Writer's Journal: May through August

Because of various events over the past few months, I've become HORRENDOUSLY out of date with these journal entries. 6 entire months worth. Ouch.

In an attempt to get back up to date here, I'll do something different for this installment: though I feel awful to do so, I'm abbreviating my format here to present an entire month of updates in a single entry.

I hope this'll be the only time I'm ever reduced to doing this. Please accept my apologies in advance.

**NEW** May 2000

The biggest thing to happen to me during this month: after years of enduring Welfare, I finally landed a job.

It's a contract I'm on, but I'll be employed at least until mid-December of this calendar year. Plus, I'm actually paid a weekly salary, instead of a monthly cheque or some token extra sum as part of a Welfare program.

The job is that of the creation of a website for an organization. Better yet, as part of the job, I'll be learning how to use Macromedia Flash, a multimedia animation application that is in high demand on the workforce. This means that I'll have experience and knowledge that I can hopefully parlay into another job somewhere down the line soon.

I also took a step forward in joining another writing group that could benefit me greatly: on the advice of friends, I've re-joined Compuserve. They've now made their forums accessible for free to users on the Web. I finally rejoined the Comics / Animation Forum that I was on years ago until AOL pushed non-paying people away... I also signed into the Science Fiction Literature Forum, and that's where the new writing group comes in.

The group is called the IMPs, as in IMPatient to get published. From what I've seen of them, the group is very brutal and thorough in their critiques of the stories submitted for review; it's that kind of thorough review that I need to grow as a writer.

On a more tangible level, the new job has allowed me to do something I haven't been able to for a few years now: collect comics again! As a collector for more than 20 years, having to cut out cold turkey was the hardest thing I ever did..

BTW: on the Internet connection situation, I've now become a member of the VIF ISP. The connection seems to be very stable.

**NEW** June 2000

This month was one that saw me writing a lot for my APAs, and getting my first entry into the IMPs Best Opening Contest.

Comicopia will soon be achieving an historic milestone: our next issue in August, #60, will mark our tenth anniversary as a publication. Ten years that have seen me produce a zine for every single issue. Only myself and co-founder / current DM Mike Aragona can claim that distinction. Mind you, we're the only founding members still involved. :)

I got into a bit of a time and creativity slump this month though... after that BOC entry I mentioned above, I didn't submit anything else to the IMPs.

**NEW** July 2000

I wasn't kidding about the historic significance of next month's issue of Comicopia for me; I began my issue 60 zine almost at the beginning of the month. I had a plan to produce a major blow-out contribution, and definitely succeeded in spades, as I'll mention in the August entries.

I've been contributing my column for Fight City on a weekly basis for almost 2 months now. The disheartening thing is that I'm the only person writing for it at the moment. None of the other regular columnists seem to care about contributing anymore. The guy in charge of the site has focused on a new venture in its place, so he hasn't been contributing anything to it either.

I was also saddened to discover that the Writers Loft appears to have gone kaput. I tried to get started again with this month's writing assignments, but my Web browser couldn't find the site. It appears to be gone now.

Near the end of the month, I began a new web venture and writing exercise with a new site: Jazz Life is part of a new phenomenon that is taking the Web world by storm: Blogs. What this stands for is a weBLOG - a site using a technology that allows you to login, post some thoughts or words, then send them to update the site from anywhere. The result: a website guaranteed to have almost daily updated content, with an ease of doing so many times a day if you'd like.

I think this may have contributed to the lack of updates on my part in this Journal; it's far easier to update a Blog than it is to fire up an HTML tool to update a web file offline for upload.

**NEW** August 2000

I debated making this Journal a Blog for a bit... the rapid instant updating was tempting. Thing is, that'd mean changing the whole raison d'être of this section too much. That's not something I wanted to do.

The milestone of my 60th contribution to Comicopia and it's 10th anniversary was this month; I contributed 28 pages. For me, that means both 10 years since I started it, and 10 years I've continued to publish in it without a break.

This was both exhilarating and saddening at the same time. That I created something that's still continuing to this day (as I type this, we just put together issue 62) is fantastic; it's when I think of the friendships made - then lost - in those years, all the history of what has happened in my life since then... well, it's something that can get me a bit maudlin too.

Meanwhile, I made the decision to finally convert my column for FightCity into a Blog. It keeps me from worrying about making a weekly column, and since I have thoughts on different events in wrestling more often than once a week, it made sense.

I've fallen behind a few more months in these updates since I began, so I'll stop here to publish what I have, and post September through November soon.

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Last Updated: Dec 10, 2000

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