Archive for Acceptances

With December Right Around the Corner….

In the last few days, we have survived Winter Storm Boreas, Thanksgiving, and Black Friday — a trio of events that have made the last week a bit more chaotic than normal (Although, I admit, while I have many family members who love Black Friday sales, I sleep in…actually saving a lot of money!). I have the rest of this weekend to catch up a bit with grading papers and reading a pile of chapbooks that are sitting on my nightstand.

And speaking of chapbooks, writer William Kelley Woolfitt has posted an interview where I talk, no gush, a bit about chapbooks.  Yes, I talk about Stealing Dust and Wearing Heels in the Rust Belt, but I also spend a great deal of time discussing other poets’ chapbooks.  The website has other great interviews in its archives including posts by Justin Hamm and Michael Meyerhofer.  Take a look!

In other good news, the latest issue of Flycatcher is live!  It’s a beautiful issue featuring poems by Rupert Fike, Thomas Rain Crowe, Valerie Neiman, and Mike James.  And yes, two of my poems are also featured.  Happy Reading!

Rounding up Rattlesnakes

November is pushing its way through my semester, and as my sparse blog posts indicate, I have been a bit behind in grading papers, creating lesson plans, and working on my own writing.  However, I did want to provide a quick link to the newest issue of Stirring:A Literary Collection where my poem, “To the Youngest Girl at the Rattlesnake Roundup” has been published.   Rattlesnakes, with the strange lore that sometimes haunts their sections of the rural world, make up an interesting part of  my Pennsylvania landscape.  Rattlesnake Roundups are very controversial and many groups are fighting to disband them.   However, in my world, believe it or not, Rattlesnake Roundups were more family affairs. like the one held in Noxen, Pennsylvania.

Work at World Literature Today

I’m thrilled that my poem, “Redemption at Ray’s Corner Grocery Store” is part of the new online edition of World Literature Today!  I am in great company for my work joins poems by Dorianne Laux, Joseph Millar, Jim Daniels and Sandee Gertz Umbach.  See the special online section labeled 16 American Working-class Poets for some great work.  Both the print edition and the online edition have been edited by poet and scholar Jeanetta Calhoun Mish who has also written a great article titled “Working at Getting the Word Out in America: Small Presses, Journals, and Websites Publishing Working-class Writing.”  Stop by and read through the rest of the contents.

October, So Far

October has started out on a high note — On Friday, October 4, I presented a brief poetry workshop to area high school teachers.  When I say brief, I mean brief – the workshop was only about an hour and a half long.  During the workshop, I talked about different forms of poetry including the pantoum, the ghazal, the sestina, and the villanelle.  (I mentioned the sonnet — but since most people know of the sonnet, I didn’t want to dwell on Bill Shakespeare’s favorite form!).

Then, I explained why I teach form in both my Writing About Literature and Creative Writing classes. I know that while many writers find writing within a specific form a bit stifling — students (such as many business, computer and engineering majors) are often relieved to find rules in place for poetry.  They are happy that they don’t have  to analyze all this “free verse jazz” as one of my students once called the open forms that many of us use in writing.

This workshop also reminded me of some favorite contemporary poets who experiment with form including Aimee Nezhukumatathil, Shaindel Beers and Sandra Beasley. I really need to revisit their work more often.

In other poetry news, I received two acceptances in the inbox this week, one for a poem and one for a poetry book review.  Since both are online publications, I will post links when I know more.  It’s just a bit nice to have a break in the rejection spell.

In general, we are experiencing gorgeous Autumn weather — the kind that makes me happy that I’m living in western Pennsylvania.  Thus, I am declaring a school free weekend.  I will return to reading student papers on Monday.

Written on Water

written on water

A few years ago, poet Helen Ruggieri posted a call for submissions for poetry that explored the landscape of and around the Allegheny River. I submitted a few poems and they were accepted.  Then, a series of events occurred that stalled the publication of the anthology. For a long time, it didn’t seem like this project was going to make it to the page.

But today, I’m happy to report that Helen’s persistence has paid off!  My poems join work by Julia Kasdorf, Phil Terman, and Maggie Anderson (among many others) in Written on Water: Writings about the Allegheny River, and while I have yet to see a hard copy, everything I have read through electronic versions looks wonderful.  And the cover is beautiful!

Written on Water: Writings about the Allegheny River is now available for preorder.   Take a look at the homepage of Mayapple Press for more details.  As for me, I can’t wait for my copy!

So This is June

I haven’t been home much in the last few days.  Between spending long days in my office and traveling to Pittsburgh for some baseball game fun, I haven’t had a lot of time to get some of my personal projects completed.  Deadlines are top priority this week.  I have conference papers to finish, poems to revise, submissions to send, and at least one book review to write.  As always, too much work, too little time.

Good news of the week:  I got an acceptance from Poetry East, one of my favorite literary journals!  “Yellowjackets” will appear in the Fall 2013 issue.  I have loved Poetry East forever, so I am especially excited about this publication.

In Like a Lion….

Okay, I can’t honestly say that March blew in like a lion — more like an irritable lion cub.  We haven’t had a lot of winter weather, but the sky has been completely gray for five days straight with no sun whatsoever.  I’m so pale, that I swear I could audition for a part in a teenage vampire movie.  Except that I don’t look like a teenager.  I really, really need some sun.

I spent this past weekend glued to my desk, trying to get caught up with my work for school. It wasn’t a fun weekend, but now I feel like I can face March and the weeks before spring break.

I won’t be at AWP this year, although I’m certainly envious of those of you who will be…safe travels to all and make sure you have a great time!  A lot of new books are coming out in time for the big event, and I have already ordered my copies – many should be on my doorstep soon.

I am, however, going to this June’s Working Class Studies Conference that will be held in Madison, Wisconsin.  One proposal has been accepted, and another is pending. I have attended two of these conferences before, and I’m really looking forward to this year’s program.

Onward, March! (No pun intended)

Winter Thaw

Warm temperatures and rain are melting the ice and snow away.  Although I’m sure we will be back to winter weather soon, I’m enjoying the thaw, watching the dirty mounds of snow melt, leaving behind road salt and patches of mushy, brown earth.

Since December 1, I’ve had a streak of publications, including works in Caesura, Spillway, Escape Into Life, Strange Horizons, The Country Dog Review, and most recently, Cold Mountain Review.  I will have to be satisfied with these for a while, because I haven’t been sending out a lot of work, and more importantly I have not written a new poem in 2013.  I have, however, been reading a lot!  And I’m really looking forward to the new poetry books and short story collections that will be out in the new few months.

I’ve also been working on a batch of short stories.  I have discovered that my writing process for attacking the short story is actually much like the way I work with poems.  I write a draft, go back, edit paragraphs and sometimes pages, rearrange, and then take a break, letting the work breathe for a few days before I read through the draft again.  Right now, I have four short stories in progress.  I would love to have at least one “finished” enough to send out in the next month or so.

Still, I’m not forgetting poetry!  Based on Diane’s recommendation, I recently purchased Wingbeats: Exercises & Practices in Poetry edited by Scott Wiggerman and David Meischen (It’s less than $10 on Kindle!).  I have already started reading some of the prompts and tips, and am sure they will help kickstart some new work soon!

Strange Horizons

My first speculative poem has been published!  In this week’s edition of Strange Horizons, you can read “Watching for Aliens Over the Allegheny” which combines my interest in ufology with my love of the Alleghenies (where I live) in Pennsylvania.

Country Dog Weekend

The newest issue of The Country Dog Review is now live!  I’m thrilled that two of my poems have been published along with great work by Justin Hamm, Leah Mooney, Molly Spencer and Tasha Cotter.  Check out all the work here.

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