Monday, 19 March 2018

Pearl Pirie : part two

What are you working on?

Short Answer: Carleigh Baker on Feb 27 (follow her on twitter @CarleighBaker) captured it:

Sean: How's the writing?
Me: Good!
Sean: How's the writing?
Me: Good!
Sean: How's the writing?
Me: Bullshit, it's all bullshit, REVISING EVERYTHING.

Long Answer: Ah the dreaded question. “What are you working on?” can be a jostling for status, a segue to humblebrags, an attempt to look professional. It might be a failure of any other common ground to make small talk. In rare hands (I can think of one case), it can be an ambush to take measure of a person.

Or, optimist shoved in front, it can be bonding shop talk with people who “get it”, the drive and struggle to be a maker in a genre that accumulates debt instead of income. It can be asking a real conversational question, formed because writing must be something that the person cares about, because no one writes poetry or attends events except by their own choice as a priority, taking an opportunity cost of what else they could do. It might even be an offering to let each other pick their brains about what to do with the newest ungainly creation that is taking shape.

I’m in a “fallow period”. I’ve been spending my energies trying to promote other writers since 2009, in one place or another, and to keep life balance. The desire to write is the lowest it’s been since I was 10 or 11 years old, when I was making my first chapbooks.

It’s a choice now, rather than artesian welling. Which is probably good nor bad, just a thing.

I am editing older poems, putting together a full-length collection of haiku and tanka — my first attempt to make a book of them. I’d put that ambition on the 10 year plan. Then did it a couple months later.  I figure do it to the best ability now, and again when given more time.

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