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Showing posts from August, 2016

Back at work!

So, today was my first day back at work for the fall 2016 semester.

It was a little bittersweet. Ok, more bitter than sweet. It's going to take a bit of an adjustment to get back into the swing of things, apparently. Even though it was just for a meeting/professional development, the day felt crazy long for my body. Ugh. Maybe it's because last night I ran six miles. Maybe it's because I'm not used to getting out of bed before 10am. Maybe it's because today I had to sit for about five hours, which I'm not used to, which means my back gets achy. Anyway, whatever. I'm wiped out.

This isn't exactly an ideal start to the semester, but hopefully by the time my actual classes begin on Monday, I'll be used to it again. I figure now's as good as a time as any to set up some goals for the semester.

1. Perhaps most importantly, I want to keep up my routine of writing. I want to be able to produce something every week, to make measurable progress. I think …

Summertime Reflection

Ah, yes, it's about that time of the year...

My work email is bustling once again, the school buses wind through my cul-du-sac every morning and afternoon, and I'm digging out my syllabi with a mixture of elation and dread. Yesterday, while revamping my Rhetoric and Composition syllabus, I had some sort of a mini-panic attack as I pieced together my semester. Yikes.

Before moving onto the next phase, it's important for me to reflect on the season that's passing. As a writing teacher, I'm always stressing the importance of self-reflection. So, it's time for me to practice what I preach, although, really, this blog is like one big enormous public self-reflection on my writing self. 

This summer began a bit rocky, but in the end, I think it's been my best, most productive, most fulfilling (creatively... and let's face it, otherwise too) yet. I eased into a routine of daily writing. I learned that inspiration is a habit, a muscle. I wrote like a madwoman, spen…

Collaborations and Ekphrasis

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This summer has been amazingly fruitful. Amazingly.

I'm not really sure how or why, but I've just been on a roll lately in terms of inspiration and a simple will to write. It's been insane. Seriously. I feel like I have a little idea generator going on inside me and I can't shut it off. Not that I'd want to, of course. It's so easy to chalk it all up to magic, some external muse that keeps me going and going, but I think it's a little more complex than that.

First of all, of course, I had a clear(ish) direction of my manuscript in the beginning of these summer months and a real desire to wrap it up. That motivation carried me through all of May, June and the second half of July. When I finally handed it off and declared it done, though, I wasn't really left with that "now what?" feeling.

I think the reason is quite serendipitous, actually. As I was finishing up my summer class, I received a curious email from an artist who was working on her …

Summertime Submission Tally

Well, one of my goals this summer was to send out more submissions. I wanted to submit to at least 20 venues. Let's see how I did. Here are the venues I submitted to from May 1st through today!

1. Cimarron Review (Rejected)
2. Codex (pending)
3. Switchgrass Review (Accepted!)
4. FRiGG (Rejected)
5. Hermeneutric (Rejected)
6. Southwestern Review (pending)
7. Rattle (pending)
8. Summerset (Pending)
9. Blue Earth Review (pending)
10. Bat City (rejected)
11. Panoply (rejected)
12. Lunch Ticket (pending)
13. Collagist (Pending)
14. Autumn Sky (rejected)
15. Adriot (rejected)
16. TAB (pending)
17. Waccamaw (pending)
18. Alyss (Accepted!)
19. Poetry South (pending)
20. New Yorker (dreaming)
21. Poetry (dreaming)
22. Concho River Review (Accepted)
23. Rust Moth (rejected)
24. Indianola (Accepted!)
25. Barcopa (Rejected)
26. The Journal (rejected)
27. Redactions (pending)
28. Swamp Ape (pending)
29. Account (pending)
30. Qu (pending)
31. Southern Poetry Review (pending)
32. Thrush (reject)

Edward's Book Release Party

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What a blast of an evening!
Last Wednesday, August 3rd, I had the pleasure of throwing my good friend, Edward Vidaurre, a book release party. We'd been planning this sucker for a little over a month now, and it was so wonderful to see it all come to fruition. Numerous special guests took the stage, including PW Covington, Brian Allen Carr, Odilia Galvan Rodriguez, Julieta Corpus, Cesar De Leon and Daniel Garcia Ordaz. We had about fifty or so people in attendance.
Edward, of course, gave an amazing reading as per always.
We also had a wonderful musical guest, Mr. Jose Sanchez, perform for us. 
I was the M.C! Or the G.C -- I hate the word "mistress" of ceremonies, so I'm changing it to Goddess of ceremonies.
Anyway, I don't think there was a better way to spend a summer evening than on the patio, drinking good beer, in the best company imaginable. Was it a lot of work? You betcha it was. Will I do it again? Of course. My next event is already in the works! Likely…

FORTHCOMING: The Lost Chronicles of Slue Foot Sue

So it's official(ish!) 
My next manuscript, The Lost Chronicles of Slue Foot Sue, has been accepted for publication by Lamar University Literary Press and is slated for release in early 2017. 
Commence the happy dancing!
I'm incredibly proud of of this manuscript. Truly. 
The book revisions tales from Texas folklore from a contemporary feminist perspective and provides some much needed context to the women of legend in the state. I know I've been yapping on and on about the book over here on the blog as it's gone from little idea to full fledged manuscript and all spaces in between, but it really has been an incredible, educational, and downright enjoyable journey for me. I'm confident in this book, and I'm excited to see what the world thinks of it.
I last left off at the point of restructuring the order of my poems, which I spent a couple of days doing. The result was a four chapter piece, each chapter concentrating on a separate legend. The new structure, I …