I got a Joey Ramone action figure for my birthday and I just ♥ it. He stands next to my laptop on the desk where I write every day. At night, when I light a nearby candle, he throws a spectacular, bouncy little shadow on the wall.
In a 1994 interview, Joey characterized punk rock as being about revolution, individualism, uniqueness and liberation. Being a punk, he said, "is about being yourself and standing up and saying this is who I am."
I love researching non-fiction projects, but have often found myself getting frustrated over trying to fit my work into a mold. Formulas that have been proven to "work." Endlessly fighting the urge to be unique in how I express people's stories. Joey's philosophy reminds me that I don't have to follow any formula that doesn't reflect who I am as a writer, and let the chips fall where they may.
So that's why I decided to give this little 7" replica of Joey's larger than life 6' 6" frame a place of honor on my desk. Inspiration from an unlikely hero. I'm not a punk rocker, but by his definition I am punk. We're all punks, if we dare to follow our individual visions. I dare, do you?
For more information about Joey (1951-2001) visit JoeyRamone.com.