Monthly Archives: May 2011

Here. There. Everywhere.

Do you ever experience those times when you feel like you’re split into halves? You’re dwelling on more levels than one? In more realms than just this, or simply here?

Welcome to my world.

Life is moving in all directions at a pace that seems faster than the Datona 500, and I am not even sure how fast that is as I am not into race cars.

I just know that sometimes it feels like I can’t keep up. I don’t know where the exit sign is, or if there is an exit, for that matter.

Since I last blogged lots has happened. First of all, many of you know I live surrounded by old growth woods. We have a rich diversity of winged animals, and recently one of our largest and most magnificent, a red-tailed female hawk, perished. How did I know…one might not notice? She was lying directly beside our driveway one day. I stopped, got out of my car, was horrified and curious- no blood, not lying directly under any tree. Did she simply die of old age? Regardless, it haunted me throughout that weekend. That day, when I’d returned  home, I moved her position to an old oak tree stump, the very one from which I watched her devour many of her prey over the years.

Then, as life would have it, and later this cold and wet spring than ever before, the robins are building their nest in the lilac bush. And so, with a death comes creation, and soon, babies.

I had the good fortune of attending yet another kick-off of mentor and teacher Judy Bridges | Shut Up & Write!. She and her troup, Amy Lou Jenkins, Sara Rattan, and Maura Fitzgerald all read and entertained the troops at one of the finest gems of all bookstores in Milwaukee: Woodland Pattern Book Center. If you have never been to this sacred spot, what are you waiting for?

Then, last Saturday, I led the second “Flash in the Pan” workshop last for RedBird-RedOak Writing. We had 12 participants and the wrap-up from my exceptional boss, Kim Suhr is here: Flash a Blast! Thanks to everyone for their interest in this genre that continues to fascinate and intrigue me.

Here are the links to some new pieces:

Implications by Robert Vaughan | 52|250 A Year of Flash for week #51: unintended consequences.

Buried by Robert Vaughan | 52|250 A Year of Flash for week #52: threesome.

Also, thirtynine contains the third “quarter” collection from 52/250 and my piece, Elements of K, is included. This is an elegiac tribute to my mother, Kay.

This project, 52/250, was one of the most ambitious and gratifying projects that I was involved with for the 2010-2011 writing year. I am eternally grateful to Michelle Elvy, Walter Bjorkman and John Wentworth Chapin, friends and extra-ordinary writers indeed.

Two different writing experiences, both involve reflecting on my own writing. Gay Degani, Words in Place, asked me to ponder my flash piece in “On Writing “Recollection” and Flash Fiction. This was no easy task, to write more words about a micro-fiction than it contains itself! 229 Yet, I felt up for the challenge, and so, thanks to Gay at Flash Fiction Chronicles (and to Ana Carrete at New Wave Vomit for publishing “Recollection.”)

Speaking of Flash Fiction Chronicles, I was thrilled to see that they are amassing a list of 100 Story Links in Honor of Short Story Month 2011. Then, I was ecstatic to see my short piece, “10,000 Dollar Pyramid” added to the list (#66! Good omen!) Thanks to the editors and to dear pal, and writer fantastique, Meg Tuite. What would I do without you?

My poem, “Fragments” is up at Fictionaut, originally at phantom kangaroo. Thanks Claudia for creating my favorite new (haunting) poetry site.

Party Like an Animal, is up at HOUSEFIRE! Thanks Riley Michael Parker, cowboy killer.

And just today, Susan Tepper engages me in her Monday Chat with Robert Vaughan – Fictionaut Blog. Such fun!

So, see what I mean? Life is busy, busy, busy. I have work forthcoming in Connotation Press, Other Room Journal, Pure Slush, Eunoia Review, among several other journals.

And finally the sun is out. Pouring into my office. Aaahhh.

That makes me very happy.

May Flowers

What a whirlwind world we live in: a Royal wedding televised like nothing previously, followed by the death of an infidel with images we would never see prior to this week. The movies don’t get better than this! How does it relate to fiction? Say a writer brings memoir to a roundtable, reads it. During feedback, someone might say it just doesn’t sound “real,” or the voice or point-of-view sounds “inauthentic.” And the writer usually gets defensive: “But, but, this is how it REALLY HAPPENED!”

Point is, it doesn’t matter. Life is far more stranger than fiction, exemplified this past week on a massive scale.

Some writing features since I last blogged:

We taped our April Flash Fiction Friday show at WUWM’s Lake Effect. This month, local writers Laurel Landis (“Carousel”) and Timmothy Merath (“Juggernaut”) read their flash pieces, and I had the privilege of reading Meg Tuite’s “Distracted.” We’ve had lots of great feedback and the show would not be possible without the efforts of my delightful co-host, Stephanie Lecci and the Lake Effect staff. WUWM: Lake Effect – Flash Fiction Friday: Choices in Gender   Listen for submission opportunities.

My piece, “The Outlaw” is included in the May elimae! This is one of my favorite online magazines, so it’s fantastic to be included among such talent. I re-posted the piece at Fictionaut. (It appeared originally at 52/250 in January). “The Outlaw” by Robert Vaughan → Fictionaut Thanks editor Brandon Hobson!

And speaking of 52/250, it’s hard to believe this incredibly  fun, generous, and gracious community will be writing it’s last segment this week, with the theme for the 52nd week: “Threesome.” For what’s to come with 52/250,  read What’s Next? | 52|250 A Year of Flash Thanks editors Michelle, John & Walter!

And my latest When He Calls by Robert Vaughan | 52|250 A Year of Flash

Cold Front by Robert Vaughan | 52|250 A Year of Flash

Matron by Robert Vaughan | 52|250 A Year of Flash

I have a collection of three micro-fiction at Blue Lotus Review. Thanks editor Amy Willoughby Burle.

“Liminal” is included in a great May line-up at Negative Suck. Thanks editor Jeffrey Callico .Wordprompt 5 – NEGATIVE SUCK

“Loneliness” is up at Magnolia’s Press. Thanks editor Will Clingan “Loneliness,” Robert Vaughan « MP

Happy One Year Anniversary to Russell at The Camel Saloon! Check out the great line-up of writers, including buddy Len Kuntz with his poem, “The Truth About Snow”: The Camel Saloon Thanks Russell, for all of your ongoing support.

I have work forthcoming at 52/250, “Nowhere in Sight” at Pure Slush (check out this site for the Queer theme all May). About – Pure Slush

Also a non-fiction article called “On Writing Recollection and Flash Fiction” is forthcoming at Flash Fiction Chronicles (thanks Gay Degani). Flash Fiction Chronicles I’ve work coming out at Frwiction, Used Furniture Review, Rufous City Review, Cavalcade of Stars, Thirty-Nine, The Scream, and more.

During the month of April, Thunderclap Press supported poets and Poetry Month by publishing a poem per day on our blog. Check it out! A chapbook is forthcoming, as well as discounts on Thunderclap 5! Get it NOW!

Please join us for our next Redbird-Redoak on the road! A Cafe Fixx Showcase in May 5th, more information here: RedBird-RedOak Writing

Also, I will be teaching FLASH IN THE PAN on May 14th. Register today, before its too late! “Flash in the Pan” with Robert Vaughan « RedBird-RedOak Writing

Happy trails my friends, until next installment!