Twitter is a great place for discovering interesting tidbits, and today, I came across a wonderful new place to lose a few hours. The Rumpus is a place for all things literary. You will find the usual book reviews and author interviews alongside several columns, comic strips and news of the weird. Two features in particular proved to be a worthwhile time suck this morning.
- The National Poetry Month Project: Each day in April, The Rumpus will post a previously unpublished poem solicited from a wide range of current poets. If you click through, you will find a link for last year's collection as well. I read, re-read, and then sat and stared at the Day #3 poem, "Why I did not Make Love to your Dead Body," by Kirsten Kaschock for a long time. Wow.... I'll be adding this site to my Interesting Reads links on the the right side of the blog.
- Dear Sugar: This is an advice column for writers. The first two entries I read blew me away. You should definitely click through and read the whole question and answer, especially if you are an artist of any kind, but I felt compelled to post a couple of her comments below.
I know it’s not easy being an artist. I know the gulf between creation and commerce is so tremendously wide that it’s sometimes impossible not to feel annihilated by it. A lot of artists give up because it’s just too damn hard to go on making art in a culture that by and large does not support its artists. But the people who don’t give up are the people who find a way to believe in abundance rather than scarcity. They’ve taken into their hearts the idea that there is enough for all of us, that success will manifest itself in different ways for different sorts of artists, that keeping the faith is more important than cashing the check, that being genuinely happy for someone else who got something you hope to get makes you genuinely happier too.
From "Write like a Motherfucker"
How many women wrote beautiful novels and stories and poems and essays and plays and scripts and songs in spite of all the crap they endured. How many of them didn’t collapse in a heap of “I could have been better than this” and instead went right ahead and became better than anyone would have predicted or allowed them to be. The unifying theme is resilience and faith. The unifying theme is being a warrior and a motherfucker. It is not fragility. It’s strength. It’s nerve. And “if your Nerve, deny you –,” as Emily Dickinson wrote, “go above your Nerve.” Writing is hard for every last one of us—straight white men included. Coal mining is harder. Do you think miners stand around all day talking about how hard it is to mine for coal? They do not. They simply dig.
Go...read, explore, be inspired by this site. As for me? I'm off to write like a motherfucker.