Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Wednesday, October 3, 2007
Waning Moon
Drizzly and warm

Belated Happy Birthdays to both Brenda Birch and Colin Galbraith! I hope many of your dreams come true this year – you deserve it.

As I mentioned yesterday, I found it difficult to work on the serene scenes at the beginning of Prince Paisley’s Chintz yesterday, due to the frenetic energy of this neighborhood. So I switched to typing the draft of Revenge Tangents, since the beginning of that is set in Manhattan. It worked much better. Maybe I’ll pack up PPC today and try to write somewhere quiet. I’d say a library, but, unfortunately, people seem to have forgotten that libraries are for quiet work and now treat them like coffee shops. Come to think of it, it might work better to work in a coffee shop. We’ll see how the day shapes out. I have to finish and polish two articles before I can go anywhere.

The theatre was fine. I caught up with everyone. Someone made brownies; someone didn’t get a promised job on a new show and now has to scramble; someone is doing a bread-baking intensive at the Culinary Institute and brought the day’s work (oh, my goodness, it is the BEST); some talk about what’s going on with the negotiations between the League and the stagehands, but no one seems too worried.

Came back to the apartment; ate dinner; changed for the reception, trying to give myself a reason not to go. But I did. I thought it would take me an hour to get there. It took 20 minutes on the subway.

I’ve never been to Housing Works before, to their bookstore and café, and I’ve certainly missed a lot. The reception was hosted by PEN, to welcome their new members. The drinks were good, the appetizers were wonderful. Both Francine Prose and A.M. Homes spoke. I’m struck again, with the people I’ve met via PEN, at the commitment to the art and craft of writing, the commitment to the community at large, and the commitment to social justice. Yes, everyone does the business-y aspects of marketing that have been shoveled off from publishers to authors – but the first priority is the writing. The community comes next, and everything else just has to take a number. It’s such a refreshing change from the majority of writing groups where the majority of the conversation is either bitching and moaning about agents and publishers, or obsession with branding. Maybe if more writers would concern themselves with the quality of their work before focusing all their time and energy on marketing work that’s not ready, more of them would get published in the way they wish.

I’m always energized and uplifted by attending PEN events. They are inspirational on so many levels, and they are proof that the written word still matters – no matter what corporate poobahs squeal about the numbers. The written word is still able to change people’s lives around the world. And that is something, as writers, we need to be aware of even more than the latest Amazon ranking.

I reconnected with some people I’d met at other events, and met some fascinating new people – one of them is a translator and the other is an agent. I’m going to interview the agent for the next Literary Athlete column – if she still wants to do it once she’s thought about it. Her take on both writing and the business are quite inspiring and I’d like to share it with my readers.

Got home early enough to do a good, long core workout. Watched some bad TV (I’m starting to wonder if there’s much else, now that THE CLOSER and BURN NOTICE are done until next summer). Read a bit, but the book I was reading didn’t capture me – I didn’t connect or care about the characters and they were kind of floating in nothingness. I think that was the author’s point, but I didn’t care enough to continue on the journey with them, and put the book up on BookMooch.

I want to do some research for the Good Names rewrite down around Grammercy Park. I guess I better get going on the articles, so I can “allow” myself to go – paid, contracted work first, after all. I’ll do word bar updates tomorrow.

I’ve also got some ideas swirling around – one of a novella for a contest with an early January deadline, and one for a book that could be a career changer and lucrative, but I’m not sure if I want to go in that direction. Especially in light of last night’s inspiration. So, I have to think.

It’s hard to think with trucks rumbling by so that the building shakes and construction noise. Time to put on the music and the headphones and get on those articles.

Good yoga workout this morning. Costume Imp’s cats still think I’m nuts, but at least they figured out that Corpse position doesn’t mean I’m actually a corpse.

Devon

Published in: on October 3, 2007 at 8:14 am  Comments (6)  

6 Comments

  1. It’s good to see you seeming so relaxed and at peace. Perhaps the noise will make you appreciate the quieter aspect of your own apartment when you get back, but I bet you’d rather be elsewhere anyway. I bet you enjoyed the PEN event because you weren’t actually feeling like going. From that aspect often it can only be better. If you come away recharged and raring to go then it’ll have been a brilliant trip. Enjoy.

  2. Aren’t you glad you went? It sounds like it was very good for you to go. I always like little surprises like that–I drag myself to something and go away re-energized and inspired. 🙂

    Corpse position? Does that actually stretch anything?

    😉

  3. Since I’m no longer involved in RWA and my local writing group, I don’t get that energy from being around other writers. I miss it. I hope to find another writing group soon.

  4. Good morning, sugar!

    I’ve tagged you. I’m sorry in advance. 😉
    http://writingfrump.wordpress.com/2007/10/03/tagging-the-frump/

  5. LOL

    My kitten attacks my head every time I do a sit up. GRR.

    :o)

  6. I like hearing about your friends cats reaction to you doing Yoga. Mine wander between my legs, chase my braid and try to steal my mat!
    It sounds as though the event you were dreading turned out to be quite lovely.

    I hope you have a productive day, and a nice one, too!


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