Well, geez…but nope, I’m not taking it personal. So my first rejection letter for Bottom Rail came back to me with promising comments, but no thanks in the end. I think I am supposed to be disappointed, but like cutting those dreads, I’m feeling rather more than neutral. I sort of expected this because I really didn’t fine tooth comb my ms—neither did I bless its intent, purpose, theme, which I’m still trying to figure out. I have people who do this writing stuff and yet, no one has told me how to find the significance and compose a damn good query. In fact, my query was so long that I could have easily written one more chapter to the book and I guess I’m not supposed to do that….have an extensive explanation for the work. It’s suppose to “speak for itself.” Yeah, yeah, yeah, I’ve heard it all. Oddly, I’m having fun spending hardly any time just on this one process alone and this way, I don’t have to think about a second work. The question is: Am I really a writer? I think so, but this other part to it, the selling it, the pitching it, the Pr-ing it is rather a difficult animal to choke, and I haven’t even really begun to push it out the door. Can I imagine if I put a lot of effort into it? I’m trying. Sort of.
Anyway, another slip for me and my hopes to become a great, famous writer is Stephen King’s September article in the The New York Times Sunday Book Review.
He wrote: “…I read scores of stories that felt not quite dead on the page, I won’t go that far, but airless, somehow, and self-referring. These stories felt show-offy rather than entertaining, self-important rather than interesting, guarded and self-conscious rather than gloriously open, and worst of all, written for editors and teachers rather than for readers.”
Which of these apply to me? Well let’s start with not quite openly glorious and maybe there’s a tad of guardedness. I’m working on all this: when I find time. Then I read on and found a little more umpf: “Talent can’t help itself; it roars along in fair weather or foul, not sparing the fireworks. It gets emotional. It struts its stuff.” But the true heartbreak is his statement that he doesn’t want “some fraidy-cat’s writing school imitation of Faulkner, or some stream-of-consciousness about what Bob Dylan once called ‘the true meaning of a pear’.” Should I cry…? Because I do Faulkner and I do stream-of-consciousness in my own way. Feels good and at times rather sticky.
I can’t even imagine a life without Faulkner, but I guess I should come to the realization that I might have to change. Sort of.
And what's the difference between "strutting" and "self-importance"--as far as writing is concerned? Help!
It's May 2012 and nothing has changed since November.11. I am all smiles at my relationship and myself. My honey and I continue to amaze each other on a daily basis. We're still ever so 'in' with each other. I completed my MA in literature last May and I'm teaching four college English courses to really smart students. I am hopeful to enter a doctorate program soon. This way, I can run out.All is scary good.
upon hearing your voice life again expands like moon crest like pomegranates swell to the sun and you are patient because god calls
when he came for you this morning you were bent into the flower bed singing black hymns so he left you alone until this third afternoon but even then he found you elbow deep in jewel weed with a mouthful of figs from a nearby tree again he waited because each time seemed to him an inconvenience and a wrong moment
and it was your persistent humming that drove him up and back until he could get his timing perfect he waited another day or so until
your gardening tools rest into porch corners your paring knife shines deeply into a drawer your hair comb lies slanted in a shoebox your wedding band hides in the mattress your fishing rod stays stolen
the sound of your voice desires to sing or hum but this time is perfect he has covered you like lavender-colored silence but he has also added streaks of olive green and pink because this is what the other soul-folk has told him to do and he has become tired in the process and therefore begins to rush sonances of your body he finds you the least complex when you are not outdoors digging in that garden, humming hymns and thriving and for a moment he questions his own timing its perfection and everything goes accordingly until he finds you have buried fruit peels and wandering jew petals underneath your back this does not anger him but it tilts his agility to deliver you and in his own questioning and presence of smells that he cannot privilege all this over powers his choice all this reels his otherwise perfection into letting you go
when i see you sitting in the plush squares of limitless St. Augustine your eyes are lit like crystal warmed soil releases from each of your hands
how did i get to this point this point of knowing you for you are nearly a century old