Do What You Love: Be in Charge

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Do what you love to do. Be in charge of your own life, otherwise someone else will. I used to be a talker, always talking about what I wanted to be or what I wanted to do. A few years ago, I stop talking and put an action plan together to take my love of writing to a higher level. My first novel won the Quarter-Finals Prize at the 14th Annual Writers Network Screenplay and Fiction Competition in Los Angeles, and currently it’s my top selling book of my four published works. There’s a certain inner peace that comes from doing something that you truly love, and I hope that each one of you have this already or will take steps toward finding your inner peace.

And don’t let your day job define you. I understand that you must do whatever in order to pay the rent, but don’t let the designer in you, the artist in you, the executive in you, the inventor in you, or the store owner in you wither away or tire you out due to your devotion to someone else’s dream. Be the person you want to be. Do what you love to do. – Randolph Randy Camp

More at https://www.amazon.com/author/randolphcamp

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New Roads

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Several months ago I moved from New York to an unfamiliar city. Getting settled into Des Moines has been both challenging and rewarding for me. One of the rewards of this move has been the new friendships I’ve made. If you’re currently feeling stuck where you are but maybe too afraid to leave, please do yourself a favor and, at least, consider the countless possibilities and rewards when we venture down new paths and open roads. Yes, I know, starting over and the unknown can be daunting but it’s also exciting. I firmly believe that if we never take any type of risks then we can’t expect to grow and reach inner happiness. So, if you’re currently dissatisfied with where you are in life, don’t be afraid to take a step towards new roads in 2016. – Randolph Randy Camp

*(photo: Veterans’ Creative Arts & Talent Competition, Des Moines, Iowa, Feb. 26, 2016: Randolph Randy Camp, daughter Randie, grandson Noah, & friend Kaur)

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The World Needs You

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Author Randolph Randy Camp discussing his novel WET MATCHES with high school students in New York, December 2013.

What are you waiting for? The world needs you now. That special thing inside of you which is so unique was given to you for a reason, and sharing your special gift with the rest of us in this world is your purpose and the very reason you was born. So, for all of you secret dreamers, aspiring singers, actors, inventors, actresses, writers, designers, teachers, engineers, chefs, film makers, quiet and humbled artists, this message is for you.

Some of us are thinkers, full of thoughts and ideas. Some of us are talkers. We constantly talk about what we want to do or should have done. It’s time to put those thoughts and words to action and start taking baby steps toward our goals and lifelong dreams. How often have you put your dream or desires on the back burner because of others or some other reason and later regretted that decision? Could someone benefit from your talents or from what you have to offer? Could you put a smile on a troubled face? Could you brighten someone’s life with that unique thing which makes you ‘you’?

It’s time to stop talking. Use 2016 as your action year. The rest of us could be benefiting in so many different ways from your special talent. Again, I ask, what are you waiting for? The world needs you. – Randolph Randy Camp

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The Audacity to Dream

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Some of my early childhood years were spent without a television in the house because our father was a very religious man, and he would say that the devil speaks through the TV. However, when I did get a chance to sneak to a cousin’s or a neighbor’s house to watch a TV show or movie I thought that it was the most fascinating thing, especially when I actually identified with some of the characters in the movie or in the TV series. Needless to say, I was hooked ever since. My love of creating colorful characters and original stories had its birth in rural Spotsylvania County, Virginia in the mid sixties and early 70’s.

As I grew older I got this crazy notion and would have these wild dreams that I was going to write a book one day, and sometimes my thoughts and daydreams would really get away from me and I would have the audacity to think that I would actually write a movie screenplay one day and see it come to life on the big silver screen or on the small box in your living room. What a dreamer I am, huh?

Regardless of my income level or my past or present day jobs, I was always thinking about or actually working on a writing project. When I was employed as a security guard at a TV station and Studio Lot in Los Angeles, I used that opportunity to learn every aspect of the TV and movie production industry as various TV shows and movies were being taped on our sound stages. My five years as a security guard at this TV station certainly became my own ‘poor man’s film school’.

Today, I’ve been very fortunate to have accomplished many of my literary dreams, but seeing one of my stories (especially ‘Wet Matches’) come to life on the big silver screen is one dream that I’m still working on and truly hope to see realized in the near future.

As we venture forward in 2016 I hope that this year has gotten off to a great start for all of you and whatever your aspirations and goals are in life, don’t let anyone or anything dampen your spirit and your audacity to dream. – Randolph Randy Camp

More at https://www.amazon.com/author/randolphcamp

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Speaking of Metaphors: Randy’s Writing Tips

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One of my readers recently wrote and asked me why do I seem to use metaphors a lot in my novels. I replied with this simple statement, “Metaphors make the reader think from a different angle.” I further went on to explain how I’ve always loved imagery in songs, poems and stories when I was growing up. Listening to the songs on the radio was my first lesson in creative writing. I just loved the way a certain lyric describing a specific object or an event could instantly plant a picture in my mind. To me, that was a powerful thing and I fell in love with creative writing ever since.

The beauty of metaphors, for me at least, is that it allows you (the writer) to introduce a serious topic while simultaneously softening your story to make it easier to swallow for your readers. This is what I did in my first book ‘Wet Matches’, a story that covers HIV and teen homelessness.

If you are an inspiring author, see if symbolism and metaphors will enhance and make your story more interesting. And please continue writing and don’t ever give up! Believe in your story, and most importantly, believe in yourself! – Randolph Randy Camp

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My Spotsylvania Nights

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I’m a couple months from my 55th birthday and last night my mind drifted back to the fall of 1978 when I was 17 years old anxiously diving into manhood. I definitely went through a lot of changes during my last year of high school. I seriously think that 1978 and 1979 were the years that gave me a glimpse of the real world and helped to shape my views and attitude toward women and dating.

As in countless towns throughout America, Friday night high school games in Spotsylvania County was the place to be, especially when the Spotsylvania Knights was playing their greatest rivalry, the James Monroe Yellow Jackets, from Fredericksburg, Virginia. During these Friday night games, many of us had our first experiences with the opposite sex and got a bitter taste of reality as we tried to shed our juvenile skin.

During my senior year at Spotsylvania High, I would leave school and sometimes go directly to work at the Howard Johnson’s Restaurant in Fredericksburg. While working as a busboy and dishwasher, I’d worked up enough nerve to ask a fairly new waitress out for a date. The first time I saw her I wanted to be with her. During our lunch breaks we would chat and laugh about our high school lives. We made a date to meet up Friday night at the Snack Shack just before the big game between the James Monroe Yellow Jackets and the Spotsylvania Knights.

I arrived early at the Snack Shack nervous as hell but looking sharp. This was going to be a big night for me because I truly thought that one of my mannish dreams would be realized. As this particular night unfolded however, I slowly became aware that our hopes and dreams come in many shapes and sizes and that we have to prepare ourselves for the different angles in which things present themselves to us. What I’d initially viewed as an awful experience actually was my most valuable lesson.

After waiting for twenty minutes for my date to arrive, the lady behind the Snack Shack service window gave me a look of concern. I instantly looked away, pretending not to notice her look because I was too embarrassed that my date hadn’t showed up yet. The Snack Shack was quiet briefly because the football game a short distance away had started already. From a distance, we could see the bright stadium lights illuminating the dark Spotsylvania sky and we could faintly hear the stadium cheers of the fans. The lady at the counter knew that I was hurting and instinctively knew why I was hurting. She motioned me towards the service window and kindly said, ” You want to eat some fries with me? It’s my break and it’s on the house.” Shame-faced, I shook my head ‘no’ and slowly stepped away.

About fifteen minutes later my date still hadn’t arrived. Once again, the lady behind the counter approached the service window with a large order of fries in her hand. She tapped on the window to get my attention. She could easily read the obvious frustration and embarrassment on my face as I repeatedly sighed at the side patio table. She motioned me to come to the window. This time I accepted her offer as she tried her best to cheer me up with stories of her school days and all of the boys who’d stood her up.

When it comes to dating, still today, some 38 years later, without even realizing it sometimes, I will make my judgments and opinions about potential women in my life not based upon the young lady who’d stood me up, but instead, based upon the beautiful qualities of that wonderful warmhearted lady at the Snack Shack that cool September night.

I’m approaching 55 now, and after all these years, I still think about that kind-hearted lady at the Snack Shack and all the changes I went through during my young Spotsylvania nights. – Randolph Randy Camp

More at https://www.amazon.com/author/randolphcamp

 

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RCstories: 2015 in review

RandyCAMPrandolphRCSTORIESClick here to see the complete report.The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2015 annual report for this blog.

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Author Randolph Randy Camp with DC Comics character Harley Quinn at the 2015 Midwest Comic Con in Des Moines, November 8, 2015.

Here’s an excerpt:

A San Francisco cable car holds 60 people. This blog was viewed about 780 times in 2015. If it were a cable car, it would take about 13 trips to carry that many people.

Click here to see the complete report.

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