WorkBlog: Imperfectionism

We’ve been out of town. I brought a notebook to scribble in and that happened, some scribbling. You’re not supposed to fall out of practice as a writer. Consistency is your ally and friend, but it has honestly been a struggle to sit still and do the work.

The reasons vary. Sometimes the idea accumulates the heft of the BIG IDEA. You know the one. It’s going to change the world. Surely you’ve had one or two that have gotten so beefy with intention that they never get completed. I’m a couple of thousand words into one like that. I am currently stuck because I need to express a style of architecture with extreme precision because I’m describing a real place. See I want you to know it’s the place I’m saying it is, I just don’t want to use the real name of the place.

I guess it’s perfectionism. No. That’s incorrect. It’s actually imperfectionism. You see I read where I was at and I couldn’t find the heart of the scene I was in. The scene is actually all a jumble and repetitive but there’s a cornel of something there that I need to extract but it’s under all that detritus you see and having to work through all that imperfection FUCK the sight of the words on the screen just exhausted me and I can’t help but wonder what have I done.

Goddammit I’m ridiculous. How can I possibly be getting an Master’s in Creative Writing when I can’t even sit down to write? Why do I keep doing this to myself? It has been years YEARS. Why?

Because I have no Plan B. Once I believed I was good at this. Maybe tomorrow I’ll believe that again.

This has been August 13, 2014.

 

Reboot

Time to make my ugly little corner of the Internet do its job again. This space has been barren of  research, random thoughts, and fiction for too long. Let us begin with climate and this from Ezra Klein at Vox.com.

 This is the awful math of climate change now: the question isn’t whether we’ll fail. It’s how badly we’ll fail. It increasingly looks like success is holding warming to 3°C rather than 4°C or worse. That is to say, we are redefining success as a milder strain of failure.

Blog Hop

My friend, Lilliam Rivera, asked me to participate in a blog hop.  The object of the hop is to talk about my writing, so here it goes.

What is the working title of your book/story/whatever?

My book has no working title.  It was called “The Tectonics of Clouds,” “The Terra-ists,” and “Ecomancer Blues,” but they were all shot down by the editors who have read it.

Where did the idea come from for the book?

The idea for the book came from my many angsts about my years in Los Angeles and my worries about the near future in terms of climate change, war, and new disruptive technologies.  At the moment I live in the near future.
What genre does your book fall under?

It would definitely be categorized as some sort of science fiction.
Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?

Hah-hah. Affleck, The Rock, and we’ll find something for Emma Thompson because she’s one of my favorite humans on earth.
What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?

Oh, we are nowhere near that yet.
What is the longer synopsis of your book?

We are even farther away from that.
Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?

I will shop it around the formal routes before I self-publish.
How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?

I am still entrenched in the first draft. So forever.
Who or What inspired you to write this book?

My wife. You may think that’s hokey, but, I was done with writing, I met her, and now I’m in fancy writing programs. Life’s a lot easier with a muse.
What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest?

It’s about addiction, Hollywood, reality television, terra forming, assassinations, and screenwriting. I would read it, and I’m very discerning.

According to the rules of the hop I have invited other writers to post their answers to these questions on their blogs.  I’ll update this post to let you know who is participating.

History and The Hall of Fame

No eligible player received the requisite 75% of the vote from the members of the Baseball Writer’s Association necessary for induction into Cooperstown.  It’s not the first time this has happened, but it is the first time that two universally acknowledged, all-time greats were so snubbed.  Sadly, Roger Clemens and Barry Bonds are the faces of the Steroid Era.  The writers have made a statement with this vote, but this is a messy issue with many culpable parties.

This is from my article from New York Sports World:

“But, my purely unscientific observations are that PED’s make good players like Sosa, McGwire, and Rafael Palmeiro great, and propel great players like Bonds and Roger Clemens to the precipice of history.  Yes, they cheated and that is a character issue, and the writers are asked to consider character while making their Hall of Fame selections.

But, silence is also a character issue.  Players like Mike Piazza and Jeff Bagwell are being indicted by whispers while column after column appears from voting members of the Baseball Writer’s Association detailing their personal struggles in voting for this scandalous ballot.  They want to be of service to history and to the players they perceive as clean before and during The Steroid Era.  But, according to Tom Verducci’s book, The Yankees Years, Rangers pitcher Rick Helling brought up concerns about steroid use at union meetings as early as 1999.  And, when slugger Frank Thomas was contacted by George Mitchell’s commission, he was happy to cooperate.

If an elite player like Thomas knew about PED use on the teams he played on, is it out of the realm of possibility to believe that Derek Jeter, Chipper Jones, Ken Griffey, Jr., and the many other great players we identify as clean also knew?  Isn’t it the job of a team captain to police his clubhouse?  It would have taken great character and courage for a group of untainted All-Stars to band together and go public about a problem they thought was ruining their sport, but no one had the guts to do so.  In that sense, no one is clean.”

Read the full article here…

Let Me Tell You A Story

This is from my latest article for New York Sports World.  It’s one of my favorites, and I can see a consistent improvement in my work for the site.  Enjoy.

“I’m not feeling any juice from the New York sports scene right now. Maybe that’s my bad, but our football teams didn’t make the playoffs, our mediocre basketball team is a little less than that, our good basketball team has hit a bad stretch, and Spring Training is a little more than a month away.  And, to be completely honest, I just don’t feel like complaining about our current cast of assorted disappointments today.

Instead, I want to tell you a story.

On the corner of 46th and Broadway there once stood a sports themed restaurant. A giant, protruding “A” stood above its entrance, and people flocked there, hoping for a glimpse of one of its celebrity owners.  It was a marvelously ugly place with booths shaped like baseball mitts and a red, yellow, green, and blue color scape that can be politely described as garish.

If memory serves, the carpet was a kaleidoscopic display of footballs, hockey sticks, tennis rackets, and baseball bats surrounding a white “A” on a black background.  Each square of carpet alternated with the color scape, so you could make a game of stepping on only the green squares, the red squares, or the blue squares. On slow nights, you could just step on the yellow squares and pretend that Michael Jackson’s “Billy Jean” was playing. You know…because yellow squares are like lights? And when Michael steps the squares light up?

Ahem.”

Read the rest…

Free Fiction for hard times