Saturday, January 19, 2008

The Joys & Pains of Being a Writer

This writing thing isn't as easy as it looks.

I know what you're thinking - if a half-wit like me can make a go of it, a set of trained chimps hammering on a bunch of typewriters should be able to churn out something mildly entertaining in no time. Sadly, no one has gotten that to work for them as of yet, so I still come off looking somewhat talented.


Yesterday was one of those good day / bad day dichotomies that occasionally pop up in my writing life where a whole truckload of things go really well, but one thing goes piss-poor and spoils it all. Ironically, it's that the one thing didn't go at all that put a damper on an otherwise outstanding afternoon.

First of all, a day without Blockbuster is automatically great. Nothing personal to those of you from The Block who happened to work yesterday, but I love my time away from there more than almost everything in life. I'm sure you all understand.

Second, I smashed out two posts yesterday - the soundtrack piece below and a little fun piece about an idiot on the San Diego Chargers who should have kept his mouth shut over at Epic Carnival. Any time I can manage to actually put together two well received pieces in one day is pretty sweet.

Adding to the sweetness, I did an interview with a guy I went you university with who is trying to change the world one t-shirt at a time.

His name is Jeff Woodrow and he runs his own t-shirt company. I'm not going to go into great detail - (1) so you'll buy the issue of Passion a couple months from now that features the interview and (2) because I want you all to go to his site and find out about it for yourself. As with most things here, you'll thank me for doing so...

Long story short, I hadn't talked to Woody in a long time and it was wicked to reconnect and talk to someone of like mind who has given up everything to chase his dreams and try to make a difference.

But of course, since everything was going so wonderfully smooth and I was in such a great mood, something had to come up and ruin it. As I said before, it's actually that it didn't come up that made me mad.

Yesterday marked a full month since I hurriedly put the finishing touches on my next article for Passion, a feature (2000 words!) on Celebrity Comebacks for the January/February edition. This is the piece that I had to put together and submit while we were home on vacation, you know, when I was supposed to be relaxing and enjoying my time off.

So, d'you know how many emails and pieces of correspondence I have gotten since being told I needed to have the piece in pre-Christmas as the next issue was going to be put together before New Years? I'm pretty sure you can make a good guess...


As my man Smitty said to me back last month when I bitched to him about the suddenly sprung deadline, it is quite amazing how someone or a collection of someones needs a month or more to layout my words. I know it is a much harder task than I actually think it is, but here's the rub:

I haven't even got back a "Article looks great, here are the corrections / edits we need you to make" email as of yet. Either I wrote a perfect article (Not effing Likely) or we're still not at the editing stage which makes me wonder why the hell I needed to get that piece in so goddamn early in the first place?! I could have spent another week easy doing more in-depth research than I did and would have had an even better article. I mean, don't get me wrong, it's great and you're going to love it, but I know it could have been even better.


The one silver lining to all this is that the one email I have gotten from Passion Magazine in the last month was a request for a photo and professional bio for the next issue's Contributors section.

That's right - a picture of me and my mohawk all up in the next issue - plus a shout out to B&C and a mention of a little blog project too...

I'm done whining... thanks for listening.


newt (na) said...

That stinks that you haven't received any correspondence regarding your article... I don't know the in's and out's of writing for a magazine but is it possible that they made grammatical and other minor corrections themselves or does that cross a barrier between writer and editor?
I still have not spotted passion magazine in our local chapters. Im just hoping that they are all sold out.

E. Spencer Kyte said...

You could also find it at Shoppers Drug Mart...

As for the other part, I'm not 100% either, but since the last two pieces entailed me changing like fourteen words, I'm still guessing I'm on the hook for all changes.

I'll keep you updated.

Chalk said...

Is "I Blog Because I Can" short for "I Blog Because I Can Do It Better Than Any Chimp?"

E. Spencer Kyte said...

Honestly, it stems from a t-shirt I had growing up.

On the front it "Why?"

On the back it said "Because I Can"

I loved it, because it was simplistic and cocky all at the same time, kinda like me. So now it's here...

Ashley said...

I feel kinda stingy that I didn't actually "buy" the first issue of the magazine...I wanted to ....but by the time I was freed from exams and I went to Chapters to get it, they didn't have Erin gave me one of her two copies....that she bought at....Shopper's!!! So yeah, I'll definitely get my own copy of issue number 2! Ha ha!