Today, Poetry Week continues. My friends and I shall go to the library to see if we can participate in the Hobo Poetry Project--more on that tomorrow.
I didn't do much with poetry yesterday. It was a day of meetings. Some of them were enjoyable: a meeting that was more lunch with work friends than meeting. Some of them were not as nourishing.
In between, I got caught up on e-mails that needed to be sent, but avoided the looming task of sorting through old e-mails. I evaluated a transcript here and there and awarded transfer credit. And I sorted through my memoir manuscript.
It's looking like my spouse will be fairly self-sufficient by Feb. 1. I had planned a retreat there long before I knew my spouse would have surgery; I've been prepared to cancel if I needed to, but it's looking like I won't need to do that.
Hurrah! I'm hoping to make progress on my memoir. And last night, I hit a milestone. At least, I think it's a milestone.
When I started thinking about a memoir, a Kathleen Norris collection of essays, I went through my blogs to see how many posts might work. I pasted them all into a huge document. And I've spent the month of January combing through that document to see if my initial impressions held up.
I got rid of all the photos that I'd posted, and I got rid of all the posts that, on second look, didn't seem to fit. Actually, I'm too superstitious to get rid of them. I put them in a different document.
So, now I have a manuscript to consider at Mepkin Abbey. I've got about a hundred pages of good essays that I need to fit into the seasonal organization. I've got to consider whether the posts stand on their own or if they need revision--and if they need revision, how much?
I've kept the blog posts that I wrote when it looked like I might lose my job and the ones when I realized I would keep my job. That could be quite the narrative hook at the beginning: here's a job that doesn't always integrate nicely with the other elements of my life--but what happens when loss looms? I thought an introduction like that might hook readers.
My spouse thought it might limit readership. He thinks lots of people will be interested in a memoir that documents trying to live an integrated life as one works in a corporate setting. He thinks fewer people will want to read about job loss.
I think he's probably right, but I'll consider it all more fully at Mepkin.
So, more memoir writing than poetry yesterday, but important work nonetheless.
I did catch an amazing interview with Poet Laureate Natasha Trethewey as I caught up on episodes of the Diane Rehm show that I had missed. You, too, can listen here.
Onward to my poetry Saturday!
Settling In and Waiting for September
4 weeks ago