I do think that it is clearer in its final form, and I also think clarity is a noble goal, but, when the edits came back I was a bit sad. To give you a sense of what I mean, here is the opening as I originally had it.
I do this often. Rather than silo-ing my intellectual activity, when I read an interesting bit of theory, be it literary criticism or theology, I think What would taking this seriously look like in a poem? How would I apply this in a classroom?
There’s a whole sub-genre of the internet dedicated to productivity and How To Tie Your Shoes Like the Pros!! kind of articles. Much of it is silly and wasteful or pedantic and unrealistic, but every once in a while, I’ll stumble across something, either from a friend, or on the web, or in an old book, and it will make a tangible difference in my workflow or in my life.
I've been all baited breath waiting to tell you: I've just finished the manuscript for my second book of poems!
Not to trumpet my preferences as to who released the “best records of 2018” but to remember what my life was like year by year, and to do that by tracing its soundtrack.
Today, however, right on my phone, someone appeared who claimed to be “allergic to Tolkien.”
I think Auden is wrong when he says attacking bad books is a waste of time.
Not only can Bronte render an archetypal Austenian “sketch,” she can toss them off at will, can toss them aside thereafter as if inconsequential.
I flew across the country and met some of the finest folks around, while eating well and learning deeply
Did I make these up?
I wondered a bit why we stored "the future" in the attic.
When the article is not overly skeptical, which it is most of the time, it is sometimes overly romantic...
I had heard, vaguely, that there was a parade, but saw no evidence thereof until I saw a fully nude man riding a bicycle.
I’ve just finished reading Ruth Goodman’s How to be a Victorian
I've never taken pictures of Italy till now.
Bless their hearts, my department has just asked me to give the annual Gates Reading at Seattle Pacific University, this year.
I've kept a list of the most important records for my life every year since 1992.
In a sense, it isn’t right to call the following errors “pet peeves,” since they are, well, errors. It’s not like they’re idiosyncratic to me; it’s not like they’re pets that I nurture, little annoyances I nurse for the pleasure of hating something. It’s just that these are the writing errors that I’m tired of pointing out. I’d like to move on to getting upset about other mistakes you make, to believe that your sins are unique to you instead of stamped out at some kind of demonic factory.
This coming 2017 is going to be a great year for poetry.
I was devastated by the Nice attacks. I don't know if it was because this has already been such a difficult year in world events, or because I was just there recently and so know the place, or because of their particularly gruesome nature, but I just can't find any words to say to myself or to anyone else about them.
Thankfully, we don't always have to say things.
I've been writing poems since I was 14 years old. At least, those are the earliest poems I've saved, or that I know anything about. It seems to me sometimes that I must have started earlier though.
When it isn’t summer, I always think of it as a magical time, but can’t always recall why. Sure, the weather is better, but does that really lend so much to my experiences? Last month we moved back to Seattle after 2 years away. It’s bliss. This is some of why.
I am taking a moment at the outset of summer to take stock of the year. Though the natural breaking point for the year is December, and though I usually do feel reflective then, as an academic, my years sheer cleanly along the school calendar’s lines, recently involving moves, new places of employ, and similar obvious points of development. So, what has happened just now?
My favorite part of last night’s American Literature lecture was talking about how Olaudah Equiano’s Interesting Narrative both reads us and revises earlier memoirs.
Can I just say that I love the peer-review process? Sure, it’s a bit cumbersome, and the timeline to publication rather long, but sometimes it’s enormously helpful.
A few years ago, I started writing children’s books about poets. My head is full of anecdotes from literary history that come up in lectures, and I started writing some of them down.
I’m presenting a paper at the Fall 2016 gathering of the North American Victorian Studies Association (NAVSA) hosted by the New College of Interdisciplinary Arts and Sciences at ASU on the theme of “Social Victorians.”