Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Farther? Along

I've been lately thinking/about my life time/all the things I've done/and how it's been....

Standing/On the rim/of the world/Holding back/Lest I fall in./Seems like/I've been here/A hundred years/Telling myself/Tomorrow I'll begin.

I'm a contemplative critter anyway; so with it being a new year, I'm pondering who I am and where I come from; where I see myself going, and whether it's where I'm supposed to be heading. Specifically, I'm thinking about my writing. Eleven years ago and change, I stood atop Tenderfoot Mountain, looking out over the town, and I vowed that should the Powers That Be allow me to move here, I'd more fully commit myself to my writing. After nearly a decade of living here, how much farther along am I?

This past year, I submitted thirteen times—a baker's dozen, read sixty-three short stories, four novels, and three non-fiction titles. I haven't bothered to do the arithmetic, but I'm confident I spent less than a hundred hours writing last year.

Yet there's a part of the story that these numbers can never tell. The latest issue of Colorado Central Magazine arrived in mailboxes, four days ago. I've already received two compliments on my essay there. Last February, I was invited to join other local writers and poets in helping the local independent bookstore celebrate their move across the street to larger, snazzier digs. I've even had writers ask me to do reviews of their forthcoming books. So, never mind what the numbers and my self-deprecation say, folks who know about such things regard me as a talented, seek-outable writer.

In her recent blogpost, Sam Heggan comes clean about still not knowing what she wants to be when she grows up. This is what I'm talking about when I talk about "where I'm supposed to be heading." I've touched on at least a couple aspects of this in previous blogposts. To be engaged in the Big Conversation and to be taken seriously as a writer (especially by myself). Another desire is to be an asset to the writing community, as a source of inspiration and assistance. In a video for Talking Gourds, Rachel Kellum, tells how she's been taken in by poets such as Art Goodtimes and Rosemerry Wahtola Trommer. Likewise, another video has Rosemerry introducing David Mason, saying what a wellspring of wisdom he'd been for her, and in his introduction, Mason thanks Rosemerry for her assistance.

It's striking me, now, how I've been talking about the results of writing, rather than the act itself. Perhaps something to think, er..., to write about.

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