writing. retreat!

the university of wyoming’s estella soto reports from the front lines.

i am engaged in a war with my words on the plains of colorado. where shortgrass is just what it sounds like. short. grass. and where there is no reason – earthly or otherwise – why i should not get a veritable buttload of writing done.

except, of course, that pesky interweb.

the things we googled: ash stymest (image search), vivien leigh (image search), black swan showtimes, JCREW, Southwest Airlines – Search Fares, awp conference registration, definition of tome – Free Online Dictionary, USC Trojans-UCLA Bruins game, coal creek uptown, CHER walkin in memphis, exes [who shall remain anonymous, unknown unknowable soldiers], myspace profile [deleted], facebook profile [wall posts/messages answered], cell phone bill [paid], netflix survey [answered in good faith],  bank accounts [not overdrawn].

the writing process: an essay in 8 photos

first, i printed everything i've written in the last 1.5 years - in various stages of completion/revision - and laid them out on my cot and looked at them. i felt things like excitement and fear.

then i went for a walk and admired the short. grass.

sometimes i think of my shadow as my better half.

as a matter of fact i did pack all of these items into a suitcase and wheel them up to the house. including (but not limited to): the norton anthology of latino literature, patti smith's autobiography, the wizard of oz & sleeping beauty & 8.5 (dvds), a lock-box full of index cards (where i store my heartbreaking work of unpublishable genius).

then i took a picture of the windmill outside.

then i read some queer critical theory essays and a henry james novel and took copious notes compiling evidence for my argument that henry james loves weiner.

then i took a picture of that windmill again. this time, at sunset.

just two writers on the plains trying to extract brilliant prose from our fingertips like...... i can think of a good simile i swear....... just give me a few more days in this little white room on the plains.

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4 thoughts on “writing. retreat!

  1. I’m sorry, but shortgrass looks like a horrible place to go. I would get absolutely nothing there because I would be too busy going completely insane. I think you guys should consider re-allocating the money you spend renting the place and use it to buy the department a new printer. Right?

  2. Are you writing a collection of fictitious love letters under the pseudonym Robert Hugh Mungus? I didn’t know we offered workshops in the literary arts of love letters @ UW. I want to take that class. And no, I don’t agree with Drew.

    • thus, you have uncovered my real thesis. and why i must work in complete solitude, harnessing the power of the wind upon the plains to fuel the passion of my pen. my thesis will also be entirely handwritten.

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