Notes on an Excellent Literary Day

Yesterday (September 29th) was an excellent literary day for me.

First thing in the morning I registered for workshops led by fine authors Brenda Miller and Kathleen Flenniken. Proceeds from the workshops will benefit the Sue C. Boynton Poetry Contest.

Brenda Miller is co-author (with Holly Hughes and Norman Fischer) of The Pen and the Bell: Mindful Writing in a Busy World (2012). See it on the Village Books website here. Miller’s latest collection of essays is titled Listening Against the Stone (2011). See it here. Her essays are superb; “Blessing of the Animals” (in an earlier essay collection) is wonderful and profound.

Kathleen Flenniken is the new Washington State Poet Laureate (2012-2014) and author of Plume: Poems (2012). See it here. Plume is a poetic meditation on the Hanford Nuclear Reservation here in Washington.  Her poems in Plume are brilliant. I particularly admire the different forms she uses throughout her collection.

I’m looking forward to attending their workshops!

At work–still early in the day–I met poet and educator Mary Cornish, author of the exquisite poetry collection Red Studio (2007). It won the FIELD Poetry Prize (2006). See it on the Village Books website here.

I told her I was honored to meet her finally, and described Red Studio as a wonderful collection. I added that I especially admired her use of art-related vocabulary throughout her poems. She was astonished that I was familiar with her collection and grateful for my comments.

Mary is a very generous and lovely person: she immediately wanted to know where she could read my poems!

When I returned home I checked my mailbox in the clubhouse and found my contributor’s copy of American Society: What Poets See, an anthology edited by David Chorlton and Robert S. King (2012). It’s beautiful. Read about it here.

[I can’t figure out how to add an image of the cover here. Hopefully soon!]

I am so grateful to have my long poem “I am no different” published in American Society: What Poets See. My poem is also online, on the FutureCycle Press website–in its archives. Read my poem here.

I’m so pleased to have a copy of the anthology. Many of the poems are difficult and challenging due to the subject matter; this makes them that much more powerful and important.

Finally, I tweaked and sent poems in to one of my favorite literary journals, Clover, A Literary Rag, edited by Mary Gillilan and Norman L. Green. I submitted “Terminal Ward with Asides to Dad,” “Diorama with Water Feature, Mom’s Ashes, and Robins,” and “Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Great Blue Heron.”

It’s such an honor to have my pieces considered for Clover.

Finally, I read emails from writerly friends and wrote emails to writerly friends.

What elements comprise an excellent literary day? Writing, committing to improvement of writing and craft, engaging with other writers and poets, reading other writers’ work, and sending in our pieces.

I think I’ll deepen my commitment to doing these things, every day.

Thank you for reading. If you are a writer, press on with YOUR writing!

Sincerely, and best wishes, Andy

P.S. You may be wondering why the bulk of the links above are to listings on the Village Books’ website. Village Books is a fine independent bookstore! Support independent bookstores.

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About Andrew Shattuck McBride

I am a writer, editor, writing coach, and consultant. I work in a variety of genres, including poetry, short stories, and creative non-fiction. I also have a couple of novels simmering on back burners. THANK YOU to Nan Macy of Village Books for taking this photo (June 2011).
This entry was posted in Andrew Shattuck McBride Writer, Authors, Books, Notes on the Literary Life, Poets and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

8 Responses to Notes on an Excellent Literary Day

  1. Pingback: What Constitutes an Excellent Literary Day? | Andrew S. McBride ~ Book and Writers' Coach

  2. What a marvelous day that sounds like. Here’s to many more like it!

  3. sonofwalt says:

    Great to read that you had an encouraging day in writing. And congratulations on the FIELD award!

  4. sonofwalt says:

    Oh, and I just read “I Am No Different.” It’s wonderful. Just wow. I needed that.

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