My birthday is on Friday. Get me the best gift ever. Pre-order my first book today!
Or, for the true poetry lover, buy a subscription for all four spring poetry releases for just $40. This gets you my book, Mysterious Acts by My People by Valerie Wetlaufer, TurnWendy Chin-Tanner, Only Ride by Megan Volpert, and Contemplative Man by Brock Guthrie.
You can also pre-order the first issue of Adrienne, the queer poetry journal I edit.
I emailed with Dr. Valerie Wetlaufer this morning about her chapbook nostrums: a handbook of the unborn, her work as a doula, and the relationship between birth culture and writing poetry.
Click over to read an interview with me about my latest chapbook!
In May, I left Utah, the place I lived the longest since leaving my childhood home. I have been moving ever since, transitory, never really in one place for long. Friday I moved into my first house, where I hope to stay as long as I can. It was built in 1926, and comes with all the attendant problems of an old house. I haven’t been writing too much since May. I was eager to finish graduate school, but now I find myself missing the PhD program, and the classes I took there, which gave me permission and excuse to write. Finding a way to make time for writing outside of academia feels hard. It feels selfish when there are so many other things to be done each day. I am learning that it is ok to be selfish. It is easier now that I am again living alone.
I started reading Lucie Brock-Broido’s new book of poems, Stay, Illusion. Ten years ago, when I first became a poet, her book A Hunger was my favorite book. It still is. Discovering this new book had been released, I gleefully downloaded it to my Kindle (because I couldn’t wait for the hard copy to arrive before delving in), and I felt my love for poetry reignited. I wanted to write again.
Grad school gets a bad rap for good reason, and the job market is disconcerting, but now that I’m getting settled in my own place, now that I have a desk again, and my books are being unpacked, I am remembering advice my first poetry professors gave me: the process itself must sustain you. If my happiness lies not with whatever I’m doing to earn a paycheck, but rather in how I show up on the page, then I have a shot at attaining that pleasure. I can control it, whereas I have no control over the state of the job market. (Not to say I don’t often get a great deal of fulfillment from teaching. That is another post, though.)
I’m happiest when I am writing. I don’t know why I keep forgetting this.
Poetry is a part of my every day life, but making time to write every day is incredibly valuable.
I’ve been working on the final edits of my book (coming out in FOUR MONTHS!!!) and putting together the first issue of Adrienne, the queer women’s poetry journal I edit for Sibling Rivalry Press. And now I am also figuring out what it means to be a writer without external forces of assignments and dissertations. It’s tricky, but important to make that time.