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It is fall, and snow is creeping down the mountains.

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Fresh snow on Bear Mountain

I have once again skipped a summer, opting instead for 7-day-a-week fish biz work in Alaska and consequently a winter with enough money and time to do whatever the hell I want.

Usually that want is constant travel and stimulation. No – always, including now, that urge is pushing at the back of my brain, threatening to roar out in a fiery fit of spontaneous plane ticket buying. This year, however, I have decided to semi structure my time off.

Wait. Whaaa?! Lest ye worry my first and only winter of full-time real-world employment broke me down into a briefcase-carrying pantsuit warrior, I am still planning travel this winter. I will include my familiar haunts – N. Idaho, Boise, Seattle, Portland, San Francisco and some place tropical; I’m thinking Panama and Colombia. But for now, my feet are planted spongily on the muskeg.

The trouble with writing, you see, is that it’s like fishing. It’s not always catching like it’s not always selling. Much of the trouble with writers not being succesful while alive owes to us being too busy questing after inspiration to actually take a piece, polish a pitch and sell the bastard – day after day. I’m learning that editors don’t really give an ass if you’re brilliant or mediocore. They want to know you’re going to be there to consistently fill pages.

I am learning that I’m not so great at hitting deadlines when I’m on the road – even if they’re self-imposed. My focus on squeezing as much possible enjoyment and learning out of every destination means that immediate reflection feels like cheating. I can’t status-n-twitter-update the very latest because I haven’t gleaned any meaning. I will always use my travel experiences to shape my writing, and I won’t stop pursuing either one. For now, though, I’m not attempting to mix the two professionally.

I will sit here at this computer as never before at this time of year. I will write daily and on a schedule. I will sell stories to a weekly out of Juneau (stay tuned for links). I will watch autumn turn to winter from a little cabin in the Alaska rainforest. I will work on a biography (non-auto) and another book about which I will share more at some point. I will maybe end up writing the same sentence in repitition on my typewriter until my psychosis leads me to terrorize everyone I know.

Most importantly, I will miss you all for now, but I will see you soon.