08. Bits and Pieces

It is only a few years ago that writing moved up to a Favorite Pastime in my overly-diverse set of pursuits and I have not produced much good writing in that time.  I’ve worked at becoming a better writer and noticed improvement does come along, however slowly.

“The writing gets better but the struggle never gets any easier,”  said  Jason Roberts at the Squaw Valley Writers Conference several years ago.  Few maxims have stuck with me so tenaciously.  Jason Roberts, is the author of the excellent read, A Sense of the World, How a Blind Man Became the Greatest Traveler in History.

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In the category of great one-liners, this was overheard recently:

“I got a golden retriever in 2003, the year my husband left me for a bleached out babe.  I figured if he could have a blonde bitch, so could I.”

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In the category of blogs I like, is Pat Bean’s Blog, (http://patbean.wordpress.com) The March 1 post suggests Ten Waterfalls to add to your bucket list.  Pat is in her 7th year on the road with her dog, Maggie, in their 22’ motorhome, Gypsy Lee.  Avid birders will enjoy her daily blog which evidences the polish of a career reporter. According to her blog, she is putting the finishing touches on her book, Travels with Maggie.

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Here are a few things from the spam avalanche that are worth repeating:

Always read stuff that will make you look good 
If you die in the middle of it.

Never lend anyone more money than you can afford to give as a gift.

If you lend someone $20 and never see that person again,
 you got the good end of the deal.

Some mistakes are too much fun to make but once.

A truly happy person is one who can enjoy the scenery on a detour.

You are never lost until you need to know where you are.

There is a name for people who are lost, pioneers.

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8 Responses to 08. Bits and Pieces

  1. karen wittgraf says:

    This is not a one liner, but I love it- an Irish blessing:
    May those that we love, love us
    And those that don’t love us,
    May God turn their hearts,
    And if He doesn’t turn their hearts,
    May He turn their ankles
    So we’ll know them by their limp.

  2. Laila says:

    I love the golden retriever one:) you gote jooked on reading your blogs.

  3. Dave L says:

    Being a pragmatist, I like the twenty-buck axiom because it’s useful. As to writing, I havn’t reached the struggle yet, it’s all been a glorious ride, but more than one has tried to convinced me — I’m in for it. I don’t see much struggling in your writing, Al — do you struggle?

    • allevenson says:

      God, do I struggle. Hemingway said, “First drafts are shit.” Mine are. I re-write, agonize over word choices, invert sentences, and move whole paragraphs around for several more drafts. I like to let anything I write age overnight. If I let it sit for a couple of days, whole paragraphectomies become obvious. Then I read it out loud. I have never read 100 consecutive words aloud without changing something. Then I ask someone else to read it. That someone finds approx one correction per 100 words. When I skip any step in the process, it shows. That is not to say I dont get the glorious ride that you describe, I do. There is nothing like the way the words burst on to the page when you are in the groove. When that happens for me, I have a first draft worth struggling with. If I am lucky I can pin the draft two falls out of three.

  4. Starting the day with a smile and laughter is the best way to greet the sunrise.

    I heard one recently from a banker who grew up in Fiji. While we were waiting for his computer to load a page (it was slow and he had to reboot), I made a comment about too much demand on the cable.

    He then told me of a Fiji joke about the cables that carry Internet traffic.

    In America, it was decided to see what type of cables were buried in the ground to see if they needed to be upgraded, so they dug down five feet and discovered a fiber optic cable and were happy so they filled in the hole,

    In Japan, they had to dig ten feet to find the fiber optic cable.

    In Fiji, they dug down 15, twenty, and thirty feet and found nothing. They were very happy because they concluded that they had wireless.

  5. Colleen Rae says:

    Writing can be a struggle and difficult at times, but a happy man (woman) is one who writes and enjoys every minute of it in spite of the struggle. Believe me, you can do both – struggle and enjoy.

  6. AL PEDERSEN says:

    I CAN’T TELL IF YOU GET AMPS FROM WRITING, REWRITING, AGONIZING OR SUBMITTING (I MEAN THE DOCUMENT). MY ATTEMPTS INDICATE THE SECOND. I FALL IN LOVE WITH MY WORDS. I HAVE NO RIGHT TO COMPARE WITH YOUR EFFORTS BUT I SO MUCH ENJOY YOUR REVELATIONS FROM THE ROAD. I SIT HERE IN THE LAP OF LUXURY ‘BUT’ WITHOUT MY ANCHOR WHO MADE MY LIFE INTERESTING AND COMPLETE FOR SO MANY YEARS. I DIDN’T THINK MUH OF THAT ANGLE BEFORE SHE WAS GONE. PLEASANT TRAVELS. PLEASE KEEP IN TOUCH. YOU COULD BE WASHING UNDERWEAR AND MAKE IT EXCITING, ESPECIALLY FOR THOSE OF US WITH UNDERWEAR.
    PLEASANT TRAVELS HOME. BIG AL HERE!!

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