Here and There

The new artist’s forum, CreativeSpark that mjp and I built is doing pretty well. There are almost forty members now. It’s poppin’, it’s lively, and it already has over 1,200 posts! I can’t believe it.

Maintaining it has been keeping me very busy, so I haven’t had much time for anything else, but I’ve been sneaking in some work on my new book, Queer as Mud, here and there. The first real draft is coming along finally. I am losing a lot of words from the old version, but that’s okay. I’m about 16,500 words into it now, which is almost twice what I was last time I spoke of it. The old draft was nearly 35,000 words. Still not enough for a novel.

Since half of the old draft is disappearing as I write over it, I’ll probably wind up with another 10,000 words. However, I know I’ll be going back over it, and maybe it will bring it to a short novel about a years-long sexual and gender identity crisis. We’ll see how it goes.

I had the opposite problem with the memoir. Pretty funny. That one was originally 300,000 words, which is kind of unbelievable. It was near impossible to edit it down to whatever I ended up with: 130K words or something, plus the glossary. A thick book that is.

No art has been done, except for working out a few compositions for some new bag pieces that I’ve been too lazy to physically start. I have the next five worked out on the computer: colors, paper, fabric, and all. I just need to start with the iron to flatten them and get crackin’.

The bags have already been cut open and assembled. I don’t just cut them open; I cut the remaining panel in three cuts. I wind up with a long rectangle, which I glue to the bottom, and two halves of the other bag handle, which I glue near the bottom on each side so that the piece has little tags sticking out.

I’ve been on the fence with these bag pieces. At first, I loved the idea. Then I started to doubt it. Now I’m unsure and can’t decide if they are worth the effort. I’ve lost confidence, but in the back of my mind, I know I’ll regain it if I just get to work on them. I have to remember that inspiration will find me, but it will be while I’m working.

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