Friday, June 26, 2020

breeding monsters

Today I put the finishing touches on animal, vegetable, monster to submit to an open reading period whose deadline is creeping up in the next week.  Initially, I thought I might try sending dark country, but there are bits that need smoothing in there that are weaker.  One manuscript is about horror-movie monsters and suburbia, the other about art and monstrosity, so in many ways they compliment each other. In fact, they might be some strange loose tryptic or trilogy with the currently half-completed automagic manuscript with it's post-apocalypic villains and victorian serial killers.  But then so much in my work of late is somehow monsters, esp. The Shining poems, though in that case it's more of an American capitalist monstrosity.

I realized, though I've been playing with the word doc version for a while, somehow a book is somehow less real until you print out that neat stack. As I do one last check for typos, today felt like a birthing of sorts. The disparate projects that form it--the artist statements, the strangerie poems, my dog girl poems, and the ones I wrote on extinction and museum dioramas, all form a tidy knot, threaded through with questions on art and artifact and mortality.   We'll see how this girl does, though I am really only sending her one place (BLP), and if no takers, I will likely just issue her myself eventually (see my last post re: the book mss. and possible self-publication.)  I feel like I still want to write and find readers, but don't really want to play the book submission game any more.  To sink effort and money into contests and reading periods when I already have a pretty awesome relationship with a press. (but also a press who obv. doesn't have room for every thing I write).  Also, there are so many books by other authors, I don't like taking up more space than I need to.  I've enjoyed publishing tiny editions of individual projects , esp with artwork, , but I do like when things coalesce and constellate into longer book projects. Because of my slow journal submissions for individual poems, much of this is not yet published elsewhere just yet, so there will be peeks here and there if those get picked up in the coming months.

The world feels even weirder right now than previously.  So much is happening in some parts of the country in terms of cases and hospitalizations, yet Chicago is somehow opening back up.  Other places like NYC as well.  Next week, I'll be back in the library. Back to daily bus rides a few days a week.  I have some masks of course, after trying several Goldilocks style for long-term comfort, and a straw hat with a face sheild for public transportation. It kind of makes me look like a mysterious victorian beekeeper. I feel like it all will get worse before it gets better, so may invest in a hazmat suit at some point. The irony is, of course, introvert as I am, I'd be mostly content staying home forever, but there are books to process and materials to send and they are the more practical aspects to my employment. Don't think I haven't oft thought of running away from it all and into the forest to live in a tree or something.  But if I want to pay rent or continue to feed myself.  I have the opportunity to work at home a lot, bu so much I need to do, I need to do on site.  So, I am stuck.

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