"What do you plan to do with your one, wild, precious life?" -Mary Oliver

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

To Tamper With The Truth (Banned Books Week)

It's that time of year again....Banned Books Week. Time to check out the ALA List of banned and challenged books and read a banned book. Jemi Fraser has an excellent post on this subject here, and then there's this passage for Three Word Wednesday from Rebecca,

To tamper with the truth
And court false tales . . .


Can you guess what banned book inspired these words? Check out Rebecca's blog to read her entry and find out.

I'm proud to say my local library has posted signs for Banned Books Week, challenging patrons to read one. I'm reading A PRAYER FOR OWEN MEANY. So what are you reading? Let's hear it for the mighty book!

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

When the Geese Fly

The geese have been flying overhead with their mournful honking. I can’t think of anything that more poignantly portends autumn than the migration of Canadian geese. And if a sound could describe the silent angst of the querying writer, it would be geese flying overhead. It was eighty degrees yesterday, but the geese tell it all. Then last night a powerful storm blew through the area and this morning my ferns lie broken on the impatiens (which aren’t long for this world), and I hang them back up wondering where I’ll put them come October.

I told myself that fall was a good time to start querying agents again. But now I have to think about my ten pages for the Literary Lab's Notes From Underground anthology and ponder where my little story is going. A short story is a semi-circle and doesn’t really end, but it has to go somewhere. I want my readers to sit back at the end of it all and say, “wow,” or at least, “hmmm.” I don’t want to let down those who expressed confidence in my ability to see it through. That, plus my second novel is gnawing at my inner consiousness. It currently has no ending whatsoever and has sat on the back burner since the geese last flew the other way. So how do you organize your writing life? What is more important, querying the old or losing yourself in the new? And if you juggle both, I'd like to hear about that too.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Notes From Underground

The Literary Lab recently held a Notes from Underground contest, and I am honored to have been selected for the anthology. It was an eclectic and somewhat intimidating contest, so I was jumping up and down this morning. So excited!! Please pop over to the Lab to see the others who won. I'm proud to be in their company.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

The Man In Black

I just realized that a true protest singer of the sixties, one who often collaborated with Bob Dylan and Joan Baez, was none other than the Man In Black, one I never thought of as a protest singer. After listening to an NPR special on American Roots, I know why Johnny Cash dressed in black. And sadly the reasons are still true today. This, from one of his songs,

I dress in black for all the downtrodden, for those who are serving time past the time their time is up because of the times.

I just wanted to throw that out there because I thought maybe some of you didn't know that either.

And for the downtrodden writer on the query quest, how about a different way of looking at rejection. With so much talk out there about rejection, how to handle it like a big girl and plod ahead without drowning yourself in drink or giving up the game to pursue something you don’t like as much, like waiting tables or nine-to-fiveing it, I like what Holly Root had to say recently on her blog.

"With so much talk about “rejection” on the internet, I sometimes wish that we could talk in terms of “decline” rather than “reject.” There’s no moral judgment here, just an opportunity I won’t be part of."

I like that. How about you?

Friday, September 3, 2010

A Ginsberg in our Midst?

The sky is gray and rumpled
low-hanging clouds skuttle
across the land without a shadow
taking their rain with them.

A day like this calls for a strong cup of coffee. Coffee and books and hours of writing. Autumn come!

I've been sitting on a few awards that I need to pass on and I will. I will, I promise, but right now all I can do is share with you an amazing poet and writer who is new to the blogosphere but obviously not to the power of the written word. You can check Alisa Dodge out here. You won't be sorry. I promise.