Monday, March 12, 2012

A weekend away from writing

Yes, I took the weekend off and spent the time planting my garden. I have some pumpkins growing which were started from the seeds of last year's jack o' lantern. Hopefully this will save me the arduous task of dropping $30.00 at the local pumpkin vendor this year. I also planted zucchini, corn, hot and sweet peppers, radishes, and onion sets. Still have a lot more to plant next weekend but curses! my roto-tiller broke and I have to affront repairs. The growing season here in Florida starts anytime it wants to, and it can get extremely hot at any point. I learned from visiting a website put out by Florida State University that the germination and flowering of plants is determined by soil temperature, not length of growing time. This explains why last year I had bean plants that had two or three leaves on them and started blooming. I planted late, and they got rather warm. Hopefully this year I am on time, but I'm two weeks later than when I wanted to start. Pictures coming...

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Contest Season is upon us

2012 starts off with some good competitions available. GlimmerTrain has the Fiction Open, with a prize of $2500.00. The contest occurs four times a year , with the first in March. 

Writer's Digest has the 81st Annual Writing Competition 
 GRAND PRIZE:  $3,000 cash, a trip to the Writer’s Digest Conference in New York City, and
individual attention from 4 editors or agents.

I have three stories I am going to submit to each one,  hopefully I can lock down some prize money and get a couple by-lines for my resume. Not that I'm looking for a job, mind you. In fact, I don't even have a resume. What I do have is a box full of notebooks and manuscripts from a decade of writing that someday will go to my local community college where students will travel from all over the country to peruse through my archived scribblings. 

In the meantime, I have added a video of the ending of Factotum which contains Matt Dilon narrating these lines from Bukowski's poem "Roll the Dice". I have put the text here in case the Youtube video gets taken down, as is prone to happen.

Charles Bukowski
“If you're going to try, go all the way. Otherwise, don't even start. This could mean losing girlfriends, wives, relatives and maybe even your mind. It could mean not eating for three or four days. It could mean freezing on a park bench. It could mean jail. It could mean derision. It could mean mockery--isolation. Isolation is the gift. All the others are a test of your endurance, of how much you really want to do it. And, you'll do it, despite rejection and the worst odds. And it will be better than anything else you can imagine. If you're going to try, go all the way. There is no other feeling like that. You will be alone with the gods, and the nights will flame with fire. You will ride life straight to perfect laughter. It's the only good fight there is.”

I became a Bukowski fan in 2005 after reading "Ham on Rye." "Factotum" and "Post Office" were good as well. They are listed on my "Books I've Read" page with links to purchase them through if so desired.