friday roundup: the VIDA count, Cerise Press, and my new front door

Good morning, Reader. Another week comes to a close. Which reminds me of my favorite line from Season 1 of Downton Abbey: “What is a weekend?” That’s the Dowager Countess of Grantham asking. Unlike at Downton Abbey, at our house a weekend is a couple of days to run around like farmyard fowl to basketball games, birthday parties, and various stores and shops. Our weekends are busier than our weeks — so, before the madness begins, let’s get on to the roundup:

the VIDA count  VIDA has just come out with their 2011 count that looks at the percentage of women vs. men are published and reviewed in leading journals. It’s no surprise to anyone that the gals are underrepresented. There are probably 100 reasons for this disparity. My experience reading for Weave Magazine is that  men submit a higher proportion of poems. This makes total sense to me: Women are busy running households and raising children. Women tend to put the needs of others in front of their own needs. I realize I’m generalizing here, and that plenty of men run households and raise children these days. Still, I want to say: Send your work out ladies! Let the laundry pile up! Go ahead, run out of toilet paper! Serve popcorn for dinner! Whatever it takes! And also, I want to say that I couldn’t disagree more with Nobel Laureate V.S. Naipaul, who said:

And inevitably for a woman, she is not a complete master of a house, so that comes over in her writing, too.

As I said once to a fellow poet that suggested changes to one of my poems “to make it post-feminist”: My writing will be post-feminist when the world is post-feminist. We’re not there yet.

Cerise Press   I spent a while yesterday afternoon with Cerise Press, a beautiful (beautiful!) online journal of literature, arts, and culture. There is a lot of good stuff here, Reader. I especially enjoyed Chloe Garcia Roberts’ translations of Li Shangyin. Do yourself a favor and go read Untitled (to see each other…). There’s also an excellent review of Paris Portraits: Stories of Picasso, Matisse, Gertrude Stein, and Their Circle by Harriet Lane Levy. My fellow writer and classmate Kathleen Brewin Lewis, wrote the review. Kathleen is also the editor of a new journal: Flycatcher: a journal of native imagination.

my new front door  This has nothing to do with poetry, but my sense of relief is so great, I can’t help but share it. After offering on two houses and getting outbid on both, Husband and I finally did the outbidding. Our new abode is tiny (1100 square feet) but lovely, and is only a couple of blocks away from our rental. Will I have a room of my own for writing? Sadly, no. But I will have a three-foot stretch of wall of my own, and really, that’s all I need. I’m so glad all the time I spent house-hunting will pour back into the “writing time” column… at least until it’s time to pack up and move — but I’ll think about that when the time comes.

Reader, have a lovely weekend.

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