Step Number two: Come up with an idea. Um, NOW might be helpful.


I had no intention of posting a follow up to the “possibly getting published” post from the other day.  But then I realized.  I’ve been writing for different things for years.  I’ve been published in things that saw regionally-limited circulation.

But I’ve never earned a solitary dime doing any of it.

That’s not a bitter recollection, either.  It just stands as a monumental testimony to the fact that, whatever skills I am perceived to have–or happen to believe I have (which I do believe, or I wouldn’t even be here now) has come from the pure desire to flail away at the page and see what happens.

Plus, I like causal effects to stuff I say.

The thing is is this: Had I had NO blogosphere with which to engender thought, outrage, distress, and occasional governmental blacklisting–the publication from which I was solicited would’ve never had an idea some clown from Redding, Ca. had any facility to write passionate and edgy jeremiads about the subject this publication primarily espouses.

They know how I write. Plus, they also kind of have an idea of the horrific, pathological imbalances I carry, and choose to ignore them.

So here’s the parameters of as-yet-unnamed publication (I’d prefer not to front load my own presumptive defeat by mentioning who or where, yet):

  • Pitch an idea by mid July
  • if pitch accepted, article and photos to be delivered by mid- August

Because I have some stupid, procrastinatory tick in my brain that says “ahh, you got thirteen whole days. Chill,” I must do something else, which is technically known as “The exact opposite of what my brain tells me to do.”

So, last night I had my pitch.  It was a simple idea, helpful, insightful, and brings perhaps a small-but-important permutation to a philosophy governing my heretofore vaguely-indicated subject.

Something didn’t feel complete.  Something told me, yeah, it’s okay.  You can make it good, but in the end, it’ll feel like a well-written description of something that will perhaps not be that interesting. I could retroactively write a point-for-point narrative of Geraldo Rivera’s “Al Capone’s Vault” debacle, too.  But I’d rather cover King Tut’s tomb.

I sat down to email them my pitch.  But something felt incomplete. Pedestrian.  Boilerplate. Trying to vault a ten-foot-deep moat with a ten-foot pole.

Suddenly–and I’m not kidding–I looked at one of my musical instruments sitting in the case. And with that, an entire coalescence was achieved in under ten minutes.  I have not written the piece yet, but I had what I believe is something that no one else will even come close to broaching during the submission period.

All because I took en extra minute and looked outside whatever phony parameters I had given myself.

Bam. Done. Submitted.

We will see if my instincts are correct.

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11 Responses to Step Number two: Come up with an idea. Um, NOW might be helpful.

  1. Pam says:

    Waiting with baited breath, chomping at the bit, on the edge of my seat, holding my breath, can’t wait to read it.

  2. mammaflybox says:

    Good for you! You live in Redding? I grew up in the Paradise/Chico area. 🙂

  3. James Gibson says:

    You’re on your way!…


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