Thursday, December 8, 2011

A Little Mental Roundup

Thursday, December 08, 2011—Orange, CA

Feeling pretty good today. The semester is coming to an end and I’m finally getting to catch my breath a little bit, finally finding the time to integrate other activities into my life. I have a bunch of work I need to do over the break, but I’ll also be recharging my batteries, which is something I desperately need to do.

For the last several weeks I’ve been feeling a bit out of it at times, kind of lost. I’ve begun to realize that this is because for months now I haven’t been writing (except of course here). When I stop writing like this I begin to lose my center and to a lesser extent my identity; I begin thinking of myself more of an anthropologist, which sucks, because in terms of my employment situation in this field at least, I’m a pretty low-end social scientist. Last night I reread the tiny bit of work I’ve done on the third Backwaters book and really liked what I read; I could most definitely see its potential. More importantly, reading those few pages really reminded me who I was and what I should be doing. Somehow I’m going to design my life next semester so that I can write regularly, on the Greece book for sure and perhaps Backwaters three as well. Social science is only part of what I do—a relatively small part. When I understand this and can place it in the proper context in my life I’m happier, and also a better teacher and writer—everything fits together and makes sense, in other words.

I’ve also realized (once again) that it’s time for me to break out as a writer, for me to find a substantial audience; I can just feel it in my bones that something’s about to happen for/with me, that something’s needs to happen. I’ve done all the prep, put in all the hard work. I have the books and my books have something to say—they matter in this world. As usual, though, I’m not sure how to proceed, how to go from where I am to where I need to be and should be. The first step, I know, is to throw myself back out there. I need to get the Kindle version of Heaping Stones out and then put out a small run of Edgewater, my long-delayed poetry book. Then once I have some fresh work out it will be time to launch Backwaters of Beauty (either thru an outside publisher of myself). This will all begin happening soon, within a matter of weeks. Then, slowly perhaps, everything will begin to change. Like I just said, I know I have written stuff that matters—once I launch it it’s only a matter of time before it finds it audience and its route to that audience. Exciting times. Or at least they’re about to be.

As has been the case for months, there’s not too much going on in my day-to-day life. Hopefully I’ll be heading up to Santa Cruz for a quick trip over break. Steve S. is coming down from Sacramento in January, and it will be really nice to see him. For now, though, it’s just getting thru the semester and then Christmas prep. Still working on my Greek (though not quite as much as I’d like—busyness and evening exhaustion have caused me to slack off a bit). Still reading a bit as well. Looking forward to more human contact in the coming weeks. I’ve become far too much of a loner these last several months—I’ve surpassed even my extreme need for solitude, which is saying quite a bit.

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