Thursday, August 22, 2019


Kristen Skeet has been writing for as long as she can remember. She wrote X-Files fanfiction about the stories she felt There's left untold by the series. She is working a sequel to her novel Down Went  Alice. 

Kristen can now add filmmaker to her many accomplishments. Her short independent film, Murder Creek,. is about to premiere at the Buffalo Dreams Fantastic Film Festival. On August 27th  Her film has been nominated for outstanding Western New York Short Film at the festival.

I hope you find Kristen's interview as fascinating as I did.  Remember her name because I have a feeling that Murder Creek is just the beginning.

1. How long have you been a writer/storyteller?
I’ve been writing for as long as I can remember. I would write X-Files fanfiction on my parents’ computer before I knew what fanfiction was. This was before we even had Internet access. There were stories I wanted to see from the characters of Mulder and Skully that weren’t being provided us on the show, so I wrote them myself. It was about 10 years ago that I started calling myself a writer and sharing my writing with the world.

2. What is your favorite writing genre and why?
I like writing drama with some comedic relief dropped in. There also tends to be a tragic arc in my stories too and I’m not quite sure why. I’m a huge fan of music and musicians so a lot of my stories are set in the music world. I’ll still dabble in fanfiction from time to time as a guilty pleasure.

3. Do you outline a story first or just start writing?
I haven’t written an outline since we learned how to do it in school. I prefer to just sit down and start writing. It may take me more time to figure out where the story is going than it would if I outlined, but I’d never start a story if I had to outline the whole story first.

4. How difficult was the transition from writer to filmmaker?
Not too difficult. I tend to be reclusive so the hardest part of it was crawling out of my hermit hole and working with other people instead of by myself. Once I was out though, I found the entire process enjoyable.

5. What is the premise of your short film Murder Creek? 
Murder Creek is set in my hometown of Akron in New York where there is a real creek called Murder Creek. The creek runs through our local park, Akron Falls Park. The film is the fictional tale of a young woman who comes to Akron to investigate serial killings happening on the bed of the creek. While she’s there, she interacts with residents of the village to learn about the ghostly legends behind the name of the creek.

6. Where did the idea for Murder Creek come from?
I hike along Murder Creek and the scenery is beautiful. For years, I’ve wanted to film something there for this reason alone. About five years ago, I wrote a simple four-page script that was something that could someday be filmed there. Once we decided to shoot the film, I added some of the true legends behind the name of the creek and worked those into our fictional story.

7. What was the best/worst part about making your film?
I can’t say there has been a worst part about making the film. I’ve enjoyed every aspect of it. I think my favorite part has been the people I’ve met, and the personal and professional connections that came from that.

8. Murder Creek is about to premiere at the Buffalo Dreams Fantastic Film Festival. On August 27th. Congratulations. You must be excited.
I am! Just yesterday, we learned we’ve also been nominated for Outstanding Western New York Short Film at the festival. It’s truly heartwarming to know that everybody’s hard work is being validated in this way. This is my first experience having a film in a festival, and it’s been incredible so far. It’s been a dream of mine for a long time to see a film of mine up on the big screen and now it’s happening

9. Can you give us a hint regarding future projects?
I’ve just started a film project called Alive: Fallout with Ty Cheman. Ty was our cinematographer for Murder Creek and is an accomplished writer and filmmaker in Western New York. He did an incredible job for us on Murder Creek and I’ve very excited to be working together with him on this next project. Ty wrote the script for Fallout (it’s based on his previous film, Alive) and I’ll be directing the film so he can focus on the cinematography. He’s generously given me some creative control over the script as director which is greatly appreciated. I’ve also got a sequel to my novel Down Went Alice in the works.

10. Is there anything else you’d like my readers to know?
I’ve recently begun freelance writing and specialize in content writing for crowdfunding campaigns. You can find more information at my website: You can also follow me on Twitter (@castawaykristen) and Instagram (@kristenskeet) and Facebook at 

Monday, August 19, 2019


Gabrielle D. is a diehard Cher fan.  She has seen
Cher in concert 30 times. She has even met the legendary icon Read on to find out all the details.

Gabrielle is a graphic designer and an avid photographer, She has traveled the globe chronicling her journeys through her amazing photos.

I wanted all of my readers to know about this creatively talented young woman, so I messaged her some questions These are her responses Thank you, Gabrielle, for this informative and fun interview.

1. What prompted you to choose a career in graphic design? 
I’ve always had an interest in art and computers. Even when I was really young, I would stand at the computer, barely able to see over the keyboard and I would create little designs and pictures and print them out. I love anything artistic and I also love technology. 

2. Tell us what a graphic designer does.
A graphic designer works with images and typography to create visual concepts and layouts for advertisements or other purposes…anything from print ads to brochures, to billboards, signage, vehicle wraps, websites, web banners, etc.

3. What’s been the most memorable project you’ve worked on so far?
I’ve done a lot of work for a ferry company in NYC, which has also allowed me to use my own photography in my layouts, which is another big interest of mine. Some of the most fun projects I’ve done for them are bus wraps and taxi tops. Getting to see them out on the streets is always cool. 

4. What do you enjoy most about being a graphic designer? 
I like the creative freedom of being able to create your own look for a campaign from scratch and see it through to various media. 

5. What was the experience of using a drone like? The video was amazing. 
Thank you! I got a drone because it merged my love of technology and photography. It’s so much fun being able to take photos from a different vantage point, getting that birds-eye view. To me, it’s more unique than getting that same photo or footage from the ground. It took some time getting used to at first, but after a few flights, you get the hang of it.

6. You have traveled all over the world. What’s been your favorite destination so far? Why? 
They’ve all been so amazing and unique, it’s hard to pick one, but I really loved Brazil. Rio de Janeiro is beautiful! Taking the tram up Sugarloaf Mountain is unreal. The views of Copacabana, Ipanema and beyond are incredible! Another really interesting city is La Paz, Bolivia. It’s so unique compared to other places in South America. They’ve got the longest cable cars in the world, which are their main form of transportation and of course, the views from them are awesome! There’s also a place there called Valle de la Luna (Valley of the Moon.) It was created by the erosion of mountains which left tall spires, and it looks like you’re walking on the moon. I’ve never seen anything like it! Another beautiful country to visit is Panama. 

7. Where will your travels take you next?
Probably Uruguay. It’s still in the planning phase.

8. You are an awesome photographer. Your photos are like paintings How long have you been interested in photography?
I’ve loved photography ever since I was young, way back in the film days. I’ve taken photography courses in school and never stopped taking photos. I’m still taking photography courses online these days, always trying to improve. I also love editing photos, applying filters and making them look their best.

9. You’ve been to some epic concerts. Most recently Hootie and the Blowfish and Jlo. Tell us about one of your most memorable concert experiences?
Seeing Cher front and center in Philly was amazing! Getting to meet her that same night was even more incredible!

Another cool concert moment was at a Cyndi Lauper concert when she came out into the audience and stood on the chair RIGHT next to me MID-SONG and continued to sing from there.

10. What was it like meeting Cher? How did the meeting come about? How nervous were you?  
I won a contest through Cher’s fan club and got to meet her backstage at a concert of my choice. I was nervous, but as soon as she came out and starting talking to us, she’s so down to earth, that your nerves disappear. She was SO nice to us, signed autographs, took photos, just the coolest person! It was the best experience and one I’ll never forget! I’ve seen her over 30 times in concert. She puts on an incredible show!

Check out Gabrielle's travel photos on Instagram.

Sunday, August 18, 2019


Photo Credit Julie Boyer
Take me away from..

Take me away from...
Closed doors.
Loud voices.

Take me to...
Palm trees.
An unbelievably blue sky.
Crystal blue water.

Take me to...

Take me to...
Sun-filled days
 A beach wheelchair.
Rolled up to the water's edge.
The water is warm.
As it laps at my toes.
The spray from a wave leaves a taste of salt on my lips.

Take me to...
Blue skies.
Slowly replaced.
With shades of pink, and orange.
A  hint of red and yellow.

Take me to...
People watch.
Imagine. their stories.

Take me to...
In this magical place.

Monday, August 12, 2019


Everyone needs a day.
A day to clear the cobwebs from their head.

Leave it all behind.

A day to reflect.
A day to dream.
Of faraway places,
I've never seen.

Ben & Jerry's Cherry Garcia.
Lucky Charms.
Chicken strips.
Comfort food.

I'm gaining weight.
Won't stress
I am blessed.

My problems won't vanish.
I've no magic wand.
Just for one day.
I want them gone.

Take my advice.
It's free.
Don't think.
Just be. 

Everyone needs a day.
Today's mine.
When's yours?


Sunday, August 11, 2019


Bitmoji ImageI began writing this blog seven years ago. The two topics that have received the most hits in the past seven years are Cher and when I have written about my care.

I am no longer going to write negative posts. I know that I have said this before only to vent my frustrations in a blog post a few days after. After venting, I regret my post. Venting should not be the focus of a blog.

I want to take this blog in an entirely different direction. I want to learn about people by interviewing them. I want to write my poetry. I want to be creative and learn about creative people.

I want this blog to be positive and happy. No matter what challenge each day brings, i want this blog to be a place all of us can enjoy and learn from. Myself included.

I have lived at Jaywood for a year. My life I am sure, like yours, is both good and bad. I don't want to dwell on that. I want my readers to learn about people who are doing really cool things. Evey now and then I might write about disability, but that won't be my main platform anymore. Certain disability issues just stir me up. I do not want to feel like that anymore. 

I am excited about the new direction my blog is taking. I hope you'll stick with me. I love doing interviews. I love writing poetry. I love to make collages. I love being creative.

Stay tuned. 

Sunday, August 4, 2019


Lori Peterson has been an artist for her entire life.

Lori credits her mother for sparking her interest in photography at a young age. Her mom taught her how to take photos with a Brownie camera. teaching  Lori how to look through the lens to set up a shot and get the shot right on her first try..Film and film developing was expensive, so getting it right was a necessity.

Lori's passion for photography grew. She bought her own camera when she was in her teens. As a college student, she worked in a darkroom learning how to develop photos herself. 

Lori loves the horror genre. Most of her photos she describes as"dark and twisted." 

Her grandmother taught her to sew. Lori makes her own costumes and props for her photos. She loves to go to abandoned buildings and take photos. She checks out a building first to make sure it is safe. Her dream is to set up a vintage webcam in an abandoned building for her horror genre shots. She likes to use old shop lighting for some of her shots.

While her photographs are dark, her paintings are the opposite. Lori uses bright, vibrant colors when she paints. She describes her painting style as "very flowery with lots of colors. ".

Lori credits two art teachers for encouraging her. Dean Bray who was her first art teacher. Ann Walker was her art teacher in high school. Lori and Ann have remained friends Lor wrote an art and photography book and dedicated it to Ann and another high school art teacher. Lori has another book on art and photography in the works as well as a book of poetry.

Her favorite artist is Frida Kahlo. Lor loves Frida's use of color. Frida used her pain in her art. Frida Kahlo was not afraid to be bold. Lori believes her art was a testament to who Frida was as a person. Lori thinks that there should always be a little piece of the artist in their art.

Lori enjoys going to cemeteries. Cemeteries were the first parks. They were outside of town. Cemeteries were a place for families to visit  She finds them peaceful and comforting because of all the trees and statues. 

Lori is a mom first and foremost. She is an animal lover who describes herself as "a crazy cat lady." She enjoys learning about people. She enjoys history. Lori studied Geneology after her mother passed away. Her great-aunt told her many family stories. He great-aunt's stories allowed Lori to connect with relatives she had been previously unaware of. She found out that some of them were also into art.

Lori sold her at art shows when she lived in New Orleans. She hopes to do art shows in St. Louis as well. If you hear that Lori's showing her work at an art show, check it out, you will not be disappointed.

Visit her website for more information

Friday, August 2, 2019


Photo Credit Facebook Page  Zen to Zany
Songs are people. Songs are places. Songs are life events. Songs are memories.
What's your song?

Songs transport us back to another time in our lives.
What's your song?

70's  Cher songs.
Our living room.
My grandma is listening to the new album I have just purchased.
My grandma is my best friend.
Who else would I share the awesome experience of listening to new Cher album with?
My grandma was no old lady. My grandma was cool.
What's your song?

Songs make us laugh//cry.
I am 13 years old.
The Partridge Family's rendition of Rockin Around the Christmas Tree is playing.
My mom is dancing around in our living room.
I think Mom loved their Christmas album eve more than I did.
Every year I listen to the song on YouTube.
Merry Christmas, Mom.
What's your song?

Songs provide comfort.
I listened to Cher's Song For The Lonely when my mom got sick.
I was lonely, but I was not alone.
Cher's rendition of A Dream is a Wish Your Heart Makes played as I wrote my eulogy for my mom.
What's your song?

Songs encourage
Pink's Song Try is beautiful.
No matter how bleak life seems.
You have to keep moving forward.
Life won't kill you.
Your only failure is in failing to try.
What's your song?

Songs offer support
Lady Gaga's Born This Way.
One simple message.
Be who you are.
It's okay.
Be proud.
What's your song?

Songs are friendships.
Aleks Syntek's El Email
Mi Fiesta
Goodbyes suck.
What's your song?

Going to see a play.
My friend Roberta's driving
The radio's blasting ...
She Drives Me Crazy by Fine Young Cannibals
Roberta and me singing at the top of our lungs.
Forgetting my mom is in the backseat.
Forgetting I am disabled
What's your song?

Songs are family
Proud Mary by Tina Turner
My nephew's wedding.
He and his bride took me out on the dance floor.
My nephew is controlling the joystick of my power chair.
Back and forth.
Turning in circles.
I'm laughing.
I'm dizzy.
I am dancing.
Best time ever with my family.
What's your song?

Songs are the road map of our lives.
What's your road map sound like?