Greetings from the left side of the great Pacific Ocean. I'm back in Japan and have been in full work mode (or panic mode) since my return. I can't wait for my second book, because I'm sure it will be a lot easier than this one. Progress is being made but what I am finding is that doing the writing and the design/layout is filled with a million headaches. The technical headaches, for the moment at least, make it difficult to get into a writing flow. But waiting around for inspiration is something I do not have time for. Sometimes you just have to grind it out. Writing sounds like a creative endeavor, and indeed it is. But it's about as romantic as a root canal treatment — it's more than a bit uncomfortable but it will be worth it in the end. This is what you keep telling yourself.
I appreciate your emails very much (you have no idea). And I am sorry that I can not answer all of them. I want to, but I just have to spend all my time writing, designing, getting permissions (argh!) and emailing those working with me on the book in Japan and the US.
I have never been one who needs a lot of space, but I have always loved having a cozy desk next to a window with a view. Below are two pics from my most recent writing environments. You can see my feet in Hawaii and then here in Osaka. Yes, I often kick my feet up on the desk sans shoes (and socks in my case). As you know, we don't wear shoes inside houses in Japan, a custom I took with me when I lived in the States as well.
Above: Working at small desk (but with a great view) at the hotel in Waikiki Beach. Who could complain?
Above: My home office at night high above Osaka (lights of Kobe in the distance). You can actually see chapter 4 spread out on top of the MacBook Pro (even the publisher has not seen that yet). Got to get all technical aspects ironed out over the weekend.
It's just a book
Most of the time I am consumed with thinking that getting this book complete is the most important thing in the world. Then while consumed with my own problems my eyes meet the weary eyes of a lonely homeless man in the park near my apartment, or I glance at the morning headlines to see it has been another horrible day in Iraq and I am made fully aware that this is just a book and in the whole scheme of things it doesn't matter one bit. Still, a project like a book is something you put so much of yourself in to (your time, your worry, your angst, etc.) that you can't help but hope it can make even the tiniest — absolutely microscopic — dent in the universe. I guess we all hope we can contribute something...