Leaning Against A Shovel

I feel fine. Resuscitating my blog has given me literary notions to live indolently.

God, the last post I wrote was way back in August. Tempus fugit. But I’ve been busy, right. Busy with master stuff. Like brainy stuff. Stuff with brains in it, like headcheese.

I’m now the happy owner of an MFA in creative writing from Stonecoast. Honors and privileges have come my way like a stray dog, and like a stray dog, honors and privileges have sniffed me, raised their legs, and trotted off.

At my very last residency as a graduate student, I met with an agent. She wasn’t interested in my novel. As she romanced the other two writers, I drifted away like Pluto, no longer a planet, just some large chunk of ice.

My ears did perk up, though, when she went on a about Twitter, how authors need it like a chamber pot under the writing chair. But I just don’t know if I’m ready to Twitter yet. I mean, why would I Twitter and have 2 or 3 followers, if that? How sad is that. I’d rather go for a walk and bump into a couple of strangers and ask them if they prefer a culture of perpetual complaint or one of unlimited imagination.

I like what Mr. Wilde has to say about Twittering: “The public have an insatiable curiosity to know everything, except what is worth knowing.”

You wait, though, when that day comes when I eventually have a book deal and a pound of stolen chocolate, I’ll be asked if I would care for a cup of Twitter and I will go giddy in the knees and say, yes, bring on the 140 dancing characters.

The thing about these tiresome social platforms is that we are being intoxicated by them while not getting truly drunk. All we have to do is look back, oh, I don’t know, 10 years, and how on earth were writers reaching readers then? Who was picking up books then? Did nobody fucking read 10, 20, a hundred years ago? Why have we thrown the baby out with the bathwater and don’t believe that before these social platforms people did read, read lots, found writers out (I know I did), because look at all the authors out there, surely they didn’t come fully formed through social media, right? I’m sick of hearing that all these social platforms are the new sliced bread.

Write the books and they will come. But the thing is, publishers, agents, even writers don’t have patience now. Every book must sell right off the press. What ever happened to building a readership over time, nurturing a writer, writing and living and even having another job? It’s all get to the shagging now, no time for seduction and courtship and romance.

Yes, I know, I’m an old crone in young man’s boots. But just because something is “new” it’s not entirely satisfying. Being satisfied shouldn’t be equated with 50 Shades of Gray.

“It is absurd to divide people into good and bad. People are either charming or tedious.” Wilde

Like everyone else and their colonist ancestors, I’m enjoying Downton Abbey, the new class struggle. But, my interest was waning. There was just too many subplots to keep straight and not enough family secrets in the pantry. And then what do I get? Lady Sybil dies! There were so many buckets of tears at my manor, I had to haul them downstairs. Why did they have to do that? Couldn’t they have at least had Edith try to lure Sir Anthony Strallan to a wheat field and a combine harvester cuts him down or couldn’t the Countess of Grantham be found in Ethel Parks’ bed?


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