Jace Carlton
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Performing Songwriter - Freelance Writer / Photojournalist - Poet - Author

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"It doesn't matter who you love, or how you love, but that you love" - Rod McKuen

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"It was a dark and stormy night ..."

Jace's first experiences in writing came like most ... in elementary school.  But a spark was lit inside that created many embers.  He enjoyed writing stories just for fun and spent many hours reading books that fired his imagination.

He also enjoyed reading poetry and had the opportunity to write some of his own beginning in an advance literature class in 8th grade.  All he knew at the time was the standard rhyme and rhythm style and so his earliest poems followed that same pattern, but he grew tired of this knowing that it just didn't fit the way he wanted to express himself and so he put aside writing any more poetry for a few years.

In the meantime Jace began writing songs which didn't bother him in keeping with that rhyme and rhythm pattern (more on this here).

Love is usually what makes someone think and sometimes even write poetically and while studying and traveling in Europe during the summer between his junior and senior years of high school,  he fell in love and the heart strings pulled out his pen and pad and once again he was writing.  But, like his earlier poems, he just couldn't shake the rhyme and rhythm, so after a few months he once again set aside his poetry (but continued with his songwriting).

Then, after Jace started college he made a discovery that would change his style of writing poetry forever.  The content of Jace's poems were either about the desire to love, the total joy of being in love, or the pain of a crushing heartbreak.  During a visit to a local bookstore Jace found himself in the poetry section and came across a book with a title that tugged at his heart, "Stanyan Street and Other Sorrows" by Rod McKuen.  He began to read through it and discovered a kindred spirit and knew he'd found the style of writing that he'd been searching for so long to find ... free verse.  He could now say what he wanted to say the way he wanted to say it, and from there his writing never ended.

Over the next few years Jace wrote constantly, expressing every exciting moment and every shattering heartbreak with equal passion.  His work was very personal and private, only sharing his poems with his closest friends, if at all.  They urged him to get his poems published but Jace declined.  He could bare his heart and soul to those close to him but not to an unseen public.

His friends insisted and some even submitted some of his poems into competitions without his knowledge and when he started receiving high recognition and accolades for his work, some poems being published in anthologies, and others chosen as a part of wedding ceremonies, he began to reconsider his hesitancy to have his work published.

During this same time in his life he had continued to read the works of Rod McKuen, seeing him in concert, buying his albums of spoken word and songs.  He saw how Rod's first three books, "Stanyan Street and Other Sorrows", "Listen To The Warm", and "Lonesome Cities", seemed to fit toegther in a trilogy and so he sat down one weekend and took his own poems and began to divide them in a similar way; like "Stanyan ..." Jace created a book made up of poems of a broken heart, the loss of love, the searching for love, and like "Listen ..." he created a book that spoke of the hope, excitement and passions of love found, and like "Lonesome ..." he created a book that mixed these emotional highs and lows along with some poems written for friends.  The result was his own trilogy:

"Sounds of Darkness"
"Rainwater Tapestry"

and
"Breaking The Stillness"

"Sounds of Darkness" was published and received tremendous critical acclaim, including very high praise from his mentor, Rod McKuen.  "Rainwater Tapestry", "Breaking The Stillness" and Jace's other books of poetry:

"So High"
"Whispers In The Night"

"Cries And Whispers"
"Hand in Hand"
"The Bridge To Forever"

and
"Offerings"

are only in manuscript form right now, but Jace has given serious thought to publishing them and making them available through this website in the future.

Some excerpts from these books may be found here.

Jace also has several other writing projects in various stages of completion, including creating compilations of inspirational quotes he's published on his Change Your Stars!  website, and an early history of the small town in California he grew up in titled, "The Village: Growing Up in Small Town America".

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