Somewhere in spring 2010, for the first time, writing wasn't fun for me anymore. I had just invested much of my soul in telling the macabre story of a dedicated female mortician, and suddenly, I didn't have anything left. My friend and mentor Cathy Alter told me the obvious then: "Dario, just take a break if you need it."
So that's where I've been. I've done that twice before. This is my third time. If you're reading this at all, I'm going to guess that you actually do care about my writing career, so I'll keep going...
It's been a tough couple months for me, despite my successes. I've got a couple small pieces coming out in various journals soon, etc., but my goal has always been book publication. Unfortunately, nothing less will ever satisfy me. And it seems -- for reasons I'll never understand -- the more I publish, the more I get exposure in the media, the more I make a name for myself and build up my CV, the farther away that dream becomes, which is mystifying.
I suppose I could blame a million different factors -- the economy, the rapidly changing writer's marketplace, my agent, etc. -- but I do need to absorb most of the blame for not meeting my goal yet. Sometimes that's a spiritual process more than anything. I've got the degree and I've got the tools, but how much longer can I keep doing this? How much longer can I seek success in an industry that by all practical accounts is rapidly shrinking and failing horribly? Am I masochist? Do I really believe in what I have to say?
These are the questions I've been asking myself the past few months. And I guess, in reality, all that matters is the last question.
And I'm happy to answer it with, yes, I do.
Thanks again for reading.