25 September 2010

For the love of sanity.

I've decided to compile a list of all the things in my life that are currently keeping me sane.  Just to, you know, make sure that there still are things that are making me and sustaining me as a human being.  (I'm half alive but I feel mostly dead.)


Things that are keeping me sane:
  1. True, lovely, old-timing friends.  The ones that have been calling and texting me daily to see if I'm still alive.  The ones that Skype with me for hours at a time.  The ones that will sit there in my living room and hold me as I crumble and disintegrate into a thousand little pieces and hand me a paper towel to soak up the tears.  (I've become an emotional basket case, haven't you heard?)  I have come to realize in the past couple weeks who my tried and true friends are, simply because I've tried them and they are true, and I am absolutely overwhelmed with gratitude for having them.  
  2. Cheap wine.  Ahh, yes, I turn to the age-old comfort of alcohol to calm my insanities. I like a rich cab and a lovely goblet-sized wine glass.  
  3. Rilo Kiley.  Have you heard them?  One of the most amazing lyrical-genius bands I've ever heard.  They are one of those bands that just gets better and better with each song, and each repeat of each song.  Portions for Foxes is probably the specific sanity booster right now. (Listen here.)  
  4. English 327: Creative Nonfiction & English 415: Editing for Literary Magazines.  At the risk of revealing the extreme nerd that sulks beneath my skin, I absolutely adore and live for these two classes right now.  Creative Nonfiction is the only class I am taking this semester that allows me to be creative, and it is absolutely fantastic.  It's a workshop class, so we read famous personal essays and memoirs (my favorite so far: M.F.K. Fisher, for obvious reasons).  We also get to read each others' personal essays.  I made 20 copies of my personal essay last week, and for an entire 50-minute class period the class discussed what was working in my essay and what needed to be improved.  As a writer, this feedback is invaluable and I live for any opportunity to improve my craft.  Editing for Literary Magazines is amazing in a different way.  We are the official editors of my school's literary magazine, Watershed. There are only 12 of us, lead by one of the most amazing professors I've ever had, and we basically are going to be reviewing submissions from all over the country of short stories, poems, and photographs.  We have not yet begun the selection process, but have been reading a lot of interesting material and coming to class prepared to sit in a circle and discuss it in-depth.  It's like an intimate little book club that I get college credits for.  
  5. Miranda July, my new favorite author.  The Shared Patio and The Man on the Stairs, two of her short stories, were actually assigned for my English 415 class, and I fell in love with them.  I went to the library and checked out her collection of short stories, No one belongs here more than you.  Since I no longer possess the attention span to tackle full-length novels and get engulfed in them, I am a sucker for short stories.  I think I love her stories so much, and have included them on this list, because the narrator is crazier than me, and it's like a lifeboat on these choppy seas of my existence.  Seriously, check this book out.  It will transport you somewhere you need to be right now.
So, yeah.  That's 5 things that are keeping me sane right now. There are 5 things keeping me pieced together.  Let's hope I don't lose any of them, I'm not sure what will happen. 

Namaste, y'all.

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