Mid-Year Musings

The June solstice has come and gone, officially marking the start of summer, and I can’t help but be amazed at how the time has flown. I am mid-way through 2011 and while the previous months have generally been good ones, there are times that I look back and ask myself, “Has it all just been a dream?”

I started 2011 with big plans in mind. Some of those worked out better than I could have imagined and others didn’t even take off the ground. And then there were those that morphed into fantastic moments of serendipity, making me feel so blessed to be alive. One of the defining moments of my year thus far was the second week in April when I met someone who professed an interest in publishing my book. Before this, I had never given any serious thought to seeing my work in print. Writing a book was always something I’d get around to doing eventually, like cleaning my room, or getting married. What do you do when opportunity comes calling? You answer, that’s what.

So over the next three weeks, I dug out all those half-finished stories mouldering in my hard-drive and penned a couple of new ones. Though things didn’t quite work out with the initial publisher, it gave me the chance to revise my options and look to publishers based overseas. And in doing so, I found a whole new way to market my work. The latter half of May was spent sending out a flurry of emails to publishers (mostly independent) world-wide. Some responded, some didn’t. Que sera sera.

So between waiting to hear back from a couple of publishers regarding whether or not they’d be interested in printing my work, I’ve taken an active role in writing. Some writers think the hardest part is starting. For others like me, the hardest part is actually finishing. The most magnificent words can flow into your mind, teasing and tantalizing you with infinite possibilities through which the story can unfold and then….somewhere after 3000 words, inspiration dies. And the story is forgotten, consigned to an early grave. All that sparkling potential….gone. Kaput. Finito.

My goals, as far as my writing is concerned, are simple. For the rest of the year, I endeavor to:

  • Write for pleasure if not for profit, even if it’s just a flash-fiction piece of 1000 words
  • Research things out of my comfort zone. A romance set in Ethiopia perhaps, or a supernatural thriller that takes place in the foothills of Tibet. A Sci-Fi piece based in the Uzbekistan wilderness? I’m up for it.
  • Have at least 25 pieces of prose written by year’s end. 12 down, 13 more to go. Woohoo!
  • Write at least one piece of zombie fiction.
  • Submit my work to at least 5 anthologies and 5 print/ online magazines.
I suppose one of the main reasons that none of my previous resolutions have worked out is because I never felt a sense of connectedness to them. Can there be value without passion? No. And that is probably my greatest lesson of 2011 so far.
Here’s hoping that the remaining months of 2011 will be inspiring, magical, and above all, meaningful.

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