Spread the Word

Over the past two months, an sneaky anonymous artist has been leaving small takeaways in the library where I work.  Typically, we’ll find a small plastic bag on the shelves filled with small magnets made from dichroic glass & a printed message inviting whoever finds them to take them & enjoy.  Patrons have found them too & in general, coming across the packets are a nice little unexpected surprise.  A disruption of craft & charitable feeling into a regular routine.

The whole experience has gotten me thinking about some of the more experimental writing prompts we undertook in my last year of Creative Writing at Mary Wash.  We students were encouraged to think of ways to get our stories in front of people: whether it was fliers we posted in the department hall, mini-books with flash fictions, postcards, or blogs.  The anonymous artists has inspired me to spread some found stories around my little town.  There’s even a sort of romantic element to the fact that we have a working rail station running through town & that anyone could come across my words.

But here’s where I trip myself up: thinking about what to write & to send out into the world.  I ask myself what I would want people to come across & the immediate response is, well, not my own words, maybe a bit of poetry or a collection of famous sayings.  Pardon me, self, but that is not the point of the exercise.  Then I think, oh well, I could root through something I’ve already polished, maybe pull out a snippet or two?  Again, self, this is about spontaneity, not a practiced recitation.  I mean, c’mon, you write a blog with entries you give not much though to.  You can’t think of anything?

The truth is, I can, but I’m nervous.  I work in a library in a small town.  I keep envisioning how one of the Libertarian regulars would react to finding my little anonymous work.  Or one of the homeschool moms.  Or what if one of my illiterate patrons came across it, realized there was nothing they understood, & threw it away.  Or or or or. . .

As you can see, dear Reader, this post is really just a way for me to talk myself into both the act of creating & the act of letting go control.  Because really, that’s the crux of any creative act & it is one I struggle with still.  But when the tension is resolved &, as a result, a stranger sees the world anew, something magical has truly happened.


Revisiting Dante

I’m rereading Dante Alighieri’s Divine Comedy at the moment as part of a small discussion group headed up by one of my friends.  I know it probably sounds completely uncool to say I’m enjoying re-immersing myself in this ambitious, influential work, but then I’ve always embraced being a Book Dork.  And reading Dante is a challenge that has consistently challenged me as a reader.

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Considering Cosplay

I recently went to an awesome event at Richmond’s Poe Museum.  It was a celebration of Vincent Price’s Poe movies & I had so much fun, I wrote about it.  One of the sponsors who attended, that I didn’t get a chance to mention, was RavenCon, Richmond’s very own Sci-Fi & Fantasy con that’s getting ready to celebrate their 10th anniversary.

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Books, Thoughts

Off The Shelf: The Redbreast (Harry Hole #3)

Winter is here, well past my summer resolution to read the Harry Hole series.  I’ve had The Redbreast read and noted for a while, but hadn’t gathered the notes together.  So, here we are, better late than never.  Harry Hole #2, aka Cockroaches, still isn’t out in my country until next year.  I’ll be coming back to it.  For now, enjoy my thoughts on Redbreast!  Spoilers abound for those who haven’t read the book.

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