Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Today is and so is tomorrow

The deadline date for contests and submissions, so I've got to get writing. Have a good one:)

Writing quote for 1/31/07

If you wish to be a writer, write.


Quote for 1/31/07

Each of us literally chooses, by his way of attending to things, what sort of universe he shall appear to himself to inhabit.

-- William James

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Quote for 1/30/07

The soul is dyed the color of its thoughts. The content of your character is your choice. Day by day, what you choose, what you think, and what you do is who you become. Your integrity is your destiny. It is the light that guides your way.


Writing quote for 1/30/07

. . . the act of writing with serious intent involves enormous personal risk. It means one will walk forver on the tightrope, with each new step presenting the possibility of learning a truth about oneself that is too terrible to bear.

--Harlan Ellison

Monday, January 29, 2007

Writing quote for 1/29/07

There is no royal path to good writing; and such paths as exist do not lead through neat critical gardens, various as they are, but through the jungles of self, the world, and of craft.

--Jessamyn West

Quote for 1/29/07

You must have control of the authorship of your own destiny. The pen that writes your life story must be held in your own hand.

--Irene C. Kassorla

Sunday, January 28, 2007

Not one flake for poor little me :(

It snowed again in Las Cruces. Aaaaaaaaaaaargh!

I was at the bank, opening an account and the representative asked what brought me to Arizona and I listed the reasons I'm aware of, but I was quick to add that I was planning to move to Vermont (she told me that Bank of America recently purchased banks in New England so I won't have to worry about my banking needs once I get there!) because I like cold and snow and rain. I mentioned that now that I no longer lived in Las Cruces, they've gotten frequent snow and she asked if I hadn't seen the snow flurries earlier in the day. (it's been cold in AZ lately.)


I was indoors, at work, no windows near me.

"I saw them!" my daughter piped up.

"You like the snow and cold too?" the woman asked her.

"No," she replied. "I like it when it's warm."


I would have appreciated those flakes, even if, as I was told, they melted as soon as they hit the ground.

Quote for 1/28/07

Everything you can imagine is real.

--Pablo Picasso

Writing quote for 1/28/07

One has to live a life that creates a writer.

--Erno Paasilinna

A very late post about the Cowboys

That last game was way exciting and really (in all sincerity) too bad Romo's feet weren't as quick as his thinking.

yes, no, no & other writing misc.

"Too Human," which appeared in a print journal will be reprinted online in Kaleidowhirl. A micro (I'm so glad was) rejected is now off to a contest and the other reject gave me opportunity to rethink the work 'cause it needed some tightening. I'm going to wait until tomorrow to send it somewhere just to be sure it's ready.

I will be in San Antonio reading on Feb. 11. It is something of a paying gig:) Also following yet another reading possibility.

I mentioned before how I wanted to turn this short story about a drug addict who falls for a drug dealer into a short novel, The story is "Angel Wings" -- a former NY police officer is going to show me around Brooklyn and help me out on that end when I get to NY (I met him on a previous NY trip) and the FBI agent is going to help me about the part with running guns across the US/Mexico border. Today I was talking to this guy and he said he was from Brooklyn and I said, "Oh, I might be asking you for information 'cause I've got this book about this addict who falls for a drug dealer and he's supposed to be from Brooklyn and the guy says, "What a coincidence-- I used to be a drug dealer in Brooklyn." Nothing like a bit of authenticity to make a work come alive!

Still plugging away, kinda sorta, on that 100 stories. # 67 and 68 are unfinished/underdeveloped drafts from a forms & techniques class I took with Robert Boswell back at NMSU. Will find the stories that are there. I need to research 15 of the stories, but I'm hoping for a mass mailing, say 40-45, by March, many, yes, to print journals.

I'm still working on my hair so the pic for the Amazon shorts program is still on hold but the guy I spoke to there said that once a writer is in the program, he/she is in the program, so the story is still accepted and I would love to send another, but I'd feel kind of dumb sending a second or a third when I haven't completed the process for the first.

Saturday, January 27, 2007

Writing quote for 1/27/07

And by the way, everything in life is writable about if you have the outgoing guts to do it, and the imagination to improvise. The worst enemy to creativity is self-doubt.

--Sylvia Plath

Quote for 1/27/07

Freedom is not worth having if it does not include the freedom to make mistakes.

--Mahatma Gandhi

Friday, January 26, 2007

Creative quote for 1/26/07

If you can dream it, you can do it.

-- Walt Disney

Quote for 1/26/07

If the only prayer you said in your whole life was, thank you, that would suffice.

--Meister Eckhart

Thursday, January 25, 2007

Oh, and maybe another anthology

A short story has made the short list. Hoping, hoping, hoping. . .

Writing today ALL day

Last night, around 11:15, while I'm riding home, a story (# 69) starts tugging at me and I was, like, 'please, must we do this.' I was so tired. Scrounged around in my bag until I found something to write with-- eight pencils and every one has a broken tip--and jotted down the opening paragraphs.

Today I'm going to try to finish the rough drafts of #'s 62, 63, 64, 65, work on 69 [heh heh, I like that idea;-)] --what? I'm talking about that story that was calling me last night. What are YOU thinking? --and start #70. Please notice the word "try." I submitted #66 yesterday.

On my way to post office to drop a chapbook into the Nerve Cowboy competition.

Then it's back to writing writing and more writing.

Quote for 1/25/07

The deeper that sorrow carves into your being the more joy you can contain. Is not the cup that holds your wine the very cup that was burned in the potter's oven?

Kahlil Gibran

Creativity quote for 1/25/07

It is better to create than to be learned, creating is the true essence of life.

--Barthold Georg Niebuhr

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Quote for 1/24/07

Treat your friends as you do your pictures and place them in their best light.

--Jennie Jerome Churchill

Writing quote for 1/24/07

When I'm writing -- that's when I face the exposure, that's when the right word comes, or the temptation to use the wrong word and duck out, the temptation to skip something. That's when I always have to bear down and try to write as closely to what is the truth as I can feel with my senses and with my heart.

--Andre DuBus

I have to work tomorrow

A long day, so I'll post quotes now. Have a great day:)

Quote for 1/23/07

People living deeply have no fear of death.

--Anais Nin

Creative quote for 1/23/07

The essence of all beautiful art, all great art, is gratitude

-- Friedrich Nietzsche

You wake up, sit down at the computer

and a story writes itself. Hey, I like that. Yes, it's a micro, but it's still a story and that makes #66.

Monday, January 22, 2007

!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Another reading !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I'm going to be the featured poet! Details once I have them. This time I'm heading to Texas.

Remember last year when I said that I wanted to read every month?--I'm thinking instead I want to cover the 50 states. Maryland is done, Florida, California, New Mexico, New York. Washington D.C. is upcoming, even though it's not a state. (It's not right? I've always been confused on that.) Anyway, I'm thrilled I'm thrilled I'm thrilled!

Writing quote for 1/22/07

One of the few things I know about writing is this: spend it all, shoot it, play it, lose it, all, right away every time.

-- Annie Dillard

Quote for 1/22/07

Life now sings through me in radiant ecstasy.

-- Ernest Holmes

Sunday, January 21, 2007

Quote for 1/21/07

At times our own light goes out and is rekindled by a spark from another person. Each of us has cause to think with deep gratitude of those who have lighted the flame within us.

--Albert Schweitzer

Writing quote for 1/21/07

Like stones, words are laborious and unforgiving, and the fitting of them together, like the fitting of stones, demands great patience and strength of purpose and particular skill.

-- Edmund Morrison

Saturday, January 20, 2007

Binnacle Ultra short competition

Ultra-Short Competition
2006-07 Competition

The Binnacle will sponsor its Fourth International Ultra-Short Competition in the 2006-2007 academic year. We are looking for poetry of sixteen lines or less and prose works of 150 words or less.

All submissions should be made via email to Please include the work in the body of the email message, if possible. If you would like to send it via attachment, we prefer ,doc, .txt, or rtf files.

A minimum of $300 in cash prizes will be awarded, with a minumum prize of $50. At least one of the prizes will go to a UMM student.

Please submit no more than two works total, prose and/or poetry.

When you submit your work, please be sure to include your postal address as well as a thirty-five to fifty word self-description.

There is no submission fee. Deadline for submission is February 15, 2007.) Notifications will be made around May 15, 2007. Publication date will be May, 2007, but printing may not be completed until October, 2007 (maybe even a bit later). Awards will be made at the time of publication.

A solicitation from a fellow writer whom I admire/a woman I adore who is guest-editing a magazine I admire. All kinds of performance anxiety going on there! But, let's see what happens when I step up to the plate.

Am spending the day (and the next and the next and the next) rebraiding my hair. Then it's a picture to be sent to so I can get my story up in the shorts dept. No, it's not too late even though it's been months since the acceptance. Wonderful.

Writing quote for 1/20/07

One of the greatest gifts you can get as a writer is to be born into an unhappy family.

-- Pat Conroy

Quote for 1/20/07

Joy is a net of love by which you can catch souls. A joyful heart is the inevitable result of a heart burning with love.

--Mother Teresa

Friday, January 19, 2007

Again, if you're in the Houston area---GO TO THIS


On the Stage of Modernization

Deborah Colton Gallery is pleased to present On the Stage of Modernization, a selection of videos and photographs by venerated Chinese multi-media artist Han Bing. The exhibition opens Saturday, January 20, 2007 with a reception with the artist from 6:00 to 9:00 PM, and continues through March 3, 2007.

China's Opening and Reform began in 1978, opening a Pandora's Box of transformations nationwide, that were mirrored in the art world. In 1989, Chinese contemporary art suffered setbacks along with the crackdown on the student movement in Tiananmen Square. Since Hong Kong was returned from British sovereignty to the Mainland in 1997, the Peoples Republic of China has been engaged in a massive campaign of urbanized "modernization." The flourishing of contemporary Chinese art since then reflects a more tolerant attitude towards public culture, and the rise of an art that engages the everyday viccisitudes of China's transformation.

Han Bing's videos and photographs reflect this change in their saturation of symbolic imagery. Drawing on a symbolic and conceptual language that allows him to explore relationships between the living and the constructed, Han Bing explores the human costs of "modernization," and the brutal labor undertaken in its service, in his performance video of Love in the Age of Big Construction (2006) and photography such as Everyday Precious. While bearing witness to the sacrifice of traditional culture on the altar of the creation of a new, more "modern" society, he explores in his video art, photography, and performance how this age of de-construction is intimately tied to the age of big construction -- how construction entails destruction. This era of de-construction involves the turning of the rural into the urban, but rarely addresses those left behind in the name of progress.
Han Bing may be best known for his Walking the Cabbage social intervention performances begun in 2000. He uses a quintessentially Chinese symbol of home, sustenance and comfort for poor Chinese - a bok choy cabbage - to provoke questions about contemporary social values and to comment on the ways in which our treatment and use of the objects in our world invests them with their particular, historically situated, socially constructed meanings.

Han Bing has conducted his "cabbage walks" all over the world including Tiananmen Square in Beijing, Shanghai, The Great Wall, Tokyo, Miami, New York, Los Angeles and, this spring, across Europe (Brussels, Paris, and Barcelona). This on-going international event will be performed in not only Houston, but Texas, for the very first time this weekend. During the reception, the artist will lead a cabbage on a short journey through Deborah Colton Gallery. Cabbages and leashes will be available for those wishing to join in the ritual.

Han Bing (1974 - ) grew up in an impoverished village in rural China. After studying oil painting in college, he began Advanced Studies at the Chinese Central Academy of Art. Moving to Beijing, he witnessed the stark contrast between the urbanized "Chinese Dream" propelling the nation's struggle to become modern and the harsh realities of those left behind, or trodden underfoot in the rush. As a clarion voice from the "new contemporary art of the everyday" in a globalized, post-colonial context, Han Bing expresses the struggles and desires of ordinary people in "the theater of Chinese modernization." His work uses photography, video, and multimedia performance installation to invert ordinary practices, asking us to rethink the order of things and contemplate the human condition.

Also on view until March 3 is the U.S. debut solo exhibition Pure Space by Yang Jin Long.

Deborah Colton Gallery is founded on being an innovative showcase for ongoing presentation and promotion of strong historical and visionary contemporary artists world-wide, whose diverse practices include painting, works on paper, sculpture, video, photography, and conceptual and future media installations. The gallery aspires to provide a forum through connecting Texas , national and international artists to make positive change.

Quote for 1/19/07

Just go out there and do what you've got to do.

--Martina Navratilova

Writing quote for 1/19/07

Even in literature and art, no man who bothers about originality will ever be original: whereas if you simply try to tell the truth (without caring twopence how often it has been told before) you will, nine times out of ten, become original without ever having noticed it. Give up yourself, and you will find your real self. Lose your life, and you will save it.

--C.S. Lewis

rain rain rain!!!!!

today is gloriously wet.

Thursday, January 18, 2007

62, 63, 64, and 65

working on rough drafts of those stories at the moment. Also some new poems. Read a collection by Rita Dove to inspire me. I want to grow into a poet like her :)

No new acceptances, no new rejections either.

I got nothing out on the 15th; the stories weren't ready and there was nothing I could do to make them "hurry up and develop" 'cause I tried that line of thinking with 5 pregnancies and except for the last, it was 9 months and sometimes a bit more;-) Patience, dear Gwendolyn, patience.

But I do have my two fiction chapbooks --"Jumpin' and Shoutin' and Carryin' On" and "Bride For A Day" -- ready for submission to a contest.

And I've been sending out reprints. That's one way to feel productive when the writing's slow.

Quote for 1/18/07

Faith is not simply a patience that passively suffers until the storm is past. Rather, it is a spirit that bears things-- with resignations, yes, but above all, with blazing, serene hope.

--Corazon Aquino

Writing quote for 1/18/07

In going where you have to go, and doing what you have to do, and seeing what you have to see, you dull and blunt the instrument you write with. But I would rather have it bent and dull and know I had to put it on the grindstone again and hammer it into shape and put a whetstone to it, and know I had something to write about, than to have it bright and shining and nothing to say, or smooth and well-oiled in the closet, but unused.

-- Ernest Hemingway

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Quote for 1/17/07

We take a risk when we open our hearts because the truth is, if we open our hearts, we will get hurt. You can't open your heart and not have some hurt because you're in a human experience. Even if it's the love of your life and you have many wonderful, deepening, growing, powerful years together, it's a human experience . . . Love takes courage. Be courageous.

--Mary Manin Morrissey

Writing quote for 1/17/06

Write to be understood, speak to be heard, read to grow. . .

--Lawrence Clark Powell

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Well, that's done

Manuscript off to a small press. Hopefully I will have a chapbook by the summer, maybe sooner. Limited edition copies, signed and numbered.

When I was in college and went to readings, I always bought those small chapbooks and I always dreamed of having my own to sell after my own reading and since this is my dream and therefore my responsibility, I've made the choice to get to it.

"Mother Love" is a short collection of my dysfuntional mothering stories, with a dash of hopeful ones. It will be the first of six chapbooks I hope to have published, by me or someone else.

This is the cover photograph, an image by the incredible Daphne Buter. I LOVE LOVE LOVE this -- it so visually reflects my work.

Creativity quote for 1/16/07

The whole life lies in the verb seeing.

--De Chardin Teilhard

Quote for 1/16/07

The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.
-- Martin Luther King

Quote for 1/15/07

Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.
--Martin Luther King

Yesterday was kind of a wacky day. Enjoyed the wackiness of it, surprisingly.

Went to work, though it was originally a day off. Imagine Negroes having to work on MLK day! And I had to pay to ride the bus-- but the driver let me sit in the front;-)

Sunday, January 14, 2007

Writing quote for 1/14/07

I have always felt that the first duty of a writer was to ascend - to make flights, carrying others along if you can manage it. To do this takes courage, even a certain conceit.

-- E. B. White

Quote for 1/14/07

Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever.


I don't want to seem ungrateful, but. . .

it snowed yesterday in Las Cruces, New Mexico. (?????!!!!!) 2nd time since I left :(

Now, why couldn't've yesterday been a miraculous and SNOWY day for me?

Saturday, January 13, 2007

If you're in Houston

The curator is a really cool lady.

Maya Kovoskaya

Three Metamorphoses Projects

Opening Reception:¡¡
January 13, 2007 - 6:30-8:30 pm

Exhibition Dates:
1.11.2007 - 1.19.2007


The Deborah Colton Gallery

2500 Summer Street I Third Floor Houston, Texas 77007 USA

Phone: 713-864-2364

Fax:0„2 713-869-9592

Tuesday - Saturday,
10:30 to 5:00

Sunday-Monday, by appointment

Writing quote for 1/13/07

The pen is the tongue of the mind.

--Miguel de Cervantes

Quote for 1/13/07

Make your optimism come true.

--Author Unknown


Good days, bad days. Sometimes there are blessed days and for me, today has been one of those:)

Friday, January 12, 2007

Quote for 1/12/07

You yourselves have seen what I did to the Egyptians, that I might carry you on wings of eagles and bring you to myself.

--Exodus 19:4

Writing quote for 1/12/07

The writer, perhaps more than any of his fellow artists, has access to the human subconscious. His words sink deep, shaping dreams, easing the pain of loneliness, banishing incantations and omens, keeping alive the memories of the race, proviving intimations of immortality, nourishing great anticipations, sharpening the instinct for justice, and imparting respect for the fragility of life. These functions are essential for human evolution. Without them, civilization becomes brittle and breaks easily. Society must be measured, therefore, not just by its display of power but by its attention to the conditions of creativity and its acceptance of human sovereignty as the highest value.

--Norman Cousins

Thursday, January 11, 2007

Writing quote for 1/11/07

We are cups, constantly and quietly being filled. The trick is, knowing how to tip ourselves over and let the beautiful stuff out.

-- Ray Bradbury

Quote for 1/11/07

What we are is God's gift to us.
What we become is our gift to God.

--Eleanor Powell

I so love "the Alices"




and Adams, fortunate to have found her collected stories on the bargain table for two bucks!

Another acceptance and another (possible) reading!

A micro "Wild and Vibrant Colors" will be published in Long Story Short.

And maybe another reading! Have to submit poetry to them today. Let's cross fingers & everything else.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007


Monday, the 15th, is the deadline for several contests/calls for submissions. It is also, of course, a federal holiday!

Have to put a fire under my a** and have some things ready for mailing by 2 p.m. Saturday.

Quote for 1/10/07

It's kind of fun to do the impossible.

--Walt Disney

Creative quote for 1/10/07

Creativity is a central source of meaning in our lives. . . when we are involved in it, we feel that we are living more fully than during the rest of life.

--Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Oh, and two rejections in my mailbox

but who cares????

I'm going to read in New York!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

A NYC reading!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I will be reading [the sexy stuff;-)] as part of the
  • In The Flesh: Erotic Reading Series.

  • YAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    I love New York. Have to pick a date, have two choices, I'll think on that tonight.

    Flashquake micro contest

    Less Is More: A Celebration of Micro-Flash

    We invite you to enter flashquake's new contest featuring some of the shortest forms of flash literature.

    Our Less Is More contest will open on January 1. We're accepting entries for micro-fiction of 100 words or less and mini-poems called "Fibs." And to acknowledge flashquake's long commitment to the visual arts, we'll showcase "micro" photographs taken with cell phone or PDA cameras.

    Entries will be accepted until midnight on January 31, and we'll announce winners on February 20, for publication in the Spring issue of flashquake. There is no entry fee.

    We'll have ten winners in each of the writing categories. The first-prize winner in each category will receive $75, the second-prize winner will receive $50, the third-prize winner will receive $25 and seven honorable mentions will be awarded $10 each. In addition, we'll award $10 each for the ten best photographs we receive.

    Subjects in all categories can be light and humorous, dark and gloomy, or anything in between. The "micro" forms often lend themselves to topical subjects.

    Entries in the fiction category must be complete stories with all the main elements of storytelling: clear characters, conflict and setting. A satisfying ending is a must.

    In the poetry category, we'll have some fun and try something new. "Fibs" are six-line poems originated by Gregory K. Pincus at GottaBook (, based on the mathematical Fibonacci sequence featured in The Da Vinci Code.

    The first line of a Fib is one syllable and each line after that combines the total syllables of the previous two lines, so the six-line syllable count is 1-1-2-3-5-8. This challenging form of writing stimulates the mind as well as the muse. You can find tips and plenty of examples at GottaBook.

    Please follow these entry rules carefully:

    • Writers are welcome to enter any or all of the categories with up to two submissions in each. Entries will be accepted by e-mail only. All entries must be unpublished work.

    • Send each category submission in a separate e-mail to In the subject line, put "Contest entry - (Category):Your Name." If you submit two in any category they can be put in the same e-mail, but don't mix categories; send separate e-mails if you enter more than one category.

    • Prepare your fiction and poetry entries as PLAIN TEXT and paste them into an e-mail message. You can indicate bold by enclosing text in asterisks, italics by enclosing text with underscores. Entries submitted as attachments will be deleted, unopened.

    • For photo entries, include a brief description of the picture in the body of the e-mail and attach the photo as a .jpg file. The photo must be submitted exactly as it came off the cell phone or PDA camera. No Photoshopping. And on your honor: No doctoring SLR photos to make them look like they came from a cell phone. Is it really worth being banished to artistic hell for ten bucks?

    • At the top of your e-mail message, provide the following personal information:

      • Name
      • Land Mail Address
      • E-mail Address
      • Brief biography (no more than 100 words, written in the third person)
    • Proofread your work carefully and submit your entry only once. Corrections received after the original submission will not be considered.

    • Entries must be received by midnight on January 31 EST. Those time-stamped later will not be considered.

    • Each entry must have a title with a limit of seven words for fiction and and three words for poetry. Titles will not be included in the word-count. Use them wisely to throw extra light on your story or poem.

    • Fiction entries must keep within the 100-word limit or they will be disqualified. Contractions count as one word, as do abbreviations, initials, acronyms and numbers, whether spelled out (ten) or written as numerals (10). Each word in a hyphenated string of two or more words will be counted separately. Punctuation marks do not count as words.

    • In poetry entries, syllable counts must conform exactly to the Fibonacci sequence.

    • By entering the contest, you agree, if your entry is selected, to allow us to publish your story online, record your story in spoken word, include it on a CD for distribution to the winners, and possible use in a future anthology for sale.

    • Thank you for your interest in and support for flashquake.

    Prose poem contest

    Prose Poem Postcard Prize Contest

    Meridian is excited to announce an innovative new contest. The winner of our Prose Poem Postcard Prize Contest will be printed on a postcard, and will receive an award of $100 and 100 stamped, ready-to-send postcards. The postcard will also be distributed with the Summer 2007 issue of Meridian and handed out at the 2007 AWP Conference to promote the magazine.



    • This contest requires a $3 (U.S. dollars) entry fee. After uploading your submission, you will be directed to a secure credit card payment page. For your entry fee, one of our editors will review it for a final decision. We expect to announce the winner in mid-February 2007.
    • You may submit up to 3 prose poems per entry. There is no set length limit, but the idea is that this has to fit on a 4" × 6" postcard, so let common sense be thy guide. All submissions must be unpublished work; simultaneous submissions are fine.
    • Please submit only PDF, word processor, or text files: Acrobat (.pdf), MS Word (.doc), MS Word RTF (.rtf), and text (.txt). Use your word processor's "Save As" feature to select one of these file types. Any other file type will be rejected and deleted.
    • Artistic types are welcome to design a 4" x 6" postcard featuring their work, but we must receive it in .PDF format. No Quark, Illustrator, or image files, please.
    • Shorter filenames without spaces work best.
    • Don't forget to give us a working e-mail (one valid through May of 2007). It's the only way for us to contact you.
    • Entries will be considered for regular publication in Meridian, as well.
    • You may enter more than one time; however, in the past, entering muliple times has not significantly increased a contestant's odds. If you do wish to enter more than once, please complete the contest submission process and then return to the main page to submit again, rather than using the Back button on your browser.


    • Current UVA students, staff, and faculty are NOT eligible.
    • UVA alumni who graduated before June 2004 may enter the contest.
    • Former Meridian staff are not eligible. (If you've been on our masthead, don't enter.)
    • Friends, relatives, and former teachers of current Meridian staff are not eligible.
    • Current subscribers may enter the contest for the same $3 fee. Your subscription will be extended by one year (and you will remain, as always, one of our favorite people in the world, even if you get treated like everyone else for the purposes of the contest).

    Writing quote for 1/09/07

    I heard an angel speak last night,
    And he said, "write!"

    --Elizabeth Barrett Browning

    Quote for 1/09/07

    Be courageous. It's one of the only places left uncrowded.

    --Anita Roddick

    Monday, January 08, 2007

    Writing quote for 1/08/07

    The writer's first affinity is not to a loyalty, a tradition , a morality, a religion, but to life itself, and to its representaion in language.

    --Jayne Anne Phillips

    Quote for 1/08/07

    Enjoy life. This is not a dress-rehearsal.


    Sunday, January 07, 2007

    Quote for 1/07/07

    Begin at once to live, and count each separate day as a separate life.

    -- Seneca

    Creative quote for 1/07/07

    Creativity requires the courage to let go of certainties.

    -- Erich Fromm

    There's still time for a few thoughts!

    A 12.10-hour work day. Whew! Still a few minutes, though, for some ideas to ponder. Otherwise, good night.

    Saturday, January 06, 2007

    Writing quote for 1/06/07

    I put all my genius into my life; I put only my talent into my works.

    -- Oscar Wilde

    Quote for 1/06/07

    The more anger towards the past you carry in your heart, the less capable you are of loving in the present.

    --Barbara De Angelis


    Got the work schedule I want so I can create a regular writing schedule alongside the school schedule. Classes are in time blocks and I need to decide if I'm going in the morning, afternoon or evening.

    In a fiction book, perhaps the Butler one, I read that one should write as soon as one wakes up because you're still connected to the dream world/unconscious, though that idea I'd read before in a writing book during my graduate school days. I'm not a morning person, but I could (and have) gotten up to write, still I think I'd like to go to school and be done with it and have the day at home to write and do whatever. Don't know -- have 23 days to decide.

    Anyway, I've got more leeway in my life than I've had in a very long time and I'm so ready to create the space--physical, pyschologically and emotionally-- to be the most creative I can be.

    And on that note, it's off to work on stories.

    Friday, January 05, 2007

    Quote for 1/05/07

    Living might mean taking chances but they're worth taking.

    --Leanne Womack
    from "I Hope You Dance"

    Creative quote for 1/05/07

    I'm always thinking about creating. My future starts when I wake up every morning . . . Every day I find something creative to do with my life.

    -- Miles Davis

    another gwen story

    A man and I get off the bus at the same time. On the sidewalk, we fall into step together. He smiles over at me. I smile in return.

    He says something.

    I shake my head. "No comprendo. Hablo espanol muy poquito."

    He grins in an understanding way. "Como se llama?"

    "Gwen. Usted?"


    He's carrying a brown paper bag and he asks if I want a soda.

    I say no.

    He says something else, in Spanish, and I reply, "Otra vez, no hablo espanol. No comprendo, senor."

    "How do you say," he asks me, his English heavily accented, "uh. . . pussy?"

    Ha! Okay, now I know what el quiere.

    Lucky for me, nothing will be lost in the translation because in English and in Spanish, my answer sounds the same.


    Today's misc. rambling

    An absolutely splendid day. Work was so easy and non-stressful for a change. It rained and although I missed that 'cause I was indoors, there were two rainbows, one arched over the other, waiting for me when I got off. I was in Barnes and Noble, spending time browsing 'til the bus and found "Caramel Flava," an erotic anthology edited by Zane. Susan Diplacido has a deliciously hot story in there. Put me in the mood to finish an erotic work that I need to send off to an anthology.

    Am reading a book about writing fiction by Robert Butler and learned why story #61 happened as it did. Stories come not from ideas, he says, but from the white hot center of you. Meaning: when I kept trying to create a story from the incident, I was "thinking" and writers don't think. They feel and they feel from their unconscious and there's where I planted the seed when I realized I was writing drivel and once there, the story --the real and emotional one-- could emerge. Really interesting book. He says it's important to write EVERYDAY, and I realized that I did that back in 2000 when I chucked my job for a writing career. I wrote everyday but then I got lazy(sometimes I don't want to write even though I want to write) and life got complicated and I couldn't find the time. He says that you have to create the time and space and regulary go there--at the same time--and eventually you'll train yourself that writing is what happens at this time and in this place. But I knew that; it was just nice have Mr. Robert Olen Butler agree with me;-)

    "From Where You Dream" is the title of Butler's book and it's my "writing book" to read this week. I finished "The Art of Writing," which was some excerpts from other books (it's part of a writer's kit)-- "The Artist's Way," "Beyond Words" (which I own, but haven't yet read), and "Deep Writing." Nice refresher course. I was trying to read Gardner's "The Art of Fiction," but I couldn't get into it. Then I tried "The Writer's Compass," but that wasn't happening either. Both I will read at later dates, when it's time for me to learn what they have to say. Besides that, I have two writer's kits that I'm working from. One has daily writing exercises and so far I've done every one so far for January. Yes, it's only been four days but still. . .

    I got rejected. Okay, a story got rejected. Thought it would; I'm not sure if it works or doesn't (ha ha, eventually, it DOESN'T for this magazine). Will place it back in the rewrite file and let it sit a spell before I think about sending it out again. Another story got rejected, but I'd already withdrawn it so that didn't bother me [you can't fire me--I quit;-)]. I have three chapbooks ready to be printed out and entered into two different chapbook contests and I've got a non-fiction children's piece going that I have to finish quickly because it's seasonal(it's a summer piece) and I'm pushing the deadline, I know. I have another chapbook called "Mother Love" which I'm going to self-publish and the wonderful Daphne Buter has supplied me with the most incredible photograph for my cover!

    So, it's a change of clothes, a snack and I'm writing the rest of the night.

    Thursday, January 04, 2007

    I'm in another anthology!

    My second favorite story that I've written, "Going to Hell With My Eyes Wide Open," is in an anthology of work previously published in
  • Nuvein
  • , selected by the editor. It is, in fact, the very first story in the book-- YAY!

    Buy the anthology
  • here.
  • Story #61

    I'd been wanting to write about an image/incident that occurred shortly after I moved to Arizona. My first attempts at capturing what I wanted to convey had felt stiff, contrived. Lucky for me, those writings were in the notebook I lost.

    Planted a seed, watered it with my curiosity (what's this about?) and BOOM, yesterday it blossomed and I had my rough draft in the course of five minutes (it's a flash).

    Sometimes I'm lazy and/or pressed for time--why can't every story happen like this?

    Creative quote for 1/04/07

    Only those that risk going too far can possibly find ut how far one can go.

    --T.S. Eliot

    Quote for 1/04/07

    Why are you so enchanted by this world when a mint of gold lies within you?


    A fragment from my life

    It's a Saturday morning. My mother tells me that our family is going out to eat and asks if I want to go. I love Pancho's, the all-you-can-eat Mexican buffet, but I tell her 'no' because an empty house save me gives me a grand opportunity.

    I have decided that that night I will kill myself.

    I scrounge through the medicine cabinet for unused pills. There is enough for an overdose, I hope, or at least a fatal combination that will give me the peace I long for.

    Throughout the day, I go through my books, collectibles, and for the last time, remember what they mean to me. I listen to every record I own. I play my favorite, "Captain Fantastic and the Brown Dirt Cowboy" again and again. One song, of course, pierces my plan.

    "Someone saved, someone saved, someone saved my life tonight. . ."

    I escape to the backyard, hide out to cry my silent tears. I don't want to die, but I can't live like this.

    A voice inside me says, "If you kill yourself, Gwen, you will never get excited hearing a new Elton John song on the radio for the first time, you will never eat another strawberry, you will never hear the rain on the roof again."

    Just three things. Small things, but big enough to keep me alive.

    Wednesday, January 03, 2007

    Stories I've been meaning to share

    I'm going to be telling you stories that I want to share or let go off. I plan to share my San Francisco trip (finally) but find myself unable(since I switched to the beta blog) to copy the info for the pics from the previous blog.

    Yes, I'd posted my pics but I didn't write the accompanying tale, I proscrastinate. Anyway once I figure out how to get the link (or you can just go back to July 18, 2006 'cause they are posted and see them there.)


    "You know, some men are leg men. . .

    and some like breasts," Fred told me. "I'm a --"

    "Ass man," I said.

    Fred's eyes widened and his mouth froze open.

    I laughed. Enough conversations about mine, no surprise there.

    "Well, you don't have to say it like that," he said.

    "What? Are you a fanny man? A booty guy? A buttocks man? No, ass man sounds best."

    He grinned. "Those jeans of yours must be painted; I don't know how you even get 'em on."

    (Lie on the floor. Tug, tug, tug and tug some more. A sturdy safety pin pulls up the zipper. Hoist yourself to a standing position by using the nearest chair. Breathing is optional, but worth the smile on a man's face.)

    "If you gain one more ounce, I swear you're gonna just bust out of 'em."

    I examined the seams. "Double-stitched." I assured him. "And are you saying my butt's too big?"

    Fred shook his head. "I ain't saying that 'cause I ain't complaining. . . "

    Writing quote for 1/03/07

    My aim is to put down on paper what I see and what I feel in the best and simplest way.

    --Ernest Hemingway

    Quote for 1/03/07

    Be happy. It's one way of being wise.

    --Sidonie Gabrielle

    Tuesday, January 02, 2007

    Writing quote for 1/02/07

    I write all of my novels and stories . . . in a great surge of delightful passion.

    -- Ray Bradbury

    Quote for 1/02/07

    We have two ears and one mouth so that we can listen twice as much as we speak.

    I've been taking pictures when I wasn't writing. A whole new perspective on the world. Also I'm hoping to publish photos this year.

    Yesterday as I was heading out the door to go to work, I had second thoughts about whether or not to take the camera. I didn't and sure enough, there was a photograph awaiting me but I wasn't poised to receive it.

    I vow now not to leave without my camera or my notebook. I have to uphold my end as an artist--arms open to catch the inspiration when it comes my way.

    New Year's Resolutions


    My one and only, I broke last night. (But only partially, so I wasn't that bad!)

    Monday, January 01, 2007

    The stories I’ve got so far. Some are old and have just needed tweaking which I never got around to last year. Let’s see if my procrastinating side will go on a bit of a holiday so I can get stuff done. Some have already been accepted/published, some currently in submission.

    1. Leap
    2. Los Prisioneros Pequenos (The Little Prisoners)
    3. Wading
    4. Panties
    5. The Dying Room
    6. Sometimes
    7. Patterns
    8. Swipe
    9. 35mm
    10. What I Call Him
    11. Wild & Vibrant Colors
    12. Maybe Today
    13. Dead Fish Eyes & Wails
    14. My Husband’s Lucky Tie
    15. Out In A Storm
    16. The Cleaning Lady
    17. All That She Was Given
    18. An Early Fall
    19. Lil’ Reverend
    20. Another Holiday Season
    21. Ernestine Watson’s Girl
    22. Afterwards
    23. 103 In The Shade
    24. I’m With The Band
    25. A Baptist In Texas
    26. How To Love A Woman
    27. If This Is The Wrong House
    28. Where I’ll Be If I’m Not There
    29. An Abolitionist In The Family
    30. Cedar Rain
    31. All God’s Children
    32. Strawberries & Cadillacs
    33. Lily, In Bloom
    34. The First Time And The Very Last Time
    35. Buzzard’s Roost
    36. Children On A Leash
    37. Something Like Happiness
    38. Beds
    39. Taking Shape
    40. They Were Champions
    41. Begot
    42. Fly Freddie, Fly
    43. Acts
    44. Flyway
    45. Puzzles
    46. Gangsta Luv
    47. Andre’s Rap
    48. One Shot, One Kill
    49. Soldier Boys
    50. Howling
    51. Winner Take All
    52. Jack’s Old Place
    53. A Love Story-- Revolutionary, Of Sorts
    54. Letting It Get To Empty
    55. To Have And To Hold
    56. Jesus With An Afro
    57. (untitled-about child suicide)
    58. (untitled-about Buffalo soldiers)
    59. (untitled-about freedom summer in Mississippi)
    60. (untitled-about grad school and grad assistants and sharing an office with someone you don’t like)

    Writing quote for 1/01/07

    It's all about letting the story take over.

    --Robert Stone

    Quote for 1/01/07

    I am yours.
    You are mine.
    Of this we are certain.
    You are lodged in my
    heart, the small
    key is lost.
    You must stay
    there forever.

    --Frau Ava