Sunday, April 3, 2016

The April State of the Union Address

I want to drop a quick line just to say that I'm glad to have completed at least the basic tutorial of my trade system.  It has been 18 months since I asked people to send me $1 as proof that they cared about such a thing - and believe it or not, that money has weighed heavily on me as I've failed to live up to my part of the bargain.  I feel better, since I think I've given at least $1 worth of effort.

Contributions to the jumpstarter have completely dried up.  This was to be expected.  We raised $2,768 in the space of two months; with help from my friends and daughter, sales of the book (which were unusually high in late February), we managed to hang on by our fingernails, staying in our home and having something to eat every day.  Of course, we haven't been out to a restaurant since before Christmas, nor a movie, a concert or anything else - because that is how it is.  Right now, I can't afford coffee at the nearby Starbucks.  But the computer is running, the internet is paid for, the collection agencies are held at bay and there's new hope.

Yesterday afternoon I was given a phone call and offered a part-time job.  It is 28 hours a week at $13 an hour, and it's kitchen work.  As such, I will be soon up to my hips in sauces, hot oil and dishwater; but it is a guaranteed wage.  I sure as hell hope I don't injure myself or it turns out to be the sort of place that refuses to pay me - both experiences I've had in the last six months as I discover the restaurant industry has apparently gone and fucked itself in the head.

Just want people to know that I'm doing my part.  I will continue to ask for contributions: Ternketh Keep is worth the $10, the AirShip is worth $5 and I will have a preview ready for the $25 donation in 24 days.  The cold-hearted, pedantic editor is chafing to get the content from me each week because I'm told it is just that damn good - so if you want to see what I'm doing, help me out.

As ever, the rest of the jumpstarter rewards are as follows:

Do me a favour: pass around the image to people with a link
to this blog.

The end of May deadline for the book is . . . well, in jeopardy.  That was identified assuming I had time in April and May to dedicate myself to the book (with our minimal living expenses paid), but now I'm going to be working as well at a heavy-labour job (at least for someone who is 51), so I'm going to be either working or drained.  The book will be finished - people who know me know I don't leave things undone (re: trade system tutorial); but the exact schedule for final product may have to be pushed off a month.  I can't make it too long, however, since I need a hard copy in my hands when I go to Edmonton to the Expo there in September.

Incidentally, that was bought and paid for by my daughter.  She insisted.

I'm still hoping to have the energy to pull it together by the 31st of May; I'm two-thirds of the way through the 2nd rewrite and as I say the editor is getting final copy from me now.  However, it may be more realistic to assume the 30th of June.  I will just have to keep working and see how it goes.  One bad section in a book can really screw up forward momentum - but just now, I don't foresee a single technical issue in the book I haven't already fixed.  It is only a question of, "Can I write a given scene well enough?"  That's a question that haunts every writer.

To sum up, if the reader can help me out, please do.  I'm going to be paying for bills this month but not much more; I had some friends drop by just today to help fill up our larder, entirely without being asked (golden people that they are).  If there is a way I have made it through this life, it is upon the support I have had from the best friends in the world.  Just now, anyone who helps us out in this troubled time counts among that number.

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