My lovely wife Sarah has been working long and hard to bring a hostel to Richmond, and the fruits of her labor are starting to pay off. Michael Paul Williams did an extremely nice piece in the Times-Dispatch. Check it out: Planned Hostel Would Bring World to Richmond.
This has been a wonderful year for me, though not at all in the way I expected or hoped for, but that’s the way with good years, isn’t it? Â I had just finished one novel with promising prospects, and was into another I had high hopes for. Â The marketplace shrugged at both. Â I shrugged back.
Then I literally was called back to teaching fiction writing in February, receiving a call a few weeks into the semester asking if I would take over an advanced fiction writing class for an ailing colleague. Â I’m not sure how effective I was, but I had a great time and met some wonderful young writers. Â That led to a summer workshop and two in the fall, and another this spring. Â I want to thank my students for showing me a wonderful time. Â The experience has energized my short fiction as well. Â I don’t know the publication date yet, but I just sold a story to Lightspeed Magazine which was particularly gratifying because it’s a new, ambitious piece that represents the kind of work I most want to do now. Â Besides, Lightspeed is totally cool.
I’m looking forward to attending ICFA this year again in March and returning to Readercon in July. Â I’ve been asked about other events, but nothing is confirmed yet. Â Now that I have finally licked the muscle pain that plagued me for a couple of years, I can travel againâ€”not to mention sit comfortably for a panel discussion.
About that pain. Â I had made the rounds of physical therapists, acupuncturists, spinal injections, etc., and though it would get better for a while, it would always come roaring back. Â Finally, my new cardiologist asked if I’d tried going off statins. Â I was taking Crestor at the time. Â I had, but had had the idea nixed by other medical professionals. Â When I quit, the results were dramatic. Â Within a few weeks of being off the statins, my pain steadily retreated. Â As I have stated elsewhere, I also changed my diet in response to my heart ailments instead of dosing it and I feel infinitely better.
Another reason this has been a great year is yoga. Â I have always hated any kind of exercise classes. Â It was only through Sarah’s persistent suggestion (some would say nagging) that I gave it a try. Â (Thank you, Sarah). Â When I found a really good instructor, Viktoriya Kosta, I quickly became hooked. Â Mind and body both are better for it. Â Namaste, Viktoriya.
I’ve started another novelâ€”I can’t help myselfâ€”and I have a half-dozen stories in various stages of completion. Â For the first time in years, there are no doctor’s appointments looming in my future. Â Sarah, Ethel, and I plan on lots of walks to the river. Â Life is good on Maplewood. Â I like 2013 already.