Jubilant: The Daily Post Photo Challenge, 20 May 2016

  • Jubilant, adjective: showing great joy, satisfaction, or triumph; rejoicing; exultant

This 40th Anniversary Calyx anthology, published April 2016 by Ooligan Press, is everything:

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A sunny day in Dublin is always cause for celebration:

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April 2016:  Bed and Breakfast, Inchicore, Dublin

Last but not least: On self’s first day back in London in 2016 (early April), she met up with poet Joan McGavin, who took her to the church of St. Martin-in-the-Fields. Self is always jubilant to be back in London:

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The Most Beautiful Window: Church of St. Martin-in-the-Fields, London

Self is at her best when she is traveling. Her state of mind when traveling can best be described as jubilant.

If you try to stop her from traveling, she will be in a bad mood.

Not only that, she will hate you forever.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

 

Admiration 4: A List (Far From Complete)

OH NO! SELF ACCIDENTALLY DELETED HER OWN POST.

It happened while she was trying to expand on her reasons for assembling this particular mosaic of images to represent the week’s Daily Post Photo Challenge: ADMIRATION.

And she couldn’t find a previous saved version. Gaaaah! And in re-selecting images, she decided to stop at six instead of the eight she originally had. And she also substituted some images. Sorry for the confusion!

  1. Lady in Red: Ger, chef of Cork’s pre-eminent restaurant, Café Paradiso. Such a great chef, and also very direct and witty! Self loves Ger.
  2. Katniss Everdeen: Self-explanatory, really.
  3. Allison Joseph, co-editor with Jon Tribble of Crab Orchard Review. Fabulousness.
  4. The mother-daughter team who cook and manage Chez Mamie, 22 Hanway Street, London. They make London feel like home.
  5. SeaCity Museum, Southampton, England: Thank you to Joan McGavin, who took her here last year. What a great exhibit on the Titanic. While other cities lay claim to having the best exhibits on the tragedy, Southampton’s is so poignant because it focuses on the crew, most of whom were from this city. And therefore, the focus of the displays is on working-class people. Which makes this a much more layered story. In one gallery, there’s a map on the floor with red dots representing the houses of each of the victims. The dots are clustered around the poorer sections of the city.
  6. Last but not least: Nutschell Ann Windsor, Program Administrator for UCLA Extension’s on-line Writers Program. She is the best. She not only handles all requests with Zen calmness, she is a writer herself. And an editor. She’s holding an anthology she edited.

And now self will post before she accidentally deletes something again.

Stay tuned.

Where To Find (Some of) Self’s Published Pieces

Look here!

Next year’s AWP Conference and Book Fair: Washington, DC.

You do not want to miss it. For sure.

Stay tuned.

Best of AWP 2016 (Love L.A.), Part 2

Awesomeness is a book fair.

A few people were saying the latest AWP book fair was too big, too spread out. But self doesn’t see it getting any smaller. And okay, she probably only saw 1/10 of the publishers who were there. But, still, fun times!

Okay, so Chris Hemsworth was NOT actually at the AWP Bookfair in Los Angeles, earlier this month. But, please, why would self ever shy away from including a fabulous hunk of eye candy like Chris? Are you crazes? He was on the cover of Angeleno magazine!

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

Best of AWP 2016 (Love L.A.), Part 1

Just look at all this literary goodness!

Self decided to give herself a pick-me-up after reading today’s New York Times. What better way than by reminding herself that — people, America is full of writers/artists/publishers who soldier on, no matter what the odds! And who manage to look like they’re having a great time while they’re at it! Without needing comb-overs!

Allison Joseph, Crab Orchard Review Panel, AWP 2016

One of the thrills of 2016 AWP in Los Angeles was participating in a Crab Orchard Review panel on the West Coast & Beyond Issue.

That issue was the final volume in a series that focused on different regions of America (Geography = destiny. At least, self wholeheartedly believes so).

Self read last, from her story “Crackers.” It’s about an American who goes AWOL in the “wild mountain fastness of the Philippines,” acquires three wives and fathers 27 children. As self was reading at the panel, she found herself less nervous than she expected to be. Hallelujah!

Afterwards, sighing with relief that she didn’t make too many out-and-out gaffes (such as mis-pronouncing words, which is the trouble with writing stories filled with words one normally doesn’t utter during conversation), self happened to mention to someone in the audience that she’d tried for a long time to get into Crab Orchard Review, and she was so proud to have actually made it. Allison Joseph said, without missing a beat, “Because we were waiting for that story.”

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

The Future Is

This week’s Daily Post Photo Challenge is FUTURE.

  • Share an image that represents the potential of things to come.

Self’s Nikon Coolpix decided to have a nervous breakdown. All of her pictures now have a top and bottom stripe. Nevertheless, here is a picture of a delightful meal that will soon be consumed:

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Nikon Coolpix Having a Breakdown: At Chez Mamie, Hanway Street

A book about to be published: Ooligan Press’s collaboration with Calyx, Memories Flow In Our Veins: 40 Years of Women’s Writings From Calyx:

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Hayley Wilson, Project Manager of the Calyx 40th Anniversary Anthology forthcoming from Ooligan Press: MEMORIES FLOW IN OUR VEINS

Finally, a photo of a young reader spotted at The Last Bookstore in downtown Los Angeles: Reading a book is an investment in the future:

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Time spent reading a book is never time wasted.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

 

 

Exhausted by AWP, Turning to Everlark

AWP Los Angeles was one heck of a ride.

It was huge. It was overwhelming. It was also a lot of fun.

Self is processing.

To help this process along, she is indulging in reading Everlark fan fiction. There was an Everlark fiction exchange recently (Indeed, Everlark shows no sign of fading, even after the end of the movie series, November 2015), and self contributed a prompt. The new fics have been slowly trickling in, oh joy.

Everlark is all love stories. All the time. Angst-y love stories.

Everlark falls apart. Again and again and again and again. And then there is a delicious, excruciatingly slow “growing back together” (the most loved Hunger Games trope)

Apropos of which, a quote from fellow Stanford Creative Writing Program alum Jeffrey Eugenides, in his introduction to the 2008 Harper anthology, My Mistress’s Sparrow Is Dead: Great Love Stories, From Chekhov to Munro:

A love story can never be about full possession . . . Love stories depend on disappointment, on unequal births and feuding families, on matrimonial boredom and at least one cold heart . . .  Love stories, nearly without exception, give love a bad name.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

 

Candide Is Flogged In Time to Singing

Today, self wandered all over downtown Los Angeles, introduced herself to various editors and publishers, attended a Brian Roley panel, said hi to Keith Tuma and Amy Toland of Miami University Press, bought a T-shirt from Grist, told the editors of Painted Bride Quarterly that she had submitted a story for their themed issue on Monsters, bought the latest issue of Hotel Amerika (another gorgeous cover), stopped by Juked‘s booth, said hi to Nutschell at the UCLA Extension Writers Program booth, dropped by Crab Orchard Review, heard from Nikki of Squaw Fabulous Workshop 6, never got as far as Witness or Bellingham Review.

She met the American publisher of Elena Ferrante. She regrets not having bought copies of Ferrante’s work. She’ll return to the Book Fair tomorrow and buy at least one.

She met a former UCLA Extension student, who took her to the Last Bookstore on Spring Street (where the unmistakable scent of weed wafted through the entrance), and asked if they carried E. L. James.

“Of course!” said the young woman at the cashier’s desk. She left her post, beckoning self to follow. In the section called EROTICA, the woman placed a copy of Grey in self’s hand.

Heavens to mergatroid!

Since self was already in that section, she decided to explore the shelves. And she ended up buying another book!

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From the Last Bookstore, 453 Spring Street, downtown Los Angeles

Actually, self has not been enthused with Candide. When she was back in her room, and read about his second or third flogging, she almost put the book down. But the next book on her reading list, The Merseault Investigation, is not at hand.

Trouble is, self never anticipated getting through The Death of Ivan Ilyich so fast. And not only that, she never expected to dislike The Death of Ivan Ilyich. And she never expected to be so impatient with Candide. But the only other book she has at the moment is Grey. Should she start reading that?

But no! She must give Candide a chance! Self can’t even!

She forced herself to resume reading Chapter Seven: How an Old Woman Took Care of Candide, and How He Recovered That Which He Loved.

“Eat, drink, sleep,” the old woman tells Candide, over and over.

“Who are you?” Candide kept asking her. “Who has inspired you with such kindness?”

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

 

“Something Will Happen”

Excerpt from “At the Station,” a short story by Amos Kenan, translated from the Hebrew by Chaya Galai, included in the anthology 50 Stories From Israel, edited by Zisi Stavi:

The station stretches as far as the eye can see. I order a cup of coffee, light a cigarette. Passengers are rushing about, suitcases in hand. The engine whistles and emits steam. A crowd of people are waving handkerchiefs. The train jerks forward. An engine hisses. The train brakes with a squeal. The passengers descend, suitcases in hand. Small convoys of luggage carts push their way through the dense crowd. The passengers move towards the exit.

I suck in cigarette smoke, and wait. Something will happen. I think I may fall in love.

 

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