Sunday, June 16, 2013

Summer Residency | Days 7 & 8

I know, I know. Odd to still be playing catch up like this. I'm still writing about residency.


I'm home now, which makes it weirder, but I don't want to forget anything. And my email was hacked today, which was really fun to try to deal with when I was going to be driving home and away from my computer for ten hours.


Anyhoodles. It's okay now.

Day 7 was Thursday. Easy day. The day we don't have any workshop.

First thing Thursday I had a meeting with David Ulin, my nonfiction professor, and once again (this was a theme this residency, so I hope you're not tired of sunshine and rainbows yet), it was great. I wish I could introduce some drama here, but it just was. David, like Betsy, my fiction prof, was supportive and helpful and just plain rad. And there I sat, pinching myself that these wonderful writers wanted anything to do with me. It's just. GAH. It's good.

So I did that thing, some goofing off, eating whatever leftover veggies the food people recycled into a sad, sticky, tan colored "chili" for lunch, and then attended my homegirl Jo's graduate lecture on line breaks in poetry. As mad as I was at Jo for graduating a term before us, she kicked ass at her lecture, and I was so proud. She did an amazing job.

After lunch I was lucky enough to see Pulitzer Prize-winning author Hector Tobar speak about his book The Barbarian Nurseries (which I just finished and highly recommend) and his upcoming book on the Chilean miners. Really, really good stuff.

After all of the school, it was time for another long-awaited activity: author photos.

What are author photos, you ask? That's when me and m' peeps get dressed up and do our hair and take pictures in this beautiful place, hoping we get at least one we can use for a damn headshot if (when?) we get something published. Because the world has seen enough of our damn selfies.

It wasn't all serious business, though. There might have been some funny business.


A lot of funny business.


This picture is wonderful for so many reasons, one of which is that moments after it was taken (and can we pause for a moment to comment on my total lack of dancer form? Somehow I am the only one in the picture who manages not to hit the top of a jump at the right time.) I FELL RIGHT ON MY ASS ON THE GOLF COURSE WHILE EVERYONE ELSE REMAINED VERTICAL. Way to go, P. Way. To. Go.

I promptly spent the rest of the night drinking on the patio with Shannon and Faye and Dorothy, and then looking at stars over the desert. So, not a bad night.

Friday I saw Laila Lalami speak about representing other languages in English texts, and then I got to sit and meet with Hector Tobar and ask him to sign my book. More lunch. More culinary sadness in the form of mushy, overseasoned vegetables (I think on Friday they called it ratatouille) and then fiction workshop again. By Friday afternoon I started to feel a little angsty about the fact that this whole thing was coming to a close and there wasn't much I could do about that.

But I could do this:


Which, I will admit, didn't hurt. Neither did more pizza therapy.

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