inky bar napkins


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Notes – sitting at the bar at Ocotillo Phoenix


The cocktail napkins on the bar were a discouraging, stylish black. Pen in hand, I asked the bartender if he could scrounge up a scrap of paper, something more inviting to the ink. He didn’t jive – smiled and offered nothing. I sat a while contemplating skin – wouldn’t be the first time I’ve made fast notes on a forearm – but knew there was a tide coming in, needing serious shore. It took a few minutes to remember: the restroom was well-stocked in neatly folded, off-white towelettes – perfect texture for a ballpoint to roll over.

Need addressed. Resources at the ready.

Prolific tangents called ink out into open air while the ice melted in a disappearing pour of good tequila. It feels good to be in the process, driven to turn thoughts into words, words into scenes, scenes into worlds.

Nod if you’ve been there. When the muse says, “Work,” you say, “Yes.”



gem, unlimited


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A new bedtime tradition is taking over — it involves me improvising tales of Princess BooBoo who lives in a Bandaid box and has the most varied, spontaneous adventures. My 5-yr-old daughter, Sachi gets so tickled as I make the stories up, she demands more and wants a new one every night. Nothing written – this is strictly an oral tradition. What I love is the momentum of the story being summoned through me by her eagerness to receive it.

This is why writers need readers!

The very first reader of a book is the author herself – on behalf of the many, she opens into that state of eager innocence and from there the story begins its telling. Of all the gifts Princess BooBoo has been delivering, this pure delight in creative process is the gem for me.



expansion is perpetual


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Indulging a second cup of coffee in new territory – lines, scenes, mosaics of dialogue leveraging a rare moment of unfettered solitude in the wake of a great night out… I feel the second book as palpably as I felt the first — one exists on paper, the other nags me from the ether.

novel by Laurie Perez - The LOOK of Amie Martine

Flaws, physics, mystics and lots of chilled Reyka converge in an anti-healer’s twisted path of self-discovery. Get The LOOK on amazon.


Once broken open
don’t endeavor to crawl back in.
Expand, raw and unscripted,
decisive and blurry in clear purpose.
Love the rise, your presence becoming.
Nothing has a hold on you, this I promise.

Supernova – quiet dream unchained – heart
awakened: let’s be stars to each other!
Where light dims, shine simply
because you remember now
what it’s like
to be


predawn magic carpet: how it begins

Two years later… I’m reflecting on how it all came to be. The LOOK of Amie Martine is now a perfect-bound, cream-paper reality. So satisfying to hold the book in my hands – to feel the weight of it mixing with the levity in my heart.


Laurie Perez

Wake up in the predawn dark, allergies in bloom. Sneezing, nose running, crazy need to pee — first thing I do when I get out of bed is:

type! Because I woke with a whole conversation in my head and I’ve got to get it down before time’s up. Before my little girl and the sunrise traffic, overflowing bladder, cascading sinuses and lifelong enslavement to hot cups of coffee – before all of these and more converge on my focus to steal the words out from under me (for surely I am riding them like a magic carpet over concrete reality into the wilds of pure discovery – and I must not fall before we get there).

In the beginning of this process, I needed an alarm clock and a mental crane to lift me from the pillow. Now the characters wake me up routinely, unapologetically, with less mercy and…

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a short list


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A short list of things I’ve outgrown the need for evidence to support:


Proof is in the pulsing of my heart.
This is not a foolish statement.

Your love for me is inside my love for you. Needing proof of it is like needing proof that I myself exist. If someday it turns out I don’t (by some unimaginable standard) actually exist, then and only then can you speak to me of the need to rationalize Love.


Let’s be stars to each other. -Joybroker


Read my new novel, released like a valentine this month… The LOOK unravels life, love and the mysterious, precarious, perilous truths funding our existence: It’s here!



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I was made to be inside
your song
and free from it, too.

You have a body. A life forms around it. Consciously or obliviously, you experience yourself in structures held in place by myths your active presence here creates.

In the context of a room, a neighborhood, a city block, the spinning planet, a galaxy uncharted: you seem quite small and inconsequential in your fleshy vehicle.

This is the deception you’ve agreed to — a willful forgetting keeps you safely tucked into a pocket of existence your brain can functionally fathom.

Souls are big.

What do you imagine when I say big?

A soul’s much more than that.

Poets speak of mansions; mystics speak of infinite space between the lines of a good poem. I’m saying: it’s not that, either. A soul can house a planet. And the giant star round which it orbits. The spiraling tendrils of our Milky Way, tacky with enormous stars and icy comets burning through: a single soul can hold that, too.

It’s misleading to offer adjectives for tangible sizes and shapes, but we have to start somewhere. To go beyond everything you’ve ever known, we have to take a step in language, where you feel easy and confident and trusting.

I’ve seen you measured in your body; inches and feet on one continent, centimeters on another. Oceans of emotion lapping within shores of persona, dreams, identities, desires, strands of DNA, skin — eyes that open and close. The soul, bigger than your best guess, can funnel in and drive a single cell with as much enthusiasm as it drives the entire universe.

And here, still, I’m misleading you.

The naked noun is wicked misdirection. To imply there’s this thing we can distinguish from others like it —a “soul”— yours, mine, his—the soul of humanity, soul of the land—the very suggestion is just wrong.

One “soul” expresses itself through many personalities, timelines, projects and life experiences simultaneously.  Physicists are right to say time’s not linear but spherical, happening all at once. For real: past plus present plus possible future = now.

There is no subtraction, only adding to a state of being, one infinite moment at a time.

A single soul may be simultaneously acting out the life a lost child in 1728, a 1950s has-been, a farmer in 2029, Wall Street thug in ’81, a continental pillager in 1221, Sumerian astronomer in BC 3019 and, well, of course: You.

If you could trespass souls the way I do, the cascading truth of what you are would catastrophically undo the fabric of assumptions holding you together.

Your brain’s not wired to process infinity.

A surge of timeless perception destroys the texture of this world so immediately, you won’t even have a chance to ride the thrill of perceiving the cosmic, orgasmic, bliss-tastic value each pulse of your vessels contributes to this grand scheme-less scheme. You’ll simply be ripped from the dream, destroyed in my wake.

And so I sneak through your seams in intimate silence — and when we meet in The LOOK, you never remember it. This is my kindness: you will instantly and irrevocably forget my hushed invasion of your soul.

* * *

As far as I know, I’m the only one with The LOOK—an ability that self-activated when a Dutch assassin snapped my bleak and meaningless life in two — because that’s exactly what I unknowingly hired him to do.

Seven years ago, when I was 27-going-on-nothing, he dragged me from the frozen grave I was digging, and crushed me painfully, then passionately, in the isolated elegance of dark Icelandic winter.

What happened that night pushed me through a door within a door and I said yes to what I became when I reemerged, unnamed, profoundly new.

I never look back, only forward.

Which is as it should be: once broken open, don’t endeavor to climb back inside the shell you were. Infants scream themselves awake because the womb is over.

That winter in Iceland was irrevocable rebellion. I changed my name on the flight home, filed the papers when I landed. Today, when we meet, you’ll call me Amie, as in mon amie, French for friend. We meet in mystery. We are huge beyond measure. And I belong to none of you.




senseless cents no more: cheers for writers on the rise


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Paying writers by the word is equivalent to

Architects by the bolt
Chefs by the ounce of ingredient
Haircutters by the snip
Directors by the frame
Musicians by the note
Night skies by the stars you can see with the naked eye….

Mark Twain was right (you know the quote).
Writing less requires real art, talent, expertise and more time than most realize.

Enough w/this 6-¢/word business!
Writers: be rich. Now or never.

Preferably: now.


first slice is messy and pungent


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(c) Joybroker, Laurie Perez

(c) Joybroker, Laurie Perez

Outside opinions. Prevailing energies. Generation gaps. Awkward rebellions and synergistic home comings.

Tucked secretly in a subway seat speeding through life’s dark tunnels, the guy beside you pulls out a purple onion and a knife.

First slice is messy and pungent. The next comes clean.

He hands it to you innocently: a single disk of concentric circles with artistically imperfect symmetry. Each ring inside the other, thin containers of the connections you two are making, separately together. Train car lurches – a woman stumbles closer, catches sight of the slice in your hand. Not sure if you’re being tedious or generous, you offer it to her a bit too emphatically. She refuses. Who can blame her?

Are you a child or a grown-up? A banker or a grocer? Are you traveling for work or for pleasure? What color are

your eyes? How authentic is your stamp? What matters most is that you in this moment realize, the story is something that you hold. It has layers and options, symbols and trajectories. Every single day, the details keep arriving because You are here.

If he had offered you a peach, would you be happier?
If the woman traded places with you, would you have preferred it? Press up through the center of the slice: a stack of separated circles expands into new dimensions.

Daily we wake and feel our way onto the ride, climb stairs, enter the stream, stake our claim on the scenery.

Choose circles of love, even if they’re poignant.
Choose rings of adventure and passion, even if they’re odd and imperfect. Choose pungency, then add your sweetness. Fill the space you’re in with gifts and choose to be one, too.

Joybroker 11.5.13

an almost suffocating need to breathe fresh history


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He’s receiving me. Immediately. On all frequencies. Without judgment. Without cluttering the conversation to ask for more. With no impediment, an affirmation of unconditional presence. Here for me. With me. Undoing the laces on my corset [of self-annihilation].

Fresh, hot tears. He has penetrated the surface of my stupor and reawakened tender, feral emotion. Impaled upon a precipice of wholeness, I am once again a mess.

“Thank you,” is my closing reply before I turn the phone off.

I love the world for allowing a man like [him] to exist. I love the soul he comes from for making it possible for him to walk away from his mother’s cliff, unharmed. I loathe myself for not being more worthy of this gift.

Now, what’s stirring in this murky sea of complexity and foolishness is an almost suffocating need to breathe fresh history. The proximity of forgiveness — knowing they can be accessed with one glance through a living, breathing woman with a known address — I could just ask. I could trade a lifetime of penance for the balls to say I’m sorry. Just that much.

excerpt from The LOOK