Friday, February 29, 2008

Conversations with Calliope

JOE: Good afternoon Calliope.
CALLIOPE: Good afternoon Joe. I thought you might not show up today.
JOE: Please have more faith. I got involved in various activities this morning and am finally getting to you.
CALLIOPE: What have you been up to?
JOE: I prepared and mailed out a copy of The Pastor's Inferno to a friend who agreed to do a review.
CALLIOPE: Professional or ordinary reader.
JOE: Professional. She teaches comparative religion.
CALLIOPE: What else have you been up to?
JOE: I assembled my materials for an art course I am starting on Monday.
JOE: I guess I didn't tell you. A friend invited me to take a watercolor landscape painting course with her. I thought it would be fun since I have never had any formal art training but enjoy dabbling with painting and drawing. I'm looking forward to it.
CALLIOPE: Any work on Marital Property?
JOE: Yes. I made a list of characteristics of both major characters concentrating on parts of their personalities would clash. These will come into play in the crisis. I am working on a situation which will bring out the worst in each to see how they handle it.
CALLIOPE: Is it ready to write?
JOE: Almost. I still have to work out some details, but expect to have it written this weekend. I'll let you know how it's coming tomorrow.

(Storm clouds in the Rocky Mountains)

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Conversations with Calliope

JOE: Good morning Calliope.
CALLIOPE: Good morning Joe. How are you this morning?
JOE: Well, but I don't feel too ambitious. I am having a hard time getting started this morning.
CALLIOPE: Any particular reason?
JOE: None that I can think of. I guess I am just in a lazy mood.
CALLIOPE: What do you think you can find to motivate you?
JOE: Let me look at the writing quotes I found yesterday. Hmmm...Here's something by Isaac Bashevis Singer, "Every creator painfully experiences the chasm between his inner vision and its ultimate expression. The chasm is never completely bridged. We all have the conviction, perhaps illusory, that we have much more to say than appears on the paper."
CALLIOPE: How does that apply to how you are feeling right now?
JOE: I want to get on with my novel, Marital Property, but am at a crossroads.
CALLIOPE: Tell me about it.
JOE: I am nearing the end of the story. Although my couple has made good progress, I feel there is a need for a crisis to test how far they have come and I am having difficulty thinking of one.
CALLIOPE: Where do you think you might look?
JOE: I started this project by defining the traits of my characters. Part of what I discovered was each of their weaknesses and blind spots. I think a good crisis would plunge both of them into their worst fears about themselves and each other.
CALLIOPE: Excellent. Does that give you some ideas?
JOE: Yes. I will go back to my initial character descriptions and find out what kind of a conflict would hit both of them between the eyes. I'd better get going while I have the momentum.

(Rocky Mountains- Colorado)

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Conversations with Calliope

JOE: Good morning Calliope.
CALLIOPE: Good morning Joe. How are you today?
JOE: I feel like I am getting back to my old self. I had a pretty productive day yesterday.
CALLIOPE: Tell me about it.
JOE: After our discussion, I got to work on my plans for developing benefits to list under my book listings in my publicity efforts.
CALLIOPE: Do you want to share them?
JOE: Not just yet. I would like to refine them a bit and then we'll talk.
CALLIOPE: OK. What else?
JOE: I found some pretty good quotes about writing but not specifically on what I am writing about.
CALLIOPE: Can you share one?
JOE: Sure. Anais Nin wrote, "The role of a writer is not to say what we all can say, but what we are unable to say."
CALLIOPE: Interesting. What does it mean to you?
JOE: There are plenty of things everyone can express but some things most people don't know how to express. It is the writer's job to make sure these things get said.
CALLIOPE: How do you think that applies to your writing?
JOE: In The Pastor's Inferno, I delve into the mind of an abusive priest, a place few people would dare to go.
CALLIOPE: Good example. Are you ready to get going for today.
JOE: I am. I will have limited time since I will be out of town this afternoon, but I will do what I can this morning.

(Wall sculpture- Santillana, Spain)

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Conversations with Calliope

JOE: Good morning Calliope.
CALLIOPE:Good morning Joe. How are you today?
JOE: Well, than you. My cold is hanging on but is close to banishment.
CALLIOPE: Did you get much done yesterday?
JOE: Alas. I had other commitments which kept me from concentrating on creative pursuits.
CALLIOPE: Such as?
JOE: A mental health meeting, dentist appointment and exercise.
CALLIOPE: I see. Did you work on your writing at all?
JOE: I did wander around MySpace trying to figure out how I could use it to my advantage.
CALLIOPE: What did you discover?
JOE: Not too much. It still seems like an electronic playground. I will have to explore a bit more to see if it can be useful. I wonder how other writers use it.
CALLIOPE: Me too. Maybe some of them will favor us with their opinions. What do you plan to do today?
JOE: I write up an agenda for today already. I plan to work this morning on benefits of my books and finding famous quotes to support my writings. This afternoon I will get back to work on Marital Property.
CALLIOPE: You sound like you are still struggling with working consistently.
JOE: I guess I am. Not having regular phone service has thrown me off somewhat. But I will keep working at it and try to regain my balance.
(Warming up in San Juan)

Monday, February 25, 2008

Conversations with Calliope

JOE: Good morning Calliope.
CALLIOPE: Good morning Joe. Glad to see you are up and at 'em early again.
JOE: I feel pretty well recovered from my cold and am getting my energy back. I also joined Weight Watchers for men on-line last week and have already lost 8 pounds. Maybe there is still hope.
CALLIOPE: Congratulations, keep it up. What's going on in the writing world?
JOE: I spent some time this weekend reviewing what I have found so far on Internet marketing. I also established some priorities.
CALLIOPE: What are your top three?
JOE: First is continuing this blog to track my progress with writing and keep those who are interested in my adventure informed.
CALLIOPE: And second?
JOE: Second is to develop a list of benefits from reading my books to include in my marketing efforts. I realize this is an approach best suited to non-fiction, but I don't see why it wouldn't work for fiction as well.
CALLIOPE: Sounds like it is worth a try. And number three?
JOE: I woke up very early yesterday morning with the idea of celebrity quotes. I don't mean soliciting them from current celebrities. What I have in mind is quoting famous people in my publicity, using what they have (or had) to say to lend credence to my writing. I have never heard of this idea, but thought I might try it. Did you plant this idea in my head?
JOE: I thought so. I think it's brilliant or at least a try. I'm excited about getting to work. Talk with you tomorrow.
(Windjammer buffet- Adventure of the Seas)

Saturday, February 23, 2008

Conversations with Calliope

JOE: Good afternoon Calliope.
CALLIOPE: Good afternoon Joe. I was wondering if you would show up today.
JOE: Oh, ye of little faith. I am still dragging around from the cold I picked up on vacation. I'm still not quite back to normal.
CALLIOPE: So what have you been up to?
JOE: I did some more running around yesterday to finalize my phone business. I won't have a regular phone for a couple weeks and will have to make do with my new cell phone.
CALLIOPE: What about incoming calls to your regular phone?
JOE: Fortunately I can retrieve them from the computer or through my cell phone. However, it's a pain.
CALLIOPE: Any work on your writing?
JOE: No actual writing, but some progress on marketing.
JOE: Social sites were recommended in a book I read recently. Instead of working on an overall marketing plan as I had intended, I set up a site and a My Space group for psychological fiction. Then I did some surfing and discovered My Space seems to be a playground for teens and young adults. I haven't yet figured out how I could use it, but I will do some more work on it.
CALLIOPE: What are your plans for the weekend?
JOE: I will follow my course intended for yesterday. I plan to review the marketing information I have and try to set a comprehensive plan for the near future. I hope I do better than I did yesterday.
CALLIOPE: I hope so too.
JOE: Off to work. Talk with you on Monday.

(Batavia Recorder Group)

Friday, February 22, 2008

Conversations with Calliope

JOE: Good morning Calliope.
CALLIOPE: Good morning Joe. Everything back in working order?
JOE: I wish. My phone is still on the blink. I sent an e-mail about my problem and got back suggestions which were not only confusing but impossible to do.
CALLIOPE: So now what?
JOE: I think I might talk with Time Warner to see about their service.
CALLIOPE: Do what you have to. What's happening on the writing front?
JOE: Very little. I spent yesterday scrambling around trying to fix the phone problem. It's hard for me to concentrate when I have such annoyances.
CALLIOPE: Have you made any progress with the marketing?
JOE: I have been reading and getting some ideas. I woke up early this morning realizing that scattered ideas won't get me anywhere.
CALLIOPE: So what's your plan?
JOE: That's just it. I don't have one. I think today I should review what I have found so far and then work on a well thought out approach for marketing rather than going off into a variety of directions.

CALLIOPE: Can anyone help?
JOE: I do have a forum of writers at BookLocker but have not approached it yet. I think this might be a good resource. I had better get on it. Talk with you tomorrow.

(Fuerte San Geronimo- San Juan)

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Conversations with Calliope

JOE: Good afternoon Calliope.
CALLIOPE: Good afternoon, Joe, and late afternoon at that.
JOE: I know, I know. Yesterday my computer and internet phone service went off suddenly. I thought it was my modem and was waiting for a service call from Road Runner. Then I discovered it was a problem with my router and my computer still worked. I decided to get a cell phone in the mean time so I could answer important calls. I have been trying to contact Vonage to see whether I can get a new router.
CALLIOPE: Sounds technical. Is it all settled?
JOE: No. I'm still waiting for a response from Vonage. Hopefully it will be all settled fairly soon and I can get back to work.
CALLIOPE: Are you back to working on Marital Property?
JOE: Fortunately, yes. I completed the last of the bedroom scenes with my couple yesterday, at least for the moment. So their love is no longer unrequited.
CALLIOPE: Now what.
JOE: I am looking toward the end of the book. I still think they need one last crisis to prove they can work together to overcome it. I will give it some thought as see what I can come up with.

(Peacock- San Juan- Puerto Rico)

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Conversations with Calliope

JOE: Good afternoon Calliope.
CALLIOPE: Good afternoon Joe. Where have you been all morning?
JOE: I've been here but dragging around a little with a cold. I am trying to get back into a pattern but am having a little trouble doing it after a week in the Caribbean.
CALLIOPE: I'm trying to feel sorry for you.
JOE: Well, keep trying. I'm not asking for sympathy, just saying I am not functioning on all cylinders yet.
CALLIOPE: Did you get anything done this morning?
JOE: Not on my writing. I had some medical matters to attend to and don't have much energy.
CALLIOPE: What about this afternoon?
JOE: I have an appointment at 1:30 but hope to get some writing done before the afternoon is over. I am hoping to get back to my normal schedule by tomorrow.
CALLIOPE: You said you had some ideas about online marketing. I was wondering what they are.
JOE: One is to maximize use of my website. I read that duplicate content makes search engines ignore one site. I checked n Google and found that both sites containing this blog are listed. I guess there must be enough differences for it not to be a conflict.
CALLIOPE: So what's next?
JOE: I would like to pursue social sites, becoming more active in writing related forums and explore links with other websites for starters.
CALLIOPE: All new territory for me.
JOE: For me as well. I guess we will learn together.

(Adventure of the Seas- pool deck)

Monday, February 18, 2008

Conversations with Calliope

JOE: Good afternoon, Calliope.
CALLIOPE: Good afternoon, Joe. How was the Caribbean?
JOE: It was everything Carol and I expected: weather in the mid-eighties, a great time on the Adventure of the Seas and delightful company.
CALLIOPE: Did you meet people on the cruise?
JOE: A few, but we spent most of our time with three other couples who went with us.
CALLIOPE: Was it all fun or did you learn anything?
JOE: You sound a little jealous. I always learn something. I finished reading a book about online marketing and got some good tips about where to start. I also visited a slavery museum in Curacao.
CALLIOPE: I didn't know there was such a thing.
JOE: There is. It portrayed the history of the slavery movement from the beginning through the civil rights movement.
CALLIOPE: What was most moving?
JOE: Two things. One was being in a replica of a hold section of a slave ship where forty to fifty people spent two months crowded together like sardines in a can. The other was child sized manacles. Seeing them brought to life for me the reality of this cruelty.
CALLIOPE: Did the experience do anything to help with your writing?
JOE: I think so. It reinforced my determination to continue using my writing as a means to help people think about their lives and their impact on others.
(Sculpture- Slavery Museum- Curacao)

Friday, February 08, 2008

Conversations with Calliope

JOE: Good morning Calliope.
CALLIOPE: Good morning Joe. How was the eulogy received?
JOE: Very well. I received many compliments on it.
CALLIOPE: What do you think made it successful?
JOE: Listening and watching. I payed attention to what I saw of Aunt Lucille and her interactions with everyone around her and also listened to what each of her children had to say about her.
CALLIOPE: Sounds like a good approach. Did the funeral take up the whole day?
JOE: Between that and the burial as well as reception at Leroy Country Club. I was exhausted by the end of it after getting up at 4:00 AM to finish the eulogy.
CALLIOPE: What about your poor couple in Marital Property?
JOE: I hope to help them find some satisfaction in the bedroom today before I leave.
CALLIOPE: Leave? For where?
JOE: I will be cruising in the Caribbean for a week, leaving quite early tomorrow morning for San Juan.
CALLIOPE: Do you plan to work on your writing while you are gone?
JOE: Not specifically. I do plan to take a new book on internet marketing and will do some pleasure reading as well as talk to others about writing. I will also take some business cards with information about The Pastor's Inferno. I will also look for some new pictures for my blog. Mainly I plan to work on relaxing.
CALLIOPE: Have a great time. See you when you get back.
JOE: I'll bee back in touch when I return. Aloha.

(Adventure of the Seas- Curacao)

Thursday, February 07, 2008

Conversations with Calliope

Good morning Calliope. I can't stay to chat but I did want to leave with you the eulogy I wrote for Aunt Lucille's funeral this morning. I will talk with you tomorrow.

Eulogy- Lucille Rider
Lucille loved to read everything from Edgar Allen Poe to Chicken Soup for the Soul. As I woke up this morning, I thought of a line from Lord Byron’s poem, The Maid of Athens, “Zoe mou sas agapo- My life I love you.” I think this line summarizes how Lucille approached each new day.
Several years ago I was in the market for a better car and noticed that Lucille had her Buick for sale. I looked into it, thinking that a car owned by a woman in her 80’s would most likely have relatively few miles on it. I was surprised to find that she had managed to travel 84000 miles in a few years without taking any long trips. I ended up buying her car, named it after her, and began to hope that it would have half the stamina she did.
I have written about her in my columns, marveling at her energy. My first visit to her house was shortly before Christmas. Carol insisted I see her Aunt Lucille’s basement. There, amid her husband Jake’s clock collection, were more presents than I imagined Santa Claus having in his workshop. She had been chasing around Western New York collecting presents for months. I suppose that is what accounted for at least some of the miles on her car.
I have not known Lucille nearly as long as most of you have. Being with Carol the past eleven years, Aunt Lucille has become a major part of my life. When Carol and I were first going together, I remember Lucille bringing a plate of her rolls to the door at Christmas time. She returned year after year, rolls in hand, until her recent decline. I felt privileged to be able to bake breads and bring them to her in return. She always talked about not being able to taste anything, but somehow she still found each of my breads delicious.
I learned that Lucille acted as Carol’s mother despite having seven children of her own. I have met all of Lucille’s children and grandchildren in the intervening years and have been impressed by how her family revolved around her especially in the last few months as she has moved from being the rock of the family to the one who needed care.
She has lived her life in the sight of God, going to visit Him in Church when she was able. When she was no longer able to make it to church, Father Mike, Gerry or Liz brought her Communion.
If God did not express His will clearly, Lucille always had her own ideas about what should be done. I don’t recall her ever being lost for an opinion on any topic whatsoever. She could tell you how a restaurant should fill its wine glasses as well as how people should conduct their lives.
Despite her strong opinions, I don’t ever recall hearing her berate anyone or even speak to anyone unkindly. She could muster the troops to get someone moving, but often did so with humor. Still, she always took the time to listen to others.
She was a woman of various talents, many of which I only knew about from Carol such as her chair caning, reupholstery, interior painting, wallpapering, and sponge painting. Gerry Diskin recalls that she could change the look of a kitchen in a single day with a roll of contact paper. Anto especially remembers her unparalleled rolls and her once devising a rope handle for a suitcase, stirring up images of the Clampetts.
She also used the same ingenuity to be sure she was dressed and groomed to perfection.
In recent months her physical stamina faded, but not her spirit. She was sharp as a tack until a few days before she died, and even then had moments of lucidity and was able to insert a wry comment into the conversation.
She was close to leaving us a couple weeks ago. She told us she saw George and Jake preparing a card table for euchre but they weren’t quite ready for her. Another time she saw them again but she wasn’t quite ready herself. When she finally was ready, she told us clearly.
Driving around Leroy lately, I missed having her to visit as she held court in her living room or at the kitchen table. There is a void in my life as I know there must be in all of yours. I have been struggling to put my finger on just what she brought all of us.
Jon was her first child and lived only a few days. She was told she would not be able to have any other children. From heaven, Jon has watched her beat the odds and go on to have seven more children.
Her family shared with me some of their favorite memories. Linda remembers her mother’s unconditional love and her faith which was deeply ingrained in her soul.
Sandy especially remembers taking her mother to a 2006 New Year’s Eve Party at one of her friends’ houses and realizing how much can change about life in one year. She remembers her mother hugging and kissing everyone as she always did when anyone came to visit. She recalls her mother living for each moment. She lived unselfishly and made each person she was with feel special. She was gracious to the end, concerned and worried about everyone else rather than herself even in her last moments.
Mary Margaret remembers as a child seeing her mother never afraid to do anything and teaching her many skills by having her join in with whatever project occupied her at the moment. She especially remembers her mother’s unconditional love for everyone as well as her constant forgiveness whenever it was called for. She accepted everyone and her door was always open to visitors. She especially provided a safe and accepting place for kids to visit. Her husband Jim recalls her as very caring. She always had a nice greeting and the inevitable kiss for everyone walking in her door. He also recalls her never being shy about expressing her opinion which always made him think when it was directed toward him.
Patty recalls her mother’s directness, even about her own death with the words, “Let’s get the show on the road.” She had two caring husbands whom she had recently seen waiting for her in heaven. Keeping the family together was very important to her and she did her best to make sure it stayed cohesive.
Yvonne recalls some of the lighter moments in her mother’s final months. She remembers a time when she was learning to change her mother’s oxygen. As she wrestled with the cylinder, it let out a poof of air startling Anto’s cat. As she continued to struggle with it, it let out a larger poof of air, sending the cat scrambling for cover.
Another time, she was trying to figure out how to wash her mother’s hair over a basin. Yvonne was not aware that a cup would have made it easier and was ready to dump the whole bucket of water over her mother’s head, like Gatorade on a Super Bowl coach.
Bob especially remembers his mother’s consistent generosity which reached a fever pitch as each Christmas approached.
Mike could not find a way to put his memories into words. However he did display his characteristic grin when his mother was mentioned.
Amy recalls her grandmother always welcoming everyone with open arms to her home. Even when people in her family disappointed her or she disagreed with what they did, she still loved them unconditionally.
Catholic tradition holds that angels are bodiless spirits who act as messengers from God to relay to us what we need to know. I am sure there are also angels in the flesh. I have been privileged to meet several of them as they passed through my life. Lucille was one of them. Many times her message was one of love and acceptance, but sometimes one of caution when needed, always direct and to the point. I know I will miss her love and concern. Lucille, thank you for your life. We will always love you.
I would like to end with my favorite part of the Latin funeral service. It begins with the words “In paradisum deducant te angeli. (May the angels lead you into paradise.)”

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Conversations with Calliope

JOE: Good morning Calliope.
CALLIOPE: Good morning Joe. How are you today?
JOE: Quite well, thank you. My back seems to be working normally. It's amazing how one little disorder can change your outlook.
CALLIOPE: Did it do that to you?
JOE: I can't say it changed my life outlook, but it did hold me back some.
CALLIOPE: Glad you're past that. What did you do yesterday?
JOE: I worked on publicity materials, refining my business card, announcements, news releases and brochure to coordinate with my web sites.
CALLIOPE: It sounds like you are making progress. Any writing?
JOE: Denis and Cynthia are back in the bedroom in Marital Property and from all accounts are enjoying every minute.
CALLIOPE: Did you finish the chapter?
JOE: No. I was a little pressed for time. Like my protagonists, I am enjoying this scene as well.
CALLIOPE: Well, I won't bother you about the intimate details. I hope you all have fun. What's on the docket for today?
JOE: First I have some refinements to add to Aunt Lucille's eulogy. I may not get some of the details I want until the wake this afternoon. I will probably have to come back here to touch up the eulogy tomorrow morning before the funeral.
CALLIOPE: Sounds rather last minute.
JOE: It's not in my control. Several people still have not gotten back to me but I should see them at the wake. I'll send you a copy of the eulogy tomorrow morning if I have time. I'd better get going.

(Shipboard Sunset- St. Lucia)

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Conversations with Calliope

JOE: Good morning Calliope.
CALLIOPE: Good morning Joe. How are you today?
JOE: Better than I was yesterday. I visited a chiropractor who put my back in shape again so I can sit up straight and sleep at night.
CALLIOPE: Sounds good to me. What did you work on yesterday?
JOE: I developed a business card for The Pastor's Inferno containing its basic nformation. I thought it might be easier to carry around than announcements, especially on my trip next week.
CALLIOPE: Your trip?
JOE: I thought I told you. Carol and I are going on a cruise to the Southern Caribbean, our usual Valentine's Day jaunt to get away from the cold for a while. We are going with three other couples and looking forward to it.
CALLIOPE: Sounds great. How is the eulogy coming?
JOE: It's just about finished. I am still waiting to hear from a few of Aunt Lucille's children which might be last minute. I left them messages and they may or may not call. If not, I should see them at the funeral home tomorrow night.
CALLIOPE: Could I see the eulogy?
JOE: Of course. I will post it Thursday morning. I think it only fair that the family see it first.
CALLIOPE: I agree. Any progress with our poor couple in Marital Property?
JOE: You will be relieved to know that their passion has been requited. They were. Both seemed to enjoy themselves and each other immensely and are looking forward to their next practice session in the bedroom.
CALLIOPE: So am I. What's up for today?
JOE: I have some final work to do on the business card. I also plan to do some work on marketing this morning. This afternoon I will see if my couple is ready for another bedroom practice session. Talk with you tomorrow.
(Sunset- Dunkirk, NY)

Monday, February 04, 2008

Conversations with Calliope

JOE: Good morning Calliope.
CALLIOPE: Good morning Joe. How are you this morning.
JOE: Better than the last few days. I did something to my back and haven't been sleeping well lately.
CALLIOPE: What are you doing about it?
JOE: I was hoping rest would be enough. But I keep aggravating it. I plan to call a chiropractor today.
CALLIOPE: Sounds like a good idea. What's been going on besides that?
JOE: Aunt Lucille finally died yesterday morning. She seemed close to death a few times but was finally ready to go and said, "Let's get the show on the road."
CALLIOPE: She was quite a character from what you have written about her in the past.
JOE: You're right. I will miss her as will Carol. But we have fine memories of our times with her. One of her last requests was that I do her eulogy.
CALLIOPE: How's it coming?
JOE: Just about finished. We have a cruise planned starting Saturday and were in quite a quandary about what to do if she lingered beyond then. I didn't want to disappoint her and Carol wanted to be there for her cousins. As it turns out, everything fell into place.
CALLIOPE: Sounds like quite a week so far. Any work on writing?
JOE: I sent out a few more news releases on Saturday and also worked yesterday on a presentation in lieu of a book reading and signing. I didn't get to work on Marital Property. My couple remains in bed unrequited. I hope to give them some relief today and don't see why I can't finish their bedroom scene.
CALLIOPE: I am sure they will be grateful.
JOE: I imagine so. Still, I think they might be enjoying the antici---pation. I guess I better get going. Talk with you tomorrow.

(Wedding arch- Portland, Maine)

Saturday, February 02, 2008

Conversations with Calliope

JOE: Good afternoon Calliope.
CALLIOPE: Good afternoon Joe. I was beginning to think I wouldn't hear from you today.
JOE: Never fear. Actually I have been quite busy with things I have let go all week to work on marketing. I won't bore you with the details.
CALLIOPE: Okay. What progress have you made on marketing?
JOE: I am busy finding contacts for news releases at the moment. I am making good progress, but finding detailed accurate contact information is not always so easy. I did search the library yesterday for newspaper contacts and magazine contacts. I also discovered Gale's, a wealth of information when I find the time.
CALLIOPE: You sound quite busy. Any progress with Marital Property?
JOE: Yes. I worked on the bedroom chapter with my couple. I thought I had reached the end of the chapter but they were having too much fun and wanted to continue.
CALLIOPE: So did you leave them hanging, so to speak.
JOE: I did. It doesn't look like I will have to write today. But I am sure they will both reach full satisfaction on Monday. It's not quite so frustrating to have to wait when it fictional. I hope they won't hold it against me.
CALLIOPE: I hope so too. What's next?
JOE: More work on Marital Property next week as well as more marketing efforts.
CALLIOPE: Do you hve a plan?
JOE: Yes. First was to get my website where I wanted it. I am happy for the moment with it. Now I need to look for reviews and am scouring the country for possible sources.
CALLIOPE: Are you doing any local PR work?
JOE: I am developing a program which I think I will call Writing from the Soul. I plan to talk about the different kinds of writing I have done, give examples from my writings, and engage my audience in discussion of their writing or aspirations instead of a traditional signing. Of course I will have my books for sale as well. I guess I better get going. See you on Monday.

(Window at Charlotte Lighthouse- Rochester, NY)

Friday, February 01, 2008

Conversations with Calliope

JOE: Good morning Calliope.
CALLIOPE: Good morning Joe. Nice to see you up and about at this hour.
JOE: I had to get to the office to check on a few things before Carol left for work. Anyway, I am here.
CALLIOPE: What did you get done yesterday.
JOE: I worked on my website. In my study of marketing, I found that search engines detest duplicate content on websites. I had the same readings from my books on both websites. Rather than be eschewed, I made the necessary connections to and I think they are both working well but so far have not gotten much feedback.
CALLIOPE: Do you think your sites are the best they can be?
JOE: If you mean do I think they are as effective as they can be, it is only a matter of time and experience. I discovered in my reading that how you set up a site is a matter of trial and error depending on who ends up at your site. All you can do is try something to see if it works and then experiment once in a while to see if another approach works better. I wonder if all advertising and marketing is so idiosyncratic.
CALLIOPE: I don't know. But I do like your use of that nice Greek word at the end of your last sentence.
JOE: So I guess I'm on my own for the time being.
CALLIOPE: I guess so. What else have you been up to?
JOE: I sent out a couple news releases and plan to work on more today. I also discovered that one calls them news releases rather than press releases to honor the sensibilities of those not engaged in print publishing.
CALLIOPE: Its amazing what you learn when you start studying. What about writing?
JOE: I did start a new chapter but didn't have time to finish it.
CALLIOPE: What is your couple up to?
JOE: Creative sex. I left them in the bedroom so I better get back to them before they become too frustrated. Talk to you tomorrow.
(Nineteenth century bedroom- Genesee Country Village, Mumford, NY)