Month: March 2008 Page 1 of 2

Missing my little guy

Just before I took off for Texas on Friday night, I received this email from Andy and Riley:

Riley Says Hi

Texas has been nice — between the friends, family, and weather, it always is — but I am definitely looking forward to being with my boys again.

Common faults in short stories

Today I stumbled across this article about Common Faults in Short Stories. At times the author is certainly harsher than I think is necessary, but he has a lot of good tips. After reading his list, I couldn’t help wondering if I should rewrite “The Tenth Time” yet again…

I also took note of his advice on being funny:

I think humour only ever exists in something that sets out to be serious. Anything that sets out to be humorous is doomed.

Aha! Perhaps that’s my problem!

Win some, lose some, then get a puppy kiss

My morning writing sessions have been going pretty well this week. It’s certainly much easier to focus when Riley crawls into my lap and sleeps. Before, I had to keep him in the corner of my eye at all times, since I was never really sure whether his whimpers meant that he needed water, wanted to play, or was five seconds away from peeing on the carpet.

But then again, his adorable snuggly-ness compels me to hug and kiss and pet him a lot, which somewhat reduces my productivity. I guess you win some, you lose some.

Speaking of which… A few months ago, I sent one of my stories to Junot Diaz, the fiction editor at the Boston Review whose first novel The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao has been quite the success both with critics and the public. He responded personally, which is wonderful and rare, and one of his comments was that my story was “strong but young.” (See the win-some-lose-some connection there?)

Uh oh spaghetti-oh

American GodsThe Pilgrimage link is not working right now (and I was only on page 15!) so I’m reading Neil Gaiman’s American Gods online/free instead. Feel free to join me!

Edit: The Pilgrimage is back up! Yay! Now I have 2 free books to read. :)

Keeping it real

The Pilgrimage: A Contemporary Quest for Ancient WisdomPaulo Coelho has released another of his books online for free: The Pilgrimage. This is a limited time offer, but I still think it’s fantastic and everyone should take advantage. I certainly am! (A free book? What more incentive do I need?) You could call Coelho a phase for me right now. You could also call it obsession. Both would be true.

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: I have a focus problem.

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