Straw Sign

9:14am.  Cut out run.  Here in condo, about to inject words to blog.  The aviation short will begin typing today, after Eng 5 class.  Will be out door at 10:30a, latest.  Enjoying 4shot mocha.  Thinking of character, Kelly.  After this first chapbook, thinking I’ll release a collection of shorts.  Strictly fiction, exposing style/philosophy on the Craft.  Well, of both fiction and short stories/flash pieces as well.  Actually, thinking I might just jump in shower, head to Petaluma, get head start on day ahead of me.  The majority of material, from this point in my Life, forward, will be in/on teaching, what I do with/for students, and what I write with that in mind–  OH how this 4shot mocha works for its writer.

Cold outside, a bit, these first Fall days.

Should I bring laptop?  Why not.  Just do it.  Listening to chilled beats, help calm the writer.  But my resolution of leaving early for campus, I’m much more composed, relaxed.  Yes, I’ll be on Road soon.  Stanford, awaiting.  I have to do something totally different, maybe a bit drastic with classes today, to supply more material, construct more engaging lessons for students.

Exploration of Art.. the concept.. memoir, already being Art in Life.

Life is Art.


This A.M., start of something.  Want to go to Stanford’s site, but can’t let Self.

This, what’s snapping synaptically, this morning.. nearly too much for writer.  But I’m calm.  Characters in students.. one always participating, one never speaking nor responding to blog prompts, one always challenging, complaining; one always wanting to joke, one seldom speaking but when he does it’s insightful, useful; and, he’s a great writer, very vocal, provocative, precisely humorous.

Study these students more.. take notes.. fictionalize names.

Should get in shower, get ready.  Still feel yesterday’s run.  Glad I didn’t go out this morning.

11:02am.  So quiet, this reading room on Petaluma’s Campus.  Thought I forgot the inclass papers I have to grade for English 5, but no such luck.  I shouldn’t say that.. and I shouldn’t procrastinate.  Getting right to it, with laptop ready for capturing any captivating lines.  Why do I not enjoy grading as much as other aspects of this job?  Easy, it puts me in the position of assigning worth, putting a number (points), or “grade,” to one’s work, as if writing can be so simply reduced to such.

“But must an author write with a point, a direction in mind?” one student wrote, about Capote’s ‘Muses Are Heard’.  “Instead, Capote writes to observe generally,” she continues.  “The fact that Mr. Capote is on this journey…shows his avarice for knowledge.”

Another student wrote, “Mr. Capote detailed throughout his account the entrapping immaculate power art holds over people…”

What is the right way to Stanford, for me?  Certainly not doing last-minute grading like this.  I know precisely what to do.  Write more on board.. plan menu for day [this idea coming to me just after getting in car, heading to get gas for Passat [which I grow ever SICK of driving].

Closing device, headed into naturalistic slips…

8:18pm.  Holding off on aviation piece a bit longer.  Instead, will inject 500-510 word piece into book.  Not sure what about, but I will finish it tonight, print it tomorrow before work.. use someone in tasting Room as sample reader.  My sample audience.  As I’ve said so many bloody times: “Want to print more, get further away from this devil blog.” Opening something tonight, not sure what.  Maybe the ’11 Century Vine Zin.  Ugh, but Zin…?  Not sure what else I have down here.

Can hear outside’s winds.  Surprised how forceful they’ve grown, since earlier.  Looking at my latest issue of WineMaker magazine.  Where do I want to go with this?  I’m not sure.  I do want to make more wine, just not sure of approach, and how much coin with which I’m willing to part.  The publishing, printing of my pieces MUST come first.  Weighing all–

This semester, keeping me writing.  Tonight’s discussion with the 1A section, on Walls’ ‘Glass Castle’, reminding me that memoir can provoke just as much emotion, discussion, reaction[!!!] as fiction.  Not sure why I always downplay or involuntarily degrade nonfiction.

9:55pm.  To bed soon.  Sipping night’s capping.  Posted to teaching blog twice.  Should bring some grading to work tomorrow.  Yes, 5 pieces.  OR 6.  3 from 1A, 3 from 5.  Now I’m blanking.  I am stretched quite thin, a writer, this semester.  But I have to push.  Bringing little pages with me to work tomorrow, as I always do.  But I want a piece of standalone fiction, tasting Room fiction.. one different.  All dialogue, no narration, exposition.  Like a play, but more Literary.  Can already see the people, from state to which we can’t sip, asking idiotic questions.

Much I criticize people coming into the tasting Room, I’m quite anaclitic.  For sakes of this fiction.  Love what they say, how they approach wine.

No regrets in cutting out run this morning, but I’m already itching for next sprint set.  Won’t be able to run tomorrow night, so I’ll do pushups, or jumping jacks, or something here in home.  Thursday morning, surely fitting in a couple miles.  Planning a 55 minute step set.  25 out, then back.  Hopefully I make it into Howarth, see some trees.

Not editing this night’s words tonight.  Too tired, believe it or not.  Will edit in morning, to the new Verona coffee I bought tonight, on a spurred grocery run for dinner.

Character:  Isela, making coffees at home for fellow employees at private upscale grocery store in Calistoga; her aim, to own her own café; saving all her tips in envelope, in safety deposit box; she loves seeing how they react; new recipes, each day, even writing her own menu.. and its all free for her friends; but they don’t let her work for free, be too sweet; they force their money onto her; she only accepts as to not be rude, that’s how lovely she is.  (9/24/13)

9/25/13–  Finished another standalone.  Closer to book’s finish.  Won’t be done by Sept’s close, which is fail.  But I don’t care.  There’s a new focus about me, concerning these standalone pieces, which is precisely what’ll take me to the Road.  This teaching blog, turning out to be a gold mine.  The truest of true bullion pots.

Sipping night’s cap, in this Racer 5.  Time, 10:35pm…  Running 10 miles tomorrow morning.  Will write between 5 and 1A.  Thought much today about the reactions to my recital at the bowling alley, just a couple nights ago.  Having people come hear you speak your ideas, visions, dreams.. what’s more rewarding?  No wine production could rival that, EVER.  And I’m sure some talking winemaker would offer how it could.  But you and I both know that NO bottle of wine could rival manuscript’s sonorous potential.

But they’re not worth my address, the “winemakers,” most of whom simply ride nature’s coattails to systematic scores.  What I want to address: this new story, possible novel I see shaping, in this semester, with my students.. their dedication, ownership of topic selection.  Wish I could have a cup of that Verona Roast [DARK] I bought last night, as I’d love to be up all hours writing about them, their interests in my assigned readings.  Need to finish this first chapbook, so I can maybe start this book.  My character, ME, finding new love of teaching, finding ways to engage students through course material, challenge of proscribed course outline, “curriculum.”

Hoping I wake early tomorrow, as I did the other morning, at 3-something.  I remember thinking of typing something, like one line, to tilts of “I’m awake, and I’m writing, what a shock…” Something like that.  Giving Self a deadline.  10 minutes from now, 11pm.  Need to embrace more this notion of “dead”lines.  Why does ‘dead’ have to be there, in that conception?  Isn’t that where the piece, the STANDALONE, comes alive, when the writer finishes it?  Just thinking aloud, reader.  Please pardon.

My first Road trip, know precisely how it’ll follow:  I’ll write.  The whole time.  I’ll be so enamored, so trapped, I won’t appreciate what’s happening.  And that’s one of the falls of writers like I: we feel the we always have to be writing.  I always say I hope people notice the obsessive habits.  By me hoping, I’m insulting the readers.  It’s quite obvious, Mike.

Oh coffee…  Why do you haunt me?  Would love a cup right now.  But I don’t want to wake the little Artist.  I remember a guest at AV Winery last year, at a release party, warning me about the trials of being a parent, that you won’t get to do much what you wish.  I remember saying, “I’ll write my way through it,” or something like that.  He laughed, almost condescendingly, as if to suggest ‘you don’t know what you’re in for’.  And here I am, writing more than I EVER have.  IF anything, that little perpetually-positive pulse has spurred my scribbles, irreversibly.

AV winery.. wow.  Seems so long ago.  My 128 sessions, on that little side lot.. dirt, birds, trees, cyclists.  Time, another victory, in my noticing passes.

Setting alarm, 5AM.  To write.  Not run.  Will do latter after Kerouac is dropped off.

9/26/13–  Can’t believe what I brought Self to do..  Finished 3PAGES today, amounting to a 1,566 word short story.  In my adjunct office, currently.  Printed it.  Stapled.  Will read tonight, to a beer, or sparkling water.  I’ve proven again that I CAN make Self focus, finish a piece.  So now, I reward Self with freewrite…

What else do I have to do before class?  […]  Plan session.. oh, I wanted to start that Jack Kerouac piece [500 words] at some point.  Maybe a bit too wired to so do, now, with this 2shot mocha reviving a caffeine quake swarm in my unstable circuitry.  3:19pm.  Should go to bookstore, or library.  Should really dart down to Barnes & Noble, get a book of Kerouac’s poems, writings.  Never did finish ‘On the Road’, did I.  Took some notes in my lecture Comp Book about his writing style, earlier today while in Petaluma Library.

Going to class tonight with only text and Comp Book.  That’s it.  Utterly minimalist.  Not taking attendance, as I know who’s there, who’s not.  How students don’t come to class, expecting to somehow pass, keep up with material, will always be a logic puzzle, unsolvable, to me.

Listening to music, but feel boxed, trapped.. this bloody office.  Can’t see anything, just what they want.  Haven’t eaten the blueberry scone I bought.

There, took a couple bites.

But uninspired.  Have to change what’s in eyes, ears.  Deafened, lessened…

10:02pm.  Home.  Night’s capping…  Tomorrow, back at winery.  Visiting my wines tomorrow, no matter what.  Hoping no damage.  Quite proud of the short story, today.  And, that 10minute rushed write in lectures Comp Book, which I shouldn’t have done.

Tired.  No more in me.

Leafless tree.  Winds carrying questions

only.  Careful reaction, attacked

attraction, looking into

messages, letter I wrote myself,

over a decade ago;