“CKR” Diary Post No. 45
Wednesday, October 07, 2009
Been skimming over earlier Diary entries today. Damn this project’s taking a long time! (Wonder how many times I’ve written that?) Life has changed so much. My daughter was only 12 when I started CKR (she’s almost 16 now). My son was nearly 20, living down the road from home, and blissfully ignorant of his future in the U.S. Army. Scott hadn’t read anything by David McCullough (or anyone else) yet. We lived in a townhouse and had an entirely different set of friends. IB was finished and sold, but hadn’t been printed. I had a writers’ group.
Three Daytona 500s have been run, beginning with the race that started it all. I got so tired of worrying about changing the book every time there was a 500 that I finally made one up, fictitious winner and all. Disney’s Pleasure Island has closed, too. I set several scenes there that I would be very sad to lose, so, instead of moving venues, I edited narrative and switched the story from present day to recent past. Countless references (gas prices, politics) became irrelevant and had to be tweaked. The longer it takes to finish, the more the world moves on.
Kid Rock’s released two albums since February 2006. I’ve seen him in concert three times. He’s changed managers, launched a clothing line, and is getting ready to debut his own brand of beer. (Yes, beer – Bad Ass, to be specific.) I was hoping he might be interested in dipping his wick into the literary market, too, by endorsing the book I’ve been working on for the past three and a half fucking years. Thought he’d even get a little excited about making a film. Turns out he’s got better things to do. According to his manager, anyway. After leaving several messages, Tom finally got through this past Monday. The response wasn’t encouraging.
I suppose I shouldn’t have expected anything different. The number of people trying to lay their hands on Kid Rock can’t be a small one. And, of all those phone calls and emails and text messages and MySpace/Facebook/Twitter updates a business manager has to wade through, what percentage of the requests do you think come from desperate fans, stalkers, and snake oil salesmen? How many get any real attention?
I’m very grateful to Tom for bullying his way in on my behalf. The answer wasn’t the one I wanted, but it was an answer. Since I’d always planned on proceeding with or without the endorsement of the man who inspired all this anxiety, I submitted the manuscript to its first prospective publisher this morning. Horror stories abound for this part of the process. Waiting for a reply can take months, sometimes years, and what comes back is almost always an impersonal form letter (sometimes a skewed, faded copy of one) that graciously says NO. Then you submit the manuscript somewhere else and wait some more.
The road to literary success is no different than any other road: littered with obstacles and overflowing with people who shouldn’t be there. I’m glad Tom’s in my corner and that, like me, he’s not giving up. He continues to search for a screenwriter who’ll adapt the book for film, and his encounter with Kid Rock’s manager left him convinced the only way to get the man’s attention is to get to “the man,” himself. I’m leaving that hurdle up to Tom…well, and anyone else in a position to help. If that happens to be you, I’ll be eternally grateful.
However, while I wait for fame and fortune to descend on their own, I figured I’d start work on my third novel, DeSAIN. Just in case. No doubt I’ll mention its progress on the blog and elsewhere periodically, but I will NOT be creating another diary, so don’t ask (or worry). It’s time-consuming. I also expect the process of writing DeSAIN to unfold basically the same way it did with the first two: amid hurricanes and tragedy, celebrations and joy. As Scott continually reminds me, it’s what we call Life. It won’t stop for love or money or poetry, so I can’t expect it to stop for the crazy shit I come up with.
NOVEMBER - DECEMBER 2009
No entries were posted these months
(to be continued...)