This past Monday, city workers came to cut down a cherry tree near our house. It had been there for years.
We found out later that a neighbor had complained that leaves falling in her backyard were a nuisance to clean. The fact that local children (and adults alike) treasured the cherry blossoms each spring seemed to escape her.
And cherry blossom viewing season is just around the corner. What a shame. A waste.
More’s the shame, I only have two pictures of the tree in full bloom.
Fleeting moments, lost in time and memory.
My children wrote a heartfelt letter to the tree, and I taped it as best I could to the stump:
“To the Cherry Tree,
For always showing your cherry blossoms to us until now, thank you.
We miss you, but we’ll never forget that this stump is the stump of a cherry tree.
If this stump ever grows, we want to see cherry blossoms again.”
Stories are made by fools like me…
It’s been six weeks since I decided to take a break from Facebook. Back in mid-January I took a screenshot to show students how to figure out which apps they used the most (Line, by far, in case you’re wondering, followed by YouTube… not surprisingly, since my students are all Japanese).
It was a little shocking to see that I was spending over 8 hours a week on FB on my iPhone. My train commute is about an hour and a half each way, and I go to campus four days a week. So basically I spent 2/3 of my train time looking at FB posts.
Yuck. What a waste of reading time. Continue reading
Yes, yet another award for my science fiction novella, Adam’s Stepsons! This time, in the category of “E-book Science Fiction.”
The official rollout of the 2017 New Apple Awards hasn’t yet started (they announce winners in each category slowly over several weeks), but I felt I should announce it here anyway.
Competing against full-length science fiction novels, that’s not too bad!
I guess I really do need to write more. And more. And MORE.
So much for my New Year’s resolution of writing more regularly on my blog.
I can blame “writer’s block,” which is sometimes just a convenient excuse for general laziness and sometimes stems from a genuine fear of being entirely uncreative and uninnovative.
(My software program tells me that uninnovative is not a real word. Well, now it is. So there.) Continue reading
Is it wrong to post something when nothing’s really been going on?
Well, not exactly nothing nothing. What I mean is, nothing particularly special.
Just work, family, day to day routines.
Influenza. Type B. (Not me, my daughter.)
Preparing materials for class. Doing it again. And again.
Trying to write. Failing epically. Zoning out on YouTubes on Ancient Greece and the Hittites (I’m on a big Hittite kick right now for some reason).
Finally getting to see the new Blade Runner at a friend’s house on Bluray (with kids it’s almost impossible to watch movies I want to see).
Practicing guitar for the first time in nearly a year. Then doing it every day a week straight. For 10 minutes at a time. (Before being told “Daddy, that’s noisy.”)
Yeah. Nothing in particular. Just life, I guess.
This past year was an eventful one, to say the least!
By January, my science fiction novella/novellette Adam’s Stepsons, which I had come back to after a long ( ~ 18 year!) hiatus, had already been rejected by three separate SF magazines. So I made the decision to go the self-publish route.
But before that, I sought out some advice from a fellow self-publisher, Greg Spry, whose debut novel I very much admired (Beyond Cloud Nine). He pointed out several areas to be corrected/emended/improved and although I initially resisted further changes, I soon realized that he was right.
Lesson 1 learned: Always listen to advice about your writing. It helps. Continue reading
A late Christmas surprise!
Adam’s Stepsons won Best Science Fiction in the Fall 2017 NABE (National Association of Book Entrepreneurs) Pinnacle Book Achievement Award contest.
It’s gratifying to see my novella appreciated, but it would be even better to hear from individual readers.
If you have read Adam’s Stepsons, please don’t hesitate to write what you think about it – even if it’s just a single sentence – on Amazon, Goodreads, your own blog, Twitter feed, or Facebook page, anywhere!