Monday, June 21, 2004

It's been awhile since I've posted, so I thought I'd better at least check in before the
AHBA or the like has to file a formal written complaint.

Things here have been good. Not an ecstatic, mind-blowing good--and hey, those kind of good's inevitably only lead to drama anyways--but more of a mellow, easygoing kind of good. My days have fallen into a comfortable groove of working out and running errands in the morning, followed by a shower and then a break for lunch. After which I usually feel a bit soporific, and start thinking wistfully about taking a nap, but instead brew up a cup (just one!) of strong, fragrant African-blend coffee and dig into writing for the remainder of the afternoon. I write until dinner, interspersing administrative or household tasks during the lulls, and then after a leisurely dinner in front of the T.V. I sit back down at the laptop again and take another stab at writing--once again checking off domestic or administrative chores from my checklist when I hit a creative bump or lull. I do this until around midnight, after which I kick back and watch a show, or part of a movie. Then I go to bed and read for an hour or so.

Sometimes I go to lunch or dinner with friends, or drive to Sioux City or Sioux Falls to go shopping. But mostly I do the above. Mundane, I know. But productive and comfortable . . . and I just want to enjoy it while it lasts.

I've had a lot of large, time-consuming publicity projects to work on for Year of the Snake--sending out hundreds of promotional postcards and e-mails, etc., but I think that I've now done all that I can do, publicity-wise . . . at least for the time being.

The writing's been going well. I'd been letting the poems for my new book sit for a few months to ripen on the vine, and then came back to them in May to do some extensive revising. I was really worried that they totally sucked ass. But although they needed a lot of fine-tuning, I was amazed and pleased to find that they didn't suck nearly as bad as I thought they did. I did about 44 pages of intense revisions, and then last week was able to do a massive mailing of new work out to various literary journals. I always feel so much better when my stuff is out . . . I love the feeling of slight anticipation and hope that something might get taken . . . that irrational, rejuvenating urge to obsessively stalk my mailman for a possible acceptance letter.

Lately, I've been working on the fiction again . . . a novella-length piece for the music school stories. Ultimately, these stories seem to have a lot to do with the difficulties of being a commited artist of one type or another. How art can be fickle and unfaithful, but at the same time heady, glamorous, and seductive . . . as well as necessary, and inevitable. How it's difficult for an artist to engage appropriately with the world at large, sometimes, or to function well in their personal relationships, when they've already committed so much of themself to their art . . . the comedy and pathos in the frantic juggling that goes on.

On a lighter note, I've compiled a personal dating credo for myself. Sort of a Dating Do's and Don'ts for Dykes. (Has a catchy, alliterative ring to it, doesn' it? Sort of like Things to Do in Denver When You're Dead. But not. Plus, I suppose this is a rather subjective, personalized list, so it's really more like Dating Do's and Dont's for Dyke singular.)


1. Never, ever, under any circumstances whatseover, date a woman who wears Drakkar Noir.

2. Any woman who has ever uttered the words "Baby Dyke Meat Flesh" aloud, and in public, and then smacked her lips and grunted is to be avoided at all costs.

3. For any number of reasons, it is usually best to refrain from dating married women.

4. Yes, that gleaming brand new Toaster Oven might indeed seem to possess Holy Grail-esque qualities, and of course one is always eager to promote that Sinister Gay Agenda and all, but how much does one really need a Toaster Oven, anyways, and should one have to, say, return said Toaster Oven, isn't that mortifyingly worse than having no Toaster Ovens in one's house at all? You know . . . I'm just saying.

5. Any woman who has employed "exotic," "mysterious," or "sensual" as racially-linked adjectives to describe Asian women is an orientalizing Rice Paddy Queen suffering from a misplaced geisha fantasy, who may or may not own a collection of fake "Samurai" swords purchased from eBay. Do not even THINK about going there.

6. [Please feel free to fill in the blank on your own in the comments.]
Posted by Artichoke Heart | 11:35 PM |
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Books by Artichoke Heart
Beyond Heart Mountain
Year of the Snake

Poems by Artichoke Heart
Songs for a Rainy Season
Toothpick Warriors
Snake Wife
Happy Hour
Girl With A Bowl On Her Head

Pillow Book Courtiers Of The
East Wing
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Pillow Book Courtiers Of The
West Wing
Blogroll Me!

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