Sending Out Good Writerly Vibes Into the Universe

Last month I submitted two pieces to two different contests. One was a 500 word story for a 500 word story contest. I revised a flash fiction piece I’d written during NaNo called “Haunted House”. It was originally over 1,000 words and kind of garbage. I cut it in half and I think that made a better story out of it.

The other piece was a poem that I submitted to Writer’s Digest’s Annual Story Competition. I’ve submitted all sorts of pieces to this contest over the years and I’ve place twice: 10th for genre short story and 5th for script. I’m really looking to reclaim my glory of placing second in a state poetry contest back when I was a sophomore in high school.

I wanted to submit an essay for this contest (it has a variety of categories), but it just didn’t work out for me. That’s something I need more practice on.

I was also going to submit a non-genre short story to another short story contest, but I changed my mind at the last minute. I think the story is fine, but I just have no confidence in my non-genre stories. I’m not a literary writer by any means and my few journeys into that territory have been less than stellar. That story -while not bad in my opinion- will never see the light of day.

To be honest, I don’t have the highest of hopes for either of my entries. I like them both and I think they’re good, but I’m not sure that they’re good enough, you know? But winning wasn’t the main point of me submitting to those contests anyway (thought it would be super swell if I did, don’t get me wrong).

I did it to cultivate good writerly vibes and to send those vibes out into the Universe.

I know how stupid that sounds. But as someone who’s been struggling to write consistently, let alone anything of quality, submitting something -anything- to anywhere is an act of defiance against the issues I’ve had. It’s an offering to the writer gods to show them that I’m still serious about this business, even though I haven’t been as enthusiastic or productive as I’ve been in the past.

It’s about putting those good vibes that I cultivate when I’m working on a piece and I hit that sweet spot groove that I yearn for out into the world and hope that I’m repaid in kind.

It’s an act of faith, in a way. That if I can submit something I’ve written to a contest today, then I can submit something else to an anthology or a magazine tomorrow. It’s a reminder to myself and to the Universe that I’m still game for this even on the days that I doubt myself the most.

It’s just another part of the craft that requires practice. Putting myself and my work out there, valuing my work enough to put it out there, requires repeated attempts until I get it right. Because eventually, I’ll be rewarded.

In the meantime, it’ll be worth the contest entry fees.

I Struggle with the Object Permanence of Myself

“I saw this and thought of you.”

This combination of words presented in this form never fails to fill me with terror.

There are two reasons for this. The first is triggered by my anxiety. I frequently see things that remind me of the humans inhabiting my little world, but I don’t tell them that or purchase the things that I see to give to said thought of person because my anxiety tells me, quite insistently, that these people do not want that. They do not want to know that I think of them. They’d rather I not think of them at all, thank you.

To have someone tell me “I saw this and thought of you” reminds me that my brain does not work in that same, unencumbered way. I immediately feel guilty because I have thought of them and never mentioned it. Or, I haven’t thought of them recently. I’m sorry! I’ve been thinking of others. But I swear I’ve thought of you before! Really! I do think of you! I just don’t say anything!

And that’s my hang-up, not theirs. I try to be better, but there’s only so much I can do while living wildly unmedicated.

Which brings me to the second reason I find myself paralyzed with fear when someone said, “I saw this and thought of you.”

Why are you thinking of me?

I am baffled by the concept of my own object permanence. The idea that I exist to other people when I’m not in their direct line of sight. Or sometimes, even then. Once when I was a junior in high school, I was accused of skipping study hall. The teacher didn’t call roll, only looked at her seating chart. That day she decided that my seat was empty despite the fact that I was indeed very much so there and though I was smaller in high school than I am now, I was rocking pre-breast reduction H-cups. I was hard to miss, and yet. Luckily, another much more popular student vouched for me, even though I’m pretty sure he only did so as a way to insult another guy in the classroom (thanks anyway, Jeff), but I still had to go down to the office and prove my existence.

Being overlooked became so common place that invisibility has become my superpower. I don’t expect to be seen. It’s always startling when I am.

So, imagine my surprise when someone thinks of me when I’m not even there.

Talk about stupefied.

My first impulse is always to ask them why. I don’t because that would be rude, but I want to.

Since I’m frequently unseen, it stands to reason that I would also be out of sight, out of mind. I just figure that I cease to exist once I’m out of the eye line. Obviously I know that I continue to exist. I’m not that kind of off-kilter (anymore). But there’s a sort of block in my thinking that allows me to accept that other people know that I continue to exist when I’m not in their presence. It doesn’t occur to me that I’d ever occur to anyone else.

I just cannot picture someone whom I haven’t seen in a few years, walking down an aisle in a store or browsing online and seeing something and thinking, “Hey! This reminds me of Christin!” And yet it has in fact happened. More than once even.

As someone as self-absorbed as I am, and as someone as so into my own head as I am, so much so that I sometimes have difficulty seeing beyond myself (probably another reason I don’t think of other people the way I’m supposed to), I am more than real to me, yet I still fancy myself some kind of ghost. I am the phantom that you only catch a fleeting glimpse of before I disappear, and you decide I was only a trick of the light and forget about me forever. Or at least until the next time you catch sight of me. I think of myself as the reality of a baby’s peek-a-boo game. Like a baby, I don’t understand that I don’t disappear when you can’t see me. I still exist outside of myself.

But the peek-a-boo pros know how the game works. I’m a person that they know, someone that they don’t always see, but who occupies a space in their world even if it’s not physical.

And sometimes they reach out to remind me that I’m still real.

Writer’s Procrastination

It’s a well-known gag: a writer will clean their whole house to put off writing. And like any good joke, there’s a nugget of truth in there. It’s the getting started that can be the hardest part.

Some writers say it’s the intimidation of staring at the blank screen. That blinking cursor taunting them, daring them to type the first word.

For me, I think it’s my fear of commitment.

Once I start writing something, I can’t stop. I can’t quit until I’m finished. And I don’t mean that I have to write the whole thing in one go. I mean that I don’t quit on a piece until I get to the end, no matter how much I don’t like it or don’t want to write it. Even if I know that I’m not going to do anything with it. I have to finish it.

This has a tendency to make me hesitant to start. Do I want to commit to this idea? Is it good enough to carry me all the way? Or is this thing going to die halfway through and I’m going to have drag its corpse across the finish line? All valid questions, sure, but they make me put off starting, sometimes until it’s too late. The idea goes stale or the deadline passes and I never get a word down.

This fear of commitment has been complicated by my recent struggles with my writing. I already flail when it comes to starting a piece; the lack of productivity is just kissing a papercut with salt chapstick.

I’ve even been having trouble with my blog posts. Getting started or in some cases, finishing them. I’ll get off to a strong start and for whatever reason I have to finish it later, which will be my undoing. Starting where I left off should be easy, but instead I find myself procrastinating. I can’t bring myself to start writing even though I technically already started.

It’s a strange, frustrating thing.

Especially when I know that all I have to do is start. If I just get that first sentence out, the magic will happen. I know that. But the harder I try, the more I resist. It’s almost like a panic response. I sit down to get started on a piece and I turn into a Muppet flailing in the forest. Or a middle age woman playing endless games of solitaire and constantly checking Twitter until I give up.

I’ve only been revising things lately, which has helped with my productivity, but that reprieve won’t last. And as much as I like doing NaNo, I’d like to be able to write productively outside of the month of November.

There are several ideas that I’d like to be working on right now. Ideas that have been sitting in the fore of my brain for a couple of months. They are right there, ready to go.

I just have to get started.

Nesting in a Happy Place

I am one of those people that will comfort watch things. You know what I mean. You’re feeling a little down or blue or stressed or whatever, so you throw on your favorite TV show or movie. Something to soothe you and boost your mood.

My go-to’s are flicks like Halloween or The Fog or Delicatessen or House on Haunted Hill. You know. Real cheery stuff. Or I’ll binge-watch cartoons like The Real Ghostbusters or Danger Mouse or He-Man. Because my inner child has a tendency to be more of an outer child.

However, there are times when I need more than just a little mood booster. There are times when my sole source of serotonin comes from repetitive viewings of whatever my brain has decided to fixate on because it brought me an incredible amount of joy in a specific moment.

For example, the world is currently shit due to the fact that if you leave humans to do the right thing, they will absolutely not do that, thank you, anything but that. How have I been dealing with this fuckery for the past couple of weeks? By watching episodes of Ghosts (the US version). For 20-ish minutes, I get to tune everything else out and giggle and awww at the inhabitants of Woodstone Manor. Does it fix things? No. Does it take pressure off of my brain? Yeah, for a bit. And it gives me something to look forward to.

Several years ago I watched Ghostbusters: Answer the Call every day for six weeks. Every. Single. Day. Sometimes twice a day. It became a necessary part of my routine to help ease the brain decay I was experiencing at the time.

I mentioned Delicatessen as one of my go-to’s, right? Well, there was one point in time when I watched it daily for weeks. Drove my roommate nuts. She’s not a fan of French black comedies featuring post-apocalypse cannibalism, I guess.

I’ve done the same thing with The Fog, the Anatoly episodes of Arrow; Zelenka episodes of Stargate: Atlantis (yes, I’m fond of David Nykl, but he’s not the only actor I’ve done this with); episodes of both the 1980 and 2018 Magnum PI; and My Dinner with Andre.

I’ve been known to do the same thing with songs and albums and musicians. I create my happy place and then I move in. I stay there as long as I need to and then I move out again. Sometimes it’s a few days; sometimes it’s months. Depends on why I’m in the nest I’ve made.

And then one day I’m done. Just like that. No tapering off, no thought. One day, I just leave that nest and I’m done with that happy place. It might be a long time before I revisit the shows or movies or music of that particular experience, or I might go back to watching them or listening to them like I did before I needed them to survive.

It’s probably not the best of coping mechanisms, but I cannot deny that the serotonin boost manages to keep me sane when I need it most. A life raft in stormy seas until I get to the next piece of solid ground.

Now if you’ll excuse me, it’s time to return to my happy place.

Let’s Talk About Stress, Baby

In my little world, I categorize my stress into two categories: To Do List Stress and Life Stress. Sometimes they overlap, but they tend to affect me differently.

I prefer no stress, but if I had to pick one of these, I’ll pick the To Do List Stress.

To Do List Stress is the consequence of me overestimating my ability to be productive and scheduling myself to do a whole lot of things in a certain period of time. To Do List Stress is most prevalent in December, but I can honestly do this to myself at any time. I tend to cope with this stress better. Not because I can choose to reschedule the things on my To Do List to be more accommodating (because even if I say I’m going to do that, I never do), but for whatever reason, it’s just something I can handle. Maybe it’s because I’m a Capricorn. Who knows.

One contributing factor to my ability to deal with To Do List Stress is that it triggers my “DO IT ALL NOW” anxiety and out of all of my anxiety manifestations, I can actually deal with that one pretty easily. It mostly involves me reminding myself that I don’t have to do it all now and I have it all scheduled out. Do I have to remind myself of this multiple times a day, if not an hour, and does it sometimes disrupt my sleep? Yes. But it’s mild compared to what Life Stress does to me.

Life Stress is everything else in my world.

It’s working short-handed most days of the week. It’s working a customer service job during a pandemic. It’s the constant barrage of bad news. It’s going grocery shopping at any point in time. It’s the ever present strain that never seems to abate.

I’m not great at dealing with that kind of stress, at least not anymore. I think I was better at dealing with it when I was younger and more resilient. Or I was too dumb to stop and realize what I was dealing with. Whatever the reason, after the Massively Stressful Summer of ’18, my ability to cope with Life Stress is basically non-existent. It totally drains me.

Which is not good.

It’s not ideal to go through life feeling like you’re unable to catch your breath.

I think -and this is just speculation- that I might be able to cope with Life Stress better if it didn’t absolutely wreck me anxiety-wise. While To Do List Stress triggers one particular anxiety manifestation, Life Stress triggers several and they’re all the worst.

The general dread that comes with social situations, like going to work for example, goes from barely registering/normal to now dialed up to 11 because every shift guarantees an unpleasant interaction with someone.

And every unpleasant interaction leads to rumination that I can’t stop, whether I acknowledge it or not. Because most days, I just chalk it up to the normal of now and don’t consciously think about it. But that doesn’t mean it’s not pinballing through my brain, off in the background, coming to the fore when I finally sleep and the guard goes down.

Stress dreams are not fun. And I’m having them a lot more often than I ever did.

This sort of thing has made my baseline anxiety worse. I question every single human interaction I have outside of the people in my house, and still question those interactions on occasion. I cannot wish someone happy birthday without questioning my word choice. You think I’m joking, but I’m not. I can have a chat with someone I’ve known most of my life, who knows me and my quirks and my dumbassery, and still walk away from that conversation ruminating over every single thing I said and did during that interaction.

This is the toll that Life Stress takes on me. Is taking on me. Because in addition to just sucking in general, it’s also feeding a beast I’m quickly losing control of.

Now I know that I’m not unique in this. A lot of people have Life Stress issues along with mental illness. Some might argue that I’m lucky because I don’t have the added stresses of a spouse and kids and a real job. But think about it. If I can’t handle what I’ve already got, it’s probably for the best that I’m not dealing with more. I’m hardly coping (not really) as it is.

Do I feel like a complete failure and a total baby? Absolutely.

Will I find a way to cope and/or live with it?

I hope so.

The Anxiety Podcast

I like podcasting. I’ve been doing it for a few years now and I’ve decided that it’s something I really like to do. I like guesting on other people’s podcasts and I like running my own. I like the excuse of talking about things I like and the excuse of talking with my friends about stuff we all like. It just happens to be recorded, edited, and put out there for other people to listen to.

Knowing that other people listen is cool and all, but I don’t obsess over my numbers. I don’t concern myself with growing my audience or anything like that. I do a little promoting for Book ’em, Danno and appreciate whatever listens I get. For all I know, those numbers aren’t even people. They’re bots. I hope they enjoy my ramblings. Beep boop.

So, even though I enjoy podcasting and do it primarily for myself, there is one drawback to it, and no, it’s not editing (though I would love it if I could be less persnickety in my editing).

It’s the anxiety fallout after I’ve recorded.

I don’t have much anxiety when recording my own podcast, but I admit that it amps up when I’m guesting on someone else’s podcast. Sometimes the anxiety is bad, but for the most part, it’s not. And the more appearances I make on someone’s podcast (for example Eventually Supertrain), the better the anxiety is because I know what to expect.

However, be it my podcast or someone else’s, as soon as we’re done recording, my anxiety goes through the roof. I second guess everything I said. I ruminate over things I said and things I didn’t say. I think about what a fool I made of myself no matter what I said. And the thing is that I know whatever I said, it was fine. But my brain, at least for several hours afterward, disagrees with that.

When it comes to Book ’em, Danno, I have to wait to edit the episode. I can’t listen to it for at least a week. I’ve got to let that anxiety die down before I can manage it.

When it comes to other people’s podcasts, well, that’s a little trickier. Sometimes I have no problem listening to them when they come out. More than enough time has passed for my anxiety to calm down and usually, I can’t even remember what I said. It’s a delightful surprise when I listen. However, there are some episodes I can’t bear to listen to (and don’t) because I know that my anxiety was up during the recording and knowing that is enough to make my anxiety spike again. I just can’t do it.

Is this all irrational? Of course. That’s how anxiety works. If it were at all rational, then this wouldn’t happen anymore with Book ’em, Danno, and probably wouldn’t happen with Eventually Supertrain.

But it does.

Every. Single. Time.

It’s annoying. And it does contribute to me sometimes procrastinating my own recording schedule because I don’t want to have to deal with myself in the aftermath.

But thankfully, I love podcasting just enough that it makes it all worth it.

At least for me.

The listeners’ mileage may vary.

Displaying Why I Shouldn’t Be in Charge of Displays

Back in the long long ago of my mid-twenties, back when I worked the jewelry counter of the local Wal-Mart, one of my responsibilities was the gift wall. We’d get shipments of stuff for Mother’s Day and Christmas that I’d have to set the wall with that would almost never sell and then I’d be stuck with it until the end of time because we had no storage space over there. Anyway. We’d get smaller amounts of merchandise for Father’s Day. It was my responsibility to fill out that merchandise for a four foot section of Father’s Day stuff. Which meant that I’d go around the store and get stuff from other departments.

One year, for shits and giggles, I put condoms on the gift wall for Father’s Day.

Not one member of management said a word. I don’t think they even noticed.

My coworkers loved it, though.

And so established my reputation as someone who should not be allowed to create displays without a strict mod to go by.

Had this reputation preceded me to the library, perhaps I wouldn’t have been put in charge of the main floor and periodicals displays when two of my coworkers left.

In a nutshell, my job is to create one big display, one medium display, two small displays, one front display, and three DVD/Blu-Ray displays. I make the selections, create the signage, all that fun stuff. They get changed out at least once a month, so I have to come up with themes/subjects. Sometimes the themes are easy to come by: Women’s History Month, Black History Month, Halloween, Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, etc. Sometimes I have to get more creative: National Nothing Day, Christmas Creeps, Pumpkin Patch (all of the covers were orange), National Hobby Month, Count von Count’s birthday, stuff like that.

And sometimes I get really clever.

For example, one February I did a love/hate flip side display with romances on one side and romantic murder mysteries on the other. I also put out a display of true crime books, just for good measure. Feel the love.

Speaking of true crime, both my Mother’s Day and Father’s Day displays included true crime books. My supervisor gave me shit for it, but they were the first ones off the display both times. I know my audience.

Which is why I push limits with some things. I live in a red county. How long before the locals complain about my Pride Month displays? Or complain about how it’s not fair that I’m doing big displays on Black History, Women’s History, Native American Heritage, and Asian Pacific Heritage, but not on White History or White Heritage.

(We did have someone complain about “Black History” books on display after February once. It was literally a new book on the new book shelf. Turns out that books by and about Black people don’t come out in just February. Who knew? Not this jackass.)

Some of my displays do better than others and sometimes I’m surprised by how well some displays do. For example, I was surprised my Christmas Creeps (Christmas horror) display didn’t do that well, but the Winter Solstice display did much better than I thought. I try to take note of that to see what people are looking for.

The library goal of my displays is to put books and DVDs/Blu-Rays in front of people that they might not otherwise look for on their own. Get patrons to expand their horizons.

My personal goal with the displays is to find opportunities to be as aggravating as possible, even if it’s just to needle my coworkers. Or to see what I can get away with. Like the time that I kept Hidden Figures by Margot Lee Shetterly out on display three months in a row, just to see if I could.

I could.

I don’t think anybody noticed. Which is very encouraging for me when I think about the things I could do.

There is a pun display in my future. Oh yeah. I can feel it.

I should never have been put in charge of displays.

I’d Take It Easy (If I Understood What That Meant)

July was a super busy month for me.

I finished revising The End of the (Werewolf) Curse early on and ended up spending most of the month re-designing Kiki Writes About as well as creating aka Kiki Writes. I also did a lot of work on two podcasts. I’ve been busting tail to get ahead of the game on the next season of Book ’em, Danno. Seizing the opportunity of getting Season 2 finished early, I got a jump on Season 3 with the game plan of getting the first two episodes recorded before the end of July, as well as some other prep work finished. I also got the show distributed to two more platforms, Stitcher and Spotify.

I’m also in charge of the podcast at the library I work at and last month I had the goal of finishing a couple of short episodes before launching into the huge project of do individual episodes with everyone I work with to give them an opportunity to talk about their jobs. This is the brainchild of my director, who heard it on a different library podcast. She thought it would be a great way to inform the community (and anyone who listens) about all of the things we do to keep the library running and make the library experience enjoyable. So, I was tasked with coming up with questions and outlines to help my coworkers write their scripts and then scheduled times to record them. But getting there wasn’t easy. Even though my boss was excited about doing this, it seemed like no one was comfortable with it. It was a challenge to get everybody to get their scripts done before I could even get them scheduled. Because I work the night shift, it meant coming in during their shifts to record. Luckily, I don’t have an excessive number of coworkers and I managed to get them all recorded in two sessions. As of the writing of this post, I have everyone recorded and I’m in the process of editing.

Speaking of work, I also found time to participate in our tiny art show, painting a beach scene on a little 3in x 3in canvas.

In more personal matters, I once again changed up my exercise regime in the hopes of improving my workouts while also avoiding some of the issues I’ve had with maintaining real good consistency. Meanwhile, I had a horrible issue with fatigue and my sleeping issues took a turn for the odd (it wasn’t full on insomnia, but I wasn’t sleeping for shit for an extended period either). The roofing and siding that lasted all month long didn’t help, but my house looks pretty now.

So as productive as I was, it was only a matter of time before that battery ran out.

I woke up on the last Friday of July staring at the wall I was poised to run into. After a week of sleeping better, I’d slept like garbage. Exercising seemed too hard that morning. My To Do List seemed overwhelming: I needed to promote the Season 2 finale of Book ’em, Danno and also record Episode 28 for Season 3; I needed to clean and make the grocery list and do my language lessons. In that moment, I decided that I was going to take it easy that day. I wasn’t going to worry about exercising. I’d do the have-to things and leave the rest. I would avoid hitting the wall for once.

Instead, I ended up doing everything on my To Do List, got in a workout later that evening, and even did an additional recording since I already had everything set up.

I am not saying this to show how I’m capable of getting things done despite being exhausted and near-burnout. This is not an inspirational “You too can push yourself too hard and achieve…something!” post.

This is to illustrate how badly wired my brain is. That I sabotage my own good decisions to take breaks by not only doing the work, but doing more work. Call it stubbornness. Call it my Capricorn workaholic tendency. Call it years of conditioning that cause me to fear being seen as “lazy” and equate my productivity with my worth. Call it ill-advised. You’d be right on all accounts.

At least now I can recognize this as a problem and can maybe one day in the future take steps to correct it. I’m already planning on this taking a while. I’ve been this way most of my life. This kind of hard-wiring is hard to redo, especially when you’re a terrible electrician like me.

Good thing I have such a great work ethic.

Writer’s Transition

I noted last October that I was dealing with writer’s apathy. I was hoping that NaNo would snap me out of it. As much as I liked working on my NaNo project and how in the groove I got while I was working on it, I don’t think that it did. I do think, though, that it opened my eyes up to a new possibility.

Maybe it’s not writer’s apathy. Or not maybe it’s not anymore.

Maybe it’s writer’s transition.

When I transitioned from fanfiction to non-fanfiction, I went through a period of writer’s block in which I didn’t write much of anything. It’s entirely possible that my current bout of meh isn’t so much apathy, but a sign of another transition. What kind, I’m not sure. Maybe it’s going from fiction to non-fiction, since I am looking at making some progress on a couple of non-fiction ideas and I am working on a podcast. Maybe it’s a transition of my fiction away from horror to another genre. Maybe it’s a transition away from writing (for now) to something else, like podcasting (which does involve some writing).

Maybe it’s a transition away from writing entirely.

Hell, maybe it’s not a transition at all. Maybe I just need to clear out a bunch of my projects just so I have space to work on something new.

Right now (write now?) I don’t know. I can’t say for sure. I have no intention of stopping what I’m doing until I feel certain about what’s going on. But I’m keeping myself open to a shift. I sort of feel like I’m waiting for a specific something, that “you’ll know it when you see it” thing, and as soon as I do, everything will come into perspective again. I’ll know where I am and what the hell I’m doing.

But, like I said, until then, I’m still working, still writing, still checking off my To Do List.

No need to be bored while I wait for that sign, right?

April Writing Projects

I honestly thought about doing a Twitter poll to decide what to work on this month because I’m feeling a bit adrift at the moment. Not sure what project to focus on, not sure what I want to do, not sure of much of anything.

Last month, I finished a round of revisions on The Coop Run (which may need another round; I’m sending it off to a beta reader to see if I’m getting anywhere with it). Great. I looked at my project list the other day to see what I should be working on this month.

I could start revising Murderville Season 4, but I’d rather wait until May. I like working on Murderville during summer because when I’m not struggling with health/stress issues, I get into a nice rhythm that keeps me busy and happy. I could start revising End of the (Werewolf) Curse because that is one of my projects this year, but I should really fix the beginning of (Vampires) Made in America now that I’ve had my epiphany about it, and start shopping it to agents again. I could revise a couple of scripts, but those projects are sort of pointless because I wouldn’t be able to do anything with them once I got them done.

Who knew this would be such a loaded question?

Well, I did, to be honest.

I wrote last month about how my productivity had been garbage and how I had no interest in much of anything. Shortly after that public whining, I found a burst of mojo that led me to recording a few Book ’em, Danno segments and doing some art and making some significant progress on my revising. The mojo was short-lived, but useful. The next week I felt like I’d been steamrolled and was back to struggling.

Sitting at the end of that week, with the latest round of The Coop Run revisions finished, I asked myself what I should do in April. And when I got that garbled-ass answer above which prioritized the projects that would make me money, I stopped, closed my eyes, and asked myself again.

What do you really want to work on in April?

I want to research and outline one of the ideas I have for a TV book that I’ll probably never write and I want to work on one of the poetry chapbooks I’ve been thinking about doing since it’s National Poetry Month.

Fine. Great. Let’s do that.

I need a break. A break from the pressure to produce. A break from attaching a dollar-value to everything I work on. Yes, I like to get paid for my work, but right now I need to work on something that might turn out to be nothing, something that might not mean anything to anyone but me.

I’ve got a few ideas for how to make the ends meet for May.

But someone has already met their end in Murderville. In fact, we’re at the half-way point of Rounds of Luck as episode 4 goes live on April 9th. Lucky for you, it’s easy to catch up. Become a patron for as little as $1 an episode. $2 patrons receive a bonus every other month, like this month on the 23rd. Don’t wait! Get in on the killer fun!