As my friend and co-creator, I hope you'll comment on these fledgling poems. They hatch out daily on Twitter @everydaypoet and migrate here.

Sunday, July 15, 2007

The Things You Want to Do

The theme of the last two months has to be Jim Croce's comment, "...there never seems to be enough time/to do the things you want to do/once you find them."

I want to get my book to press. I want to give it its best chance. That means a lot of research and slow steps. For the "query letter" stage, I wrote and mailed out the letters, but not too many and without positive response. There are a lot of reasons that makes sense; first-time author, no ready-made "platform" through speaking, high percentage of poetry as content, etc. Once I got to the current "literary review" stage, the same hurdles apply. Not to mention that we are straddling states with residency and work. Do I set up a business here in Texas with checking account, mailing address, etc? Do I close down the one in Arkansas? In fact, hoping to resume living in Arkansas fulltime in a couple of years, do I try to develop a writing/publishing network there?

Anyway, for the last month, I feel like I'm trying to run through mud, slowing down with every step.

Besides the book, I am keeping up with daily poems and contending with techwriting at my regular job. Pressures there (on the whole curriculum team) to work more quickly and incorporate more special projects are making the work more difficult. For one thing, I have to wait till other people complete their portions before I can do my part. Sometimes, because they take longer, the more complicated texts come to me the latest, which can also mean I have the least time to proofread and fact-check them.

Lately, I've seen that fact-checking and editing content can be irritating to the instructional designers. Everyone has their own pet ways of writing, designing, and organizing. To try to harmonize all these varieties of things and end up with a text that is correct, understandable, and aesthetic is quite a challenge. The quality of the work, in my opinion, is declining, and for reasons beyond what I've just described. I put most of it down to bureaucracy.

What it all means is that I need to think through what my role is and/or should be. I also need to look to the needs of my soul and make sure it is nutured. There have been too many episodes of lost-sleep nights, knotted stomach and clenched hands, weepiness and frustration. And what for? Answer: to learn not to be that way!

1 comment:

Kate said...

Jo - You have no FOLLOW button on the blog so we can access it easily. Help!