Procrastination Station #106


Link love!

“Your cousin/friend of a friend/former classmate will get a major role. Write/direct/manage/create/invent a Hollywood Internet Silicone Valley thing. They will instant message all available social satellites: Never stop chasing your dreams. Hard work will pay off in the end. You have to fall before you phoenix. They will be 23.”

If you read nothing else this week, read Fielden Nelson’s Failure Map over at McSweeney’s. You will relate.

Chris Scott, one of my all-time favourite photographers, took a photo of Colin McGuire, former ONS Featured Poet and one of my all-time favourite poets. Dream team!

Rachel McKibbens has done something not unlike I just did recently and put some of her online poems together in the same place. GO READ HER GENIUS WORDS, FOR SHE IS AWESOME.

“Do you know what that is, sweet pea? To be humble? The word comes from the Latin words humilis and humus. To be down low. To be of the earth. To be on the ground. That’s where I went when I wrote the last word of my first book. Straight onto the cool tile floor to weep. I sobbed and I wailed and I laughed through my tears. I didn’t get up for half an hour. I was too happy and grateful to stand. I had turned 35 a few weeks before. I was two months pregnant with my first child. I didn’t know if people would think my book was good or bad or horrible or beautiful and I didn’t care. I only knew I no longer had two hearts beating in my chest. I’d pulled one out with my own bare hands. I’d suffered. I’d given it everything I had.”

A beautiful and heartbreaking call-and-response between two female writers over at the Rumpus. Bravo.

Also at the Rumpus: the Beat Generation and their outrageous heckling. (who sent me this? Mr Derry? I think so. Thanks, anyway!)

21 women write love poems to Adrienne Rich, over at VIDA. So brilliant. Watch this space for Read This Press’ own take.

“Who decides if your work is good? When you are at your best, you do. If the work doesn’t deliver on its purpose, if the pot you made leaks or the hammer you forged breaks, then you should learn to make a better one. But we don’t blame the nail for breaking the hammer or the water for leaking from the pot. They are part of the system, just as the market embracing your product is part of marketing.”

A bit corporate-y, but potentially useful for writers: Don’t Expect Applause, by blog guru Seth Godin.

Sixty poets celebrate each year of the Dear Old Queen’s reign. Yay? (I love Liz Lochhead’s one.)

OH NO HE DIDN’T — Roddy Shippin being a total punner over at a handful of stones.

This is a really cool interview with Rattle editor Tim Green, in which he talks online vs. print poets and all sorts of other interesting stuff. (Thanks, Heather!)

“Sometimes when a person sells a book, once the elation and sheer joy has settled a bit, and the person receives that person’s editorial letter, and sets cheerily to revising, that person might realize suddenly that the book that person wrote is in fact THE STUPIDEST BOOK IN THE ENTIRE WORLD, LIKE FOR REAL, and must be REWRITTEN ENTIRELY, preferably by SOMEONE ELSE, since clearly that person is TOTALLY INCAPABLE OF WRITING A BOOK THAT IS NOT STUPID, and maybe other well-meaning people are all like “Obviously your book is not stupid since it is being published and anyway didn’t you say your editor was really smart and awesome so why would she buy a book that wasn’t good” and the person is all like HAVE YOU BEEN IN A BOOKSTORE LATELY OR EVER IN YOUR LIFE DO YOU UNDERSTAND THAT “PUBLISHED” HAS ABSOLUTELY NO RELATIONSHIP TO “NOT STUPID” AND POSSIBLY THE EDITOR WAS DRUNK WHEN SHE BOUGHT MY BOOK THESE THINGS DO HAPPEN and that person may become inordinately stressed for a time re: the stupidness of the person’s book.”

I so freaking love the artist formerly known as The Rejectionist, aka Sarah McCarry, so much.

I was really interested to hear Tracey S Rosenberg’s thoughts on the comparisons to be made (or not) between US and Scottish slams.

The Joy of Reading. < -- Click this. Seriously. (Thanks, Camilla!)

Larkin hoarded like the miser he was, collected mild bondage magazines, and occasionally used the “n” word — hardly laudable traits, but not exactly war crimes either. Persona or no persona, didn’t he make it clear in [his poems] that he was no model of mental health? The argument seemed to be that if someone used the word “n—-r” in his correspondence (which he did — half mocking his own bigotry, but only half), the poetry he wrote must reflect the same racist, rancid prejudices. But it doesn’t. Larkin, who was very far from confusing art with life, knew that his prejudices and pettinesses were inassimilable to his poetry.

This article is the best thing I have ever read about the great, flawed genius that is Philip Larkin. Read it, read it all. (Thanks, Mark!)

I was really interested in these professional photographers discussing the worst shot they’ve ever taken.

Need a present for a book geek? This is pretty damn sweet!

“Through the Wire”… told the true-life story of how the aspiring star fell asleep at the wheel of his Lexus and woke up in Cedars Sinai hospital with half his jaw lodged in the back of his throat. He rapped the story three weeks after the accident, in highly original rhymes delivered with his jaw wired shut. The accident occupies the triumph-over-adversity space in Kanye’s biography that being a former crack dealer occupies in Jay-Z’s. Kanye embodied a more emotionally blown-open mode of existence, and relished playing the role of Jay’s wide-eyed little brother and boundary-pusher—“The Lyor Cohen of Dior Homme,” as he billed himself on the single “Devil in a New Dress,” adding, “That’s Dior Homme, not Dior, homie.”

Kanye West is one of my all-time favourite recording artists ever, so I loved this article so, so, so much. I plan to now direct EVERYONE who says “ugh, you like KANYE WEST?!” to me RIGHT THERE.

Last week the HuffPo reprinted the pretty depressing cult “30 before 30″ article from Glamour. I’ve been watching the online responses with interest. This one is best read with the often pretty right-on comments, but my favourite was Hugo Schwyzer’s male equivalent.

Did you guys hear about the roof dog? TOO CUTE.

This is really good advice – and so pretty! Want!

Life getting you down? Feel like there’s something you’ll just never be able to master? Watch this video. Then shut up.

The Book Of The Future is amazing!

You guys know Taylor Mali’s ‘What Teachers Make’? This is a great adaptation of it for the classroom.

I love Kevin Cadwallender’s take on the writing process!

Remember this? Still a whole load of love for this poem/video!

Have a great weekend!

What are you loving this week?


You can also visit Read This Press for more poetry (and typewriter paraphernalia!). Alternatively, check out Edinburgh Vintage, our sister site. If you want to get in touch you can follow OneNightStanzas on Twitter, or email claire[at] I reply as swiftly as I can!

(Photo credit)

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2 Responses to “Procrastination Station #106”

  1. Sarah Says:

    Claire, this is completely unrelated to this post, and feel free to reject it so that it doesn’t actually appear in the posts comments. Just feeling a bit too lazy to send an email. I was just wondering if you knew that your RSS feed seems to be kaput? At least for me- I use Google Chrome as my browser, and Google Feed Reader for my feeds. When I try to subscribe to your feed, it says “This feed contains no entries.” When I view the feed in Google feed reader, and click view all entries the last entry viewable was posted on Sept 20, 2008 - “Featured Magazines #3″. (I would love to be able to subscribe to your feed so this is a partially selfish message!)

  2. Claire Says:

    Hi Sarah! It’s OK — other folk have had this problem, too. It seems to be some people’s feed readers display the RSS fine, and others don’t. I switched from using Wordpress’ own RSS to using FeedBurner a long while ago (probably Featured Magazines #3 was the last post before the switch), so some people can only see the old feed.

    My suggestion is, instead of clicking ‘RSS’ on the homepage, go into Google Reader and hit the ’subscribe’ button, then just search for ‘’ This fixes it for some people, though not all… might work?