Admiration 2: Writers and Writers Organizations and the New Wonder Woman

“Depict something or someone you admire.”

— Krista, The Daily Post

In the last week of March and the opening days of April this year, self was in Los Angeles. First, to attend a reading of her good friend Zack Linmark at USC. His first novel, Rolling the R’s, a great, groundbreaking, kick-ass novel, turned 20, and USC celebrated that milestone by having him read with Jessica Hagedorn and Lois-Ann Yamanaka, two other groundbreakers.

Immediately following that reading was the annual AWP Conference, which is of course also accompanied by the most fabulous book fair in America. And at that book fair, self stopped briefly to chat with staffers at VIDA, a completely volunteer-run organization, which publishes statistics on how many women are published by which literary organs. And it’s eye-opening.

Finally, Wonder Woman. Just because. Watch for her movie. Emily! So proud of your daughter/director. The picture is a grainy still from the Batman vs. Superman movie, which self watched just so she could tell Emily in London: I saw Wonder Woman in costume on the big screen for the first time!

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

Admiration: Daily Post Photo Challenge, 29 April 2016

  • Show us someone or something you admire (and tell us about them, too!)

— Krista, The Daily Post

Here’s one:  David Bowie, who died of cancer early this year. Self cannot get the lyrics of his songs out of her mind. Here, the chorus of “Changes”:

Ch-ch-ch-ch changes
Turn and face the strange

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Listening to David Bowie on YouTube: “Changes”

Here’s another: Keith Tuma, Miami University Press. This man has steered the Press to indie greatness. Seriously.

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Keith Tuma of Miami University Press, at the 2016 AWP Book Fair in Los Angeles

Finally, shout-out to Nutschell Ann Windsor and Phoebe Lim of UCLA Extension’s Writers Program: Grace Under Pressure, Personified. Here they are at the UCLA Extension Writers Program booth at the 2016 AWP Book Fair in Los Angeles (Fabulous book fair, BTW).

UCLA always has the best swag. They gave out, among other goodies, a UBS stick, a leather-bound blank journal, and really good pens.

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Three Cheers for UCLA Extension’s Writers Program! Love the people. Here they are, doing Spin the Wheel at the 2016 AWP Book Fair in Los Angeles.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. 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.

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.

 

Luna Moore, Met at AWP 2016 Los Angeles, at 40th Anniversary Calyx Reading

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Luz Delgado and Her Daughter Luna Moore, at the Calyx Press 40th Anniversary Reading at AWP 2016, Los Angeles, April 2

Every time self meets a new young person, she always asks for a book recommendation.

Her curiosity always pays off in spades. Hello, Infernal Devices, Cassandra Clare’s steampunk trilogy, recommended by Calgary niece Karina!

So, at the recently concluded AWP  Conference, held in Los Angeles, self met a wonderful girl named Luna Moore.

And Luna recommended:

  • Jane Eyre
  • The Particular Sadness of Lemon Cake
  • the Harry Potter series

Turns out Title # 2, The Particular Sadness of Lemon Cake, is by Aimee Bender. Which means it probably isn’t YA. Luna is quite a sophisticated reader!

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

 

CANDIDE, Chapter 14: How Candide and Cacambo Were Received by the Jesuits in Paraguay

“She will get along as best she can,” said Cacambo; “women are never at a loss; God looks after them; let’s run for it.”

Your Impossible Voice Making Its First Appearance at AWP

Come say hello to Your Impossible Voice Prose Editor Stephen Beachy and Associate Editor Kate Folk: Table # 1661, between Jaded Ibis Press and the University of Montana’s MFA Program.

They’ll be giving away copies of the journal, fielding questions about future issues, and curating an exquisite corpse.

First ever appearance at the AWP Bookfair.

Congratulations! High Fives!

Stay tuned.

Eye Spy 2: Eyes Are the Mirror of the Soul

For self’s second post on EYE SPY, the WordPress Photo Challenge this week, she is going to focus on faces and expressions.

First, a woman self met last night, at a Christmas dinner at her mother’s place in Yonkers, NY:

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Vina Freya Orden: Such a big heart! And funny as all get-out.

Next: Self! On the train to Venice last month.

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The Blog Mistress Herself, November 2015

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The Fascination! Brochure for the Dromineer Literary Festival, Ireland: October 2015

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

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