The tradition of making New Year’s resolutions dates back 4000 years to the Babylonians.  They believed the way you behaved on the first day of the New Year set the tone for how you would behave for the next 12 months.  I tend not to make New Year’s resolutions because I tend to not stick to them.  Maybe my resolution should be to make some New Year’s reolutions and stick to them!  We’ll see.


Anyway, if you’re inclined to make New Year’s resolutions, but don’t know where to start, try using your Sun Sign as a primer.  For me that would be –

Leo (July 22 – August 22):

  1. Serious? Yep.  Lately, anyway.  So first, resolve to enjoy life again.
  2. Aim for romance, romance, and more romance, from June through September.
  3. Choose one of those playmates and have a real, live relationship by November.
  4. Turn your most-loved hobby into a part-time income, at least.
  5. Make it the way you earn your daily bread by the time you hang the mistletoe.


After finishing my contract last Friday, I’ve been taking a bit of chill time and getting myself ready for the New Year. I’ve been mulling over my goals for 2007, but haven’t come up with a definitive list yet. The gates of the New Year stand ready to open.  I’m nearly ready. 

Ruth and I went out for a meal Friday night with Mike and Kirsty to a restaurant called Zizzi. Mike is one of these people I find really easy to talk to. I haven’t seen him for over a year and we just picked up talking as if it yesterday was the last time we met.

I am sitting here writing this passage and I am thinking as a writer I haven’t been very observant or I am not very observant of external details. I mean we spent a whole evening with Mike and Kirsty and I am having a hard time remembering what the heck we said. I didn’t capture any of the finer details that could possibly find their way into my writing. My first thought is to say that nothing interesting happened, that it was just a routine night out. But then I think well what about the details? What was Mike wearing? How does Kirsty look now that she has lost 2 stone? What was the waiter like? How about the little blonde waitress, what was she like? And how about the barmaid at the Bowling Green, how would I describe her? What about the people in the Bowling Green, what were they like? What about the older blonde sitting in the back corner, why did she catch my eye? You see I was about to write this passage as I write most of my passages through the reflective lens of my inner musings. There is time and place for the reflective lens, but from the writers I enjoy reading, it’s their ability to capture the finer details that excites me. Just yesterday I read the opening pages of John Updike’s Rabbit Run and man the way he describes the pick up game of basketball in that opening scene is awesome. That is what I am after!

Conclusion: Work on the details!!

Thank God It’s Friday. I’ve been engrossed entirely in this contract that I am even beginning to think like an employee again and pray for Fridays to return! I dreamt about buying guns last night. In the dream, I owned a rifle. The police came to my house to make sure I had a permit for it. I did. I ended up befriending the cop and he took me down to the police station to help me buy another rifle. In the end, my new cop friend let me pick any hand gun I wanted from a shelf full of handguns. I chose the Barretta 9mm.

I forgot to set my alarm but luckily I woke up at 0430.

I felt like reading this morning instead of writing and so I started on a Jack Kerouac portrait by Barry Miles.

I have been wondering this week about how I spend my time. I feel right up against time. This short story I am working on is taking me forever because I spend about 40 minutes on it each morning. And yes I could write some gibberish and call it a story but I want to go beyond that and write fiction that matters and so even for this short story I am working hard to get it right. But the reason I am feeling up against time is that basically from 0615 until 1900 my day is consumed with the training contract I am on. That leaves very little time to practice meditation, workout, write, work on my business, and spend time with my family. Precious little time is left to do those things. I don’t want to create time trap thinking though. So I have been gravitating towards a philosophy of live each day as you live each day. To think about the future makes me anxious and frustrated.

I was just thinking that reading is important to me. What is different about last week to this week is that last week I read everyday. This week I haven’t read at all. My thinking seems random and chaotic this week. Reading this morning has seemed to have calmed my thinking and inspired this long passage. Read. Think. Write. Perhaps that is the formula.

Walter Brown Gibson wrote 282 The Shadow novels. He wrote on average two 60,000 word novels a month sometimes writing a novel in 4 days! He had 3 typewriters and would have 3 novels on the go at one time. He’d write on one typewriter until the ideas for that story wound down and then he would move to the next typewriter and work on that story.

As he said: To meet The Shadow schedule I had to hit 5,000 words or more per day. I geared for hat pace and found that instead of being worn out by 5,000 words I was just reaching my peak. I made 10,000 words my goal and found I could reach each. Some stories I wrote in four days each, starting early Monday morning, finishing late Thursday night…by living, thinking, even dreaming the story in one continued process, ideas came faster and faster.

A relatively chilled day at work. The portrait on Jack Kerouc has reawakened my interest in jazz. Jack was huge fan of jazz. I used to be a big fan of jazz in my early 20’s. When I converted my music collection to CDs, I never bothered to convert my jazz selection. I went up in the attic and found my old jazz collection on tape. I am listening to Pieces of a Dream and man I must say I have been missing out on my jazz. I think the flame is rekindled.

I want to start a group like the New Prometheans that Jack belonged to when he was at university. They met to discuss literature, politics and philosophy. They met for the betterment of mankind. A literary round table composed of folks who have literary pretensions…