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A Few of My Favorite Things, 2015 Edition

I’ll start with a downer: 2015 was an awful, miserable beast of a year, and bidding it good riddance and wishing for a better 2016 kind of strikes me as perverse magical thinking. Bad luck, human caprice, and institutional corruption and racism don’t really obey the artificial thresholds of calendar years.

But nonetheless the end of a year provides a time for reflection. There were good and beautiful things too. But some of these bright spots in a dark year are below.

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books

Weekend Reads, Mid-October, Plus Some Thoughts on Myers-Briggs.

Lots of good reads the last two weeks, though I ended up writing on the Myers-Briggs Test instead.

First up, M. Sereno’s poem, which left me speechless — all I could say, repeatedly, was “wow:”

Diversity: what a strange and bloodless word, rinsed clean of the gore
birthed in war and struggle and the breaking of bones, cracking teeth,
the slice to open veins: to speak, write, survive.

Reasons I Checked out of Diversity Discussion Du Jour” (Awitin Mo)

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books music

An Act of Literary Vandalism.

My mother, a librarian and English lit major, loved books so much she couldn’t sell or give them away. So I grew up in a house surrounded by books, and learned early on about the joys of reading and — as you can imagine from having a librarian for a mother — how to properly take care of a book. Always use a bookmark; don’t bend the cover; always remember who you lend a book to, and don’t forget to ask for it back.

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books

Weekend Reads, Late September.

Megan Martin has an interview with me in SmokeLong Quarterly. It was a thrill to be asked such great questions, and be able to think and write about the writing process. I just hope I didn’t come across too… weird.

Speaking of weird. Given my sad history of starting and stopping projects — or quitting writing altogether — I thought I’d work again on the nth draft of a creative nonfiction piece I started writing a few years ago. It’s been a struggle, since back then, when I was exclusively trying my hand at CNF, I couldn’t see how fiction writers could just create things out of “thin air,” or so I thought. Now I’m frustrated as I work on this piece because I can’t just make shit up.

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books

Weekend Reads, Late August Edition.

So it’s been a while since I’ve cobbled these together. So: something old, something new.

First off, some fiction: