Ten days…

The 30 songs in 30 days challenge starts in 10 days. I'll be teaching the 26th, 27th, 28th, 29th.

The challenge starts on the 30th…

…why am i so stupid?

About 8 other people are signed up. I've started working on the award certificates. I'm planning to post a podcast once a week with the best song i make that week.


The problem is… i can't sing.

I mean, not really. Sure, i used to scream in a couple of hardcore punk bands…

…and yeah, i was the backup singer in my 80s cover band. But all i sang then was “Do-do Do do Do-do do Do-do do Do-do do do do.”

…i'm also not all that great a guitar player.

I think i'm in trouble.

To make myself feel better, i've been listening to bands with, uh, atypical singers… Like Bright Eyes, that guy has a terrible voice, but somehow it works. Or Black Francis or Danny Elfman or or or…


Apparently i’m not as original as i thought…

Just found out that i'm not the first person to think of the whole “album in a month” thing.

One of them is in February. Oops. Found out about it by a guy on the web who saw one of my promos.

Well… um… my idea is cooler!… yeah.

Actually the other two contests are pretty cool:

One of them happens in November, same time as NaNoWriMo, it's called National Solo Album Month, or NaSoAlMo.

The one in Feburary is called February Album Writing Month, or FAWM.

The thing is, with FAWM you only have to write 14 songs in 28 days, with NaSoAlMo you only have to write 29 minutes of music in 30 days.

And with both of them, there's no criteria of what is a song or an album. There's participants in both of them that are doing instrumental albums.

Hell, i can make two or three instrumental tracks a day. What really feels like an edge to me is to write songs with lyrics and to [gulp] sing. And to do a song every day.

I did get an enthusiastic email by someone who wants to do it… at least i think so… they're email was so enthusiastic that i'm not quite sure they were saying.

well, a total dreamer !!!
but you need contestants.!?!..prob. survive a couple days…more…
hoho!!…this could get me even crazier !!!??!!!
So wild guru, I take ur guidance to the lightning sounds at the end of the tunnel…

Well… cool… rock on!

My body is allergic to sleep…

The 30 songs in 30 days challenge is shaping up. I have a handful of people who want to play with me and i've created a web page for the event. http://systemcrasher.com/30s30d.htm

I was talking to the other day and she asked, “are you going to plan for these songs at all?”

Um…. no.

I think i have this attitude that i'm cheating if i do any planning at all… this is because i'm stupid.

Anyway, in other news i can't sleep at night. I've gotten about 3 hours a night every night for the last 4 days. I'm starting to get all zombieish during the day.

What's up with that?

Anyway, anyway, i'm trying to get into the Clarion workshop, and as part of the application i have to write a 800 word biography for myself… i guess that's an autobiography… anyway, as much as i like to whine in this blog, i'm pretty stuck in writing about myself for 800 words. Bleh.

So… off to go write about how really utterly cool i am… and stuff.

The 30 Songs In 30 Days Contest!

30 Songs in 30 Days

Alright, here's the deal:

From Jan 30th till Feb 28th i am going to write, perform, and record an original song a day, every day, for 30 days.




…join me



Did i mention it's a contest?

Here're the rules:

There are two levels of difficulty, with two levels of prizes.

LEVEL 1 (for those who wish to push their edge):

Write the lyrics and music for a complete, original, song each day (or write 3 songs a day for 10 days… or write 30 songs in 1 day. Whatever. Just as long as you have 30 songs recorded by 11:59:59 pm Feb 28th.)

What is a song?
You decide. Maybe you'll write and record a 30 second jingle. Maybe a 10 minute epic. Maybe you'll record yourself and an acoustic guitar. Perhaps you'll throw down acapella style or a friend will beatbox behind you. Set your own goals, set your own definition.

What is not a song?
No Scatting. At least 70% of your lyrics must be lyrics (yes, “baby, baby, baby” is okay, if it's followed by what you think of “baby”)

No free-form poetry set to random noodling. A song has structure. A song has something that resembles singing (at least as much as Lou Reed or Cake.)

Sorry. We need some criteria, and the line is drawn just short of William Shatner.

No covers. Write the song, write the lyrics.

It's a contest? What do i win?
If you slink past the finish line on March 1st with ye olde sack of 30 songs, you will gain the oh's and ah's of all your friends and family. You will get bragging rights for years to come. You will have a great icebreaker for wooing potential romantic partners…

… AND you will receive (from me) a rare, gold encrusted, PDF certificate naming YOU as the coolest person in the entire multiverse.


LEVEL 2 (for those who wish drive themselves insane):

Same as above.


  • Each song must be at least 2 minutes long.
  • Each song must have a melody and harmony
  • Each song must have at least 1 vocal, singing comprehensible lyrics, and at least 3 other elements (like drums / bass / guitar, or deep rezzy bloops / high screechy bloops / sitar, or hand claps / piano / chainsaw… you decide)

…psst, i'm doing level 2.

Is there a better prize for LEVEL 2?
You bet there is! BETTER bragging rights. BETTER wooing potential… and an even BETTER PDF certificate (diamond encrusted, worthy of framing.)



Why are you doing this?
'Cause i'm crazy.

Is there a precedent for this kind of thing?
It's kinda like NaNoWriMo for music.

Why would anyone do this?
It's about the magical power of deadlines. It's about bragging to everyone you know that you are going to do something scary, something impossible.

Why should I do this?
Because life is about doing crazy, scary things that we don't think we can do.

Just to risk looking bad, to risk doing something you thought you couldn't do. Give someone a goal and a goal-minded community and miracles are bound to happen.

It's about pure creativity. It's about abandoning our inner critic, leaving our inner editor at a day-care center for a month. It's about seeing what comes out when we don't have time to worry our dreams into nothingness.

Chris Baty, creator of NaNoWriMo, once said:
The quickest, easiest way to produce something beautiful and lasting is to risk making something horribly crappy.

Great works of art can be created in a month.

One more quote from Chris:
The glow from making big, messy art, and watching others make big, messy art, lasts for a long, long time. The act of sustained creation does bizarre, wonderful things to you. It changes the way you look at art. And changes, a little bit,your sense of self.


Why would I do such a stupid thing?
Do it because it's stupid.


This is impossible
Do it because it's impossible.




Drop me an email at 30s30d@systemcrasher.com or respond to this post.

    Tell me:

  • Your name
  • Your email address
  • Level 1 or Level 2

…see ya in february

Obligatory New Year’s rumination…

Posted by ON in Dear Diary

Did the quiet new years thing last night, J and i hung, talked, played games, watched anime, and did a ritual before and after midnight. Nice.

We met with some friends a few days ago and set goals for the coming year. Here are some of mine:

    Heart / Spirit

  • Seek harmony between body, mind and spirit
    • Write daily goal check-ins to J and K
    • Take breaks every day
    • Take at least 4 days off a month
  • Spend time in my vision
  • Spend time outdoors
  • Honor spontaneous creation
  • Breathe

  • Walk at least two blocks everyday.
  • Bike!
  • DDR!
  • Eat less, primarily vegetables (as close to raw as i can stand)
  • Do yoga every day
  • Drink 3 liters of water a day

  • Write and record 30 songs with lyrics/vocals
  • Write and record 1 new instrumental album (probably trance or breaks)
  • Take first steps towards composing for film / interactive media
  • Take first steps towards performing live

  • Finish polishing 4 stories for Clarion and mail in (with application and scholarship request)
  • Use the Bradbury method for writing goals
    • Write 1 story a week
    • Finish every story
    • Mail out every non-trunked story (after 3 drafts)
  • Submit a story every quarter to Writers of the Future this year
  • Do 1 writing exercise each day

  • Learn 90 lessons of Japanese lessons
    • Possibly take Japanese class

  • Incorporate Heart of Now into 501c3
  • Teach at least 6 courses and set up Midwest Heart of Now course