My poetry was merely a reflection of what I witnessed or experienced in my life. There was never a plan to put a book together. I wrote because it allowed me to express myself in a way that I couldn’t necessarily do with another person. Just like writing in my various journals, it was a way of personal expression. I submitted some of my poems to various poetry contests and surprised myself when some of them became award winners with one even being published in a poetry anthology. I was proud, yet I was still very hungry to do more. So I started writing songs and recorded my very first demo in Tyler, Texas when I was twenty-one.
I moved into a phase of incorporating all that I had enjoyed from dancing, and writing poetry and songs to singing. I tried fusing them all together so that I could possibly become as great as the entertainers I admired on television. The demo I recorded was for me only. Never having been properly trained in vocals it was more challenging for me, yet it was something I wanted to try. I played my demo for few friends and family for feedback, and they thought it was cute. However, I was very proud of this new endeavor I had embarked on. Of course today, I’m a little embarrassed to play my demo for anyone, but still very proud of the growth from then until now.
Shortly after that demo, I actually recorded two singles, both of which I wrote and released to the public. For just starting out, I think I did well as people spent their money on it and sang along with the words as if the songs were hits on the radio by a popular artist. It excited me and made me desire to do more. I started performing again - this time - my own material and it felt good. I found out over the years that out of all of this, I truly enjoy being onstage most. I feel at home. I feel the most comfortable. And I miss it, when I’m not performing.
I continued pushing the craft of entertaining. I left the mode of just dancing or just writing or just singing and turned it all into the craft of entertaining. I considered myself to be an up and coming entertainer trying to do it all. A great thing happened to me when I submitted one of my singles to a highly famous production duo who have worked with some major players in the music industry. I actually received a reply back – a rejection letter. However, a recommendation accompanied that rejection letter saying something to the effect that even though the material I had submitted to them didn’t suit them at that time, they passed my work onto someone else who they thought it would fit, and weeks later I got a call from a Hollywood record exec. It was a great moment for me to have read that and receive a phone call. I felt I was definitely progressing in all that I was doing. That call allowed me a few more avenues to explore musically including meeting an employee from the Belagio in Las Vegas to possibly do some performances there. I was even approached to consider performing on a cruise ship.
In addition, I met a talent and model agent who took me under his wings and allowed me to perform in various affairs. He also secured me a short term modeling gig for a popular company. I was very flattered about the idea that someone wanted me because of my looks. I had often thought about trying to model before then, but my lack of height was a big deterrent. So, it was quite exciting when my agent told me that someone had considered me for an assignment. Even though it was short lived, it was still an experience I could add to my resume. My agent inspired me immensely and always wanted the best out of me. I still hold onto his advice to not settle for mediocrity. He has now become one of my good friends, and I still share my ideas with him even though we don’t necessarily work together anymore.
Fast forward to 2006, I got the idea to turn my collection of poetry from over the years into a book. With well over a hundred poems, I organized and conceptualized a theme for the collection and self published what was years of my inner most thoughts. It was definitely one of my proudest moments to see my collection of poetry come to fruition with the help of a very dear friend. Passion Marks Poetic Confessions was born, and it spawned several award winning poems and a newfound freedom of my personal expression.
Immediately after the book release, I continued writing and recording new songs, which I hadn’t done in a while because of performing, modeling, and preparing the book. It felt good to get back to the recording studio and create. It wasn’t until 2010 when I finally released my full length debut album, In This Moment. Just like the book release, this was equally exciting. After years of wanting to release an album, it finally happened, and it was honestly a struggle leading to that. Besides creating, I also had to play every role that would take place at a record company. I was the CEO. I was the marketing department, the PR department, the art department, the A&R rep, and so on and so forth. Not to mention I had to fund the entire project myself, which by the way, was several thousand dollars. However, I let none of that deter me. Again, I was proud of yet another major personal accomplishment.
Book Size: 190 pages
Category/Subject: POETRY / General