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Inspirational Reads


May 3, 2010

I am currently sitting at my desk, listening to a deer (or multiple deer, I'm unsure) yelling at one another. Did you know deer can yell? If you didn't, let me be the first to tell you, deer can yell. It's a sort of screechy, sneezy sound, but it's a yell nonetheless.

I learned this a couple of years ago when I was sitting in my backyard, reading a book quietly, when I heard something walking through the underbrush on the other side of the stream. It was a mother deer and her fawn. Neither of them noticed me until the wind changed direction. When I heard them, I looked up slowly, and saw them. Finally, they noticed me and the mother did her best to warn me off. However, since I wasn't a threat and it was my house, I stayed, observing how she would act. There was a lot of stamping of her front feet, as if to intimidate me. That didn't work. The sneezing scream did, though, mostly because it was so different and so odd and so otherworldly, but I remained. She would stamp and then make that sneeze sound, and I watched her for about fifteen minutes. The fawn remained frozen, watching me. Finally, I stood, and both she and the fawn bounded off into the woods. It was all very interesting, as I was in the middle of writing a book in which a couple of deer were the main characters.

Speaking of that book...

Did you see that? It was almost a segue!

So, I've been in kind of a dark place for a couple of weeks. Mirthless and somewhat listless, I've been going through the motions and, well, honestly--aside from a particularly enjoyable piece I wrote about swishing your mouth out with piss--I haven't really written much of anything that I would call "good".

Granted, most of the time "good" is debatable, but still, I think you understand what I'm saying.

I think--more or less--that I've snapped out of my funk. At least, I'm riding on a higher wave than I was before. Thanks to everyone who told me to "buck up, little soldier" and then offered me their backside for grabbing--er, I mean, hugging, yeah, hugging. *shifty-eyed*

Anyway, I'm sorry for being in a kind of emotional trough. I think a lot of shit hit me all at the same time, and it just kind of buried me. The book thing was just kind of the icing on the cake.

A lot of you, in the comments section of the caveat scriptor post, asked questions, and since I'm too fucking lazy temporally-economically-minded to go back and answer those questions, I thought I'd address them here. So, here goes.

I plan on keeping up the submission effort with the book. I kind of backed off when money got tight last year, but now that (for a while, at least) I'm in more steady financial waters, I'll be going back to submission. I'm going to back to trying to find an agent. I did get close, once, but then the guy who was interested in my work quit the fine art of literary agenting and hasn't resurfaced; believe me, I've stalked him relentlessly, all to no avail. I'm going to stick to agents because, frankly, I don't trust e-publishers now. And, the story is good, too good to leave moldering in the bins of my electronic data storage units (whatever the fuck they would be called). The other two stories are too good, too, to leave unpublished (I think I just managed to use every form of the word "to" that can be used in the English language...minus the Norse god Tyw--hey, look!), and so I will eventually get around to cleaning those up and sending them out once I'm a touch more established within the publishing world.

Perhaps I'm too arrogant, but I don't want to go the self-published route. I've read the pros and the cons of the self-publishing field, and though I don't think it's a scam (if you find the right company), I just don't think it's for me. That is all.

And, as for the question of do I worry that Strategic Book Publishing has a complete copy of my manuscript in their hands...yes, I'm worried, but at the same time, if they're too lazy to actually publish the books they've been PAID to publish, then I probably shouldn't worry that they'd go about swiping my story. Besides, according to a couple of legitimate publisher's websites that I've read, my work is copyrighted and protected from being stolen by a publisher who has received it. Perhaps naively, I'll trust that the law is on my side.

Also, my Greek going on vacation. I've actually stopped writing it. Instead, I've been doing a lot of study and research on other mythologies. Blame Neil Gaiman if you must, but I came up with a new, fabulous idea and I'm going to be working on that. Because she likes the idea I've cooked up almost more than I like it, my wife is kind of playing the role of editor/publisher and is going to be demanding a chapter from me a week. We'll see how this works out. This is either going to end with a fantastic manuscript by the end of the summer, or a lot of make-up sex. Either way, it's win-win for me.

Plus, it helps fill up Thursdays here on ye olde blogge.

So, anyway, that's the updates from me: yay, I'm not so dour; boo, I'm not writing the book I was halfway finished with; and I'm starting a new one that I hope to have done sometime over the summer *listless shrug*.

Now, if you'll excuse me, I have to get back to Cheers.


BigSis said...

I totally know how those funks can be. It amazes me that so much can happen to one person all at the same time.

I hope the nice weather that Spring promises will help cheer you and inspire you to endeavors that bring you happiness.

A completed book would be cool too! My son and his 4th grade friends are totally into Roman and Greek mythology now that they've read the Percy Jackson books. Just sayin' :)

Elliott said...

"...I've been going to this high school for seven years. I'm no dummy..."

I've never encountered deer in that manner, only had them bound through the yard at top speed. Skunks, on the other hand...

Eric said...

So that was the sound the deer made when my father hit it with the family sedan when I was seven.

kate said...

I am still traumatized by the sounds made by possums...those are some scary, nasty little bastards. One used to come wandering up onto our front porch in college whenever someone was outside. It would stare at you with its beady little serial killer eyes and scream like a banshee. *shudder* So gross.

Man, that Jon guy is so emo. I never noticed before.

SkylersDad said...

You haven't had the piss scared out of you until you have heard (and seen) a mountain lion scream.

holy. fucking. shit.

Tracie said...

I've never heard deer yelling. I'll take your word for it though as I don't go out in the woods or fields.

Good luck with the new book!

Scope said...

Deer yelling? No.
Dear yelling? Not yet.
Doves crying? Rock on!

And when your wife gets demanding for the next chapter, will she put on the "special outfit" with the knee high black boots with the 4 inch heals and the...

excuse me, there's a cold shower with my name on it.

Amber Tidd Murphy said...

thinking of you as you emerge from the dark night of the soul, the winter of your discontent... blah, etc.

I sound like a "get mentally well soon card."

carissa said...

I've never heard of a deer making a sound.. Weird little shetered life I've lived, I suppose. But anyway, I'm glad to hear your in better spirits, and I can't wait to hear about the progress of your new book. I will love anything that your blaming Neil Gaiman on!

That Baldy Fella said...

Good luck with the fresh attempt at creativity. I've got a large number of half-started things that I'm not really dedicating any time to hence none of them are really progressing so you have my sympathies...