Late. With only a moment's notice, attending the first meeting of a local writer's guild, that was the best word I could think of as my response to "What's your favorite word?" It was on my mind, that topic, because I was over half an hour tardy. I had so much time to dwell on my slinking into the meeting well after it had started and even developed its own rhythm, I thought about all the platitudes about lateness that I had ever heard. Like the one from my alma mater: to be early is to be on time, to be on time is to be late, and to be late is unacceptable. But I guess it just goes to show what nice people were there at the meeting. I was welcomed despite not having a name tag, nothing to write with or on, and with my Rambling Sickness enjoying a delightful flare up.
Despite Monday's rocky start to the week, however, this past weekend had a wonderful end to seven consecutive months of writing. At many points during the process, I chided myself for attempting something so ill-advised as writing three books at once. Yet it was rewarding, because even though it was a bad idea, I have the satisfaction now of seeing it through. Turning that weighty page has taken some doing, but now I can finally let the ideas of all those other stories wash over me. And at least until I start on something else, I can live in a dream world where I could commit the energy required to finish all of them. The screen play, the stage play, the poems, submitting to agents, getting other manuscripts ready for publishers, the fantasy novel, the sci-fi novel, the fantasy-sci-fi novel. Doing nothing does afford one the luxury of the fantasy that one could do anything, everything.
And on the topic of good feelings, on the topic of doing things in a tardy fashion, I would like to give a shout out to someone. I wouldn't have known that she read this blog had she not cornered me in regards to the specific date and time of my book signing in September. I was stunned for a moment, and my brain did the math on how she could have possibly known the information that only a precious few did. Then I cheated and peeked over her shoulder and saw that she, of all people, was reading my blog. But then, if not her, then who?
For some perspective, let me just say that my first story had more pages than I had years, and it was about a giant jellyfish. Don't know why, nor do I have any idea what level or brand of radiation caused such an abomination of the sea. "I'm so proud of you," is what she said. It would be an oft-repeated phrase, even after she stopped understanding what I was writing about, or even why I was writing. And I've thanked her for a lot over the years (let me tell it) but to my recollection not once did I ever just vocalize my thanks over her being supportive of my pursuing something that is, well, vastly exhaustive, time-consuming, and not accompanied by the guarantee of commensurate earnings. It is perhaps the best definition of a fool's errand that I'm aware of. Yet she always tried to smile, which is a might more commendable than actually being able to, in my book(s).
So, given the possibility that this works out, let me not be the guy who only smiles graciously, waves excitedly, and cheers boisterously after the confetti rains down and the trumpets blare. Let me simply own up to the fact that it's badly timed, and hope that its belatedness makes it no less genuine.