Friday, August 31, 2007

Singin' Sinatra...

What a day this has been, what a rare mood I’'m in, why it’s al-most like bein' in love”.

My dad loved Sinatra. Always played him before dinner when I was a kid. And it seems like for the past week I haven'’t been able to get that song out of my head. Oh, before I go off on another tangent, I should mention that I found Trish, my sister! And I’ll be the first to admit that we both cried like two little ninnies for a good hour. I really missed her.

Turns out, Trish trickled in with a handful of other travelers and she’s been helping me show them around. I'’ll admit, she’s had to fake it a little since this island is as new to her as it is to everyone else. And since the Involvium effect is causing the island metamorphose constantly, I wake up to something new every day. This morning I awoke to one of those giant Idol-heads, like from Easter Island, staring right at me.

Trish and I aren’'t bickering like we used to. Seems like we’re not sweating the small stuff anymore, and we’re seeing each other for who we really are. Oh, before I forget, Involvium Ventures Mining has invited me to join the company and I said yes! Even signed a contract on the spot. I kinda feel like Tatu from Fantasy Island now, acting as liaison between the expeditionary team and the new guests. Well, Trish and I are having lunch together out by the giant Idol, so, from your loyal metaverse blogger, I big you “adieu” for now. (I learned that from one of the new guests - a really suave Algerian guy ;-P )

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Here's a few more shots with me and my Lumos Flower. It seems I have a somewhat fertile imagination, as small patches of them are springing up around our encampment...

Something that I manifested through my thoughts -- with help from the Involvium Effect Energy. I call it the "Lumos Flower".

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Another photo courtesy of Mr. Voom... its Ethan working on our transport mid-flight. Apparently, Phinneus Darcy picked-up this unusual mechanism somewhere around Uli.

Saturday, August 25, 2007

My new friend Paperback Voom, turns out, has a camera. Here's me against that sunset I mentioned.

Thoughts About My Experience

It’s funny, but the travelers had all read my blog. Harry, my editor, has thus moved on to another story. But I don’t mind though, Harry never really had any real vision – or imagination. He hasn’t even called to check up on me, which makes me wonder if I even have a job to come back to. But oddly enough, I don’t care. I’m starting to realize that, just like these new travellers were drawn to this island, so was I. I just used my sister as an excuse – refusing to accept the fact that this island has been calling to me for a long time now. The folks at Involvium Energy Ventures are creating a permanent mining colony here. In fact, this island and the Involvium it contains have become so important to them that they are changing their name to "Involvium Ventures Mining".

I think I’ll stay and see if I can help out. This Involvium stuff is too special and precious not to be studied and harnessed. Yeah, I know, I totally know I sound like Gollum from LOTR right now.

I've been talking to the travelers that arrived on the island this morning. One and all, they have said that they were drawn here, as if my blog's words, my will, was speaking in their ear. "I have captured them in my net" it seems.

One of the new travelers, Paperback Voom, turned to me this afternoon while lingering at a spring in the jungle and said “You don’t know what you’ve started here, miss."

"More people are coming”. He had this hopeful gleam in his eye, as if this was for some sort of greater good. At that point, we realized that it wasn’t just the island that drew us together, it was the power within. My will. Channeled through the energy captured in the Involvium to connect with those that would be touched.

I now believe this stuff brings out the best in all of us. Kinda gives me hope for our future. And the more I work with the team from Involvium Ventures Mining, the more I realize that there are great, great things ahead.

Well, I should go. The sun will be setting soon and I don’t want to miss it. Even though I’ve seen it every day, it always feels like the first time.

-- J.S. out.

People Ho!

A small group of travelers ended up on the island this morning. At first, I wasn’t sure if I had conjured them up through the Involvium Effect, or if someone else had. But they’re real, and very friendly too. It’s a pretty diverse and worldly group, actually. They remind me of a Benetton ad. They had this wistful look about them, and when they met me, they actually knew who I was.

They all know Trish, too. I kinda feel guilty calling Trish a flake since apparently she only had nice things to say about me to them. These are people I would’ve probably never met outside of the island, so it’s kinda cool that I did (cue single tear). Trish, if you’re reading this, I’m sorry I called you an uber-flake. You’re still my favorite (and only) sister and I love you, girl. I hope to be reunited with you soon.

Friday, August 24, 2007

The Nature of Involvium Energy...

It's late now... I reported my findings to the team, and we've been working like fiends to try to replicate the effect.

So now, its been confirmed that the Involvium Energy did manifest my little flying creature from the page. We've tested it a few times. Our engineer would draw something, pass a current through the involvium so that it released energy through the lens...

And whatever was there would manifest on the island. Some small things, like my creature, would be quick. A couple of hours at the most. Some of the larger items, they are still manifesting. Growing outward from the motes of involvium sparks that float about the island like ephemeral ghosts of fireflies.

Was it the drawings themselves? No. We wrote words on the papers, too. And what they said were manifest when exposed to the energy focused by the crystal. It seems an expression of our will is all that is necessary... something that focuses our intent.

As for my little creature, he stays with me. I feel like Prospero... controlling elemental forces I don't understand. So I've named my little "it" Caliban. Hopefully, he'll have a better temperament than his literary namesake. Of course, Prospero's darker nature conjured spirits he couldn't control... I worry about that too.

Our little island camp is now populated with our dreams, with more being born every hour. I know I've been sounding positively literary the last post or two... I guess the events of the last while have temporarily taken my snark-generator offline.

Trish, is this world of dreams and possibility what you have found?

An Amazing Discovery!

I woke up this morning, and something unbelievable has happened... we've been scramblign around to explain it and I haven't had a chance to write about it until now. It's still mind-boggling.

After writing to you and scanning the picture of my little dream-friend last night, I left it near the machines. Between one of our focusing lenses used for the scanning device and a piece of involvium, to be specific.

And what did I find when I woke up?... my dream creature had disappeared from the page! But hold it, that's not the amazing part.

Sitting right near the paper was my dream creature. Real, three-dimensional... and physically here as I am.

Holy crap, what have they found? What IS this stuff? At this very moment, our engineer is adjusting the machine to see if he can duplicate this effect. I'm shaking -- not sure if I want it to succeed or not.

Stay tuned...

That Vivid Dream Again...

I guess the headphones worked for a little while. I did fall asleep... for a bit.

And I had that dream again. I was flying. Soaring over the island, diving down into deep lagoons and finding places I would never be able to see if I couldn't lift into the air...

And that creature came, in my dream. As ever, not hostile. And it flew with me. Guiding me aroudn the island? And the more he/she/it is my traveling companion, the more I notice details, how jumbled up it is. Hooves, butterfly wings, cat-like ears, bush-baby face...

The dream was so strange and beautiful, I can't shake it. I had to get up to our camp's little field table and draw... I've posted a sketch of my little dream friend. I kind of like him.

Another one of those nights.

Another strange night and I'm awake in the middle. Everybody's still feeling the creative energy pinging around, and its been hard to sleep. I can't stop drawing, thinking, theorizing. It's like I'm being charged to too full. The rest of the team are like that too. My sketchbook is going to be full in a day if I keep this up.

I've come up with an idea, though: I'm going to put on my headphones and blast the thoughts that are scurrying through my head and encourage them to settle down somewhere else for the night.

Let's see if it works. I almost don't want to go to sleep. Everything seems so vivid. Even the night seems alight with life and the sky almost glows with a purple light. Nights are so strange here...

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Involvium and the Mysterious Metaverse Energy

Well, some amazing stuff happening. And yours truly did say I was going to clear up the how this stuff works and get back to you. And now is the time!

From observing some of the team's research, I'm beginning to grasp what little the energy company knows about Involvium. I thought I'd share, especially since I read a few misunderstandings out there in some recent blogger posts. They reported that involvium is an energy source, and that's not 100% accurate. (oops, I guess I should clear this up a bit!)

According to the team, Involvium is a crystal that was found by IEV's founder, Phinneas Darcy, while on an expedition. He had suspected its existence, apparently, when he originally discovered the energy. Its makeup still baffles the expedition, though they have been able to rig up a few devices to harness its potential.

This energy freely flows through the metaverse on its own.

Involvium isn't the energy itself, though it seem that it can either store it, or focus it (maybe both?). From what I've seen, it might have more properties. While the discovery of involvium crystal is unique to the IEV team, the energy itself has been present all along in the metaverse. Part of the team's mission is to not only find out about involvium, but about the energy and how it works.

Stay tuned ...

My Sis.

All thru this long, strange night keep thinking about Trish. We used to be close. What happened? Was it the Metaverse? Was it more than that?

A Vivid Dream...

I dozed off for about 15 minutes and had one of the most vivid dreams I’'ve ever had. I was flying.

I was gliding over the island, and I saw this incredible-looking strange creature. I’'m not sure what it was exactly. Looked like a cross between a monkey and a bird, with wings sprouting from the back. It didn't want to hurt me... it wanted to fly with me. It was looking at me, seeing me for me. For the record, I haven’t touched any of the mushrooms here.

Sketchbook from Tonight --

It’'s this island... I’'ve never felt so creative. You should see my notebook. I've never sketched so much in one sitting. I have a throbbing pain in my neck from not looking up the entire time I had my head buried in my pad. But here are some of the sketches that are the result. The team, me (after this all-night rager of course. I'm much more together looking normally, I swear. lol)... and an amazing old sculpture I found crumbling at the entrance of a cave temple. Or did I dream it? It's not clear at the moment...

Late Night Renaissance

Wow. I can't sleep tonight. I kept wanting to write, paint, draw, sculpt. Imagine a twelve-latte caffeine high, but without the side-effects (twelve trips to the little girl’s room)... so far. I spent all night sketching in my book. I think mostly everyone in the expedition stayed up too. They were using those weird tubular machines, taking soil samples, mineral samples, and of course Involvium samples. Midway through the night, the expedition folks even broke into song. Sounded like an old sea chanty from Pirates of the Caribbean, but was much more inspirational and cool. I even joined in.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Quick Late Night Note.

Dreamt of Trish... and the orange glow of that Involvium ore... with motes of fireflies dancing in its depths. Felt compelled to tell you guys. Will try to get some shut eye...


We kept following the footsteps today, but we hit a dead end, literally. The footsteps end at the base of what looks like a giant Roman wall. Looks like it’s been there for centuries. Of course, given the craziness with this island shifting form nightly, who knows how long its really been there?

One of the expedition leaders found a shaft leading directly under the place. They pulled out that weird machine they use to follow traces of “The Involvium Effect”. That’s when they found it, glowing in all its amber radiance. INVOLVIUM. A big vein of it branching out on the shaft walls. I wonder if anyone else has been mining this stuff. I stared at it for what seems like hours. Man, I'm not a jewelry kind of girl, but that orange shimmer is almost hypnotizing -- like it's alive. I know it’s shallow, but JLo can keep her pink diamond (the one Ben Afflek gave here – BTW, what ever happened to that guy?). Anyway, this stuff is amazing.

I didn't want to be here, but I have to admit I've seen things that you people wouldn't believe (yes, its a quote. No, if you don't know from where I won't enlighten you).

I hear the folks at the company have a plan for all this involvium mineral's usage. I'’ll eavesdrop where I can... Stay tuned.

IEV Advertises on YouTube

It was inevitable, I guess. Involvium Energy Ventures has started their public-facing advertising campaign in the general media-sphere. Here's their feel-good ad on YouTube:

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

The Involvium Energy Effect?

I’ve followed the footsteps for miles. We stopped to make camp and I checked my email. Can you believe my editor is making fun of me? He thinks I’m making “changing island” stuff up.

“The Involvium Effect”? Come on, Harry! I don’t write fiction, you know that. I couldn’t make this stuff up if I tried. You have to see this place to believe it and he just doesn’t get it. And he doesn’t think his readers would get it either. I may have been hesitant to come out here at first, but this place is INCREDIBLE. And if my editor doesn’t believe what he’s reading, then I guess I’ll have to find another publication with the same vision these explorers have. His loss.

You’re lame, Harry.

J.S. Reporting from Wonderland...

Okay, I’m not a mental case. The whole geography of this island has to be changing literally overnight. We set up camp on the beach and woke up in a snow-peaked mountain range. Ashton Kutcher, sweetie, unless you’re here, and you’re planning on jumping out with cameras, then I’m officially freaked out. I don’t want to wake up on the edge of a mile-high cliff tomorrow.

Monday, August 20, 2007

Memories on the Line.

I caught myself staring at the makeshift clothesline that the team has set up, thinking about my sister, Trish. Again. There was a t-shirt with a monkey face on it hanging on the line, and I was reminded of our adventure camping a few summers ago when she hung up her Paul Frank t-shirt (that I had gotten for her birthday) and forgot about it. An hour into the drive home, we had to turn around and go back for it, despite my objections that I'd buy her another.

I found some footsteps heading down a path. I’m going to follow them before the landscape pulls the ole’ switcheroo on me. Again.

Unfamiliar Places I've Already Visited?

There is a giant boulder on the beach that wasn’t there yesterday! I swear! I’m not crazy. I'm not sleep deprived, and I didn’t eat any of the funky mushrooms growing around the island. I don't care what anybody says, I'm thoroughly creeped out. “Onward!” the team says. Wish I knew which direction that is.

Sunday, August 19, 2007

What Kind of Place is This?

This is one WEIRD island. Something about it just feels “off” to me. And as a side note, our navigation beacons and map software doesn't work here, or else I'd have you locating us from an online map program.

I went exploring today and lost my way back to camp. It's strange, I used a set of markers that the IEV explorers left on a few trees, but they were off. I ended up on another side of the island, by some waterfalls. How does that happen? How does a trail of breadcrumbs lie to you? Ugh, maybe I'm just working too hard; I've been pulling long days alongside the technicians.

Saturday, August 18, 2007

Observation Notebook, Expedition Day 2

When exploring today with a couple of the team members on a survey, and we ran across
evidence that we're not the first ones here... or not alone. An old treehouse made of flotsam and jetsam, and a totem of some kind. Both look like they haven't been used in a while.

Here are a few sketches. I finally found my sketchbook and got the mechanic to help me out to scan it. As I thought, one of those things WAS a scanner... of sorts.

Anyway, here's my attempt at rendering what I saw:

Friday, August 17, 2007

Observation Notebook, Expedition Day 1

Snuck away while everyone was getting settled and did some exploring today on my own. Probably shouldn't have... ran across this large volcano caldera rising out of the jungle. I wonder if it's active.

My First Day on Safari.

I've made it to the island. It's certainly in the middle of nowhere. Nice beach, though. Wish I'd brought my swimsuit. The expedition manager is a fellow member of the female persuasion... maybe I can get one from her.

But she's got her hands full right now. She's responsible for the equipment and supplies, and they've brought a lot of gear for this expedition. It almost unbelievable how much one person can keep on them... it almost defies physics.

I can't make head or tails of half this stuff. Its all rivets and wires, pipes and valves. It looks like a garage sale at Dr. Who's house. Once I get settled and dig-up my sketchbook, I'll sketch some of the stuff. One of the team members is a pretty great sketch artist. Maybe he'll show me some contour techniques to improve my own modest drawings.

Maybe I can even post one... one of these weirdo contraptions has got to be a scanner.

Anyway, a bit of reportage: The team is setting up camp and getting ready to run some experiments. They're pretty focused on a device with some big lens on it and an articulating arm. And having some trouble with it. While they get it up and running, yours truly might do the Nancy Drew thing and explore the island. I am, after all, a bona-fide certified journalista. I don't know if this story is going to add up to anything. All of its still seems like hocus-pocus to me.

Any of you guys hear about Twitter? Its this system where you can send out these short blog posts to a network of your friends. I've got my handy blackberry, so maybe I'll post observations on it as I'm out in the bush exploring. That is, if I can get a signal out here of the boonies...

Tomorrow out!

Thursday, August 16, 2007

An Expedition Into the Unknown Awaits!

Ok, so I've met up with this outfit -- Involvium Energy Ventures. Their get-up-and-go attitudes, and that almost-mad sparkle in their eyes, remind me of Don Quixote. Or at least how I'd imagine him. A whole group of Don Quixotes yelling out "here we come, world!"

And what is the cause of this enthusiasm, you might ask? Well, they think they may have detected a huge concentration of this energy they call "The Involvium Effect" in the far corners of the Metaverse. They say this indicates the possible presence of some mineral called "Involvium". No, I never heard of it before, either.

Although it does explain the company's name. I originally thought they were trying to do one of those weird corporate names made up of nonsense words like "Alcenture" or "Innovent".

Anyway, its got them all worked-up because this Involvium stuff has some effect on this energy and its really rare. Not quite clear on what exactly the effect is. (Note to self: I should probably get that cleared up before deadline).

These guys, I admit are pretty cool. Their energy is contagious. And without a ready supply of grande half-caff nearby, I'll need it!

Tomorrow out!

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Time to Break the Silence

Sorry about the recent drought of updates! It's been a long, strange trip and I have some catching up to do. Been getting used to the atmosphere here and making observations. Filed my first post, some background stuff, but you won't see it until later I'm sure. My editor wants a complete series first.

This will have to do for now. I have to another event I'm checking out in 15 minutes! Will finally meet this expedition group tomorrow. Guess they've been busy too.

Tomorrow... out?

Saturday, July 28, 2007

New Post with 30% Less Drama!

Sorry I went off on that tangent about my sister the uber-flake. This should be about my gig, I know. I’m just hoping that I can figure out what her fascination is with the Metaverse by seeing it first-hand.

But enough about my personal drama... with 30k in student loans and plaque on my wall claiming that I'm a journalist, I guess now’s as good a time as any to put on my professional hat and give you the scoop.

So, the Metaverse awaits reportage by yours truly. I’ve never been one to fall for the hype, so don’t expect to hear many ooohs and ahhhs. In my last post, I was telling you about this company I’m doing the story on: Involvium Energy Ventures. Cue "Also sprach Zarathustra" (that's the "2001" music for you philistines *wink). Actually, most people haven’t heard of them... but just so you know, they're the ones leading the expedition into the uncharted wilds of the Metaverse.

My editor is trying to convince me this will be "interesting". It's undiscovered country folks! Oh right... I almost forgot. Don't fall into the hype. But ok, I admit it. I'm a little intrigued...

...VERY little.

- J.S. Tomorrow out!

Thursday, July 26, 2007


LOL! Yup, it’s my new blogger name. I know it’s cheesy... but hey, if I’'m going to a Brave New World, why keep my old “unbrave” name? This is my first post, so please be gentle. The editor wanted me to start this blog to coincide with a puff-piece I’'m working on about some company exploring the Metaverse. So, here I am.

For those of you keeping score (then again, I just met you!), it’s been 33 days since I last saw my sister, Trish. She was always a self-absorbed little freak. Last time we talked I had to practically blackmail her just to check-in with mom and dad to let them know she was still alive. Now she’s disappeared somewhere in the Metaverse doing who knows what. That'’s why I agreed to take this gig. To be honest, I'’ve been morbidly curious for a while to see the Metaverse -- I’'ve just never had a reason. Now I have one: to find my sister and give her a swift kick in the @#$%!