March 10, 2008
I've been ramping up the writing again. Which is why I haven't been posting here after a flurry of entries a couple of weeks ago. See, I started ramping up the writing, and then began writing some projects that I hope to sell soon. Part of that ol' "professional writer" scene is actually getting paid for one's writing. (Not that I don't love writing for y'all for free, mind you.)
One of my new short stories has already been bounced in the best possible way (and I will likely develop it into a novel); another is likely to be sold (although one doesn't count one's chickens until they've come home to roost) -- I was asked for a minor revision, which I've done, so now I just have to wait and see if it passes muster -- and I just completed a third story which I feel pretty good about and I've submitted it to its intended market.
As is always the case with selling short fiction, it is likely to be weeks before I know anything about the disposition of the two that are still in play, but I feel good just getting stuff out there. Oh, and the piece that has already been rejected for its intended market is going to go back out to other markets shortly, even though I still plan to write its novel companion.
In the meantime, some light humor that I collaborated on with a friend of mine back in our *high school* days is about to be included in an anthology that will be published this coming April 1st. It's not my best stuff -- for that matter, it's not the best work that I produced in collaboration with this particular writing partner -- nor is it the material I would have chosen for the "Best Of" that it's going to appear in, but it's a book with a print run of 5,000 or greater, so it's still a publication credit.
And as a recent writing workshop reminded me, we are often not the best judges of our own work.
I'm glad to have finally gotten that third story finished this morning. I'm pretty sure that means my output for this year has already surpassed my fiction writing for all of 2007. Now let's see if there are some folks out there who would like (to pay) to read it.
March 28, 2008
As a general rule, it's unwise to quote someone out of context, lest their original, true meaning be completely distorted. Nonetheless, this quote that I read today is extraordinary in its truth and beauty both within and beyond its original context, and independently of she who spoke.
That said, our current Secretary of State, Condoleezza Rice, was interviewed this week regarding her thoughts on Senator Obama's recent speech about race in America. As a follow-up question, she was asked today "what Americans had learned about race since the civil rights movement." (I'm quoting from the Associated Press article written by Sue Pleming.) Her response is astoundingly true, far beyond the scope of the question posed:
"You have to work hard every day to make the extraordinary, moving and inspirational words of our founding documents a reality for all Americans."
Of all the things that have been said so far during this campaign season, that one sentiment (uttered by a non-contestant, no less) rings the truest of all.
March 31, 2008
On Sunday morning at around 3am or so local time, I complete my fortieth lap around the sun. I am officially older than Jack Benny.
A few friends came over while I prepared a batch of jambalaya, which I made spicier than usual (but still not spicy enough). Several of our guests have kids Alex & Nolan's ages, so the kids all played upstairs while the grown-ups enjoyed grown-up conversation downstairs. It was an enjoyable, low-key affair. Good food, good friends, kids safely (for the most part) entertaining themselves. It had snowed the day before (very unusual for this part of the country at this time of year), which leant to the "lazy Sunday" quality of the day.
All-in-all, not a bad way to mark the occasion.
Someone asked me if I'd be picking up a fast car or a motorcycle soon. There were other references to middle age thrown around. Friends of mine who have known me long enough will note that I've been in a mid-life crisis since approximately seventh grade, so I've gotten most of the living-dangerously urges out of my system, I think.
Our house saw another rite-of-passage by Monday morning. Alexander woke up having lost his first baby tooth. By the end of the day, Alex had lost a second tooth; both had been loose for a quite a while. In the morning, the tooth fairy is probably going to have to pay a little visit. What's the going rate for a tooth these days? Is it still a quarter?
My little boy is growing up. And I've aged gracelessly into a fat old man. I guess that means my parents are older than dirt. Bwahahaha.
Now that I think about it, Jack Benny accomplished a great deal by the time he was 39. I guess I'd better get cracking.
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