Monday, April 30, 2007

vacacióncito de buddy don: cuple daze off

me n miz bd is takin a cuple daze off so i mite not git a chants to blog much till windsdy. we bin havin a reel good time so fer. were jes havin a local vacacióncito on a counta thays a slew of sites up in here we aint never seen, witch seems lack loads of them new yorkers dont see them sites till sumbidy cums to visit, witch thats how we seen the statute of liberty up close.

by the way, we call it a vacacióncito on a counta whenever tony wuz lil he wood go to tennessee ever summer to stay with my folks on a lil vacation, witch we always joked n called it a vacacióncito, witch thay wuz a time neethur he nor his mama could speak inglés. now ye caint git im to speak no español ever since then we call a vacation a vacacióncito, tho this time tiz ackshly a lil vacation de verdad.

hope ye have ye a grate day!

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Sunday, April 29, 2007

pitchers tuck by buddy don: sprang finely sprung

sprang finely sprung agin up in here so everbidy wint to centrull park to reelax after a long week of rushin as fast as they kin go. so on a beeyootifull weekend in centrull park whut they dun wuz ... git movin ...

furst, a feller wuz ridin a unicycle n talkin on his cell fone at the same time. i missed the unicycle ...

thay wuz also swarms of skakers, witch heres one of em ...

corse thay wuz more bikers than innythang, bof amachurs ...

n perfesshnulls ...

lots of folks wuz takin pitchers ...

on the way out we seen these two gurls puttin sumthin on the imagine mosaic at strawberry fields ...

after a walk in the park, nuthin beats yer new york diner ...

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Friday, April 27, 2007

lanks of buddy don: purrfeck worl

after readin this mornins news, i wuz tempted to type out sumthin negativ bout how thangs is a'goin, but in sted, seems better to lank to a lil articull writ by a feller frum the czech republick, witch he has dun splaind whut a purrfeck worl wood be lack bettern i could ever do. on a counta how i caint read czech, i aint shore who the feller is ceptn hes a student a'livin in bayonne new jersey.

he calls his lil articull Perfect World.

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Thursday, April 26, 2007

taggin of buddy don: blogs that make me thank

tuther day i gut tagged by Anne Johnson over at The Gods Are Bored. tiz a meme thats bin a'goin round whar ye putt down five blogs that make ye thank. as miz johnson dun splaind, mos ever blog ye read makes ye thank sumthin. tiz true fer me.

this hole thang gut started over at a blog name of the thinking blog. heres the post that cummenced folks to taggin otherns.

so heres five that cum to mind, tho fack is, i could list minny more of em. since she tagged me, i wont putt anne johnsons blog in even tho tiz one that makes me thank mos everday.
  1. furst off thays Thinking Meat (It's meat! And it thinks!): this feller kin do whut i caint hardly brang myself to do, witch he reads n takes apart lots of them lyin rite wing blogs
  2. nex up is a artist i know name of Tennessee Jed. he claims to be the prophet of the obveeus, but he has opend my eyes minny a time. i lack how he takes us up to verr hi places whar i woodnt go my ownself. i speshly luv the flag of appalachia that he made, witch seems lack folks everwhar is adobtin it.
  3. Appalachian Greens cums nex, witch miz johnson rites over thar sumtimes. nuthern i lack to read offn that site is kayakdave ... n ye should pay tenchun to elvis drinkmo
  4. fourth blog i read a lot n find myself thankin thangs i dont normally thank is eric's blog name of straight white guy. ifn ye aint read his blog, ye orta. thang i lack best bout his ritin is ... his ritin. he truly has his own particular way with wurds.
  5. thays minny a nuther blog i lack, but a nuthern i try to git everday is Tête - à - Tête - à - Tête. smijer is one of the fellers that rites thar n he kin git ye thankin yerself rite into a cunundrum on relijun now n agin. turthern thar i lack a lot is buck on a counta seems lack me n him thanks a lot alike.
so thar ye have it n all them blogs i jes menchuned orta cunsidder thayself tagged on the same meme.

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Wednesday, April 25, 2007

pitchers tuck by buddy don: paintin tompkins square park

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Tuesday, April 24, 2007

pitchers tuck by buddy don: frum the garden

me n miz bd tuck add vantage of sundy to go to the brooklyn botanick garden, witch twuz a purrfeck day fer it. heres a few pitchers frum the trip ... startin with vues of them cherry blossoms, witch they spozedly aint gut a'goin good yet ...

then thay wuz sum purty grape hyacynths ...

them tulips wuz eggsplodin with color lack a bunch of firewurks ...

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Monday, April 23, 2007

weekends of buddy don: gardenin n that bb garden

twuz a beeyootifull weekend up in here with hi temps nigh onto 80 deegrees. i spent saturdy coverin a eevent of new york cares name of hands on new york, witch this is sumthin goodbank wonts thar employees to git involved in n turns into lots of fun. twuz nice spendin the day with tony, witch he is the 27 year ole feller that calls me dad. it tuck nearly 600 pitchers n have dun spent the hole mornin trine to git em all uploaded, witch i gut a ways to go yet. i mite call in a lil late on a counta of it.

after we wuz dun thar, we had lunch with jack n vaclav at odessa, a restrunt i bin a'goin to ever since i cum up to the city area over 20 year ago.

then on sundy me n miz bd replaced our dead monitor (how hard tiz to live without the net in the house! or i reckun we have gut spoilt), unloaded them pitchers to the hard drive, n then went to the brooklyn botanick garden, witch twuz beeyootifull to see sum of them cherry trees in bloom. i will lackly git them pitchers uploaded sos ye kin see em by tomorrows post.

but this mornin has been tuck by uploads, so i aint gut much more to say or show.

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Friday, April 20, 2007

pitchers tuck by buddy don: the po-leece

they call the po-leece of new york city 'new york's finest.' heres a cuple pitchers i tuck of em or thar veehickles tuther day ...

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Thursday, April 19, 2007

pomes of buddy don: Such Emotions

Such Emotions

The students were all shot dead in cold blood,
Their killer acting for motives that none
Could understand completely, though the flood
Of outrage at the madman and his gun

Led to recriminations left and right
And up and down in trying to make sense
Of how anything ever could ignite
A fury so destructive and immense.

Those left behind were shattered and bereft
Of relatives or friends or lovers dear,
As all were taken by the sudden theft.
And yet they do live on, they persevere.

We all are distressed by a tale so sad:
Are such emotions not felt in Bagdhad?

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Wednesday, April 18, 2007

pitchers tuck by buddy don: refleckshuns in a glass eye

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Tuesday, April 17, 2007

pitchers tuck by buddy don: a walk on 42nd st

on saturdy ere the storm cum on us, i tuck a walk along 42nd street with camera at hip as always ...

i wuz walkin west to east, so whenever ye git frum 8th avenue to 6th avenue, ye cum to a park name of bryant square park, whar they gut em a fountain n wifi ...

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Friday, April 13, 2007

pitchers tuck by buddy don: Stienes at East West Yoga Books

yesterdy evenin i had to good fortchun to attend an eevent at East West Books on the topick of Reiki, witch tiz a form of healin that has dun give me a heap of hep in livin with migraines. the eevent wuz The Healing Art of Reiki: Discussion and Book-Sigining with Frans n Bronwen Stiene.

twuz a verr eeclecktick bunch of folk that cum to here the talk n i tuck sum pitchers.

heres bronwen splainin bout the Stienes' long oddussee in search of the truth bout reiki (they gut em a shelf of books they dun writ, but ye kin find out bout all that a'usin google since i aint gut much time this mornin) ...

they shar most all the wurk of thar teachin n publishin bizness. frans duz a lot of the teachin, witch he had this audients in the palm of his hand ...

them Stienes sined em sum books after the publick speakin wuz dun ...

the hole thang wuz organized by the reiki meet up group, witch a lady name of Jackie keeps that thang a'goin. shes the one in the foreground ...

the eevent wuz held at East West Books, witch that quz made possibull by a lady name of Dayna ...

ifn ye ever git the chants to be on the receivin end of the sum reiki, ye orta take it. tiz sublime.

ifn ye wonta larn ye more bout reiki, ye couldnt do much bettern to git ye sum of the books that them Stienes has writ, witch they gut em a website name of The International House of Reiki thats worl famous. heres a pitcher of the two of em together ...

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Thursday, April 12, 2007

pomes of buddy don: The Truth Is

The Truth Is

How grand to see the tyrant's statue fall
From where it towered high above the square,
The dictator pushed out with no recall,
The people dancing, freedom in the air.

With little left to do but to rebuild
The scattered rubble of our shock and awe,
The profitable charts would be fulfilled
And we then with our honor would withdraw.

How could what was so plain turn so complex
As to become a trap from which no plan
Has yet been hatched that anyone projects
Could extricate us from what we began?

The truth is violence leads to no gain,
A truth that Abel taught his brother Cain.

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Wednesday, April 11, 2007

creator of buddy don: More Author

It's me again to give a progress report. I don't think buddy don much likes me usurping his place. For that matter, as I try to write this update, it's all I can do to keep it in standard English. Hillbilly wants to pour out, which shows you just what a habit it's become.

But on to the bad news, which is that the agent I wrote to yesterday is not interested. In fact, that's not the worst possible news since she has never represented anything like Shoot the Devil, and I doubt if there's any profit in it for her to recommend someone else who might not find the work worthy. I'm glad she answered so quickly so I can move on to the next step in the process.

One of the things I plan to do is to attend The Third Annual New York Round Table Writers' Conference this weekend. From all I've read about agents, making contact at a conference is a good way to get a little attention.

I was also very encouraged by some kind comments by readers. It's nice to know some folks believe in my work. IN addition, I got a very nice example of a reader's query letter and novel prospectus, from which I've already learned a lot. I am not certain whether I can mention this person by name, so I'll leave his/her identity secret for the moment.

But I realized something, after so boldly (or stupidly) sharing my struggle to find an agent with buddy don's readers: one thing that kept me going as much as I've gone (1,200 pages so far of the longer novel, life n pinions of buddy don, hillbilly) was having his audience. Knowing that someone was reading kept me wanting to write the next thing (as it does ever single weekday). Maybe sharing this pursuit with you all will help keep me going on this.

I've never been able to convince myself to keep making the next step, largely because any rejection would make me think whatever I'd written was unworthy, leading me to work on the next thing.

But I recently read an amazing novel, The Left Hand of Darkness by Ursula K. Le Guin. If you want to read a "sci-fi" work that is truly great literature, this is one to read. It one both the Hugo and the Nebula Awards. Despite its quality, however, the book had its own nine miles of bad road to travel to get published. If you are ever tempted to despair, read this rejection letter.

I remind myself that every rejection is a sign of progress since the worst rejection is one made by the author in giving up.

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Tuesday, April 10, 2007

creator of buddy don: The Author Is Back

Hello. I'm the author of this mess, the creator of buddy don and everything he makes up. I created "him" so I could practice his dialect well enough to write a novel. It turned into three or more of them, and there is a long way to go before I get to the last chapter, which I've already written.

In the meantime, what has already been written can be broken down into three distinct novels. Last night I had a dream that has led me to try something that has frustrated me all of my life. I'll get to that in a minute. First to the dream.

Unlike many of the dreams I've had since I began taking Depakote for migraines back in October, this one was a good dream, the opposite of a nightmare. In the dream, I was hiking in the Smoky Mountains with Luther Vandross and Tom Waits. Odd company, I know. During the hike, Luther got way ahead of Tom and me.

I took the opportunity to tell him how much The Heart of Saturday Night had meant to me, which led him to ask me why I had never published anything. He said he'd admired my work and considered me a "pure artist" for not marketing my work, but he pointed out that the result was that I'd died without sharing it with the world. There was more to the dream, but when I awoke, I realized I had been dead in the dream and his words rang in my ears (as did the title song of that great album).

So this morning, I decided it was time to write the hardest thing I know of, a query letter. It should be a little easier for me since the agent I'm writing to is a good friend of "miz bd," but for some reason, marketing my work has been the most disagreeable task I know. But I made myself write one and hope that I continue doing so until I find a publisher.

So here, with the identities "redacted" (indicated by square brackets: []) is the query letter I wrote:
Hi [],

I’m []’s husband []. She’s been urging me to write you regarding a novel I’ve written.

Shoot the Devil is the first part of the “life n pinions of buddy don, hillbilly.” It opens in 1970 as Buddy Don Duncan drops out of his east Tennessee high school and runs away to California. His purpose is to avoid repeating his father’s life, but he soon finds himself back in Tennessee, married to the first girl he’d ever kissed, and living the very life he’d hoped to escape. By the novel’s end, he has divorced, survived his own suicide attempt, confronted many of his and his generation’s demons, and begun understanding how hard his task really is.

One of the things that makes this novel different and fun is that it’s rendered entirely in “hillbilly” dialect. This causes the reader to hear the music of the language and duplicates the story-telling methods my elders used when telling stories after dinner in the hills of east Tennessee. A couple of paragraphs will demonstrate best what I mean (and warn you of what you’d be getting into should you be so kind as to read a sample of the novel):
we made it to texarkana by nex mornin. by then id made friens with sum of them other folk on the bus, n one verr frienly feller bought me a cup of coffee. twuz the furst id ever drunk n i wuz so grateful i dint think to ask fer innythang in it. been a'drankin my coffee black ever since.

i calld mama with my last 80 cents n she cried n wunderd why n all, but twuz the way the worl wurks n she knew it deep down inside so she never yellt nor sed inny discurgin wurds tho she did wunder wuther id stole the moon pies, witch funny thang wuz, i wuz tempted to lie bout it, but i cum clean n had to listn to how that mint my bruthers n sisters wood have to do without n bout then my money run out so the conversayshun ended without us a'sayin good bye n all or even i luv you.
As for me, I’ve been writing as a “writer” since I wrote a poem almost by accident at age eleven. That started a life-long habit that has led to only one “success,” assuming you measure success by publication or production: a play I wrote, [], was produced as a one-act comedy twice and as a musical twelve times, including two off-off Broadway productions.

I have experimented with almost every form (poems, stories, plays, screenplays, songs, essays, and forty years of a journal). The one form I seem to stumble over is the query letter. Though I have completed several novels, when it comes time to write a query letter to sell one, I turn to writing the next chapter instead.

I hope you will allow me to send you a larger sample of the novel, whether in printed or electronic form. I understand from [] that this is not the kind of work you normally handle, but I hope you might be able to steer me to an agent who would be willing to take a chance on it.

Thank you for your time,

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Monday, April 09, 2007

pitchers tuck by buddy don: early sprang magnolia blossoms

tuther day me n miz bd wint to the brooklyn botanick garden to see whuther innythang had bloomed. shore a nuff, we found plenty: magnolias, tulips, daffodils, pansies, n sum cherry blossoms. heres a few of the pitchers i tuck ...

furst, a magnolia bud bout to burst ...

n heres whut it looks lack once it gits open ...

most of em aint pink but white ...

corse, ye eggspeck to have ye sum tulips ...

n daffodils ...

n pansies ...

thay wudnt but a cuple cherry trees in blossom, witch thisn wuz the purtiest ...

n in yer scenes frum cummin attrackshuns, heres whut them lilac buds is up to ...

thang i luv most bout sprang is no matter how hopeless ye mite let yerself git to feelin (witch i half to add mitt, i do git to feelin thataway now n agin), sprang reeminds ye that thays importunt n beeyootifull thangs a'goin on.

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Friday, April 06, 2007

pitchers tuck by buddy don: homeless in manhattan

tuther day i wuz wandern the streets of man hattan n shootin mostly frum the hip when i spied a feller that putt me in mind of my bruther eli. he wuz a homeless begger so i ast im could i take his pitcher fer a dollar. he sed why not so i dun it n we talked fer a spell.

turnt out the feller wuz a vizshunairy, witch he had dun had im sum dreams that foretole bout man hattan bein deestroyed in about 18 munths, but twoodnt be frum eethur terrsts nor nukes. twood be frum a natcherull deesaster, probly a earthquake or mayhap a asteroid hittin the place.

i ast im whut wuz he a'gone do? he sed he wuz savin up to move on when the weather gut nice on a counta he kin do his job innywhar.

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