The Pyrenees---Southern France

The Pyrenees---Southern France

Thursday, April 18, 2019

Mired in ???

I feel like I'm stuck in a tar pit. Not that I have an experience with that horror, but I mired in sticky stuff... stuff that's keeping me from moving forward with my writing.

I recently got a rejection in which the agent brought up the #OurVoices trend. If you're not familiar, that's the movement pushing for books that focus on LGBT characters be written by someone who identifies as LGBT. A book centering on a person of color? That should be written by a person of color.

As I read and contemplate and seek advice, I wonder: can a white person write a novel with a young African American as the main character? More importantly, can they create a nuanced character with respect and authenticity woven in?

In the next couple of months I'll be figuring out my next steps with my manuscript... and hopefully I can pull myself out of this tar pit very soon. 

Wednesday, April 3, 2019

Poetic Postings Day # 3

Today's prompt involved a list. Some suggestions: 10 things I'd change... 10 things I've learned... 10 things I know to be true.

The one I chose was this:

10 Things I Love

naps on Saturday afternoon
getting together with friends after work
a glass of cold milk
snuggling with my dog
watching a spur-of-the-moment movie with my husband
Tyrion Lannister
falling asleep with a good book in my hands
my students
salt and pepper pistachios
a road trip with a friend

Tuesday, April 2, 2019

Poetic Postings Day # 2

The best part of me
is underneath
honking and telling
rude drivers
they're number one

The best part of me
is hidden by sarcasm
and snarky remarks
and shrugging off 
the pain

The best part of me
is often misread

The best part of me
is given freely
but rarely accepted

When you see me 
hunched over, writing

When you see me
and praising students

When you see me
gush over my granddaughter...

You're seeing my best

Monday, April 1, 2019

Poetic Postings Day # 1

April is here. I've accepted a poetry challenge. A poem. Every. Day. (What have I gotten myself into? ;)

This poem is inspired by my son and daughter-in-law's foster baby. This young man is three months old and was born two months premature... and he's such a doll.

Big brown eyes
Just learning to side-eye

Fingers so incredibly long
and skinny
I just know you'll be a musician
some day

Beautiful skin,
Like milk chocolate
Legs that never quite relax--
Just like  your arms

Two months premature
is way early
You were all chill in
your mama's swimming pool
of a tummy
you've got to find your way


Someday you'll grab a handful
of life
(not just my finger)
and this tenuous beginning
will be behind you,
leaving not even a wispy memory

But until someday comes along,
there's today

Sunday, March 31, 2019

Slice of Life Day # 31: What is Art... and What is Next?

Yesterday I sat in the Contemporary Art Museum St. Louis for most of the morning. I overlooked a huge sculpture. I'd write. I'd glance up and look across the gallery. I'd write. I'd scan the pieces that were part of the artwork, then I'd chat to a writer friend who sat next to me. I'd write some more.

Here is a view of part of the piece:

Here is another view:

Some people might not think this is truly art. I used to think that, but over the decades, I've changed... been transformed, which I think is such an integral part of art. If it's transforms, if it makes us think or reflect or talk with others... if it's an expression of the artist, it's art (at least in my opinion).

Today is the last slice from me (don't cheer too loudly. I know some of my slices have been sour or bland). Beginning tomorrow I'll be posting a poem every day. We'll see how much inspiration I can whip up for myself on a daily basis.

Saturday, March 30, 2019

Slice of Life Day 30: Yeah, I've Been Lax...

Well, it's almost the end of my (almost) daily Slice postings... and something next will start in April: daily powerful poetic postings (Say that five times, and say it quickly.)  Okay, the poems I come up with might not be powerful, but I needed another "p" word to put into that string.

Right this minute (Saturday morning, 10:09) I am sitting in the Contemporary Arts Museum St. Louis. In front of me: a huge sculpture display of charcoal gray cylinders (gigantic) strewn across the enormous gallery. 

All around me: the sound of voices and music blended. The voices are distorted enough that they're not distracting. I can't make out what they're saying, so I can't fixate on their message instead of my writing. 

Behind me: A rainy, dreary day.

Just like I will begin something new on April 1--blogging-wise--I will begin something new in August. This week I snagged a job. The school I'll be working at next school year is suuuuch an easier commute for me. Currently, to avoid traffic jams, I drive over incredibly rough roads--where other drivers (along with me) drive at such high speeds, it's like the German autobahn, even though none of the streets are highways.

It might not be the best job, money-wise, but it felt like the best place for me, and it came about so easily. The principal wanted to meet me before setting up an interview... I knew what his motives are. I've been teaching for so many years, I know he wanted to see if I was a little blue-haired lady using a walker to get around. Obviously I passed the she-fogged-up-the-mirror test...

 I got a tour with the principal, we talked as we walked, he asked if I had spoken to any other schools (trying to sniff if there was blood in the water), and then said he'd love to offer me a contract.

A. Maz. Ing.

A new school. A new community to build. A new/old subject to teach (social studies). I am so looking forward to it.