Fiction Benediction

Fiction-Uncovered-006For my birthday this year, I got a story accepted to Forest Avenue Press’s anthology of fantastic fiction. I’ve got another story in the Clackamas Literary Review (available here!) and another coming out this summer from VoiceCatcher.

Anyone who writes knows how much struggle it involves, and 2015 has had its share of personal struggles as well. That’s why, in keeping with my general philosophy of Throw Yourself a Party!, I’m celebrating victories great and small today–and dedicating this poem to everyone committed to the craft. Cheers!


Job Counseling

If you are a liar, and cannot seem to stop lying,

consider fiction.


If as a child you were like an adult.

If as an adult you are like a child.


If you have a lot of imaginary friends,

and those friends have friends of their own.


If others are amazed at how little you’ve managed to accomplish.

If any question regarding this requires lengthy explanations.

If people occasionally have a hard time following.


If you’ve always loved poetry,

but poetry won’t have you.

If you’d often rather eavesdrop.

If you’re prone to reading in bars.

If a hot date with Middlesex is your idea of a good time.

If you tend to wind up in a corner at the party

discussing Lady Chatterly’s Lover with some earnest young nerd

while others bump and grind.


If you require so much psychoanalysis that you could not possibly afford to hire a shrink.

If you have irrational aversions to certain words, but not what those words refer to:

flesh, for instance, or pink.


If you guard the truth ruthlessly then spill it when you’re drunk.

If you’ve got some alarming heirlooms packed up in a trunk.

If mortifying memories are precious to you.

If you cannot help but imagine the worst.

If your dead relatives haunt you.

If remunerative occupations bore you.

If you have a history of heartbreak in your family.


If you’re always in character,

no matter who you are.


Sit back and consider:

madness, depression, melancholy?

Might not be so bad. What we’re suggesting,

obviously, is a last resort. Say,

if no one can talk you out of it.


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