Christmas was lovely in my home and I’m hoping it was in yours. My son liked his gifts enough to forget about YouTube for awhile and that’s my standard for success. No small feat for my kid to be interested in things. Dude didn’t even want to go to the movies on his birthday.
But I’ve always disliked the limbo week of after Christmas until it’s time to resume normal life. My staying home this week with my son has been successful but disorienting. I’m eating Christmas candy waiting for my husband to bring me my coffee and listening to jazz music as I write this with epic amounts of laundry going. My boss hasn’t texted about work at all as a courtesy to me but of course I’m wondering what lies in wait for me Monday morning.
Anyway, I can’t leave one last BookRiot category hanging, which I very nearly did this year. I didn’t read two poetry books. I have plenty of poetry books but they are older than five years, or they printed much older stuff. Everything else I did two of. Maybe to make up for this and because it’s the last post of the decade I could toss on my reading specs for the year at the end.
A Collection of Poetry Published since 2014:
A Collection of Nightmares, Christina Sng
These poems are not your mother’s nature imagery. They are sci fi and horror stories written in the arresting form of poetry.
Poetry was my thing for awhile and when I could swim out of the angsty stuff inevitable for my age I put out some decent stuff. I had the bug back then: I wrote enough to want to write, to create a compulsion for myself, and it’s in all that work that the good stuff comes out. When your neurons have been trained to see the world that way that they start to give you good stuff. But it wasn’t this kind of poetry. I enjoyed how these were small fictions of their own, not just commentary on nature or a subject. Not that I don’t have mad love for Mary Oliver and how she does it, or Charles Bukowski even, but I liked this way of telling vivid and surprising tales in the form of poetry.
I participated in a poetry writing challenge this year and it was timely in opening my eyes to using poetry like this as well.
My father writes poetry and has poetry books and I have memories of him reading them and as I got older, sharing them with me. I loved my ninth grade poetry project where I got to select poems that meant something to me and share my own. One of my favorite memories as a kid was digging through his books with him to find something good that made me look super smart and like, in the know. Look like I had some really deep insight to being a ninth grader in a small rural high school in the nineties who was in love for the first time. And I had the coolest poetry books in my house.
But these poems were different, interesting, surprising. They were not the poems I cut my teeth on. I had no idea she was such a celebrated poet and I’m glad I found something new and I’m glad I found her. I could see myself writing like her to share my own plot bunnies.
I can’t ignore that this is the last Sunday of the decade, which calls for something in the way of a year in review. It might be a book or two short as I am engaged in vacation style binge reading and I write my blogs ahead of time, but you get the idea:
Books: 106 out of my goal of 80
Pages: approximately 30,000
Shortest: Ghost of a Chance by Angie Fox
Longest: Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi
ALL of BookRiot, even though I did two books for all of them save poetry.
I have found joy in two particular aspects: one, getting through books I have had forever but have not gotten to, whether they fit a category or not, and another in binge reading lighter things. Both of which I am going to talk about in more detail in my January posts.
But reading was awesome this year, with getting BookRiot done, as well as books I have been meaning to read, and books that gave me another world to live in when I needed it.
I didn’t do badly getting writing done, and with my one successful story publication, I consider it even a good year for that. I have my novel revised and I’m in the awful querying process which slowed down when the end of the year got busy which I intend to get going again when things are slower in January. And of course I plan on participation in my fourth year of 12 short stories. Because that keeps me going and thinking.