25 February 2008

One contest down . . .

Perugia Press released their winner for the 2008 poetry book contest, and it wasn't me. LOL! I did enter, though there were a few contests I entered in Fall 2007 for full-length book publication that really were probably shooting too high. The bulk of my manuscript was my thesis, and in my thesis defense in November, all three members of my panel told me that there were two really strong chapbooks in my thesis--maybe the start of a third. However, they didn't think that it was cohesive as a book. So, I'm certain that I'm now just waiting for the other rejections to roll in, too.

I do have a chapbook manuscript out . . . I'm hoping that it has a shot. It's all my sexier poems, I think. Some about marriage, some about the spaces outside of marriage. I'm thinking that the juxtaposition of domesticity and things that are decidedly NOT considered domestic acts will be interesting to some editor . . . somewhere.

An awful day at work . . . it's the week before spring break, and students just aren't reading or writing. I'm pulling teeth in every single class. I came home, cancelled plans, and took a nap. sigh.

23 February 2008

Something I just realized . . .

I mentioned chatting with some guy at Bateau Press's table at AWP, and I just realized that it was the editor & founder, James Grinwis. I didn't know . . . he writes some pretty interesting prose poems/flash fiction things. :D And he was very nice.

A rejection letter.

The Tusculum Review sent a rejection letter--though it did indicate that I could send again for the fall 2008 issue. Still, I was getting a little excited; they had my work for a while.

Paper Street is taking "Wading," an older poem . . . the poetry editor and founder, Arlan Hess, was an adjunct instructor at Robert Morris University at the same time as me years ago. I don't think she knew who I was when I applied--I now go by my married name. Regardless, it's a nice looking print journal that's getting some good work out there.

I also have a chapbook at the Boom Chapbook Contest through Bateau Magazine. I would not have even known about the contest, but for seeing Bateau at AWP this year. One guy at the table chatted a bit, and their first chapbook is lovely. Bateau, the journal, is lovely. Someplace that is definitely into putting work out in elegant books.

I need to get off my rear and apply for a few jobs--spent most of last night working on these awful online applications that colleges are now using for their hiring process. ugh. I also need to get a few more chapbook drafts out in the world--I've earmarked a bit of the old tax return to fund that.

Oh! And I applied to Bread Loaf. I rec'd my verification postcard yesterday. :D

22 February 2008

A bit of good poetry news!

My poems are going to be on wicked alice! I'm so excited about this . . . it's an online journal (the editor is Kristy Bowen, who is a fabulous poet in her own right. her book the fever almanac is lovely . . . and she has two new books coming out! holy crap!) Kristy is one of those younger women poets that i just love; knowing that she's picked three of my poems for wicked alice was thrilling.


The winter 2008 issue went up recently . . . I've not yet read it. This publication credit brings me a great deal of joy. She's publishing "Office Hour," a poem I wrote about a history instructor at my job, and "Pittsburgh Women Are Divisible by Three," which I'd not sent anywhere else, and "Swallows," one I wrote for my thesis right at the deadline. All three were written in Fall 2007, so it's nice to have new work going out and getting snapped up.

Sigh. I just need to start writing more often, so I can get a cohesive full-length book collection together.

Work Updates

So I need to spend a bit more time in here . . . update things and such. I need to start being more proactive about blogging. I'm in the process of applying for a few jobs in Washington state; the hubs and I are thinking that it might be good to be living somewhere we can see ourselves indefinitely before we buy a house and put down real roots of our own. So, on that front, I have a few applications and copies of my vita to send out this weekend. Cross your fingers for me--I'm hoping to at least get a call back.

Community college jobs are a bit different than those at four-year schools. Not only are the course loads usually a bit bigger (four to five courses per term vs. three to four courses per term), but the amount of administrative tasks that are delegated to faculty members are more time-consuming and more numerous at community colleges, in general. Not that teaching is easy on any level, but community colleges usually don't have the administrative staff that four-year schools have.

So, when a community college hires, they might be willing to hire someone who has only an MA or a MFA, but that person needs to have community-college teaching experience, knowledge and experience with course-level assessment (and sometimes program-level assessment), someone who can design and teach online classes, someone who can (and will) devote hours every semester to advising students--and not just those in their major, but also a large number of transient and undecided students who sometimes don't even belong in college yet. The potential faculty member also must be someone with experience selecting textbooks and designing a course curriculum on their own . . . and someone who's willing to serve on a variety of committees. This is all exhausting work--but in many cases, a candidate with this kind of experience in her bag of tricks is going to be serious competition to a candidate who has a PhD but no teaching experience beyond her teaching assistantship. But that's just my opinion.

And my hope, too. I've done all of these things and more for over five years at my current school. I'm hoping that the places I'm applying will see me as a real contender for these faculty positions, because there's very little they can throw at me that I haven't already had to do at JCC. I'm still going to cross my fingers, though . . . just in case.