In some ways, Kavanaugh’s testimony was like every writer’s Shitty First Draft: there was true meaning buried in that mess, but it had yet to be exhumed. The advice I give to students who are struggling with their own first drafts is to Interrogate the Weird. That’s because weirdness usually signals something that deserves to be unpacked.
There was plenty of Weird in Kavanaugh’s testimony.
I’ve never kept a diary. At least not since I was eight, when my father bought two blank journals and suggested that he and I spend time together every evening writing in our diaries. For several weeks we did just that, sitting side by side on the living room couch and recording the events of the day. One day I came home from school and found my diary in the wrong place on the bookshelf. When I inquired about this, my dad said, “I have to admit something to you. I was so curious about what you’ve been writing that I couldn’t help myself, so I went in your room and read it.”
…disability is too often excluded in discussions of diversity, a good deal of which, for good reason, focuses on race. This silence is especially noteworthy because disability crosses racial, gender, sexuality, class, and national boundaries.
MFAW-VT faculty member Jan Clausen’s review of new poetry and hybrid works appears in the July/August issue of the Women’s Review of Books. She addresses Ada Limón’s poetry collection The Carrying and Amy Fusselman’s lyric essay Idiophone.
At this past residency in Vermont, a few faculty members were sitting around before a meeting, talking about nothing in particular, and then one of us, for whatever reason that made sense in the moment, was describing a scene in
Whenever you bump up against a writing situation that feels impossible, remember the Sugar Balloon, and all the experimentation, tenacity, innovation, determination, and risk that it took to arrive at this floating answer to a once-thought-impossible question.
The paragraph or so of writing in preparation for this post I began on an empty page of an old, located notebook, one that flips vertically like a police ticket or meter maid book, but unlike law enforcement trappings