Archive | August, 2013

Special Prize if you Find the Cure Reference in this Post

28 Aug

I started a new project that requires absolutely no creative output on my term but fills my need to be doing something “interesting” and “project-y”

I’m listening to all the music on my ipod in album order.

Feel free to unfollow this blog. I am, in fact, that boring.

But before you do, here’s the thing. I’ve been reading this Culture Shock: America book (hopefully to put together this poetry project) and it’s made me incredibly self-conscious about my stuff. And I don’t even have a lot of stuff.

I have a tiny one bedroom apartment nicknamed The Bunker. It’s small and cozy and cluttered and since it’s on the ground floor I  never open the blinds (nosy people live in Brooklyn) and my poor toothless cat never gets to see natural light.

It’s filled with books mostly, the ones that belong to us are haphazardly puddling from the shelves (like too much water in too small a glass) and the ones that belong to the library are piled on the floor, possibly high enough to offer shelter should The Bunker become inhospitable.

But still not more books than other people I know. And I don’t have that many dvds.

But what I do have is a lot of cds. Yes, I still own cds. And I own cds cause I was (and am) a late adopter to technology. The ipod classic came out in 2001. I got my first one a DECADE later.

For ten years, I was the girl in Brooklyn walking around with a cd player. Don’t think I didn’t see you laughing.

So I finally broke down and got one because I walk pretty far to work and replaying the same cd over and over was getting old. And I put everything on it.

Everything!

Ev-e-ry-thing

I took stacks and stacks of cds and burned like…..a fire in cairo.

I put on stuff I never listened to – stuff that belong to my husband. Stuff and stuff and stuff. And then I wound up listening to the same 10 artist over and over and over again.

Sigh.

Hence my project. I’m going to listen to everything on my ipod in order. I figure, since the damn thing is almost full, I’ll be occupied until 2015.

That said, I’m allowing for occasional deviations, i.e. “I desperately need to hear that Cure song right now, where is it???? Ahhhh there it is.” *hums along*

But otherwise, the great makers of the english alphabet will decide my musical accompaniment.

I started on August 16th and I’m almost done with the A’s.

Things I’ve learned so far:

  • Ariel Ballet by Harry Nielson is a really great album. And there’s more to it then “Everybody’s Talkin.'”
  • I don’t have nearly enough Eric Satie in my life.
  • Aha Shake Heartbreak by the Kings of Leon is still better than anything they’ve done since.
  • As much as I love Paul McCartney, he’s totally punchable. It’s going to a long haul with this guy. There’s only such much “Whoooo” and “Bobbity boo boo” a human can take.
  • American Gangster by Jay-Z is really good. Really. No, really!
  • Amnesiac by Radiohead gave me some sort of auditory seizure and that needs to come off ASAP.

And most of all I got to listen to these guys again:

This is the Panaroma Jazz Band playing at the Spotted Cat on Frenchman Street. I saw them on one of my many trips to New Orleans. As I’ve mentioned before my memory is utter rubbish but I think it was the last trip, in 2011. They were even better than this video makes them seem and we bought the one cd they had at the time, “Another Hot Night in February.” They’ve since recorded more.

And the great thing about this project is that when I travel, especially down south, my favorite thing to do is collect music. I can’t wait to get up to Clay Canfield and the Howling Brothers (both from Nashville).

So yeah, music project. I’ve got something like 100 Mozart albums on here. By mid 2014, I’ll look just like this:

Peace, love and Starbursts,

Ally

Marble Soul

15 Aug

Hi all.

I’m so happy to announce that Medulla Review is alive and kicking again! They used to have whole issues but now have gone for a more come-and-get-it chow time approach. I missed them while they were gone and I’m so glad they’re back and that I have a story up right now. Be sure to check out the poetry and photography too. Really great stuff.  Writer friends, send them some work.

The story is called Marble Soul and truth be told it took me a little while to find a home for this one so I’m doubly excited about the news. It’s about a young girl in an oppressive society who sells parts of her soul at the Night Market in exchange for a certain… ahem…. type of sensation.

Here’s how it begins:

“I hope it was worth it,” the Vicar of Oxley said but Azra didn’t look up. If she had, in his eyes would be all that righteous fire, all her guilt. Instead, she strapped on bravery, masked the truth, and held as still as possible.

“You used a lifetime of Purity. A lifetime Azra, before your true Bedding. And if that weren’t bad enough,” he reached into the drawer in front of him, “this is all that’s left of your Soul.” It clicked when he placed it on the desk and rumbled as it rolled towards her. She caught it just before it went off the edge. Azra flinched expecting it to be hot as if it would burn with her own transgressions but it was smooth and cool to the touch. It was smaller now, no bigger than a marble, but it still shone a sun dappled sort of gold as it had the day it was given to her, not long after her Acceptance. It was strange to hold it again, in her palm, as strange as it would be to hold your own laughter or heartache. It fluttered against her skin, seemingly searching for a way back inside.

 

I HATE THIS BOOK WITH THE BURNING STENCH OF A GARBAGE FIRE

14 Aug

DISCLAIMER: (Everything I’m going to say here is much better said here by Chuck Wendig (Hey at least I’m honest.))

I’m revising.

Have I mentioned that I’m revising? Cause I am. And by revising, I mean, I’m pulling the broken spine out of a disgruntled hemorrhoid riddled gorilla and re-assembling it with legos. While he’s sleeping.

I’ve been ACTIVELY changing things since March. My plan (ha! what’s a plan?) was to be done by June. I was going to spend my summer writing nothing but poetry for a new chapbook tentatively entitled “How to Be An American” or “How to Spot and American” or something about Americans.

It was based on the amazing things I’ve found in this book:

Can you see how much fun that would have been?

Cause I can.

Except here it is August bloody 14th and i’m still only half way though the revision. And I have a novella I want to finish and short stories and that chapbook and and and and and (this is the part where I get all hyperventilate-y)

And the hardest part with all this spine ripping is that I really can’t tell if what I’m changing is making it better or worse cause it’s just one big patchwork quilt from hell at this point. Thank god for beta readers right? If I sell this thing I’ll have to give them half my royalties.

So aside from my complaining, which let’s be honest is the whole point of a blog, what I wanted to share was  this piece by Chuck Wendig because basically the things that go through his brain when he’s editing is what goes through my brain. Also he’s much funnier than me.

Be good kids.

I’m gonna go chew my fingers to bloody nubs.

Okay bye.

*laugh/sob/laugh/sob*

Doctor, Doctor, Doctor

5 Aug

Hi.

So it’s been awhile since I’ve posted anything on here because I’ve been mired in revisions on my current WIP but I wanted to come out of my dank dark cave to share a few things.

There have been some new reviews of Lizzy popping up online. I posted them here but here’s a link to the newest from Pen and Muse.

P&M is a really great resource for writers and I was so excited when they agreed to take my piece on rejection which as I said when I gave it to them, was the most honest thing I’ve ever written about the submission experience for me. As for Lizzy they said some really great things like this:

Another thing I really liked about this novel is that Lizzy is a strong female protagonist. There’s nothing worse than opening a novel and starting to read it, only to find that the main female character is dependent on a male for happiness, or afraid to take action, etc. But this isn’t the case with Lizzy!

Also I have a new poem, Pick-pocketed by the Alchemist up at Electric Windmill Press so many thanks to Brian, the editor.

And in other more interesting non-Ally related news, we have a new Doctor!

Yes, in case you weren’t sure, I am THAT much of a nerd. As so eloquently described by the folks on twitter:

While I’m very excited about Peter, I’m still sad about Matt but have vowed to NOT repeat the theatrics from the David to Matt transition.

I vow to keep the tissue usage to a rational amount. 20 sheets max.

But before we move on, we’ve got a little time left with Matt – the sure-to-be-amazing 50th anniversary show and a Christmas special – and I just wanted to share this brilliant moment from his run, the moment in which I looked at Matt and didn’t say, I miss David.

The moment when I said, “Okay. That’s my Doctor.”

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