A Message to My Followers and Fans From Ken David Stewart
I was very pleased to see that my fan and follower base has more than doubled during the last couple of months. To you, followers and fans alike, I wish to extend my deepest appreciation. I really appreciate it when one of you clicks on the like button, or even better the follow button on WordPress, facebook and kendavidstewart.com. For any of you who care to check it out, I recently opened up a new website called kendavidstewart.net sponsored by ipage.com. I would also like to thank all my followers on Twitter.
I’ll be turning sixty-two shortly and am blown away by the massive platform that the internet has opened up for writers and artists in the various other modes of creative expression. I believe that everyone has an artistic gene hidden away somewhere.
I have not been feeling that well this winter and have had to take some time off my day job. I have had a couple of medical procedures recently, but I am determined to regain my physical health.
The one positive thing that has come out of all this is that I have had more time to work on my writing. If I had more energy I’d also like doing a podcast, some new videos and release some of my drawings to the public.
God bless and keep on rocking,
Ken David Stewart
Prologue To Lake Mariposa:
I have recently re-read my novella, Lake Mariposa. I was delightfully surprised by how much I still enjoyed it several years after writing the original draft.
If the reader grew up in the mid to late nineteen sixties this story will likely be very nostalgic. I believe that most of us tend to glamorize our youth as we grow older. We often tend to romanticize those years as being almost a golden age. The nineteen sixties are still glamorized by the media today.
There can be little doubt that the sixties were a very unique time in which creativity, art and self- expression flourished. What many people forget was that it was also a potentially dangerous time period in which experimental, psychedelic drugs were easily accessible. Lake Mariposa takes a look at the dark side of the sixties as well as its positive attributes.
On the positive side of the ledger the music of the sixties was more experimental and creative than the music of any other decade. Most people in my age group find it difficult to get interested in the music of the seventies, eighties, nineties and two thousands to the present. Much of the creative spark appears to have been lost somewhere along the line.
There are exceptions, of course, such as nineties Seattle grunge bands like Nirvana and the punk genre/heavy metal stylings of The Ramones and Motorhead.
I lived in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada during my adolescent years. We were very fortunate to have a very strong local music scene that featured some great home grown bands and musicians. During one summer, several local rock festivals took place in Manitoba. If one had easy access to a car or was not afraid to hitch hike, one could attend one or even all of these local, outdoor rock festivals featuring a dynamic collection of Canadian talent.
As this was the ‘hippie era’, it was not difficult to connect with a diverse group of strangers as there appeared to be a shared, almost communal philosophy of life. Young people went to these rock festivals not only to hear some great music but also in the hope of making some new friends preferably of the opposite sex.
Lake Mariposa also deals with the different segments of youth such as the straights, the jocks and the stoners.
One of the themes of Lake Mariposa is the burning desire that young men of that era had for female companionship and hopefully, a girlfriend. The novella deals with the intense challenge that this posed for many young men of that era. Lake Mariposa is concerned with young, romantic and immature love. It is also about how to make sense of a changing society and the difficulties involved in making the necessary adjustments.
I hope you enjoy reading my novella, Lake Mariposa. It can be read for free at Wattpad.com, WordPress.com, Typepad.com and on my own web site, kendavidstewart.com
Thank for your time spent reading this prologue.
Ken David Stewart
Dusting Off The Old, Rough Copies
During the last week I have been finding copies of some of my older writing work. Most of these are still in the rough draft stage and need a lot of editing and formatting. I am presently not very good at formatting documents but I am hoping to teach myself some new tricks.
Fortunately, I’ve saved most of my older writings on either an external hard drive or on flash drives. Some of my first plays, in hard copy format, are probably in an old box somewhere in my house. Hopefully, I’ll be able to find them.
I have already revised my novella, Lake Mariposa for at least the fourth time. During my most recent revision I have been able to get the text of lake Mariposa into a more readable format. To my surprise, while revising Lake Mariposa, I found that I still thoroughly enjoyed reading the story. If this novella had been written by someone other than me I would both buy it and read it. This just be my own tastes and prejudices at work, but I wonder if some other people who grew up in the late sixties and early seventies might also enjoy it. My most recent revision of Lake Mariposa is available on WordPress.com, Typepad, Wattpad.com and my own website, kendavid stewart.com on ipage.com. This novella is free to read and download.
About The Author (Part Five)
I don’t watch that much television. I spend most of my time reading and writing blogs and stories and listening to audiobooks.
Some of the t.v. shows that I do watch include Law and Order SVU and the WWE wrestling shows. I also enjoy watching The Winnipeg Jets Channel, Animal Planet, American Idol, The History Channel, The Voice, Fawlty Towers and The X Factor.
I have loved watching professional writing since I was a little kid. I started watching some of the real originals such as Buddy Rogers and Hard Boiled Haggerty when I was about five years old.
During the seventies I used to watch AWA wrestling regularly. I also use to attend the AWA’s live wrestling shows every third Thursday in Winnipeg. On one occasion my buddy and I had third row seats on the main floor of the Winnipeg Arena. This was about as close to the action as you can get.
I still enjoy watching Monday Night Raw and Friday Night Smackdown. Since I have been watching both these shows regularly again I have found that the creative staff working for WWE have really improved their story scripts. Vince McMahon has also signed some very interesting new talent such as Daniel Bryant, The Shield and The Wyatts
One of my favorite wrestling movies is The Wrestler starring Mickey Rourke. This movie should have won Mickey best actor at the Oscars.
About the Author (Part Four)
One of the greatest joys in my life is my desktop PC. It’s a complete home entertainment center. By turning on my computer I can listen to music, watch movies, listen to audiobooks, write both my fiction and my blogs, watch tv and read other people’s blogs and stories just to name a few of the computers uses. I spend many hours per day on my PC.
I also enjoy my tablets. I have a Kindle Fire and a Polaroid Tablet. I often take these tools upstairs with me at bedtime. I listen to an audiobook or do some reading on my tablets before I fall asleep. I take my smaller ipod with me to Shapes when I go for a work out. Unfortunately, I presently don’t work out as often as I used to. I think my age has caught up with me and there’s very little gas in the tank after work. All the same, I press on and try to do the best that I can.
My philosophy of life is basically to have as much fun as possible trying not to infringe upon the rights of others.
I have always loved animals. I have owned pets for most of my life. Presently my family owns two dogs, a Belgian Shepherd and a Blue Merle Border Collie and a small black cat. My wife absolutely adores the cat.
About The Author (Part Three):
Fortunately, I have other interests besides reading and writing fiction and blogs. I have greatly enjoyed listening to rock and roll music since I was five years old. The first recording artist that I listened to was Elvis Presley. My worse memory of that time period was falling down the basement stairs and breaking one of my Elvis Presley LPs. Needless to say this incident brought tears to a young lad’s eyes. Several years passed before I started taking a serious interest in listening to music again. By this time I was twelve years old and watched the first appearance of The Beatles on the Ed Sulliivan Show. I think that the very next week I asked my mother for money to buy the first two Beatles singles that were released in Canada. These two 45s were She Loves You and I Want To Hold Your Hand.
The Beatles were my favourite band up until the time I first saw The Rolling Stones for the first time on The Dean Martin Show.
Since that time I have become fans of more bands than I can remember. The two most recent bands that I have liked have been Nirvana and Motorhead.
Although I have little musical ability I enjoy practising both regular guitar and bass guitar. With the bass guitar I mostly practise scales and play some songs from my bass tab books. I have bass tab song books by The Beatles, Stevie Ray Vaughan, Jimi Hendrix, The Rolling Stones and Led Zeppelin. I also have a ton of regular guitar tab songbooks by a variety of musical artists.
About Me (Part Two)
Welcome back to Part Two of About Me. Over the last couple of tears I have read several books on the art and craft of writing. I have read Stein On Writing, The Successful Novelist by David Morrell, On Writing by Stephen King, How to Write a Damn Good Novel Parts One and Two by James Frey and Writing Fiction for Dummies to name a few. What amazes me about these books is that there is such variant and often conflicting theories on the art and craft of writing. I have also used some writer’s software sold by Storymind such as Story Weaver and Dramatica Pro Version 4 by Melanie Anne Phillips. I have found this software to be most useful for structural issues.
Possibly, the most useful tip I got about writing was provided by Stephen King in his book, On Writing. In this book Stephen King indicates that to be a successful writer one must read a lot and write a lot.