February Flying By

The end of the second month of the year is bearing down on us like… well, like time passing always does. The blog has been lying fallow since my year behind and year ahead posts. This is a pretty common state of affairs; I’ve noticed that I tend to get very busy with Life, the Universe and Everything as a new year starts up, and activities like blogging tend to suffer.

So, this is going to be a scattershot, catch-up, State-of-the-Me post.

Three Words

I blogged about my Three Words for 2016 when the year was brand new. I’ve been finding it a challenge since then to keep them in focus, though. While I have been thinking about my health, my happiness and being more organized, specific activity on all those fronts has been spotty. Getting organized is probably the best, or maybe the least bad would be a more honest way to express it; I’ve at least crossed some old business off my “to-do” lists. But I need to re-focus on all three words as my guiding stars. It helps to know that this is a process, and that I still have ten months to use to advance on all those fronts.

Agent Queries

“Previously, on Stephen the Query Letter Slayer…”

When I last checked in, I had sent out nine queries to agents regarding my first novel, COLD IRON BADGE, and received two rejections.

Those are… still the only responses I’ve received, and it’s starting to freak me out a bit. Well, there’s one agent that has a “no response within this timeframe means a rejection” policy, so I think I can safely assume that’s another no, but that still leaves six queries pending.

In fact, in the main this is well within the windows most agents need to review submissions; three months is on the fast end of average, and longer is common. So there’s really no reason to be freaking out. I am anyway.

Say it with me, friends: I will not practice submittomancy, submittomancy is the mind-killer, submittomancy is the little-death that brings total procrasination…

Politics: What Is It Good For?

Well, sometimes really good movies.

I try to refrain from commenting much on US politics, not because I’m not very interested, but because it’s a time sink that I can’t afford, especially since I don’t even get a vote.

But one thing I do enjoy are politically-themed movies. There aren’t many great Canadian movies about our political process, but there are a bunch of American ones. And with primary season in overdrive and the whole world watching with — trust me on this, US friends — our collective jaw on the floor waiting to see what’s going to happen next, I thought that an American politics themed film fest sounded like a fine idea.

Turning, as I do, to social media, I asked for folks to make recommendations, and I got some amazing ones. Here’s the list, including my own suggestions, sorted by number of votes first, then alphabetically:

  • Bob Roberts
  • Wag the Dog
  • Mr. Smith Goes To Washington (idealism makes its first appearance on this list, with the Stewart/Capra original, of course)
  • Bulworth
  • All The King’s Men (the Broderick Crawford original from 1949)
  • The American President
  • Dave
  • The Candidate
  • Election
  • Seven Days In May
  • Advise and Consent
  • All The President’s Men
  • The Best Man
  • Born Yesterday
  • The Day the Earth Stood Still (the person who suggested this called it “a bit of a cheat” but he’s also a professor of film)
  • The Dead Zone
  • Dr. Strangelove
  • Gabriel Over the White House
  • Idiocracy
  • Invasion of the Body Snatchers (“either of the first two versions”)
  • Mad Max: Fury Road (yes, this was a joke; that doesn’t make it a bad idea)
  • The Manchurian Candidate
  • Nashville
  • Primary Colors

Any three of the top ten or twelve suggestions would probably make a heck of a movie night. Now I really need to make this happen!

On the Subject of Movies

And also of happiness, I’ve seen two movies in the theatre so far this year, which means that I’ve already equalled 2015! Star Wars: The Force Awakens and Deadpool were both awesome, too, albeit in rather different ways.

What Next’s For Me?

I am, as always, a work in progress. I want and hope to re-focus on health, happiness and being organized. I want to be on top of things at home and work, exercise, write, see friends, see movies, keep making my life better, and making the lives of the people in my life better too.


Coming up next on the blog: I don’t know, but I’m working on it! Having used this post to blather about myself, and barring any news to share, I’m actively seeking new Breaking In posts for my next posts.

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