Thursday, November 21, 2013

I Haven't Been Making Anything With My Hands, or (I Think What I Mean)

I want to create something meaningful.

But I think what I mean when I say that I want to create something meaningful is really I want to mean something. 

How do you make your life mean something? I guess for me, it means I create things.

So, I want to create something meaningful.

But I think what I mean...

Sunday, November 10, 2013


I don't know about you, but I think that dreams mean something. And I don't just mean the dreams where I'm pregnant or the dreams where I give birth to a pound of cheddar cheese, though I'm sure these dreams are meaningful in some way too. My guess is that I have probably eaten too much cheese before bedtime.

But I mean the dreams where someone comes back to you. The ones where a dead friend or father finds his way back to a space where you used to live, and you get one more chance to eat lunch together.

I could never believe that dreams are your brain's way of "defragmenting." I don't believe, after waking up and blinking away the most unbelievable pink and purple sky, that dreaming is a way for us to jettison the things we don't need to make room for anymore.

Monday, October 21, 2013

Setting Goals That Don't Involve Bubble Shooter Games on Facebook

I've been thinking a lot lately about goal setting. What I like to do is make a to-do list each day. That way, I can put things on it that are super easy to do, like eat lunch (check), drink coffee (check), play Bubble Safari (check).

And I've spent a lot of time being disappointed about how much of my time I waste (playing Bubble Safari). Truth time: I've beaten all of the available levels of Bubble Safari. And that makes me really sad. I need advice, guys. Or a new system, or some self discipline.

I go through phases of being very driven and motivated to accomplish things that are important to me. I go for a few weeks writing a poem each day, or I read ten books in two weeks. Then I give up or burn out.

I've been contemplating implementing a new goal setting system, in which I give myself daily goals, weekly goals, and monthly goals. I think I'd try to keep "yearly goals" to a minimum, as it might feel too much like a new year's resolution kind of gig. But I know what my lofty goals are. I want a book. I want to be published in The New Yorker. I want to teach creative writing. That's it. That's what my goals will amount to, if I do it right.

How do you set goals for yourself? Have you found success? What didn't work? I'm in a bind here. I seriously need to stop wasting so much of my time and actually get to work doing the things that matter to me. Help a sister out. What's your system?

Blog Retool

So, I've been thinking for awhile about retooling my blog. I don't blog anymore, and it's because I'm busy and because the scope of my blog is so limited. I don't want to stay the Angry Grammarian. First of all, I'm rarely angry, except when I order a veggie sub at Subway and they don't put on lots of vegetables. Seriously!? That's ALL I want on it! Put more!

Secondly, I guess I started this blog to write about stuff that's going on in my life as a writer. I still want to write about those things, but there are so many other aspects of my life I feel like I want to talk about. I used to write in an online diary all the time when I was in junior high and high school. Actually, I still have a locked Diaryland account, and sometimes I go in and post secrets or thoughts I'm too embarrassed to share anywhere else. I'll never tell.

What I'm trying to say is, I'm bringing my blog back. But I want to write about poems and salads and long Octobers and movies and maybe I had a really satisfying sandwich for lunch. I want to write about that. I want to write because I want to, and not just because I'm having a poem published in an important magazine, or somebody reviewed my chapbook and didn't like it.

Blog retool, ENGAGE.

In some other actual-writer related news, I recently did a poetry reading with three other fantastic poets: Molly Sutton Kiefer, Katie Rauk, and Meryl DePasquale. Doing poetry readings is like, my first love. I don't think there's anything I enjoy doing more than attending readings and participating in readings. Especially when I'm doing a poetry reading, it feels like I'm standing inside a pot of gold coins. Which is to say, I just love it, and I want to do more of it.

If you have never been to Subtext books in Saint Paul, go check it out, as it's the only place in the world that my chapbook is still available for sale. Unless they're sold out, in which case yes, I am sending you on a wild goose chase. But not a real wild goose chase. That would scare the dickens out of anyone.