I am terrible at keeping records, but this seems to be the thing to do, letting all three or four of you know how my year went. So here is the unofficial tally of how 2011 went down for me in the realm of writing and publishing.
Other than spending quite a bit of the year mired in a writer's block, I would have to say 2011 was quite good to me and for me. You hear a lot of negativity from me n this front, but I still managed to end this year in the plus column.
a) As far as I can reckon, I had about 30 rejections. That means I had to send my work out to at least 30 places, which for me is a Herculean feat.
b) I had 4 poems accepted to a single journal. Not only was this a record for me, the poems mark a starting point for my latest manuscript project . Another success.
c) I had an essay accepted and published, as well as a few photographs. Having non-poetry work accepted is always something to make me happy.
d) I had a chapbook of poems accepted for publication---Friday in the Republic of Me will be my entry into the socio-political realm of poetry, and I expect you all to fall in line and buy a copy.
e) I have written at least 10 poems for my new book in the past two months---probably more, but 10 is a safe estimate.
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Today I have been writing a letter to my friend and mentor, Dave Lee, thanking him for some really great notes on a few poems I sent him from my latest manuscript. I also got to drone on about other writing stories he doesn't read here (because he doesn't do the Internet), and that has been good because letter writing is something we all should do more of these days.
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Some good news: Kelly Russell Agodon's e-anthology, Fire On Her Tongue, is the number one seller over at Amazon's Hot 100 Poetry titles. She co-edited the anthology with Annette Spaulding-Convey, and I know a lot of the names mentioned. I don't have an e-reader, so I will be looking into the possibility of getting a pdf and buying it with Paypal, but you all should hop on the bandwagon and buy a copy. Kelly has always done a wonderful job for the cause of poetry, and I am certain this anthology is no exception.
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My sister gave me a book, which is no real surprise, but what is of great interest is which book she gave me. She gave me The Utah Photographs of G.E. Anderson. He was a photographer based in Springville, Utah from the late 19th century through the first quarter of the 20the century. The book, written and compiled by Rell G. Francis, highlights some of the best photographs taken during this era of U.S. history and provides a lot of stories related to the photographs, which is far more than most books of this kind. From it I can expect to have a much broader and deeper understanding of Springville history, from which all my new poems are coming. Thank you, Corey.
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In a few days, Tuesday to be specific, I will be going back to school to finish up the first semester. I expect to have a lot of fun with my English classes finishing up Hamlet and discussing the French Revolution with my sophomores.
Here we go, new year, here we go.