December 2018

I’ve been busy lately. The creative work got pushed to the back burner for a while.  However, I completed and sent out two new stories in the last couple of months. So that’s progress. I received good news regarding a reprint of a story. Plus, an editor has asked me to rewrite a story that he liked but found some difficulty with, so I’m hoping I ultimately sell that. I’m pleased to hear from a Canadian magazine that my story is in the last selection round there. Crossing my fingers because if I get into that magazine, it’s a new one to me and very well distributed.  December 9th – I had another ‘2nd round’ email which makes me very happy as this one was for a prestigious USA magazine!

This morning I received my contract for the poem “Dangerous Gods” to be published in Polar Borealis #8 this month. So I’m excited about that.

Also, it’s the holiday season and I’ll take some time off my day job to work on creative endeavors.

December 30, 2017

I’ve been revising and sending out stories this month. Its been great to have a few days off corporate job.

Spent Christmas Eve worried sick about elderly father, who was moved from his care home to a hospital.  Made the usual large Christmas feast for friends on the 25th. Saw a few movies since: The Big Sick, Downsizing and Murder on the Orient Express.  All enjoyable, loved The Big Sick, was pleasantly surprised by Downsizing and enjoyed the Orient Express as a good Agatha Christie film.

Hoping to get back into writing quick enough to finish the WIF Darkside Contest this year. Especially as I have a committed teen cowriter for  one idea.

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December musings

I’m starting the preparation for the big day – Christmas Day when I cook like I’m expecting a whole army but get only a small platoon.

What’s the ‘writer’ career up to during holidays? Especially vaca time away from busy corporate writing job?

So far, I’ve worked on changing a short story into a movie idea. It’s for a contest looking for dark SF, fantasy or horror shows. I normally don’t / can’t enter contests as they’re for people who haven’t sold yet or aren’t members of the WGC or WGA. But this one is a good excuse to adapt a story I have.

Also, I cook and see friends. No one does any real business this time of year in tv. Or film.

I’m also reading. I love books on writing. My newest acquisitions are kobo versions of Save The Cat by Blake Snyder and Max Adams updated version of one of my favorites The New Screenwriter’s Survival Guide.

Max Adams’ book is mostly for full-time movie writers but there are great tips for all of us.

I wish I’d re-read her chapters on agents before continuing with an agent who absolutely couldn’t sell me as a writer. Nice guy but not for me. I was too involved in trying to make a living and developing my day-job career as a tech writer to think about it.
To be fair, too I also didn’t generate the number of scripts needed per year to become a movie writer. The third time I turned down a gig from him, he dropped me which was expected, too. But the gigs weren’t totally ‘writing’ and not good enough to replace the day job.
Now I think I’ll be working on the prose and tv/film and only look for a new tv agent when I have a good portfolio built up.

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Ali Matheson photo gingerbread typewriter

 

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Christmas cactus blooming

 

January and clear skies above

In the new year, the writer must make some goals.
For me, the goals for my creative side are all about my novel. I’m 33,000 words in now. This novel started with the Clarion West workshop fund-raiser. I’ve been working on it via my IPad since.
I had a bad period when ancient IPad died – it just wouldn’t take a charge anymore. After consulting my Mac guru and the Apple store, realized it wasn’t fixable.
Christmas was very good to me. My dear friends gave me a new IPad mini. Now the novel is sailing along again! Thanks to those who believe in my talent!
So, I delivered chapter 4 to my first reader last week. My new goal is chapter 5 delivered this week. I do rough versions of between 500 and 1000 words per writing night. Since the child dances 5 days per week, I can get 1 or 2 good writing nights in each week. Doesn’t sound like a lot but it has delivered 33 thousand words so far – all done after I do my busy corporate day job.

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Late November

This time of year is difficult for me. It’s dark out and cold.
Day job is less amusing than normal and sometimes grates on my nerves.
I miss Jessica’s late father a lot. We were both born in November. He was such a bright spark in the universe and burnt out way too soon.
So, what do I do?
See friends and share coffee or a meal. Email his brother, also a friend. Find, buy, and post his other children some presents, hoping they arrive in far off Australia and the UK before Easter.
And decorate like a crazy thing.
Yes, it sounds dumb and it probably is, but it works. I’ve always loved Christmas and it needs to start a lot earlier now.
So, here is our little Village of holiday cheer.

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