Hello, Nova Scotia. Open ragged landscape, thick seafood chowder, long warm vowels in every accent. My friend Teddy wrote a song a long time ago that included the lines: it’s summer, finally–still only ten degrees! and he’s right. Last night it was a nippy 13ºC.

With being home comes friends and family–I finally met my sister’s youngest daughter for the first time, and tomorrow I’m attending a high-school friend’s baby shower. It’s a little bit madness, and the flying around back and forth between city and valley is taxing. But it’s good. Right? I should be grateful because it’s all good. And there’s even good news in my writing life. My degree is done! it’s in the mail. I have a poem (Midwinter Horoscope) coming out in Bacopa Literary Review in September, and I got word that another poem (After the Acquittal) is a semifinalist for North Carolina Literary Review‘s James Applewhite Poetry Prize. I’ll learn if I’m in the magazine (and therefore a finalist) sometime in July. The final judge is Allison Adelle Hedge Coke (this is a link to her bio page at the Poetry Foundation).

The highway coming into the valley. If you’re from here, you know exactly where this is and why it matters.

Now I’m off to write a cover letter for a great-sounding job at one of Halifax’s universities. Cross your fingers for me, it would be a really lucky shot. Now that I’m returned, and halfway settled, I will likely make up another reading list or review of what I’ve devoured recently. I’ll also get a #1000WordsOfSummer post up soon. (Maybe I’ll make a bar graph. I like bar graphs.) The whole point of the challenge is to dedicate enough time to your creative work to get down a minimum of 1000 words every day. I think it’s meant to only be a two-week challenge (15 June–30 June) but I think I want to stretch it til 15 July… or maybe get into the habit and just try to write that damned much. Margaret Atwood was on my instagram this morning and she said: “The only way to be a writer is to write. Write more. Write better.” My father used to tell me to “make better mistakes tomorrow.”


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