Friday, February 18, 2011

Baby Rabbits & Elevators

I have no elevator speech. This is a problem. I need one, apparently, in order to tell strangers who and what I am. But can I cram a long life and a dozen passionate interests into a thirty-second sound bite? I could learn to speak like the voice-over on an ad for some dicey new medication that ends with "Ask your doctor if you should take this pill. It will change your life." (Or end it.)

No, that won't work for me. I see no possibility of summarizing three occupations, a marriage and its end, two children, a dozen or so moves around the country, the thousands of books I've read, the horse, the dogs and cats, the political fears and views, the friends, the enemies. No I barely fit into the elevator, let alone into an introductory speech delivered breathlessly between the lobby and the top floor.

This elevator speech is one of the myriad details I've been chasing like baby rabbits lately. These details of the business side of writing, too long avoided, now feel urgent and interesting. Cute as these little bits of organization are, they often skitter away to hide under the second growth of clutter, only to be spied racing across the road, about to be flattened by some eight-cylinder project roaring high speed toward my desk. These baby rabbit details, if they survive, multiply and nibble the day away. But they are so cute--like my new logo, my brochure, a business email. Fortunately, they are not as cute as a new poem or a new short story, so I'll let them hop around and catch 'em as I can.

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