Wow, this year ended with the Big Bang of Book Fairs: my Miami Book Fair presentation/reading experience was eye-opening and even fun on some levels. But it was a banner year in many other aspects as well: first of all my chapbook, Shining from a Different Firmament came out in March, (very appropriately for Women's History month); I also had a record of 20 acceptances (for me!--I know this number may be laughable to some people but I wield a slow pen!) and 15 publications, not including the 20 poems published in the actual chapbook, 5 interviews or articles featuring my poetry, 2 book giveaways, 1 book auction, 1 review of my chapbook in the Quarterday Review and 1 judging experience!
Along with the publications came precious feedback from readers and fellow poets, who were very generous in their comments and it was very encouraging to realize that I am not delusional but actually making some progress in my poetry.
I was fortunate to begin this year by publishing one of my favorite poems "Nothing in the Dark" and ended with the publication of another: " "Emily Brontë Addresses Her Creation" -- as well as the acceptance of some hard-to-place longer poems in the perfect venue which I hope will go forward.
Next year begins auspiciously, (I hope!), with 1 writing workshop acceptance (with poet Campbell McGrath). They have so many activities planned--readings, receptions, sunset sailings--that I'm wondering when exactly we are supposed to get any writing done! But it all sounds like fun.
What do I want to accomplish next year? I think my main preoccupation is to learn to self-direct my writing so I'm not so dependent on outside stimulus. Since my tutorial with Andrea ended, I think I'm suffering from the equivalent of the post-M.F.A. limbo that many students find themselves in. Our tutorial lasted about the same length of time as an M.F.A. and I think accomplished the same, more or less. Now I have to learn to do it on my own.
Another highlight of the coming year:
Portland-based Poetry Press Week will be debuting in Miami and they have invited me to be a judge, so that will be a new and fascinating experience!