When I retired, I was all fired up with plans for the future. I was going to learn Spanish, even though I had demonstrated a total lack of linguistic ability when I was in college. I wanted to learn to play the guitar and ended up with perhaps the worst teacher in the world. He started me out trying to play Lighting Hopkins “Boom, Boom, Boom,” when what I really wanted to do was learn how to strum a few melodies while drinking a beer on the back porch.
I did accomplish writing three books, two of them, Blossoms of Sin and The Amargosa Blues were finished quite quickly. Again, having no background in writing, I didn’t know what I should be doing. I hired a professional editor, and on the advice of my publisher, also not the best choice, ordered two hundred copies of that first book, then set out to make myself an author. I have about 175 of the books still in the garage.
My mistake was that there are two types of editors: grammar and content. No one told me this, and the editor I hired was a grammar editor. It wasn’t until I sent a copy of Blossoms to a friend who was also an editor and who did both grammar and content, that I discovered the difference. In the parlance of the time, my friend “tore me a new one.” I got back a critique of my work almost as long at the book itself.
I took the critique to heart and have been working on the corrections in a slap-dash manner since then. Sometimes I get inspired to work, other times the book sits moldering, as if something can molder on a computer
I have played around with writing by trying to maintain a blog and generally not succeeding. I have two partial books written, although they may never see the light of day. I also write travelogues under the title of Dinosaur Logs, but that’s about it.
Tonight, I am sitting here with a glass of wine playing with my brain and trying to fire up that enthusiasm I had so many years ago. This is a time when I have started to work on Blossoms again with the vague hope that I can correct the book enough to have my editor give it a passing grade. If that happens, I would like to re-issue it under a different title. Since I had no background, I took the first title someone suggested to me when I finished Blossoms; it was a line from Hamlet and it seemed to fit the theme.
Maybe I will succeed this time,but only time will tell.