Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Coming Up for Air (and a Poem)

Well, for nearly three months now I've been working on a ghostwriting project for a client. It's been an intense time, and hasn't left much room for blogging. But now it's done, and before the next project gets started, I thought I'd update everyone on what's been going on.

So far, no word yet from any publisher or agent on my first novel. That's not all that unusual for first novels, and I have had several "close... but could you send us more stuff; we really like the way you write" responses, which for a writer are golden. Basically, they're an open invitation to query. (Yahoo!) Even better is a project that-yes-I-am-working-on requested by an editor way too long ago... but at the time, all she had seen was one sentence. She's since seen three chapters in rough draft and asked for more... and I've been all-too-slow about finishing it up. But I'm eight chapters in now, and finally cranking along. So another "Yahoo!" on that.

As for the ghostwriting project, that's been a solid case of God's blessing coming along right when I needed it. I can't go into details, but it's been a joy to do and I'm very pleased with the results.

Other tidbits: I was honored to judge a teen writers' contest for the Franklin Public Library Young Adult department here in my hometown. We had a number of entries, and it was hard to choose the winners. But all the young writers did a great job; imagination is alive and well in Tennessee!

Finally, it's National Poetry Month... so here's a poem I'm trying to live by these days:

The Storm
by Howard Shirley

Cast your bread upon the waters;
wait not for the perfect tide.
The faithless boat remains at harbor;
the nobler ship at sea abides.
For when the storm assails the shore,
‘tis hesitation stoves the hull;
and delayed dreams are burst asunder—
never will her hold be full!
Then inward sails the trusting captain
who risked his dreams to Fortune’s storm,
and finds at last his treasure waiting;
his family well, his hearthstone warm.

Thanks for reading!

--- Howard Shirley

©2009 Howard Shirley