Last week the dazzling poet Cynthia Manick, who I met in a Brooklyn Poets manuscript workshop run by leighstein, asked me if I wanted to participate in this blog tour making its way around the Internet. I’m a little suspect of everything and everyone, can be a little but of a… hater? A little bit stand-offish? I’m not proud of it, It’s just my nature. Call it where I come from, living in the big city, some shyness. This is especially true of workshops. Once I trust someone, however, I hold on for dear life. That’s the case with Cynthia: she was a generous and thoughtful reader, never quick to judge but still incisive, and (of the utmost importance when reading someone else’s work) she took the time to think about the work from the poet’s perspective. She didn’t just insert herself. Couple that with her own poetry—vigorous & effervescent & haltingly gorgeous—and you have got one of the powerhouses of contemporary poetry.
I was honored that she asked me to participate. And a little gassy. So here goes:
1) What are you working on?
Mostly I’m working on getting laid, which hasn’t really happened in awhile, and being in a relationship, which almost never happens for me, but also sometimes poetry. This summer I have some office space in Greenpoint with some talented cuties and I’m working on finishing my full manuscript by August.
2) How does your work differ from others’ work in the same genre?
I’m not sure, but I think one of the hallmarks of my stuff is that it’s based on my literal voice, as in the one that comes out of my mouth, as in the one that has embarrassed me my whole life and used to get me made fun of daily. The thing that used to cause me so much shame is now my favorite thing about myself, and writing poetry for my voice helped me feel that way.
3) Why do you write what you do?
4) How does your writing process work?
Coffe Tea Diet Pepsi 4 Gallons of Water and Pee Break Pee Break Pee Break. I also talk into the voice memo thing on my phone all the time, and write the transcripts when I get to my “office.”
I’m passing the torch onto Ruby Brunton, who I met in Ariana Reines’s Ancient Evenings series last autumn. I can’t wait to see what she has to say!
If you don’t know Teebs, you’re about to. Eric and I sat down with one of the hardest working and most genuinely love-filled poets in America, who just so happens to live in Bushwick, Tommy Pico. W…
The completely awesome Sean H Doyle and Eric Nelson interviewed me for the “Almost Live at Mellow Pages” podcast interview series (and wrote a totally fucking blushworthy intro), & we talk about, amongst other things, how Tumblr helped me be a better poet. Have a listen—I sound like a bunny on crack and it’s awesome.
I have three poems in the new issue of Ocho, a queer arts mag—check it out here, replete with headshots: http://t.co/pD2jZL69aM :-) :-) :-)
Hey friends, I just finished giving my site a major facelift with upcoming and past readings, recently published works, videos, and media mentions. I think it looks cute, how bout you?!?
So, what do you do? Is a thing people ask
at parties and bars and speed dating
in New York. Whenever I go home to California,
my whole reservation asks: soooo, what are you
doing? Which means, what’s more important
than being here with your family and your people
in the valley we’ve lived in for thousands
of years? Which, heavy. I have people
out here too, who make here feel like home.
It sucks being a sometimes person, some times
here and some times there— the mind like arthritis but really
I’m lucky. Some people never get people. Some
people have to make them up, and get locked away
for talking to them. I’ve never been locked up
but I did come out as bisexual, and was afraid
of my own voice once for 28 years. But now,
karaoke. And the whole block knows when I stub
my toe. It sounds like this: uuuuugggggghhhhhh
"I have this bad date that gets me thinking: if you want to develop a real relationship in the city, I think it’s important to be in the path of that person, regularly, as a matter of course. You have to share a place, a neighborhood, or work or school or a commute or a coffee shop or a bar or scene. Something so the artifice of dating doesn’t overwhelm the function." This month’s “Banal and Profane” column comes to us from writer Tommy Pico.
Hey friends, Lambda Literary just published this thing I wrote for their column “The Banal & The Profane” about a week in my life. Check it out!!!
hey friends n strangers,
i finished my zine with text by me and drawings by THE Dutchesse Crystal
so if you’d like a copy just email me your address and i’ll gladly send you one. if we met like once/never and you feel weird asking me for it over email, don’t feel weird. i often tell people i barely know that they were in my dreams. you’re in good company.
Kayla Morse is one of my favorite living poets and her zine is really really really really really good. SO get one while you can, peeps.
Tomorrow I’ll be tabling at the Brooklyn Zine Fest for Birdsong, hawking some mighty fine self-published writing and art, and promoting our Kickstarter campaign to make a “best of” magazine. I’ll be sitting alongside the dashing Adam J. Kurtz, to whom I owe one million cookies (I forgot to reserve a table this year and he offered me space at his).
Come say hi and rifle through my zines and tell me I look pretty! That sounds like a joke and it kind of is.
Five years ago I started a zine and art collective called “birdsong.” I wanted there to be a home for the work that was being made in my community of writers, artists, and musicians. Today I launched a kickstarter campaign to fund a “best of Birdsong” five year anniversary magazine— I am so excited, nervous, proud, hungry, etc. So please visit the page and pledge and share it with everyone! Love you. Oh and watch the video b/c I am so proud of myself for learning imovie these past couple of weeks!
I resisted the urge to reblog each and every version of the “jennifer lawrence falling” gif and instead set up my editing wall in the new apartment. Everything is finally settled
Asked by logpoes
Cool, just use the ask thing or “fanmail” to send me yr snail mail address (I won’t make it public, promise!) or email me heyteebs at gmail and I’ll drop it in the post asap. No fuss, no muss, no money. This goes for everybody!
Makin a new batch of birdsong 18 zines! Art&Writing from the Birdsong Collective— don’t forget to let me know if you want one (for free!)