Magical Realism, Writing, Fiction, Politics, Haiku, Books

jueves, abril 21, 2011

This Is The One Thousandth Post On The Dream Antilles

This is quite a milestone. This is the one thousandth post at the Dream Antilles.

The DA began in August, 2005, as a way to promote my 2005 novel, The Dream Antilles. It did that for a while, but it quickly morphed into something else entirely: a quirky, eccentric, idiosyncratic collection of posts about books, writers, writing, politics, Latin America, law, culture, music and all kinds of other things. I haven’t worried much about whether what I was writing was on topic. Or whether it fit in the DA. Or whether there were any readers. If I had something to say, I wrote. What I’ve been concerned with most is telling these stories. And then putting them up.

Because the commenting on the DA is en Espanol, and because it is moderated, it’s not easy just to read and drop a quick a comment. That would be too simple. You have to really want to comment at the DA. And there are several incentives to getting frustrated and dropping the idea. Especially if the reader doesn’t have a basic command of Romance Languages 101. This wasn’t intended. It’s just how it developed. Strangely, obstructing readers from commenting has become important to the DA. I can’t really tell whether anybody is reading the DA or whether the pieces are liked. Very few people challenge or compliment my views. I don’t get the kind of feedback that I imagine blogs were originally supposed to provide. There’s not a lot of interaction among me and the readers, if any. The truth is that I keep writing the DA because I’m concerned with telling these stories. It’s important for me to write them. Yes, I hope they are being read. I’d love it if they were being appreciated. But, no, that’s not the reason for my doing it. I’d do it anyway. Even if I were one of just a few readers.

I’ve tried to keep the DA pure. The DA has never been about making money. I’ve never tried to monetize (a transitive (?) verb I have doubts about). And I haven’t tried to become famous. Nor have I tried to remain anonymous, or mysterious. I’ve just showed up and written. And I haven’t really tried to promote the DA. Yes, I’ve cross posted pieces. That was because for them I wanted a wider audience. If readers then came to the DA to find what else I was writing, I was happy with that. If the DA has grown, it has done so organically. Because readers by hook or by crook found it and perhaps returned to it.

There are no secrets in the DA about who is writing it. People who care about this can find out all about me if they want to. If anything, my opinions in the DA make what I think an open book. If anybody cares what I think, s/he can easily find out. As a friend said recently, “I’m out about my beliefs and my thinking.” This, as it turns out, is a recipe for my personal comfort. And for the freedom to write whatever I choose. I like the smoothness of that. It’s pure.

So I am celebrating this milestone. To be frank, I didn’t realize I was approaching it until last week. And then I was astonished. How, I wondered, could I write all of those pieces? How could I have such an outpouring? Isn’t that incredible? I thought. The muse, the creative muse, the dream muse have all been fabulously kind to me. Bless them for not taking extended vacations and for helping me with this. And for not teasing me too much. And for not trying unnecessarily to teach me about humility. I am so grateful.

How did I do it? I wrote prophetically on the very first day at the DA. In response to the question, “You have to dig a hole to China. Where do you start?” I wrote, “At the beginning.” And that's what I did. I wrote. And I didn't look in the rear view mirror.

When the celebration is complete, I will continue to write the DA.

Thank you for joining me on this journey. I look forward to whatever’s next.

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