I’ve done it. After five painstaking months, I’ve completed the third draft of “Thank God for Cancer” (formerly My Cancer Story). If you’re a consistent reader of mine, you’ve likely noticed my absence from the blog. Now that I’m a Writer’s PA (first on Ratched, now on 9-1-1), finding free time is hard, especially when I was knee-deep into the hardest draft of any piece of written work I’ve attempted in my life.
2019 will be my biggest year yet. I’ve outlined a few goals to ensure this, and most of them revolve around writing.
EDIT: Completed one goal already (see below).
Here we go:
“Set a goal. Accomplish it. Set another goal.”
Chapter 91: “Reacquainted Passion”
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With that essay, I handily won the Brian K. Welch scholarship and with it, a renewed desire to reacquaint myself with my passion. Around the same time, a wonderful employee at NESCom informed me of an annual poem collective called “Crosscut,” which was accepting submissions. I hadn’t been focused on poems much lately, but I knew that it would be a welcomed reprieve from my Photoshop and video projects.
I wrote four for the book and believe it or not, two were accepted! I was overjoyed with their literal acceptance of my work! To me, it was a validation that my entire career wasn’t a fluke! Three of the poems had rhymed, and for the fourth, I played with the notion of revision, forcing myself NOT to rhyme. Here are the four I had submitted (the latter two of which, were chosen):
Chapter 63: “Out With the Old”
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Over the next few months, I felt that Tonya had been acting differently. I couldn’t explain why and when I asked her if she was okay, she would be quick to give me the answer I was looking for. “Yeah, I’m fine.” I was confused for I knew she wasn’t fine.
Meanwhile – back up north – MBNA was preparing to close. In June of 2005, Bank of America bought the credit card giant, causing the entire branch to fear the worst; that they would be out of their jobs. The company reassured them that they wouldn’t do such a thing and our immediate managers surmised that since Bank of America didn’t have an outward telemarketing arm that we would be safe in our profession.
Clearly, it was just a matter of time (and assessment) until the branch was shut down. In fact, not only did the company buyer shut some of the offices, but all of them. The Fort Kent center was consistently one of the top branches in the country, but even stellar numbers couldn’t save us.
You know amidst the ever-flowing changes of life, some things take a backseat. And while these changes can be inexplicably altering, they too can prohibit one from properly expressing his or her self in their typical way.
If you haven’t heard already, I’ve been working on a television show. Many of my readers are people I know and so to the dozens of you, this comes as no surprise. But to those of you who may only know me from this blog, I have been neglecting you… and myself. Continue reading
Chapter 57: “Up In Flames”
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I had been basking in the memories of my life in real-time for the entirety of the fourteen months since treatment had ended. It was an immense feeling that I had hoped would rub off on others in the world. I was more present in interactions with my friends and loved ones than ever before and I went out of my way to make plans with them– and FOLLOWED THROUGH with said plans. I had found a cheat code in the video game of life dubbed “Extra Life.”
Cancer did all of this? Huh, maybe there’s something to near-death from which we could learn.
Luckily, many people who had experienced this ordeal with me had also found similar rejuvenation in his or her relationships. Some of my Dad’s family made more time for one another and tore open the lines of communication from a once drought-ridden trickle to a steady, flowing stream. My Mom’s side chose to spend more time with my recently widowed Memére (but that wasn’t because of my experience). Yes, the worst of times can bring out the best in people. But can that nobility and camaraderie persist?