Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Today, I Whine

This winter is kicking my ass.

Although the furnace is working, and it is a theoretically comfortable seventy degrees in my office, the outside weather presses in on me. I am wearing a fleece hoodie, a wool stocking cap, fingerless yak wool gloves made in Nepal, and Sorel boots. I am still cold.

I am thinking about the movie "Dr. Zhivago."

I saw the film only once, when I was fourteen years old, but there is one scene that stands out in my memory.* Dr. Zhivago is a poet, and he is in desperately love with a woman named Lara. He is alone in an abandoned house in the Ural Mountains. This place has no heat, and it is dead winter. The walls are covered with ice, inside and out. Zhivago is hunched over a tiny desk writing poems. He is wearing fingerless gloves and a fur hat, and his only sources of heat are a flickering candle, his love for Lara, his passion for the beauty and power of the written word, and his moustache. He is writing the love poems for Lara, which will become his enduring legacy after his tragic death.

This, I thought at age fourteen, is what it is all about: the artist alone with his medium, pouring his heart into his work, without regard for circumstance, discomfort, or practicality.

Well I’m here now to tell you, it ain’t like that. I’m freaking cold, and I feel about as creative as an ice cube. So the only writing I’ll be doing today is this blog post. Then I’m going to take a long, excruciatingly hot bath. Then I’m going to curl up under a blanket with my dog and read a book about someplace warm.

So there.

* My memories are likely flawed. I thought about watching the film again, but I didn’t think I could stand the ice and snow. Or the over-the-top melodrama.

Monday, February 10, 2014

Writing for the Long Haul

I've been buried in a rewrite for the past couple months, so even less blogging than usual, but I did find time to write a short piece for Janni Lee Simner's blog. She has been running a series called "Writing for the Long Haul." It's an interesting idea, and she's getting some nice contributions from long-time writers.

My piece is a variation on something I posted here last fall, but I deleted the Pointer Sisters and added some other stuff, and it's better. Check it out here.

In other news, have you seen the Klaatu Terminus book trailer yet? It's on the new Klaatu Diskos website, and on YouTube.

I'm now working on two Top Secret Projects. They didn't used to be secret—I've talked about them a lot, on my blog and in other public forums, but I've decided that they are now Secret to, you know, create a sense of mystery and eager anticipation. Do you feel it? Are you intrigued and excited?

Yeah, me too!