David Dunton of Harvey Klinger sent me a friendly rejection, and a recommendation of another agent friend of his to send it to. I hear that agents do this sometimes. I really appreciated the lead!

So, I’ve shot off a query to Nikki Van Der Car at Sterling Lord Literistic based on this.

Other than that, I’ve been pretty busy escorting international students around a middle school today. No writing to see here. Move on to tomorrow.



All right, University of Iowa Library, whose idea was it to crank copy costs up to 15 cents? You know we can’t take those loose journals anywhere to copy for cheap. But perhaps I’ve answered my own question…

It’s been a busy day in doctorate town. I hit the jackpot (World Englishes volume 24, number 3, the Japanese symposium issue). I’ve also outlined the number of days that it’ll take me to crank out this paper. The answer is 8.

With that, I continue to type in data, using my caffeinated gray matter as the basis for many research decisions. After I am done with this paper, I am so going to revise that Gossamer and Viridian scene before moving into a Master and Margarita literary analysis.

This kind of writing seems like work.


Portus YA Reading Series

Dear Author Friends:

I am affiliated with the HPEF, a group of people who run Harry Potter symposiums. For some time, we have been wanting to expand our programming offerings. This year we’ve decided to add a YA track for new authors. To see more about it, please click below to read the whole call for readings.

The skinny is this: we’re currently soliciting YA authors to come and read their work at Portus 2008 in Dallas, Texas on July 10-13. If you’re chosen to read, like an academic presenter, you’ll be required to register for the conference, but at a reduced cost.

As part of the YA Reading Series, we’ll make every effort to get your books in the Vendor Room through the Barnes and Noble book fair we’ll be having. Every author will have the opportunity to read, and there will be autograph sessions as well. You’ll get a chance to sell books, gain exposure, and just maybe you can use the whole experience as a tax write-off.

If you’re interested, please feel free to read further. Also, please feel free to share this information, as well as the call for readings anywhere you think YA Friendly, YA or YR authors can be found. I’m happy to have you send me the appropriate connections, and I’ll take care of it as well.

Our submission deadline is May 15, 2008, after which myself and my crackerjack team of associates will pick out the authors for the series. There will be alternates, because authors must register for the convention before they are confirmed.

Continue reading “Portus YA Reading Series”

Small Press and Web Recommendations

A couple of writers I know have recently been published.

Dryad by Julie K. Rose is now available for your reading pleasure at Serendipity, the online journal of Magical Realism. Julie is a vivid writer, full of deep description.

And one of my fellow Broads from Broad Universe, Phoebe Wray has her new book, Jemma 7729 available for purchase from EDGE. Phoebe was a delight to hang out with last Wiscon.

Best of luck to both of these women with their new publications!

Scalzi on Writing

My friend Mark lent me John Scalzi’s book of writing essays some time ago, and I just started reading it on the exercise bike this morning. It’s tongue-in-cheek, and it’s sarcastic, but it’s also a solid piece of perspective.

Let me tell you why, if you’re a writer, you should read this.

Many of us base our writing in insecurity. We are, after all, artistic butterflies. Much of what we produce is beautiful, gossamer, and not worldly. Even if you have to work on your craft yet, this may well be how you view your work. We also, as artistic sorts often tend to do, look to find our work in other’s acceptance of us, and compare our success to the success of others.

Scalzi iterates as plainly as any writer I’ve ever seen what I consider to be the core of writing–stop worrying about others. You have your own writing to worry about.

Continue reading “Scalzi on Writing”

Back from Tai Chi Retreat

…you’d think I’d be all zen, but my body just hurts. Remember kids, if it doesn’t burn, it’s not zen. 😉

Seriously, I had a very worthwhile retreat. I learned a lot about the form, met a lot of nice people, had the best spinach lasagna I’ve ever had in my life, and I’ve learned Dominican sisters are fierce! I undertook my first labyrinth walk, and that was something.

Upon checking my email, Nancy Gallt let me know she was swamped, so no read there.

Tomorrow, alas, it’s back into the office to see to a few things that have popped up in my email box and to take care of the Portus YA series, as well as some plotting for a game and a presentation for some of Bryon’s kids. That could well be a full day at the office. Sometimes you win, sometimes you lose, but it’s all gotta get done.

Then, I’ll keep my head low at the library for the rest of the break.


Next Week’s Queries

Next week is spring break. I intend to either be behind a sewing machine or in the University of Iowa library, so I figured I’d best get next week’s queries off.

Without further adieu then, the next 4:

David Dunton of Harvey Klinger
Diane Dreher of Rights Unlimited
Jonathan Lazear of The Lazear Agency
Nancy Gallt of Nancy Gallt

I still have papers and the YA series to do over break, but that’s not too bad…



Good news here. I’ve been awarded an Endowed Faculty Chair for the Fall of 2008. What this means is that I’ll get six credits of release time and the resultant financial support from the college. Instead of teaching and/or administrating during that time, I will be working on Hulk Hercules: Professional Wrestler and a curriculum guide about classical Greek gods to go with it.

This means that next fall, I get to flirt with the idea of what it’d be like to write full time. Allison, my dean, and I have to hammer out all the particulars, but essentially I’ll be teaching and preparing for two less classes, and my coordinator duties will be somewhat reduced as I will be away from campus.

Sometimes the doctorate has bennies. Nice bennies.



Today’s rejection comes from Catherine Drayton of InkWell. Nothing special to add there.

Wiscon chocolate has arrived at my house! All of you coming to Wiscon to hear Julie Rose, Yolanda Joosten, Jenn Racek and myself read will get treated to 72 percent organic vegan chocolate that has been bought to benefit endangered animals. At the event, we will also feature art work by artist Cat Horsfield. Oh yeah.

I don’t think you can get any more Wiscon than that.