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Archive for June, 2010

What Do I Know?

“How do you know that?!” My Aunt M. from Florida asks me. We’d been looking at old photos when I mentioned that my Great-Grandfather had enjoyed photography as a hobby. I’d grown up visiting him. I am a sponge with information. How do I know anything?

I was both amused and perplexed when she told my Grandmother that she wanted to know about a past relative who committed suicide in a ravine. “Why would she do such a thing?”

“Why does anyone?” I asked in reply. I don’t know that much about my Aunt’s life in Florida. I cannot believe she was born free of depression, but maybe she was lucky. Maybe the sun and surf and her wonderful husband and job and children kept the affliction away from her and she really cannot understand how sad and hopeless a person can feel. I don’t think I’d be the same person I am now had I not known the blackness.

I have no idea why it occurs. I was spiraling back into the abyss just a few days ago. I’m grateful that I was able to recognize the pattern of thought atop thought that feeds the next into the horrible despair that is so bloody awful. I was able to close my eyes and say, ‘new thought.’

It’s so stupid, too. I just had acceptances for my writing. I was going to visit relatives. I had plans for grilling out with friends. In any normal person’s eyes, I never should have tripped into that hole. But I did…

I have no idea what I know that my Aunts don’t, or why some things are glossed over. I know that if I want to confirm something about the distant past, I have to forcefully pull the truth from my Grandmother’s tongue by asking the most direct questions possible because, according to her, we never talk about those things.

So, I don’t know… How do I know?

Better yet, what do I know?

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An Incredible Few Weeks…

What an incredible few weeks it has been! The fourth was glorious with the GwI page going live (Again, thank-you Dawn Corrigan!) In rapid succession, I pitched a ‘guest blog spot’ idea to Lifebytes. Mariann and Sharon liked the idea so I was busy cramming thoughts about the role of love letters in the 21st century in under 500 words. On the 11th, my issue of Writers’ Journal arrived and of the three poems I entered in the December poetry contest, every one of them had received a Special Mention.

Then, Tricia Crisafulli of Faith, Hope & Fiction was kind enough to get back to me a week after I sent her “The Planting Season.” That evening, I had my writer’s group and was blessed to have their fresh eyes for tweaking. I sent my changes to her on Friday. Monday I received the final draft and read it. Some excellent changes were made by Tricia that gave the story more emotional impact — well, you can see for yourself. It will be appearing in the July/August Issue and I’ll put a link up when it goes live.

I was just about to go on Facebook and update my status when I heard the mail carrier pulling away. I had an odd, giddy feeling as I walked down the driveway. I thought it was odd, as I couldn’t recall having anything else sent out I would hear about through the mail. Opening the mailbox, I found a couple of Publisher’s Clearing House envelopes along with an envelope from Thema. I’d forgotten about my submission to Thema…

The envelope felt like the usual story sent back, rejected with a small snip of paper saying ‘No.’ I decided to open it on the way back to the house.

There was a check inside.

There was a letter of acceptance.

There was a release form to fill out and a flier explaining how to send your story on a disc if you didn’t have email.

OMG!

So, since I had received the acceptance for ‘The Planting Season’ on the Wednesday of my Writer’s Group, I couldn’t celebrate it then. The past weekend was Father’s Day. R- came by and we grilled. Monday tends to be ‘cleaning day,’ and I did clean, but then I slipped into something nice and the champagne flutes came down, got dusted off and when B came home, we popped the cork.

Now it’s Tuesday, the morning after and I’m updating my blog.

I’m neglecting to say that I also wrapped up a new story and will be sending that off soon; I have another written in my notebook based on a dream I had and three poems that don’t seem too shabby. Like I said — an incredible few weeks. And I need another cup of coffee, (and an aspirin) so excuse me for a bit…

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