Tag Archives: Writers

Yoga for Writing Podcast

In case you haven’t noticed yet, my new podcast, Yoga for Writing: a podcast for miserable writers, is going strong.  I just completed episode 12 (one part of a 3-part series about Writing and Letting Go) and have no intention of stopping. I’ve really been enjoying applying yoga principles to my writing life and exploring even deeper how yoga can help writers to be less miserable. I’ve been practicing yoga for a couple of decades and teaching for nearly three years now and the lessons of yoga have seamlessly integrated into all aspects of my life without requiring me to think about it much. Just the act of practicing yoga has improved my life. In this podcast, I hope to help others in the same way, even those who may not find themselves on the mat. I secretly hope to encourage people to practice yoga on the mat (not much of a secret anymore, I guess) but I’m glad just getting people to see yoga as more than just a bunch of twisty poses. Already, I’ve heard from people who have told me that the podcasts have helped them. That’s the best. Moving forward, I hope to hear from more people. I know there are plenty of people struggling with their writing out there or wanting to write more but feeling held back for some reason. Don’t give up. Keep up the good work.

The Inaugural Taos Writers Conference

I am teaching an all-day intensive workshop at the inaugural, upcoming Taos Writers Conference. It’s called New Fiction for the Digital Age. With the onset of the internet and social media, narratives have taken on several new forms that break apart previous ideas of what a story should be. I will read examples and demonstrate through generative writing exercises ways in which we can experiment with traditional writing forms for the internet or print.

You can register here by March 1st: www.taoswritersconference.org

Literary Paris: Bookshops, Cafes and Cemeteries

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Before I traveled to Paris, I wondered what it was about the city of lights that so intrigued authors and stimulated so much writing for hundreds of years.  But after visiting, the mystery eluded me no longer. Paris is romantic. And I don’t mean it’s a great place to inspire love affairs and spark old flames, though it is. I mean romantic in the most prevailing way—mystical, exciting, exotic, fantastical. One can lose themselves in the narrow cobble-stoned side streets, the medieval architecture, the multitude of cafes and museums, the sparkling Eiffel Tower and the lights reflected on the flowing Seine. In Paris, there is endless inspiration.

This summer, for our 10th anniversary, my husband and I decided to take our first trip alone in eight years to Paris, the dreamiest place we could think of. Since we are both writers, I wanted to try to experience Paris the way ex-pat writers did back in the day. Of course, there were also a million other things we wanted to do. I realized that the best plan was to spend the morning writing in cafes and give our afternoons over to tourism. Continue Reading →

Book Launch at SOMOS

Jo-reading-1 Jo-reading-2 Jo-reading-3Had a great time at the book launch last week at SOMOS in Taos. It was an honor to read with such great authors as Iver Arnegard and Linda Michel-Cassidy. A couple of friends said it was the first reading they had ever been to. I guess if I can get people to come to a reading, I’ve done my job. These photos are by Micheal Benanav. The last one is of me watching the film I made exclusively for the book tour (in other words, you can’t see it anywhere else until after the tour). I was a little nervous about showing the film because it was different than what I usually do, but I think it worked out well and it looked cool on the big screen. In a few days I’ll be reading all by myself (a first?) in Denver at the BookBar.

denver reading

 

Photos from Love On The Rocks

Taos, NM

February 13, 2015

Me, reading

Me, reading

reading

The whole gang

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Bruce Katlin

reading2

Gary Feuerman

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Ned Dougherty

reading4

hee, hee

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Clinton Murphy

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Eric Mack

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John Biscello

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Linda Michel-Cassidy

Photos by Laura Brzozowski

 

Article in Taos News About Lit Up

 

Show producer and performer, John Biscello

Show producer and performer, John Biscello

Looks like it’s going to be another sold out performance. Check out the lovely write up we got in the Tempo for our upcoming storytelling/literary/comedy event. Great anti-Valentine’s Day propaganda.

Lit Up Taos Returns with Love on the Rock

Lit Up peeps

Lit Up peeps

As you may recall from our previous episode last fall, Lit Up Writers is a live show blending storytelling, literature and comedy. The show did so well to raise funds for the Metta Theatre youth program that it returns with a pre-Valentine’s Day treat.

Love on the Rocks will feature comedic tales revolving around the dysfunctional side of Eros. Heartbreak, crushes, kinks, obsession, and other barbed elements, affirming the words of the immortal Bard: ‘Love is a smoke and is made with the fume of sighs.'”

I will be reading an essay about an ex-boyfriend who was both a blessing (he imported me to Alaska in 2000 and although our relationship only lasted 6 months, my relationship with Alaska lasted 6 years) as well as a curse, (I won’t give away that part of the story; you’ll have to go to the event to find out what happened).

Featuring:  Gary Feuerman, John Biscello, Johanna DeBiase (!), Eric Mack, Bruce Katlin, Linda Michel-Cassidy, Ned Dougherty, and Clinton Murphy. Emceed by Dan Cassidy, with a special musical performance by Joel Larson.

$15. Limited seating. Reservations HIGHLY encouraged, as the last show sold out. 575-758-1104. This show is intended for mature audiences.

Ekphrasis and Xphrasis

Xphrasis April 25th

Xphrasis April 25th

Have you heard of this Ekphrasis thing? I like this definition I found on Wikipedia: “Ekphrasis has been considered generally to be a rhetorical device in which one medium of art tries to relate to another medium by defining and describing its essence and form, and in doing so, relate more directly to the audience, through its illuminative liveliness.” I love the sound of “illuminative liveliness.” Apparently, this idea of one art form describing another art form is, literally, ancient and noted as far back as Homer’s Illiad in which he references the completed shape of Hephaestus’s shield.

If you follow my work or website, you know that for the past few years I have been active in the Postcard Fiction Collaborative, a form of ekphrasis where writers write flash fiction pieces inspired by photographs. You may also be aware of my participation in Pecha Kucha a couple of years back. Pecha Kucha, an international event, can also be considered a form of ekphrasis. Creatives have twenty slides and twenty seconds per slide to talk about their work. This use of image and spoken word (or sometimes in Taos, dance, music, poetry and improv) also allows two or more mediums to play off of each other.

Another example of Ekphrasis, might be video poems, which I love and have made two; Threadbare and Sweet Dreams. In these cases, I had already written the prose and used  video or photography to illuminate my writing.

Most recently, Ekphrasis has been used as a means of bringing art and poetry together in events all over the country.

The most interesting form of Ekphrasis comes when more than one artist is at play. Lucky for me, I live in the most creative small town in America (you can quote me on that) full of artists, writers, musicians, and philanthropists (we need those to support all the creatives). Thanks to one amazingly inspired poet, Jen Acampora, we will be having an Ekphrasis event on April 25th here in Taos titled, Xphrasis. The event will take place inside a Salon/Gallery space called Salon X, hence the play on the name, Ekphrasis to Xphrasis. Love it. All the writers will read their work for the opening which will have both the art and framed poems/flash on display for people to buy.

Additionally, as if that wasn’t enough, Acampora encouraged artist and writers to extend the conversation outside of the opening and gallery exhibit and started a interactive blog. Check it out here: Xphrastic. For the sake of  “illuminative liveliness,” I submited a piece to compliment a painting by the surrealist painter Randall LaGro.