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Perpetual student.
Interests: listening to music, reading, writing, and playing video games.
Recent Activity
efore I begin with relaying here what I told a woman, on LinkedIn of all places, how to find a writing mentor, I just want to talk about the weather. The flooding is a lot worse than I thought it was in the Midwest. Somewhere in Iowa, somewhere in Nebraska, somewhere i n South Dakota, the waters exceed the borders of the rivers, the usual little creeks, and pour out all around them into the farmers' fields, into peoples' homes, into the roads. In spite of the heat and sun, the water sits. It is all at once impressive, intimidating,... Continue reading
Posted Jul 30, 2011 at Was It Something I Read?
have begun writing the actual comprehensive exams. In fact, I have a rough draft for the field paper, and that feels good. Also, I have a rough draft of the introduction for the focus, and that, too, feels good. Since I am a creative writer, and hardly a scholar, I don't know what will happen to those papers once they're done, submitted, passed (oh, please pass first time around. No revise and and resubmit, please), and I get to move on to the dissertation (which is mostly done). In my app tabs for Godzilla? gmail yahoo mail facebook this (TypePad)... Continue reading
Posted Jul 27, 2011 at Was It Something I Read?
Anderson, Sherwood. Winesburg, Ohio: A group of Tales of Ohio Small Town Life. 1919. New York: Bantam Classics, 1995. This collection of short stories are connected through George Willard, an aspiring writer. Although connected, many of the stories, all around characters that are in some way grotesque, can stand alone. Continue reading
Posted Jul 9, 2011 at Was It Something I Read?
ack towards the beginning of this annotating/comprehensive endeavor, I annotated Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby. I said something along the lines that it is a teachable book--perfect for high school and firsty and second year college students because it is so accessible. Even so, Macmillian decided to do an intermediate version. On Gatsby. Really. I could understand if it was something dense, like, I don't know The Sound and the Fury (actually, I haven't read that one yet, but I heard that it was difficult. Then again I was told that Moby Dick was hard dense, but it was an enjoyable... Continue reading
Posted Jul 6, 2011 at Was It Something I Read?
ife, for me, now consists of: one toddling twin who is going to the pot like a super star and one toddling twin who prefers not to two paragraphs of a twenty page paper completed. Well, two rough paragraphs. And a sort-of thesis. twenty-one books to read and annotate/or incorporate in one of two twenty page papers to write one form rejection from a literay magazine, one mean rejection from another literary magazine, about fifteen submissions out one flat full of mean and spiteful upstairs neighbors, who are being evicted the following annotation on Naomi Shihab Nye's Never in a... Continue reading
Posted Jul 1, 2011 at Was It Something I Read?
y annotation for the Murguía short story collection is short, but that doesn't mean it is not worth more time with savoring. I fell in love with his writing almost immediatelly. I was overwhelmed with the lyricism of his prose, which makes since--he is a poet as well as a prose writer. This is a slim collection--just nine stories--and worth the short time needed to read it, if not read it again. Without further ado, my annotation, which is less than this brief review: Murguía, Alejandro. This War Called Love. San Francisco: City Lights Publishers, 2002. A lovely collection of... Continue reading
Posted Jun 30, 2011 at Was It Something I Read?
eally having a great time at the Nebraska Summer Writing Conference! Today, I got to hear my conference workshop leader, Maud Casey read as well as fairytale writer (the adult kind) read. I went to the beginning of the Lemony Snicket event, but family duties called me away. Before I left, I won a mustache and eye patch. These photos are from my little LG Rumor Touch phone, so not the best quality. Enjoy! Continue reading
Posted Jun 14, 2011 at Was It Something I Read?
Just one bastard, really, despite what this post's title says, and that's Bone, the protagonist in Dorothy Allison's most famous work. I wrote this annotation a while ago--and I thought I added it!--but here it is today: Continue reading
Posted Jun 13, 2011 at Was It Something I Read?
gain, I have been busy. I wrote a draft for a novel in six days for the Nebraska Summer Writers Conference. Hopefully, Maud Casey, the teacher of the workshop that I'm in, will like it! The other writers in the class have interesting drafts, especially a woman named Shaw. Sadly, her draft isn't finished. She must finish it so that I may read it one day! So writing that draft is part of my excuse for not writing here sooner. The other parts are reading the other students' drafts, reading comps, and enjoying summer. I am reading a few books... Continue reading
Posted Jun 11, 2011 at Was It Something I Read?
was going to write a post the week before last week, but I got an email from a soon to be ex-fellow student (she has graduated and got a real job), who is also the assistant for our summer writer's conference, telling me to have my novel draft to her stat. Of course, I didn't know for sure that I was going to be in the fiction master class, which is a novel class, so I hadn't been working on it. I also did not have time to work on it. Mind you, I learned of my deadline last Tuesday,... Continue reading
Posted May 23, 2011 at Was It Something I Read?
efore this post, you'll find an earlier post with my last lecture. That one discusses revising fiction. This is the second and my final lecture, and it covers submitting short stories for publication. I have only published a few, but I'm giving out advice that I was given and advice that has worked for me. Here it is: Publishing Stories: A How To Submit Guide Have a thick skin! Know that if your work gets rejected, it is your work that is getting rejected, not you. Know, too, that it may not be that they do not like your work... Continue reading
Posted May 3, 2011 at Was It Something I Read?
his year, I taught "Introduction to Fiction Writing" for the first time. I scheduled too much for the class, and there were two more lectures I wanted to give which couldn't happen. I chose to conference with students instead. Below follows the first lecture, which is on revision. We spoke of revision in class--and did some revision exercises in class and at home--but I wanted to speak more about it. I also include some annotations on a few books on writing. Continue reading
Posted May 2, 2011 at Was It Something I Read?
ome time ago, I read Sherman Alexie's Reservation Blues for my comprehensive exam. It's not the first time I read anything by him--that would be Indian Killer, which gave him a reputation (as he admitted in this interview on NPR, also where he reads part of the best short story in existence that everyone MUST read, "What You Pawn I Will Redeem" ) for being angry (even Booklist gets it wrong about the humor; really, Alexie is funny even there!) but made me fall in love with his writing. I only read Indian Killer because I saw the movie Smoke... Continue reading
Posted Apr 26, 2011 at Was It Something I Read?
have decided to write one of my comprehensive exams on Russell Banks' The Sweet Hereafter, so I won't be writing an annotation on that book. Just a twenty page paper. I'm not sure about what just yet, but it'll have something to do with there being three first-person narrators. Also, I plan on writing this paper, which is on my field list (20th and 21st c narrative prose of the US), as more of a treatise on craft than as a critical analysis. Really, I suck at writing papers--only really good as a fiction writer--so treating as a look at... Continue reading
Posted Apr 20, 2011 at Was It Something I Read?
DeMisty is now following j
Apr 5, 2011
This is what I started writing way back in January, with some updates for today: irst, before I get into my hero, or one of my many heroes, Beckett, let me just say forgive me for the long absence, delay, et cetera. School got in the way. Then I was asked to apply for a job by friend, then I applied for a job, which took a lot of time. I didn't get it, but at least I now know what to expect when I actually join the market. That's a post for another day. Also before I get to... Continue reading
Posted Mar 26, 2011 at Was It Something I Read?
he hiatus was (is? I may still be a little slow in posting) due to school. But I think I'm back. For a while, until next semester. Some quick news. Benjamin Vogt, a friend from school, has a new chap book out with a lovely title and even lovier poems: Without Such Absence from the small publishing house Finishing Line Press. Another school chum, Steve Edwards, has a memoir out from the University of Nebraska Press called Breaking into the Backcountry. I have yet to read it, but I heard him read an excerpt and it was beautiful. I also... Continue reading
Posted Dec 6, 2010 at Was It Something I Read?
ight now, right at this moment, I am finalizing my syllabus (yep, singular: two sessions of one course). Right now, I am reading Complete Stories by Dorothy Parker. Right now, I am culling a few more readings to have on the ready and permanate schedule for my class. Right now, I am reading McTeague by Mr. Norris (I always imagined that Frank Norris should be addressed as mister). Right now, I am reading Writing Red. Right now, I am raising twin one-year-olds. Right now, I am dealing with both a rejection (but I'm attending your conference with the same story!)... Continue reading
Posted Aug 20, 2010 at Was It Something I Read?
ay what you like about my lateness to the game, but I just saw (or is it I've just seen? Is that the perfect tense? Just because I'm an English major doesn't mean I'm a grammarian!) Hurt Locker. I'm still not sure of my overall opinion--that is, if it's good, is it bad, et cetera--but I can say that the characters were definite types. At first, it was really hard to even remotely like the hero because he was playing the mess out of the gung ho cocky American cowboy type, but as expected, his flaws in the form of... Continue reading
Posted Aug 16, 2010 at Was It Something I Read?
DeMisty is now following j
Aug 16, 2010
ave not been posting regularly this week because next week is the last week before the first week of school! So now, I'm working on a syllabus, which I do not like, and reading the material I've assigned. I'm teaching Argument as Rhetoric course, which is another way of saying freshmen comp around here, and TAs in the English department are almost treated like real professors. This means we can go to departmental meetings and have somewhat of a say. This means we have get to write our own syllabi. This means we get to pick our own books and... Continue reading
Posted Aug 11, 2010 at Was It Something I Read?
kay, so first, let's start off with my annotation of Toni Morrison's Paradise. But, really first, let me just preface this by saying that I absolutely adore Toni Morrison. But, my adoration is not without criticism. Look at it this way: my husband is capable of getting bad breath sometimes. And I'm not afraid to tell him. He goes and brushes his teeth and solves the problem. He's sexy again! (My husband is TRES sexy!) Or, he may wear something that makes him more of a geek than usual (my husband is TRES sexy geek!), then I tell him, and... Continue reading
Posted Aug 9, 2010 at Was It Something I Read?
DeMisty is now following Lee Goldberg
Aug 6, 2010
Kingston melds legend, her past, her family's past, and her present in a very narrative (as in story-esque) memoir. To say that this work challenges the genre is an obvious statement, but still an understatment, and less than a page into the chapter “White Tigers,” I found I did not care about the genre because it is so well written. What is imprresive is Kingson's frankness and her courage to impart her social faux paus, such as bullying a fellow Chinese student for keeping silent. Continue reading
Posted Aug 6, 2010 at Was It Something I Read?
ow, I am taking a break from reading. One more day. So that will be a total of three days. Then I'm going to go on to something much shorter and, hopefully, lighter than Philip Roth's American Pastoral. So how many books do I have to read for my comprehensive exams? I'm down to forty-six from seventy-three. Not bad, right? Just have until Octoberish to finish the rest. Here's what's left, including the Invisible Man, which I am excited to read again because of this blog's recent post on the book. I really do dig Ellison's writing! (The ones in... Continue reading
Posted Aug 3, 2010 at Was It Something I Read?