Publication Anxiety

Tonight, when faced with the option to stay in or go to a Steelers bar with a group of friends to watch the pre-season game, I opted to stay home. I wasn’t feeling the bar scene, and I’m not a Steelers (or Giants) fan. Ultimately, after sitting in my room for an hour, I decided to take myself on a date to Barnes & Noble.

If you’ve ever read Truman Capote’s iconic novella, Breakfast at Tiffany’s (or if you’ve seen the toned down, Mancini-infused film adaptation), you know that when Holly Golightly has a case of “the mean reds” (translation: unlike having the blues, it’s when you’re feeling down but you don’t really know why), she heads to Tiffany’s to window shop. She doesn’t believe anything bad could ever happen to you there. I had a case of the mean reds tonight, and Barnes & Noble is my Tiffany’s.

When I got there, I browsed around the new fiction and nonfiction. I looked at the best sellers and the summer suggestions. I picked up and put back down a number of classics. My normal BN method is to roam up and down the fiction aisles for an extended period of time before moving on to other areas of the store. That didn’t work out for me tonight. After checking out the tables of books (does anyone else feel compelled to touch them sometimes? I could never use a Nook or a Kindle because I just love the feel of a book too much), I found myself looking at the magazine racks. In particular, I was looking for literary journals. There were too many people, and the magnet in the reference section was especially strong tonight. A few minutes later, after a brief stop to see if there were any new books on the Kennedys that might interest me, I found myself standing in front of shelves of books about writing, how to generate ideas, how to write effectively, how to find work writing, etc. Towards the bottom, I saw the magnet. It was the Writer’s Market 2011 book. If it had hands, they would have been all sassy and akimbo. It would have been raising its eyebrows at me. “You’ll never do it,” it would say. “Remember?” Continue reading

Friendship is a Six-Lane Highway [*Free-written]

I know, I know. I need to stop with the thinking and get back to writing about writing – and I will. Next week. Promise. In the meantime, you can (and should) view this post as a writing exercise. It’s basically totally free-written, which means that it’s raw and I’m writing what I think as it comes out and not really editing much. It’s all a thought to get down.

Next, I want to preface this post by saying that I have a lot of really great friends and, as I’ve mentioned in previous posts, I’m proud of them and I kind of like to brag about them when they do awesome things (or even when they don’t). This drives people crazy (a lot of things I do drive people crazy), but if you are my friend and you’re good to me, I will be one of the most loyal friends you have, doing whatever I can to help you out.

My last post generated quite a bit of traffic and resulted in several conversations regarding Facebook friends – deleting them, blocking them, ignoring them. I started thinking about how much I absolutely hate to lose friends and how I work hard at keeping my friendships. If I grow apart from some people, particularly those I never see (it’s inevitable), I feel okay, as long as I still talk to them sometimes and still consider them a friend. I’m obviously not going to be really close to everyone, but even with those friends with whom I don’t hang out very often (“often” to me these days is 4-5 times a year or more), I try to at least keep in touch periodically. I send a text or leave a Facebook comment to say hello or something just to let them know I haven’t forgotten about them. Last night I was thinking about the old saying “Friendship is a two-way street,” and while I agree, I started thinking beyond that. I think friendship is a six-lane highway. Continue reading