I’ve just received an Oregon Literary Fellowship

I can hardly believe I’m typing this. Every time I look at the letter, which I received in the mail last Thursday, I have to read the first paragraph two or three times just to make sure it’s real. But it’s true: I’ve been awarded an Oregon Literary Fellowship. This is huge news. This is momentous:Continue reading “I’ve just received an Oregon Literary Fellowship”

Research tip #7: Check the map

So, I’ve finished a wholesale revision and final(ish) edit on my Civil War novel, the first draft of which started me on my whole “Researching for fiction” series a couple of years ago. And in the process of working over that text, I came across another aspect of research I’ve long been aware of butContinue reading “Research tip #7: Check the map”

Hatfields & McCoys & scapegoats & baptisms

(UPDATE — 8-31-2014: I mentioned while writing this series of posts that I was revising my Civil War novel at the time and was watching this miniseries for atmosphere. That novel I was revising is Hagridden, and it’s out now from Columbus Press. If you like this miniseries, you might like that novel. Click here for moreContinue reading “Hatfields & McCoys & scapegoats & baptisms”

Hatfields & McCoys (and play-pretties)

(UPDATE — 8-31-2014: I mentioned while writing this series of posts that I was revising my Civil War novel at the time and was watching this miniseries for atmosphere. That novel I was revising is Hagridden, and it’s out now from Columbus Press. If you like this miniseries, you might like that novel. Click here for moreContinue reading “Hatfields & McCoys (and play-pretties)”

An animated history of the English language

A friend of mine shared this video on Facebook earlier today, and it’s just so fantastically succinct and hilarious I had to post it here. It’s “The History of English in Ten Minutes”: My friend found it on a blog post at Milk And Cookies, but it’s pretty widely available. What’s particularly genius about thisContinue reading “An animated history of the English language”

How to win the Nobel Prize (by eating a puppy)

A couple of weeks ago, the Nobel committee in Stockholm announced that Swedish poet Tomas Transtromer had won this year’s Nobel Prize in Literature. Congrats, Tomas Transtromer! But apparently I’m in the minority over here in the US, because Americans in general have been booing the Nobel Prize for a few years now, ever since Horace Engdahl, theContinue reading “How to win the Nobel Prize (by eating a puppy)”

PCA/ACA update, days 1 and 2

These have been some packed days. And for some reason, everyone is sending me to comics panels (no pun intended)! Not that there’s anything wrong with that — I love comics. But it’s starting to feel weird because today I attended a library panel (on defining the role of librarians through popular representations) and woundContinue reading “PCA/ACA update, days 1 and 2”

PCA/ACA: It begins

Today, the 2011 conference of the Popular Culture Association/American Culture Association begins. In just a few hours, I’ll be attending my first panel, and as the conference carries on over the next few days, I’ll be posting updates of the panels I’ve attended and the things I’m learning. To which end: the poll results (howeverContinue reading “PCA/ACA: It begins”

A Writer’s Notebook: “mentor texts”

I think I might accidentally have started a new novel. It doesn’t look like much in this exercise, I admit, but believe me, it’s frighteningly large inside my brain. I don’t have time for this right now, frankly, and I’m going to have to put this on hold for a while (I might save itContinue reading “A Writer’s Notebook: “mentor texts””