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9:54 a.m. - January 22, 2004
Several coulds but it is certain: Those things I thought impossible are coming my way faster than I realize and my one day will be tomorrow before long
Iíve finished Book I and Book II and there are new deadlines though Barbara-the-Editor suggests playing semantics games and calling them development benchmarks but she is like a literary vampire squeezing every word out of me one consonant and vowel at a time. Yes, ideally it would be great to have Books III and IV come out (only!) a year after the first two but folks, this is not going to happen. Instead, Iím going to focus on two shorter books Ė no 484- and 592-page tomes here Ė both of which are a breather so to speak from the tedious business of writing. Fun projects, both! Note radical attitude adjustment after Book II was completed and overnighted and to wax unoriginal Iíd mention freedom and heaviness replaced by spring air but Iím far too sarcastic and jaded at this point.

Early-morning teleconference with Barbara-the-Editor this morning, 6:00 a.m. my time. Damn the East coast and those who live there. Discussed travel plans, a new fee structure, the royalties arrangement (to decrease my tax liability Iím directing a third of all first-year royalties to the scholarship fund at the alma mater thatís in the works), and conference plans for the upcoming academic year. Planning in 2004 for 2005 is bad enough until she brings up the longer-range plans for Books III, IV, V, and VI taking us to 2008 and my head pounds. She is preparing for her retirement on my back.

Discussed computers (per my contract, I get a new one every other year) and the one I have now is fantastic so Iíd rather defer a new acquisition. She wants me to give up the PC in favor of Apple and switch to the other publishing software from the Adobe I currently use and forgive me massa, but am I branded too? But one look at the PowerMac G5 and Iím ready to play. I trade my ideals like a poker pro: In the end, everything for my gain.

Mentioned something about balancing school, work, and writing and Barbara-the-Editor asked if I realize that once the royalties start coming in, I donít have to work (other than writing). Next year I can say my occupation is writer and Iíll derive more than sufficient income to do nothing but what I want, whether itís school full-time or writing full-time. Isnít that incredible? Itís funny Ė I hadnít thought about that aspect of things other than setting up the scholarship fund and thinking Iíd buy more property, invest and live the status quo of writing one full day per week and during the evenings / weekends. But I might not have to. I suspect I lack the discipline to write without time constraints and would become sloth-like, migrating my computer to the bed and typing half-heartedly while watching reruns of old sitcoms. Damn, that has a certain lure right about now.

I could travel, take my trip to South America, the one I say Iím not yet good enough / accomplished enough / hard working enough to take. I could move, leave California. I could get a dog. I could get a pony and ride him on my boat and we could go out on the ocean.


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