Wednesday, July 27, 2011


Dear Readers,
I've written a short (~1300 words) story that I'm considering submitting for publication.  It's a bit of dark fiction called "Black Sand."  That said, if anyone has a few extra minutes on their hands and would like to do some editing/criticizing of my work, I'd gladly take you up on your offer.  Let me know and I'll send you the doc for your perusal and/or red pens.  My big worry is that it utilizes a common trope I've came across in a few different stories, but nevertheless, this was how I envisioned the work from the get-go.  Some more eyes on it wouldn't be unappreciated...

Dear Music Lovers,
I've harped adoration and love for the Milk Carton Kids for several weeks now, and it thrills me to finally have some new music to listen to.  Both of their albums are available for FREE on their website (here), or you can purchase them on itunes if you like.  Truly if you appreciate excellent harmonies and "simple" music, then there's really no reason why you wouldn't like the MCKs.  Heck, since the albums are free, there's really no reason why you shouldn't try them out.  I prefer Retrospect to Prologue, but to each his own.

Dear Amazon,
I just bought a Kindle from you and I am ready for it to arrive at Stewartland.  I debated long and hard before I decided to purchase your ubiquitous device, because I am such a lover of a traditional book's feel.  Nevertheless, when I received a large gift card to use on your site I decided to get an e-reader, since the price was drastically reduced.  And now, even though you're not yet in my possession, I'm giddy with the possibilities.  I didn't know that I could check out e-books from the library until I started researching the Kindle.  (Sure, the Kindle isn't technically supported yet, but it will be soon enough.)

Dear Health Insurance Company and Hospital Billing,
Could you please get on the same page?  It's rather frustrating when you mess up an insurance claim filed months ago, which in turn affects every claim filed after it, and you've still not got it corrected.  I don't mind, truly, but it's just aggravating explaining it to people that want their bills paid.  Thanks!

Dear Monday Night Tennis,
I had a blast Monday night.  The match I played in was probably the most fun I've had in tennis is a long time.  Despite their age (I know one guy was 67 and another 69), they were loads better than many younger players on the courts that night.  Indeed, playing with folks much more skilled than I is humbling, but I yearn for this, because that is the best way to improve my game.  I hope the rest of the summer league proves as much fun as Monday did.

Dear Project,
When our relationship began I was but a fledgling engineer fresh out of academia.  You were intimidating at first.  Baffling, even.  So I approached you hesitantly, like a young lover does his beloved.  I worked on you, polishing you, converting you, making you presentable.  And then I sent you off and the Commonwealth of Kentucky decided that they wanted to do things differently and so I returned to you.  Intimidation wore down, and now all I feel for you is loathing and boredom.  I long to be rid of you and onto brighter pastures, but I know that deep down, finishing you puts me without an imminent project to work on and I'll have to resume reading through Illinois Highway Drainage Design Manuals, for I have another young love blossoming over in the Land of Lincoln that will require my unwavering devotion for a time.  But I am not through with you yet, sweet, wretched Project.  Soon, yes, but not today.

Dear Garden,
You started o so prosperously, but this lack of rain has ruined you, I fear.  The jalapenos and bells are doing great, but that's it, unless I count the weeds that have overtaken the onions.  The green tomatoes have yet to turn red, and the squash is small and fickle.  The herbs are managing, but I nourish them more than I do you, though it isn't your fault.  I don't blame you that it's been so hot these last few weeks and that there's been little rain.  Don't go thinking that.  It's my fault that I don't treat you like you deserve, but let's face it.  You're castes below my family.  Sorry.

Dear Unnamed Independent Author,
I appreciate you contacting me to review your book, even though I declined it.  Still, it gave my heart a great and heavy chuckle to see the letter addressed to Claudio, though I confess, it somewhat worries me, too.  Thanks for the effort, though.  (Note: Read the "Contact" tab to understand why this is funny.)

Sincerely all,


Carl V. said...

I don't do this often, Claudio, but I would be happy to give your story a read-through. I don't do it often mostly because I do not consider myself any great shakes as an editor, but I can give you an honest opinion of what does or does not work for me. I think you are a great guy and would love to see you succeed.

Loved the Letters format. :)

Anonymous said...

dear logan,

the letters were great, I am so glad you've an assistant to take them down for you.

If you've use of another reader I will be happy to read your work and find something worthwhile to say about it. Like Carl, I, too, wish you every include a quick and amicable end to your relationship with the project that doesn't seem to want to let go. good luck.


logankstewart said...

@Carl: Why thank you, friend. I've sent you an email with the story.

@L: Aye, Claudio definitely helps. ;) And I've sent you an email, too.

Thank you both!

Jay Belt said...

I know I haven't touched my blog lately, but I haven't dropped off the face of the earth yet and I would be happy to take a look for you on the short story. You know my email address.

David Wagner said...

I'd like to jump on the "Read-Through Bandwagon", if it's not too late.

Sorry to hear about your garden, Claudio...


Jonboy said...

What's the deal with Kindle getting to "check out" ebooks? I have a kindle, but have yet to take advantage of this feature.

logankstewart said...

@Jay & Dave: I sent you both emails with the story, fyi. No hurry, and thank you!

@Jonboy: Not exactly sure. The library allows you to check out books, but the Kindle isn't supported yet. You can check out e-books, though, and convert the file with Calibre and put that on your kindle, I believe, but I'm not certain. Still, it sounds pretty cool checking out e-books from the library.