The following items made me happy today:
1. Knowing that J gets back from a weeklong business trip tomorrow night.
2. A full night’s sleep last night, after a week of waking abruptly at the hours of 3, 4 or 5. See point 1 above for suspected cause.
3. Vacuumed floors. Always worth it.
4. A video call with my cousin’s two-year-old son, which involved toting my laptop around my house to find the kitty cats, who he knows by name.
5. Hearing from my cousin afterwards that he now knows me by name too.
6. Working on a story for my new exciting revision-focused fiction workshop. I woke up thinking I would try to tackle it and make myself love the story which had been giving me some trouble, until I realized around noon that I could love it…if it was an entirely different story. While this sounds like it might be trouble, nothing is better than getting excited about a story.
7. Commencing work on an entirely different story, that so far I’m loving.
Speaking of things that scare the bejeezus of me, last night I gathered all my courage and threw a vulnerable story out into the world. Well, at four specific journals, though I’m considering a handful more. We’ll see how it fares. One of my goals for this year (ahem, resolutions) was to revise and submit a story for publication. It just so happens that many literary magazines close their reading period at the end of May, and so… here I am. What I didn’t expect to do was send this particular story out. I was planning on sending one to a contest that ends in May. But as I was readying it to go, I looked at all the other magazines that were still open until 5/31, and said, to hell with it. It’s no skin off my back to upload it to a few submission sites, write a tiny cover letter and wait for the rejection slips. I am going about it in either the smart way or the stupid way, depending on your point of view – starting at the top and working my way down. In fact, I cannot even tell you the journal names because they are so LAUGHABLY up there. Don’t guess. You’ll make me feel stupid. It is a humbling thing, to delve into research about this world, because once you realize how slim your chances are, you imagine all the other hopeful people, and then you multiply that by the number of magazines out there, and suddenly wow a lot of people want to be writers. And I’m throwing myself in there with them.
I started first with a what-the-hell kind of journal, the kind that routinely publishes authors I guarantee you have heard of, pressed send, and then when I moved on to the second one I happened to scroll down my document and noticed two words that I accidentally left a strike line through. Oops. Blast. So I’m holding my breath for a note on my rejection letter. Seriously. This is apparently a good and rare thing, to have someone take the time to scrawl something on the rejection. Sometimes I think writers hate themselves even more than architects hate themselves.
Anyway, there is… tremendous relief to have even done it. Thinking about doing it some more. Oh dear.
Yesterday I went to a Kishi Bashi show by myself. I have a deadly fear of being at a party where everyone knows everyone else, and I know no one. I become clingy at said parties if I do find someone I know, and it is very unattractive and I leave these parties feeling awful. So usually I avoid these situations like the plague. This is a strange thing, because I quite adore being alone. I just prefer to be alone by choice, and not by contrast.
But! I really wanted to see this show. I found out about it two days ago after listening to his new album 151a nonstop over the weekend, and the serendipity of him actually coming through town while I was obsessed with the album was just too good to pass up. Also it was at a venue that is literally on my bus line home, as in: there is a bus stop right in front of the place. Obviously I took comfort in the fact that most of the time alone would be focused on the music, not spent standing alone with a beer surrounded by laughing, chatting people. But I am going to let myself have the win anyway.
It was really worth it. He’s super charming and talented as a performer, a one-man band who manages to build up a sound that seems like it should be coming from an orchestra and five computers. I was smiling the whole time. And I don’t generally like the whole sampling/electronic music thing, being more of a former-Broadway-geek-turned-sad-guitar-heavy-indie-folk kind of girl. But it’s hard to deny when someone is very very good at what he does and moreover, has fun doing it. Really enjoyable, really happy show, and I highly recommend you go see him if he comes your way. It’ll be fun, I promise.
I’m counting this as a small act of personal bravery. I think I need to do more of these things that scare the bejeezus out of me.
This will be the third post in the last four in which I merely leave you with a youtube video, but I think this one is okay to include because it made me cry. Twice. There can be so much joy in a small moment I can hardly stand it.
It is with a disturbing amount of glee that I report here: the robins are back.
We missed the nesting last year. As it turns out, I’m all about bird architecture.
It’s been a month and a half since I was last here. Drat. Sorry about the recent once-a-month post pace. What can I say, except that I am a busy girl? The past month has been particularly hard, with stretches of 17-hour work days and general frustration at work. I am not above complaining here, obviously, but when that’s the only content I can think of writing it just doesn’t feel worthwhile. You don’t really want to read that anymore than I want to write that.
So now we’ve passed a major deadline at work and I’m beginning to fill my mornings and evenings with the rest of my life again. J and I are actually having a long weekend together, Monday being a state holiday, and I couldn’t be more excited for the mini-break.
Just wanted to say hi. Thanks for checking in, even though this is nothing but one lame excuse after another. Maybe I can make it up to you by leaving you with this completely awesome video?