Saturday, February 19, 2011

Another year

My first two words on this blog, last July, were “I’m 53….”

Today I’m 54. One more year until I qualify for Denny’s senior menu! If you’re having a local party and you like balloons, check this out: Rudy & Sergio are friendly, good-energy people.

In 10 days I’m off to Puerto Vallarta, a short trip to celebrate an anniversary. Good restaurants, excellent crackers, and majolica are waiting. So am I.

For me, re-evaluation means thinking, considering how I want to spend my future time. I prefer productivity and enjoyment as opposed to throwing myself against a brick wall. No hasty decisions. Like me, waiting for Puerto Vallarta, Half Italian also waits, for a home.

And so do those fleece jackets up at the Goodwill. I wonder how much…?

- PJ

Friday, February 18, 2011

Eve of 54

Last Saturday I walked up to the boulevard under beautiful sunshine, wearing a t-shirt, shorts, and sandals. Browsing the Goodwill store after dropping things off I noticed many warm-looking fleece jackets on the racks. Tonight it’s 45 degrees and pouring rain. Good weather for some, but for those whose home is outdoors, this is nasty. And it’s only 6:30.

I sit at my desk, central heat on, sipping a whiskey. Earlier, gray clouds tripped, landing on the hill behind the Goodwill, making my little Tuscany invisible.

All those fleece jackets locked inside, and so many people outside.

One Thanksgiving I asked a friend if he was thankful for his senses. He stared.

Without our senses, our sense of touch, how could we possibly function, or help others?

I wish I could buy every one of those fleece jackets.

- PJ

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

8/8. Re-evaluation.

Well, the time has come. I waited longer than I said I would, for responses to follow-ups I wrote about in my last post. One rejection arrived a week ago. At least the agent kindly said “grazie” for my submission, in spirit, I assume, for the Italian nature of the book.

No response to the other follow-up; I’ll count that as a rejection.

8/8. Done, with a submission project that began last summer.

Doesn’t anyone want to read the chapter titled “Grandma”?

Patient beyond belief, that’s what I sometimes am. That once paid off, when I was buying a car and wanted 100% financing. Lucky them, I had excellent credit and the loan was quickly granted after my credit check came through.

But how long must I wait? This is 96 agent submissions now.

Platform seems to be a requirement. Platform. The word makes me feel like publishers and agents want to lean on me. Platform means established in some way, perhaps published, a celebrity, someone….but we’re not interested if you’re no one. Can’t fault the agents, they’re just going after what publishers want, and, as I wrote in my 8/20/2010 post, platform means less marketing expense for publishers.

Give up? I believe in this project and I believe others would truly enjoy the book, given a chance.

Outside my window, above the hill with my little Tuscany, the sky that was clear and turquoise just days ago is punched with dark clouds. The temperature has dropped. February is here.

- PJ

Friday, February 4, 2011

A full week

It’s Friday evening. I sit at my desk, facing the window, looking at the lights on the hill with my little Tuscany/Umbria, dark, now, but once again rich green in daylight. All that December rain followed by all the January sun caused things to grow, which caused my allergies to act up, which caused my asthma to flare up (first time in over 15 years), which led me to the emergency room last Sunday morning, wheezing and rattling. A few days with steroids and inhaler, however, and I’m good as new.

A vegetable tart bakes in my oven this evening: zucchini, red bell pepper, butter beans, sautéed in olive oil, splashed with marsala, dashed with balsamic, and sprinkled with herbs de Provence from the France trip last fall. A pastis seemed more fitting than my usual whiskey, so I sit here, and sip.

Today I emailed the agent who requested follow-up, also the one who said to allow five to six weeks for reply. Why not both? I count the agent with no website as a rejection, taking myself to 6/8.

The Super Bowl is Sunday; Dallas didn’t even make it to the playoffs.

I won't check my email for responses until Monday morning. I love to dream, and I'm also a realist.

- PJ