Saturday, June 13, 2020

Feminine Rising contributors read poems on YouTube.

Feminine Rising Anthology, Cynren Press, (and 2019 Foreword INDIES Finalist!) editors Andrea Fekete and Lara Lillibridge are posting contributors' readings of their poems on YouTube and various social media outlets.  Here is my reading of my poem "Reunion."  Each poet's reading is preceded by an introduction which includes biographical information about the poet and of course information about the book.

Sunday, February 16, 2020

The Best Late News--Pushcart Nomination 2020!

I just found out (having been out of touch in social media lately) that the Editors of Fiolet & Wing: An Anthology of Domestic Fabulist Poetry, nominated my poem "A Modern Day Amazon Visits the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston" for a 2020 Pushcart Prize back in November (along with four other poets published in that volume.)  Thank you, Stacey Balkun and Catherine Moore!

This honor came at a good time for me, since I haven't been writing or submitting much lately and I needed a good kick in the pants!

This is my 3rd Pushcart nomination:  2014, 2017 and now 2020!  I hope it's a good portent for the year to come!

Thursday, March 07, 2019

Year in Review: 2018--Year of the Anthology!

2018 turned out to be the year of the anthology for me!

Five new anthologies do/will include my poems:
Other publications/acceptances this past year:

"Meeting on the Turret Stairs" an ekphrastic poem after the eponymous painting by Frederick William Burton, was accepted by V Press LC.

Falling Star Magazine published another of my poems in their summer issue, leading to my making the acquaintance of fellow Falling-Star-published poet Joseph Zaccardi, an excellent poet and former poet laureate of Marin County, CA.

New Reader Magazine published two poems in June.

Sunday, December 30, 2018

Ending the old year on a positive note: Boricua en la Luna anthology!

I'm very excited and honored to announce that Boricua en la Luna: An Anthology of Puerto Rican voices just accepted two of my poems for their upcoming publication!  It's a great way to end this year, which doesn't have too many good things associated with it, in my mind.  Boricua en la Luna's profits will benefit the Hispanic Federation's efforts on behalf of the island's hurricanes Maria and Irma recovery effort.  Many thanks to editor Elena Aponte for her vision and effort on behalf of the island and support for diverse voices in literature!

From their site:
We want diverse voices from Puerto Rico: stories, poems, and essays that will help the world understand the wonderful people who live on the island, a place that has given the world immensely talented artists, actors, writers, poets, musicians, librarians, politicians, humanitarians, scientists, and athletes-- a place that still needs our support and our love.
Boricua En La Luna will be available in Mid-2019 in both electronic and print formats.

Sunday, August 05, 2018

Space Operas galore--Corey, Chambers, Wells and Foner

Novels that take place as humanity expands its presence in the galaxy are perennial favorites.  (See previous post on Catherine Asaro's work as well) I've come across several contrasting and vastly entertaining series in this subgenre lately.

Fans of The Expanse (one of the most well-reviewed series on t.v., which was recently cancelled by Syfy and subsequently saved by Amazon) will be glad to know that it is based on the novels (Orbit Books) by a team of two writers under the pen name James S.A. Corey.  Both the show and the novels are fantastic.  In my case, since I began seeing the show before reading the novels, the two have melded in my mind in a very pleasing gestalt.  Leviathan Wakes is the first of the series.  The crew that comes together in the ship Rocinante are the first that remind me of the Firefly crew in their likable motleyness and unity.  In this first novel, the point of view shifts between the idealistic Holden and Miller, the hard-bitten detective, a contrast that works very well.  My one criticism is that the main female characters, Naomi and Julie Mao, are idealized to a point and not allowed to be totally human.  But that's a common issue in sci-fi, I find.

A series that contrasts well with Corey's rather dark and militaristic vision, is Becky Chambers' The Long Way to a Small Angry Planet, which describes as a "joyous, optimistic space opera."
The debut novel has been followed by two more, one just published, so enjoy!  Her novels have attracted much attention and awards for their quality and different approach.  Her emphasis is on the characters and their emotions.

In between these two series, as far as tone and ambiance, I would place Martha Wells' (read EVERYTHING she's ever written, not just this series, you will not regret it!) Murderbot Diaries novella series, the first of which, All Systems Red, just deservedly won the Nebula and Locus awards.  In this four-part series, we get inside the mind of an AI security unit that goes quietly (and then not so quietly) rogue.  The last novella in the series will be released in October.

On a totally different plane, is the hilarious, quirky Union Station series by E.M Foner (this interview by K.C. Sivils will tell you much of what is different about the series, beginning with the author!) While not technically a space opera, this series does take place in a future populated by aliens and AI superminds that interact in strange and surprising ways with the all-too-human humans!  It's a laugh-out-loud funny series that bring a welcome optimistic flavor to what is often envisioned as the dark and doomed future of humanity.

Friday, April 06, 2018

Feminine Rising: Voices of Power & Invisibility--anthology update

My poem "Reunion" was accepted for publication in this anthology a while back. I just visited their site and I'm happy to find out they found a publisher, Cynren Press! It's available for Pre-order here:
Feminine Rising
We've officially signed a contract with Cynren Press!
Contributors will hear from us as soon as possible about next steps. We are so grateful to you all for sharing your voices with us, for making this labor of love something really worth loving.
Andrea Fekete and Lara Lillibridge, editors

Thursday, April 05, 2018

Last Year's Best Frugal Choices: Work, Home and Travel

My road to frugality has not led me to what most frugal gurus would call a minimalist lifestyle but it has gotten me to where I wanted to be. I still have more stuff than I know what to do with, or that I could use in many lifetimes, so decluttering our modestly sized home is still a priority. This is why I really think twice before I bring anything into my life that doesn't add to its quality significantly.
That said, this past year a few purchases have greatly added to my quality of life:
Three identical pairs of pants from Kohl's (different colors) at about $30 each. They have elastic waists so if my weight goes up or down a few pounds I don't have to worry. They are dark so they don't show stains and they don't need ironing. This is my uniform system for work: each pant goes with almost every shirt I own so getting dressed for work is simplicity itself! I've divided my closet into work clothes, weekend clothes and in-between clothes (read: "retired" work clothes that will serve in a pinch!)
A medium sized oscillating fan ($30--Lasko brand purchased via Amazon) which immensely helps disperse a/c to specific spots where I need it instead of just turning the a/c to a lower temp. It would be nice to have ceiling fans, but this fan is perched on a bookshelf and does basically the same job much more cheaply! It reaches two "hot spots" in the house where I regularly hang out.
An under the seat carryon suitcase with wheels: $60. (London Fog brand, purchased at Tuesday Morning store) This simplified my traveling greatly--it's much smaller and lighter than the usual carryon so I can lift it with ease if necessary. I have fewer things hanging off my body so it's easier to get around the airport. And it serves as a leg rest when I'm in the waiting area and a bathroom door guard as well--when the stall door doesn't lock properly I prop it up against it to keep it closed.
Speaking of frugality gurus, I'm happy to see that Get Rich Slowly is back in the hands of its originator, J.D. Roth. I'm glad to see this trend away from corporatization of the frugality movement. I hated it when The Simple Dollar's Trent Hamm sold his site, for example. It's never the same once they do. You can see the differerence on the sites for yourself. They both have lots of advertisements but The Simple Dollar is obviously a commercial site now.