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Archive for June, 2012

A new blog for my rambling, random thoughts

June 27, 2012 Leave a comment

For those who are interested, I’ve created a new blog. Click here to see it.

As the subject line says, it’s a blog where I plan on posting exclusively about personal stuff in my life. This allows me to concentrate more on just writing when I post here, which is a win for my writing friends and a win for family and friends who have no interest in the travails of an aspiring novelist ๐Ÿ™‚

See you here (or there)

–dp

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On writing: Stephen King interview

June 24, 2012 Leave a comment

Awhile back, my oldest son sent me a link to a recent interview of Stephen King, because he knows that for many years he has been one of my favorite authors. Click on the following link to read the article for yourself: Stephen King interview

In particular, two quotes by King stood out to me, as they highlight the fundamental nature of someone like him, an author of so many books that it almost makes one’s head spin. A man who, despite “retiring” from writing, still releases one to two novels a year.

โ€œThey pay me absurd amounts of money,โ€ he observes, โ€œFor something that I would do for free.โ€

“King writes every day. If he doesn’t write he’s not happy. If he writes, the world is a good place. So he writes. It’s that simple. โ€œI sit down maybe at quarter past eight in the morning and I work until quarter to twelve and for that period of time, everything is real. And then it just clicks off. I think I probably write about 1200 to 1500 words. It’s six pages. I want to get six pages into hardcopy.โ€

I believe I have a passion for writing, but after reading these quotes, I asked myself, do I really have the kind of passion that someone like Stephen King possesses? The kind that drives you to write every day, the kind the sets writing goals and sticks to them, the kind that pushes you forward to completion even when you feel like doing anything but sitting at a keyboard?

While at times I would say I do, oftentimes I don’t. Why is that? I love to write, and I think I’m pretty good at crafting a good story or novel. So what is it that distracts from what I really want to do, that pulls my focus away from writing? At this point in my journey through both life and writing, I must admit that I’m not sure. I have a thought or two, but I’ll leave that for another day. For now, I just wanted to pass along a couple of tidbits on the writing life of an author who, whether you like him or not, clearly has that burning fire to create, and does so consistently.

Perhaps I should tape these quotes onto my monitor in big, bold letters, so that the next time I’m sitting at my keyboard and my mind begins to wander, or my fingers start leading me down the path of mindless surfing on the internet, they can remind me of what it takes to succeed. And by succeed, I don’t mean in a financial sense. To me, I define success in writing as: always increasing my knowledge of the craft, consistently writing every day, and ultimately, finishing all the stories in my head that just won’t go away. If, after that, a few people enjoy reading them, so much the better.

–dp

On family: the walk we must all take

June 12, 2012 3 comments

NOTE: I wrote this several days ago but am just now posting it. Life has been busy …

I’m sitting here in the bedroom of my parent’s house the night before the last day of my dad’s second round of chemo. I’ve only been here four days but I find myself weary. Watching someone succumb to the strains chemo places upon the human body isn’t easy; it’s worse when the person you’re watching fall apart is your father. You know, father’s aren’t supposed to get sick, let alone fall victim to a form of one of this world’s most dreaded diseases. But it’s happened, and reality has begun to sink in.

I was with my dad during the first few days of his first round of chemo. The way he handled them, and the accompanying radiation treatments, was nothing short of inspiring. Despite the deadly chemicals flowing through his system, and the radiation burning away at the two tumors in his lungs, he was upbeat and full of good humor. Even by the time I left, he was still showing no signs of the effects of the chemo or the radiation.

That was about a month ago. After going home for a few weeks, I’ve returned to my folks house and been sitting with my dad as he’s finished up his second round of chemo. While the humor remains, there are hints that the upbeat attitude is beginning to erode. He’s become weak and, for the most part, barely able to walk a straight path. I worry about him.

This recent experience reminded me of a music video from years ago that I really liked. At the time, I was the father taking care of his son(s). Today, time has passed, and now I am the son taking care of his father. Life has begun to come full circle. Yet despite the difficulties of helping my ailing father through the most critical time of his life, I find myself grateful for the opportunity to repay just a small portion of that which he sacrificed for me and our family.

–dp