Today I cease to be 42 and am now 43.

When I find out I’ve gotten by another year with all ten fingers and ten toes working I feel grateful. I’ve been through a few really really dangerous medical situations – most particularly a situation where I had massive internal bleeding and would have been dead if I got to the hospital one day later – so with some humor I say things like “43 and still not dead!” I don’t mean that in a morbid way – but I don’t take it for granted that I’m still around.

Then somewhere when my birthday hits I try to remember if I did anything for the last year. At first I often go – oh no – I didn’t do ANYTHING this year! Then I start to remember things and typically find out there are things to be excited about. It took a while and I realized that one of the very most important changes is that I started writing music, and reading books about any number of topics. This means less internet! Which for me os good.

Your reading of this blog is part of my composing – here is where the whole process started – typing not playing.

In my first post I say:

“So I’m here on this blog to address the question – how do you rebegin writing? How do you topple writer’s block? Does it depend on some form of transcendent inspiration or can it be done through simple discipline? I’m here to find out.”

And I’m blogging to hopefully help the very small percentage of people thinking about these things and having some accountability to you readers and to do what I say I am going to do.

I’m remembering how at first it was very hard for me to improvise even for 5 minutes. The piano was a hot potato. Now things are very different, and I see composition ahead of me. And I think these pieces are going to be heard.

Thank you!

Also free tip – I wanted to mention specifically that another huge boost to me is reading books I’m getting out of the local library. This started when, on a lucky Tuesday I got home from some post production (computers) and when I was about to check my email I said – WAIT! Too much computer. I know it’s only 6 but I”m not rouching a computer again today. Now my internet is WAY down and I’m reading instead.

Physical libraries are spectacular. They have so many books, even small libraries, that whenever I go in there there are something like 15 books I mull over before choosing one. Right now I’m reading :Listen Like a Dog – I”m a big dog person so I had no choice. It’s an interesting book and it explains that most people are bad listeners and I see now that I could sharpen my listening. I find that reading is in itself relaxing, in part because it gets you out of your head, and empowering because you are drinking in years of another persons life and wisdom and raw information in a matter of hours. I highly recommend this!