1:18 a.m. x 2011-07-31
currently listening to: "jack sparrow" by the lonely island
seth is on vacation. i was supposed to go, but since my contract got extended, i'm in training again and can't miss a week.
i woke up around three and watched the end of "six feet under" and cried torrentially. it was beyond the passive tears incited by a sad moment on TV. that finale exorcised several months' worth of stress and anxiety. seth got inside scientology for his birthday, but since he took the books i bought him on vacation, i took that to read while he was gone. i'm editing my novella for another round of submissions. i have two short stories in circulation that i think are genuinely my best so far (and two others that are radical departures). or, hyperbole notwithstanding, i can see myself maturing. it isn't torturous to write short works anymore. stories come now naturally in that format.
i've been thinking about success. my standards for success. what it means to me to be successful at writing. i have a friend, a classmate from college, who is raking herself over the coals for her inability to get an agent. everyone i went to school with wants to get in the rarified, exclusive print journals and publish with major houses. it's pervasive.
meanwhile, my ideals:
i want to publish with writers i like, in journals i read because i want to see them going and i want the respect of those i respect, whose writing i genuinely believe in and, if i ran the writing would, would make its luminaries. one of my absolute jaw-droppingly favorite-ever writers who happens to be a contemporary author friended me on facebook the other day and i went berserk. WHAT!? THAT'S WHAT I WANT TO HAPPEN.
i also want to respect and explore the New Ways. the Old Ways are failing. and i love small operations. i love small presses. i want them to thrive. i want it to be cool because i agree, it's cool, not because i'm told, not because of pervasiveness and monopoly. i love vision and commitment and pioneering. i don't care about what's time-honored. i don't. i care about who is doing the thing that will save art.
and i do not care about rejections. what there is to be done is a thousand times more important than the petty obstacles. i have gotten busted up over ONE rejection and that was because i knew it wasn't even read and i knew the editor and i felt like i was wasting my time with that press even though i didn't want to feel that way. that's the kind of rejection that i find upsetting. otherwise, i'm an editor, i know there's only so much room and one has his/her preferences. that's the least rational thing to get up in arms about. sylvia plath was told she did not use the events and prose in the bell jar in an effectively novelistic way and was flatly denied publication by the US press that had been forthcoming about working with her. when the new yorker extended her a first-exposure deal that came with a bonus and implied massive favoritism, they still turned down a load of her stuff. the ariel poems were despised by everyone in her lifetime.
writers! so touchy! i'm really heading where i want to go. i'm so happy.
if anybody should ask i'm going to a seminar
pieces of the moon
sensitive heart, you're doomed from the start