Beginnings, as exciting as they are, are also very challenging. I am on my way but the road signs warn of speed traps and runaway children. My speedometer’s broken and I failed the DMV’s eye exam; how the fuck am I going to succeed?
By driving anyway. It’s more productive than sleeping in my car at a rest stop.
It helps the drive to have supportive people around me. I would personally and publicly like to thank my mentor, Mark Ari, for advising me about my current freelance endeavors. My presence has slowly faded from r/writing, but I am getting back into the r/wordcount community. They’re a less incendiary and and an overall more supportive and helpful bunch and, thus, deserve a shout-out. My first paycheck gave me the financial power to become a member of JaxHax, a local makerspace that’s in the works. JaxHax and its members inspire me to remain creative and provide me with a comfortable and collaborative space away from home where I can accomplish large scale projects.
Also (of course), my IRL friends deserve a special thanks. Their lovingly relentless nags (“You should publish this!”) have led me to look back at an older piece… it’s a creative nonfiction essay that doubles as a segmented prose poem, titled “Three Hours Alone on Black Rock Beach”. I wrote it over eight months ago and I revised it HARD…harder than I’d ever revised before. During that process, feedback from Ari and my friend Chris Hicks helped my writing break down barriers of my own making and cross into uncharted emotional territory. Needless to say, I am deeply grateful to them both.
But, as it is with most things we put our soul into, I may have grown a bit too emotionally attached to this piece. When I read it (or hell, even think of it), it takes me back to a time in my life I will never forget, a time when my psyche was as sensitive as a newborn’s rapidly expanding skin cells. I submitted it to a literary journal for general consideration through TellItSlant last April, and there it has been for eight months, an unpublished Word document, as powerless as the rest. *insert dramatic sigh here, fade into triumphant-sounding instrumentals*
Tonight, I withdrew my submission, re-read and re-revised it for about the 15th time, and submitted it to the same journal’s 2012 Creative Nonfiction Essay Contest. It cost me additional monies in submission dollars, but it guaranteed me an answer by June. If you’re also a creative nonfiction writer and are interested in the contest, here and here are some additional links you might find helpful.
For now, I will press the patience button and continue my freelance editing work as well as my monthly creative projects/Artys. If summer comes and the wind whispers to me “failure”, I will just keep driving this road regardless because eventually, it will lead somewhere. Some blessed place where I belong.