Like many poets, I've tried my hand at a prose poetry novel, meaning the story includes lyrical description and rhythmic sentences along with a sense of adventure. Part 1 is officially out for readers who want to get a head start. It's not the whole story, which will be coming out in instalments, along with a fully complete novel in the fall.
Marcie Anderson has always yearned to understand her mysterious origins, so when Grandma tells her that on her thirteenth birthday, she can open the locket that will answer all her questions, she jumps right in. There is no turning back when she learns she is a Light Bearer and the only person who can rescue Zanfry Zabadon Starlight from the planet of machines where an evil princess is holding him hostage.
For those days when you want to flex your other writing muscles and dedicate yourself to the precision of crafting short stories, this is a great opportunity open to submissions from all over the world: Submissions are open for a new short fiction contest sponsored by the Federation of British Columbia Writers (FBCW). Award-winning novelist Eileen Cook will be the judge of the 2018 B.C. Short, a competition for original, unpublished short stories. The word length is between 1,200 and 2,000 words. (No children’s fiction.) Stories must be written in English. First prize is $350. “The Federation of British Columbia Writers is deeply committed to supporting and inspiring writers,” said FBCW president Ann Graham Walker. “We’re keeping the entry fees affordable, and hoping to see a lot of participation.” Novelist Eileen Cook has been named the judge of the inaugural B.C. Short. “We’re thrilled to have Eileen as the judge for this year’s contest,” said organizer Cynthia Sharp, a Vancouver writer on the board of the FBCW. “Her work is powerful, and her eye for story is impeccable.” Eileen is a multi-published author with novels in eight languages. Her books have been optioned for film and TV. They include With Malice, Remember, Year of Mistaken Discoveries, The Almost Truth, Used to Be and Do or Di. She is a popular speaker at conferences both in the U.S. and in Canada, provides writing/editorial coaching, and is a mentor/instructor for the Simon Fraser University Writer’s Studio, The Write Potential and The Creative Academy. The entry fee is $15. Members of the FBCW pay only $10 to enter. Entrants should use Submittable. The name of the entrant must not appear anywhere on the entry itself. Work must be original and not previously published. Submissions must be in MS Word, PDF or RTF format, in Times New Roman 12 point font. Electronic submissions only. The deadline for submissions is June 1, 2018. Winners will be announced on July 30, 2018. The winning entry will be published in WordWorks, the magazine of the Federation of BC Writers. Board members of the FBCW and their immediate family are not eligible to enter. Visit https://www.bcwriters.ca for more information about the Federation of British Columbia Writers.
All of us have a place within, a nirvana, a connection with the divine inside and beyond. In old Spanish, it is called querencia, a space that is your own, where your soul finds peace even away from home. It is an alcove within where you are your most authentic, peaceful self, a harbor where you recharge, safe in every way, with no pressure to speak or explain. The place where you are your deepest, truest self. Where you hear your thoughts and inner light. Where you can plan and rest. Where you can stay as long as you’d like until you choose to venture back out into the larger arena of life.
Every September when I open a new grade eleven class, I ask the students to write about their favorite setting – their room, a corner of the library, the forest, the beach, somewhere they go with friends or alone as our first descriptive writing assignment. I still remember everyone’s querencia from all my decades of teaching, ever in awe of the light of their beings and the privilege it is to be trusted with knowing such beauty.
I do the assignments myself too. I have a couple of places that are a needed querencia for me – a walk in a sunlit forest or along the ocean shoreline when the waves are crashing exuberantly, then coming home and reading peacefully with a cup of earl grey tea, when I have the whole afternoon and evening to my thoughts and writing, the way it is to commune with the best of books. My three line poem above alludes to my personal querencia.