29 March 2002

"You don't want to make me mad, do you?"
   - Xena, Warrior Princess 

Wow. I never would have referenced Unamuno's quote in my last entry (and I'm sure most people thought it was the last, indeed), had I realized I was going to move away from my weblog... err... blog... for more than two months. But I didn't -- realize it, I mean -- and I got a nasty surprise today, when I discovered the site was removed from its usual little corner on the web. However, I've re-archived, and re-published, and with luck, you're reading again.

I've had a nasty temper all day today. These fits don't come often, but when they do, they drag on and on, like a slow-moving mudflow that engulfs everything it touches. My mood feels like mud, sluicing through my thoughts, my actions, and my dreams, and there's no making pies with it. I don't always need a reason to be in this mood, either. Sometimes it comes without even the slightest provocation. It's worse when there is provocation, however. Today, I am provoked.

I've been on the telephone for hours today, tracking down small dollar amounts owed to me. A few here, a few there, none of the amounts bigger than the proverbial hill of beans. Each little writing project I undertake ends with an invoice. My expectation is that when the writing is delivered, my job ends, and a check should follow, preferably without my having to ask for it again. That doesn't seem to be the standard procedure with my clients, based on the spectacular lack of mail I've received. 

What I don't like about this dunning process is that it makes me feel like a beggar. I might not resent it so much if the amounts in question were in four or five figures, but really -- is it necessary for me to chase an editor down and tackle her for a sum less than $200?

Regardless, all these people succeed in doing is convincing me I don't want to do future business with them. I'd rather write for pure pleasure, and burn the articles at the end, than offer them up for sale to people who don't honor contracts and pay promptly. Which is how I got here today... this space represents pure pleasure to me. I'm relatively invisible, relatively unread, and I can speak my piece without worrying about the editor's market (I'm always very careful about the targeted audience and the editor's guidelines). And I won't have to chase anyone down for the dime a word.

Excuse me. I'm now so happy, I need to go to the bathroom.


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