Sunday, August 31, 2008

No Contest but check Michael Moore preview: Election Guide 2009

I cried last night after I got over the shock of who McCain picked. I cried because I'm still not convinced that there's not some deeper underlying conspiracy theory here. I cried because I'm also still not convinced that Obama will really win. Of course he has my vote.

Yes, I know you've heard it all, but how do you explain it that the one president we had who was Catholic was killed? How do you explain that the Freemason symbol adorns our dollar bills and that every president we've had has been a member.

I cried because I read Michael Moore's Election Guide and saw the truth written there.
The Democrats appear to be professional losers. They are so pathetic at their ability to win elections they even lose when they win! Al Gore won the 2000 election, but for some strange reason, he didn't become the President of the United States. If you are unable as a party to get the landlord to turn over the keys to a house that is yours, what the hell good are you?
Do we all remember our outrage & impotence back then. And Katrina??? How many Katrinas & 9/11's do we have to suffer before we get it.
How many Democrats does it take to lose the most easily winnable election in American history? Not many. Just a few "close advisers" to Barack Obama who tell him a bunch of asinine stuff and he ends up listening to them instead of his own heart. As the party hacks in the past two elections have proven, once they get the candidate's ear, they rest of us might just as well go all van Gogh on ourselves with ours
If Obama is going to listen to his handlers who want to take care of the "Michelle" problem, they're eliminating the charm of his campaign. If he begins to discuss how he is going to deal with the Iran Israel problem with punitive methods, he falls into the trap of agreeing with the scum we're trying to rid ourselves from. Four more years of McCain is four more with GW Bush.

Here's what Obama said: "The danger from Iran is grave, it is real, and my goal will be to eliminate this threat."
". . . Let there be no doubt: I will always keep the threat of military action on the table to defend our security and our ally Israel. Sometimes there are no alternatives to confrontation."
Why he would say this is obvious, he's trying to gain supporters from the Republican side. But then why would the Republicans pick an imitation when they can have the real thing.

Hope is all I'm left with; that & the desire to create a better world to leave to our children tomorrow.

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Self Publishing - check links to Dan Poynter & Danny O. Snow

These two guys, Dan Poynter & Danny O. Snow, have been running a website and publishing books about self publishing for the longest. If any of you writers out there (and by all indications there are a lot of you) are considering the do's and don'ts of self publishing, these guys have it down to a science. You don't have to buy their book. You can read them online and subscribe to their website for free. They only send their newsletter to subscribers who they have plenty of. Their tip of the month makes sense too, that if you have a book that will be in production during October, November or December, use a 2009 copyright date so it won't look like your book's outdated when January rolls around. As Robert Brewer said in one of his hints, don't bother to self publish at all until you have a decent number of your poems published elsewhere, both online and paper books.
Check these dudes out if you're going the way of many others to self publish...

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Survived The Accident

On Tuesday afternoon a city bus ran right into the rear end of my beloved Prius. Although there's a slight dent my rear brake & signal light are intact. Only the outside bottom shield of the rear light is cracked a very little bit. I picked out the plastic and put book tape over the crack so I can use it until it's replaced without it shorting out from any possible rain storm.
Can you imagine we fucking got hit by a New York City Transit Authority Bus and neither of us was hurt.
The bus was picking up and discharging passengers on 135th & Riverside and I was in the 3rd lane making a left when the bus swerved out at too fast & at too much of an angle. He just smacked my beautiful black Prius in the ass. Dig this - only a slight dent. Some people may whine about this pain in the ass, but hey, that's all it is, a pain in the ass. It's not a major life problem, it's my car. The fortuitous omen about the event is that DubbleD & me are safe & sound, not a scratch on us. Pain in the ass is the $110 I have to pay to put a new light because even though only the cover is damaged on the outside shell, the entire light fixture must be replaced. Replacing the light means total removal of the fender. Can you imagine? Simple becomes complicated. Isn't that the way of life?
Hey I have an angel looking over my shoulder because by now I should've been dead a dozen times. I am fortunate to be here today to share this with you.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

"Psss Let Me Tell You A Secret!" (girls only)

All right I'm gonna reveal the secret. The time is sworn. Today I had some time off for good behavior after a fully loaded built in drama. No thank god it didn't concern the baby mama. But on to more important girlie talk.
I'm coming down off my writing spree where I've been writing about writing & reading, writing poems or articles & interviews, & writing my novel. I have to come down from all that to talk plain girl-talk shit.
The other day, Vanessa Martir, one of my homies, told me where to go to buy my next bra. She said, "You've got to visit Victoria's Secret when I complained about my recent & unsuccessful bra search. Thank you Vanessa. I found some really cute bras and now I'm waiting for my coupons so I can buy more of them.
Can you believe it gals that before this I didn't have a clue as to how to make my tits look like a shelf. Then this gal helping me at VS says, this is our shelfari bra. Anyway this was great fun but annoying too. It took a lot of work to find the perfect bra with the perfect fit, but I admit I am now sold, VS is the place to go.
I had to try on about 8 bras before I found the one with the perfect fit. From there it went fast and suddenly I had 6 perfect fits. I decided to only take 3 because of the special coupon deal that came with the credit card application. Through all this DubbleD waited patiently for me. He got busy with his poetry and likely just forgot about me when I suddenly reappeared. He was relieved and hungry to see me in my new clothes which he deserved after all that patient waiting.
I can't believe I'm writing about this but what good are secrets if they're not shared. Psss, it's my secret 2!!!!

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

thinking reading & writing

My characters come alive when I write them and very often I am acting entire scenes out while writing ... or so it would seem to anyone watching me. This is great for writing dialogue because when you speak your characters' lines you know when they ring true.
DD says he never did this before but by watching me he observes how it helps me. I do this with my narrative poetry as well. I love friends with keen ears too. I like to read to people from my book or new poetry. Either. Somehow either way - I'm not exactly what you expect me to be. I've been compared to post modernist and confessional style poets but the truth is, at the time I was being accused of following or imitating them, I had never read Ginsberg or Sylvia Plath. I was too busy writing 10 to 30 page term papers several times each term. I didn't have time for much else besides being a part time mom. Back then, I didn't do a lot of creative writing except for my journals. I went to Columbia for 8 straight years to get a B.A. & M.S.W.. Before that was me & my GED.
It's kind of amazing when you consider that drop out Joy became the ivy league drop in and now has two masters degrees. Colombia is tough and competitive - I kid you not. To maintain a 3.3 average is a full time job. After I
finally graduated and settled into a J. O. B., I began writing again. It's hard out here for us poets and writers.
The point is that sometimes it's a deterrent when you really are difficult to pigeonhole. When you sound truly like you and no one else - it's harder to fit in anyplace. People say they want creative and unique because that is what we're all trained to say. The truth is sometimes the feeling you get from reading someone and feeling uncomfortable can be ok too and has its own power. Not everyone can love me or you or anyone else's work. Some people are naturally more controversial and colorful. It's the way life goes. "Explore ... Search for more, no more prisoners of war..."
Celebrating page 170 on my grind plus maintaining this blog and writing poetry too...
Oh and I forgot and working on the magazine and two anthologies!

Reading writing ... equals living - how what you read can affect what you write.

Right now I'm reading Carl Hiaasen's Nature Girl and recently finished Juno Diaz's The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao. Also in the past year, I have read a lot from Elizabeth Benedict, who analyzes and fully understands the depths of her characters. The point of all this is that in the last two days of writing I feel my style being freed up and am more willing to take risks with my writing style, which is also fun. When I read Diaz, I noted how sometimes I had been amazed at certain turns of speech he used because I had used the same exact turn of words in dialogues. Coincidence or perhaps observational skills. Some of his language was very flavorful. In thinking more about that I realized that there are many are euphemisms and dialectical familiarities specific to people who have lived in the Heights or maybe I could spread that to include the whole of the northeast.
These thoughts and feelings brought me a step further in my novel writing. On around page 90 of my novel I started to cut loose more. Another thing I've begun to do, is to let some rhymes slip into my character's speech only when when they appear there on my tongue. Diaz inspired me to explore my own style more.
I have great respect for poets who write in form although mostly I tend not to. That said, I have pantoums and sestinas as well as quadrants, sonnets, lists & several others. The same with rhyme, I respect all poets who rhyme. I say what I mean to say if I rhyme or not in the spheres of time. DX always teases me and says I rhyme all the time when I speak so I don't have to rhyme in my poetry. He's prejudiced since he loves my poetry.
I have always read a great deal my entire life and still do. Reading helps make us good writers. On occasion I like to imitate someone I like. Early on in this blog I have an imitation writing posted of Marguerite Duras. Check it. I also recently friended Marilyn Nelson (on FB) whose work I greatly admire. I actually wrote a poem imitating her style in a class in my Masters writing program. Maybe I'll post it & maybe not. I'll think about it.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Out & About After Our Fav Haunt

DD & Me in our fav haunt

Page one hundred eighteen on my grind...

Between yesterday & today I wrote 12 pages to my novel.
Yay, Joy is on her grind!
We took yesterday off in the afternoon to check out our regular hang out, Indian Road Cafe, who I have to say, has really popped their menu up. We're loving it.
Also met some really nice fb people and helped two who didn't know how to add their blogs to their pages. There are so many talented people here, I'm honored to be part of a crowd that filled with oceans of inspiration.
It's cool when you get to help someone and cool too when it happens to you, and when someone will lend you a hand. That's what life's about.
Check the new pics.
Dubblex wanted me to put a selection here. If anyone's interested check out lipstick diaries at B & N for a preview of the novel.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008


This has been a very strange year. I left my dept. Of Ed. job last August. Last April my short story from my novel in process was published in Lipstick Diaries and in less than a month I had sold over 110 books on my own. I began work transposing the completed screenplay into a novel and the short story, False Pride, is the beginning of the novel. What surprised me most of all was how easily Lipstick Diaries sold. It was almost as if they sold themselves. Probably J's cover does that. Several women who worked with me commented that they had seen the book at B & N and had planned to buy it anyway. What I liked most about this experience was how people came back to me to talk about it. Many people liked it that a white jewish woman involved with a Dominican drug dealer was a new story to them. One woman who I worked with and who only knew my "professional face" complained that I was "trying to be black" because of my writing style. J laughed when I told him and said he guessed she doesn't know any white girls from the hood.
I am always writing - even if I'm writing thoughts or writing conversations imagined or real. I've also written about 10 poems a month for the last 9 months, some of which I continue to work on. I've been working on the novel several days a week. Sometimes shit gets in the way. Emergencies, hospital visits & outpatient surgeries for either my love or me. Shit happens.
Overall, I'm content with my progress. It's unbelievable how busy one can be and not have a 9 to 5. It always struck me whenever I've had any time off how busy I am and how much there is to do. It's a wonder I had time to work when I did work!
I've also been going to the gym regularly since November and am feeling much better. Mostly I concentrate on weights. At first I was going no less than 3 times per week and now it's about 2 or 3. The good news is that I took off 35 of the 50 pounds I had put on. Yay Joy! Joy is gonna be skinny!!!! When the heat lets up I'll get back to the elliptical and treadmill. That will give me a jump start. The other great thing is that I can actually eat and not worry. My metabolism has picked up so I eat 3 or 4 times a day. I can actually eat more and weigh less. Do you love it?????
I'm about to write a few more lines on my novel b4 I join dubblex in bed. I worked on some poems that need reworking today too. Tomorrow we are meeting D's Daddy for dinner at his favorite Italian place.
Life is short and I want to enjoy my time on our planet. Gotta go now so I'll say good bye.

Saturday, August 09, 2008

My Peeps

Yesterday we went for a walk and ended spending time in Indian Road Cafe with our friends, the crew from Augustus Publishing. Later while chilling, other people dropped by and sat with us. Vanessa Martir (she wrote Woman's Cry) was there and so was J. Will Teez dropped by and talked about his party on Sunday. There was a gal who does marketing and another guy who does movie editing for Universal Films.
DubbleX and I had our usual carafe of red wine. It was good fun all around until Anthony said he hated my new poem about the uterus and he really wasn't down with that. Will jumped in and said he's down with uteruses because his daughter has one and so does his mother so I should send the poem to him.
Eventually I agreed that most men don't like to talk about such things and that it's a mistake to give them poems of this sort unless they're down with it like Will is!
Vanessa was great fun and knows a lot of ropes and how to pull them right and started giving me personal instructions. I'm always down to learn more...

Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Jack Wiler

DubbleX & I went to see Jack Wiler's play yesterday at Pace University's Black Box theatre. Jack was in top form and although he said he needed to look at his words a few times, he had it down pat. Hey it's not easy to recite over a half hour of poetry from memory with no break! The story and the words are compelling, they hit home. Some beautiful turn of phrases too. I love Jack's poetry!
Although Jack & I only met on facebook by accident, he recognized me immediately. I went crazy for a few days and kept adding people to see what would happen. What did happen was FB finally blocked me from adding more & I lost interest in the add game. That said, my adding Jack led to an exchange of words (how could there be two poets who wouldn't have much to say) and friendship. BTW, the proceeds from the show all goes to Gay Men's Health Crisis, a very well worth while organization to give something to if you can.
Steven McCasland, Director is astute & talented. He broke down two of Jack's books to create this show. The entire play was extremely digestible and I'm still absorbing it today, the day after.
If you have the time or inclination, there's another 3 days running where other actors get to step in Jack's shoes. I wanted to hear Jack perform his own words.