Saturday, November 5, 2011

How many bodies do you have hiding in the storage unit?

Well.


All writers have them. 


Characters with limp, heavy limbs stuffed in unplugged freezers keeping company in dark storage units. 


Well, it's novel writing month. Time to haul them out. Time to get those bitches out now and pull a little CPR. 


Interestingly, this little tidbit in the news fueled my own interest for characters stuck in limbo - or worse, stuck in that dark space, unopened for years. 

Don't let this happen to your characters.


And it's National Novel Writing Month. Translation: Time to get nagged by anyone who so much as touches pen to paper. 




But this is how my days are going instead:



How to: Clock in, Clock out.

Take out brain upon arrival.
Throw out window.
Begin day. 





And I'm starting to experiment on myself. If I drink x amount of coffee in y amount of hours, I will shit myself  z amount of times. It's relieving the tedium for now, but God, it's hell on my body. 


Now enough complaining.


I'm working on stuff too. I am. It's those characters I've stuffed away, a mangle of loose limbs and hair, ready to jump out if I so much as breathe on them. I'm even CPR certified. Go ahead. Write. And if they're dead? Well . . . there's always zombies. 

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Top Ten Worst Science Fiction Covers: Fancy Pants Protesting: Ignoring my blog

Behind my neatly ordered armies of Classic Literature on my bookshelf resides a swamp of torn covers, folded back pages, grease spotted titles - a veritable swamp of, well, Science Fiction and Fantasy. 


Not that my Hardy, Maugham, and D.H. Lawrence (etc, etc.) ever go unread! I love them just as much as the books I stuff in the back - but the covers. 


Dear Sweet Jesus of Nazarene.  


If you are not an ardent fan of Speculative and Science Fiction - get thee to a book aisle.
I can even see your return from said book aisle now, eyes blinking in confusion, nose wrinkled in disgust, saying:

"Who would ever read that shit? Who??"


Well, sir. I do.


But why, oh why do they have such FUCKING AWFUL COVERS???  Dear reader, HAVE YOU SEEN THEM?! These authors are masters of their craft - yet must have surely given the cover page job to a poor drunk cousin they felt bad for, saying "Have at it, Andy. Just don't get your liver disease and jaundice on the final draft before you send it."

Here are the top ten worst ones:
Take a look at anatomically incorrect women bearing massive swords!

But wait. I wanted to include some of mine.



Don't laugh, Muthafuckas. 


     Just about all of Robert Jordan's covers are epic failures. The bodies are never correct - even to an untrained eye. I took the most basic of art courses, and damn. This fucker's shoulder is GROWING OUT OF HIS NECK.  Oh, and he has a size 27 waist with 52 inch shoulders. To better defeat darkness with, I assume.


     There are scads more with worse covers I could post - but the back of my bookshelf is a mess, and I'm not re-organizing the whole damn thing just to show you. So just giggle quietly to yourself and thank your deity or lack of, that you do not have a fetish with a form of literature that INSISTS on embarrassing itself. 




On a related note. Why are you reading this? Shouldn't you be OCCUPYING WALL STREET?


     I, like many people, have mixed feelings. Should there be a protest? Absolutely. But should it be because the middle class is feeling the pinch now? No, you idiots. No.




     Listen. My income is in the lowest 10th percentile. I don't have health insurance. I do hold a full time and a part time job. Have I "occupied"???


     Fuck no. I can't take the time off of work. The day before payday all I had for dinner was a can of chickpeas. I'm sure as hell not occupying nothing but a goddamn grocery store when I get paid. 


     And that, my friends, is the sad truth about America. I support and cherish those struggling, those counting pennies and tightening belts to make it to the protests, those people for who it is not easy to protest - but I'd simply like to kick the middle class brats who are mad because mommy and daddy won't pay for college, or because they have to stop shopping at Hollister and work a shit job.


Interestingly enough, I'm feeling a bit irate at the art scene. I'm talking about those people who "wander" around the country in a wannabe Kerouac style, pretend to support themselves off their art - but really have ol' Mom or Dad wire them money to subsist. The people who know that - ultimately- if they get tired of the hipster-artist existence - a plane ticket home is just a phone call away. 




They dress up and go to the protest - look! We can have fun and protest too!

Circus.


  


















It's actually members of an art collective based in Brooklyn.



This was an photo taken at Occupy Times Square within the last day or so. 

     That's the image that will burn into my brain when I clock in Monday, wishing I could represent my class, and myself.


     And I'm judging harshly. I know. 
But instead of trying to squeeze out time and money to rally and protest - I find myself thinking, "What's the point?"










     These days are crazy and tumultuous, and I find myself wondering at the intense public wave of sorrow of Steve Jobs passing, while Troy Davis is long forgotten after a few weeks. 


     P.S. Yes, I have a Mac. No, I don't really care - other than the general, vague compassion one feels at a stranger dying. He had the best care possible. Steve Jobs backpacked across India tripping on acid in his youth. He had a full life. DON'T WASTE YOUR TIME FEELING SORRY FOR A DEAD STEVE JOBS.  Too many events are spinning themselves out - countries crumbling, keeling over with debt or war. People, like Troy Davis - are already forgotten. 


It's almost as if the world doesn't want to really remember, doesn't really care. As long as there's T.V. dinners and Dancing with the Stars. 










*Lastly*
To those still reading - thank you. My updates are rather sporadic, sometimes just a line or two, due to scheduling conflicts of life in general. Mea Culpa. Those blogs I read and comment on, I truly enjoy (or enjoy riling). 


I'll leave on a positive note. 

"What do you call a one-legged woman?"

"Eileen."


Get it? Do you get it??




 

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Riches for two is poverty for one. #CHAPBOOK RELEASE

Deadly Chaps Press has released my chapbook HERE.

Ladies and Gents, 


Feel free to give it a perusal, daahlings. Perhaps write a review?
"Riches for Two/Poverty for One" would adore your attention. 


You can also take a sweet peek at Deadly Chaps Alumni R.S. Bohn's chap from Series One here


Go on. Pick your teeth with the bones of a verb, or let a few nouns slide down your gullet. 


You won't regret. Take a taste. We'd love a few nibbles. And words don't wiggle nearly so much as flesh. 

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Forget to ink your work in blood?

Recently, I approached one the writing darlings of Burlington, Vermont to review my work. I cheerfully warbled away a friendly e-mail.

Mistake One.

I asked if they would take a look at my work, free to download!

Mistake Two.

And I sent the link.

Bad, bad Jenny Dreadful.

      Lest anyone skew my stance - I'll make it clear. I own no T.V., no camera phone with gadgets, do not twitter, would rather typewrite if monetary circumstances allowed.  I get my news from the radio driving to and from work, and get the weather from co-workers or simply looking outside. It works for me. I'm 26 - so this stance is not very popular among my generation - unless you're growing dreads and bike to work in -30 below to save the environment - neither of which I do.

So. What mistake did I make when approaching this local writing collective I stare through the glass at, like a little Oliver Twist outside a bakery?

 I was quite simply told: I was courted by that monster, that whore of Babylon, lulu. Maker of free downloads and print copies. I was seduced. BY CORPORATE BOOK MAKING! AHHHHHH!!!!

     I should have sent them a chapbook, bound with my hair. Duh. And made the cover in a darkroom at odd hours while subsisting on a trust fund. Never mind my working poor roots (and bills) that demand both a full time and a part time job. I should have cured the pages of my chapbook with my sweat. I should have printed the copies off the printer I don't own.
    Idiot. If possible, I should have used my own hide to carefully mark down those wrought words, mixing blood in with ink!

     Needless to say, I was given a very lengthy e-mail on the evils I hath committed, and very succinctly put in my place. Nor would they use my (eww!) dirty chapbook, a virtual whore coming to infect their computers and very way of life!

Thank *insert deity of choice* for people like R.S. Bohn. Thank fucking god. She agreed to view my chapbook and write a review. And she lived to tell the tale. Right here: Look!!! And she didn't even get scabies.



I leave you with a little piece I nattered off today. She's been haunting my insides, so I let her out to peek around.


The long haired Jewess of Morning

Fills my cup with bitterness, and keeps
loneliness as a kinswoman. At the coffee shop
with my clasped cup I am not the only
supplicant whose throat works for the
hot punishment of roasting beans, but oh,
Sweet Jewess, mine is the only throat who
works to simply breathe you too. 



Saturday, April 9, 2011

Chips and beer, alone but here.

How much is too much?
Do you bloggers shy away from the personal grit of your lives during posts, or spread those words around like hot grease? I've stared at that tightrope, and the height belies the fall. I find it odd - and fitting of today's society, that people I spend 40 or more hours a week in close quarters know less than you, fellow reader.

But I also find it odd to spend two hours in an alternately hot/cold black room in the evening, smelly and full of 60 or more people, quietly sitting-but-not-touching, so close to each other! All staring at a huge panel.

But hey, movie theaters are really popular, no?




On to other things. A little begining I much like, in the way you like the looks of someone on a bus or a train, but then less as they approach you. Maybe this story isn't as tall as I thought when I first spotted it.  Maybe this story was better as a romance-that-never-was. I'd like to finish it someday, but it's already quite three weeks stale. 
 
     “If you read me David Sedaris again, I am going to puke.”
This is a declarative sentence, I think inwardly. Third grade English teacher is beaming rays of eternal sunshine at me.
     His face was like a nude-color flower closing petal by petal until nothing was left but the tight bud of a mouth, “I thought you liked me reading to you?”
     “Yeah, well, I thought I liked having ovarian cancer because all of the free jell-o. But guess who’s charging?”         
     “You are a BITCH. And I hope cancer eats itself out of your PUSSY. “
That was a very declarative sentence, and I cannot argue with it.  I try to push my self farther back into the pillows, like a fluffy grave that will hide me. 


Someday little sentence, someday. You will have legs, and we will learn to tango. 

Saturday, April 2, 2011

And I shall call her "Mrs. Buttered Toast"

     I have strangers going through my room, while I sit mute downstairs. I am making up names for a pet I don't have and eating expensive pineapple, (it's out of season here). 
     In fact, thirty-seven minutes prior found me searching for said pineapple among the monied hipsters and professors at the local, organic City Market. 


    I walked on my toes amid crowds of dreaded heads, expensive leather, the onslaught of patchouli, wave after wave. It was my treat, this golden fruit. Tax return snugly nested in my account, I was ready to yank out its feathers and force it to fly. Get my golden fruit, you filth. 
Fly. 


     Now I eat in silence, cubes of soft gold-yellow disappearing to the rim of my mouth, falling to the soft dark of my middle, leaving faint smells of Hawaii, Florida, Cuba on the pink of my fingers, sliding into the open cracks on my knuckles, making red go snap! Here, bitch!
     I hear measuring tapes cracking. I wish they would go. Harvest some pineapple or something. Be useful. 






I could use a new country, maybe Brazil

where the sun knives my skin, paring it down to the flesh of a peach
where even saudade is an overripe taste, a bearable linger like the
sun through the skin of leaves.


Saturday, March 19, 2011

When you're gone, all I do is eat veggie chips and mini-twix.

I suppose I have to lick the salt from my fingers long enough to post. And curse. 
Damn you, Lily's Feardom. You gobble up my time. I obsess over you. But I can't really stop. http://lilychildsfeardom.blogspot.com/


Ah well. A challenge from two weeks ago kicked my 10 month story writing block out the door. The results are as follows. Criticism is welcome. Compliments aren't. Skip to the bottom for more blog and less story. 


     The words are thick and linty popping out of your mouth, that heavy 
bottom lip. I never tasted a cupid's bow until I had yours. I looked it 
up in the dictionary, I doodled it on the bus. I think we're doing 
something cool and secret and scared. I love girls. I love girls. I think 
I love you. My underwear is set with electric buzzers when I smell the 
shampoo in your hair. You are my best friend, and I want you forever.  

    We rode on the bus to my house. grandma said I could invite you over for 
my birthday party. we hold hands like best friends. But inside, I know it 
means we‟re like, boyfriend-and-girlfriend-but-not. Not in the way the 
world would get.  

     “Let's go in,” those fuzzy words say. 
I don't think anything hard could come from your mouth. only things that are soft, and pink-red. Even when you're angry. it's like hot strawberry pudding, your voice.  
When grandma's angry, it's like glass and bricks going down your throat 
the wrong way. it hurts to even talk back.  
you never ask why my mom is gone and my grandma is raising me. I love you 
for that. I could tell you all my secrets. My mom loved women.  

       “Like, I love my mom?” 

No, like the way I love you. but I just shake my head.  

The door is open, but the light is off. 

I slowly untangle my hand. Grandma would be mad if she saw. But I don‟t 
think you get it. Your mouth puckers in a little and makes me sad. We go 
into my house to find the party, find grandma.  

 I don't trip because I know where everything is in the dark – Juls 
doesn't, so it‟s like a game. Julie only falls once and nearly breaks a 
vase with grandpa's ashes, the one grandma keeps by her chair. 

“What is it?” Hefting the vase. “Real heavy!” 
It's grandpa‟s ashes. But I don't want to scare her. 
 “It's our old dog's ashes.”  
Jul‟s mouth pops into a little "o" of surprise and her hand slips. I 
tumble forward, knocking into the chaise lounge, barely retaining a grip 
on grandpa.  

 We move on from there, and I forget to tell her not to hold my 
hand, that grandma gets mad, and she does mean things when she gets mad. 
A warm, sweaty palm finds mine like it‟s been there it‟s whole life, like 
we was born that way, like maybe we had the same mother. 

 We're in the bedroom, and it's gotten darker. You try to flip a 
switch but grandma always unplugs the lamps when it's light out, and 
plugs them back in when it's dark. We both giggle at the sight of 
grandma's bed. The wood of the four poster frame looks black in the 
dimness, and the sheets look like the moon. I can suddenly imagine us 
spending the night there, and scaring you with my ghost stories while 
your feet rub mine.  

The door slams. 

 We jerk around. I let go of your hand, scared, because she smells 
like grandpa's special cabinet, where he keeps all he grown-up drinks. 
You don't laugh or introduce yourself to grandma. I think she saw our 
hands in the dark, and now they burn so much I think she can see the fire 
and shame from them. I clutch my chest and wish it was yours.  

Grandma moves closer, smiles.  

 I hear a loud fleshy crack and grandma's hand withdrawals. Only 
when you are on your knees do I get that she slapped you. when I bend 
down, fast as a snake, to your soft arm, I hear the air hiss, and 
fireworks go off in my right eye. My face is throbbing and pulsing. I 
feel something drip on my neck. I stumble away, and it‟s the first time 
you look up. your mouth is a big 'O' like your eyes, soft round circles.  

 You, she smiles, stepping up to Juls. Little whore. Both of you. 
Satan's little whores. Grandma takes the brush of the dresser, and 
smartly raps on your spine, driving a short scream from your soft, ready 
mouth. She closes the door. Now I understand that mom never left. She 
might be closer than I thought. While you sob on the floor, she grabs my 
hand, no matter how I writhe, my fingers are spread. No, grandma, no, I 
promise never again. The silver brush smashes my middle finger and leaves 
the one I point with numb. Gasping through the little demons of pain 
licking across my hand, I sob, Never again, please. I‟ll let her go.  

      Juls has gotten up. I see her wide-eyed, but glazed. Like when 
grandpa hit a doe, and got out to see if it died. We watched her legs 
twitch for twenty minutes before we could get back in the car.  
      Juls runs. I scream while grandma smashes my thumb, over and over. 
I have never felt this fire, this pain, it is breaking me. I can't move 
my hand, but I can feel everything. i start to see white dots. Juls walks 
in. But she is getting eaten by the darkness in my good eye, and it‟s 
covering up everything and getting smaller. My hand is just a dull, 
throbbing mass. I see a flash of silver behind the brush coming down 
again, closer to grandma.  She has a steel halo around her for just a 
second, before I notice a thin arm attached. Juls. God. Juls. 

  I hear a deep, dull thud sing out. Grandma's eyes roll back. Her 
shoulder hits my chest and we fall. I scream as more crunching goes on 
towards the direction of my hand, which won't move. My world swims and 
tosses, a deep black sea, before Juls slaps my face. then slaps my hand. 
I howl.  

 Get off the floor, she says. Get up. She's going to wake up. 
I roll to the side, using one hand. I see blood coming out of grandma‟s 
ear. Juls. I can't get up. My breathing hitches in my throat, and starts 
coming out in little hiccups.  

 She slaps me again. Please. I love you. Please. We need to get 
help.  
 I stagger to her poor ruined mouth that saw the brush before my 
hand did, I stare at her split lip, red dripping down her pretty dress. 
Her broken teeth. I stare and don‟t move.  

 Please, you beg. C'mon.  
I grab the pan with my good hand. We‟ll make sure she doesn‟t wake up, 
Juls. So she doesn‟t follow us. Then I bring that steel halo down as hard 
as I can.  



So, I had submitted to the usual suspects; I do believe my submishmash reject list is on its fourth page. That's just from the last three or four months.  I've been chided for an unhealthy obsession for getting into the label lit mags. Pank, Smokelong, Foundling, Mud Luscious. 

Onward. I have a humor piece I've been working on. 


              How To Revive A Dying Relationship
1. Start withholding small things, like food or comfort.  Only give them back by sexual favors.  I often have conversations like this:

“I want a sandwich, but I’m kinda on a budget till next payday”

*pause

“I’ll let you put it in my mouth for 10 bucks, then I can buy a sandwich”

*pause

“I’ll even move my  tongue a little bit”

Proceed to cross eyes and drool slightly on left shoulder. Collapse on floor, spasm legs.

“Sorry. I forgot to take my seizure meds. So I might clamp down a little hard. But hey, no pain no gain, right?”



2. Make bets on who can grow the longest pubic hair.  You can even spice things up by making it threatening. Often times, I will ask something simple, like “Please turn off the lights” or “Put your shoes away.” Since I am not maternally inclined, I refuse to pick up after any partner – especially male.

 I will often retaliate by growing a vaginal beard in my pants. Especially if I’ve had to ask twice for  my special someone to clean their hair out of the sink. Guess they’ll have to unclog the drain for me now! Bet you wish you thought of that.


3. Switch ethnicities and/or religious preference without  warning.
Getting caught sneaking out of the house or refuse to eat what’s for Friday? Well, they should have known it was Shabbat.  You’ve only been doing it for the past year.
Hold a picture close to your face. How could they no know of your great aunt’s struggle to come to America? Do they know nothing of you?

Tools: Google image “immigrant” and a color printer.  Place cut-out in purse and/or wallet.


Well, that's quite enough. I'm off to other blogs. Then I really should shower at some point. Put on clothes that don't start with a 'p' and end with 'jamas'

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Happy Birthday. You're only 7 years behind.


     A blog. Finally. 
Even the name sounds gross - a hybrid between German and something coughed up during a bad cold. 
oh, oh,  you might say while grabbing a tissue,  I have the blogs again, oy


     On to other things. While trolling popular e-lit sites, a notice a high content of stream-lined, transcendent, stream of consciousness poetry/prose. Phenomenal. Really? One wonders if these pieces are accepted because the cover letter might have had the words M.F.A or Ph.D. 

Is it okay to have a fake doctorate? An MFA from the School of Hard Knocks? I really wonder if someone established securely in the literary world would get the same acceptances as say, Sally Smith from South Dakota if their material were the same. Someone famous do this. 

     Now I lay me down to the alter of stream of consciousness bullshit phenomenon: 


college.debt

for years I ate paper off the floor
in order to impress the boys
I would sweep up the dirt with words
and watch the teachers walk by
holding hands with their favorites
run into a corner and stuff my belly
tight with false pregnancy hoping
that I would give birth to bright faces
caught in surprise at my greatness
oh, oh, these faces would say, you are
all I’ve been waiting for, let us walk the
halls.