I returned from vacation to more than three hundred emails (mostly junk), dozens of voicemail messages, and a sizable stack of mail. I missed none of it. I could easily live without these "modern" connections and "conveniences" and would much prefer sitting on the porch talking face-to-face or reading a good book instead of scrolling through "facebook". Someday (in retirement?) I'm going to chuck it all in the river and live in a secluded cabin surrounded by barbed wire. It's not Becky's cup-of-tea, but she can move to Florida and bake.
In spite of these Luddite tendencies, however, I did return to find a number of writing opportunities and correspondences waiting for me. I was only gone, actually, for ten days, but I had at least that many editorial responses in my "in box". Most were rejections ("Sorry, Mr. Alleycat, but you are still a loser and we're surprised you have the audacity to submit this tripe!" or "Sorry . . . and I wish I could remember your name . . . but writers like you give me the willies and I really wish you'd stop sending me material so I have to pretend I care.").
In spite of these downturns, however, I did have a few uppers. For example, Upper Room accepted a few of my devotions (and listen, I'll actually get paid for these and can some day buy a milkshake) and I had several messages from producers and hosts inviting me to talk on radio, AND I got another nod on a poem which will likely be published in 2012.
Okay, it's not much, but it's always fun to hear a "yes" instead of a "no." I hear "no" from my wife all the time, and that's why I turn to writing . . . to find affirmation and a reason for living. Writing offers me the ability to dream of romance, and write about it, and pretend that such things could actually happen to an old man like me. Through writing, I can dress up my wife, take her out on a date, romance her . . . all without her participation.
That's why I write a poem to Becky every week. I continue to hold out the hope that she might read one of these poems some day and say, "Yes."
Until then, I'm still catching up on the workload.