Archive for August, 2008
Got up at four am and kept going. Worked for quite a bit and then embarked on a trip to Buffalo State (my alma mater) to see Lisa Forrest and throw my hat in the ring for the Rooftop Poetry Club open reading. I was going to make a podcast out of it (which I was on the fence about doing), but Lisa decided not to make it an official event and restricted podcasting and/or professional photography. We had a phenomenal time in spite of the media coverage (or perhaps because of the lack of it).
I read three poems and the other six or seven people out of twelve read two or three as well. It was just good therapy. I’m not good with the sad stuff or the romantic stuff, but I read it anyway and it went well. At the close of the event at the E.H. Butler Library, Lisa announced that there wouldn’t be another open reading for poets until November. Doesn’t that just figure that once I get back on the horse, Buff State is stupid enough to start phasing out one of the best ideas they’ve had in a century. There ought to be a petition to keep it monthly. I’m talking to you, Just Buffalo. If it’s a matter of funding, someone should throw some money Lisa’s way. It’s a brilliant concept with a large umbrella of talented writers and it would be a genuine shame to see such a wonderful venue go under because of funding, grants, exposure and so on and so forth. This isn’t my fight, so I’m begging anyone else to take up the cause. Good luck. I started a battle with Buff State over their decision to pull funding for freelance writers at The Buffalo State Record when I went to school there back in 1995-1998 and lost that battle. As a result, I left campus and became a professional writer, so perhaps everything does work out in the end. Yet I digress…
In other news, one of my new editors (Thom Young at Comics Bulletin online) and I have come to the decision that we’re going to run the graphic novel reviews every Wednesday up online. If you like John Constantine: Hellblazer, then this is your week. I’ve got a review up right this instant for Andy Diggle’s phenomenal new vision/reboot/horrifying entrance into the series with ‘Hellblazer: Joyride’. Check it out by clicking over to:
-And then rush out to your nearest graphic novel retailer (preferably Don’s Atomic Comics in Depew) and buy the goddamned book!
That’s all I’ve got for today. Long live Vertigo. And would somebody for the love of god rescue the Rooftop Poetry Club. I’m looking squarely at you, Just Buffalo Literary Center. Food for thought. There are so few decent open readings in this town and Lisa Forrest’s brainchild on the campus of Buffalo State is one of them. Somebody save them. That’s all I’ve got for today.
Now most of you know what a neurotic obsessive I am with my web site(s). So the fact that my computer was demolished thanks to some ambitious hacker with a Trojan Worm this previous Friday caused me a great deal of grief. For the second time this year, I had to have my computer restored to its default settings so that I could get back on track. I’m very fortunate in that my future brother in law is a computer wunderkind, so he had it back up and running in a day and a half….
The other good news is that Rich (my producer at Think Twice Radio) scored me a 15 Gig Ipod for 42 dollars. So now I get to learn how to upload my 600 CDs (mostly Elton and Dylan) onto this thing. It’s third generation, but what are you gonna do?
Over the weekend, I recorded 12 and a half minutes of my bachelor party, read my opening intro and recorded a five minute ‘Question’ segment. Somehow this worked out to be about a half an hour Big Words Radio Show (episode 8.5). Check that out over at:
I’d give you a direct link to my feed on Think Twice, but the net still isn’t cooperating fully. I’ll re-edit later on…
I also recorded episode 9 on Monday at Mulligan’s Brick Bar with Geoff Kelly (managing editor at ArtVoice). It was a great show, but my producer has been tied up with work obligations, so to the best of my knowledge, it’s not up yet. It should be by week’s end, so I’ll get back to you as soon as it is.
This weekend was hell and back and back around again. I’m still coping with the emotional and psychic fallout. I really wish that anyone who’s ‘concerned’ about my ‘erratic behavior’ and feels that i should ‘slow down’ could walk a mile in my shoes this summer. A less durable person would have taken their own life by now or a whole bunch of other people’s and then their own by about mid July. Four of my friends have had complete meltdowns, the world is crashing down around my ears and I’ve written two entire books, launched a radio show and freelanced my ass off on top of a forty hour plus weekly job. So yeah, I’m going to be a little erratic. Deal with it.
Five years from now, I’ll look back and see the upswing. I’ll look on this time as the sheer amount of career leapfrogging I’ve been doing as a writer. So I would do it again a million times. When I can quit my day job and do the radio thing or the writing thing full time, things will be a lot easier. I’m not the praying kind, but if you are, say one for me. I’ve put my time in. I’ve been writing since I was 13 and I’ve been on the radio for seven years in one form or another, so it would be really nice to make $40,000 to start to do what I love. I’ll get there, but it would be nice to get there faster. It infuriates me to think that there are so many talentless clowns who fell ass backwards into union jobs that I’ve worked my ass off to get to. It’ll happen, but it really needs to happen sooner rather than later before I snap completely or lose everyone and everything I care about.
But I digress. Week 92 of Night Life is on stands with a Big Words ‘uncut’ column of ‘Love Letter To Lancaster’. I wanted to run it in August, but I didn’t get around to it. Later today, I’ll be dropping in on Lisa Forrest’s Rooftop Poetry Club at Buffalo State, my old haunting ground. Rooftop and the Center For Inquiry remain my two favorite poetry reading venues. I’m going to try and record the reading for Think Twice, but we’ll see what happens.
ArtVoice has also decided to run my graphic novel reviews. And they’ve given me the green light to do three Pro-Buffalo PD interviews. At least one writer in this goddamned town should be an ultra conservative, so if it’s gotta be me, so be it. It’s early in the morning, so I’ll leave you with that. Four days without the web or a computer has left me behind the eight ball, so I’ve got other things to do.
Listen to the radio show. Grab a copy of Night Life. We can branch out from there. Peace out,
That’s right, my sphere of influence continues to spread like an open sore. My new beloved editor at Comics Bulletin and myself have agreed to throw my graphic novel reviews up once a week until further notice. I coudn’t think of a better venue for comic book opinions, and honestly, it’s refreshing to find an online site that’s more than ready and willing to take my reviews ‘as is’ without frequent retooling (lke Buffalo Rising, for example). Check out the ‘Escape From Bizarro World’ review over at:
And speaking of Buffalo Rising, ain’t it sad how few comments they’ve gotten in the last two, three and four weeks? How very pathetic. Either no one is reading or their own contributors aren’t signing in under their psuedonyms to chime in on their own work. Boo hoo. What is it going to take to have Elena Buscarino’s job, I wonder? I’m not sure, so I’m just going to keep at it. Now that we’ve learned that Newell is no longer in charge and that so and so and what’s his face are emptying their pockets trying to keep the ship afloat, I guess we’ll just have to dig deep and try harder, won’t we? Or failing that, destroy someone else’s life with a minimum of effort. It’s getting SO much easier, and it’s always been ever so much FUN!
I just talked to my beloved editor (Ed Honeck) at Night Life today along with my longstanding contact at ArtVoice (Geoff Kelly) and all is right with the world. It’s incredible just how much mud you can sling about one person behind the scenes as well as in front of. It helps to have contacts, networking partners and so forth. That’s neither here nor there, though. I’ll just say that you can’t buy a stellar sphere of influence for destroying people, now can you?
My Deepthroat connection is mute this week. Perhaps he’s occupied, run out of good muck to rake, or just bored. Time will tell. I’m sure there are other platforms and crusades I can move on to, but I’m still waiting for word from Buffalo Rising that Elena Buscarino is dead/fired/insane/committed. If anyone else has any good scoop, I’m all ears.
Keep me posted,
A busy, bustling seven days. Four podcast episodes for Think Twice in seven days. A score of poems, a few rants, some networking, some marketing, some booking work on the Monsters Of Verse gigs…I don’t know where to begin! Whelp, how about the beginning?
These Monday updates are supposed to be about the Night Life Big Words I Know By Heart column, so let’s get back to that. Week 91 assaults the newstands today with the third and final installment (conclusion) to ‘Alia Iacta Est’, the serialized print version of the Buffalo Rising jihad. I’m still not done with them by a long shot, but I thought that print readers might want to be in the loop and it’s a good venue for talking even more trash. Night Life’s got my back through and through, which is why I’m so loyal to them.
Saturday night, Carrie and Ron Gardner came over to our posh Lancaster bungalow to record podcast episodes 7 and 8 of the Big Words Radio One Man Mobile Unit! The reason why I waited so long to post the Monday update today was due in large part to the fact that I was waiting for Rich to post episodes 7 and 8. I appreciate his efforts and due to a seperate studio booking yesterday, we were unable to ‘put the tracks down’ in their entirety yesterday, so there was a two day delay in posting them up online.
Episode 7 is an informal interview with Carrie and her ‘man candy’ Ron Gardner regarding her career, Ron’s music, composing, poetry and a lot of other uncomfortable topics.
Episode 8 is an informal ‘concert’ we held in my dust-caked hell hole of a basement with a PA system and the third member of the Monsters Of Verse, JR Finlayson. We were all very pleased with the results.
Dial both of the new episodes up on your Ipods at the intraweb address provided:
I’ll leave it at that. Monday is supposed to be ‘date night’ with the wife and I’m cutting into it, so I’ll scoop you all with more of ‘the knowledge’ later in the week. That’s all, folks!
(this one shouldn’t be too difficult to figure out)
fOOl fEll in a vAt
jusT liKe tHat
Cut mY fAce
sO lEt’s lOse coNtrol
tHe humAn racE
Cat & moUse mE
plaY The straIght mAn,
i’lL haVe Fun
daYs iN tHe Sun
beaT uP youR boY
heLen Of trOy
& tHe wOrld
wHen wE cAn pLay
cOwbOys & IndIans
…I’m Only jOking!!!!
Don’t bE sO Dark
i’M haVing a laRk
leaVing yOu bOdies
nOne Of it mAtteRs
& whAt doeSn’t kiLL mE
JUst mAkeS mE sTRanger
airbORne crEAm pIEs
& a puCk-
i cAn dO thiS
aLl dAy lOng
fOr tHe reSt oF oUr
nOw lEt’s geT doWn
tO braSS tACks
iF i dOn’t sEE
5 fAt laDIes siNGing
oN a trAMpOliNe ovEr 5 millIOn dollArs $
tHe bOy dOEsn’t see
hIs 16th birTHday cAkE
Believe it or not, once I got my hands on Think Twice’s Marantz portable digital recorder, I had to do another episode! Jeff Finlayson, Carrie Gardner and myself have been discussing the concept of doing a few rehearsals so that we can work on our timing, our intonation, our delivery and our familiarity with our poems leading up to the paying gigs booked from October through May for our ‘Monsters Of Verse’ Algonquian thinktank promoting poetry, our books and the general belief that no one person should be more important than anyone else.
We’re really psyched about this ‘tour’, as it were, with a Screening Room gig in December, a Center For Inquiry Gig in May and a bunch of other spots I’d have to check my calendar to go over. You’ll know more about it as the dates approach. So last week, I approached a friend of mine about doing a series of secret shows at their restaurant on Tuesday nights when it was quiet. Since he cancelled the notion after this first podcasted concert, I guess I can give up the ghost: it was Desiderio’s. This saddens me, but if you listen to the show, you’ll find that it was a bit…intimate for a mass audience that wasn’t primed for the experience. Carrie came down with a sore throat yesterday and couldn’t make it, so JR Finlayson and myself took to the stage along with Lindsay (who has volunteered as a backup reader in the event that depression takes me during the slated bookings).
I’m really proud of the show. After the previous two, it’s inarguable that I was capable of pushing the envelope any further (comedically), so I decided to go in a different direction. Think of this as a ‘very special’ episode of Big Words. I’ve still got a few more plans in the works, but get yourself up to date over at:
I just might have one more episode up my sleeve at week’s end but we’ll see where the week takes us. I’m also very proud to announce that my entire SLATE of graphic novel reviews (the handful that Elena Buscarino at Buffalo Rising was too half-witted to publish on faith) have been gladly accepted over at Comicsbulletin.com. You can read the latest post (‘Country Nurse’ by Jeff Lemire) at:
Busy busy. By most reports from friends and loved ones lately, I need to slow down anyway, and to be honest, I hit the glass ceiling some time earlier this week and I’m starting to embark on a slow descent. Everyone needs a rest some time, don’t they? Whelp, it should be a nice downhill slide.