On Symmetry (Or, There’s Something about November)

“Hey, how about that?” I said when I received the schedule for my senior year in high school.  I had been waiting for it for a few days, eager to see who my teachers were and what order my classes would be in.  (Mind you, these were the days, in that long-ago 20th century, when class schedules were snail-mailed.)  For three days, I had been watching for the mailman, a rotund fellow by the name of Al, to deliver it.  Finally, the schedule had arrived.

 

The first thing I noticed was that one of my teachers would be someone I knew well, someone who had taught me in a different class as a freshman.  I will call him Mr. D.  And back in my freshman year, he taught English and unlocked for the class the treasures of great literature and the colors of the writing rainbow.  But now, in my senior year, he would be teaching a class called Current Events.  Great, I thought.  I always liked Mr. D.

 

On the first day of school, I lingered after class for a couple of minutes, talked with him about what might be in store for the semester, reminisced about ninth grade.  “Freshmen,” he said with a roll of his eyes.  He still taught freshman English, too.  In fact, even as we spoke, the first brave souls of his freshman English class began to trickle in to the room.

 

I told him about the impact his writing rainbow lesson had on me, how I still thought about it, still tried to live it, and always would.  That made him smile.  I asked him if he still talked about writing rainbows and creativity and reaching for your best to the current crop of freshmen.  “Indeed, I do,” he said.  I was glad to hear it, and hoped some of the wary underclassmen filtering into the room, eyeing me suspiciously as I conversed with the teacher at his desk, would be as motivated by the lesson as I had been.

 

“Well, it’s good being back in your class,” I said then, knowing I needed to go.  If I didn’t leave soon, I’d be late for my next period.  “I look forward to the semester.”

And I did.  I meant it.  And it didn’t disappoint.  Mr. D. didn’t disappoint.  Throughout the term, he assigned for us to read through issues of Time and Newsweek, and report on the news, every week.  (Again, this was early 1990s education!  No Googling.)  Frequently, my worldview clashed with his, and we’d have spirited debates.  He’d write in the margins of my handwritten essays that he disagreed with my interpretation of events but that he supported my right to hold views contrary to his own.  We argued, we clashed about politics, but I enjoyed the class.  And, I like to think old Mr. D. enjoyed having me as his student again.

 

One morning, a frosty, early November, hint-of-winter morning, I arrived in his class a few minutes early.  Since it was the first period of the day, there were no departing students from a previous class.  It was just Mr. D. seated at his desk.

 

I approached, and we started talking.  I mentioned again how it was good having the opportunity to take a class he taught.  “I never thought I’d be in your class again,” I said.  “Freshmen year and now senior year . . .”

“There’s a kind of symmetry to it,” Mr. D. said.  “You got stuck with me at the start, and at the end, of your high school career.”

 

A kind of symmetry, yes.  I liked the sound of that.

*******************

It’s hard to believe it’s been almost five years since I published the e-book version of The Eye-Dancers.  Time continues to speed along on rapidly fluttering wings.  I remember well the stops and starts that led up to publication day.  There were hiccups, hurdles, and unexpected delays.  But eventually, release day arrived–in November 2012.

 

So it seems fitting somehow that, five years later, there have been delays and hurdles and hiccups with the sequel, as well.  Editing has taken longer than expected.  The writing process has taken longer.  And of course sometimes things simply crop up, a week’s delay here, a month’s there.  The end result has been a later-than-originally-anticipated release date.  But The Singularity Wheel is getting close!  I am working through the final substantive edits this week and next.  Following that, a few heaven-sent beta readers will comb through the manuscript.  Once they are done reading and offer feedback, I will do a final, final round of edits followed by a thorough copy edit/proofread.  The cover will be completed.  The file readied for publication.  And . . .

 

A November release date is planned.  Five years, to the month, following the release of The Eye-Dancers.

There is something about November, indeed.

 

As Mr. D. might say, there’s a kind of symmetry to it.

Thanks so much to everyone for all your ongoing support.  It means the world.  And thanks so much, as always, for reading!

–Mike

 

46 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. deborahanndykeman
    Aug 23, 2017 @ 16:17:37

    Congratulations on your progress! I’m looking forward to seeing your cover. The writing process for me is usually very quick, but the editing…a whole different matter! I loved school, and it was always extra special when you had a teacher that you really connected with. Great post!

    Reply

  2. Meredith
    Aug 23, 2017 @ 16:45:26

    I always like reading your posts. Congratulations on your soon-to-be-released book!

    Reply

  3. Donna Gwinnell Lambo-Weidner
    Aug 23, 2017 @ 17:47:06

    Thanksgiving AND The Singularity Wheel…two things to look forward to in November!

    Reply

  4. jjspina
    Aug 23, 2017 @ 20:39:42

    Congrats on the progress of your book! Look forward to reading it!

    Reply

  5. joannerambling
    Aug 23, 2017 @ 22:56:19

    This is great news so big congratulations from me too

    Reply

  6. Lyn
    Aug 24, 2017 @ 10:23:56

    Five years since The Eye-Dancers was published 😮 There needs to be more teachers like Mr. D. I had one like him in 6th grade – Mr Riley – who also happened to be the principal. I wish there’d been more like him in junior high school; I might have enjoyed it more 🙂

    Reply

    • The Eye-Dancers
      Aug 24, 2017 @ 19:56:22

      Thanks, Lyn! And yes–there is nothing quite like a great teacher, is there? We never forget the great ones. (Of course, we don’t forget the horrid ones, either, when you come to think of it.:)

      Reply

  7. Chic Mona
    Aug 24, 2017 @ 15:03:05

    As I read your post I’m reminded of Aesop’s story that begat the line “slow and steady wins the race”. There is so much meaning in your school day memories and of Mr.D. and rainbow writing…..my children enjoyed rainbow reading in school (also before social media). How blessed you are to have rainbow experiences 😉 and may this new adventure bring many more.~cheers

    Reply

    • The Eye-Dancers
      Aug 24, 2017 @ 19:57:40

      Thanks so much! And hopefully Aesop was right:) as this entire editing and sequel-writing process has definitely been slow and steady! Nothing fast about it.:) Always great hearing from you!

      Reply

  8. evelyneholingue
    Aug 25, 2017 @ 22:11:32

    Oh you’re getting really close to your goal! Congrats and best of luck for the last touches which are always a little daunting.

    Reply

  9. Mary J. McCoy-Dressel
    Aug 26, 2017 @ 17:08:54

    Congrats on a November release, Michael. Wishing you tons of success.

    Reply

  10. Karina Pinella
    Aug 26, 2017 @ 19:55:07

    It’s great to know your release date at this point. It will be here before you know it. Then, you’ll be thinking of another project . . . And the cycle continues . . .

    Reply

    • The Eye-Dancers
      Aug 27, 2017 @ 17:29:01

      You’re right, Karina–the release date will be here before I know it–which is what I’m afraid of.:) It’s been a long and rewarding process up to this point, and hopefully people will enjoy the sequel! Thanks so much for all of your ongoing support!

      Reply

  11. renxkyoko
    Aug 28, 2017 @ 19:07:25

    I hope Mr. D is still alive and well ? If so, have you sent him a copy of your book ?

    I’m wondering too why I’m not getting your posts . It says I’m still following you.

    Reply

    • The Eye-Dancers
      Aug 28, 2017 @ 19:13:16

      Sadly, Mr. D is no longer alive.:( He passed away a few years ago. Hmm–that is odd about the posts not getting to you.:( Maybe you can unfollow me and then follow again? Kind of a reboot?:) That might work! Always great hearing from you!

      Reply

  12. Anna Waldherr
    Aug 29, 2017 @ 18:57:11

    Good things come to those who wait. Best of luck w/ the new book!

    Reply

  13. Tink the Belle
    Aug 29, 2017 @ 20:43:37

    November, my birthday month💗

    Reply

  14. Ste J
    Aug 30, 2017 @ 10:02:15

    Great news with all the happenings, I’m looking forward to the new book. It must be a nightmare for teachers debating with kids these days, what with the internet and all the SJW mindsets out there…

    Reply

    • The Eye-Dancers
      Aug 30, 2017 @ 17:30:11

      Thanks! It has definitely been a challenge trying to whip this book into shape.:) And I agree, the debates with students these days must be trying for teachers, to say the least!

      Reply

  15. loshame
    Aug 30, 2017 @ 18:53:45

    I like it 😊

    Reply

  16. Baydreamer
    Sep 08, 2017 @ 03:37:06

    I enjoyed reading about Mr. D. who had such a positive impact on your high school years, Mike. It reminded me of a teacher I had in h.s. who had a similar positive impact on me. Those are gifted teachers, who not only know their subjects, but can somehow instill great life lessons into their students. Also, congrats on your new upcoming book! That is exciting, and I can relate to the editing process. Sometimes, when I’m in the process, I feel like there simply is no end to editing. 🙂 Anyway, best of luck! Lauren 🙂

    Reply

    • The Eye-Dancers
      Sep 08, 2017 @ 12:56:26

      Thanks so much, Lauren! You’re right–there is nothing quite like a great teacher. They really do stay with us our entire lives . . . And I can definitely relate to the editing never ending.:) To think that I am almost there with this, at the end of the journey for this book, seems almost unbelievable!

      Reply

  17. DelBlogger
    Sep 12, 2017 @ 01:25:19

    Congratulations, I am sure it’s well worth the wait.

    Reply

  18. reocochran
    Sep 13, 2017 @ 01:27:57

    Symmetry in the past, symmetry in the present and I’m sure your book has symmetrical events, too.
    My seventies high school experience included literature mini- courses. By the time I knocked off the science, math and geography I took a full year of those classes. My parents thought I could have just slipped off to college but I had so much reading and fun! 19th abd 20th century lit, science fiction, revolutionary war lit, European lit, Arthurian Legends, and American literature. By the time I went to college I could write up reports, type into computer and print them up. I loved my freshman English teacher who also taught a few of those literature courses. Mr. Hussey, Mr. Billman and Senor Donaldson were awesome, but my theater and debate teacher, Miss Frazier was who created my “outside the box” person I am today. Fun doing a landmark post while also reflecting on our own paths which may have a sense of symmetry or a big launch forward. 😀

    Reply

    • The Eye-Dancers
      Sep 14, 2017 @ 00:14:15

      Hi Robin.:) Your comments are always so thoughtful and fun to read. There is nothing quite like good teachers from our past, is there? We never forget the great ones. Or the bad ones, for that matter!

      Reply

  19. stockdalewolfe
    Sep 21, 2017 @ 01:53:47

    Congratulations to you! Best, Ellen

    Reply

  20. penneyvanderbilt
    Sep 29, 2017 @ 09:15:05

    Reblogged this on Crazy Pasta Child.

    Reply

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