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So today is the first day that purchased books will be arriving in the mailboxes of anxious readers. To say I’m nervous and excited would be an understatement.  As of last night, 38 copies were purchased. I only need 139,962 more and I can retire. One book at a time. Despite my misgivings, I am really excited to receive feedback. Being that it’s a collection of 20 different stories, I’m sure that some will be liked while others discarded. I’m interested to see which is which. Although I won’t say at this point, but I do have my favorites, and there are others that I don’t like at all. I was tempted to leave them out of the book, but I was convinced by someone with an objective eye, to leave them in. “Just because you don’t like them, doesn’t mean that someone else won’t.” I heeded her advice and included them. We’ll see how it goes.

Not wanting to rest on my laurels (do I have laurels yet?), I started a new writing project last night.  I decided to write the great American Novel. No one agrees on what the Great American Novel is. No one is sure if it has been written. Some think it’s Huck Finn, while others cite Catcher in the Rye. Everyone has their own opinion. The Great Gatsby was written in Paris, and The Old Man in the Sea takes place in Cuba. Does that disqualify them?  I’ll let the literary experts decide.

For now, I’ve started Kings County. It has no plot, it has no story, it has no defining characters. It only has one paragraph. I wrote it last night as sleep was tapping me on the shoulder.

It was his 29th birthday. He never thought that he would make it this far. No one did. Even his mother told him that she would bury him. It was late, and he was cold and wet. He had been clean for the previous 46 days, but as he had planned in advance, he drank today. All day. There was no way he wasn’t going to ring in the last year of his 20’s without a drink or two. Any reasonable person would agree, only he wasn’t a reasonable person. Very few reasonable people would start off their 29th birthday with a bottle of cheap gin at 10:30 am. His excuse was that he wanted to get as much living out of the day as possible, except no one was asking. He was alone. It was the end of the day, he was cold, he was wet and he was alone.

I’ll keep you updated on it’s progress.  I hope you enjoy the book.

See you on Split Rock Road.

JM