Wednesday, November 24, 2010

A Thankful Post a Day Early :-)

So tomorrow i'm going to be scrambling, trying to get the turkey in the oven, house cleaned and spiffied up for company, and proabably stressing like a mad woman at HEB with the crowds of other procrastinators. I likely won't have a moment to think about what I'm thankful for...

but today I do :-) See, that's the beauty of serious procrastination. The calm before the storm. As I sit in my office this morning, I could think of all I have to complain about - having to be here at work on this lovely Wednesday while most of my family's off, I could complain about my lack of inspiration lately - my poetically dry disposition. I could also complain about my low pay, the messy house I have to go home to tonight - or the oodles of money I had to drop to host this stinkin' thanksgiving dinner... grumble grumble... I could complain about a lot of things :-P

But... I won't (ok... maybe I just did).

Instead - I'll be thankful that I have a job, one I actually enjoy
I'll be thankful that I have the luxury of poetry, no matter how badly it treats me sometimes ;)
I'll be thankful that there's money in the bank - enough to get buy.
I'll be thankful that I have a place to go home to, with a wonderful bruno, and many many cats (who are healthy, I am thankful for their health and my own)
I am thankful that I have a family ~ a great one.
I'm thankful that I'm able to host a thanksgiving :-) At my beautiful house, with my beautiful family. The weather will be beautiful, and the house will smell delicious.

Tomorrow'll be a whirlwind of a day - so today I'll just be thankful that it's hours away X-D

So life's good. I'm getting better at accepting that.

This year, if nothing else, I've learned to be thankful for everyday. Each day we're here is a gift, and it is our responsiblity to use it wisely and never, never take it for granted.

This year, I'm thankful for life - and having the eyes to watch life bloom before me.

Monday, November 22, 2010

On Turning 24

So... yay I turned 24 on Saturday!

If you've followed my blog even a little bit, you'll know I'm the type of person who thrives on setting goals, and looking back to see how many I've accomplished. It's an obsession, and one that sometimes gets taken to the extreme. But, birthdays always make me think. God's graced me with another year of life. What on earth did I do with it? Am I a good keeper of my own time?

I told me dad - put your years to work for you, or else they'll slip away. He looked at me a little weird. I guess it IS a little weird to think of your time in that manner. But really, honestly, I can't help it. I'm incapable of enjoying moments of peace and nothingness. Every moment must be purposeful, because you know - we never know how long we have here.

So... what did I do with year 23 of my life? Well... this time last year I was on a 'break' from grad school. Ok - so I admit it was a break because not only was I broke financially but emotionally as well. I was tired of writing, of scrambling, of feeling the pressure. I needed some time to step back and reevaluate.

And I did :-) When I turned 23, I was ready to get back into the swing of things. I was determined to graduate, to publish, to grow professionally.

I remember the holidays last year,
I remember on New Years Eve - how I got the call from Mouthfeel Press about Among the Mariposas being selected for publication.
I remember being there for Bruno when his father was sick, and eventually when he passed away.
I remember grieving, the slow process of healing.
I remember returning to grad school,
publishing publishing in Borderlands, even in the Monitor, and most recently in Cold Mountain Review
I remember cherishing my contributor copies ;)
I remember the Valley International Poetry Festival :-D My dynamite reading at Barnes and Noble with the book fair, reading at Savory Perks, reading reading reading everywhere that would have me.
I remember beginning to write for Chachalacas in Orbit :-D
I remember being ill, and afraid.
I remember conferences - going to UTSA twice
I remember starting my new 2nd job, feeling overwhelmed and then getting used to it
I remember beginning my thesis, feeling overwhelmed, and getting used to that, too.
I remember frustration, in many things.
I remember talking with Bruno... many times, about the next step, where will we go?
I remember uncertainty.
I remember healing.

I think 23 for me was a year of healing - a year of triumphs. It was a wonderful year. God - I hope that you agree, I've put it to good use.

I'm thankful and blessed with each day here on earth. I'm vowing never to forget that.

Well, I know sometimes I can get a little 'pie in the sky' idealist, but umm... back on earth I have a tidbit of news to share.

The post is up concerning the Cosina del Caribe reading. I'm excited! You can find all the gooey little details here: http://chachalacasinorbit.com/2010/11/cocina-del-caribe-poetry-reading/

Come check us out if you have a chance :-) It'll be a good time, ok?

Ok! With that I'm signing off. My last appointment before lunch is here~ nomnomnom!

Monday, November 15, 2010

Submitted to Nimrod

Yay!

Its out in the mail and I can't take it back now :-)

So I submitted about 8 poems to them for their horticulture issue. It just seemed too perfect with my plant obsession as of late. So let's see if anything comes of this.

Hmm... what else? Oh! I have a reading coming up. And I'm blogging about it on Chachalacas In Orbit! My latest post should be up pretty soon. I'm going to be reading at a Caribbean restaurant along with my poetry professor and some fellow students. My mom might even be showing some art :D so she's psyched about that, too. Details certainly to come.

Hmm... I guess that's about it. Just in general, things are looking up for me. I applied for a teaching position at a university (hah, yeah...right!) which I know is a SUPER longshot but whatever I had to try. And I'm studying my GRE again... I'm giving myself more time, and resolving not to stress about PhD applications until next year. I get overwhelmed so very easily, and it was really really really stressing me out to the point that I was becoming unproductive and ill again.

So I'm taking a big step back, a deep breath, and I'm going to nibble away at it one tiny piece at a time. I'm going to apply next year. Deep breath, Katie. You can and will so totally do this ;)

On a lighter note, I believe I have found the perfect fall boot.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

So I Kind of Had Fun At El Mundo Zurdo



And of course I must post some pictures!


Ok, first one's my Mouthfeel Press panel! There's ire'ne lara silva, me, lau, and maria maloney (my publisher!)


So I totally didn't control myself and I totally had to hug everyone. I'm a dork, a complete valley girl but that's ok I've come to terms with myself.





And here's >>>
me reading at Gallista Gallery! We went there afterwards, and all the talented poets read! Well, the talented poets and me... LOL.
Ok, so honestly yes I had a great time at El Mundo Zurdo. It was all about the poems, true, but for me it was all about meeting people, too. I met all the wonderful ladies at my press (who were incredibly friendly and nice), plus leaders in the field, other talented poetas, and just plain old smart people.
It was a blast! Oh, and most importantly - I DROVE ;)
YES, I did it and I did NOT have a nervous breakdown along the way. Phew, so proud! I think mostly it was thanks to my GPS. That way I didn't have to worry about getting lost in a big city like San Antonio (which is big compared to little sleepy Edinburg/McAllen, ok?!).
Oh! And I've been writing poems, too~~~~
Some my accomplishments are as follows:
1. mustered up the courage to drive
2. presented successfully at conference with many smart people in attendance
3. read at gallista gallery in san antonio with performance poets, felt intimidated and nervous, but did it anyway!
4. wrote new poem, that i kind of love.
5. made huge progress on thesis. my professor was proud of me :D
I'm feeling good~ so good~ right now. With the recent pubs, my conference experience, my thesis progress, things are finally starting to come together again. I'm myself again~
Phew. And it's a good thing, too.
So what are my goals for the remainder of the month?
I vow to:
Send out submissions to Columbia Poetry and Nimrod
Write two new poems
Edit my workshopped poems
Not think about PhD anymore until I finish MFA.
Yeah, that's right. I need to put it on the backburner for awhile. I was getting way too overwhelmed, and it wasn't good for me.
So for now, keep it simple~
And I'll be just fine :-)

Thursday, November 4, 2010

PUBBED AGAIN!

Hurray!

"We are so pleased to accept “Good Girls” for publication in the upcoming issue of /Cold Mountain Review/."

Ahh! I'm so unbelievably happy right now~!!

This little email just sent me to the sky and back X-D X-D X-D

You see, there I was, just studying away for my GRE exam, in slight agony, when my phone went BEEEEP.

I was angry because, well, I was in the middle of looking up what the heck scintillate means, when I opened up my email and there it was, titiled "YOUR POEM WAS ACCEPTED"

ZOMG! I even have to sign a CoNtRaCt!

So yes, I'm a dork, I know. I did a little research on the magazine, and it is so totally professional. Among the other contributors are creative writing professors, award winning novelists and poets, and even a Gugenheim Fellow.

How is my little bitty poem, "Good Girls" going to look next to those? Pathetic. But whatever! It's pubbed, I'm estatic, and I'm giving myself the rest of the day off from gre study~!!!

Oh, check out Cold Mountain Review HERE:

http://www.coldmountain.appstate.edu/index.html

Excited for tomorrow~

Yay!

I'm excited for tomorrow's conference. I'm excited to leave the valley for a day, meet lots of talented authors and scholars, and see the lovely riverwalk again. Once I get over the whole driving on the expressway deal, I think its going to be a bit like a mini vaycay.

I'm reading at 4:30, and again at 7:30 at Gallerista Gallery, UTSA Downtown Campus.

Anyway, I was writing an extended bio today about myself for the conference. I realized something, I sound like a mildly interesting person! :D lol. Here's what I pounded out between student appointments:

Katherine Hoerth is an MFA candidate at the University of Texas Pan
American. Her first chapbook of poems, Among the Mariposas
(Mouthfeel Press, 2010), received the Nuestra Voz Poetry Prize. The chapbook
speaks to living in the borderlands, belonging, and forging an identity along
the muddy waters of the Rio Grande. Her poetry has most recently appeared in
Borderlands: Texas Poetry Review, and the Texas Journal of Women Writers. She
regularly contributes to a Rio Grande Valley arts blog: Chacalacas in Orbit (www.chachalacasinorbit.com)

Katherine currently teaches English at the University of Texas Pan
American, and advises incoming freshmen English majors. She works with the
Upward Bound program to help promote post secondary education to low income,
migrant, and minority high school students. She has also taught English to
recent immigrants in Santa Rosa, Texas and served as chief editor to UTPA’s
Gallery Magazine. Through both her work and her writing, Katherine is committed
to serving her community in the Rio Grande Valley by promoting the arts,
education, and change to help break the cycle of poverty that all too often
snuffs out the dreams of many young people.

Katherine is currently working on her MFA thesis, titled The Tip of the
Tasting Tongue, which is a manuscript of poems dealing with border and gender
identity. She plans to graduate in May 2011. She can be reached on her
personal blog at (www.katiehoerth.blogspot.com) or
at kghoerth@utpa.edu


Wednesday, November 3, 2010

ZOMG I'M GOING TO BE 24 THIS MONTH

Just thought I'd share.

Katie's many fears.

Things that scare me:

1. A PhD - because it means the end of the road, that there's nothing left to teach me and if by that point i'm not brilliant then... well... I'm officially a dunce.

2. The GRE - MUST SCORE 700 MUST SCORE 700... stupid powerprep software is depressing me :( all the sudden I feel very very dumb.

3. Rejection letters that tumble in daily, though now I've learned to just delete them

4. My thesis, which piles up and gets bigger every day. I don't know how to break it down into bite sized pieces of work, and time is tick ticking away.

5. My professors. They're smart, confusing, and completely unhelpful at times. Ok, I'm a big girl and should take more responsiblity for my own education - yes I get the point.

6. Driving on the expressway. Nuff said.

7. Being in a big city, getting mugged, walking around at night, getting lost, missing the bus, crying in public... yeah, all stuff I will likely do.

8. Meeting new people, and not knowing what to say to them - so awkwardly hugging them.

9. My second job, which stinks at times but is wonderfully beautiful too.

10. Life, in general. It's big.

11. Anything unknown, which is like everything for me at the moment, including what I'm going to eat for dinner.


What I vow to do with these fears:

get them down on paper, crumple them up, and throw them in the trash. My fears will NOT keep me from becoming the person I know I need to be.

Ah... ok so confesison time, I'm kind of getting ready for my regularly scheduled nervous breakdown. I feel like everything's just piling up on my chest, closing in. Gwah I'm going to vomit.

I'll get through this - one way or another. Bruno had some good advice for me in regards to the whole PhD application process thingamajiggie - to apply for jobs, too. Because - maybe I really am too young, naive, and inexperienced to take on this monumental task. Maybe a few years in the workforce (academia, of course) will do me a bit of good.

I mean, my wisdom teeth haven't even grown in yet. LoL. Another fear - them ruining my lovely smile.

On a lighter note - while I am completely a nervous wreck over driving there, I will be heading out to San Antonio on Friday for El Mundo Zurdo :D I will meet new people (like my editor who is kind of my hero) and no, I will not run up to them and hug them like the naive valleyite I've become.

Also, I've been writing. Yes, yes I have : ) And it's good stuff, too! I think... anyway. Ah... maybe a bit of stress is good for the creative juices.

Maybe. But probably not.

Ok nuff for today :D I've officially ranted.