Thursday, May 22, 2014

big awesome thick clouds have been passing through for a couple of days, but no substantial rain yet, only a couple of drops yesterday. the kid at the market, who takes my groceries out to the van (they do this for all shoppers, believe it or not) says, in houston when they say 20% chance of rain, you get rain. here, when they say 60%, you don't. it has to be 120%, he says, or it won't rain. the couple drops i saw sizzled as they hit. most places had watering if they were going to get anything at all; if they had no watering, they were long dead anyway. the drops hit with a sizzle like drops of water on a hot frying pan.

i'd given up on kerrville, got four kids at home, sometimes fighting, a little crazy, didn't seem like we could handle it, but my wife said, go, it'll do you good. so i'm going, tomorrow. leaving here at about 4 30 and getting to kerrville about midnight. i'll play some music with my former band partner, who now has a new partner or two. good musical experience expected. short trip, but a lot of music. i get to see texas, that's a bonus, i cut across it, i can go several different kind of ways, i go, basically, from the brown part to the green part, from the flat part to the hilly part. will keep you posted.

i'm not writing a lot these days. that's 'cause i'm fiddling a lot. let the music speak for you; learn the songs, that's my motto. as a fiddler, i should know the tunes, know how they start, know what key it's in, know how to play it so someone can sing it, and then get it started. i fall way short in all of these. i listen for harmony and try to play harmony. one old guy told me, fiddle can't play when people are singing. i felt like saying, why not? fiddle can even argue with someone who's singing. guess that's what he found offensive, though. gotta play softer, maybe mumble when people are singing. when you mumble, people only hear you when they want to. all other times, they think you're crazy of course. but mumbling is always better than shouting. the old guy was right. if someone's talking, i shouldn't be rude.

played 'so long, it's been good to know ya' at a going-away party. i explained that woody guthrie wrote it, and he was kind of hard on the preachers, who, in this song, take everyone's money and then say 'so long.' i'm actually afraid to play the song around here because everyone takes their religion so seriously, they might not like those words, or they might take it that he's slamming west texas, with its dusty old dust, gettin' in my home, and they might not feel a sense of ownership for a song about leaving the area, giving up on its dust storms.

but the dusty old dust, IS a-gettin in my home, and i've got to be driftin' along, as he would say.

Monday, May 12, 2014

e pluribus haiku 2014

finished eph 2014 and began the process of pushing it through createspace and amazon. it should be available in a few days. it has 875 haiku; each state has at least a dozen; i was fairly aggressive about omitting repetitive ones and ones i didn't care for anymore. it's a constant process of renewing, updating, using new 'rules' about what constitutes 5-7-5 and how to show what 5-7-5 i intend the reader to hear. i had become impatient with the 2013 version and am now proud that that one is relegated to the historical backfile that will show the development but will ultimately pass into oblivion. each state now has at least a dozen; there is less imbalance and better representation. i am not sure it is completely up to my increasingly higher standards, but hey, there's always next year.

here is an overview of my upcoming projects. it is a quick window, where i am just out of school, while the children still have it for about three weeks. this is part of what i'd like to accomplish:

eph 2014 should be marketed, taken to lubbock public library and hastings, so that folks around town know that i have a good book of poetry going. i could read from it; i wouldn't be ashamed to sell it at readings. it is now complete enough, that i'm proud to distribute it.

unloading: the original copy was never made available to the public, really, except by emailing me and hoping i see my e-mail. increasingly, i don't. i'd like this one on createspace/amazon too, and am willing to add a few random stories to the series which need to be unloaded, so to speak. ideally it would have had several others, that have already been prematurely unloaded. i'm thinking of having a permanent "unloading" collection where i just publish stories that don't go in other collections.

to be estar, running title of a collection of esl essays about language and language acquisition. if i'm not going to finish the book on language as a self-organizing system, i can at least publish what i've written about it, so that it doesn't become permanent google-doc, where it seems nobody will ever read it. i'm enjoying the self-publishing racket, if for no other reason, i always have christmas presents to give away. they're getting around, too. people read them. i'm not sure that people can't put them down; they do put them down, but slowly, i become better, and what i write becomes slightly more professional.

just passing through which is an autobiography and collection of travel stories on this very blog (see template) and constantly needs to be added to, updated, pored over, etc. until i can't stand it anymore. my life is at the perfect point to publish it, but, that's always true, and besides, the minute i do, something else crazy will happen and i'll wish i could put it in. i think i need something to pound on the table, though. it's time to push this one through the system. i'm hoping, sometime 2014, i'll have something to show for it. i did enter it into the aarp/huffpost contest, not that that mattered. they are like ted talks; as far as i can tell, they never even noticed that i entered it. maybe people think that the siu e-mail is spam, and they routinely dump it. but in any case, if i want it published, i'm on my own.

interference, my novel, is stalled in the water, but it's almost done, and it's going up too. i'm pushing it through createspace/amazon, and pretty soon i'll have a book to pound you over the head with. i have to finish it though. stop messing around, get it off the table, and push it through the mill. it's on its way, i promise.

marketingi could be marketing this stuff. i know how to do it. i could be spending a few cents on google ads, or even making banners, and pointing my websites to my work. it's not beyond my capability. it'll happen, i hope. stay tuned!