It's been a weird year all around. Or maybe it's just been a normal year and I'm just over-analyzing things, which I tend to do. The philosopher's brain often takes over when the creative brain isn't firing on all cylinders. Thankfully, however, the creative brain has been taking over this month. It's been far too silent for far too long.
I was recently the recipient of a back injury that left me pretty much immobile. After finally finding a doctor within my insurance network, I had x-rays and an MRI done. Issue: herniated L5 disc with impingement of the sciatic nerve. I haven't been to work in nearly a month, I'm waiting for my short-term disability payments to come through, and I've been given some great drugs that have serioiusly alleviated the pain and allowed me to be more mobile. Thus, I've had a LOT of free time.
First up, I spoke of a publication that was forthcoming. Bluestem Magazine published my story "The Same Night Waits for Us All" last month. A weird piece for me as it's more rooted in realism than my normal stuff. I feel like I wrote it last year around the anniversary of my grandfather's death a few years back. Interesting that that date is coming soon again. You can read that piece here.
I also just got word that another of my stories, "Anatomy of a Mixtape," will be published by Summerset Review in their December issue. That one went through a lot of rejections, with one of those rejections coming with a critique that pretty much gutted the entire story of its heart. If I accepted the changes, the magazine would accept the story. I passed on that. Their critique made no sense in context. I'll post a link to that once it goes live.
I've also been writing for a site called the Weekend Collective. They recently changed their name to Yeah KC! I've had a few articles posted up there as I've had more time to focus on writing them:
1.) The Plaza Art Fair. It's a massive fair of artists across the country who come to sell their wares to the general public. You can read about that and its history here.
2.) I've got a buddy in the rap game who's done work with a lot of great producers over the years and who has turned me onto more new music than I'd ever thought possible. I got to do a write-up on him and a night he's doing here in KC that's spotlighting local talent in the hopes of getting them more exposure. You can read about that here.
3.) Another friend (who is also a DJ) does a lot of graffiti work around town. He's been commissioned by several local businesses as well as national businesses with locations here to create his particular kind of art on their outside walls. He also does awareness work. You can read about him and his endeavors here.
4.) "Black Mirror" just released their third season of Twilight Zone-but-with-more-technology weirdness on Netflix. It's seriously a fantastic show that highlights how our dependence on technology might just end up ruining us. The writers of this show do phenomenal storytelling, often bringing about a twist that is completely unexpected by even the most well-read of people. You can read about that here.
Beyond that, I've returned to some old stories that remain unfinished, hoping I can create decent endings for them. Just last night I finished one called "Movie Music" that's been sitting around for about two years waiting for an ending. I finally found it and submitted it out to several magazines yesterday evening.
Tonight, I've found myself mired in the world of "The Motel Palms," a run-down place full of some very interesting characters that may finally get the ending it deserves sometime this week. I added about 1,000 words to it tonight out of nowhere, so this might be the next one to get finished before I head to Phoenix this weekend for my youngest sister's wedding.