30 poems in 30 days, Boston culture, Extra MoJo!, Fiction, Hidden Charm Press, Mignon's Diary, Poetry, U.M.Ph.! Prose

November 3, 2013: The State of Words Address

There isn’t much to report in the bookmaking world.   It’s no secret that a lot of small-press publishers have taken a beating in this economy.  But, more disturbing, is how crabby and nasty some writers have gotten.  We’re all poor, but some folks are more bitter about it.  No small victory goes unpunished.  So, here’s to writers, editors, publishers, book designers, et al. who are making it work somehow.  Scale back where you must, but keep going!

This is actually the bad news section of my post.  I started Hidden Charm Press in 2011 with hopes of pumping out 2-3 books per year.  So far, Extra MoJo! (Feb. 2013) stands alone.   I’m determined to publish my memoir 2013-2014, but I’ve given up hope of having a poetry chapbook contest this year.  My goal is to keep the fee low yet be able to offer a cash prize as well as publication.  Perhaps next year.

For a variety of reasons, my poetry has ground to a halt.  I chose to focus on my neglected genre, fiction, this year and will be self-publishing my first novella within months via Tell-Tale Chapbooks (TTC).  Of course, sacrifices had to be made – the biggest being the online journal U.M.Ph.! Prose; it will become an anthology via TTC (in collaboration with Stone Soup Poetry host Chad Parenteau) … hopefully next year.  So I’ve produced two decent poems this year.  It’s been a lonely summer without poetry, not something I can explain unless you’re a poet too 🙂 .

Now for the good news.  This month, as I enthusiastically await the publication of my second book of poems What Goods a View of the Charles…? (ALL CAPS PUBLISHING), I’m also trying to prime the pump and get into poetry writing for the winter by writing 14 poems in November.  A lot of people are writing 30.  Hurrah to them, but not my goal!  My point here is simple.  We’re all struggling; we’re all discouraged.  But we who are lucky enough to have words are holding onto them.  We’re doing what we can, no matte rhow small or large, to keep the written word relevant, important.  We need words…and they need to be written…and a lot of people are still comforted by reading them.

 

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30 poems in 30 days, Boston culture, Mignon's Diary, Moby-Dick poems, U.M.Ph.! Prose

May 1, 2013

[Sorry about the format.  Have to stay as is for now.]

April was the cruelest NaPoMo ever here in Massachusetts for some obvious reasons, some personal ones.   But poetry always adds some bright spots to my life.  So I’m just going with two poems, kinda Best of Times/Worst of times instead of an entry.  The first is here; the second is published in a special Boston Marathon 2013 tribute issue of my online journal of city narrativesU.M.Ph.! Prose.  God Bless Us, Everyone!

A Love Song for Moby

I’ve tried so hard to share the ambiance,
revealing why your tail’s transfixed so long.
It’s lulled me, like a babe, into a trance,
and I alone must sing the white whale’s song.
I want to lure you too up from the deep
– so you can write a line or two for me!
And dreaming of your tale (when I need sleep),
I write pelagic tableaux that I see.
I’ve read your book four decades in the past
and never felt a need to log critique.
But now I must synopsize what I grasp
– my memory is growing so oblique.
Land’s sake, I’ll have to finish all alone, for
yellowed pages don’t list your hydraphone.

[April 23: My annual Shakespearean sonnet]