Oh to be able to just write and not worry about getting pieces placed, or paid for! Querying, submissions and pitching is the absolute pits. Any of you reading who write professionally know the pain. Trying to get pieces placed, securing interviews for journalistic pieces, is grueling. Getting longer projects published and pitching them is a combination of ego shredding rejection, and utter elation. To be a freelance querying pitching writer requires nerves of steel, and a willingness to throw yourself upon the tides of self exposure and publicity. It is not a comfortable state of being, especially for those of us who write memoirs.
Writing poetry and memoir is like stripping your soul naked and letting people take a good look at it. Which is all well and good, but it is also important, like any good whore, to be able to also put it aside, back in its box, and go and watch a show about hyper-realistic cake baking. I can’t even eat cake, I just like yelling at the television that that is definitely a handbag or a sneaker and not cake. Then they cut it, and my mind is blown, and distracted…and diffused.
Like Joni sometimes I write and read, and play the occasional song for my friends. Most of the time it seems to amuse them. Sometimes I do it for money. I haven’t played songs for anyone other than friends for many years. I half considered going to an open mic night tonight up in Ocean Beach. I have an acoustic electric guitar which I can plug into a PA, and a whole bunch of original songs. I could easily put together a three song set. So why didn’t I? Mainly out of sheer terror and sobriety.
I am going to try and find some poetry reading events in the Bay soon. Life is dribbling its way back to normal, and I enjoy reading my poetry. I have my submission goals, and the novel is winding its way onwards. This morning I bit the bullet and started writing my memoirs.
Life’s noise distracts and deters. The sheer vast wall of impossibility sometimes slaps me in the face, but what can a writer do except keep writing.
To all you out there who are writing and querying right now, putting your soul on the line and passing it around for judgement and approval, I see you! You are my peers, my cohort, my competitors and my brothers and sisters in arms. Do not let the bastards get you down. Keep on fighting the good fight, and one day we will win. They can fight us in the major publications. They can destroy us in the poetry competitions. They can give us the success we crave, or destroy our best hopes and indulge our worse fears. You are all heroes and heroines to me. I know what it takes, and it is brutal and harsh out there. I’ve got your back. To the readers…if you are also not writers, please know how appreciated you are, and how hard we all work to try and entertain and provoke. Readers are the most important people in the world to those who write, and us writers spend long portions of our lives wondering how to best serve you and distract or enlighten, or make you think or feel or not…as the case may be.
I would like to thank my new Patreon Supporters, who are helping give me the space and encouragement necessary not to give up. I truly appreciate the support and vote of confidence. Thank you. All of you. It means so much to me.
If you would like to check my Patreon out and help give me the time to be able to get my work published and establish myself as a writer you can find it at: