Books Acquired Recently

Cameron, Julia. The Artist’s Way: A Spiritual Path to Higher Creativity. 25th Anniversary Edition. New York: TarcherPerigree, 2016.

A colleague is working through the exercises in this book and recommended it to me. I have been thinking more and more about writing as a kind of spiritual discipline over the past year and look forward to reading this book as a resource in that journey. I bought it at Northshire Bookstore before the Laymon reading last night (discussed below).

Huber, Sonya. The “Backwards” Research Guide for Writers: Using Your Life for Reflection, Connection, and Inspiration. Sheffield, UK: Equinox Publishing, 2011.

A colleague recommended this textbook to me because I teach personal writing in my composition classes, so I ordered an examination copy. I think it might be helpful for my own writing as well.

Laymon, Kiese. Heavy: An American Memoir. 2018. New York: Scribner, 2019.

I saw Laymon read last night at Northshire Bookstore in Saratoga Springs, New York, and he was amazing! He was kind and insightful during the question and answer session after the reading. I had heard good things about him before but have not yet read any of his work. I bought a copy of his latest book and he graciously inscribed it for me.

Nelson, Maggie. The Latest Winter. 2003. London: Zed Books, 2018.

I love Nelson’s memoir The Argonauts, but have not read any of her poetry. While browsing before Laymon’s reading last night I came across this collection and decided to check it out.

Published by danielshankcruz

I grew up in New York City and lived in Lancaster, Pennsylvania; Goshen, Indiana; DeKalb, Illinois; and Salt Lake City, Utah before coming to Utica, New York. My mother’s family is Swiss-German Mennonite (i.e., it’s an ethnicity, not necessarily a theological persuasion) and my father’s family is Puerto Rican. I have a Ph.D. in English and currently teach at Utica College. I have also taught at Northern Illinois University and Westminster College in Salt Lake City. My teaching and scholarship are motivated by a passion for social justice, which is why my research focuses on the literature of oppressed groups, especially LGBT persons and people of color. While I primarily read and write about fiction, I am also a devoted reader of poetry because, as William Carlos Williams writes, “It is difficult / to get the news from poems / yet [people] die miserably every day / for lack / of what is found there.” Thinkers who influence me include Marina Abramovic, Kathy Acker, Di Brandt, Ana Castillo, Samuel R. Delany, Percival Everett, Essex Hemphill, Jane Jacobs, Walt Whitman, and the New York School of poets. I am also fond of queer Mennonite writers such as Stephen Beachy, Jan Guenther Braun, Lynnette Dueck/D’anna, and Casey Plett. In my free time I’m either reading, writing the occasional poem, playing board games (especially Scrabble, backgammon, and chess), watching sports (Let’s Go, Mets!), or cooking (curries, stews, roasts…).

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