Gemini: A zodiacal constellation in the northern hemisphere between Taurus and Cancer on the ecliptic.
With my moon in Gemini I want at least two of everything.
With my sun in Virgo "There was too much for one person to do."
You can also find me at & on Twitter @trippweavepoet

Thursday, February 25, 2010

NEA Answers that Helped me through a Dark Night

So, remember all those questions I had about applying for the NEA grant a couple of posts ago?

I sent my list of questions to their help email:
Below are my q&a, the woman at NEA was very helpful and I went back and forth with her a few times. I submitted on Feb 5th and have received the confirmation #'s I have to go in and check, and I do hope I got it right. I understand that a chapbook counts for 16 pages and you need 20.

Questions & Answers:

1) On the application page it is stated NOT to put a title, then there is space to write the project and it says to do this in 2 to 3 sentences. I find it difficult to write in three sentences about my project. What is most important to focus on in writing this statement about the work I plan to do?

1. The project description is for NEA purposes only, and will not be weighed in the judging of your application. (The only thing the judging panel sees is your manuscript, the rest of the app is for Staff purposes.) You can say something like: “I will be working on my 3rd collection of poetry which focuses on Irish Heritage. I will use the fellowship money to help fund a research trip to Ireland.”

2) I see in places where a budget is required, but it is not in the How to Prepare and Submit an Application. 3) Where do I put in the amount of grant money I am requesting and any required budget? It is not clear.

2./3. Where do you see budget information? There is no budget for the Fellowship application, it’s possible you’re looking in the wrong place. All Fellowships are for 25k.

4) Questions about the summary publication list:

1) I have a chapbook and it is my first listing. I understand this will count for 16 pages and I only need to account for up to 20, but I have many publications, so is it to my advantage to put more of my publications than the 20?

2) What if I do not have a phone number for the journal? Many do not list phone numbers.

3) If I've been published in the same journal two times, in two separate issues, is it okay to combine these in the same box?

4) What if I only have the information that is on the journal, such as Fall 2006 or Spring 2008? I've tried to look up the journals by ISBN at the Chamber of Commerce but they are not showing up. Is it okay to have what is on the journal and not the exact month?

4.1 You only need to list the minimum. If you are unsure about the validity of some of the publishing companies however, you should include a few extra publications on the list. 25 should be sufficient.

4.2 Just provide the journal’s name, address, web url, etc.

4.3 Please list every poem separately.

4.4 “Spring”, “Fall” etc. is fine.

5) For online publications, do I have to put the website address, or the link to my poem? Some I can get the editors address and phone number, but some I cannot. How crucial is this?

4.5 Web poems should have the name, url of the journal, and specific url to the poem.

I hope this might be helpful to any of you applying.

Friday, February 5, 2010

Night of the Tiger & Robert Frost Interlude Visitations

Tonight in the heart of darkness where there is overwhelm for this gemini moon, I wonder how I will ever accomplish whatever it is I am here for.

A meditation on life. I want inspiration, a whistle while I work, a life that knows joy is created from inside. But do I have it? Sometimes. Other times I wilt like lettuce in the sun.

In French cooking lettuce is sauteed with grapes and severed as a vegetable, but of course. I made it once and it turned my sight.

Who has time to write blogs? There is cooking to do. Reading to read. Life to live. Poems, stories & essays to write.

A Interlude Visitation:
Gathering like people together to share their stories imbues a wordless strength, what Robert Frost called in another context, “A clarification of life—not necessarily a great clarification, such as sects and cults are founded on, but a momentary stay against confusion.” Limbic regulation in a group can restore balance to its members—love is and will always be the best insurance against despair for which street drugs are the obvious antidote.

Perhaps a blog is a way to clarify. A place to gather. A place to fight back confusion. Can we have limbic regulation through a blog? We are certainly trying.

One of the problems with the internet, on the other hand, is only talking to people with the same views. Becoming more polarized.

What is this Libra balance act to see two sides? Confusion is one of the greatest sources of creativity. My limbic system is confused as to why I have two blogs and how will I ever have time for them.

I should be preparing for the Tiger of the Chinese New Year coming soon. Really. That is what I need to do.

And Again, A Interlude Visitation:
Frost wrote that a poem “Begins as a lump in the throat, a sense of wrong, a homesickness, a love sickness. It is never a thought to begin with.”

Everything boils down to homesickness, but I'll go into that another night. Here we sit on the verge of another year, the Tiger will enter our life and we have much to learn.

Thank you Robert Frost, it is good to hear your voice. I wait for the Tiger.