Thank you, Rose Tran, for nominating me to participate in the Writing Process Blog Tour.
1. What are you working on?
I’m working on a third collection, To Lift the Continent. So far, this collection of poetry focuses on women who love women, bringing someone you love into your lineage, and the history of my family when they came to America. It’s been a beautiful experience writing Continent. At first this collection was going to be called In Another Time, I Would Have Taken my Lover to Sicily, but as time went on I understood this title focused too much on loss, on the would have. “To Lift the Continent” means to do the opposite–to forget about “would have” and lift weights, build muscle, understand present motion. “To Lift the Continent” means to dance with present motion, to get stronger in this dance.
2. How does your work differ from others of its genre?
Here’s the thing: I choose not to process these similarities and differences. At least not at this time in my life. I am not certain I would like to elaborate on that right now, either, but thank you for including this question.
3. Why do you write what you do?
Because if I didn’t, I wouldn’t know what to do with the energy.
4. How does your writing process work?
My writing process is a lot like a garage sale: Items accumulated. Some make sense together and other’s don’t, but they’ve got to go. They’ve got to get out.
When I roam, I often notice abandoned space. When a structure becomes abandoned, so many things can happen to it because this structure is now open, vulnerable. People can vandalize its walls, make art in its walls, or even make a home for themselves in this place. When a situation in life opens us, we become this structure–we have the potential to invite in energy. And I believe that our bodies/beings remember this openness and invitation; I do believe we carry it with us like a map, even when its time for us to become less open and receptive. This, to me, is beautiful.
This is the deep seed of my writing process. This is what happens before the editing, the revising. This is the seed in the soil, about to burst open, understanding “This is what I will become.”