The end of the semester, as those of you know who are in school or teach at the college level, is upon us, and the insanity, though past the start, is still in full swing. Hence the lack of updates.
I turned 28 today.
I had a pretty amazing year.
My first book got accepted for publication by Dream Horse Press.
I got married to an amazing woman, and though I'm biased, our wedding was also amazing.
I got into four out of eight schools for my PhD before finally choosing Binghamton University and moving to Vestal, New York with Jess.
And I "finished" a second manuscript, which is now officially at a total of nine contests and open reading periods.
I'm not quite sure how all of that happened, but it did, and I'm extremely thankful.
That said, the last the thing I want to do is slow down.
My new goal is to have the second manuscript accepted for publication by the time I turn 30 in exactly two years. It's lofty, I know, but I really feel that it's in a much better position than Ghost Lights was at that point, and even if it's deemed not so, I'm going to keep sending it out.
Though I didn't get a ton of poems written during this semester, which I expected, I'm hoping to come back fiercely next semester.
I keep thinking about the page length for single collections of poetry. Ghost Lights, in a .doc file, is exactly 51 pages of actual poetry. At one point, I probably had it up to 60, but I kept cutting, and that's one thing I made a point to do, especially with published poems.
That's how the new manuscript is, too. I think it's exactly 50 pages of poetry. I like it like this.
I probably always will.
Longer collections seem to bum me out. I always keep finding poems in collections that I would've cut. Maybe I'm too hard on those books and my own manuscripts? Not sure.
Spent last weekend in Goshen, New York, at my Aunt Janet's for Thanksgiving. Saw a lot of relatives, drank well and ate well. Can't ask for anything more.
The weekend before Jess and I went to Baltimore. She had a suturing class she decided to take part in for her job, and since I literally hadn't been anywhere since Ithaca in three months, it was good to get out of Vestal for a bit. Had a blast. Met new people. One of the best weekends I've ever had.
Speaking of getting away, here's an interesting blog post by Susan Rich: Artist Residencies - What You Should Know.
Residencies and colonies have always been funny things to me. I've never applied to one because I've never had the desire or need to go to one, but this seems like a good start for those who are interested.
Hopefully Ghost Lights will be out sometime around May 2010. Once I get the galleys, which should be soon, I'm going to spend day and night looking, changing, questioning, finalizing.
I already have some folks who said they're interesting in reviewing it, and I'm in the process of setting up some readings for next year. There's still a lot I need to learn about all this promotion stuff. Thankfully I have a lot of writers I can talk to.
There's probably more I want to write, but I can't remember anything else. Except that The Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call - New Orleans was a great movie. Hilarious, dark, fun, and insane.
Kind of pissed The Road didn't get a wide release. Hopefully in a few weeks though. The Lovely Bones better be wide, because I'm psyched to see that too, but I'm not holding my breath.
Oh, and it looks like the new issue of Handsome is out and shipping in December.
Look at that cover. Wow.
There's a poem in there issue from Ghost Lights, and it looks like I'm in good company, which is no surprise to me.