Shortlisted!

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The An Cathach manuscript. Photo by Annie Gormlie, used under Creative Commons license

Just found out my poem “The Battler” made the shortlist for the “Lining our Thoughts” poetry competition from Anam Cara retreat in Ireland. The poem compares my experience advising my teen writing group to an old Irish legend of a holy book with special powers.

While winning an award (or in this case, a free stay at the retreat) would have been exciting, I find it equally valuable to know my work was viewed as quality.

I will eventually–somehow–make it back to Ireland to stay at this lovely writers retreat.

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Moments of Light

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My Moments of Light jar with the first three entries for January, backdropped by a conveniently appropriate path into the unknown. Photo by Kelli Fitzpatrick. 

My first year of teaching, a student gave me a Christmas gift–a Mason jar filled with homemade hot cocoa mix. If you exist in near proximity to me for any length of time, you will deduce–as this astute 11th grader did–that I love chocolate, probably more than I should. So I was understandably excited about receiving an entire quart of it. But that’s not the most memorable part of the experience.  Continue reading

Scripting a Dream: Authorship as Language

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“Are you dreaming in their language?”

A line from the recent science fiction film Arrival, starring Amy Adams and Jeremy Renner who play a linguist and a mathematician tasked with communicating with alien visitors. The two discuss how dreaming in a language denotes that a special line of language acquisition has been crossed–the subconscious is now expressing itself in this new mode of meaning.  Continue reading

My experience with Flash Fiction Challenge and why you should write outside your genre TODAY

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Comedy. Of all the genres they could assign me, it had to be comedy.

Earlier this week, I found out I broke into the 3rd Round of the NYC Midnight Flash Fiction Challenge, meaning I got to advance to the next stage of the competition (a semi-final round, essentially) with the chance to qualify for finals in December. In my year plus of participating in NYC writing competitions, this is the furthest I’ve advanced.

But luck of the draw means a new set of random prompts for each round. And luck decided to stretch my abilities by throwing a genre at me that I’m less than confident in. Continue reading