Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Scarab

From the press release:

Scarab, the first literary magazine for the iPhone, now available in the AppStore

Scarab combines the intimacy of reading with the thrill of being read to by your favorite author.Taking full advantage of the iPhone’s capabilities, Scarab plays a recording of a poem, essay, or short story as the reader scrolls along with the text. Beta-testers found the experience to be an,“Ingenious concept that brought the poems to life.”

Each edition of Scarab consists of 11 works of poetry or prose, and an interview with a respected author. The content of the first issue is even more stunning than the use of the new medium. Scarab offers work by former Poet Laureate Charles Simic, National Book Critics Award Finalist Tony Hoagland, David Rivard—recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship—and Chase Twichell, dinner of the Hugh Ogden Prize for Poetry. There is also work by exciting new writers MRB Chelko, Hannah Gamble, and David Blair.

The application is available through iTunes for $0.99 in the US, and makes use of the iPhone 3.0 SDK’s new “in app purchasing”. The editions of Scarab are purchased and downloaded directly in the application to your iPhone or iPod Touch for $2.99 or a similar price worldwide.


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My Take


After I posted this excerpt, I downloaded the software, paying the $0.99 one-time charge for the app and $2.99 price for the first edition. It's a good product. Since I listen to a lot of poetry podcasts, this feels like the next new thing for journals.

I like the idea of audio and text on my phone. I like reading the poem with the scroll screen while hearing the poet's voice. It's easy to use, and I enjoyed hearing poems by Charles Simic, Jennifer Flescher, and Chase Twichell. And, there's something about Tony Hoagland's voice that makes me believe him no matter what he says.

What I'm not sure about is whether or not I'd pay $2.99 to download new issues. I like the software, but with so many free podcasts and online journals, it's hard to justify paying for this. But, I do believe in supporting journals in whatever form they take. We'll see if the next issue is as good as the first.


Also, I find the sound quality inconsistent. One poet may sound clear as a bell, while the next one sounds as if he/she has recorded their message over the phone. There may be no way around that issue. And the interview with David Rivard was text only. Since this is an audio product, I would have enjoyed the audio interview to accompany it.

Just to be clear, this is my opinion, not a review. You can find out more on the Scarab Web site.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Confession Tuesday

It's Tuesday. You know what that means? Time to share a piece of yourself with us. Don't forget to hi-five the folks hanging out in The Confessional.



This is a picture from the ICA's production of Waiting for Godot. (Yes, I took a picture of a play in process. No, there was no flash.) Loved the set design.

I fell asleep during the play—before and after intermission. There, I've said it. Not proud of that. Shouldn't have had the second cosmo!

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My parents are visiting from Virginia. It's been such a nice thing having them around. Alex and Ella really love spending time with Grandpa and Grandma. Selfishly, I'm just glad to have the support. Couldn't get through this difficult time without them.

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Work has been hectic the past few weeks and this week is no exception. When one part of my life demands more of my attention, it really throws everything else off, including my writing.

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Time to get back into the gym.

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Wish I could have been in NYC for the reopening of Poets House. Here's a news story on the events of this past weekend. FYI, Poet's House carries 50,000 volumes of poetry. Do they have your title? Contact them to see about having your book added to their collection.

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I'm psyched about my poetry to-do list. Now that it's done, I'm on to the real work of getting things done. October is going to be a great month—I can feel it!

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I'm trying this new widget called LinkWithin. Let me know what you think. Is it slowing down the load time for the blog?

Monday, September 28, 2009

October To-Do List

Forget Halloween—this to-do list is scary!

  1. Finish Misery long poem, as well as two others I've started
  2. Write articles for RWP and Bread and Circus
  3. Collaborate on article with Erin
  4. Finish Eat, Pray, Love
  5. Read and review Conquering Venus
    (Also waiting in the wings are Animal, Vegetable, Miracle and The Gift)
  6. Work on interview with Joseph for poetry journal
  7. Review galleys for Underlife (still waiting for them to arrive)
  8. Plan book release party
  9. Prep for Mass Poetry Festival
  10. Complete video project
  11. Work on Web site
  12. Submit to four journals
  13. Revise manuscript #2

Yes, there's a lot here. I tend to a) have way too much on my plate and b) procrastinate. Guess it works for me on some level, but I'd rather have too much to do than not enough. The No. 1 priority is writing, which should be easier for the next two weeks because my parents are in town helping out with the kids. The plan is to give myself two hours a night to complete something on this list. Brutal, but completely doable.

What does your to-do list look like?

Cave Canem in October



Lots going on with Cave Canem in October. The graphic is hard to read, so click on it to enlarge.

Can you spot my big head? Here's the info for my event, the Mass Poetry Festival:

OCTOBER 17 / 3 - 4:30 PM
Massachusetts Poetry Festival, October 15-18
St. Anne's Church, 8 Kirk Street, Lowell, MA
http://www.masspoetry.org/

Curated by Jarita Davis and emceed by Afaa Weaver, Cave Canem’s reading showcases Lillian Bertram, Tara Betts, Jericho Brown, DéLana R.A. Dameron, Joy Gonsalves, Jacqueline
Jones LaMon, Kamilah Aisha Moon, January Gill O’Neil, Metta Sama and Venus Thrash. Don’t miss Afaa reading with Anne Waldman, 8 - 9 pm, at Lowell High School.

In addition to Lowell, host city to the festival, activities take place in Boston, Lenox, Martha’s Vineyard, New Bedford, Salem and Worcester.

Register for free tickets at Mass Poetry.


I'm also reading in Salem on Thursday, October 15. Visit the Mass Poetry Web site for details.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Blurb



From CNN.com:CEO of Blurb explains why she launched the self-publishing platform and how you can create your own book.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Weekend Roundup

I have a little cold. Normally, that wouldn't bug me but my parents arrived today from Virginia. I've been healthy most of this year, but today I'm on Dayquil. Ugh.

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Tonight I'm going to see a play at the ICA Boston. There's a production of Waiting for Godot by the Classical Theatre of Harlem, set in post-Katrina New Orleans. I thought the production was last week but I was wrong. In any case, it's a night on the town with friends. Woo hoo!

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There's mountains of work to be done around the house but I'm avoiding most of it. Still have to cut the grass. Leaves are beginning to fall so the lawn needs some attention. I hate this time of year.

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And then there's my poetry to-do list. Will post the October list tomorrow, and it's ugly.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

"Managing Writers in the Workplace"

"Poets can generally be identified in the workplace, as in the coffee shops where they are most at home, by their supercilious and standoffish attitude. In most cases, what looks like hauteur is actually shyness, combined with a dollop of fear that they have forgotten your name and/or are about to do something stupid that everyone will notice. Poets tend to sympathize with underdogs: they are strong in union-related activities, and will suddenly and unexpectedly rise to the defense of even the most incompetent colleague."

Poets’ temperaments range across a narrow spectrum from despair to resignation, but they can often be cajoled into getting on with a responsible career because, unlike writers in other genres, they have not even the faintest hope of ever earning a living from their art. They may occasionally dream of a substantial grant, but they know deep-down that they are employees for life."


Sad but true.


Read the full article, Managing Writers in the Workplace – A Guide for Employers, at The Rumpus.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

“The Decline of the English Department”

"What are the causes for this decline? There are several, but at the root is the failure of departments of English across the country to champion, with passion, the books they teach and to make a strong case to undergraduates that the knowledge of those books and the tradition in which they exist is a human good in and of itself. What departments have done instead is dismember the curriculum, drift away from the notion that historical chronology is important, and substitute for the books themselves a scattered array of secondary considerations (identity studies, abstruse theory, sexuality, film and popular culture). In so doing, they have distanced themselves from the young people interested in good books."



From the American Scholar,“The Decline of the English Department.” (A good, long article on the state of English departments. Thanks, Dan, for the link.)


As an English major who currently works at a business school, I think the decreased enrollments in English departments has less to do about professors championing great works and more about career paths. My biggest complaints about English departments are that they do a terrible job helping students map out a career path other than teaching, writing, or editing.


Where I work, we talk about value propositions and return on investments constantly. So when a student decides to invest in a college education, he/she needs some sort of guarantee or assurance that when they leave college they’ll be able to find a job that pays a decent wage. No guarantees in this market, but that’s why I think business is a no brainer while the career path of an English major is less definable.


When I graduated Old Dominion University as an undergrad, I was told over and over again, “Don’t worry. With an English degree, you can do anything—work anywhere.” I think I was told that because English majors have such a general skill set. It took me two years to find decent work.


It’s been my experience that liberal arts majors leave college making the least about of money of any other degree program. Unless you teach, write, or edit, you really have to find a career path that’s flexible enough to match what the job market offers at any given time. Good-paying writing and editing positions are few and far between. And most of us know what it’s like to teach as an adjunct with only the slim hope of someday achieving tenure.


I'm of two minds when it comes to this conversation. But, I just love this quote that Gwendolyn Rosemond posted on my Facebook page after I posted the article, referring to those who choose business over English as a major: “They don't know what they are missing … especially if they think business will get them through the bad times.”

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Confession Tuesday

Happy Tuesday folks! Time to confess. Tell us something you wouldn’t tell us any other day of the week, and we’ll do the same. Don’t forget to say hi to the folks doing time in The Confessional.


Last night, I spent two hours trying to figure out what to do about reservations for the AWP Conference in Denver. The conference takes place in April, yet many of the cheap flights are gone. I’m trying to avoid doing what I usually do with flights—wait until the last minute until there’s nothing left. And Denver in April? Will there still be snow on the ground?


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I think I chose this particular moment to look for flights as a way to avoid writing a poem. But I don’t mind, because I have not one, not two, but three different poems in the works! That’s so unlike me. *smile* I feel as if my writing groove has returned. Yea!


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This week, I believe my publisher is sending me the galleys of my manuscript!!! Woo hoo! Two years on top of many more working on this book—can’t believe it’s almost here!


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This post is beyond my comfort level in relation to the use of exclamation points.

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Wednesday, I’ll be making and posting the mother of all to-do poetry lists. From creating a video to booking travel, to planning a launch party—I’m gearing up to be one busy poet mom. And that’s the way (un-huh, un-huh) I like it (un-huh, un-huh). I like being busy. Maybe it’s the Aquarian in me, but I like to have too much on my plate than not enough.


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On the Wompo listserv, I’ve seen a few messages come across about how hard it is to publish a book of poetry, especially the second book. But I don’t think it’s any easier if it’s your first or your 10th title. The choices for poets are limited: publish by winning, or placing, in a contest; submit through open submission periods; or self publish.


Well, as someone who managed to find a publisher through a publisher’s open submission period, I feel extremely lucky. It’s not easy to get the attention of an editor with a reputable publisher. But if I didn’t happen for me, I would still be doing all of these things I blog about regularly. Meaning, I would continue to mail out packets of poems and manuscripts, I would continue to support other writers—established and emerging—by buying their books, going to readings, and working to build community in my neighborhood. And, I would use all the time I could muster to read, write, and perfect my craft.


Guess what I’m trying to say is no matter what, I would do those things that feed my soul. Poetry and writing does that for me. Poetry is more than publishing a book; it’s about finding a deeper meaning in our everyday lives and sharing it with others. We as artists have to believe in ourselves. We must be persistent and tenacious, and enjoy the ride. Does that make sense?

Monday, September 21, 2009

Precious



I first read Sapphire's novel Push around the time it was published (1996?) when I lived in NYC. That book was a big deal back then. At the time, Sapphire was primarily known as a poet and performance artist but the book garnered a lot of well-deserved attention. I was lucky enough to see her read and perform her poetry a few times.

So I'm thrilled that this book has been made into a movie, produced by Oprah Winfrey and Tyler Perry (thank you for giving us something more than Medea, Mr. Perry!). Check out the trailer for Precious, and note the impressive cameos by Mo'Nique, Mariah Carey, and Lenny Kravitz.

Also, here's an article from Time magazine on the movie.


[Side note: I wrote a review of Push for the Associated Press long ago--I'll have to dig it out of my archives and post if I can find it.]

The Last Sunday of Summer

Summer came too late this year in New England, but on Sunday, we said goodbye in style with a gathering of good food and great friends. (Wish I had taken more photos but you get the idea.)


Steamers!





The only thing out of place on the beach was this monstrosity. They're not part of our group but I had to take a picture.



The Fantastic Four




(L to R: Christine, Robyn, Me, and Erin)



I ate my way through this weekend. The day started with brunch and the good company of these fabulous women writers. Then I hopped in my car and headed back to my neck of the woods for a party on the beach (photos on that in a separate post).

Friday, September 18, 2009

TGIFF

What an exhausting week! TGIFF—and that’s no typo.


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I’m looking into hotel rooms for AWP Denver. Not cheap. So I’m curious who out there is going, and if you’re interested in sharing a room. Feel free to backchannel me at jgill27494 at aol dot com.


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On tap for this weekend, a little brain food. I’m hoping to check out the ICA in Boston, visiting the Shepard Fairey exhibit and seeing Sam Beckett’s play Waiting for Godot by The Casual Theater of Harlem. It’s set in Post-Katrina New Orleans. Wow! I've also had an offer for dancing so I'll have to see where the weekend takes me.


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I’ve blocked off a big chunk of time to work on my long poem. I fear it will take me to uncharted emotional territory, but it should allow me to stretch my skills as a writer. Also on the agenda is a few hours to read, and planning out my video project.


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I think there's a mani/pedi in my future.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Book Blogger Appreciation Week




I didn't know it was Book Blogger Appreciation Week (BBAW)--thanks Susan.

Well, the folks at BBAW have a meme. If you want to participate, consider yourself tagged.


You and Your Reading Habits


  1. Do you snack while you read? If so, favorite reading snack? No. Sometimes I have a cup of tea with lemon, however.
  2. Do you tend to mark your books as you read, or does the idea of
    writing in books horrify you? That's horrifying! :)
  3. How do you keep your place while reading a book? Bookmark? Dog-ears?
    Laying the book flat open? All of the above.
  4. Fiction, Non-fiction, or both? Poetry, of course! Then fiction and nonfiction.
  5. Hard copy or audiobooks? Hard copy but audio for my two-hour commute to and from work.
  6. Are you a person who tends to read to the end of chapters, or are you able to put a book down at any point? I try to read to the end of chapters.
  7. If you come across an unfamiliar word, do you stop to look it up right away? Not always, but I try.
  8. What are you currently reading? Finishing Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert. Next: Conquering Venus by Collin Kelley.
  9. What is the last book you bought? Just ordered The Gift: Creativity and the Artist in the Modern World by Lewis Hyde.
  10. Are you the type of person that only reads one book at a time or can you read more than one at a time? I can read poetry and fiction at the same time, but I can't have two fiction/nonfiction books going at the same time.
  11. Do you have a favorite time of day and/or place to read? At night, after the kids have gone to bed. I also enjoy reading while traveling, airports especially.
  12. Do you prefer series books or stand alone books? Guess I read a lot of stand-alone books, but I like to read books by authors in sequence. Gives me a sense of how the writer's style changes through the years.
  13. Is there a specific book or author that you find yourself recommending over and over? Bird by Bird, by Anne Lamott
  14. How do you organize your books? (By genre, title, author’s last name, etc.?) By genre, then by color. That's the extent of my organization!

Another Day

Thank you thank you thank you for all the messages, posts, and texts you sent yesterday. It helped to get me through a tough day. And y'know, it wasn't so bad. The evening ended on a good note with my writers' group—my community. I felt fortunate to have such a vast network of friends and family.

This is the beginning of the process for me so your support means a great deal.

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Read Dan Nester's weeklong adventure, "Seven Long Days in Skinny Jeans," at The L Magazine. Too funny. Also see the photos on his blog.

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The Mass Poetry Festival is just four weeks away! Check out the lineup and reserve your free tickets. I'm reading once on Thursday, twice on Saturday. And I just checked out the lineup for Saturday night. Reading together in one venue are Louise Gluck, Robert Pinsky, Anne Waldman, and Afaa Michael Weaver—very cool.

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Again, I'm really excited about the long poem I'm writing called the Misery Islands. (Writing about writing this poem is helping me think it through!) Based on two islands off Beverly's coastline called Great Misery and Little Misery, I can't help but feel that this project has come around at the right time. So far, I'm writing eight sections, weaving some real-life events with the history and lore of the islands. My hope is to get over to those remote islands soon—but it's unlikely. I could kayak over but I think I would be taking my life in my own hands since I'm not a strong swimmer!

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On my way to work, I saw no fewer than seven drivers throw cigarette butts out the window. Is the ashtray in those cars out of order? Sorry, that's my mini rant for the morning.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Dog Named Bango

Look at this swanky laptop case my friend and coworker, Robyn, created for me.


It's a sleeve for my Lenovo Ideapad. I picked the fabrics, and Robyn sewed and put together this fabulous creation. My netbook fits snugly into the sleeve, which comes with a matching wrap for the cord.



Want one of these must-have bags? Visit Robyn's Esty site, Dog Named Banjo!

Confession Tuesday

Today is my eighth wedding anniversary.

I have written this confession in my head for the past month, ever since my best friend’s eighth wedding anniversary in August. Thought I would have written some long, drawn out post about my pain, disappointment, and overwhelming anger by now. I mean it literally when I say I have written out this blog post every day in my head.


But today is here, and as I write, I’m more numb than anything else. Without going into too many details, we’re meeting with lawyers this week to make final arrangements before filing. Just looking at the paperwork—looking at eight years of marriage written out in who-gets-what language—is sickening. It is what it is, I guess. He’s moving on and so am I.


Here’s what I would ask from you, dear reader. Stop in and say hello. Even if you’ve never posted, just say, “Hi. Thinking of you today.” The Poet Mom blog has always been a source of great joy for me. And while I don’t want this blog into anything but a creative space to talk about poetry with the occasional mom story, today is an occasion for me to pause and remember that I’m moving the kids and me toward happiness. Today I am saying, “I matter”


Thanks!

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I’m honoring the people, things, and life I have by doing what matters most: hugging the kids, going to the job I love and, later, going to my writers’ workshop.

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Sunday night, I was in a panic because I couldn’t find Ella’s backpack for school. She and Alex had already gone to bed, so I continued to look but gave up in a huff. The next morning, I asked Ella about it and, of course, she knew exactly where it was: in our mudroom, where it always is, hidden in a little storage cabinet I’ve never used. Alex immediately chimed in, “I think she wanted to hide it from the bad guys!” Hmmm …

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On the poetry front, I’ve developed an idea for a long poem … with multiple sections! For some reason, I’ve never written a poem longer than two pages. But I’m really excited to have a focus, which is something I 've lacked for the past few months. It will be based on a series of islands off the coast of Beverly named The Misery Islands (Misery and Little Misery to be more specific). Those titles scream, “write me!”


I'm working on a series of articles for RWP, along with a few other poetry projects I'm taking off the back burner.

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Don’t forget to visit the other sinners hanging out in The Confessional.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

'Bright Star' Trailer HD

Based on the three-year romance between 19th century poet John Keats and Fanny Brawne, which was cut short by Keats' untimely death at age 25.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Real Simple

This hum-drum, rainy weekend is turning out to be full of surprises.



We're spending the weekend visiting with friends, and we have a house guest! Don’t expect myself to do much writing but maybe that’s a good thing.


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Since I haven’t posted a September to-do list, here it is—12 days into the month.


  • Write four poems
  • Finish Eat, Pray, Love (Yeah, I know. I don’t want to talk about.)
  • Read Conquering Venus
  • Work on second manuscript
  • Work on video project for new book
  • Be a more responsive blogger

Thursday, September 10, 2009

A Few of My Favorite Things

I have been remiss in telling everyone to check out Joseph Legaspi's prompt at Read Write Poem called "The Self as Memory, or Vice Versa." Woo hoo!

Georgia public radio has a really lovely interview with Collin Kelley. You can find his link on the right side of the homepage.

Oliver de la Paz gives an interview with The Joe Milford Show.

And Aimee Nezhukumatathil can be heard at New Letters on the air (July 31 interview).

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Thanks to conversations with Kelli and Collin, I am the proud owner of Anne Sexton: The Last Summer.


The book is a fascinating look into Sexton's world through photos, writings, and letters from the last few months of her life. It's quite remarkable to see her handwritten notes over a typed draft of a poem such as "Mercy Street." She was a talented and strikingly beautiful woman who died way too young.


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Work has been draining, but today I was pleasantly reminded that I am employed by a college poised for growth. No retrenchments, as so many other institutions of higher learning are undergoing. No layoffs. Hitting fundraising goals. Highest enrollments ever. Number 1 in entrepreneurship worldwide—it's all good.

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Now that the kids are settling into a routine with school, things are becoming slightly easier. There's a little less stress because everyone knows what happens next. This is the first night this week that I've been able to sit back, relax, and enjoy the silence. There's a lightness in the universe tonight.

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I matter.




Something Old, Something New ... Again!

This past weekend, I spent much of my time refinishing an old chest of drawers that my mother-in-law was giving away. Now, those who know me know that I am not a do-it-yourself kind-of-gal. But good deal coupled with a new challenge is irresistible to me.











Not bad, if I d say so myself. Redo-ing this dresser gave the kids and me a chance to redecorate their room.


Still needs a little work (two of the drawer pulls have broken off already), but I'm quite proud of my effort in giving an old piece of furniture new life.



One less object in a landfill.





Tuesday, September 08, 2009

Back to School

Ella and Alex started school today! Feels strange to say that I am the mother of two school-aged children. Both kids were excited to go (even Ella with her stoic expression).

I took the day off to drop off, pick up, and take photos, of course.







Day One down, many more to go!






Monday, September 07, 2009

Confession Tuesday

Happy Tuesday, folks! Time to confess. Share your deepest, darkest secrets with us and I'm sure we can dig up some bones of our own. Don't forget to say hello to the folks doin' time in The Confessional.



I just love this postcard. Found it in a little British shop in Newburyport with my friend, Heidi. (Thanks Heid!)

It sums up exactly how my life has been these past few months, which begs the question, "Where's my crown?"

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The kids spent the long weekend with their father, so I had oodles and oodles of time. It was fabulous! And while I'd much rather not have to divide the kids' time with their father, having a large block of time to myself was priceless.

What did I do over the weekend? I had lots of to do's that got done! One of which was a do-it-myself home project. My new-found thrift inspired me to repaint a chest of drawers to give to my daughter. It looks great--will post pics later. Also this weekend, I slept in, watched lots of U.S. Open tennis, saw friends, and cleaned house. It felt like I had my own little staycation!

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Do-it-yourself projects rank next to mowing the lawn or taking a hike in the woods--just not my thing. But I took great satisfaction in finally doing this for my little girl.

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Speaking of which, Alex and Ella start school tomorrow! My babies--*sniff* *sniff*--where has the time gone? Photos to come.

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Thought I would have blogged and tweeted more this weekend, but I didn't; however, I am plodding through a new poem. Painful, but I hope to finish it up on Tuesday.

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Next year, I plan to apply for a weeklong workshop at the Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown. The kids will be older, so I won't feel so guilty to leave for longer stretches.

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Do you think we do what we are, or we are what we do? I think we do what we are.

Saturday, September 05, 2009

Class and Action

This morning, I’m influenced by Kelli's post “That Said …,” and from Steve Feller’s post, “Some Random Thoughts about Class and Being an Artist.”

I wonder what my parents must have thought about me going to graduate school back in 1995. I was 26, working in D.C. during the last recession, which seems like a blip on scale compared to this recession. I’m sure they were more concerned about me going to New York than continuing my education. I spent $35K on my two years at NYU, working a full time (yet sorely underpaid) job at Associated Press. It was, by far, the best time in my life. So for me, the money was well spent.

Even though I worked, I always felt poor in grad school, just like my fellow classmates. Being a college student in NYC is a double whammy. Of course, I wasn’t really poor, and I never starved or did without. But things were tight, and using credit cards didn’t help. Despite all of that, I was able to pay off my college loans in nine years. Also paid off my car around the same time, too.

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These days, I only spend money on necessities or things that I truly want. That gives me the freedom to save, cut my debt, and live a simpler life.

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What has made me the happiest and the most “wealthy” is doing what I love. Poetry is something I think I was born to do, more than anything else in my life—more than being a wife or mother. I have a talent for those things but I believe I was born to write.

This year, I've made $50 with my poetry. Good thing I'm not in it for the money.

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When I don’t write, that’s when I feel impoverished.

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I’ve managed to create an existence that actually allows me to use my MFA in my working life, to continually work on my craft, and be the best mother I can be. Now that's real wealth.

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The kids are spending time with their dad this Labor Day weekend, so I have a long to-do list before me. Writing new poems is at the top of the list.

Thursday, September 03, 2009

School Daze

Just came back from pre-K and kindergarten orientations for Ella and Alex. They start school next week in two different schools. *sigh* Where does the time go?




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The Mom Egg accepted my poem, "What Mommy Wants." Woo hoo! Should be out in mid-October, before the book’s release.


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This week has been crazy at work and at home. So much to do with so little time to spare. However, tonight and over the long holiday weekend, I’ll have a chance to catch my breath (sans kids) and get some writing done. There’s a to-do list in my future.

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I don't have poems in circulation from Underlife because the book will be published soon, as many journals and zines will not take previously published work. And my newer stuff is in limbo until I revise it for publication. One more action item for the to-do list.

Tuesday, September 01, 2009

Confession Tuesday

Yes, it's the day that falls between Monday and Wednesday! Share a little something about yourself and we'll be sure to do the same. Also, say hello to our friends waiting for redemption in The Confessional.

Today started off with a two-hour commute to work. Nothing gets me out of sorts more than not getting to where I need to be on time. But I did have time to listen to a few podcasts from the Poetry Foundation and PBS's The News Hour with Jim Lerher, so at least my time wasn't a total waste.

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Speaking of work, it has shifted in overdrive now that the students are back on campus. I do feel that pull of work that takes me out of my creative space. Hope to find equilibrium at some point this week.

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The kids have been testing my patience on a regular basis. "No" seems to be their favorite word at the moment. I go through periods where the kids give me a hard time, so I find refuge at work. But by the end of the day, I can't wait to get out of the office and home to the kids. It's a vicious cycle, I tell you! *smile*

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I talk a lot about not having enough time for myself, but the truth is I'm pretty happy with my small corner of the universe.

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My mom and I were talking about my house, and it was nice to hear her say that someday she hopes I can turn it into the home I've always wanted. For now, I'm happy to fix the leaky roof, change the look of the living room, and buy a new front door. But it was just nice to hear someone say the things I've been thinking for a long time. Maybe I just liked having her share my point of view. Makes me feel less alone.

Thanks mom!

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Lots of things happening in my poetic life. I'm lining up interviews, setting up a few readings for the end of this year into spring 2010, and I just got word of a project with an art installation. It's a weird feeling, coming close to achieving a life goal. When the book comes out in November, it will be the start of a new chapter in my life. And I can't wait!

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My September to-do list promises to be ugly—lots to do, but it's all good. Will post it in a few days.

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