Woe is me for being sooooo far behind in communicating. It’s all been bottled up inside. Writer's block is a situation akin to constipation--except, sometimes great works don’t emanate in the end. Just shit.
However, these are the things weighing on my mind….
Two short stories have been accepted, by Big Pulp and Bewildering Stories, and await publication in 2009, and an article on the first shots fired in the Civil War will be reprinted in the Camp Chase Gazette. I also await publication of my article on Holling Clancy Holling in the American Book Collectors of Children’s Literature newsletter; I especially want to send a copy to the dear lady in Michigan who helped in my research… Several other stories need rewrite as I face the devil who sneers at my inability to express myself in the ways I want… My research into Bacon’s Rebellion looked complete until I discovered Thomas Wertenbaker’s Virginia Under the Stuarts written in 1913; this added an entirely new dimension to the rebellion.
Other quotidian chores included holiday shopping and entertaining. I’m in the spirit of Christmas early and lovin’ it. The family letter is written and about 70 cards are in the mail. The presents are all bought and there are a few bottles of wine to split with family and friends.
An additional task has been of my own making. I’ve begun leading a new writing group of a dozen area people. We’re gathering at the Ocean County (N.J.) Library twice monthly for a chance to critique, compare notes and share in a love of writing and reading.
This has been a very good year. The usual blessings—knock-on-wood good health, low stress, excellent wife and family—make it so much better in the face of the tribulations so many people are facing. But the writing has also gone well, with 10 short stories and articles published during the year. Most happily, there are the small joys, like my granddaughter exchanging thoughts on the literate life from her vantage point of a 15-year-old using an iPhone. There is hope for the future.