Wow, yesterday was just a really, really great day.
It was the best day I’ve had in a really long time.
It was one of those revelatory days. I won’t go into too much detail about it, but several writers were unexpectedly emailing me with feedback about my newest works and it actually kind of blew me away.
One man wrote in response to that new flash-memoir piece I wrote last Friday — he’s not the potential publisher; he’s a much younger Iranian writer, although I think he’s living somewhere in Europe now. He asked if he could read the piece, so I sent it to him a couple days ago, never dreaming it would affect him as much as it seems to have.
Since he is the sole person to have seen that piece so far, it took me by surprise that he liked it as much as he did. And, of course, it made me feel great. Because almost no one responds directly to me about my writing anymore. They just don’t.
And then, my friend in Brussels (a photo- journalist) sent me an email with feedback about my upcoming novel, The Guitar Hero Goes Home.
He is the first person to give me any meaningful feedback whatsoever on the entire novel (other people have given me feedback on specific chapters) — and the manuscript has been circulating for over a year already.
Plus, I only sent it to him a few days ago, and I honestly never dreamed he’d read it so quickly. or have such meaningful feedback for me. There’s one small part about the main guy’s heart attack that I see now I need to clarify. Plus, this friend is also the guy who told me he hated my original title, which I did end up changing, so he doesn’t mince words.
Anyway, he said really kind things about the novel. It’s experimental fiction, which can be dicey, but he ultimately seems to have really liked it. Words such as: compelling, intense, challenging, elusive.
I love those words!
Also, yesterday, one of the webinars I took re: Abstract Absurdity Productions, was about developing a film festival strategy (which festivals to submit films to — if any — and why).
I have had really good experiences with the 4 different film festivals I’ve submitted to in the past, two of them were Tier 2 festivals, one was a Tier 1. I won’t go into all the details, I just want to say that from what I learned yesterday, I became sort of aware that my writing is really good.
The guy giving the webinar is the programmer for a Tier 2 festival that I’ve entered twice over the years, and both times scored just 2 points shy of being a finalist, but that is still a really good score, and they make a big deal about it. It’s still an honor. But what I didn’t know is that that particular festival gets thousands of submissions, 80% of which are no good, right off the bat. So only 20% even get into the judges’ hands
I was quite astounded by that number. And I sort of saw my own projects from a different angle.
The Tier 1 festival I entered was one sponsored by the Academy Awards (the Oscars) and I scored in the top 8% out of 7000 entries that year. I knew that was good, even back then. I wasn’t aiming to win — I was aiming to make connections and see what the feedback was. So I knew the score was good, but from this new distance of time, I see that my work consistently shows up. And in smaller places, it actually even wins the awards.
So, it was just a good day. I was getting a new perspective on my work. Coming to a new understanding about it, since I get so little outside feedback anymore.
And then, of course, Peitor and I did actual “Ab Ab Pro” work on the phone for a few hours and got a lot accomplished. We have narrowed it down to the 3 micro-micro shorts we want to write the scripts for next — with an eye toward shooting them as soon as feasibly possible in these days of COVID. (We have literally 20 micro-micro-shorts in development. And 3 other projects that are from 4-10 minutes in length that we kind of consider our “gems,” including Lita måste gå!)
We do have just so much work to do but it really is moving forward and I feel really happy about that, too.
I’m at that place in my life now where, as long as I can get to the close of a day and feel really good about the day and want to come back and experience my life again tomorrow — that’s what matters now. So I am always so grateful when I do have just a really affirming day.
Okay. Today is all about beginning the re-edits of The Muse Revisited Collection, in anticipation of publishing POD trade paper editions of all three volumes in the collection.
And then Valerie in Brooklyn is supposed to call later to discuss where we are on all this cover art I still need! (Primarily for The Guitar Hero Goes Home so that I can actually finally publish it.)
Nick Cave sent out yet another Red Hand File early this morning — still relating to his really amusing one from the other day, where he tried to score a free piano from Fazioli in Italy. Now it seems that some fans have started up crowdfunding campaigns to buy Nick that really expensive piano. (Not so far from what I thought was a ridiculous comment to make — that we were taking up a collection to buy him one for Christmas. Apparently not so ridiculous a comment after all.)
Anyway, he has asked his fans to not do that. That he can buy his own piano.
Sort of weird, right? That fans took this really delightful post of his and turned it into this thing.
All righty. Well, I’m going to get started on the editing here. I hope you have a really nice Wednesday, wherever you are in the world, gang!! Thanks for visiting. I’m going to leave you with my listening-music from last night. I’ve posted it here before, but it is really just lovely — probably the most popular contemporary ukulele recording out there, even though Israel Kamakawiwo’ole has been dead for a number of years already.
I had this on repeat for I don’t know how long last night — in bed, lights out, sun setting — and it took me to some amazingly rapturous places. His voice was so beautiful. This is his medley of “Somewhere Over the Rainbow/What A Wonderful World.” Listen. Enjoy. Find peace, baby!! I love you guys. See ya.