Life as Amber knows it

"An adventure in the making…"

Monthly Archives: September 2013

Why Brandon Flower’s “Crossfire” is a true love letter…

I occasionally get swept away and moved completely by pieces of writing. And song lyrics are no exception to this, due to the fact they are another version of poetry, just set to music.  About a week ago, working  on something or the other at my favorite Cafe, I overheard a song playing on their music system, and it instantly grabbed my attention to the point I pulled out my phone and used my Shazam app to find out which song it was. When I got home that night, I watched the video on YouTube, and coupled with the lyrics, was pulled into the metaphors both within the lyrics, but in the actual video its self.

And I’m not the only one who’s been captured by this song. The past couple of days have included a long series of emails from a friend of mine, who like me, loves powerful musical lyrics. After email fifty (or so), his suggestion was that I write why it moves me so much. So write I shall.

Crossfire

There’s a still in the street outside your window
You’re keepin’ secrets on your pillow
Let me inside, no cause for alarm
I promise tonight not to do no harm
I promise you baby, I won’t be no harm

And we’re caught up in the crossfire
A heaven and hell
And were searching for shelter
Lay your body down
Lay your body down
Lay your body down

Watching your dress as you turn down the light
I forget all about the storm outside
Dark clouds roll their way over town
Heartache and pain came pouring down like
Chaos in the rain, yeah
They’re handing it out

And we’re caught up in the crossfire
Heaven and hell
And were searching for shelter
Lay your body down
Lay your body down
Lay your body down
Lay your body down
Lay your body down
Lay your body down

Tell the devil that he can go back from where he came
His fiery arrows drew their beat in vein.
And when the hardest part is over we’ll be here
And our dreams will break the boundaries of our fears
Boundaries of our fears

Lay your body down
Lay your body down
Lay your body down
Lay your body down
Lay your body down
Lay your body down

Next to mine

Anyone who’s ever been in a long-term relationship knows that they come with ups and downs. And any relationship, whether platonic or romantic, has its share of arguments (my recent favorite argument with a friend involved me asking him if he needed help removing his head from his ass when he ended up breaking plans last minute to pick up his FWB from the airport and made the mistake of jokingly saying to me, “Well, if you had a chance to get laid, i’d understand if you ditched me).

But when coupled with its music video, the lyrics to Crossfire tell the story of a man and woman in love in the middle of a rough patch. “There’s a still in the street outside your window/You’re keepin’ secrets on your pillow” says to me: Look, its quiet outside all of this, outside of you and I, and you’re keeping silent what you’re feeling to keep that quiet. “Let me inside, no cause for alarm/I promise tonight not to do no harm/I promise you baby, I won’t be no harm” says to me: Open up to me, tell me what is really on your mind, I’ll keep my peace and let you speak what you have to say.

“Watching your dress as you turn down the light/I forget all about the storm outside” says to me: Despite all this that we’re going through, the sight of you still takes my breath away, and I can forget whatever it is that’s been in between us. “Dark clouds roll their way over town/Heartache and pain came pouring down like/Chaos in the rain, yeah/They’re handing it out” says: Look, its about to get rough. It’s going to hurt and be confusion, I don’t care, this is what it is when you love someone.

“And we’re caught up in the crossfire/A heaven and hell/And we’re searching for shelter” Anyone who’s been in love knows that when you hit those rough patches, its a double shot of joy with pain. And despite the pain, you’re willing to ride it out until you get back to the heaven aspect of it, and look for anything to help you through.

“Tell the devil that he can go back from where he came/His fiery arrows drew their beat in vein/And when the hardest part is over we’ll be here/And our dreams will break the boundaries of our fears/Boundaries of our fears” is fairly easy to decipher: The devil is a metaphor for the day to day crap that piles up and causes those monster fights between two people. The author of the song is saying that despite the hardship, the dream of being with one another is worth all the fear and bullshit. Because the fear and bullshit? They don’t matter in the long run.

The music video features Charlize Theron kicking the ass of several ninjas to get to Flower, who is tied up, beaten up, and bloody. The moment that caught my attention and caused me to hear the song in a new way was at the end: Theron and Flower are driving away in a truck after she’s fought through bad-ass ninjas three times to get to Flower. Personally, if I’d gone sword fighting and face punching my way to get to the man I love, I’d be beaming a smile so big, my face would crack. But driving the truck, Theron looks over at Flower, bloody face and all with a wistful smile on her face and a look of relieved annoyance, just the same as anyone has after a hard fight has been fought with the person they love. They’re glad to be by the person’s side, they’re just still pissed off enough to not relax completely. Flower looks tired and sheepish, and like he’s had a hard time of it. Which is what people go through when they fight with the people they love.

And this is just my interpretation, what I saw when I watched the video and what I saw in the lyrics.

But what really grabbed me were the words, “Lay your body down next to mine” repeated multiple times throughout the song. Because at the end of the day, after the fight has ended, Flower is simply saying to the woman he loves, “Despite all this, lay down next to me. Despite the fight, I still want you next to me.”

 

~Amber Jerome Norrgard

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The Count Down is ON!

About two years ago, I sent an email to Barry Crowther that can be summed up like this, “Hey, I was wondering if you’d look over a couple of poems I’ve written and tell me what you think?”

Barry’s response was to read the poems, and email me back, asking me how many more I had. What followed was two months of Barry very kindly guiding me through everything on the road to publication, and setting me on a path in my life I had no idea I was going to take.

Among the many things that have happened to me since the day I published The Color of Dawn in January of 2012, the biggest blessing has been the friendships I have made. Barry Crowther is clearly one of the most significant, but there are three others that have stood out, and will always stand out. Justin Bog has been one of my biggest cheerleaders, always there with a kind word, an offer of help, always reminding me that he loves me and is there for me, however I might need him. Scott Morgan is another, and not only is he one of my awesome editors, he’s also taught me more about writing than I’ve gotten from any classes I’ve taken, and does me the grand favor of non-bullshit responses to my work, as well as being one of my biggest supporters in my personal life. And Dionne Lister? Well, what can you say about a woman who I’ve recorded over 80 podcast episodes with, come up with some ridiculous projects together, gives me the most comical track notes on my work and been my unpaid therapist for the past two years? Nothing except she’s amazing, and I am blessed to have her in my life.

I can recount what brought me to the Indie Author Arena, but I’ve done it several times and everyone’s sick of hearing about it. What I do know is that a gift of a Kindle E-book led me to a life I had only dreamed of, one that I am very grateful for. It’s led me to the most amazing relationships of my life, and career possibilities I’d never even considered.

Back in February of 2012, there was talk between Dionne Lister, Justin Bog and myself of meeting up in Hawaii in the Spring of 2013. But life has a way of getting in the way of excellent things, and the trip was postponed and then cancelled. And then, as a way of making up for it, Dionne told us she would be in Hawaii in October of 2013, and would be heading stateside, right to Dallas, Texas to see me. And Justin said he’d join us, and then Charity said she’d make the trip. Then Ben Ditmars figured he might as well join the party, and since Tracy James Jones lives in Dallas and Scott Morgan had moved to my neck of the woods? Things started getting larger, plans were made, hotels were booked, and other people asked if they could join in.

Which led us to IndieVengence Day. Saturday October 12, 2013, from 1 until 5 p.m., we’ll have fifteen authors at the Half-Price Books on NorthWest Highway in Dallas, Texas signing their books.

So to celebrate IndieVengence Day and my excitement at finally meeting so many wonderful people who are more like family than friends, I am marking all my books at $0.99 from October 7 until October 17.

And if you’re awesome enough to attend the signing and meet in person all these amazing people? Well, I’ll be thrilled to meet you as well, Dear Reader. And if you buy one of my books, I’ll give you a coupon code for a free e~book download of the same book at Smashwords.com.

I hope to see you all there!

Buy my books at $0.99 here, starting October 7, and you can pre~register to attend the IndieVengence Day Signing here.

Lots o’ love and huggles,

Amber Jerome~Norrgard

Interpretations

InterpretationsCover.jpgOne thing I love about being an Indie Author is the fact that I can do whatever the hell I want. I want to write and publish a poetry collection followed by an erotica collection? I do it. I want to write a short story and put it out there for free? My choice, and I go for it. So I’m very thrilled to tell you I’m going to be releasing a new collection of short stories called Interpretations in the next few weeks.

If you’ve been a reader of mine for awhile, you know poetry is the genre I’m most prolific in. And if you’re new to reading me, then run on by my Amazon Author’s Page and you’ll see that more than half of what I have published is in the poetry genre.

I’ve often gotten comments and questions about my work. And where as there are some pieces that are obvious in the source of their inspiration (“To My Child” and “She” are prime examples), there are others that tend to have an air of mystery about them. And when asked, I sometimes answer directly. Other times? The source of the inspiration is private, and out of respect for the person that inspired the poem, or out of the need to not go into details about something that’s mine and mine alone, I’ll give generalized answers.

And still other poems? Those are interpreted by readers and friends in the way they perceive them. “With You” was seen as a poem based on a passionate love affair, and several people have told me that it accurately sums up how they feel about their life partner. But “With You” was written about a gay male friend, and while there was love between us, it wasn’t born out of passion, but instead out of genuine affection.

Several months ago, an idea began rattling around in my head after I was asked about the inspiration for the poem “Fuck You.” And while I’ve never answered directly, and never will answer directly about that poem, still, the question kicked off an idea in my mind.  Why not write a collection of short stories inspired by the poetry and prose that has had the most impact on either myself or my readers?

Some short stories in Interpretations will be based on the actual inspiration of the poem. Others will be based on what readers have told me their interpretation of the poem is. And still others will be based on what that inspiration could have been.

And feel free to ask me which is which. But I can tell you already that I’m going to quote Charity Parkerson when giving my answer: “I’ll never tell!”

 

Amber Jerome~Norrgard

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