Thursday, August 23, 2001


Was out from work sick yesterday. Spent most of the day sleeping, but in the afternoon, after I'd slept myself into wakefulness for a few hours, I slotted a few long lost Zip disks I found in an as-yet-not-unpacked box the other day. One of them, as I'd expected, held my old (old old) creative writing efforts from years ago, as passed from machine to machine and hard disk to hard disk; some bore dates as early as 1991, which was the year I bought my first IBM PC after years of TRS-80, Commodore 64 and Macintosh work. Junior year at the University of Richmond.

It was an educational few hours. Some of the pieces were predictably painful to accept as mine, but many others (more than I expected) showed a surprising amount of promise. Some of the poetry, especially, surprised me with how sophisticated I used to be in terms of meter and rhyme use. I can't make either work to save my skin, lately, but atrophy's to be expected after eight years or more of neglect, particularly since I was a wet-behind-the-ears English Lit major back then with Milton and Shakespeare on the brain.

There were some letters in there too, some thorny, some warm & fuzzy, many unfinished; all good to bring back to the forefront of the old noggin. Some perspective on a failed-but-recently-reinstated friendship here, some memories of newlywed life there; recollections and old emotions galore.

(Funny how something as ephemeral as digital data has proven more enduring than any of my paper records. I've probably got some of the hardcopy replies I received to those letters somewhere, but for now they're buried and presumed lost.)

It was also good to remind myself that I was on my way to becoming a decent writer way back in 1994-ish; I produced a respectable amount of material, unfocused and self-indulgent though most of it was. There were even some good story ideas germinating back then, some of which might not even now be considered overdone by the SF establishment.

Ah well, feeling better today, and back in the saddle.


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