Thursday, December 22, 2011

An interesting review about Anne Frank

I picked this one up for my blog, because as an English teacher, this is almost a requirement for students, at varying levels. This would be a great companion book for teachers, to help understand the content and the issues that come up on the page and in the classroom.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Winter Solstice

Today is a spiritual day, the darkest day of the year. This is the first time I am spending a Solstice/Christmas as a married lady! So I have a lot to be grateful for this holiday. I remember a lot more snow on the ground last season, it was up to my waist and now there's only a few patches here and there. I got the deer for this Yule tree because it seemed to tell a little story--and although we celebrate the season and the spirit of the holiday, we are not denominational--we have a tree and it was looking a little bare underneath so I arranged this tiny tableau to make it look like the two deer were resting, and safe, under a tree like they like to do in the wild--mostly in the summer. And that's what Solstice is, a reminder that the Holly King has gone to sleep, and though the days seem dark now, Light and Summer always come back.

Rare Books Burn In Egypt

And this is what led to the Dark Ages. One could argue that with ultra conservatism and the "death of literature" as the English language is being destroyed by text messages and instant messaging, can one truly compare the two? Is burning books the same as dumbing down our texts and emails to a series of abbrviations and numbers? That's the the first thing I thought of when I saw this article.

Movie Trailer: The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey

Here is the permalink for Peter jackson's release next December.

Friday, December 2, 2011

Flash Fiction #1

Here is my first attempt at Flash Fiction Fridays. I really enjoyed this excercise, (for me, that's what it was) and I think I'll keep doing this! I think 500 words is the limit, mine comes in just under 400. Just a brief note: I know the subject may not be new, but the words are all mine.




Irving sewed the last thread in place, tugging on the thick black suture, snapping it with his teeth. A black jagged mouth laced its way vertically down the middle of her chest, effectively silencing  the mouth-slit he had made. Out of impulse, he pressed his ear onto the wound, listening for the sound.  The clockwork heart he had placed within her empty and cold breast began to tick, softly. Satisfied, he stood up, peeling off his bloody latex gloves. Pushing his glasses up onto his nose, he smiled at his work, his latest creation. Eve III.

The first was too afraid, too timid, she ran away screaming and naked from his touch. He recoiled from the memory of her tears mingling with the snot coming from her nose, drizzling down her face in viscous threads. Disgusting. He liked his women submissive, but the sniveling and the terror were no good to him. He despised weakness. She had preferred death to him, and he granted that to her, eventually.

 The second was too willful and had to be destroyed. At least, he’s pretty sure she was destroyed after hours of grappling and fighting with her in the basement lab. Eventually the clocks will stop on their own, and without his touch and guidance, they don’t start again. He learned that the bigger the heart, the stronger the woman.

They were no good to him when their heart stopped. Or when they were too willful. It would be a few hours before he’d know for sure what the new one was like, if he was going to keep her.

He waited, holding her hand, counting the hollow ticks sounding  from inside her. Eve III opened her eyes to her new life, dressed in a hospital gown, her back bare against the cold metal table. She drew her first breath, her eyes lighting on him, her expression first one of fear, and her tears looking like a mixture of brass and blood. After some time, measured by her heartbeat, he whispered the words into her ear he knew would respond to the machinery inside her. Eventually, her eyes melted from a look of alarm to one of adoration and desire.

 Maybe he’d call this one Goldilocks 1.0: he was fond of naming his prototypes after stories, and she seemed just right. But of course, there was always room for improvement.

Copyright December 02, 2011 All Right Reserved.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Almost the end of the semester!

I haven't been on here as often as I like, due in part to the end of the semester. Students and the day job comes first, and then the writing. Then the blog. I'll have a lot more time when the semester ends in two weeks, so my posts will be more sporadic until then. In the meantime, I've collected reams of material and read about a million books. I'm behind I know, but I have to pay the bills! Talk to you all soon!

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Thanksgiving Thoughts

Before I start the baking, I wanted to list a few things I am thankful for. Everyday I give thanks for my husband, because without him I don't know where I'd be. If I hadn't had the bad experiences that I've had in my life, I would never have met him, but I still can't make myself completely grateful for some of this shit I've gone through. But, here's a list of things I'm thankful for. It started out as 10 and evolved to 20.

1. My husband.
2. Paper books and the authors who write them
3. Music
4. Kindle
5. My four furry children
6. The internet
7. My writing, and my imagination that fuels it.
8. Hope that things will get better
9. A day job that I love (most of the time!)
10. The First Amendment and all my freedoms as an American
11. My individuality and creaticity
12. My Wiccan nature/faith/spirituality
13. Women everywhere
14. Zombie movies
15. Trash TV and soap operas because where would I be without my not-so-guilty pleasures?
16. My Master's Degree
17. Chocolate
18. Food
19. our warm woodstove
20. Magic and Faerieland, and the fact that despite everything, I still Believe...

And a special thanks to South Park for creating the Alien Thanksgiving episode because The Truth is Out There! I have some flash fiction based on this that I'd like to share if I can get around to posting it later.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Some thoughts on Anne McCaffery

I wanted to write my own tribute to the passing of Anne McCaffery. Like other writers and readers who posted about her passing I wanted to add my own contribution. This was sad news to hear, because some of her books were influential to me, not as much as a writer but definitely as a reader.
It's very difficult, in my opinion, to be a successful sci-fi writer. Sci-fi is a difficult genre to master, and Anne McCaffery did it--AND did it in a way that was enormously successful. What was also unique about her is that she was writing in the genre during a time when sci-fi was mostly dominated by the boy's club. One of the things that one sees a lot in sci-fi, unfortunately, is a lack of believable and realistic female characters you like to root for, or in roles in which women are typically wives, mothers, and the emphasis on their importance in the story has only to do with their reproductive qualities. Sadly, this trend still exists today. But Ms.McCaffery was one of the first, if not THE first woman sci-fi writer to break that stereotype. Yes, women can be leaders, as shocking as that can be.
And like many other readers and writers, I too discovered Anne McCaffery while in middle school. I will never forget one book in particular that helped to take me through some rough times, one I checked out from the library over and over again. So this is my small thank you for taking me to a cave by the ocean with a half dozen mini dragons, for writing this story, and many others, and for making dragons into companions.

Friday, October 14, 2011

Friday Reads

I almost never buy a book this fast, but after reading just the first few pages as a sample, I headed right over to amazon to download it to my kindle. I love new book day! It's like getting presents from yourself. Now, I have: Full Dark, No Stars by Stephen King, The Poison Diaries by Mayrose Wood, and Succubus Revealed by Richelle Mead. I have no idea where to start, its a buffet of literary goodness!

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Links?Blog What You Write About

Blog What You Write About:
Fox New Anchor Megan Kelly apparently thinks getting your period equals abortion:
--Who here can tell me what Critical Thinking means?

This Blog has endless helpful and useful advice for writers seeking representation, querying, publishing and editing--and more!

Ms Magazine asks: What Would Make "Whitney" Worth Watching?

I could ask the same thing of "New Girl". Even if I have a mini-crush on Zooey Dechanel, and even look like her a little, there's not much I can get out of that program, either.

Excellent Essay on the Writing Life: link to Christine Rose's blog:

Friday, September 23, 2011

Friday Reads

Friday Reads is a weekly meme supported by readers and other bookish folk from all over the world where everyone posts what they are reading this week. I love seeing what people from all over are reading, it not only gives me ideas on what to read if I'm ever stuck, inspires me to read something I may not have picked up otherwise, expands both my reading powers (which are already pretty powerful) and strengthens by own writing. This week I'm tackling: some old favorite for inspiration and comfort, and some new friends.
I'm finishing Skin Trade by Laurell K. Hamilton
I'm re-reading "Paint it Black" by Janet Fitch because I can't sty away. Plus the #fridaylistens audible version is narrated by Jennifer Jason Leigh!!
I'm starting: "The Jane Austen Book Club" by Karen Joy Fowler and I'm also starting "Night Veil" by Yasmine Galenorn. 
Linky Goodness!
Well Read, a Reader's Retreat
Arts in the Prison System:
Launch the Book News:
Blog What You Write About: Ms. Magazine on the Playboy Club (TV Series)
Retro Erotica Covers--a personal love of my own, there's some great stuff here!

Monday, September 19, 2011

Friday, September 16, 2011

Friday Reads

Friday Reads is a weekly meme supported by readers and other bookish folk from all over the world where everyone posts what they are reading this week. I love seeing what people from all over are reading, it not only gives me ideas on what to read if I'm ever stuck, inspires me to read something I may not have picked up otherwise, expands both my reading powers (which are already pretty powerful) and strengthens by own writing. This week I'm tackling:

I've only read the first few paragraphs, but wow, I think I'm going to enjoy this. It's full of magic, which can be really tricky to write, but I'm confident this is going  to be a great read. Ms. Galenorn has a pretty intense following of loyal readers, and hopefully by the end of this, I'll be one of them!

Literary notes of interest that I've hand-picked for this week:
Movie Trailer: The Rum Diary

Top 10 Pick Up Lines to Use on a Girl Reading on an E-Book Reader

Movies from Books: I Don't Know How She Does It; Drive; Straw Dogs

Blog What you Write About:
"But I'm too pretty to do homework!"

The Power of Locavesting

Especially great for a Friday:

The Power of Locavesting

Top 10 Lists for Book-to-Film Adaptation Fans

Top 10 Lists for Book-to-Film Adaptation Fans

Friday, August 26, 2011

Friday Reads

Friday Reads is a weekly meme supported by readers and other bookish folk from all over the world where everyone posts what they are reading this week. This week I'm tackling:
For some reason, I like the book covers from different countries better. The US book cover is too computer generated looking for me. This is more like how I pictured Georgia Kincaid to look. One of the great things about this succubus series is that the main character of Georgia Kincaid is a character you can't wait to hang out with, much like Anita Blake in Laurel K Hamilton's books. Or Raylene in Cherie Priest's "Bloodshot". (I can't wait until the second installment in the Cheshire Red Reports, coming out September 6th!!)
Needless to say, I can't wait ntil I get to hang out with Georgia later tonight!

Friday, August 19, 2011

Friday Reads

Friday Reads is a weekly meme supported by readers and other bookish folk from all over the world where everyone posts what they are reading this week. This week I'm tackling:

I am addicted to this author and this series. I haven't made my way to the Bloodlines series yet, but like Laurel K. Hamilton and other authors I think are mega talented, once I read something I like, I have to read everything they've written.
A YouTube response to the Facebook "I Hate Reading" page:
Blaze Romances:
Have you joined the #scriptchat gang on FB yet?
Why to avoid Publish America:
Vachel Lindsay, performance poet

The Writer's Cafe Daily is out!

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Trailer Thursdays, Writing Prompt and Links

Movie Trailer: The Woman in Black

Casting for The Company You Keep and The Gray Man

Top 10 lists for Book to Film Adaptations:

Macmillan: Videos for All These THings I've Done: (Birthright): Books: Gabrielle Zevin

Writing Prompt:
On August 18, 1817, a special committee was set up to collect evidence for the Gloucester Sea Serpent, which according to witnesses was between 80 to 100 ft. in length, with "a head as broad as a horse." Who doesn't enjoy a good lock ness monster story? Many writers begin writing with questions, the biggest of which is: "What if?" Who or What was the Gloucester Sea Serpent? Many times in doing research on a subject I find myself asking questions and developing a story in my head as I do. And really, the world needs more Sea Monster tales!

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Writer Wednesday

Juicy linky goodness! Awesome links for today plus a writing excercize, mostly because I had a friend complaining of writer's block today.

Excercise to banish writer's block:
I've used this excercise before in my own blocked moments, and in my classes. I'm a huge fan of the cut up.
Write a bio of yourself in about a paragraph (that's 5-7 sentences). Cut the paragraphy down to individual words. Mix and match.You'll be surprised what you come up with--a completely different life history! You can do this with newspaper articles, magazines, old books you don't mind cutting up, poems, whatever...

In other news:
Book banning continues in VA:

BookLamp Launches a Pandora For Books

How NOT to open a novel is here.(tip 'o the hat to James Scott Bell)

@sf_fandom: Sci Fiction World: Science fiction iPhone and iPad apps:
SF Guide:

This is a free online conference for writers WriteOnCon (tip 'o the hat to Sara Megibow)

Cool Blog: Girlfriends Book Club:

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Links Galore for Teaser Tuesday!

Pennie Picks The Hangman's Daughter

Bluestockings Re-Opened in NYC

Your Child's Writing Life

Story Ideas: Culled from Twitter: Doesn't this seem like a GREAT story idea?

Five Tips for Writing Erotica:

Ms. Review of "The Help"

Blog What You Write About: Tide thinks your daughter is a big old lesbo because she plays with blocks and wears camo:

Re-imagining Angels: Paranormal Romance Blog: Michele Hauf

Bluestockings Re-Opened in NYC

Visions of Magic: The Awakening by Regan Hastings Review

I think its interesting the stuff you learn about yourself when you become a blogger/reviewer/professional reader.

For instance, in the case of this review, I've learned that I have more to say about books I dislike than books I love, which is a little weird, but I think someone once said you remember bad experiences more because they cause you so much grief you remember suffering more than happiness. And that's what I remember from this book: suffering.
Don't get me wrong, I don't like trashing books, or authors.Most people know once I start a book I can't abandon it, I have to read it all the way through.
I admit that from about the middle of the book on, I had to scan instead of read. It was a way to appease my conscience and "leave no book behind" policy.
The plot was thin. The characters were cardboard cuttouts. There was no danger, no sypmthay, no empathy, no ticking clock. I couldn't care about the characters, which were vague and one dimentional.
The main character (Shea) tried to be the independent female characteristic of paranormal romance, but her every decision and every move, even going to the bathroom, depended on her horny protector (Torin) whose sole goal in life is to have as much sex as possible in order to help them "gain more power". I found the male characters to be typically chauvanistic and the females typically weak. The main witchy opponent to the two main characters had no motivation behind her actions, only that she wanted Shea to join her, but the reason for that was never made clear either. Maybe a vague reference to "gain more power". Didn't feel it.
Also, my eyes hurt as I read the same line over and over and over in the book "He would do anything to protect his woman." or "He would let nothing stop him from protecting his woman." I couldn't take it. A feminist book, this is not. If you want lucid plot and strong female leads packed with action and adventure and high magic, look somewhere else.

Trailer Thursday (8)

Book News: Samuel L. Jackson Narrates "Go the F*** to Sleep"

Friday, August 5, 2011

I discovered Richelle Mead quite by accident. Sort of. I'd heard of her through different blogs and tweets, but never persued her until I saw a book staring at me (of all places) in the grocery store. So I picked it up. And I am so intensely glad that I did. I really believe she's one of the best authors to come into the paranormal fantasy/romance urban fantasy genre. It's a hard genre to write, I know, because I'm a writer too. It's so hard to avoid seeming too cutesy or cliche or self-deprecating in this genre, yet still maintain a style people can read and feel well-read at the same time. Put her on your wish list, to buy now list, kindle list, or challenge list, and I assure you you'll love spending time with this character!

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Teaser Tuesday (7)


"Visions of Magic: The Awakening" by Regan Hastings

Teaser: "Sometimes safety was the open road and a cold wind at your back."

I have to admit I'm having trouble getting going with this one, but I'm pushing through to see if the enormous potential it promises will deliver.

In Other Literary News, here are some links culled from the Internet of interest to writers and readers both:

Some of my favorite writers recently convened to, shall we say, match wits. Read all about it here:

Wits: Minnesota Public Radio

BLog What You Write About: Plot/Story Ideas

Orna Ross'S Journey of Writing Novel online

Blog What You Write About: Story Elements

Blog What You Write About: Plot/story Ideas

The WRiting Life: Writing and Social Networks

Book Review: Big Sex Little Death By Susie Bright

Monday, June 27, 2011

Monday Morning Pages (5)

Many things to share today, including cool blogs, interesting links and a writing exercise.

Jump over to Ethan O. Roses's blog to read some free stories and get some insight into writing  on flash fiction--it could inspire you to challenge yourself!

Erotica writer and sexpert Susie Bright's Daily is out over at I've been reading and listening to Susie Bright since the late 90's, so long she's like an old friend. Not for the faint of heart.

More free e-books! Twitter was all a-tweet with links this weekend. Christine Rose is the YA author of the bestselling Rowan of the Wood series. Read her books, then send her some love!
Writing exercise. Try writing a scene based on a generic conflict scenario, that you can then tailor to your own particular writing style. A great place to mine for these scenarios are places like Dear Abby or Miss Manners, in which people write to the columnists with various problems or conflicts that need resolving. The responses of the columnists aren't as important as writing the scene given by the person. Pick a scene that appeals to you, and write: 10 minutes or 10 pages, whichever comes first! 

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Writing Ideas

Even though I traditionally use Thursdays as a spot for exploring books to media, such as movies or tv series, I'd like to start posting interesting links that make for good stories, or could serve as ideas for characters, monologues, short stories, 10-minute or one act plays, or other writerly endeavors. Here's the first!

Women Priests Ordained in Maryland | Women's Interviews - The Daily Femme

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Teaser Tuesday (7)

My selection this week is "The Edge of Grace" by Christa Allen. The book blurb goes like this: "A family ultimately explores the struggle of acceptance, the grace of forgiveness, and moving from prejudice to loving others as they are, not as we'd like them to be." 
The story intrigues me because I don't normally, as a rule, read Christian themed books, (I do read and accept GLBTQ literature) but this one promises to be a slight departure from mainstream Christian fiction. I have no quotes from the book yet, but if the book blurb is correct, I'll be seeing if it promises what it delivers. If I encounter "we hate anyone who isn't like us" kind of prejudices with no turnaround or reversal at the end where the character realizes they've been mean and judgmental the whole time, then I promise a scathing review. If this novel does deliver acceptance between beginning and end, I will be one happy blogger. So we'll see, won't we? =)

Monday, June 6, 2011

Monday Morning Pages

Using fairy tales, myths, legends, songs and urban legends are a great way to get the muse invited in, start or end a story, or to get a stuck story going again. Resources abound all over the internet, but I find that is a fun place to start because it blends humor with information (sort of) and everything, including urban legends themselves, should be taken with a grain of salt. 
Pick one of these stories and start writing. The legend itself will give you your outline for you. It will help flex unused writing muscles, or help unstick you if you get stuck on a different story. The point is, a writer writes.

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Teaser Tuesday (6)

In this week's teaser Tuesday, there are so many great quotes, I've taken my favorites from around the web. 
The Book: "Halfway to the Grave" by Jeaniene Frost
"I'm saying that I'm a moody, insecure, narrow-minded, jealous, borderline homicidal bitch, and I want you to promise me that you're okay with that, because it's who I am, and you're what I need." 

"Don't kiss me like a woman if you're going to treat me like a child." 

"He looked at the box with interest. 'Well, well. Five speeds. Heat and massage. Deep, penetrating action. Sure this isn't yours?" 

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Waiting on Wednesday (5)

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme sponsored by Breaking the Spine in which bloggers, authors and other bookish folk talk about books they are highly anticipating.

This week, an exciting anthology of kick-ass women and their heroines due for release on June 7th, 2011. One of the staples of the urban fantasy genre is a heroine who is strong independent and, to use a buzz word, nothing short of fierce, so it makes sense to dedicate a whole volume of work to these strong women and the women who write them. 

Edited by Kerrie Hughes and Rachel Caine, Chicks Kick Butt features original stories from thirteen authors, eleven of whom are New York Times bestsellers:
- Rachel Caine (with a story from her bestselling Weather Wardens universe)
- L.A. Banks
- Rachel Vincent
- Karen Chance
- Lilith Saintcrow
- Cheyenne McCray
- Susan Krinard
- Jeanne Stein
- Jenna Black
- Susan Krinard
- Jeanne Stein
- Jenna Black
- Elizabeth Vaughan
- Carole Nelson Douglas
- P.N. Elrod
- Nancy Holder

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Teaser Tuesday (5)

"His voice was soft and sweet as molasses; but my mother once told me that you had to trust that the first thing out of a person's mouth was truth. After they have a chance to think about it, they'll change what they say to be more socially acceptable, something they think you'll be happier with, something that will get the results they want." 

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Trailer Thursday (6)

This week in the book related TV, Audio and Movie news:

Television: Villains of All Nations

Audible has launched ACX, the Audiobook Creation Exchange, that allows "any professionally published book, new or old, to become a professionally produced audiobook." The site links authors, publishers and agents with narrators and studios who work in a variety of ways: deals and contracts have several structures. Audio titles that evolve from ACX are distributed by Audible (including Amazon and iTunes) for at least seven years, either exclusively or nonexclusively. Authors can also narrate their own works. (Check out a video about this audio venture here.)

ACX was launched in part because of "the tremendous demand for audiobooks created by the growth of the digital audiobook sector," which is regularly the second-fastest-growing category next to e-books in the Association of American Publisher monthly sales reports. Noting that the average Audible members listens to close to 17 audiobooks a year, Donald Katz, founder and CEO of Audible, said, "Close to 95% of new, professionally published books do not become audiobooks. Most authors and millions of avid listeners are disenfranchised from this important market. ACX was created to change this."
ACX launches with more than 1,000 titles listed. ACX also includes some 100 audiobook narrators and producers, including Dick Hill, Bill Dufris, Tavia Gilbert and Paul Boehmer. In addition, author Neil Gaiman is using ACX to create his own line, called Neil Gaiman Presents, consisting of titles by other authors never before available in unabridged audio. "I'm constantly astonished at how many great books, beloved books and books that have a special place in my heart are not and mostly never have been available as audiobooks," he said. "ACX seems a brilliant .
~From Shelf Awareness May 12, 2011 Thursday

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Teaser Tuesday (4)

I've been having a hard time getting into "Boneshaker". I'm being patient because this is really my first steampunk novel. Yes, I'm a steampunk virgin. Let me say though, that my hard time is more due to a time constraint and other pesky life things getting in the way than any animosity towards the characters or the writing. I AM getting married in 5 weeks, so I'm trying to cut myself some slack. But I came across this quote, from the author Cherie Priest herself about "Boneshaker" and not from the book itself, but I thought it was funny and relevant, so here it is. Her quote alone makes me want to keep reading, especially since I haven't gotten to the zombie part yet....
"OMG YOU GUYS it has come to my attention that SOMEONE on the internet is saying that my fictional 19th century zombies are NOT SCIENTIFICALLY SOUND. Naturally, I am crushed. To think, IF ONLY I’d consulted with a zombologist or two before sitting down to write, I could’ve avoided ALL THIS EMBARRASSMENT." -Cherie Priest

Friday, May 6, 2011

Friday Reads (4)

Friday Readsis a weekly meme supported by readers and other bookish folk from all over the world where everyone posts what they are reading this week. This week I'm tackling:
One of the best lines from this book: "Dolls with no little girls around to mind them were sort of creepy under any conditions." 
Dolls do have a creep factor to them, don't they?Often used as metaphors for women and girls, I think dolls can be as creepy as clowns in that they sort of represent something that is unknown in us, a archetype or an empty vessel that can hold our fears and contain that which is broken in us...

3500 Pounds will be back next week some reviews and writing updates and other fun stuff, so stay tuned! 

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Teaser Tuesday (3)

Here's my teaser for today, and here's the link for this weekly host at Should Be Reading which posts the rules. 
"You say that like I have a choice. These are the ideas that come to me. These are the ideas that have always come to me. If it can bleed me,eat me, or fuck me, I want to write about it. -L.K. on why she writes about sex and monsters in 'Flirt' Afterword

Friday, April 22, 2011

Friday Reads (4)

Friday Readsis a weekly meme supported by readers and other bookish folk from all over the world where everyone posts what they are reading this week. This week I'm tackling:

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Waiting on Wednesday (4)

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme sponsored by Breaking the Spine in which bloggers, authors and other bookish folk talk about books they are highly anticipating. 

Today I take a slight departure from both National Poetry Month and my usual waiting on wednesday fare to something a little different than my normal urban fantasy/paranormal romance/young adult genres. I do love to read the occasional memoir, especially of women, so I was interested and curious when I came across "The Last of the Live Nude Girls" by Sheila McClear. 
I'm facinated by the lives and stories of women who have lived and worked in the sex industry. I'm a huge advocate for a dialogue about sex in this country, and I think we need more first hand accounts of what its really like in the trenches, so to speak. It's a really tenuous line to cross and the debate circles around in several circles: is sex work empowering or degrading to women? Can it/is it both? I can't wait to see what Ms. McClear has to say about it, so that's why this book is my pick this week.
Title: The Last of the Live Nude Girls: A Memoir
Author: Sheila McClear
Publisher: Soft Skull Press (August 1, 2011)

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Trailer Thursday (4)

In the spirit of National Poetry Month, I'd like to post some excerpts of poetry slams, one of my very favorite types of poetry. Love it!

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Poet Profile: Eileen Myles

Poet Eileen Myles brings moments out of time and shows the reader, through the particular lens of her perspective, the significance of that moment, or sometimes a shared universal experience in matters like love, war and death.
Many of these moments can be found in her volume of poetry, School of Fish. In this volume of poetry, she brings to the reader personal moments of experience.

The moments Myles presents in her poems range from the dark explorations of the possible reasons behind her father’s suicide, to the more mundane: sitting on a park bench watching her dog chase geese in a park.

She writes of stripes of light, of her dog Rosie and city animals; she writes of water and homeless men; she writes of her father and food; she writes of being a lesbian and what it might be like if she were a man.
In this collection, Myles states her poetic manifesto in The Lesbian Poet. She writes about her identity as a lesbian poet, and the responsibilities she has to both men and women.
In many of her poems she writes about being a man, or feeling like a man, and she also writes about being female. She writes to an audience of both men and women and wants both to be included as an audience.
Although she had been celebrated as a feminist poet, and indeed identifies herself as a lesbian, Myles clearly states in her poetic manifesto that her poems are for everyone. She is not an isolationist.


Her most famous poem in this collection is Merk, a poem she has since been defined by in poetic circles. Almost anyone can relate to the feeling of being “eaten” in society, trying to survive on one’s own, or trying to speak to a lover and gain their understanding, which is what Merk is about. This poem encompasses many of her main themes in her work: being a lesbian, food, loving and death.
The poem speaks of being safe in a lover’s mouth as a piece of food, living forever as a part of that person. This can be seen in one of the lines of the poem: “We must offer ourselves/up as food or eat/someone.”

New American Poetry

Her poetry most closely resembles “New American” poetry, as stylized by Beat Poets Gary Snyder and Robert Creely, because she shares some traits with them: especially the idea that America has so much potential, and that poems should make us think about America and its complicated history.
Like Creely and Snyder, Myles mixes metaphor and reality, which is at times specific and at times general.
Myles chooses to write in a free form style, and rarely, if ever, does her poetry rhyme. The lines are usually very short, sometimes only consisting of one word, usually not longer than five or so together. The stanzas are equally short, consisting mostly of three to four short lines.
There is a tremendous amount of white space on the page, which gives the reader a real sense of reading poetry as opposed to a work that is more narrative.
Myles has described words as magical and transporting, the whole reason many people read poetry and other kinds of literature, to feel something extraordinary, to escape, to be inspired, to look through someone else’s eyes for moment, to forget, to remember, to gain perspective.
Myles expresses a desire to continue to be a lens of perspective with which to view the devouring city and society for anyone who wishes to survive.

Myles, Eileen. School of Fish, 1997, Black Sparrow Press, Santa Barbara, CA, 193 pages
(IBSN: 1-57423-032-8)

This is a reposting of an article I wrote a while ago for, regarding her poetry collection, School of Fish. Learn more about Eileen Myles and all her awesome poetry @ her

Monday, April 11, 2011

Morning Pages (4) National Poetry Month

National Poetry Month is a month long poetry party celebrating poets and poetry, began in 1996 by the Academy of American Poets. The concept of NPM is to gain some attention to individual poets and poetry in general to the media, to what poetry is, and to celebrate living and dead poets.
The goals of NPM are to bring notice to the accomplishments of the American poets, expose more people to the awesomeness of reading (and watching, and performing) poetry, expose poetry to the public, make poetry more important in our education system, increase poetry sales, and encourage people of all ages to write their OWN poetry.
This week I'll be posting some poetry themed teasers and audio and video clips highlighting my favorite poets and poetry.

On Loneliness, Pt. 2

He stops short of the entryway, and his shadow falls long over the carpet. "Come out and say how-do," I say jokingly. It was a f...