Friday, September 5, 2008

On The Last Writing Class:

Well we had our last writing class last night. (Congratulations to one of the class who won first prize in a poetry contest this past week.) We didn’t get a lot done. We did work on things but there were goodies to eat and things we wanted to say to each other before the group split up. Some of the group didn’t make it to the last class and I was sad to think I might not see them again because we did have a good group of people as a whole.

I have a new story that I am going to try to get published. Not that the one I was polishing isn’t good enough. It’s good for what it is. The trouble is it’s size. Yes, surprise, size does count. I have discovered that even a great story has trouble finding a home if it doesn’t fit the parameters of a certain publications criteria. And I had never really thought about how many words were in an article in a magazine that I was reading before. I was just looking for the information or entertainment.

So now my new story is making it’s way down the road to perfection. Spelling errors and grammar are being fixed. Sentences are being rewritten for clarity and dressed up with a new word or two for color.

On the me side of things. I have never felt so at home with a job before. This writing as work feels right. No, I haven’t gotten a pay check. I’m talking about taking it seriously. In the years before it was a ‘when the muse hit’ I’d sit and write kind of thing. Now it is a sit at the computer and write for a predetermined time like punching into a time clock kind of job. But this is the first job where I couldn’t wait to get to work. And I’ve been doing this regular writing thing since before I started to blog.

No don’t start emailing with all those ‘just wait until you find yourself staring at a blank screen’ comments. I’ve done that and still love it. It doesn’t hurt that over the years I have found that my writing style lends itself to bouncing around. I don’t just stare at the screen. I bounce on over to another subject and write for a while then come back and get to business. I have whole books written as a side line to my major writings. They are not any good and will never see the light of day. But as a tool they are invaluable to me. I worked out stuff there, learned stuff there and birthed new styles there. And going back and reading them is a laugh a minute. Talk about bad.

But to sum it up, I’m ready to do the work involved to become a published author. That is the biggest lesson I’ve learned from this class and for me that is saying a lot because it means I’ve moved from the dreaming phase to chasing down the reality.

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