The Gonzo Journals
February 16th, 2023
I knew I wasn’t going to be anywhere near a computer for the next few days, so I wrote this last night. No, this isn’t a suicide letter or a goodbye of sorts. Some of you couldn’t get that lucky if you covered your wang in honey and screwed a beehive! It’s plainly important to me that I write ‘something’ daily for when I stop procrastinating about the next project. That next project is the re-release of Extinguished. Here’s the cover, and I hope to have it out by the end of next week. Wish me luck!
By the time you read this, I will be on a train headed for Austin. Even though it only takes a few hours to get there, my wife and I decided to take a six-hour train instead. We just want to talk and stare out the window as a Valentine’s gift to one another. We have an Air B&B on 6th Street, and everything is within walking distance. The plan is to just backpack everywhere and enjoy each other’s company. No work, no worries. We’ve earned it, I think.
Just because I won’t be sitting at the Gonzo Wolf desk to annoy you all doesn’t mean I’m going to leave you empty handed. I could type this all out on my phone during the train trip, but I have fat thumbs. Let’s face it, I have fat everything, but the thumbs are what comes to mind when texting a blog for an hour straight. That sounds like a freaking nightmare. I’ll have no part of it.
Let’s take the time to go back to basics with one another. Do you remember fourth grade English? Who, What, When, Where, Why, and How. These are the six building blocks of any writing project. Whether you’re penning a novel or writing a news article, you must cover the same ground repeatedly to be successful. Have you ever turned these questions on yourself to see what you produce? Let’s give it a shot.
Who – My real name is Chad Dereick Cloud-Miller, but my pen name is C. Derick Miller. It was given to me by my first literary agent. I was born in the town of Greenville, Texas on December 18th, 1973, and I am 49 years old. I currently have five children and six grandchildren. I am an award-winning Texas author, podcaster, actor, producer, freelance journalist, songwriter, screenwriter, poet, ordained minister, paranormal investigator, independent Dallas art consultant, retro arcade gamer, hair metal lover, snake enthusiast, vintage steam locomotive fireman, guitar novice, Army veteran, & braggart!
What – What I’m currently doing is keeping the pump primed. As a writer, you can set yourself back if you get out of the writing habits. I write between one thousand and five thousand words per day about anything and everything when I’m between projects. I’d written so much negative stuff this week that I thought it was time to be positive, maybe even philosophical. I hope to have my final novel Home Sweet Home completed by the end of the year so that I may retire. No more novels. Just short stories, novellas, and articles.
When – Today is February 16th, 2023 and it’s been a strange week. The government keeps shooting down UFO’s, the worst train catastrophe in U.S. history took place in Ohio, there’s a horrible war going on in Ukraine, an earthquake annihilated Turkey and killed almost fifty thousand people, and greedy, ignorant politicians are ruining our world. I ate three meals today, laughed, and had fun. I can’t help but feel guilty sometimes for doing so knowing there is so much death and destruction going on all around me.
Where – I live in the Bishop Arts District of Dallas. I am walking distance from parks, party spots, and public transit. I settled here because my wife purchased a condo shortly before we began dating. The master plan was to somehow make it to New York City and live out the rest of my days as a struggling artist. Dallas isn’t bad, though. I was born an hour away in the small town of Greenville, Texas. It was once known in the Guinness Book of World Records as having the most churches per capita than any other city in the country. It also had a sign hanging across its main street downtown stating “Welcome to Greenville: The blackest land, the whitest people” until the late sixties/early seventies. It embarrasses me to discuss my hometown with strangers, but I love to watch their faces melt when I do.
Why – This is always a hell of a question. Why? Why do I do what I do? My middle school newspaper editor was the first person who claimed I had writing talent, so I hid it the best I could. Only nerds were writers in 1987 and nerds didn’t get laid. Neither did seventh graders though so it worked out! I wrote privately throughout my life, poetry and such, but stopped when I graduated school. I tried my hand at it again in my late twenties because there were too many words in my brain. Does that make sense? I read The Language of Fear by Del James and it made me want to write professionally. I was first published in 2007. My goal is to one day see my own name in the credits of a film on a movie screen. I’m so close right now…
How – How can I keep doing this in an unforgiving, undereducated world where every single person who owns a phone can insult and belittle you without any fear of repercussions? That’s easy. I don’t have a choice. My brain won’t shut off. I write because I love it and, now that I have the choice to do it full time, the chance for me to be successful is within reach. My biggest problem is that I don’t know how to bullshit people. I pride myself on being brutally honest and some people just need a wakeup call. Whereas most people in the entertainment industry smoke and mirror you to death with promises of greatness, I prefer to celebrate my faults as well as my successes. Some don’t like this. Some can blow.
And there you have it! I just interviewed myself. It feels very narcissistic to do so, but if we don’t love us, who will? I’m not sure if you learned anything about me from it but I think I may have learned something about myself. Sometimes the words reach the fingers before the filter kicks in. Does that make sense?
Please feel free to include your own interviews in the comments below! Don’t worry, I won’t use this information to steal your identity or anything. Most times, I don’t want to be me, but I sure wouldn’t want to be you either. Nothing personal, I just hate pooping in strange restrooms!
Enjoy your weekend!
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