What I’m Reading: God is Dead, 1

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Sweet cover design. Neat concept. Not 100% original as a premise.
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This might be the end of the world but at least I’ve got this tube top. Also who wears fishnet arm warmers? This was published in 2013. There’s no reason for fishnet arm warmers. Bonus: Her role is that of armed personal assistant to a bunch of old genius atheists who call themselves The Collective. This is my first hint that I’ve just stumbled across /r/atheism’s clandestine fantasy file: The world is being overrun by religious idiots, and it’s up to us and one poorly dressed sexpot with guns to stop them.
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Women as status symbols … just because.
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And who doesn’t enjoy a little chortle over the machismo of the U.S. military?

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But I do love when the Hindu gods show up.

On the other hand, it’s fiction. I will at least leaf through the second issue in the comic shop.

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prepping the apocalyptic poetry

Today, I’m listening to this music and brainstorming about my idea for Poetry for Your Personal Apocalypse. I went on Flickr for some ideas…

Apocalypse?

I started thinking about the meaning of this apocalypse idea that we’ve been batting around for centuries, about all the things we fear the most…

These Burdens

Bathroom Graffiti

But I don’t want to just wallow in the grief and fear that fuels this end of the world madness. I think poetry is meant to get us through it.

Art for Healing 004

houston rain on the lonely bicycle : manhattan (2004)

I think this project is about finding the goodness amidst what feels like insurmountable negativity, which is sortof what life in general is about in this world.

It’s ambitious, I admit. We’ll see how far I get with it.

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Poetry for Your Personal Apocalypse (the poem that started it all)

Last night, I made a list of apocalyptic words and wrote what I think will be the first poem in my 2013 collection: Poetry for Your Personal Apocalypse. 

The other day, I sortof jokingly mentioned on Twitter that I want to write a collection of post-apocalyptic poetry for 2013, but the more I thought about it, the funnier and more amazing it sounded. I’m seriously thinking I want to do this. At Risk, the collection of poems and essays that I put out this year, isn’t really a coherent collection. It’s more like a sampler tray of the types of writing that I do. On the other hand, Dirty Water Coffee is a more curated collection with all the essays working toward a central theme. I’ve never really attempted to do that with poetry before, although I went through a phase in junior high where I wrote very dark little poems based on photos of fashion models wearing scary futuristic goth outfits. Anyway, this would be more intentional.

Here’s the poem that started it all. Maybe I will edit later. I dunno.

poetry for your personal apocalypse

I love the human heart
the monster heart
the alien heart
tantamount
the eyes of the heart — colorless
blind to all but the shine
of the true true truth.

I love the human heart,
the thing that bubbles up,
the submarine breaching
the surfacing to view
of oceanic you
tantamount
the glitter
of a thousand mirrors
shattered on the sea.

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Happy NaNoWriMo, everyone!

You might have noticed that after releasing my two books, I hit a big slump. I had several ideas of what I’d like to work on next, but I couldn’t quite get started on anything. Plus, October has been an intense month for me, full of traveling, friends visiting, the big Halloween bash, and the corresponding crash after all that. I needed something to get myself back on track, so I’ve decided to participate in NaNoWriMo. That is, National Novel Writing Month.

I like to imagine this is sortof how I look while writing: all dainty, peaceful and softly focused on the task at hand. (Also, doesn’t she look a lot like Drew Barrymore? Weird.)

A Woman Writing A Letter

In reality, it’s probably not so pretty. I sit at the coffee shop and stare at my laptop like I’m negotiating a divorce settlement with it, occasionally pausing to rub my face and eyes with open palms as though I should be muttering, “I wish we’d never met.” However, as pained as my writing face may look to the casual observer, the practice of putting words on a page remains the most satisfying thing in the world to me.

Today being November 1st, it’s the first day of NaNoWriMo. So far, I’ve written 1,651 words of my 50,000 word goal. I’m hoping to have another cup of coffee soon and do another round. I’d like to get ahead of the game early in case I have slow days later.

Although I recently released my first book, Dirty Water Coffee, and published a second little volume, At Risk, only a couple weeks later, I’m one of these compulsive people who need to be working on something and find it hard to cope with life between projects. I normally have a strict “no talking about the new project” policy, but I’m telling you this now because they say NaNo is a good thing to tell people about. I’ll be attempting to write around 2,000 words per day, but in week two or three when I don’t feel like writing and can’t quite dig my way out of the plot hole I’ve created, I’m going to need your support.

I’m trying to write fiction. I’ve tried writing short stories plenty of times, but the trouble was that I never really had a story I wanted to tell. I just wanted to experiment with fiction for its own sake. As a result, I wound up with some pretty passages of description, very little plot, and completely stilted dialog. So, when I signed up for the NaNo site, I marked myself as a “rebel,” meaning I would be writing something other than the strictly defined novel. At one point, I planned to write a series of travel essays, which I had already started, but that would be too easy. I can easily write one essay per day if I have a plan, and NaNo is supposed to be a challenge. Plus, I had this other story I wanted to try and tell, and I wasn’t sure if I could do it or if I could even bring myself to write fiction. So I decided to try. NaNo is only one month, which is really not too long to try and work on something new and scary. If it works, awesome. If it doesn’t, then I still have all the time in the world to write those things I already know how to do.

I am telling myself right now that I can afford to write this badly because I’m going to hand the whole mess over to an editor the moment it’s done. And I’m assuming it will indeed be completed at some point. I’ll do my best to update here regarding how much I’ve written each day. I’m still too shy to talk much about the story itself and how it’s evolving, but perhaps as I get comfortable with it, I’ll be able to share more, so keep an eye here for more updates soon, as well as my true feelings about NaNoWriMo, as I’m sure they too will evolve in some artfully complicated fashion. And maybe if you’re lucky or I encounter some severe blogger’s block, I will also post some photos from our Halloween party and other misadventures which are sure to come.

xoxo,

Miss Dirt

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What is a feminist spiritual memoir, anyway?

When you tell people you’ve written a book, the automatically ask, “What’s it about.” In grad school, we hated when people aked us that question because we felt books were not supposed to be about something, rather that they were something in their own right.  We were all very high brow and obnoxious. Or maybe that was just me.

Anyway, I’ve been telling people my book is a feminist spiritual memoir, a description that typically earns me a lot of blank looks. So, let me explain.

The book is available on Kindle and in print now. If you like it, I would absolutely love for you to rate it and review it on Amazon and Goodreads.

Dirty Water Coffee for Kindle

Dirty Water Coffee in Print

P.S.

On re-watching this video, I realize how much I “uh” and “um” and “sooo.” But it’s out there, so that’s that. I’ll get better at this with time, I promise!

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