"Oh, absolutely. I grew up in a similarly conservative home, with both parents listening to Rush Limbaugh and Glenn Beck and so on. Part of the catalyst for my shift was the fact that I was already changing my mind on social issue like gay rights and…"
"As of tonight, my first proper drinking experience has involved a few bottles of Samuel Adams Boston Lager. Drinking it, I liked it at the same time that I could tell it's something I'm going to enjoy much more once I've fully…"
"From the time that I was probably about 13, things started stacking up in the back of my mind that just didn't make sense to me. Little things, mostly, but things that stood in the face of all the doctrine I'd been fed from…"
"I'm a musician, but at the moment the only people who hear me sing are my bandmates, haha, and I'm the only atheist among them. So I don't get the chance to sing any atheist-friendly songs around people whether we're performing…"
Hello there! I'm David, and I'm a bizarrely tall writer and musician.
Describing oneself is mildly awkward. You know, you get that weird, paradoxical sense of social propriety that makes you want to portray yourself as a paragon of purest unbridled awesome at the same time it makes you incredibly self-conscious, so you get all "aw, shucks" about yourself and don't know what you can say that will impress without making you seem like a self-important, pretentious egomaniac.
Maybe that's just me, actually, haha.
In any case, though, now I must talk about myself, so damn the torpedoes! Onward into the minefield of vainglory we go. :)
In all seriousness, I'm not terribly concerned with what people think. I'm very laid-back and comfortable with myself, and that attitude extends through much of my personality. However, I have my passions.
As an atheist, I'm an uncommon creature in my ultra-Mormon town. I don't believe in God. I stand where Richard Dawkins describes himself as standing: "I cannot know for certain but I think God is very improbable, and I live my life on the assumption that he is not there." I think religion is more often damaging than otherwise. While I respect individuals' rights to their beliefs, I find that I very rarely actually respect the beliefs themselves; they have too often fostered hatred and violence and ignorance throughout the world's history.
I believe that we should all seek to be emotionally open and honest with ourselves and those close to us. I think men especially have a tendency to equate strength with stoicism even after a couple of generations of growth. Communication is important, and we need to be willing and able to express our feelings so that we don't isolate ourselves in them and so that our relationships have context. If you can't share your thoughts, ideas, and feelings, you're making it harder for yourself and the people close to you.
I'm a sappy hopeless romantic, and love is deeply important to me. I believe that finding true love and companionship gives us reason. I'll take whatever comes to me at whatever pace, but one of my life goals is to find a stable relationship. I want to find someone to share everything with, especially the little things. People undervalue them so much. There's a very special, wordless, comfortable beauty about just falling asleep with someone you care for on the couch in front of the TV. After a hard day, a smile, a hug, and a backrub can mean the world.
Yeah, I know, I'm cheesy and sentimental. That's just the way I am. I subscribe to the New Sincerity movement a little bit, in that I think cynicism is ultimately useless, and sincerity has too much value to cast aside. This doesn't mean I'm not prone to sarcasm, though. I'm idealistic but not unrealistic.
I don't believe in traditional gender roles and ideals. It seems silly to me to try to force everyone in the world into only two boxes. I have many traits and interests that are classically masculine, and probably just as many that are considered feminine. Gender dynamics are too complex and varied to expect every man or woman to be fit neatly into those molds.
As you may be able to tell, I spend a lot of time in my head. That can be attributed to a combination of an introspective nature and a tendency towards critical self-examination. I like to know who and what I am as much as possible, which can be difficult; personality is an ever-shifting, evolving, sinuously twisting kaleidoscopic shape, and it's not always easy to know where the edges are. I like understanding things and people and their surroundings, whether in the real world or those I create, because knowing how things work and fit together makes it easier to take a creative approach to them.
Interests and Hobbies:
I love to read books and comics, watch TV and movies, listen to and create music, play video games, surf the internet, write science fiction and fantasy, cook, build papercraft models, play tabletop role-playing games like Dungeons & Dragons, and whatever else comes to mind. I have a wide variety of interests.
I'm currently about 8,500 words into the first draft of my first novel, and I'm also dabbling in writing some short fiction in the same universe. I have a tendency to judge myself and my work perhaps a bit harshly (most people seeking creative professions are their own worst critic), but I do maintain a healthy self-confidence and self-belief that I hope never slips into self-importance or arrogance. At the end of the day, I simply make an honest effort to do and be the best I can.
I'm a big computer junkie. Most of my creative endeavors and hobbies and the Internet reside on the computer, therefore, I spend a lot of time behind the keyboard.
I like to cook, and while I'm no gourmet chef, I'm no slouch in the kitchen! I have several signature recipes, and I keep learning.
Music is incredibly important to my life. It's the pure language of emotion; it allows us to express those feelings which could not be expressed by words alone. It's an art, it's a language, it's a way of life. Sometimes it's beautiful, sometimes it's harsh. Sometimes it's simple and fun, and sometimes it's deep and challenging. I listen to a huge amount of music in more genres than I even knew existed five years ago. I currently have a library of over 110,000 songs and counting. I can't say I really listen to one genre over all others. It all depends on my mood. From electronic to classical to folk to black metal to hip-hop to country to pop and almost everything in between and around, my tastes are very extensive. I write my own stuff as well. I play a little bit of guitar and sing and use synths and sequencing for the things I don't actually know how to play.
I have a miniature dachshund named Emmett. He can be difficult, and I'm having a hell of a time trying to housebreak him STILL after over three years (you have no idea how stubborn dachshunds are unless you've owned a particularly spirited one), but he's my little buddy, and he helps keep me sane whenever he's not driving me crazy himself, haha.
I have an interest in politics (not entering the arena myself, but keeping informed about the issues). My own philosophy? I'm an anarchist. Before you panic and think I'm a terrorist or anything like that, haha, anarchism is commonly misunderstood; most people seem to think it means chaos or 'no rules', when in reality it means 'no RULERS'. People seem to confuse it for nihilism. The reality is that it's a rejection of authority, not of order. Alexander Berkman described it as follows: "Anarchism means that you should be free; that no one should enslave you, boss you, rob you, or impose upon you. It means that you should be free to do the things you want to do; and that you should not be compelled to do what you don't want to do. It means that you should have a chance to choose the kind of a life you want to live, and live it without anybody interfering. It means that the next fellow should have the same freedom as you, that every one should have the same rights and liberties. It means that all men are brothers, and that they should live like brothers, in peace and harmony. That is to say, that there should be no war, no violence used by one set of men against another, no monopoly and no poverty, no oppression, no taking advantage of your fellow-man. In short, Anarchism means a condition or society where all men and women are free, and where all enjoy equally the benefits of an ordered and sensible life."
I don't think anarchism is politically possible yet, but I do think that in the long run, it's a much more ideal system under which to operate, assuming we can attain the level of education and reason necessary for it to function.
Oh dear, what a question. There are so many.
The Chronicles of Prydain
The Lord of the Rings
A Song of Ice and Fire
Ender's Game (and the rest of the main Ender series; other than that, I can't say I'm a fan of Orson Scott Card and his homophobia)
The Princess Bride
Anything by Terry Pratchett
Anything by Brandon Sanderson
Anything by Neil Gaiman
Anything by Charles Dickens
Anything by Isaac Asimov, or Arthur C. Clarke, or Robert A. Heinlein, the Grand Old Men of science fiction
Anything by Kurt Vonnegut
Anything by Fyodor Dostoevsky
You get the idea. Really, almost anything, though. While my focus is on traditionally nerdy genres, I do enjoy reading classics and well-written material in any genre.
Tough. I'm sure my opinions on this will change day by day, so I'll just list a few favorites and add any others that come to mind as I think of them.
The Seven Samurai (and basically anything else Akira Kurosawa ever made; especially with Toshiro Mifune)
Leon the Professional
The Princess Bride
The Lord of the Rings trilogy
Almost any superhero movie, haha, though The Avengers and The Dark Knight are, in my opinion, nearly the perfect superhero movies in their specific styles (one is big and fun and the other is dark and gritty)
Anything the Coen brothers make, but especially No Country for Old Men and True Grit
Damn, there are so many of these. I'll add more as I think of them!
Favorite activity after mormonism?
I think it's still writing. That didn't change with my loss of faith, though some of my writing style did change.
Also, swearing. I fucking love swearing, haha. I've got a mouth like a pirate on me.
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