Phew, it’s been a busy couple of weeks. We’re up to almost twenty hours of daylight here in Anchorage and sleep has become impossible. Even with blackout curtains over the bedroom windows, my mind still knows that it’s light outside and won’t turn off. I lie in bed each night, my body exhausted while my mind races with possibilities for stories and essays, poems and freelance articles. Sometimes I furiously write these down on my phone. Other times I get up and try to write on my laptop, which wakes me up even the more.
Still, it’s all good. Walking the beach at 11 p.m. is good. Seeing a bear peeking out of the brush at 10 p.m. is good. Running along the coast during high tide at 9:30 p.m. is good. And hiking down the Middle Fork Trail at 10:30 p.m. and seeing a moose is good.
This, however, isn’t so good: The Helene Wurlitzer Foundation doesn’t want to grant me a three-month residency in Santa Fe next year, sigh, sigh. This was a big disappointment, even though it would have interfered with my annual time in Tucson and even though I wasn’t sure I wanted to spend three months alone and writing when I could instead be running through the Tucson mountains and racing 50K races through the Phoenix desert.
Still, rejection hurts, people. It smacks you around, bruises your ego, makes you doubt and question yourself. Which I did. I sulked and doubted, questioned every piece of writing I’ve ever written.
And then I got over it because this came in the mail.
The Summer Issue of Rattle Magazine, with yours truly as one of the featured poets.
And I also received this email from Ted Jonathan, a quite established poet:
Hi Cinthia Ritchie,
Just to let you know your poem was one of my faves. I like to let poets know because we know hardly anyone gives a fuck.
Isn’t that one of the most wonderful email messages ever? I think that I now have a bit of a writerly crush on Mr. Jonathan, hee, hee.
When I’m not writing (which I’ll admit I haven’t been doing as much as I’d like because, you know, almost twenty hours of daylight and all), I’ve been running trails and hiking trails, walking the beach and swimming at the YMCA (too cold to swim outdoors here) and trying to soak up as much summer as possible.