Braving the Dog Days of Summer

Edna O’Brien once titled a novel August Is a Wicked Month. Well, it’s been wicked. Here in eastern Massachusetts, we’ve had to deal with many days of oppressive humidity. (Not that I should complain – another long New England winter is just around the corner.) Drive around here, and you’ll see a lot of brown patches in people’s front lawns because of the lack of rain. And I’m sure electric companies are profiting nicely from the overuse of air conditioners (although in all fairness, I do love sleeping in a cool room at night).

But for me, avoiding the heat hasn’t been the only challenge this month. I’ve also been trying to weather what has seemed to be a storm of rejections. As of this writing, I’m now up to eight this month. Of course, I’m sure people have received more than that in a month, but it’s still a lot.

One reason for all these rejections is I submitted a lot in July — eleven, to be exact. Of course, eleven submissions have the potential to be eleven rejections, although the opposite could happen, too.

As far as submissions this month, I haven’t sent out as many. For starters, I’ve had to deal with some things in my non-writing life, which I won’t get into now but may write about later. Also, I’ve been working on some new things, some of which are ready to go and some that are close, so I plan to come back strong in September.

However, it hasn’t been all bad this month. As I mentioned last time, my Veruca Salt-inspired poem “Volcano Girl” was published. Also, I did get two acceptances, one from Amaryllis Poetry, which will publish one of my poems in November. The other was from Hand Job Zine, which published two poems on their blog on Wednesday, “Tomatoes and Radio Wires” and “Invader.” (You can read them here.)

The first was inspired by a line from Neutral Milk Hotel’s “Two-Headed Boy Part II,” while the second was inspired by a Bernard Cohen painting.

Not only is Hand Job Zine a cool pub, but co-editor Jim Gibson has been very encouraging and supportive, so I’d like to once again thank him.

So enough about me: How is your August going? Please feel free to write about it in the comments section.

Volcano Girl

I’m a few days late posting this, but my poem “Volcano Girl” has been published in Up the Staircase Quarterly‘s “It’s the 90s!” issue. (The two Veruca Salt songs that inspired the poem are below.) It’s truly an honor to be included with many other talented poets. You can read it here.

I know it’s been a while since I’ve written a real blog post, but I hope to have something new once the summer’s over.