What I’ve Been Up To

Today I had to give up my delusion of wearing a tee-shirt and shorts all day.  Yesterday it was a nice sunny day and the weather report said today was going to be in the mid 80’s again, so I carefully selected a tee-shirt I had bought in Hawaii and a nice pair of cargo shorts to wear.

It was 58 degrees outside when I made this decision just after 8:30 a.m. – with the hope that it would soon be 80.

At 11:00 a.m. I put on a sweater.

At 1:30, I finally gave into the reality that it wasn’t going to get much warmer than 72, and deciding that I looked very silly in a sweater and shorts, I admitted I was cold and put on my jeans.


Now, if I’d been doing some physical work, I might have been able to delay the cover up, but since today is a writing day, things were only getting colder.  I was starting to fear that my legs might get a bit of frostbite.  Don’t worry, now that I am fully covered, I can start to feel my toes again.

I was hoping to post a new poem this week, but the one that was in my brain hasn’t quite worked out yet.  Most of my writing time this last week has been focused on editing my book.  This is my first pass at editing based on feedback from others.  I asked two people to help edit and I’ve got both of their mark ups in front of me.  Mostly they point out the same things, but often they see different things that need to be fixed.  The work gets a bit detailed to merge these changes.

Not all the suggested changes are making it in.  There are a few lines in the book that while they look like mistakes, I really meant it that way.  Still, most of the time, it was a mistake and I am happy to get it corrected. There has only been once where my two editors have disagreed and since neither was in the room, I was able to just do whatever I wanted with the line.

Another thing I’ve been doing with my book is to take it to local poetry open mic readings to see how the poems sound out loud.  Last Sunday I attended the San Jose Poetry Festival.  It was an interesting day filled with local poets and poetry readings.  My favorite parts were the workshop on metaphor, the readings of war poetry, and the final open mic session where I read a poem based on this post, Words that Don’t Define Me.

In addition to that open-mic, I’ve also been to open-mics with the Willow Glen Poetry Project. I am finding this kind of reading in public to be useful.  It helps me refine what I am trying to say and does help me gauge how effective a poem is.  And it’s just fun to hear what others are writing.

Writing can be a solitary pursuit so it’s healthy to get out and among fellow writers from time to time.  Even though, as an introvert, it can be emotionally draining to endure the word beyond my keyboard.  I will admit that so far the experience has been good and they haven’t thrown me out of the room – yet.

In other news, I finally got back the results from my blood tests this last week.  I knew my doctor had ordered a lot of tests when the technician drew three vials full, but wow, I got a four page letter detailing all the results.  All good.

Even the PSA test, which continues to be very low and reaffirms the success of my radiation treatments.  If the readings remain low for two more years, I’ll be able to officially say prostate cancer is well and truly in my past.

Now it is a time to start looking more towards the future.  I am starting to put together lists of places to submit my work for publication and want to proudly announce that a very prestigious literary magazine has already rejected my work.

They didn’t say to never submit again, so I am counting that as a positive.

Till next week,

About Andrew Reynolds

Born in California Did the school thing studying electronics, computers, release engineering and literary criticism. I worked in the high tech world doing software release engineering and am now retired. Then I got prostate cancer. Now I am a blogger and work in my wood shop doing scroll saw work and marquetry.
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17 Responses to What I’ve Been Up To

  1. Hi Andrew. Good luck finding a publisher. I am just happy sharing on facebook. Gave up on fame and fortune a long time ago. Thank you for liking my poem Room! Best Wishes. The Foureyed Poet.


    • Andrew says:

      Fame and fortune aren’t my goals, but I do have people who’d like to read it in paper form, so I’ll likely just do a self-publish thing and hope to sell enough to cover costs.


  2. Andrew says:

    Here in North California we say the same thing – dress in layers. Some of us just don’t listen well. 😉


  3. Congrats on the wonderful happenings in your life! One I always say to my children and myself about he weather–layers!


  4. Harlon says:

    I made a similar mistake the other day about t-shirt and shorts weather, although I am pushing it in Ontario – when you hit 60 degrees fahrenheit in April that to me suggests, leave the sweater behind. I am really pleased, Andrew, to here about your test results and like knowing that you are looking towards the future with positivity and hope. Bravo to your hard work and congratulations on your successes. Harlon

    Liked by 1 person

  5. koehlerjoni says:

    I’m so glad your tests results are positive. I think it’s so smart to go to open mic events and read your work aloud. It gives you a different perspective on your own writing. It’s also pretty brave.


  6. LuAnn says:

    Congratulations on the test result Andrew. Open mic sounds interesting. Wish I could be there to see it.


    • Andrew says:

      The open mics have been interesting. Hopefully I’ll get some time next month to do a couple more records of me reading my poems. I’ll post those here.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. jfwknifton says:

    Sunny and cold here in central England. Should reach 72 in perhaps July or August!


  8. Re-congratulations on lab results, but a needing a sweater at 72 degrees?


  9. lifelessons says:

    You can’t hurry summer, Andrew. She’s determined to make her own schedule! https://grieflessons.wordpress.com/2015/04/19/a-life-in-review-hanging-out/


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