It has been a big month!
The anthology I’ve been editing over the past year is finally finished, printed, and waiting in boxes in my living room for this week’s first mailing session and book launch party. It’s beautiful. I love it so much and I can’t wait to get it into the hands of many, many readers.
I launched my Indiegogo campaign and in a matter of weeks, my friends and family launched ME on the road to New Mexico. I leave next Friday morning for a weekend writing workshop with Tupelo Press, one big step toward finishing by first collection of poems. I’m amazed and so grateful.
And yesterday I found out that I was accepted into this year’s Teaching Artists Studio, run by Young Audiences of Oregon and SW Washington. I’m beyond excited for this series of intensive weekend professional development workshops for practicing artists who teach young people. It’s going to be incredible, and it starts in just a few weeks.
With all of this excitement (and more…), I’ve been sleeping less and thinking a lot about details. Wine cups for the event, mailers for book distribution, renting a mini-van in Albuquerque so I can carpool to the Truchas workshop with other poets. Emails and press releases and even an interview.
In between, I’ve managed a few naps, some hasty notes for poems, and sneaky bits of new reading (Mark Doty’s memoir Firebird, strange and beautiful; Joan Didion’s A Year of Magical Thinking, because I still haven’t read it; Denise Levertov’s Light up the Cave, a favorite.) There’s a sinkful of dirty dishes in the kitchen, and a pile of rebar and pvc pipe in the garden, waiting to be turned back into a hoophouse for our winter bed. The ants are making inroads and the romaine lettuces are shivering, but they’ll have to wait.
I’ve been elbow deep in the pre-conference assigned writing, which is challenging and engaging– and hard to make time for during the week. I just find myself with so little energy left after commuting, teaching, prepping, commuting again, and catching up on the aforementioned details. But I’m trying.
I logged a pretty weak three hours this week. I had plans for some good writing time today, but insomnia last night and a power outage at the grocery store midday had other plans. So here I am, catching up and hoping to park myself at my desk after church tomorrow.
Meanwhile, I keep looking for moments to dip into this well of gratitude, and it brings me energy. I’m thankful for the support I feel all around me, including the community of writers I met in my MFA program. After a year apart from them, I was delighted when one plucky poet wrangled a few of us together for what I hope is a monthly Skype workshop, preceded by an exchange of our current poems in progress. That’s this Wednesday and I’m looking forward to seeing their sweet faces and connecting about our work.