Saturday, April 26, 2008

Random Thoughts from the Poetess

A collection of random thoughts for your perusal:

I painted my toes for the first time this season and am breaking in new sandals, which has resulted in blisters on the tops of my feet. This is likely caused by the fact that my feet are spoiled by Danskos. *sigh* At least my ruby-tipped toes are cute. The color, by OPI nail lacquers, is "I'm Not Really A Waitress." Heh.

On the non-creative writing front, I'm trying to bang out a chapter titled "The Haves and the Have-Nots: Class, Race, Gender, Access to Computers and Academic Success" for a forthcoming book edited by Vib Bowman and Robert Lackie of the library and education world. I am excited about this for a number of reasons - first, um, it's a book chapter. A book with an ISBN. W00T! Looks good for tenure, and the book, which the editors have titled The Myths, Realities, and Practicalities of Working with Gen M: A Handbook for Educators and Librarians, is actually something I'm interested in - education and media literacy issues for Gen M kids. It's integrally related to my day job as a reference and instruction librarian. Plus, the publishing credit is something I can use in my bid for tenure, whereas my creative writing, not so much.

I am also kicking around a few ideas for books. Not that I have the time to write a scholarly-type book in my current state of OMGWTFBBQDEADLINES!!1!!!1!!eleven!!, but it is something I want to do eventually, so I'm considering what sort of topics would capture my interest for long enough to write an entire book. So far, I've got:

The "G" Spot: How Academic Librarians Affect Graduation Rates and Student Retention

Hey, I'd read that. It also might not be a bad start for a dissertation topic, given that I'm eyeballing starting the EdD program once I complete my MFA (November 2009) and MA (expected 2010). Best to have an interesting and useful academic library related topic.

I came into the office today to work on this book chapter, and haven't been able to rein in my brain to buckle down and do it. I have a sketch of the abstract, which is due to the editors Wednesday, so I do believe I'll be back in tomorrow to tackle it.

What is on my brain is this Lilith collection. (My brain has been usefully parsed into two parts: dayjob librarian work brain, and night-time and weekend creative writing brain. Apparently weekend brain is jealous of its space and wants little to do with librarian writing.) While reading my articles to form this book chapter, I was struck by the sudden desire to write in negative space and see if it turned into something compelling. I like it, but am sending it over to my trusty experimental fiction dude Drew, who is quite the poet himself and has some serious sense when it comes to revision suggestions. He's getting MFA-ed in May, so if you're hiring, you should contact him. Anyway, back to topic, Lilith on the brain, trying to keep it interesting, working in negative space from the starting thought of "I was never tempted by an apple." (That's not how it appears in the poem, but that's where the idea-seed came from - is it possible to write about not-something, and keep readers fascinated by all of the possibilities it leaves open? I think so, if it's done well, but it's a hell of a challenge.)

Also: more from me on the multiple-personality split of creative vs. not-creative writing. I hate to call it "uncreative" (and even "not-creative" is sort of insulting), and I don't want to call it "professional" writing, since a paid poet is a professional. I'll let this one marinate a bit and post on it soon.

Random: does it freak anyone else out that Firefox's spell-check suggestion for my mis-typed version of "something" is "thigbone's"? I mean, I wasn't really that far off, and it didn't look anything like "thighbone's"...

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