So, friends, it’s been awhile since I’ve done one these. Let me just dive right on in:
I happened across Wicked Plants: The Weed that Killed Lincoln’s Mother & Other Botanical Atrocities while flipping channels between educational shows one weekend. Even though I am not an avid gardener or especially interested in plants, I rushed to the library for a copy. And I have to say that it has been a really exciting read. Caught my mother making notes from it for the next Flower Patch mystery.
Also came across Louise Gluck’s Meadowlands at a used bookstore. Reading the books back-to-back before writing has produced some interesting poems, including one about Peter Peter Pumpkin-Eater and another about cesium poisoning in the Arctic via contaminated lichen.
Won several of the Big Poetry Book giveways from last month as well as one from Deep South Magazine. Haven’t got to all of those titles just yet. By the way, Deep South has great Literary Friday round-ups for those who are into Southern Lit.
Besides the giveaway books, with review copies I am literally swimming in poetry. But since my philosophy is that you can never have too much poetry, I am all smiles.
If you are a fan of my Sabotage round-ups, you’ll see reviews soon for titles from El Zarape Press, Mouthfeel Press and LSU Press. I won’t spoil the fun by revealing the specifics just yet.
On the submission front, tidy batches of poems have gone out to several journals, and I’m hoping to have some publication news on the chapbook(s) soon. Since it is now Short Story Month, I have been busily revising some of my short stories, including a dark fairy tale set in Cajun country that required some extra care in keeping the patois authentic.
Before the end of the month, I plan to get to Greg Sarris’ Grand Avenue: A Novel in Stories which I hope is as good as Watermelon Nights. I’ll try to post something on the blog when I’ve had time to digest.
On my other blog, I finally released the (Christian, character-focused) high school American history curriculum that I authored. And despite my fiction writing group falling apart, I have managed to add some new scenes to my novel-in-progress. More on this later.
Have just discovered the #FairyTaleFriday challenge on Twitter. This looks like it would be fun. Too late to start on the ‘tremor’ theme for today, but I hope to contribute something next week if time allows.
Despite all this writing, I have not given up on art. Below are two of my newest paintings. Pardon the terrible lighting! I usually wrangle my little brother into taking the photos. This is what you get when I do it myself. The colors are much more vibrant in person, trust me.
I have also nearly completed my paper-cuts series. The latest bunch incorporates fairytale themes and uses a pastel palette. Since most of the earlier works are out at journals and zines (and I hope to submit the latest round), you’ll have to wait for a sample.
Well, that pretty much does it for now.
If you’d like to contribute a GUEST POST on your creative life, please drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org.