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January 2, 2017 The Writing Life: Publish or Perish

Lots going on here. And lots that I might write about, like today’s Grizzly Camp Loop ride. But I did resolve to write about my second New Year’s resolution. It is not as nuts and bolts as my first resolution, which was simply refrain from buying any more books and work to unload some of those that I have on hand.

This second resolution is far more nebulous. Plain and simple, I am determined to have this be a stellar publication year. I am not going to let work fall by the wayside because I think that it is sub-par. No, I am going to get stuff out there, as difficult and as time consuming as this inevitably will be.

It used to be (back in the days of wagon trains) that I’d write something, Xerox a copy, and put it in the mail with a cover letter and a self-addressed-stamped envelope. Now I am to send what I write to a potential publisher/editor via email. The problem with this newer submission process is that (I suspect) even the lowliest and least known print and online periodicals are now getting hundreds of submissions every single day, to which they are only responding to those they have accepted. Consequently, the sheer volume of submissions, plus the more anonymous nature of the internet, seems reason enough to them for failing to bother with the rest of us.

I have a handful of articles and proposals in the mail these past few weeks. I sent them to Home Power magazine, Writing on the Edge, and The Northern Horse Source magazine. I haven’t gotten any responses, and I doubt that I will. I also sent out a job application to Evergreen

When we’re not writing, we are all riding.

Kath and Ryder. Photo taken today, on the Grizzly Camp Loop.

College – I did hear back from them via email – the message simply said “the search is closed.”

I’ll keep sending stuff out to publications that in the past have published my work and publications that have not published my work. I will soon send out the article that I just wrote for the Centered Riding newsletter. I suspect that the editors will take it. I’ll also revise it and send in to CJ and Dave, who I hope will publish it in the Synergist Saddle Newsletter. I’m also going to renew my United States Icelandic Horse Association membership and see if I can’t get back on the editorial board. Then I’ll try and get some articles published in the Icelandic Horse Quarterly. I’m also going to go through my files and get past poems out there. My new mantra will be “marketing is good, marketing is great, I must get stuff out there, and empty my plate.”

I don’t think that I need to spend more time writing. I just need to be diligent about getting what I’ve written, out there. Speaking of diligence and also efficiency, Pete’s back at work on his book on common sense and chainsaws. He does not have tons of unpublished work lying about, as I do. Instead, after a lengthy hiatus, he’s resumed working on a single project.

And how do I feel about this? Amazingly, quite good. It might be different if he was working on a series of personal essays or a book of poetry. I’m interested in common sense and accidents, and maybe, just maybe about chainsaw use. But I don’t have the desire to write about this subject. This is Pete’s baby, not mine. I won’t be jealous if his baby and not mine grows up and becomes a sought-after entity. Admittedly, I might feel a slight twinge of remorse if Pete is called upon to give a commencement speech somewhere a few years down the road, because this is something that I’d like to do. For now, we’ll leave it at that.

I do not know if Pete’s New Year’s Eve resolution had anything to do with completing this project. He’s generally not one for making resolutions (that I know of) but if he did and this is it, more power (gggrrrr, grrr, rrrr, rrrr, wrhrr, whrr, whr) to him. What I do know is that he’s resumed working on this book and for sure, there is a specific audience out there for this book. And yes, this audience is going to purchase and read this book and tell their friends about it.

Next: 3. 12/3/17 Body Awareness: Making Connections

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