Since January 2021, I’ve been keeping a list of my writing activity for each month (here’s last month’s). I do so partly as a form of encouragement for myself–to show that I am still able to do some writing despite the energy-sucking terrors of the pandemic (Which is still going on! Keep wearing masks!)–and partly as an archive that I can look back on in the future. As such, I will include negative happenings (e.g., receiving rejections–unfortunately rather numerous this month), not just positive ones.
I think that it is important for me to share my list publicly as a queer disabled writer of color because mainstream discourse tries to either pretend voices such as mine do not exist or actively tries to suppress them. Whether one is part of a marginalized group or not, writing is an essential act of resistance in these terrible times, so I hope that my list offers encouragement to others.
The list is basically in chronological order.
1. Wrote a haiku or senryu on most mornings.
2. Submitted ten poems to Kingfisher, all of which they rejected.
3. Began the second semester of my MFA program. Thus far, the semester has included writing my first lyric poem in about four years (which I subsequently submitted to a journal), and my first short story in twenty. I also had some nonfiction workshopped, which went well.
4. Submitted a craft essay to a magazine and had it rejected.
5. Got asked to review a forthcoming book on Mennonite literature by a journal I’ve never published in before, and said yes.
6. Updated the Mennonite/s Writing Bibliographies.
7. Interviewed Samuel R. Delany for the Dangerous Visions and New Worlds: Radical Science Fiction symposium co-sponsored by City Lights Bookstore and PM Press. You can watch the interview here.
8. Submitted an essay about Frank O’Hara that I wrote last semester to a journal.