Tag Archives: literature

Books Acquired Recently

Dentz, Shira. Sisyphusina. N.p.: PANK Books, 2019.

I am a fan of Dentz’s previous work, but hadn’t had a chance to buy her new poetry collection yet. A few weeks ago she and some other PANK authors gave a virtual reading, and I won a copy of her book for asking a question about it during the Q-and-A. It arrived a few days ago.

Miller, Brenda, and Suzanne Paola. Tell It Slant: Creating, Refining, and Publishing Creative Nonfiction. 3rd ed. New York: McGraw-Hill, 2019.

I’ve begun to write some creative nonfiction lately and feel the need for more formal direction in the genre. I’ve heard good things about Miller and Paola’s book, so decided to buy it for some of this direction.

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Books Acquired Recently

As I mentioned in a recent post, I panic-ordered a bunch of books when the pandemic hit to make sure that I don’t run out of reading material. The rest of them have come in.

Chavez, Felicia Rose, José Olivarez, and Willie Perdomo, eds. The BreakBeat Poets, Volume 4: LatiNext. Chicago: Haymarket Books, 2020.

I’m looking for a poetry anthology for my Latinx Literature course next semester, and this anthology is one of the candidates.

Freedman, Carl, ed. Conversations with Samuel R. Delany. Jackson: University Press of Mississippi, 2009.

This book came out just as I was working on research for my dissertation, which had a chapter on Delany, and I missed it because it wasn’t listed in scholarly databases yet. I’m not sure how I failed to come across it in the ensuing decade, but I put it on my to-buy list as soon as I encountered a reference to it recently.

Irby, Samantha. Wow, No Thank You. Essays. New York: Vintage Books, 2020.

I love Irby’s previous book, We Are Never Meeting in Real Life, and wanted to buy her new book right away. Due to the pandemic, a bookstore where she lives in Michigan ran a promotion in which you could order a copy and she would inscribe it for you however you wanted before the store mailed it. I had her inscribe mine “Happy pandemic! Queer of color solidarity!”

Jackson, Major, ed. The Best American Poetry 2019. New York: Scribner, 2019.

I don’t normally buy the volumes in The Best American Poetry series, but decided to buy this one as part of my poetry panic-buying. The Best American Poetry 1999 is the only other volume I have in the series (which has only been edited by a woman nine times in the series’s 32-year history, inexcusable) because I thought it would be fascinating to have a memento of what American poetry was like just before the new century, so maybe I’ll buy it every twenty years.

Xanathar’s Guide to Everything. Renton, WA: Wizards of the Coast, 2017.

I recently became part of an online Dungeons & Dragons campaign that is using some of the resources in this book, so I decided to buy a copy for myself.

 

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Books Acquired Recently: All Queer Edition

Dawn, Amber, and Justin Ducharm, eds. Hustling Verse: An Anthology of Sex Workers’ Poetry. Vancouver: Arsenal Pulp Press, 2019.

I’ve had this anthology on my to-buy list for a while and finally bought it now because I am desperate for all of the poetry I can get during this pandemic.

Halberstam, Jack. Trans*: A Quick and Quirky Account of Gender Variability. Berkeley: University of California Press, 2018.

Halberstam is an author whose work has been important for my own (especially The Queer Art of Failure) and for trans* (some people prefer the asterisk in this term, some don’t, the current usage keeps shifting; personally I don’t have a preference because it’s not my place to as a cis person to say which is proper, so I will use it here because Halberstam’s title does) studies in general. I am embarrassed that I missed this book when it first came out two years ago, but I just recently read Kathryn Bond Stockton’s Avidly Reads Making Out and it is cited there. When I read this citation I bought the book right away.

Piepzna-Samarasinha, Leah Lakshmi. Dirty River: A Queer Femme of Color Dreaming Her Way Home. Vancouver: Arsenal Pulp Press, 2015.

I was on the Arsenal Pulp website to buy Dawn and Ducharm’s anthology and saw an ad for Piepzna-Samarasinha’s book. It looked interesting, so I decided to buy it because I have been reading a lot of queer memoir lately.

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Books Acquired Recently: Quarantine Edition

I ordered a bunch of books recently because I am not sure how long the pandemic self-isolation situation will last or how long it will still be possible to acquire new books–my local Barnes & Noble closed even before New York’s shelter in place edict went into effect, and many independent bookstores are no longer shipping orders. Some of these books have arrived in the past few days.

Cruz, Cynthia. Other Musics: New Latina Poetry. Norman: University of Oklahoma Press, 2019.

I am teaching a Latinx Literature course in the fall and am still working on the syllabus. I bought Cruz’s anthology, along with Guzmán and Morales’s, to check out for possible use as one of my texts. I bought Gurba’s memoir and Rechy’s novel for the same reason.

Gurba, Myriam. Mean. Minneapolis: Coffee House Press, 2017.

Guzmán, Roy G., and Miguel M. Morales, eds. Pulse/Pulso: In Remembrance of Orlando. Richmond, VA: Damaged Goods Press, 2018.

Rechy, John. The Miraculous Day of Amalia Gómez. 1991. New York: Grove Press, 2001.

silva, ire’ne lara, and Dan Vera, eds. Imaniman: Poets Writing in the Anzaldúan Borderlands. San Francisco: Aunt Lute Books, 2016.

Poetry has been an essential tool of survival for me during the pandemic, and I have been trying to stockpile as much of it as possible, which is part of why four of these six books belong to the genre. I have been reading lots of Gloria Anzaldúa’s work over the past half-year, so now I am beginning to read other writers’ work about her and her ideas.

Smart, Christopher. A Selection of Poetry. Ed. David Wheeler. N.p.: CreateSpace, 2012.

I’ve always enjoyed the most famous part of Smart’s poem “Jubilate Agno” about his cat, Jeoffry, and decided that it would be nice to read the entire poem. This is apparently the only edition of his work currently in print.

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Sabbatical Productivity: March

I am on sabbatical this semester and have been keeping a list in my journal of the academic activities I engage in. This practice is partly for myself, so that I make sure I am using the time productively, and partly for my institution, which requires me to write a report about the sabbatical once it finishes. Here is a list of what I accomplished in March, generally in chronological order. Although March’s list is the same length as February’s (you can read about what I accomplished in February here), I did less than the previous two months because it’s been difficult to be productive due to the current pandemic. I feel like I am slowly getting back on track, though, so I have high hopes for April even though, as T.S. Eliot writes, it “is the cruellest [sic] month.”

1. Along with a colleague, chose four panelists for an MLA special session proposal on Dungeons & Dragons. All four accepted the invitation to be part of the proposal.

2. Sent rejections to the rest of the people who submitted abstracts for the Dungeons & Dragons panel.

3. Revised the three Mennonite/s Writing bibliographies throughout the month. They are here, along with the blog that lists all of the individual revisions.

4. Worked on revisions to my current book project.

5. Submitted a book proposal to the ideal publisher for my book project.

6. Wrote and submitted an abstract for an MLA panel on Samuel R. Delany.

7. Wrote a few senryu.

8. Corresponded with the rest of the planning committee for the Mennonite/s Writing IX conference that is scheduled for October (fingers crossed!) about which abstracts to accept.

9. Wrote a template for the Mennonite/s Writing IX acceptance email and sent out acceptances to around forty submitters.

10. Submitted five senryu to the 2020 Haiku Society of America Members’ Anthology and received notice about which one the editor accepted.

11. Along with a colleague, wrote and submitted the proposal for the Dungeons & Dragons panel.

12. Began writing a long poem about the pandemic.

13. Got asked to review a book of poetry by a journal.

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Books Acquired Recently

Choi, Franny. Soft Science: Poems. Farmington, ME: Alice James Books, 2019.

I read Choi’s previous full-length collection, Floating, Brilliant, Gone, last year and loved it, so when I heard about Soft Science I decided to buy it right away. The book was out of stock for a little while, so my copy just came today. I appreciate hugely workers who are still fulfilling book orders in these terrible times.

Miller, Evie Yoder. Shadows. Scruples on the Line: A Fictional Series Set During the American Civil War, Book I. Eugene, OR: Resource Publications, 2020.

I saw Miller read an excerpt from this novel last month at the Mennonite Arts Festival in Cincinnati and ordered it as soon as it came out a few weeks later.

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Books Acquired Recently: Post-Birthday Edition

I got some money as a gift for my birthday a few weeks ago and used it to buy some books that I’ve had on my wish list for a while. They arrived in the mail (which thankfully is still running) today. All three books are queer.

Castle, Terry. The Professor: A Sentimental Education. 2010. New York: HarperPerennial, 2011.

I read Castle’s book The Apparitional Lesbian during the first year of my M.A. (2004-5) and it taught me to see and do scholarship in new ways. It has continued to be an important text for me. I recently heard about The Professor, a collection of personal essays, and decided to buy it because of Castle’s previous influence on me.

Parker, Pat. The Complete Works of Pat Parker. Ed. Julie R. Enszer. Dover, FL: A Midsummer Night’s Press, 2016.

I’ve read some of Parker’s letters but not any of her poetry, and I know very little about her as a writer overall. I’m looking forward to reading more of her work. Queer person of color voices are especially necessary in times of societal upheaval like these.

Springgay, Stephanie, and Sarah E. Truman. Walking Methodologies in a More-than-Human World: WalkingLab. 2018. London: Routledge, 2019.

I’ve been interested in walking as a political act since I began reading about psychogeography about seven years ago. This book looks at walking through a queer, decolonial, affective lens, which is a much-needed approach. It will be an especially fascinating text to explore now while movement (though not walking in New York currently) is curtailed during the pandemic.

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