Sunday, February 12, 2017

Ch ch ch changes...

I opened up my WP blog, here, which I've had for years.  Will be posting there from now on.

Monday, September 05, 2016

Lloyd Llyod Lylod

Never name a character Lloyd because for every time you type that name, you will type every variation but the correct spelling.  I've never backspaced so much in my life.

Saturday, September 03, 2016

Lost and found


We went to the Bay area this summer and we found this turret in the Marin Headlands.  I knew I had to be inspired by this place, because it was super cool.  I finally figured out how to use in it a story I've been stuck on for like two years.  Score.

Friday, July 29, 2016

::taps microphone::

Well, hello there.

I've been busy this summer sending out submissions,  writing a query letter, and organizing the upcoming poetry club at the elementary school I work at.  And so many revisions.  On so many things.  Plus more on the newer-ish novel.

I've got four submissions out right now, a slew of poems which would be um... ::counts:: 10, and a short story. I just hope that the eventual rejection letters don't all come on the same day.  That would be kind.  Of no one's doing though but mine.  Heh.

So query letters.  They are a thing that may need more revision than the actual novel.  Which also still needs some cleaning up, but I decided years ago that it would be a forever project.  So I don't worry.

I'm also contemplating in a very small way, asking people to read it.  Can you imagine the gall in that!?  LOL  Only a very tiny part of me feels that way.

Thanks for reading!


Sunday, November 15, 2015

usefulness

Now that I have a phone I can trust, (shout out to Moto G!) I've started adding submission nsuggestions to my calendar, so I don't forget about them, and also so I don't need to keep 10 tabs open on my computer.

I've been plugging away at adding the edits to the 5th draft of the novel.  I'm coming to the conclusion that there has to be an end point on this somewhere, though I don't know where that point is.  I keep finding things to fix, some absolutely needed and others my preference.

The weekend "creative" group at my school has kept me on task.  Plus it's a nice social situation.

Plug plug.....

Sunday, September 27, 2015

Junot Díaz and Karen Russell onwriting short stories - The New Yorker Fe...





I just watched the 10 version of this, and now I'm saving this to watch later.  REALLY good.

Thursday, September 03, 2015

Surprise!

I have no memory of most of the poems I write.  I find them again, and am surprised, and a little critical.

Aprils disappear in no time.


Tuesday, July 28, 2015

5 in 10

Just finished the 5th draft of the "novel."  Probably the quickest revision of the five.  One more pass, and then I will have reached the limit of my abilities.  Or maybe not. I say this everytime and then can see even more that needs doing.

Cheers.

Friday, May 29, 2015

Mashup maybe?

Goldsmith here reminds me of Morrissey.

Friday, May 22, 2015

Poetic intervention maybe?

Do conceptualist poets like it when their work reminds everyone of DuChamp's Fountain?


Tuesday, March 17, 2015

again and again

My thoughts over the course of the afternoon and evening after reading this

Initially upon reading what you did, I thought that you read the whole autopsy report, with no editing, or "massaging" just the words on the clinical page.  Words that described the last moments of a young man's body, after a traumatic death.  That would have been enough.  I'd argue that would have been a strong performance poem.  Taking news facts and broadcasting those the news reporters usually don't report. To use the clinical report to show the loss of the man, Michael Brown.  A contrast between the man and his horrible death, an indictment perhaps, of the true loss.

Then I realized that is not what you did.

More facts came to light.  You started with a massage, and ended with commentary on a penis.  A dead black man's penis. 

Given the racist stereotypes about black men's genitalia, the fact that you end your poem on the autopsy comment that those genitalia were "unremarkable", makes them remarkable.   That you chose to end on that fact, not the actual ending of the report, brings the stereotype full circle, back into racist ground.  For me that was where your theoretical intentions, to maybe show the true loss of the man, falls to the ground.

Massaging words.  We shoehorn words, we smooth words, we revise and edit words, and maybe, though I wouldn't use that term myself in this context, massage words. 

Words have meanings.  I'd say we all agree on that. They bring to mind other words.  Metaphor, allusion, revision and choice, all methods the writer employs to get their meanings across.  Multiple meanings.  For which the writer is responsible.  Brown was unarmed then, and he is unarmed now.  But this time, we know his name.

The Body of Michael Brown.  Massaging as verb.  Unremarkable.  Then throw in a Latin quote to balance it all?   I don't know.  If there hadn't been editing, redacting, rearranging, maybe I could have trusted you. 

My overriding thoughts were for Michael Brown's family, and their thoughts on the use of Michael Brown's Body for this endeavor.   They've probably seen the report.  Its horror is not as bad as their dead son or the suffering he endured.  It's not as bad as the life they will have to live without their son.  It's filled with words on a page.  Words up for grab, apparently.

But what I'd like to propose, is that you use your words to write to them to explain your intent.  How what you did in that poem would help them, or Michael Brown for that matter.  It's not just a conference playground.  Massage your words, that aren't from an autopsy report, to explain.  Because words have meaning.  The words you chose to read have meaning.  And if the life of the man, in your poem, Michael Brown the poetical device, has any meaning, it is one that their family should be able to hear.

By adding yourself to that report, feeling that your choices made for a better poem, made literature, or a better performance, then you should use yourself to explain.  Use yourself like you used him.  Behold the man, but which man?

I've read my son's autopsy report.  It's factual and clinical.  But every scalpel slice described was through my son's beloved skin.  Every organ removed, his heart especially, became fodder for that report.  My infant son did not die in the way Michael Brown did, so I will never understand how his family feels, but I understand how I would feel if the clinical documentation of my son's body, so personal to me, was made public after his death, and was used by others. 


It is personal.  Part of writing poetry is to elicit a response from the reader.  You achieved that.  Now you will have to hear those responses.  I hope your intentions for this poem equal the weight of the response to your selection of those words.  Full circle.

Sunday, February 08, 2015

ready set...

I've reached the point in revision, where I want to get some cash, and ship the novel off to someone who will do all this editing for me.

I started the fifth revision, and I'm so blah on it all.  I'll put it away for a bit, and then start it up again.

What it did make me do, was open another file of the novel that would be up next.  Haven't read that in a while, and see both opportunity and more editing.  Tis the way it is.

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Return to Deathlehem!

I'm thrilled to be included in this charity anthology, my first short story publication!  Go check it out!  Return to Deathlehem, An Anthology of Holiday Horrors to benefit the Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric Aids Foundation!

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Apparently Norman Mailer said, "Writing books is the closest men ever come to childbearing."

Maybe or maybe not.

Writing books is like having a 9 month pregnancy.  Finishing the first draft is like the final push birthing the child.  Editing and revising is like raising that child until he or she is 18.

I'm sure I could go on with this analogy...

19 minutes agoWriting books is the closest men ever come to childbearing.

Saturday, August 30, 2014

It's been so long....

I'm on my fourth go round with the long story.  I'm using Word for this revision, as yWriter seems be more cumbersome for editing. Most of the major changes are done, as far as I can tell so far so there isn't moving around of stuff.  That is why I liked yWriter, it allowed easy access to the parts.  

I'm using this link and this one too to help guide me.  I'm sure there are several others that I can't find right now.

Still waiting on word about two story submissions.  That'd be nice, you know.

I'm of the opinion that writing the first draft is the most fun, and then righting all the others is the work.  Heh, see what I did there?

Ahem.

I'm hoping to get at least three more chapters done this weekend, then I won't feel so bad when I don't get any done after work because I'm so bone weary that I can't manage any.  It is what it is.

I will end on a quote I found today, that is just yummy in so many ways:

Writers don’t write from experience, although many are hesitant to admit that they don’t. …If you wrote from experience, you’d get maybe one book, maybe three poems. Writers write from empathy.
— 
Nikki Giovanni





And as I said elsewhere, that is why it is hard to kill your darlings.



Sunday, August 10, 2014

re the novel

There had been a certain scene that I've been avoiding/not knowing how to handle pretty much since I started this thing.  Last night it came to me.  So I wrote it.  Weird, adding stuff to the earlier parts of it.

Score, in more ways than one.

And I'm still mostly happy with it this morning.  I finished the third draft recently, so a pleasant surprise.

Sunday, May 11, 2014

string you know

I woke up this morning with an idea for tying together my long story aka the novel, even tighter.  It will tie a few characters, and their motivation.  And probably other stuff too that I have yet to realize.  And it won't take much time either.  Probably could do it all today.


Sunday, February 02, 2014

2014

Typing that makes me feel like I'm living in the future.

January:  17/31  Indicates days I actually wrote something.  A good portion of these were editing poems, the rest revising the novel that will never be finished.*

Also received Robert Peake's The Silence Teacher.  If you want to learn how to title a book of poetry, read his first poem in this book.  Seriously, on the money.  Also, really good stuff.  I've only read the first few, but I like how he weaves around the central theme without naming it constantly.  Kind of like learning to live with what he has to learn to live with.  It is always there, but under the covers.  Plus that really works to strengthen the poems.  Father-Son Conversation I'd read before, and again, tremendously touching.  The last strophe is truth named, and...and a promise.  



*It's done, but it will never be.  (Also a good portion of this month I've been sick, so I'm okay with 55%.  Rounded up only slightly.)

Sunday, December 29, 2013

I have to say, I just love all the cool poetry stuff that is happening on Tumblr.   Women Poets Wearing Sweatpants is so much fun, and sweet, and touching, and mindblowing.  [Insert your own adjective and adverbs].

No New Years Revolutions that I know of, because according to newish research, when you talk about your goals, they are less likely to happen, because your brain is tricked into thinking the good feeling you get talking about it, is the actual goal happening.

This makes so much sense in my life.

Either way you do it, happy new years!

ETA:  Before I even got this post up, my lines were accepted there.  LOL

Quick poetry too!!


Tuesday, November 05, 2013

I'm very happy to have one of my poems included in the new anthology Try To Have Your Writing Make Sense: The Quintessential PFFA Anthology!  Participating at PFFA has done more for my writing than anything else.  I really cannot recommend it more.

Go check it out, buy a copy or two!  And more than anything, enjoy!  Some really good stuff.

Saturday, October 05, 2013

Wow, I found this list  of literary magazines retweeted on Don Share's twitter.  Very comprehensive.  1500.

Update.  I dipped back into the novel last weekend.  It had been since June that I opened the file and worked on it.

In other news, there is no other news.

Saturday, September 21, 2013

So many poems, so little time

Last year I completed Coursera's Modern American Poetry course, and thought I would repeat it this year.  Several Modpo people were doing this.  I signed up, but have only had the chance to watch one video.  This year, I'm just too exhausted by the end of the day to give the proper attention to the course.  I'm not unenrolling, but will dip in when able.  It's an awesome course, but I just don't have the energy that it deserves.

And people wonder why I don't get a PhD.  Right there folks, right there.  Something would have to give, and I know it would be me.  Ain't happening.  Boundaries and limits ftw.  

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Hands across the water...

Watching this right now.  Cool.


Thursday, June 27, 2013

"Ignore warning" Wow, that's a grave warning, just for a left blank field

I've gotten a few more chapters updated, and one slid into another.  It was a lagging chapter that didn't fit on its own, so now it is in.  Works for now.

I've also been updating a few poems, and have gotten good feedback for one at PFFA.

I've collected the genealogical ones I wrote two (?) Napos back now, into some sense.  Still working on those.  They need a stronger POV I think.  Maybe, we'll see.

I tried revising with music playing in the background.  I never do this unless a specific song has inspired the thing.  I'm not sure this technique works for me.  When I'm listening to the music, the lyrics are playing in my mind, in addition to the listening.  But when I'm writing, my words are doing that.  I can't work well with both happening at the same time.  I wrote several short stories that were inspired by specific songs, and that worked, because it keeps the energy where it needed to be.

Oh, and on a local front, a poetry job.  Who would have thought!


Sunday, June 02, 2013

June!?

Well, that took longer than I thought it would.  First Napo, then May, then anniversaries, then a car accident, then finishing work, daughter's high school graduation, then figuring stuff post car accident, now here we are in June.  Hello June.

I've got summer happening.  Job is 9 months only, so this is very exciting.  I've got a list, and I'm gonna work it.

Priorities shift, time allows, and there you have it, time to do what I'd like.  I'm so jealous of the retired, time, health willing, to do what you please, and on your own timeline.  Whoever said youth was wasted on the young is right.  If you only knew when you were young.... Anyhoo...

So, list.  Yeah, since lists actually do work for me, I'm planning on a fruitful summer.  Here's hoping.

::plots::

Literally.

Monday, April 29, 2013

April 29 American Sentence 3

American Sentence 3



What manner of men fear being raised up to swallow wholly the stars?

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Li-Young Lee reads


I heard Li-Young Lee read in February.  I was so very impressed.  He comes across as a very quiet man in his poetry, someone finding the exactly right word with thoughtfulness and in a time scale that is not ours.  However, in real life, he’s hysterical in his quietness.  Very funny.  As in his poetry, he referenced his wife often.  I think she’s probably as fascinating as him.  He related stories about her influence on his thinking, and his poetry.  I think he contemplates her words and influence more than his poetry could ever relate.

He talked about writing.  He’s considered a confessional poet, but he sees it more as a gift from him.  Kwame Dawes introduced him.  Dawes discussed whether one becomes a priest if they are hearing/reading a confessional style poem.  Dawes dismissed that as limiting.  He too thinks it is a gift that one gives to another rather than to be the oppositional thing of confession.  Confession sets up a divide I think, I’m seeing the confessional door and screen, and if you hear the poems as only that, you miss so much.

Lee talked about race.  Many of his poems touch on race and his experiences as an Asian man in a predominantly white culture.  He talked about one time his children had a hard time when he was walking with them, so he backed off, and the comments stopped.  Someone said they thought his children were Jewish.  His wife is German.  He couldn’t figure how those people came up with that. 

They way I used to hear his poems in my mind when I was reading them was different than before I actually heard him read.  He reads softly, which I somehow expected, but the nuance and specifics were different.  He reads very colloquially, casually, but very pointedly.  He means what he says.  There is no denying his commitment to his work.

Lee said that death was behind all he wrote.  He contemplates death constantly and knows it could happen at any time.  He said that we know so much about our lives except our deaths are kept hidden from us.   I’d never considered it that way before.  Still thinking about it.

He didn’t read many poems, but did read several longer ones, including a new one, The Undressing, that is the companion to (I think) Virtues of a Boring Husband.  Which is much funnier hearing him read, than on the page.  The new one was a dialogue of sorts, with wife, as he begins to make love to her.  Poignant and again, thoughtful.

He talked about revision and how he does not revise.  He rewrites.  He uses pen and paper and rewrites the whole poem.  Completely.  Not just words and lines here and there, he does a complete rewrite.  He worries as he ages how this will affect his poems.  Time weighs heavily on him.

It was a wonderful evening.  I met him briefly after the reading when I got my copy of Rose signed.  We talked about hair, and his lack thereof.  I expected a head full given his photos, and heck, poems!, but he had it buzzed.  A good look, but just unexpected.

I hope we get more poets of his caliber here.  That would be awesome!  So if you ever have the chance to hear him read, do so.  It will make you very happy!  Time, and all its weight, very well spent!

Wednesday, March 06, 2013

Justin Bieber, who knew?

Welcome Justin Bieber fans!!  Enjoy my poem here!

Saturday, February 23, 2013

xenotexting

After watching this, video of Christian Bok speaking about his Xenotext project, I really want to get a copy of the genome of my son, and use that to write a poem.  One doctor has some of it because of testing that was done.

It's not like I haven't written about my son before, but this would really be of him.

Additional note, question.  Why aren't all the science fiction writers all over this project?  They really should be.

Cool beyond words.