Thursday, September 29, 2011

Words from a Master

"A work in progress quickly becomes feral. It reverts to a wild state overnight... it is a lion growing in strength. You must visit it every day and reassert your mastery over it. If you skip a day, you are, quite rightly, afraid to open the door to its room. You enter its room with bravura, holding a chair at the thing and shouting, ‘Simba!’"
~Annie Dillard

Friday, September 16, 2011

Of Friends, Stones, and Gratitude

You know, you just know who your friends are, because they are always there when you need them. They call you on your shit. They knock sense into you when you need it.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Changing the World, One Poem at a Time

Since last spring, I have been getting to know a group of poets from all over the world on Facebook, thanks to the efforts of San Francisco Bay-area poet, Michael Rothenberg, and his amazing project, 100 Thousand Poets for Change.

Friday, September 2, 2011

Send Shit Out Night

I have been submitting my work to literary journals since 2003 (although only recently have they begun to publish me; the photo at right depicts my stack of rejection letters next to the seventh Harry Potter book, for scale, and these are only the hard copy rejections -- there are plenty more that have come via email*). As someone who has been playing the submission game for quite a while, I've created a system. I read the ads in Poets & Writers and The Writer's Chronicle to find journals that my work seems to fit. I check their guidelines online, then address the cover letter. I print my essay. I use my best handwriting on a large manila envelope and the SASE tucked inside, record the submission on a spreadsheet (a hard copy, even!), mail those over-sized envelopes after standing in a long line at the post office, and then wait anywhere from several weeks to 18 months for a response.