Showing posts from February, 2012

Boss Nass in 3D

I ventured into the realm of writing a fiction short story this week. I was sent a link by a friend to a publisher soliciting short stories that incorporate the element of cartography and "place." Well if there's one thing I know it's cartography. Couple it with writing, and it becomes nirvana-like for me. I was looking to submit something I'd already written, when my writing instructor said why don't I try writing a fictional piece for it? I couldn't think of a reason why not and like she said, it would give me a little break from the non-fiction pieces I had been focusing on. I set about it with a shell of a story line. I wonder if that's how most fiction writers start out? Do they just start hammering away and totally make it up as they go along, or do they know how it's going to end before they start? This is new ground for me, so the questions are many. I found it easy to get revved up and the first couple pages came off easily. Then I start

Maps and Legends

I spent the tail end of last week at the WI Land Information Association (WLIA) Conference in Steven's Point. It was a map geek conference that happens every year. There were 350 land information professionals in attendance and like most every conference, we talked about our work constantly. We talked over breakfast, in the hall after the sessions, at lunch, at the social events, in the elevators and  even on the ride home. Yes, we're pretty pathetic. At the same time, I would argue that we're passionate. We love our jobs, that's why we gather every year. We share ideas, talk through problems, argue, critique and laugh. I remember one time my boss's wife went along on a conference with him and by the end of it she said "You guys never stop talking about work, do you?" The answer is nope. Oh sure we catch up on each others' families and such, but after those three minutes are up, we're back to talking about terrestrial scanners, relational dat

Truth and Fiction

I had another fantastic writing class on Wednesday. We've got a couple of new students in the class, so it's nice to not only have new faces, but to hear fresh, new writing as well. One of them is writing adult fantasy, a story about a witch from a coven. There are a couple of other students, past and present, that have written about witches, so I am learning more about witches and witching than I ever wanted to. It's nothing that I would ever write about, but I respect people who do their homework and research about the subject, enough to write creepy stories about them. Even more though, I respect their ability to use their minds and creativity to evoke emotions of fear, sadness, excitement and fun from their readers. The other new student is working on a fiction piece that is based on truth, or true events. That is a style I'm enamored with at the moment. Being someone whose style (strength?) is memoir, I like the idea of taking a true event and fictionalizing it,

Groundhog Day

The strange winter of 2012 continues. It was 40+ degrees again today and almost all the snow is gone. It's been more like a hard Fall than a Winter around here. They attribute it to some sort of La Nina offshoot, but I have to wonder if it's not a continuing reminder of the way greenhouse gases are affecting our climate. We've seen some really weird weather these past ten years or so, and while I'd like to chalk it all up to the weather randomness, I fear the worst. Maybe it's for naught. I hope it is. Besides, I have to have something to worry about. Evidently Puxatawney Phil saw his shadow so we're blessed with 6 more weeks of winter. I guess if that's the case, at least it will be mild 6 weeks. I got news today that my poem "Angel with Dirty Faces" was accepted for publication in the 2013 Wisconsin Poets Calendar . My writing instructor and another of her students were also accepted for the calendar as well. I am excited, as it's been a