Originally posted September 19th… before I blew up my database!
My first blog posting ever, it needs to be special. Memorable. Charming.
“Welcome to My World, the World Of the Big Man!” (epic fail, huh? Thought so, let’s give it another shot.)
“Welcome!” (Sincere and succinct… it’ll do.)
My name is Sean and It’s a Big Man’s World is my blog, outlet, and mantra all rolled into one. It could be misconstrued as a pretty, I don’t know, arrogant title. I prefer to see it as confident, took years to get to the point where I felt good about the words leaving my mouth.
Ultimately it’s a statement of personal power and triumph over an entity that beat me senseless for years… lack of confidence and belief in myself.
It all started in a dear friend’s home in Vegas over MLK weekend, 2009. I didn’t know why I felt so depressed, unhappy and, late one particular night, borderline-suicidal. I doubt that I would have done something rash because I couldn’t imagine doing that to Jill (her home was way too beautiful to bloody up… odd thinking, I know!), but I kept seeing horrible vignettes that all ended with me hurting myself.
But I fought back… thought of my daughters, played “Stuck in a Moment” by U2 to try to snap out of it (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stuck_in_a_Moment_You_Can’t_Get_Out_Of, in case you don’t know the message and story behind it). And at some point, these little footsteps pittered down the hallway (it was a good-sized house)… Jill looked me dead in the eye and said, “Let’s go have a smoke.”
First of all, it was five-something AM and pitch black… she would have barely seen me on that couch much less locked onto my eyes. Secondly, I had a mini-smoking phase with the lone rule being that I didn’t partake in my home county… only away from home while hanging out with friends.
(Note: I never said I’m normal and if you’re reading this, you’re likely well aware of this fact anyway.)
We headed out to the patio with only our PJ’s and slippers on, throw blankets wrapped around our heads… we were freezing, shivering like old women waiting in a communist bread line. You know what I’m talking about if you’ve ever been to the desert in the winter!
She saw me shivering and suggested that I get a full-sized blanket from the house because the throw wasn’t large enough to cover my upper body. I told her that I’m a big man in a little man’s world, pretty comfortable with that being the way things were (I’m 6’4”, 245lbs). She took a drag from her cigarette, stared off into space and then turned back to me a minute-or-so later…
“Why don’t you make it a big man’s world?”
That was my “a-ha!” moment. I had never thought of making the world fit me instead of me fitting it before, so simple yet profound in the same breath. My life began to change for the better and while it wasn’t Moses and the burning bush, I “marinated” on it for the coming months.
The next thing I knew, I decided to write a novel. Never even had written a short story before but I knew I could do it. Why become a writer, you might ask? Alfredo told me to do it, the voices, too… Alfredo and the voices told me to do it!
Alfredo and I worked together for eight years, wrote a lot of policies and memos and performance appraisals and blah blah business propaganda. Writing always came easy to me, don’t know why but it did. English was his second language so he had to work a bit harder and appreciated the ease with which I could move his thoughts to an empty document and fill the page.
He asked me the simplest question one day… “Señor, why are you here? You should be writing.” The answer was that I had fantasized about it for years but reality would bring me back to the present. It took two years but I gave it a shot while bonding with my youngest daughter one night and came away with eight intense pages (the beginning of my story). I didn’t know it at the time but I had to write, there was no other option for me.
So as I wrap this up, there’s a file backed up on multiple media with the most ambitious, marathon-like project I’ve ever attempted. It started eighteen months ago as an amateurish beginning with promise, now it’s getting stronger day-by-day, three chapters from completion. Gonna use the remainder of 2011 to polish it, have folks I trust help edit… send it out into the ether to see what literary agents think in January.
So I decided to write a novel… some days it’s the most exhilarating feeling ever, others it’s, “What in the hell have I gotten myself into?” But then I think, “It’s a Big Man’s World… why not me?”
Hope this wasn’t too painful, next time will be shorter. Promise.
18 chapters, 474 pages, 79,655 words.