Saturday, October 26, 2013

FIU Writers Conference Wrap-Up

I fought burn-out and migraines during the FIU Writer's Conference but it was well worth it!  I attended sessions held by Frances de Pontes Peebles, Lynne Barrett, Campbell McGrath and the keynote speech by Dennis Lehane, who is very funny!  He told the audience to get used to being "mutants" who care about this weird thing called writing and not to expect others to understand (paraphrasing wildly from memory here, but you get the idea!)

The best experience for me, naturally, was the poetry workshop held by FIU professor and poet Campbell McGrath.  We discussed various styles of poetry and then he assigned us two poems and then we read them and discussed them in class. He said one of my poems was "terrific" and told me to go home and write some more!  When Campbell McGrath tells you that, you dare not disobey!

Lynne Barrett led us through a breakdown of good fiction-writing practices by using Hansel and Gretel as an example of an enduring and effective story.  This was a very interesting method which clarified many things in my mind even though I'm not writing fiction right now.

I wish I could have attended all the sessions and events but I wasn't able to--the activities began at 7:30 in the morning and lasted until the evening with breaks for meals.  I met many nice people and was very impressed with the level of writing of the participants,

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Irene Adler haunts Sherlock's mind....

My poem, "Very Truly Yours, Irene Norton, née Adler” which won 2nd place in Spark's Contest Two, will be published in Spark, A Creative Anthology Volume III on Halloween!  

“To Sherlock Holmes she is always the woman. I have seldom heard him mention her under any other name. In his eyes she eclipses and predominates the whole of her sex. It was not that he felt any emotion akin to love for Irene Adler. All emotions, and that one particularly, were abhorrent to his cold, precise but admirably balanced mind. He was, I take it, the most perfect reasoning and observing machine that the world has seen.... And yet there was but one woman to him, and that woman was the late Irene Adler, of dubious and questionable memory.”

― Arthur Conan Doyle, The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes
Marissa Ball made this great pastiche of photos from my Zombie Halloween display for the FIU Green Library!

Love Letter Ekphrastic Ghazals for October

Evan Mantyk of the Society of Classical Poets was kind enough to accept my companion ghazals, under the title "On Viewing Dante and Beatrice by Henry Holiday, 1884" for publication on his site.

The poems were inspired by Holiday's beautiful painting, shown below and on the website.

The Society consists of a group of poets dedicated to the revival and proliferation of good, new poetry that follows classical forms. See the website if you are interested in joining.

Read my poems here.