan.
My goal was to write the script during winter break, rewrite as much as needed, and secure a location & the props, all before shooting it during the Spring Break in March. It was foolproof. But what to write?
Chapter 98: “Gardening 101”
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“The Mayan Prophecy” was a mere handful of months away, and wouldn’t you know it? I was only now diving into my goal of making movies. If the past eight or nine years weren’t enough time to achieve said objective, then the only movies I would “make” would be the ones I wrote to appease the mutant monsters that would overrun the post-apocalyptic landscape. Timing was never my thing.
Speaking of timing, a revelation had only now struck me while visiting my Dad up North; we were terrible kids. We gave our parents such grief and even cost them hundreds of dollars because we were idiots, especially when Travis and I were living with just my Dad. We spent so much of our time fighting and the rest sitting in front of our respective televisions, “rotting our brains” on CRT screens rather than spending time with Dad, learning the ins and outs of cars, or simple gardening.
Chapter 97: “Promises of Pardon”
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Just when I thought that my creative juices had evaporated, I discovered yet another outlet. I was evolving into an allegorical electrician, and at the same time, a fundamental change in my health insurance threatened the fragile layer surrounding my internal wiring.
Eastern Maine Medical Center changed their insurance providers so they wouldn’t have to pay as much of the frontloaded costs. The new company offered a $1,000 “Choice Fund” at the start of each year ($2,000 for families). This ostensibly optimistic offering paid one hundred percent of any bills up front, and after, it was exhausted, then the policyholder would pay one hundred percent until their deductible was met. Then, and only if the person spent past their deductible, the insurance company would pay the expected eighty percent.