Hurry up and wait

Still waiting on the results of a writing contest I entered.

What if I didn’t at least become a finalist? Keep working hard, reading, attending workshops, etc.

What if I made the cut? Cry tears of joy. And continue doing the above.

I often remind myself Robert Pirsig’s novel, Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance, was rejected by more than 130 publishers before being accepted. It then became a best-seller.

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Characters we create

I’m often asked if there are any characters or places that I’ve created in my mind.


In my mind, there’s an institution of higher learning called the University of South Texas. It’s located near my hometown, Beeville, in the fictional town of Los Patos. Spanish for “The Ducks”, Los Patos is built around a large lake, called Los Patos Lake by early settlers. I’m not sure if the lake is a manmade reservoir or just happens to be a lake created by a river that runs through it. UST’s school colors are royal blue and kelly green, and its mascot, of course, is the Duck.

One student is a 30-year-old man who’s attended school there for years. He’s changed his major several times (English, philosophy, business, psychology, sociology) before finally settling on humanities. Why? He can’t make up his mind what to do for a career. He has dark, thick hair, perpetual five o’clock shadow due to his thick beard. He often wears polo shirts, Bermuda shorts, and sandals. His legs are hairy but muscular, suggesting he ran cross country in high school. He wears glasses, is well-read, and has excellent diction.

Another student is a 24-year-old living in the year 1984. He’s hefty, short dark brown hair, blue eyes, has done theater all through high school and college. Has a BA in speech and a master’s in interpretative speech. His father wanted him to take business classes, but the student refused, believing his destiny is acting. He’s about to head out to Los Angeles to start his acting career. He’s a brilliant actor, well spoken, and he’s absolutely convinced he’ll win an Oscar after two years in the City of Angels. He’s about to learn the hard way just how cutthroat the profession can be.

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