dealing with the devil in the middle of the road

The Cards We Keep, Others Now in Everett Library

The gorgeous Everett Mansion of Southern Vermont College (library wing is on the left).

The gorgeous Everett Mansion of Southern Vermont College (library wing is on the left).

Last month I dropped off four of my books at my alma mater, Southern Vermont College, for inclusion in the Everett Mansion Library. The mansion houses the classrooms, admin offices, theater, and library for the SVC campus, and I'm really excited about having my work placed there. The library is a beautiful corner of the mansion with brightly lit reading rooms, a large fireplace, and now four of my own books, including:

  • The Cards We Keep (2013, short fiction)
  • Dealing with the Devil in the Middle of the Road (2012, poetry)
  • Lantern Lit, Vol. 1 - The Darkest Bomb (2014, poetry)
  • Maybe a Bird Will Sing (2009, poetry)

If you happen to be in southern Vermont - Bennington specifically - feel free to drop int! The campus has amazing views of Bennington and the surrounding area. It's worth checking out!

Readings Past and Yet to Come

I don’t read my work in public often (never got comfortable with it) and I recently tried to rectify that by reading at a cool little open mic where author Bud Smith revealed an excerpt from his upcoming novel, F-250. The reading took place at a bar in the Bronx called An Beal Bocht (Gaelic for “The Poor Mouth”) and it was the first time I read in front of a crowd in, what…two, three years? Something like that, so it was a fun personal challenge to shake off the rust and get up there. I was more nervous than I’d like to admit, and like every other reading I’ve ever done, I needed 6-7 beers in order to not shake like a set of wind-up chattering teeth up in front of the mic. I read two older pieces from around 2009; one, “Norway,” is about strippers named after European nations and how swimming naked in the moonlight is often the best way to put them in the past; and the second, “Darkness Within the Dark,” comes from one of my many bouts with Taoism, an on-again/off-again passion of mine. Both poems are also found in my collection Dealing With the Devil in the Middle of the Road. Thankfully it went well and I got some encouraging feedback. I'm grateful for host Erin Lynn for putting the open mic together each month, and I definitely plan to attend again. If you’re in the NYC area on August 13 around 7:30, you should swing by An Beal Bocht and listen in.

I’m also doing a reading on Saturday, October 4 at Jimmy’s No. 23 (in the back room, plenty of seating) where I’ll be featured along with a number of other authors from the Too Much anthology, which is due out this summer. The cover here looks amazing, doesn’t it? I’ll have more details about that reading soon, but I’ll probably read from my piece in the anthology, which is full of stories of alcoholic, sexual, and narcotic excess. Pretty apt topic considering I'll likely need a double dose of liquid courage to read in front of a crowd that large. Anyway, I hope you can make it!

*** Update: I may be doing a reading in the southern New Jersey / Philadelphia area in December as well to promote a new book of mine. Details TBA. ***

Work to a Calm #7 - Two Poems

Two of my poems, "Flood" and "Nothing and You," now appear in Issue 7 of Work to a Calma striking little literary journal that is carving a nice home for itself online. If you haven't heard of it, please do check it out; it will be worth your while. Editor Nastia Lenkova has a keen eye for quality work, and I'm not just saying that because I've had a few of my own pieces in there over the years. If you like what you see there, consider my New & Selected collection of poetry, Dealing With the Devil in the Middle of the Road. The poems of mine that now appear in Work to a Calm were written during the same period as this book, and I still have signed copies available. You can also find links to purchase the book online in the Books section above. Thanks to Nastia for selecting my work, and thanks to you for reading!