Wednesday, January 19, 2011

...I have a new story, "Scarecrow" up at The Red Asylum and also here under "Words in Print."

...It's so sunny at the moment that glare is skidding off the lake surface in scalding white sheets and my eyes are bloodshot but it feels so good to see sun that I'm going to just let myself go blind until the clouds arrive, whenever that may be.

...Sometimes the truth is uncomfortable. Sometimes it can be the very last thing you want to hear. I read an agent's blog where she said that, for a writer trying to get a book published, it's no different than an actor going to Hollywood and landing a role in a movie or sitcom. I'm not giving up, though. I realized I need to go to more writer's conferences because that's your best shot at physically interacting with agents and editors. Thus, yesterday I clicked on over to Amazon and ordered the 2011 Writer's Market for a pricey sum. Hopefully it will arive before 2011 is over.

...I am nuts for William Gay. That's Mr. Gay's photo. I was a little surprised when I saw this photograph, along with the other images of him. He resembles his writing, yet I did not expect him to. I pictured the Marlboro man in buckskin and chaps, or else someone like Corma McCarthy with a square jaw that looks like uppercuts would just bounce right off it.
Just so you know that I'm not exaggerating how gifted Mr. Gay is, I'm leaving you with these goodies (excerpts from his collection, "I Hate To See That Evening Sun Go Down.")

-"You need to know what a man's capable of. You need to know what things cost."
-"You know how we always thought he (Dylan) had a handle on things? How he knew where the answers were in the back of the book? He doesn't. He's just wandering around this sideshow like everybody else. Trying to make it through to daylight the best way he can."
-"For the first time in his life he realized that sometimes you go through doors that only open one way. You can stand before them and think about whether you want to go through them or not. But when you do and the door closes behind you there is no way to go back. The door is featureless and unknobbed and smooth as a sheet of glass. You can pound on it and claw till your fingers are bleeding, scream until your throat is raw, but no one will open the door, no one will hear you."
-"Maybe we are all the authors of our own doom, she thought."
-"Something about her affected him the way medicine might. Maybe comfort was just another kind of medicine."
-"She didn't say anything. The wine was strawberry, and she could smell summer in it, hot green leaves, berries warm in the sun. She was thinking how little time it took to alter things forever. To arrive at a place you can't get back from."
-"Her pale heart-shaped face held only the promise of beauty and its customary vulnerability. It said what it always said: Well, here it is. Help me or hurt me, it's all the same to me."
-"What he wanted done was something to eliminate the inequity of people's lives. A balancing out of things."
-"There was an air of ruin about her, sweet corruption."
"He felt like counting out more money, as if it was all he had, a down payment on a life someone was going to repossess anyway."
--William Gay


  1. Not to be too old school but you do not need to go to a writer's conference to get an agent. You need to write a good book and a good query letter and do your homework and query the right agents. A lot of people try to apply mysticism to the process but it is literally about the writing, nothing more. Most agents that go to conferences are being paid to do so and they'll be friendly and schmooze but they will likely not take your writing seriously. From what I know, it doesn't give you a leg up at all. YMMV but just thought I would mention it.

  2. yeah, roxane, i get that and that's what i've been doing. it's just a lonely experience. getting a faceless agent rejection is a lot more devestating than getting a story or poem rejected. i'll keep querying and i'm onto the next novel now. thanks for posting.