Archive for September, 2010

Joy To The World (Part Three)

September 30, 2010

Even with that said, son, I still feel like I owe you a specific apology, so let me say now how sorry I am for just how unfair that thought was to you.

But, oddly enough, I’m actually glad I had it.

Why?  Well . . .

In the process of realizing how unfair the thought was to you, I also realized just how unfair the thought was to me as well, something I wouldn’t have done if you hadn’t been part of the equation.

So . . . thanks for that.

See how easy it is?  You’re not even born yet, and you’re already doing good things for me.

Joy To The World (Part Two)

September 29, 2010

My immediate reaction (squelched before it was expressed) was “He’s my son, you know.  He’ll be a bundle of something, no doubt, but I don’t know about joy!”

I squelched this knee jerk “witty” reaction almost as quickly as I thought it, because even as I was thinking it, I was profoundly aware of just how unfair that thought was to you, son.  Of course you can be a bundle of joy if you want, and never let your father’s fondness for a quick quip ever make you think otherwise!  In fact, I encourage you to be a bundle of joy and to bring joy to all those around you.  You might even consider trying to bring joy to the world as a whole.

I’m told it’s a pretty good gig, if you can get it.

Joy To The World (Part One)

September 28, 2010

We’re getting really close to your arrival now, son, and that means that even though you’ve been a nigh-perpetual topic of conversation for others when they talk to me for many a month now, the topic of you is getting closer and closer to being the only thing most people want talk to me about;  “The end of the nigh,” you might say.  (Just ignore that if you don’t get it.  It’s just me being “witty” . . . but only just.)

This is expected, normal, and doesn’t bother me in the slightest, and I wouldn’t mention it at all if someone hadn’t recently referred to you as “a bundle of joy.”

Now this phrase is also expected, normal, and didn’t bother me in the slightest . . .

But my reaction to it did.

New Category

September 27, 2010

“Letters to L.”

It occurred to me today that my son needed his own category here, and now he has one.

And if you think this is a prelude to me talking more about him tomorrow . . .

. . . you’d be right.

Latest Book Update (Epilogue)

September 24, 2010

Speaking of things I might have to concede . . .

Point one:   Despite all the trouble it’s caused me, I still have the inclination to respond to someone in the manner they approach/respond to me with.  It’s no longer an automatic habit anymore, I’m happy to say, because while the inclination works fine when people are being enjoyable to be around, it has a tendency to exacerbate matters in less pleasant situations.

Point two:  I detest form letters almost as much as I detest saturation bombing approaches.

So with those two points in mind, I might have to concede that wishing the agent continued good luck in finding projects more to their interest, could be misconstrued as me being snotty.  I was sincere in my wish, I assure you, and was only responding in kind to the way I was being addressed, but still . . .a case could easily be made on how I shouldn’t have done that.

My only defense is it felt right at the time.

Really . . . really right.

P.S.  I decided  I couldn’t wait until Monday, and have already started that project I mentioned.

Latest Book Update (Part Three)

September 23, 2010

So, in other words, it’ll be a little while before I know if Plan B has panned out or not (and yes, I have a Plan C), and in the meantime . . .

Honestly, I’ve got to get back to work . . . writing work, I mean.  I made the right call in taking even more time off to prepare for the impending birth and all the thousand and one tasks that has entailed, and I know post-birth will bring its own challenges and thousand and one tasks, so this is perilously close to the worst possible time to start a new project.

But I don’t care.

I’ve been climbing the walls for the better part of a month, at least, and it’s past time I got back to it.  There’s a small project I can start on Monday to get my feet wet again, and I can figure out where I want to go from there.

I won’t call it a sickness or an addiction, this need of mine to write . . . but I might have to concede the touch of madness.

Latest Book Update (Part Two)

September 22, 2010

So having tested the waters, and come up empty, it’s time to cast the net wider.  It was only one rejection, after all, and every author I’ve ever talked to has admitted to the temptation to wallpapering a room with the rejection slips they’ve accumulated over the years, so I might as well take pride in starting in earnest my own collection.  If everything times up right, I should start hearing back from my inquiries right about the time my son is born, when I’ll have the least time/focus to answer.

This is what is known as tempting Fate.

I hope she’s less offended and more indulgently amused at my presumption.

Latest Book Update (Part One)

September 21, 2010

When I started my research into finding an agent, I was basically advised to research carefully, then “contact a hundred agents, in the hopes that ten contact you back, and that one of those ten will be the agent you’re looking for.”  Now I know why I was advised this, but I’ve always detested the saturation bombing approach to anything, so . . . I did my research, compiled my list (admittedly short of a hundred, but long enough), and paused.

One name in particular from my list stood out for me . . . specialized in fiction, an avid proponent of fantasy/sci-fi (a much maligned genre in some circles, I had come to learn), active on-line presence, etc. etc.  This agent seemed the perfect first contact, so I threw the advice I’d been given to the wind, privately smiled at the idea of what a great story this would be if it panned out, sent out my inquiry and waited the required month for a response.  (Yes . . . a month, and it’s standard for many agents to not contact you back at all.  Every business has it’s quirks, I know, and even though I understand how this one came about, I still shake my head at it.)

When the response came, to put it bluntly, not only did I not get out of the starting gate, I was gunned down at the starting gate:  No interest in seeing the full manuscript, the standard “Good luck elsewhere,” and that was it.

Not . . . quite the story I was hoping to get from this.

But neither unexpected nor unprepared for either.

A Clarification

September 20, 2010

While I am sure this is profoundly unnecessary since I’ve covered this in multiple elsewhere, even so, I’m doing this under the principle of “If for any reason there is misinformation on your front page, you clarify/correct/retract on the front page, not hidden in the back” . . . or the comments, in this case.

On Friday I said that Rod Serling died because he was mowing his lawn.  I had a source for this, but I didn’t link to it because I could only link to the page, and couldn’t give a specific pointer to the location on the page of the information, so I just encouraged people to “look it up.”  In the process, I inadvertently proved a truism of the Internet Universe:

Posting something incorrect generates more responses than all the postings of correct information and the postings of a request for correct information combined.

From here, I’ll copy and paste my response from the comments:

Since the reference turned out to be more obscure than I anticipated (you’re not the only person that mentioned this to me), I did a little more digging beyond my original source (IMDB: “On June 28, 1975, he was mowing his lawn, when all of a sudden, he began to experience some chest pains, and collapsed. His neighbor found him and called the ambulance. When he arrived in the operating room, the doctors saw that the artery leading to his heart was disintegrating and there was no hope for him. He died later that day in the hospital.”)

There seems to be some confusion on the point of which heart attack went with the mowing instance, but most sources I found said he was mowing the lawn during his first heart attack, and had a quick downward spiral from there, so I’ll go with that version then.

Even so . . . it was still the mowing the lawn that triggered that downward spiral. You’ve been warned.”

Two thoughts come to my mind from all this:

#1.  I’m happy beyond words that when I said “Look it up,” somebody (actually several somebodies) took my words to heart and did just that.

#2.  I wonder what would have happened if I said “Make me some nachos” instead.

It’s worth thinking about . . . food for thought, one might say.

I Blame It On Zoning Out

September 17, 2010

Pretty much every time I’m mowing the lawn, the same thought always keeps coming back to me:

Rod Serling died because he was doing this.” (Seriously, look it up.)