Monday, March 2, 2009

A Hail Mary Pass

Things look bleak today -- world-wide, economically-speaking -- so you know, why not try religion? I’m working from the public library, without a cup of coffee or bowl of soup in sight. This is penance. Some guy just finished coughing up a lower intestine at the next table. Prior to, the librarian shushed him, which I thought was rude, seeing as the intestine was only half way there.

Life must have been like this right before the Russian Revolution, though without palm trees and Kinkos.

I’m flipping through the 2008 Writers Market to see what kind of low-life pandering I might try my hand at. I’ve published in crap journals before; it wouldn’t be sinking to where this woman had never sunk before. At 35, I channeled a 60-year old man with triple bypass to get published in a health journal. So trust me, any ethics arguments you throw my way, I’ll throw them back ‘cause they’re just too small.

So many titles, so much time. I’ll tell you three that are totally out: “Fur, Fish, and Game,” “Conception,” and “Skin Disorders Monthly .”

Good God. (Remember this; we have a theme.)

Parenting Magazine has possibilities. I’m not a parent, but I’ve known parents. I had parents for heaven’s sakes. (please note: second nod to the Almighty.)

Then there’s the romance and dating trade. A pretty easy do, I would guess, though a few hits on the head with a hammer might speed up the writing process. Lord love us. (Third nod.)

And speaking of trades, trade journals pay pretty damn well. Take a look at “Bathroom Yearbook," an annual journal covering all monuments marble and ceramic, and “Bedtimes.” The latter gives a stern warning that all submissions must be from retail bedding professionals. Hmmm, I’ll let that one go. It’s my religious day.

So, throwing a dart at the Writer Market when the librarian isn’t looking, I hit Organic Gardening. They pay well, and they accept approximate stabs at some sort of vegetable amusement.

And, actually, what is gardening but digging a few holes, sticking some roots in the ground, and hoping for the best. I may not really understand a triple bypass, but I do know what amounts to a hill of beans. For Christ sake.


  1. But can you write an article about an organic hill of beans? Actually, you should come to the IWOSC satellite meeting sometime. It is the second Friday of the month at the Coffee Gallery in Altadena. It goes from about 8:30 to 10:00, but you can leave when you need to. It has lovely people, and a lot of freelancers that could probably head you some very good directions.

  2. What? Fur, Fish, and Game isn't religious enough for you?

    Life in the Convent is the subhead.

    You bedevil me.

  3. Russian Revolution - My grandmother and grandfather went to that. But they paid a guy to let them sneak out early. In 1970, when students burned down the Bank of America in Isla Vista, my grandmother thought the Russian Revolution was back and she took all her money and put it in a safe deposit box. Who could blame her?

    Petrea - I went to Second City around 1983. Jan Hooks, who later made it onto SNL, was part of the show that night. Cool that you were part of that. You have my respect. I suck at improv.

  4. Lord willing.

    My word is carbar, and that's where I'm going.

  5. You're too good for the lot of 'em.

    I have a friend who wrote for with an Irish woman's byline -- lots of really girlie articles. He was a chainsmoking barfly guy in real life.

    The weirdest thing I ever wrote was an encyclopedic dermatology website for a group of cosmetic dermatologists starting up their own skin care line. It's amazing what a good pitch and a lot of research can do.

    And then, there's always porn... Isn't that an economy-proof industry?

    My word: wiffies.

  6. Laurie: Now we know where the expression "My word!" came from!

  7. Too good for Skin Disorder Monthly? Ah Laurie, you make me blush.

  8. Isn't Retail Bedding Professional the new PC term for hooker?

  9. Be glad that Skin Disorder is only a monthly, and not a weekly, or God forbid, a daily.

  10. Good Lord - 30 minutes ago there were 4 comments. Now, after coffee, there are 8. If my computations are correct, in a few hours there will be more.

    Organic Gardening? - Go for it. Unless "Banana Tree Quarterly" has a better rate.

    Speaking of which - I can hardly believe it - my word is LASTROT.

  11. KB, this is a seriously funny post. However, did you get a picture or 2?? This is a post that just octo be in pictures.

    Sounds like that library is not a place 2 go if I want my coffee & a bite 2 eat.

    Well, I hope this is the final word on this subject, if not the final comment!

  12. Hell yes, you've got that towering banana plant you can write about. And your lasagna salad beds, or whatever those things are. And Albert the fertilizer maven.

    Also some funny commentors (ers?) most days. Today they come in the form of Wayne and -K- especially.

    Do you think I could sell John's glowing nuclear sink shot to Bathroom Yearbook?

  13. You are so behind the times: There is no Kinko's any more.

    I have to second Laurie: there are tremendous creative writing possibilities in porn.

  14. Here she comes out of left field: indeed, Diachondra silver falls.

    But I thought you had an olive thumb?

  15. The artist equivalent.. Painting faux finishes. The depths of misery? painting faux finishes for the on/off switch plates that go into the marble countertops in McMansions developments.

    The pit of hell...even those jobs are drying up

    (keeping within the religious theme)

  16. If you have to resort to Conception, my daughters would be a darn good resources. They have the concept down pat. And how about "Geriatric Dalliances" ? Lord have mercy, I'd buy a copy of that one.

  17. We still have Kinko's here in B'ham but of course we are about two years behind the rest of the country so maybe they didn't get the memo yet.

  18. To god damn many gods around. And what are they doing? Nothing except causing wars!

    Mid-Town G

  19. Gardening is much more than digging a few holes. It feeds the soul (mine, anyway). Are you feeling hungry?

  20. Go for it. The only thing I've NOT written for money is porn. But if this recession shit gets any worse, I'm not ruling it out. I reckon I could do root vegetable porn with some knowledge and conviction.

  21. Geesh. Sometimes my "friend feed" for blog updates hiccups and I miss a post.

    Next IWOSC meeting is Friday the 13th. Donnie, our moderator, makes a decent living writing freelance for trade mags.

    I do love that "retail bedding professional" eumphemism.