Rendered Fat Content


Circle of
Hendrick van Cleve III:
Landscape (c. 1525-1589)

"A writer's work never gets done."

Publishing serves as the terminating step in a long series of creations. It works like beatification in that it represents a work's entry into that much-vaunted "state of bliss," whereby it might prove worthy of public veneration. More importantly, it moves out of what I might best describe as a persistent state of sin, for each unpublished work represents some PastSins as yet unforgiven. Writers feel haunted by their collected works which have yet to find publishers. These lay around like haphazardly set aside toys, interrupted before completing their mission. Many of those pieces probably could have never really qualified as more than practice, but they remain undead, never entirely forgotten.

The flotsam surrounding every working writer sometimes (like often) seems overwhelming.
They've left bodies buried and unburied everywhere. I have manuscripts I cannot recall without finding the slips of paper upon which I once noted their existence. They persist like PastSins, unfinished business, teetering on some edge of completeness without my having entirely finished them. They fill to overflowing a psychic in-basket which poorly contains a lot of If I Ever Get Around To It Work. Work I know for certain I should have already done, but haven't.

Age has not bent my back. That backlog has done it, for it holds the power to weigh me down without really even being around. I created some of those drafts in applications that no longer exist, their product untranslatable and therefore never finishable. Others contain former sloth and idleness, my lazy sense that I didn't have to fully complete a piece before moving on. In my career so far, I've abandoned far, far more than I've ever nurtured through to full completion. The bulk of my catalog stands in waiting. It also stands in weighting there, a burden perhaps beyond bearing. I bear it daily, continually. I am its indentured servant.

This Publishing endeavor promises to relieve some of this back pressure. I am finally diligently working and focused on cleaning up my library of PastSins. I understand that mine's a fool's mission, but I seemed to have specialized in Fool's Mission. It was my professional calling and should not be excluded from any form of engagement I intend to enjoy, for there's something quite delightful about engaging in effort that cannot possibly ever be completed. It's a dance with the infinite, or something very nearly like that. It might have no discernable end, but it contains no end of enjoyment, too. I'm resolving long-standing mysteries, completing former impossibilities, and generally renewing my body of work. Notice how a writer's work was never referred to as a body of rest? No rest awaits any writer upon Publication, just the resolution of a few of his more prominent PastSins. I've stockpiled enough PastSins to last me at least forever. A writer's work never gets done. Neither does a publisher's.

©2023 by David A. Schmaltz - all rights reserved

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