Thursday, May 25, 2006

To Those Interested In A Writing Group...

Hello everybody. I really meant to post this right away, after the semester ended, but my father-in-law had a heart attack the day we got our portfolios back, so, that sort of drove everything from my mind. Anyway, this is about the writing group I mentioned before. Is everybody still game? Here's my idea: we get a bunch of people together (all of us writers, so feel free to invite others if you think they'll enjoy it) maybe once a month, not always at the same place (take turns hosting or something, I don't know), and do a workshop sort of thing. I discussed this (briefly) with Chris, because she had asked if it was going to be strictly fiction or if other styles would be okay (poetry, non-fiction, et al). I don't want this to be too specific, as far as saying it has to be short stories or it has to be this or that or whatever, but instead leave it up to the writer to decide what to write, and the only thing the rest of us need to worry about is the workshop aspect of it.

The reasoning behind this is, to me anyway, that the workshop helps me understand my own writing better, and I guess it does the same for the rest of you. As writers, we're always striving for something, wether it be the perfect story or the perfect moment in the story, or the perfect line of poetry, or capturing the way you felt when your uncle tossed you into the pool though you couldn't swim and you were wearing cuordoroy pants and spiderman boots (not that that ever happened to me...), or whatever. I ramble, sorry. See, I think our first workshop could be done solely on this e-mail alone. Anyway, if people are still interested, e-mail me back, and we'll try to work out some details somehow. I would love to maybe get some better way of getting in touch with people, something more instantaneous and interactive (oh god, I sound like a technofile all of a sudden...I'm talking about a group message board, ack!). We'll think of something. Right now, I am thinking maybe one Sunday a month, get together, have some food, some drinks, some readings and lively discussions, and of course only the occasional throwing of something breakable to the ground accompanied by screams of "You just don't get my writing, nobody does! I'm the next f*cking Faulkner and you're all just too blind to see!"

Also, as I said, if you have any friends you think may be interested not from class, feel free to invite them along. And, in addition, um, Mark and Angelic...I seem to have misplaced everybody's e-mail from fall semester. Well, except for you two. Bad e-managment on my part. Anyway, yes. So, an almost carbon-copy of this e-mail is going into my blog and on my myspace profile (there's that technofile thing again) and hopefully that gets the word out a bit more.

Hope to hear from you all soon!

Music to Blog By: The Stranglers - Golden Brown

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Amen, Gerald

I totally agree.

Just thought I'd share that with everybody.

Thursday, May 11, 2006

Norfolk, NE

This seems to be a recurring theme, huh? I write a post and the title is, enigmatically at first, just the name of a city and a state. And so, the pondering begins. Is Elliot visiting relatives? Is he imagining another town for his fiction?

My father-in-law went in for surgery on Tuesday. This was planned, because he had bone spurs on his spine that had to be removed, because they were causing him a lot of pain. He was unable to walk or lie flat. So, on Tuesday evening, just as they were finishing the surgery (which went well except for the fact that his bones were tougher than expected), he had a heart attack. Terrifying, yes, but right place and right time. They were able to respond instantaneously. My mother-in-law began the calls around 7:30, going down the list of her ten children, so Kathy was number 7 (but got told 8th because Dan lives in Norfolk) and we were called close to 8. We made plans to leave immediately.

I would like to, at this point, thank Target. I called to let them know I had to go out of town for a few days, and that I would miss my Thursday and Friday shifts. I was told that family is important and that it would be no problem.

We left first thing Wednesday morning, arrived just as they were removing his breathing tube, so he could talk. All ten kids are here now (well, the two youngest are back home, because they have school in the morning but they were here) and everything is looking up, but still. What a harrowing experience for everybody. It's nice to see how much this family cares and it's great that we can smile and laugh and act so normal in the face of things. It's great, it's fantastic, and I think, down the road, I may have a story to write about it.

Greetings from Nebraska.

Saturday, May 06, 2006

Tuesday, May 02, 2006


So, I turned in my Fiction Writing portfolio today. Of course, having turned it in, I wish I had it back so I could do a little bit more work, but Angela (that's my teacher, Angela Hamilton. That is her name and she is my teacher) will just have to deal with it as is. Or rather, I will have to deal with it as is.

I apologize, Mark (that's my friend, Mark Baier. That is his name and he is my friend) for volunteering you to read today when you didn't have the right glasses. You did a great job of 700 Club Bashing. That aside, I look forward to reading the rest of your stories, all that you have to write from now on.

And now, an ode to those others who read today (should they ever find my blog):

Ryan, your writing is vivid and visual, and I'm glad I sat next to you, because your doodling kept me usefully entertained.

Monique, of course now I want to read the whole thing. I know you weren't thrilled with story two, but I sure did like it, and story three was no different.

Caroline, even moreso with the revisions, your writing (of that particular story) holds a wonderful tone of a child's innocence, which I am sure I could probably not pull off in my writing anymore. I applaud and admire you for that.

Matt S., your writing jumps off the page. I wish I had gotten the opportunity to read more of your work. Thanks for pouring my soda, too. Nice form.

Jeff, keep working, you will continue to improve. I was impressed with the progress on story one from our first workshop.

Chris, as always your writing invites me to close my eyes and watch. You make it play across the mind's eye, and it's because you are such a strong poet that makes you such a strong fiction writer.

Music to Blog by: Paul Simon - 50 Ways to Leave Your Lover
Arctic Monkeys - When The Sun Goes Down
Planet Smashers - Life of the Party

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