The Home of Steven Barnes
Author, Teacher, Screenwriter

Sunday, December 27, 2009


I woke up this morning ready to drive up to Paso Robles to spend time with my former In-Laws the Youngs. Nicki is living up there with her Mom, and even when she was down here with us, we would go up to Paso to celebrate Christmas. The Youngs do a GREAT Christmas, and are just fabulous people. looks like Nicki might have the flu, and it might be bubbling around the clan today. Yerch. Well...maybe we ain't going to Paso, and that sucks. But is just the way it is.


I want to make it clear concerning my writing: I LOVE writing. It is closer to my heart than anything outside the circle of my family. But writing isn't an objective activity: it isn't how far I hit the ball, it is how loudly the crowd roars. I aim at writing the very best work of my life: I have a couple of real corkers in mind. But if I plan for the cash flow from those books to be my primary source of income, then the time available to write them (as well as the emotional energy) is based NOT on how important the book is to me, but rather how much money I can get out of a publishing company in advance. That isn't fair to the books, because their quality is now determined partially by the subjective unconscious reactions of segments of the population who, in their hearts, consider themselves above bigotry, but are still influenced by race.

That sounds like a really ugly joke. I can't allow that, but see no way to avoid it while remaining totally within the publishing system. So the coaching is designed to take a skill I have developed for years but never really tried to approach professionally, and invert the relationship between teaching/coaching and writing fiction. Seeing myself as an "amateur writer" doesn't mean not writing. It means writing for love, and love alone. From that direction, I am offering a reward to the kid inside me who has been pulling the plough for thirty years. I'm saying: have fun, kid. Write what you want. Daddy's home.

I think that's a good thing.


It is vastly interesting to hook up with so many old friends and classmates on Facebook. I'm running into ladies I had painful crushes on back in school, and now they are grandmothers. That is enough to give ya pause, I'll tell you.


What were my favorite movies this year? Watchmen, Inglorious Basterds, Avatar, a few others. You guys?


Scott said...

Wasn't a great years for movies; Wolverine, I guess.

Dave said...

I really liked Star Trek and Watchmen - but then again I like my Super heroes and Space Battles.

Isn't Facebook wonderful for that? I keep being amazed at how the many of the "girls" I went to High School with are now grandmothers

Dark Eden said...

I'd tentatively have to go with Star Trek. This was a godawful year for movies though...

I recently saw an amazing independent sci fi movie called Ink though...

Check it out, its pretty remarkable given the budget and all.