Attacus Atlas & Other Inventions: What I Wished I Knew When I Was Starting Out

Tuesday, November 27, 2018

Missing my poetry-mom Lucille Clifton especially today. Here she is reading aloud a poem of hers that I love. Until I got to graduate school, until I got to the people who would become my writing family and my writing community, I wasn’t encouraged much by my peer set in creative writing classes. Especially while I lived and worked in the Deep South. I always felt out of place, out of…

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Publish or Perish: Two Sides of the Same Coin

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

I was a competitive gymnast growing up and the vault one of my best events. At least until this one competition, when my teammate fumbled her vault by running right into it instead of hand springing over it. As I watched her try again – running into it again – two things occurred to me: 1) Our coach was going to FREAK OUT. 2) Vaulting was impossible. I mean, how…

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A Sense of Place: Writing Home, at Home and Away

Monday, September 16, 2013

As I start a draft of this post, I’m sitting in a booth at a chain restaurant that calls itself a bakery, with the remains of a salad at one elbow and “Isn’t She Lovely” by Stevie Wonder—not his best song—playing overhead. There are three other people with computers or tablets glowing in front of them nearby. I like to write in café noise. We are legion. Science reports that…

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