How To Break Into The Business of the Arts – 5 Tips To Get You Noticed

the-slipper-room.jpg
“Dear Danger…
I’ve a question I’m hoping you can help with. I work hard on my other creative dreams and and yet I find myself craving more, craving the stage. Every night, I dance to my favourite swing and jazz tunes, and practice my strip tease. I have my routines, my costumes, my music. But what do I do next? How do I take myself out of my bedroom and in front of the audience I desire so much?

Faithfully yours,
Burlesque Dreams

Great question! Danger Addicts- whether you are looking to break into burlesque, or music, or writing, or art, or storytelling, or dance…here’s tips that will work for all of you:

Break On Through Step #1:  Go See Shows/Hang Out Where People Are Doing What You Want To Do.

Chances are….you become who you hang out with.
Hang out with a bunch of musicians? You’re gonna find yourself with an instrument in your hands one wild night.
Hang out with a gaggle of burlesque girlies? You’re going to go home in glitter one day.
You get the picture.

Watching shows and hanging out afterward will help you get your foot in the door.

burlesque-backstage.jpg

I went to every single burlesque show that was out there before I had the courage to take the stage…from the original Galapagos in Brooklyn to the original Slipper Room in NYC. I started to talk to the girls after the shows and tell them how much I loved what they were doing. Before long…that inevitable moment came, when World Famous BOB asked me to do her “New Revue”. She told me to be there on a date in May and walked away before I could say no.

Photo of World Famous BOB by Amy Touchette.

Photo of World Famous BOB (right side of photo) by Amy Touchette.

Break On Through Step #2: Take a Class For What You Want To Do.

Taking a class will help you in three ways:
1. You will learn.
2. You get to have regular interaction with someone actually doing what you want to do.
3. You get to be surrounded with like-minded people who you might be able to team up with.

I took one of the first classes that the New York School of Burlesque offered.
It was at The Bowery Poetry Club and Jo Weldon the Head Mistress and Instructor, blew my mind.
I got a greater sense of what burlesque was about,
I worked up the courage to talk to Jo after class and tell her how much she inspired me (she’s one of my best friends to this day),
and I met a girl named Trixie in class who was performing with a troupe named “Ixion” who invited me to come down and perform with them.

The Fabulous Jo Weldon.

The Incredible Jo Weldon.

Break On Through Step #3: Keep Practicing, Learning and Exploring.

With burlesque back then, and with music now…I comb through Netflix to watch bios on how the greats got their start. I watch youtube videos of people all over the world doing their thing and rocking it out. Through people’s comments on my youtube channel and the things I put out there – I’ve found other amazing people in the community across the world.

Here’s a video that my friend, Lavender Firefly, shot of me performing years ago – introduced by World Famous BOB and with Albert from Ixion on the piano.

Break On Through Step #4: Make a Strong Choice On Your Personal “Trademark” and stick with it.

Ask Yourself:

What are the most unique things about you?

and

How can you best express your style and individual character?

Make it memorable and fun and stick with it!

I personally love the fantasy of performing….I love watching my favorite roll and roll bands and burlesque performers in their costumes and wildness.
I live for seeing the false eyelashes, the glitter lips, the sparkly costumes.
I love seeing the “guyliner” and the fitted pants and different things that make each performer unique.
I don’t want the fantasy shattered with some boring ass ponytail, shorts and a t-shirt with coffee stains before the show. But maybe that’s just me.

I gravitate toward that 1940s glamour look and also the 1940s “Bad Girl” femme fatale vibe in my performing.
When I get ready to go to a show, I pick out clothes and accessories that will give that vibe without me having to say a thing!
Your “street” clothes (the clothes you arrive in to a show or event) are just as important as the costumes you wear on stage.

Break On Through Step #5: Always Be Supportive and Kind With Other Performers.
Let’s face it – performing can be terrifying sometimes.
Offering words of encouragement back stage to other performers and hooting and hollering for them from the wings can mean more than you know.
I know on days that I haven’t felt the greatest – my burlesque brothers and sisters have been there for me – cheering me on, offering me more glitter and pastie tape to feel more confident and secure.
ALWAYS return the kindness.
Remember that it’s about the community and people doing what they love TOGETHER.
Fuck the competing against each other bullshit.
Just compete against the you from yesterday …and every day you’ll get better and better.

Now get out there and go get ’em!

Do you have tips on how to break into your dream? Leave them below.
Do you have a question for “Dear Danger”? Send to my contact info on this page.

Love it? Share it.

6 Real Life Tips: How To Be a Performer for a Living

vintage-burlesque.jpg
So you want to be a performer for a living?

I woke up this morning surrounded by colorful boas and opera length satin gloves
because I’m teaching Spellbinding Burlesque for the first time in 2014
on Saturday, May 24th in New York City.
(Yes, there are four spaces left, so get over here, YOU!)

And my mind was full of secrets
and new things to teach in class…
and it got me thinking about the things I want to share with the world about performing that have helped me,
not just burlesque, but I think these rules apply to all performing arts.

1. Know The History of Your Craft

Whatever genre you want to perform in – be it circus arts, fire performance, dance, or music…dig deep into its wild past. The internet is your friend!

Knowing the history behind the origins of what you are so passionate about is going to make you have a better connection with it and respect the art form more.

Trust me on this one.
In New York City at Houston Street and 2nd avenue, once stood the original Minsky’s Burlesque.
In 1916 and 90 years later, I was performing 10 blocks away in the Lower East Side at The Slipper Room.

Knowing the ghosts of my godmothers of burlesque got their start just a short walk away made it even more special for me.
I imagined them passing on the torch of seduction and shimmy….
and took them up on the dare to be bold.

jo-weldon-burlesque.jpg

The Incredible Jo “Boobs” Weldon

2. Go See As Many Shows as Possible (Jo Weldon’s Advice) and Have The Courage To Approach Your Performing Idols.

I originally wandered into the Slipper Room by accident and was blown away by what I saw.
I came back every weekend and took in the shows.
I watched the different styles, the different costumes and different performers interpret burlesque in their own way.
I originally saw Jo Weldon and World Famous Bob there.
Even though I was afraid to approach them originally, I pushed myself to talk to them and tell them how much I loved their shows.
World Famous Bob saw how much I wanted to do burlesque and dared me to perform at her New Revue.
I hesitated and she said, “GREAT! You are booked next month. See you at 7pm!”
She walked away before I could say no.
I showed up the next month at 7pm and got addicted.

Jo Weldon later asked me to perform in her show and got me hooked up with The Slipper Room which enabled me to quit my day job.
My burlesque idols not only inspired my love of the art,
but also were architects of my dream.

Screen Shot 2014-05-13 at 9.08.58 AM

In heaven on stage at The Slipper Room

3. Practice, Practice, Practice!

Once you book your first gig – practice, practice, PRACTICE.
Know every move backwards and forwards.
Remember that you’ll probably be nervous when the big moment arrives –
and if you are prepared – you’ll be less likely to forget your moves.
When working on a new number –
my headphones are on constantly
so that I can get the song into my body and my mind.

Don’t think – I’m going to just get up there and wing it!
No.
Seriously, no.
It doesn’t work that way, even though all of us would like to think it does.
Screen Shot 2014-05-13 at 8.34.01 AM

4. Treat It Like A “Real” Job (because it WILL be if you do)

Show up on time.
Be where you say you are going to be.
Follow the rules of the venue.
Be professional and respectful.

5. Don’t Kill The Magic.

When I first started burlesque, I had imagined my “character” to be this glamourous and dangerous femme fatale.
In real life, I was awkward, nervous and had one nice dress to my name.
I needed to do the transformation at home.
I’d swipe on the drugstore red lipstick.
Curl my hair and slip on that dress.
From the moment I walked in the door at the Slipper Room,
I was the “Veronica Varlow” I wanted to be and project out into the world
both on-stage and off.
Each person is different,
but for me, I couldn’t show up in jeans and a t-shirt from my regular day job
and create the magic in the dressing room.
Living the whole fantasy of my burlesque persona from the moment I waltzed in the door
helped me gain my own self confidence and made others see me as the person I wanted to be.
Screen Shot 2014-05-13 at 8.21.42 AM
6. Fuck Competition. Encourage and Support Other Performers.

Of all these tips – THIS tip is the most important.
I cannot stress this enough.
There is only one you, and nobody can be that BUT you.
Be confident in who you are and what you can rock and
also appreciate what others are doing.

I love what I do because not only do I get to express myself,
I get to watch my talented burlesque brothers and sisters alongside me express themselves.

Over the years, I have gone through my own weird confidence/jealousy issues as I blogged about before,
but one thing I know about me is that I have alwaysalwaysalways supported and encouraged others –
no matter how shitty that I’ve felt
or what self-confidence issue I was battling.

Man, we are all in this together.
And there is room for us all to be successful.
Having a positive and encouraging attitude towards your performing family is JUST as important as your act.

Jo Weldon wrote “How To Get Into New York Burlesque Shows” for performers and her incredible book is The Burlesque Handbook, which is THE burlesque bible in my opinion.

Also, here is a very well-written and inspiring blog post about a performer starting out burlesque and her own journey….rock it OUT, Emmy Midnightingale!

Did these tips help you?
Are you a performer and would like to add tips that have helped you that I might have missed in the comments? Please DO!

Together we can create the amazing lives that we have always dreamed of living.

Love it? Share it.

5 Tips To Keep Fighting For Your Dreams When You Want To Give Up

frustration.jpg

Dear Danger,
How do I keep fighting for my dreams when I feel like giving up?
Love, L

I know what it’s like….
I’ve felt the odds against me.
I’ve felt like I couldn’t get it right no matter how hard I tried.
But I keep swinging because all of my greatest heroes were once failures who didn’t give up.
Time to knock out the obstacles and the odds.
I’m here in your corner.
Cheering you on.
You. Have. GOT. This.

Fight Tip #1:  When You Want To Give UP – KEEP GOING and you will push yourself through. 

This is going to seem like fucked up logic, but if you are feeling like a failure right now, it means that you’re attempting something that you’ve never done before, something wilder and harder than you have imagined.

Burke and I have been putting together our film, Revolver for 10 years.  We felt like we tried everything.  Last year, we were almost ready to give up.  We called out to the community in a last ditch attempt to make our dream happen on Kickstarter.  The odds were almost insurmountable, and in that month we pushed harder than we ever had in our lifetime.  All of us were able to achieve it together.  Don’t give up.  Tell everyone.  Keep pushing.

I’m crying tears of joy in this video because I knew how close I was to giving up on this dream…..


Fight Tip #2:  Don’t Let The Bastards Get You Down.

People that haven’t done it before love to tell you that it’s impossible or that it can’t be done.  Unfortunately, also some people who we look up to or people in positions of power will tell us – we can’t do it.

I was told by my ballet teacher when I was 6 that I had “clouds behind my eyeballs and didn’t have the grace to dance”.
I left crying and never went back.
I quit.
In fact, for years afterward, I would tell people I was a horrible dancer, because that was what I was told by a ballerina.

Eventually, a full decade later, I gravitated back to dance because it’s always been something I’ve wanted to do .

Now I make my living as an international burlesque performer dancing with feather fans.

Oh, and Miss Ballet Teacher when I was 6…..?

…You can suck it.

Photo taken by Jacklyn Shields-McGregor

Photo taken by Jacklyn Shields-McGregor

Fight Tip #3: Find Your Co-Conspirators.

Success is contagious.
Surround yourself with people you admire and who also believe in you.

Seek out people who are doing the things that you want to do and be inspired and encouraged by them.

One of the first burlesque shows I ever saw featured Jo Weldon.
I was struck by how she controlled the stage, captivated the audience and performed powerful and sensual burlesque.

I had to be her friend.

One day I was bold enough to ask her out for tea and we spent the whole time excitedly bouncing ideas off of each other about our wildest dreams.

Jo gave me my first teaching gig at The New York School of Burlesque and got me my audition at the Slipper Room which has since become my burlesque home. We lovingly support each other’s dreams….and in Jo, I found a dear sister, personal heroine and kick ass co-conspirator.

Jo Weldon - My Hero!

Jo Weldon – My Hero!

Remember:  Your co-conspirators might not always be in person. You might live far away from some of the people you admire. Luckily, the internet gives us access to everything! Reach out. Ask questions. Make it happen.

Also, don’t forget to create your own Circle of Seven.

Fight Tip #4: Our Biggest Heroes Were Failures. Remind Yourself of People Who Have Overcome The Odds and Kept Going.

FACT:  When google searching “unlikely success” – over 96 million results come up.  Remember that when you are feeling like a failure, you are among the greats.  Everyone feels like success is unlikely at one point or another!

  JK Rowling was on welfare, was contemplating suicide and had been rejected by major publishing houses before one of them decided to take a chance on her story of “Harry Potter”.

♥  Walt Disney was told he “lacked imagination and had no good ideas” as he was being fired by a newspaper editor. Later he was told Mickey Mouse would fail because women would be afraid of a gigantic mouse.

♥  In 1954, Elvis Presley played one show at the Grand Ole Opry. Jimmy Denny, the manager of the Opry said, “You ain’t goin’ nowhere… son. You ought to go back to drivin’ a truck.”

♥  Albert Einstein’s teacher described him as “mentally slow, unsociable and adrift forever in his foolish dreams.” He was turned down by the schools he most hoped to get into.

Fight Tip #5:  When You Do The Thing You Love The Most, You Give a Gift Back To The World.

See the people listed above?

What would have happened if they let those things get in their way of success?

What would have happened if they just threw their hands up in defeat? We would have lost out on their gifts!

Most of the greatest music, science, stories, and art came from people that were told they couldn’t make it, had been rejected and felt like giving up themselves.

What would have happened if Jo Weldon didn’t push herself to do burlesque, inspire others and then go on to open a burlesque school?  Perhaps the course of my life would have been changed, too.

If you are giving up on your dream…not only are you taking that gift away from yourself – you’re taking that gift away from the world.

Don’t you dare take your gift away from me.

I believe in you.
Now stop reading this blog and go kick some ass.

Love it? Share it.

How To Get Everything You Ever Wanted: Calling ALL Partners-In-Crime!

You just know.
Most times, you know from the second that you meet them…
Your partners-in-crime.
Your lovely co-conspirators.

Picture 2

A few of my fav girl friends back home in NYC.

____________________
I had waited my whole life for them.
I tried to tackle my dreams alone and I realized – I could only get to a certain level. But then they started to show up…one by one….
the people who inspire me, the people who push me further, the people who support my dreams and ideas, the people who make me be a better person.
And then…
my whole world opened up.
_____________________
Be the Thelma to my Louise.  The Lucy to my Ethel.  The Marilyn to my Jane.
Picture 1

Wanna rock out with your best potential partners-in-crime?
Here’s the three tips to clear the obstacles out of your path to build your own version of Andy Warhol’s Factory.

      1. Who are the people you’re surrounding yourself with?
        My Grandma Helen used to say – “Our friends are mirrors of ourselves.”
        I choose my friends by what I want to see in my “mirror”.
        I friend-lust for people who:
        – will boldly leap into the unknown to pursue their wildest dreams.
        – say “Yes” to adventure and to a life without boundaries.
        – are always learning and always growing.
        – refuse to let boredom or monotony win.
        – stand up for what they believe in.
        – believe that their imagination is one of their greatest assets.

        Because this is the kind of person I want to be.

        In the past, my friends were determined by the location I was in. I had friends that I associated with in school that I didn’t feel like I could be my true self around all the time, I would censor myself occasionally so that I wouldn’t offend them.

        I also had friends that would nay-say my dreams – I can’t tell you how many times I heard…”But you can’t do burlesque for a living…it’s impossible.” or “When are you going to get a real job?” or “Sure that’s a nice fantasy, but this is the real world.”

        So guess what? I full on DITCHED those people.

        Censoring myself, dumbing down the true me and hiding my dreams away as to not get judged by them were the most destructive things that kept me from the life I wanted to live.

      2. Do they push you to be your best self?
        Jo Weldon chillin' with Leonard Cohen and Bono.  She's a bad ass.

        Jo Weldon chillin’ with Leonard Cohen and Bono. She’s a bad ass.


        When I first started burlesque, I was super intimidated to be around people that were more experienced than me (which was basically everyone). I would judge myself against them and I would always come up short. How did I deal with this originally? By avoiding shows with more experienced performers, and by leaving my own shows right after I was finished – so I wouldn’t harshly critique myself against others.

        This went against my own success and my own growth.

        One day, Burlesque Superstar, Jo Weldon, reached out to me to perform in one of her student showcases and got me in the door to the Slipper Room. I was shocked that she would even waste her time reaching out to me back then, but she believed in me.  She has since become one of my best friends and our friendship has inspired me not only to stretch myself to become a better performer, but also to stretch myself to become a better business woman. Jo owns the School of Burlesque and many times our lunches are gorgeous brainstorms of new fun business ideas that make us both almost orgasmic by the end.Friends like Jo inspire me and push me to be better, think bigger and show me that all things are possible.

      3. Try it! Dare a friend to declare the next step toward their dreams. Then declare yours. Work together to keep each other on track and become each others’ support system. Watch as your dreams unfold in double time.

        Gala Darling and Me.

        Gala Darling and Me.

      4. Do you 100% believe in their dreams and do they believe in yours?  Do you have a mutually supportive relationship?

        I will never forget the moment I heard the Marilyn Manson lyric:

        “I don’t believe in the things that don’t believe in me.”

        It said something that I hadn’t thought of in that way before and instantly it was how I wanted to live my life. I am on board with my friends’ dreams 100%. They’ve got my back and I’ve got theirs. We lift each other up, we help each other out, and that’s how we are able to grow so much together.

        Blogging Rockstar, Miss Gala Darling, fueled my passion to start working on the Danger Diary three times a week. Not only has she given me super tips and great feedback through her Blogcademy, but she’s also linked to her favorite blog entries of mine, introducing her world readership to my blog which helped sail my readership through the roof. Gala and Jo are just two examples of many wonderful, inspiring friends that I am honored to have in this lifetime, who I would lay down on railroad tracks for. We encourage each other, brainstorm together, and make a damn good creative community. When we take the time to help each other I know for a fact that I can achieve more with my friends than I ever could alone.

        F#&k trying to be a lone wolf. F*&k jealousy. F*&k competitiveness.
        We are all in this together.

      5. Let’s sit and feast at the table of World Domination together.
        Pull up a chair, Co-Conspirator.

        If you liked this entry – check out my tips to be inspired by your own magic crew in The Circle of Seven: When You Need Your Own Badass Gang Of Inspiration.
        Xo
        Vv

How To Get Everything You Ever Wanted (In 3 Easy Steps)

Passive Participation in Life is My Sworn Enemy.

You’re here because you have a lust for life, a yearning for daily wild adventure and you are ready to DO this. Grab my hand and let’s go…

Picture 55

This awesome globe by Wendy Gold says it all.

The most important step on our journey is:
1.  Know Your Story.
I believe that life is made up of two things:
1. Our Stories.
2. Our Connections to Each Other.

I love stories and storytellers.
I have waited on line in the freezing cold for two hours on a sidewalk in the city to get into The Moth.
I did a confessional “phone booth” at an art party I performed at recently, where guests could pick up a phone and tell me their story or anything they wanted about themselves without judgement.
If you’ve ever taken one of my classes – you know I have a question fetish.
Let me interrogate you.

Picture 56

In order to be able to be the people we wanna be and get everything we want in life…we must first know who we are now and what we want to achieve. This sounds simple. But seriously…how many people do you know that “go with the flow” of life and never find their own thing? Life used to push me this way and that, until I figured out what I wanted to do, gathered up some wild courage and finally sat behind the wheel of my own course. Well, perhaps “sat” behind the wheel seems too easy. Because it wasn’t easy. My fingers were clawing into the wheel, holding onto dear life.

I started to own my story.

Picture 57

But before I started my own story, I had to be comfortable in writing it. I had to ask myself:

    • When I’m 90 years old, and I’m sitting around telling stories of what I did in my life, what do I want those stories to be?
    • In an ideal situation, five years from now, if I were to overhear someone talking about me positively to someone else, what would they be gushing about?

When I got to New York, I wanted to be a performer.  I found Burlesque icons Jo Weldon and Dirty Martini and World Famous Bob and wanted to be them. I wanted to do it. But I had my own fear battle to wage with myself. My own self-doubts. Honestly, it took me a few years and a wake-up call in the form of a rottweiler attacking my face to get on the damn stage. But once I did it, it was an exhilarating high like none other. I was hooked. I still had my “day” job to support me, but would do burlesque for fun on the weekends.

Two things started to happen:

      1. I was happier than ever before.  I was taking a chance and doing something that scared me.  I wanted burlesque to be a part of my story.  Even if I only did it one time, I could one day say in a rocking chair at 90 on my front porch:  “Well, back in my day, I once shimmied on the stage of the world famous Slipper Room in New York City.  How ’bout that, Young-ins?”
      2. I was passionate about something and it started to draw others to me.   The girls at my day job loved hearing the stories of my weekends.  They wanted to know what costumes I came up with, what happened, what new numbers I was doing.  They wanted me to bring my feather fans in and show them how to do them.  In other words, after being a girl who just filed their papers and was looked over for years, I suddenly and unexpectedly was the hit of lunch hour.  I had something interesting and intriguing to share for once – and I was passionate about it.  Wild about it.  And that drew people to me.

As a result of the above things – I slowly started growing my self-confidence.  It helped in everything.  I kept working on my story and writing my story.  Where did I want to go from here?

I wanted to do burlesque full time.  I wanted to make my living performing.  I wanted to see the world.   And most importantly, I told this story to everyone I knew.  Even people I barely knew.

428196_10150574879886516_1106024557_n

When that dreaded “So what do you do?” question came up, that I was used to answering to dead eye stares, I would say – “Well, I just started performing classic burlesque – with feather fans and wings.  I’m obsessed with the vintage style costumes and the mood of the music.  I love interacting with the audience and having fun.  I’m looking to go around the world with it…”

People’s eyes would light up because MY EYES were lighting up.  Sure, I was working a boring office job during the week – but did they want to hear about that?  No.  I told them what I was starting to do, what I was dreaming of becoming, and how much I loved it, instead of repeating an old boring story of what I didn’t want.

Then all these people started to see me that way.  Opportunities started coming up.  I stirred them up with my story of who I wanted to be and my story started to unfold into reality.

Here’s some homework questions to stir up your story:

      • If you viewed your life as a character in a story or the lead role in a film…how would you describe yourself?
      • What are some obstacles you’ve already overcome – big or small?
      • What do you want to put out there to the world?
      • How would a person who adores you describe you?
      • What things in life make your heart race and your eyes light up?

Make sure to also answer the three questions toward the top of this post.  And I’ll be back next Tuesday to reveal the second step of how to get everything you ever wanted….

Because I’m a tease.
_______________________
Let’s support each other in the comments with our story by answering the 90 year old question for all to see. Imagine this:
You’re on a front porch.
Rocking chair.
You’re 90.
We’re all gathered around you waiting to hear the wild stories of your life.
Tell me what you want to say. Tell me what you want your life to be.
Start it with “Back in my day…..” and let your imagination run wild as you re-tell the fabulous life you’ve lived.

I Was a Zombie Schoolgirl Bridesmaid.

“And the bridesmaids wore….blood.”
Zombie Girl Gang – Lucille Ti Amore, Me, Rosabelle Selavy and Gabrielle St. Eve

Reality check…

Being able to write about a day in my life that sounds like a B horror film = Hell to the Yes.

Truth: I had never in my life been asked to be a bridesmaid before.

I just got back from tour when there was an email waiting for me from my friend, Julie Atlas Muz, asking me if I wanted to be a bridesmaid for her upcoming wedding.

The word bridesmaid instantly plunges me into nightmare thoughts of:

  • chartreuse colored
  • taffeta
  • puff sleeved despair

Are you with me?

The kind of dress that will make you hate yourself AND your friend getting married.

Google “ugly bridesmaid dresses” and tell me if you still believe in God after looking at what appears on your screen.

But this email from Julie goes something along the lines of this:

“The commitment for being my bridesmaid is as follows:

  1. Provide your own zombie schoolgirl outfit.
  2. Show up to rehearsal.
  3. Cover yourself in blood.”

Check. Check. And CHECK!

About that rehearsal….

We were a bunch of half naked girls in a dressing room pulling on Catholic schoolgirl outfits and smearing fake blood on each other. I borrowed Amanda Palmer’s scissor to cut off part of my top. I feigned makeup inadequacy so Gabrielle St. Eve would lovingly and expertly affix dead white powder to my skin. I licked Jo Weldon’s faux bloody chest gash….and I liked it.

Jo Weldon and Me. YUM.

I was in my own personal version of undead heaven.

At the wedding, we huddled behind the door in the hallway until we were announced. And then we started beating on the doors in a slow, loud, zombie frenzy. Then we poured through the doors and attacked the guests.

You know….what you always wish you could do at weddings.

Then the bride walked down in the aisle in a custom Machine Dazzle dress to Queen’s “Wedding March” from Flash Gordon.

Jo Weldon sat in my lap the entire wedding. Sure, there were seats to sit in. But there was also my lap.

Excellent choice, Jo.

And somewhere in all of this, when we were all outside together as the sun was setting, I stopped for a moment and looked around. Burlesque girls, fierce queens, circus sideshow legends, world renowned musicians, artists, actors, and storytellers.

And I was there in the middle of them…..

covered in blood

dressed up like a zombie schoolgirl.

I almost started to cry with my overwhelming magic of life.

My 9 year old self is fucking psyched that this is what growing up looks like.

Me and Amanda undead. Neil Gaiman tweeted this picture and said we were beautiful. If a man is into you as a undead zombie schoolgirl – marry him. Well done, Amanda.

Undead Glam – Me, Rosabelle Selavy and Gabrielle St. Eve