Sunday, January 24, 2016

Sabbaticalling: Weekly Roundup #3

I almost didn't write this post because of the snow. When a blizzard arrives, we get to blame everything on the snow. Many writers curled up with pens and computers and wrote during the storm. I did not. I watched movies and played games with Eddie, and then we shoveled, and then we watched more movies, unable to move after shoveling. Today the sun has arrived but the snow is still there. Whatever we shoveled yesterday is covered again, but the layer is significantly lower than the new snow around it. Another achy round later today, but first, here's what I did this past week (or, actually, last week, considering today is Sunday of the new week).

I read and finished one longer novel, and then began both a poetry collection and a non-fiction book. This last book is the book I bought last week. Exciting! I also reorganized some of the shelves in my closet/library in my office with all the new books I got for Christmas. Somehow, this counts as working on my sabbatical.

I caught up on almost all the back issues of The Writer's Chronicle that have been in a stack on my side table in the living room for the past year. I have one left and saved it for next week because I want to read almost every article in it, and the articles are long and can be quite the undertaking.

I read some online journals, but not all the ones on my list because I finished the January issue of some of the ones I frequent. So I hopped around online, reading more of the journals I've been finding or have been wanting to read.

I blogged a bit and I'm blogging now because blogging is fun. I also updated my Readings page because I'll be reading soon at different places.

I continued to plan two major upcoming readings, one at the Cradle of Aviation Museum on February 11 (516 572 4066 Call now to reserve your seat!) where I'm reading with a few other poets and one that I'm hosting at Turn of the Corkscrew in Rockville Centre for March. Poets In Nassau is hosting one there in February, too, but I think I'm done planning that one.

The second workshop with my artist friend proved to be really helpful. We workshopped a bunch of my poems, and then we workshopped one of her stories. I came away with revisions in mind and a borrowed copy of Labyrinth on DVD.

On the high of the workshop, I revised a bunch of poems, and then I wrote something new. It's not a poem yet. I found an article about the artist Louise Bourgeouis's house, and I wrote a half poem half page of notes about it. It will be a fabulous poem. It doesn't fit into anything I'm doing by way of collections, but it will still be a fabulous poem.

I also revised the two creative non-fiction pieces that I wrote over the past two weeks, and then I wrote a new one. Clearly, these are short pieces. These are not extensive woven essays. Sabbatical is treating me well, but it has not made me a mega-writer.

I submitted to ten journals, most of which were paper submissions, and one of which does not allow simultaneous submissions. Those require a lot more work.

I received two rejections. One of them stated they really liked one of the poems, though, so there's that.

On the brighter side, three of my poems were accepted to one journal, and I'll be the featured poet in February. More on that when it appears. This acceptance lead me to the fun activity of withdrawing these poems from the recent submissions I've made, and since I've been a submitting machine, it took quite a bit of time. Apparently, I submit the same poems to everyone when I do a lot of submissions at once. Note to some journals: if you accept simultaneous submissions, please make withdrawing easy on everyone.

I'd planned to attend one reading per week, so my reading this week was going to be at a Starbucks in Long Beach on Friday night. It was canceled. Because of the impending snow. See? Blame it on the blizzard.

Omigod, you guys! Copyright! As a followup to Milli Vanilli's 1989 Top 100 Billboard hit "Blame It On The Rain," I'm totally putting out a song called "Blame It On The Blizzard." Stardom? I'm on my way.

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