Fuck Porgs – Journal 12/28/17

See title, that is all. I’ve talked about stupid side characters before, so let’s not go there. I was only reminded last night that porgs were a thing that existed and then I wanted to die all over again.

Let’s talk about going-ons around the studio. Christmas has come and gone! Which for me included a bunch of new camera equipment, calligraphy pen supplies, and plenty of inspiration to get cracking on a new poem that, for the time being, is being called “Yuletide Cyanide”. Cyanide is a trope I’ve had in my mind since about May and requires some further exploration, but it deals with intimate themes. Maybe “Cyanide” will be a poem of its own some time in the future when I finally understand myself what it is.

In Yuletide Cyanide, I expand on the meaning of the holiday season. The process so far in making this poem has been sporadic bits of writing stanzas, stuffing them in my pockets, and then writing another poem chunk that occurs stanzas later. So I have a bunch of really cool stanzas that are loosely connected by an internal canon I have set up for the piece. Which is something I’ve never really done before.

I do really good patchwork writing if I write something that is nearly identical to something I’ve written before. In the case of “Dumpster Livers” and “Tiers”, I wrote Tiers sometime later in a much more refined fashion, and decided that instead of having two poems covering the same exact things, I absorbed Dumpster Livers into the newer Tiers totally intact with no change to the meaning of the latter. It worked out!

Yet, I’ve never began a poem in this fashion before. Right now Yuletide Cyanide includes three scraps of paper, and two pages in two separate notebooks. It’s shaping up to be a good follow up to the season, and that leaves me lingering with feelings over the new year approaching.

Christmas was good to me, and then I woke up to an email popping on my phone this morning telling me that I was not the winner of the First-Published Book prize being offered by Copper Canyon Press. Disappointing, but I mean I didn’t expect to really win. Not after hearing that there were 800 manuscripts entered. All this does is reinforce the idea in me that no one is going to get me running besides me. So I’m going to.

This also means that I get to put Lithium Autumn into an e-book format and put it on the market that way. I can have my success any way I want to with this relative behemoth of a manuscript. I’m used to printing things at 10 pages of front and back, but this one is 50. E-book seems appropriate for a thing named after the 3rd element on the periodic table. Might take some time to put it up, though.

Now that the pressure over ISBN books has been lifted, I will be approaching bookstores in January to have them hold copies of Abandon Ship. Me making deals for me, instead of me submitted to be at the judgement of a bunch of people I’ll never meet. That’s my way of seeing the good in this rejection email.

Sure, I’ll be submitting manuscripts still. But not for a “first-published” prize anymore. I’m a little let down, of course, but obstacles only make me seek value more aggressively. Success is relative, I’ve come to learn. This isn’t a failure, in my eyes, just galvanization to do better.

Abandon Ship will see me walk the plank and dive for things rarer. Self-publishing entirely.

So that’s the take from Radio Reality City. 2018, and Year V in August will have seen much expanding.

Consume reality! Radio Reality City!

Thanks for tuning in!


Published by Jake Thomas Shaw

Concerned with memory, currency, and destiny, I strive to capture each one as they happen. Join me and consume reality! Radio Reality. City!

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