The odds and ends of being an artist

This has been a busy week! (And as I’m writing this I feel I’m writing a short, not as amazing “One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich”). I’ve been asked before, sometimes, that as an artist, what is it that you do?

Sometimes I think when you tell people you are an artist people automatically envision romantic Paris-wine dreams . Not so much.

The reality is that like most people I work (as a tutor and an English instructor) and manage to find time for my art usually at the expense of my house hold choirs.books

So for those who are wondering, here is a sample of my week:

First I received an email that my poem “We Is” is going to be published in July in torrid magazine. It was a nice email (though a pang of sadness as I couldn’t call the first person I always do) especially because I have not been submitting anything as of late (too too busy).

Then, I spent the first part of the week, furiously getting a portfolio together for a grant program for the Illinois Art Council. It’s a long shot. They announced over 15,000 in grants. However, the announcement came with a 3 day turn around (talk about pressure.) I will keep you updated. Also if you live in Illinois check out the Art Council page for more programs.

Afterwards, I had a Skype date cue the fancy music, first date jitters and a wine with a fancy illustrator friend of mine,  Riki,check out her work) to discuss working on a children’s book (Lots of exciting info to be coming!)

The rest of the week was a hodgepodge of emailing about guest blogs, contacting a graphic artist about a graphic novel, talking to my best friend Ashy about doing a collaborative art show and a few other art odds and end on the promotion side.

Notice no writing 😦

But life goes on doesn’t it? How was your week as an artist?




Today is the first page….

Today is the first page of a 365 page novel. Make it good!

And since I’m feeling rather adventurous for the new year, I thought I’d reveal the cover art for my ebook of plays! The work was from my best friend, a painter and all-round awesome artist, Ashley Hunt, who now lives out in Buffalo.

final I have just a bit more work on my book (ok really I’m just waiting a few weeks to calm my nerves) but it should be up within a few weeks. And yes, I’m sure I’ll be obnoxious with shooting from the rooftops about it.

Here’s to 2014 being the year you write a best seller with your life.

A quick exciting announcement

Sorry to make this quick, but as I moved to a new house, not yet equipped with the internet, I have to make my blog post on my lunch break.

The Prairieland Theatre Company will present “Prairie Playwrights: Four Plays Three Authors at 7 p.m. on Friday, May 31 and Saturday, June 1 and at 2 p.m. on Sunday, June 2 at the Farmhouse Banquet & Event Center in Delavan.

This will include a piece of mine. I’ll have more information to follow!  I’m so honored to be included in this.

Welp, time for me to eat. I’ll post more information soon.


Writing, the ups and downs of finishing a novel…..

Maybe it's why  we write tooI think this is why we write as well, to touch other people, to reach out from the void and scream, I am not alone. I am here. I feel what you feel. I see what you see. We are not always, sometimes, we is.

That being said, it’s time for a rant….

Have you ever worked on a project so long that you just hated it? That’s how I’m starting to feel with my novella.

It all started 3 years ago, when an artist friend of mine wanted to do a graphic novel with me. Young, and naïve, I full heartedly agreed though my boyfriend (now ex) warned me that he might have ulterior motives.

I spent all summer, working a crappy job at a water tower theme park  (I sold tickets and gave a tour up an elevator that was frequently break), writing during the dead times until I had banged out a sort of script for the graphic novel.

Then I waited…for anything, some sign of him working on the project. I complained. He drew a view mock-ups, but eventually he complained that I wasn’t dedicated.

In reality, I told him we would never have a future (romantically) together, and thus he scraped the project.

For the next year, I let it sit. My world was in chaos and I wasn’t about to sit and retool a 100 page script thing.

And then one day I realized I wanted this idea to see the light of day.

But I hate it.

It isn’t yet what I envisioned.  I keep trying to rework it, but it isn’t yet what I want. I’m not sure it will ever be.

Part of me wants to scrap it and walk away, but still part of me is in love with it.

Maybe it’s because I don’t usually work in the genre or maybe its because I envisioned it in pictures.

Maybe it’s not any good.

But I know I’m going to just keep going, no matter how much I complain.

I guess in the end, It might not be perfect but it’s my baby and I need to give it the life it deserves.

Here’s a short excerpt:

Chapter 1

The arching skyline rose, casting a shadow over Santana Cooke, blocking the little light left from the rising night’s sun. The faux-goth architecture, arches and ornamentation, mated into awkward, menacing angles, dangling precariously over her head, threatening to crash down, a fierce hellfire of fused limestone and metal. Goblins, angels and gargoyles, their cameras tucked away, eyes stone-cold, stared down at her, fleetingly stealing glances of life and soul. Santana shivered, pulling her black leather jacket tightly around her Guns N’ Roses T-shirt.

She could feel the world on her, burning, the sun on a summer day.


She’d lay for hours in her yard, listening to her mother’s humming through the kitchen windows, reaching for the clouds as the laundry hung over-head, waltzing back then forth with the breeze until her father returned home from work, a candy bar in his pocket for her to sneak before dinner.  Anything was possible then.

Santana shuttered at how quickly things changed.

Turning down a side alley, she paused, the pulse of the city lost in the cobblestone. No one noticed her in the herds of people muddling along to chew their cud, find a lover, or jump off a bridge. Thoughts collected, she ran on until the building Tek described came into view.

He better not be lying. I paid a pretty penny for this information.