I’m home on a Saturday night because of a curfew and I realize it has been a while since I have posted here about my writing. About three years ago, I declared “creative bankruptcy”, abandoned most of my active projects, and took a new approach: one project at a time. It went well. Since then I’ve been able to write more often, read my work in public more often, and get published more often. Some of my new “one-at-a-time” projects have been meta-projects, like tools for keeping track of submissions, and repositories of writings, for example. Other projects have been more creative, collaborative with , and more likely to be completed, when there’s only one at a time. The plans were good. The work was organized. The results are in. Entropy showed up anyway.
In truth, it isn’t always possible to have that “one-at-a-time” luxury. For me, that’s because some things take longer to finish than others. Opportunities arise in the meantime, and after seizing a few of those, things begin to pile up.
For several months, I had been working on a collection of works called “Litanies and Reiterations.” They’re fun pieces to write, because they’re made out of found phrases, playfully arranged into long lines and lists. They’re fun pieces to perform, and audiences seem to enjoy them. Over the course of those months, I’ve managed to publish some of the works, but as a chapbook collection, I can’t seem to get them published. They’re too unusual, perhaps, or maybe there aren’t enough of them, so the collection has remained an unfinished project for a while now. I’ve begun to move on from the project.
During my work with “Litanies and Reiterations” I began another idea, possibly a better one. I started another collection. The lines are similarly playful, but more structured. The subjects and themes are more clearly connected to each other, which I think will make for a more enjoyable experience for a collection. This new collection is called “Portraits and Landscapes” but it, too, has remained unfinished for too long. Although I’m excited by the idea, I don’t want to work on it forever. It’s time to get it done.
I’ve decided to self-publish “Litanies and Reiterations” since I’m sure it would be unpublishable otherwise. The design is done, the proofs and revisions have been made, and now I’m waiting for the book to show up on the Internet for purchase. It will be available in print and electronically.
As for “Portraits and Landscapes,” I think I’m going to call it done as well. I’ve made an artist book out of the text, with a friend of mine. I’m going to make a limited edition of the book, as a sort of “artist proof” or early version, to share among close friends. The chapbook may still be publishable by traditional means, but if it isn’t, I’ve already got a book ready to release to a broader audience.
What’s next? It’s hard to say. Things have been tumultuous lately, but I think that by the middle of this spring I should have a blank slate, ready for whatever happens next.