So, it’s 2014 and so far. I had sex, a decent bagel, coffee and I played a fairy and sorceress card game with my daughter… I also finished editing notes on a side project, the whole family’s in the living room, writing, drawing, creating (while listening to Bjork).
So far it’s a good representation of what my life has become in the past year. We are FAR from my hochelaga/factory years (man, 2005-2006 was almost ten years ago!) I can honestly say that I love my life very much. I’m madly in love with my spouse, my daughter is 4 and a half which means we’re DEFINITELY done with all the horrible crap that comes with young, young kids (diapers, puke, picking up food from the floor, having to teach her basic human decency, you don’t sleep nearly enough, the family’s always broke, the stress is high. It might sound horrible, but I did not enjoy being a dad THAT much when Kaelie was young but MAN am I having fun now!
We (well, Mary) has an arts studio where she (and I, sometimes) get to actually work (We used to have our “studio” at home in the freaking bedroom, it’s really not a good place to work : the cats destroy everything you do, you lose your shit all the time, the artworks get mixed up with the laundry, you go to sleep in plaster dust and the smell of glue or plastic…) So I’M WAAAY happy about that (plus it sounds really cool when you get to say “Oh! Yeah! I’d have to drop by the studio to get that.” Might be a little bit vain, I like it anyways.
I guess the low point of 2013 was my professional life. It’s stalling on some fronts, but slowly growing on other. I still have my warehouse job but I’m really not that committed to it. I had hoped to become a boss this year, I worked for it, I’d say I’ve proven my worth and I still didn’t get it. (they switched the “nature” of the job I wanted so that it was purely an administrative position now, which is not something I wanted.) So I’m stuck in the basement warehouse for now, but you know what, that’s good because I’ve accepted that I don’t really want to be a boss anyways, what I am, is an artist.
And 2013 has not been bad on that front either. I’ve become close friends with some of the nicest, most interesting people I’ve ever met (I’m talking about you Neda and Sterling). I’ve reunited with an old, lost friend I missed more than I imagined (that’s you, Kenny) and we have written some of the best, aggressive music I have even been involved with.
As far as writing goes, I’ve published my best work so far (A Teenage Suicide) and although sales aren’t there at all, I can safely say it was both emotionally challenging and satisfying to write. I’ve also published a poetry collection that is doing better than expected. I’ve learned how to do covers pretty well this last year and so, the cover for “Northern Gothic” has cost me a grand total of 3$ to produce, so even though I’ve only sold a few copies (ebooks) from it, it’s my first officially profitable book.
I’ve also published my first translation. The Factory Line is now available in French as “La Shop.”
As far as sales go, it’s been a slow year to start with, but I’ve had a stronger December than I expected. I’m learning a lot of things as I publish more and more works. My early works are getting some attention now which landed me twice in bestselling categories (if only for a day) for both Satire and Noir. As it happens, I write stuff that is hard to sell, but I’m satisfied emotionally and intellectually by it, so profits are really a secondary thing to me.
In other artistic news, I’ve started painting a few weeks ago. While my technique still requires some work, I’m getting the hang of it and most of all, I really, really enjoy it.
So that was 2013.
And now, moving on to 2014. I’m setting the bar pretty high for 2014.
1- This Spring I’ll publish my sixth book (fourth novel), “Grand Trunk and Shearer” and while I love A Teenage Suicide, Grand Trunk and Shearer will be my “Mystic River.” I like it that much.
2- I expect to translate A Teenage Suicide in French for this summer. The title will be “L’été d’un suicide” and I have one professor form L’Assomption Cegep (the town where most of the story takes part) who I met at Expozine, he said he wanted a copy of the french translation, saying that if he liked it, he might even teach it to his students. We’ll see where that goes.
3- I want to be at the MAC with my paintings. If not this year, I’m going to apply to the next Biennale de Montréal. I know, it’s probably arrogant to even thing about it, but it’s in the plans.
4 – I’ve found a better gym where I can train away from he douchebags and preppies that plagued the place where I was training. I’m not that social and I certainly don’t like these guys, so I’m happy about that. I also want to get back to martial arts and they teach Tai-Chi there as well so I’m really happy about that (and it fits with my work/family schedule which is UNBELIEVABLE).
5 – And, perhaps the biggest news, is that this year, I’ll begin my transition from novels fo films. I’ve been working on two separate projects, one of which would be plan A and the other one plan B, but the options are there.
I can’t go into details out of respect for the people involved (no confirmations have been set yet) but I’ve talked it over with Mary and we have plans for me to take an unpaid leave sometime in the next year to work on that. I enjoy writing novels, but the truth is that I’ve watched at least one movie every day for as long as I can remember and I want to get to that. So if Yahweh doesn’t hate me too much, I’ve planned out some camera workshops for the next year, see if I can do a few shorts in preparation for my larger projects.
You could say I have a big year in front of me, but man, I’ve had it so good lately, it would be insulting not to aim that high.
I love everyone of you in my life,