Sunday, January 31, 2010

What I Did For My Summer Vacation (aka Where Was I For 2 Years!!!)

I am going to start things off with the most factual statement that has sounded like an outright lie.

I like blogging.

I know the first thought that rampages into your head is, 'You haven't posted since June of 2008, and it is a new decade now!!!' First of all, when you put it that way you make it sound like it has been 10 years since my last post, when the reality is that it has only been a little less than 2 years. But I do see the humour in one claiming I enjoy blogging and then, proceeding to never ever do it. I could come up with a several dozen different excuses, along with 'reasons' why I've been awful at e-mailing too, but the reality is, all of them would be more wretched than a piece of rotting, 7 year old tripe (I wouldn't want to know how truly wretched that is because I know from experience how awful fresh tripe smells let alone its possible taste). Instead, I will admit that I've been an awful blogger, I've had my atrocious reasons for not blogging, but now, have every intention of remedying this atrocity.

I am sure this now sends another thought/question zooming into your noggin which is, 'Why now?' Besides the fact that I claim to actually enjoy blogging, I actually have an ulterior motive to my return to the web. I've decided that I want to proactively pursue a career as a full time writer. Now, I am not naive enough to believe Emily would allow me to claim daily posting on this blog to be a respectable career. I am aware that a career usually involves being paid and my payment here is a big fat 0. I am also not saying that I plan to become a full time writer in the very near future but rather, hope to be able to achieve this goal within the next 10 years (at this point, that seems like a fair enough timeline).

I've established that I know this blogging thing is not a way to make an income and I also realize that a full time writing career will take time, so how does this blog help with my career pursuit? That is an excellent question which I will now finally answer. I feel it helps in 3 major ways, which are the following:

1) A successful writing career is one where the person writes. Since I would like my desired career in writing to be successful, I've decided that I should write. A lot. Besides constantly trying to churn out material that will be sent to possible client and publishers, I will continue to polish my writing skills here. I am hoping the ol' adage 'Practice makes perfect' will pay off. Actually, I don't have visions of me being the 'perfect' writer but I wouldn't mind being pretty darn good. Or at least, someone that gets paid to put words on paper (or a screen).

2) This goes along with my first point, a successful writer is one who can meet his deadlines. I need to be used to writing on a regular basis and getting out quality material in a timely fashion. Since I have absolutely zero clients and nothing concrete in the works, I will use this blog as my way to prepare myself for such a schedule. This means that my current goal is to try to have something posted daily, though I realize there will be the occasional missed day (hopefully, no more 2 year breaks though). I know that daily blogging may be a little ambitious, but this will at least be my goal at this point.

3) I need to get my name out there. I want to make it clear, I realize my blog is only one of about a billion. Probably the only people who see this are friends and family (even then, they would have deserted this about 3 years ago when I stopped regularly posting). I don't have delusions that a big name publisher is going to stumble in here, be wowed with my prose, then quickly sign me to a 5 book contract. I wouldn't be opposed to that happening, but I also am realistic enough to know it will not happen. But if I am able to produce the occasional quality post on this blog, then I do have something to refer to possible clients. Maybe I'll even write something that may be of interest to a site or magazine that would be willing to pay me. Again, I know the hope that someone would pay me for a blog post is a fairly lofty dream, but I think blogging at least will give others an idea of my talent (or on the negative side, my lack of talent). It will also be an area where I can promote my stuff and make others aware of thing that are getting published. I think that is where this blog will be the most helpful for my hopeful career, an area where I can relentlessly pimp my work.

I've now made it clear why I have started blogging again, aka Christopher's current pipe dream, and I'd think it is only fair I catch you up with what I've been doing this last 2 years. Anyone who used to read this blog knows that I adore lists, so as an easy way to catch up, I am going to give you the top ten things that have happened to me while I was absent from the blogverse. I don't really want to rate one thing over the other, instead I am going to do this list in chronological order.

10. Got married to the most beautiful and awesome woman in the entire known and unknown universe. Do you get the feeling that I love Emily? If you do, give yourself a cookie because you are 100% right. I've done many things that I am proud of, but this is definitely the smartest and greatest one of them all.

9. I had one rocking wedding. I know what you are thinking, 'you already mentioned this.' I say to you, no I did not. The above was about making the commitment to Emily. This is about the actual event. For anyone who was at my wedding, they definitely know that it was an EVENT. It had everything from entrance videos for the groom and bride for the wedding ceremony to coming out to Stone Cold theme music for the reception to the most original wedding cake I've seen to a first dance that actually got a standing ovation. It was a show, which completely fits with my personality. I was the centre of attention (along with some lady in a white dress) and I reveled in every moment of it. If you missed this amazing spectacle, I know the entrance videos can be found on YouTube, and the dance video and cake pictures can be seen on Facebook, so be sure to try to check those out.

8. I made a rather crucial 'life changing' decisions that was in direct opposition to what I believed for the previous 30 years of my life. No, I am not now Christine. My worldview is fairly different than it was 10 years ago, but I am proud of the choice that I made. Though I am still adjusting to it, I think it allows for me to be a more open minded and loving person. And yes, I am being very vague. I am sure at some point in the future, I will actually be willing to be way more clear.

7. We made new friends with our neighbours across the street. The sad thing about growing up is that you start to lose contact with old friends due to people moving away or allowing general life things to get in the way. I hope, to be able to maintain my friendships to some degree but also realize I'll never see my friends as often as I once did. This is why I am so happy we've been able to get along with our neighbours. I even have neighbours that I can honestly say our friends. Now, I just have to be able to get them to say it, maybe if I slip them 5 bucks?

6. Spent my holidays for the first time as a married person. It wasn't all that different from spending it as a non-married person in a committed relationship, to be honest. I am hoping we will continue to create our own traditions for each holiday and make them special by finding extra time for each other. This past Christmas morning was the first one ever that was spent in my own house with just my wife and 'boys' (no, I don't have traditional children yet, and wait for a later ranking to find out who these 'boys' are), I have to say that it was quite the special experience that I hope to repeat. There is definitely something great about just having time with your' immediate' family. For all my other family members, I still love spending holidays with you too, so no need to start shedding tears.

5. I got a piece of paper that declared I am a teacher!!!! Now, I just need a job that allows me to prove that piece of paper right. It feels really good to be a University graduate and be able to have the credentials for a career. I took a little longer than the average person (I didn't actually go to University until I was 28) but I am proud of what I have accomplished.


4. I made my glorious return to western Canada. Wow, has it been way too long. I went out to Vancouver in 1986, remember thinking at that young age that I wanted to return and live there. 1986 Christopher would be a little disappointed to know that I still don't live there, and would be even more disappointed to realize that I took this long to go back. But this past summer Emily and I explored parts of Alberta, and we had an excellent time. We went there for her cousin's wedding but also decided to make a 3 week trip out of it. There is still tons of things that we didn't do there and we will have to return again. The whole trip also reminded me how much I love traveling and will have to explore many other amazing places that are scattered throughout this great country and even the rest of this gigantic world.

3. Welcomed Summit into the Spicer family. This past September we got the latest addition to the Spicer family; he may be heavier and furrier than most newborns but we love him just the same. Summit is a Bernese (not Burmese) Mountain Dog and I absolutely adore him. I love that he greets me every night when I come home from work and I love the fact he wants to show me endless amounts of attention. He is most definitely my 'boy.' Plus Crosby, our cat, now has a playmate, though he may see it more as a tormentor.

2. I made the realization that I actually want to be a writer and decided, to try to give it a real shot. I have no clue how long it will take or if it will become a reality, but I am now ready to take on this challenge. I also plan to be very realistic about it, which means not quitting my day job and I'll continue to pursue teaching work. I also realize I have loved writing since I was able to pick up a pencil. I have had dreams of publishing a novel since grade 6. Now, I am not going to suppress those feeling and instead, I will let them explode onto the page for all to read. We will find out soon enough if that is a good thing. If it isn't, I apologize for all the harm that I will soon be committing on all the innocents.

1. I started blogging again. Remember that? You should. It was right now.