My First Book’s Coming Out. Cue Panic?

My first book releases March 31st. This isn’t the post I thought I’d write about such an occasion, but then– this isn’t the book I thought I’d write, either.  Here’s a confession. Publishing this book is easily one of the most terrifying things I’ve ever done. Writing it involved excavating and articulating stories, fears, and beliefs…

What Writers Can Glean from “The Wolf of Wall Street”

In my latest for Ploughshares Literary Magazine, I summarize the Crazy response to The Wolf of Wall Street, and tackle the Good that might come from ethically-precarious art. An excerpt: Criticisms of The Wolf of Wall Street both devalue viewers—by assuming they can handle only moralistic tales—and esteem them, by providing immediate evidence of their astonishing critical thinking skills. The film’s critics…

Poetry read over Pop Music: YES.

Confession: I’m utterly delighted by these poems read over pop music: [bandcamp width=100% height=120 album=2740518272 size=medium bgcol=ffffff linkcol=0687f5] Click the forward arrow above for more greatness: track 1 frank o’hara & drake track 2 alice notley & justin timberlake track 3 dana ward & katy perry track 4 dylan thomas & miley cyrus track 5 william carlos…

4 Reasons to Write the Hell out of (What’s Left of) 2013

Ok so it’s almost Thanksgiving. If shopping, family drama, travels, and/or assorted year-end hells are killing your writerly motivation, here are four reasons you’ll want to go write anyway. Like, right now. It’s my latest for Ploughshares Literary Magazine: Consider yourself kicked in the ass.  (you’re welcome)   PS. If nothing else, you can always employ your…

And then there’s the time you go off Cymbalta.

Not because you no longer need it, but because it may be doing harm. Not that you know; it’s an experiment. A new doctor playing fast and loose with neurotransmitters. Famously terrifying to quit, Cymbalta loves and leaves with jerks and starts, fuzzy rods between your eyes, hilarious nausea. Blurred and frozen, then unfrozen. Cymbalta…

(listening to Russian poets)

“For to live means to sing, to love, to rage, and to tear things to shreds, while…faces look on and pupils burn.” –Nicolay Aseev (Choosing to ignore for a moment that Aseev wrote this in a bullfighting context.) (Because advice is advice amirite)

“It is just as well to be rash and foolish”

If you need a weekend writing push, check out Zora Neale Hurston‘s reminder to be rash. Get what’s in you out. Stop asking why and making too many demands, on yourself or others. If you later regret writing this thing, at least you made something worth regretting. Stop waiting. Say it. “I regret all of my books. It…