Where do I begin? How do I explain what has transpired in these two beautiful, intense weeks? Ireland has been a dream destination for what seemed like years, and my MFA program gave me the opportunity to not only travel there, but also to work with brilliant Irish writers and mentors.
I flew into bustling Dublin with my friend Jaclyn and we promptly rented a car to drive to Cork. Here’s where our whirlwind weekend began- Blarney to Cork, Galway to the Cliffs of Moher, Belfast to Giant’s Causeway, and at last to Dublin, where we studied at Trinity College for two weeks and took a day to trip to Howth. There were way too many pints between classes, friends made, and laughs shared to count, but here are a few snapshots that help frame those wonderful memories:
Cliffs of Moher
Already counting down until the next residency! But for now, the work of practicum begins.
Almost a year ago, I was presented with the opportunity to co-curate the Madwomen in the Attic‘s monthly reading series here in Pittsburgh, PA.
Since then, being a part of MadFridays has been nothing short of an adventure on its own; it has been filled with talented writers and readers, a captivated and supportive audience, and a community of friends.
Our last reading of the season took place May 11th with a special spotlight on the Madwomen Mentorship program and featured talented mentees: Joy, Alexandra, Rachel, and Sally. Mentors Kayla, Emily, Daniela, Wendy, and our fearless leader Jan are also pictured.
Thank you to all for a wonderful 2017-2018 season! We’ll see you in September.
Special thanks to my sidekick Laurin for all her work, all the open mic readers and attendees over the past year, and to Delanie’s Coffee for letting us use their space.
“Gauging Time” published in Fearsome Critters, a new millennial arts journal!
Massive thanks to the editors for selecting my work and to my talented friend Korbin on the layout!
Not many people know this, but I started graduate school for my MFA in January.
I am still working full time, but I decided that this goal was one I seriously wanted to accomplish for myself and to push myself academically and personally, to become a better writer.
My motto for this new year has been to just go for it, and that’s what I am doing. The residency proved to me that I made the right decision. Never in my life did I connect so quickly to my peers and mentors. I felt like even though I only met these people ten days ago, it felt like we had been friends for a lifetime! I was surrounded by the most brilliant writers, and the energy was contagious. All in all, it was the single most overwhelming (but in the best way) thing I had ever experienced.
And now, the real work of practicum begins. For those of you who are or have previously been in grad school, especially a low residency program, what advice would you give?
Over the moon to announce that my new chapbook manuscript has been accepted for publication and will be forthcoming from Dancing Girl Press in August 2018! I really can’t believe I’ll soon have a second book in the world.
I’ll keep you guys posted as we move through the process.
Hoping everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday! Right now, I’m grateful for the persistence of this dream and all the rejections that brought me to this moment. Never, ever give up on what you love.
How is it November?! Life has been moving at a rapid pace for me, but I took some time to slow down and talk about some things that are important to me. Check out my interview below about travel, women writers, and my chapbook, Next to Everything that is Breakable at Speaking of Marvels.
Truly grateful for this feature, and wishing everyone a Happy Thanksgiving holiday!