... in my new blue hues


I keep getting too busy to post here, working and doing things and trying to post other places... like many people, I end up working on projects and things and there just isn't enough time in the day. I remember way back, when blogging was simple and I had my "rounds" of regular reads, and friends. It felt more like having coffee with people, less like plugging events or readings or projects. Go look, look, read this, check this out. That is all so many of us do. Talk about how we are too busy. And we don't put much of ourselves out there, we put our work out there, "products" out there. I am proud of Full Of Crow and Red Fez, and editing web and print stuff. I feel like the work is important, just as I feel like my "day job" is important. The readings and festivals and books and reviews and promotion, all of that is important. But there is a lot of living that goes on in between.  But we all seem too busy for friendship, unless the friendship is useful.
I asked a friend about that, why, and she said that we all have to hustle, try so hard, push so hard for even just the smallest accomplishments as a writer or artist or both- that we find we can't afford to set time aside for relationships. While we rest, somebody else is tweeting their book, pushing their reading, spreading their name around, networking, connecting with people that can HELP THEM. Oh yes- and then showing off the results. Look at all my friends, look at the "likes" when I post clever things on facebook, look at how I work it! I'm getting somewhere. I'm valid. Sounds to me like fighting for crumbs, and forgetting the joy in the mix.
Listen, there is nothing wrong with being proud of work. There is nothing wrong with sharing what we do. Our real friends want to know, as we want to know what they are doing. Right?
But attention can become an addiction. That "look at me" impulse can drive people to spend literally hours a day, not on creating but on waving arms around saying "look at me". Not writing, not working, but attention. I hear people say you HAVE to do that. That is "the game".
I don't want that. If that is the price to pay to feel better about myself, I'll just take the suck and a cup of coffee, thank you.
Who knows where the lines are drawn between dedication, commitment, motivation, and self absorption. Working for this sense of audience, real and imagined, always hustling. For what? "Because writing is my passion!! Who I am!" Well, then let's do more of it. Facebook ain't writing. Writing is writing!
I am almost forty years old, and over the summer- near my birthday- I started thinking about some of the stuff I have been doing with my time. My spare time, with work and family, just feels so damn precious and there I was trying to do all of these things. More, more. And each thing, no longer approached with energy and enthusiasm, but with a sense of stress.
I'm too old to get excited about "titles" and I don't care if I sit at the table with the cool kids in the cafeteria. I never cared. I don't want my causes to be gimmicks, my regard for others to be phony backscratching, my favors to be currency, resentments to mount from kept scores. My ego needs something, but it is something else.
I have cut back on a bunch of things, trying to reset myself to an earlier point where I felt that things were manageable and happy. Maybe not happy, but the belief in the work made me want the stress. Stressing over things you love to do feels good. Stressing over what other people want you to do feels like shit.
I tried to explain on the last radio show that I wasn't stopping out of anger, that anger or frustration in a moment is not a good reason to quit things if you love them. I cut back because I needed that evening back and had not gone anywhere on a Thursday night in six months. That might not sound like a big deal, but there were times where it was. It was a commitment, and commitments, whether big or small, add up. And things in my life were adding up to huge chunks of my time. And money. And I was missing other things, also important to me. I haven't quit anything in anger or lack of interest or lack of enthusiasm. I am cutting back because I need more sleep.

So yeah, I have a bunch of readings coming up, and travel back to the bay area, and Ohio, and New Mexico. I have trips and cool things, and "stuff". I have things to plug, links, things going on.
But what I am looking forward to the most is spending time with friends, family, sharing, and connecting.
In the meantime, I will be working on the digital archives at Full Of Crow, and the upcoming Poetry, Fiction, Reviews, Blink Ink issues, interviews, etc. Editing fiction still at Red Fez. Travel plans. 100K Poets For Change, good things, important things.

The Bitchez Brew site is up: www.bitchezbrewreview.com.
New stuff at Full Of Crow: www.fullofcrow.com
Poetry, Fiction, Blink Ink in October. New Interviews. New books, new reviews. 
New issues every month at Red Fez: www.redfez.net
If you want to get a hold of me, email me! lynnalx@gmail.com

Strawberry Bitch @ Red Fez

I am really excited about this summer, where I will be heading west to a bunch of readings and events with good friends that I haven't seen in a while.
July 3 I will feature at Jeanne Lupton's poetry series at the Bread Workshop in Berkeley. Jeanne is a gracious, wonderful presence in the bay area poetry community and I am looking forward to seeing her again.
By July 4, most of the dozens of people making plans to get to the Bay area will be in town for the week and we are going to meet up at the home of

This Summer!

I have been terrible about blog updates, but in my defense- I have been busy as hell on other stuff. I just don't seem to get to my own backyard at the end of the day. I've been letting things go. I'm still producing and editing Full Of Crow and Fashion For Collapse, with new fiction and poetry up, among other things. Still doing some zines, projects, and head fiction editor now over at Red Fez. (They know not what they do...) Doing a monthly column over there for a few months now, "Strawberry Bitch" which is of course named after the nose art on a WWII airplane. You can actually go see it in Dayton, Ohio, and word is, the plane is haunted.
The last column, "Criticism's A Bitch"  will fuel an upcoming topic on Project U Radio (May 10, schedule and all show details here) and deals with female representation in small press and what-if anything- can or should be done about the issue. If you think it is an issue. Call in and tell us. (here)

This summer will be busy, events and more keep coming up. I am going to be the featured reader at the lovely Jeanne Lupton's poetry series at the Bread Workshop in Berkeley on July 3. Actually, I will be out in the bay area from July 2-10. July 5 is TOXIC ABATEMENT at Viracocha, SF. Poetry, music, more. Details are posted at the Fashion For Collapse site, here. Also look for it on facebook. In the next few weeks I will finalize the line up of readers. We are excited to have Three Times Bad scheduled. A great evening in store for San Francisco! 
On July 6, Paul Corman-Roberts and I will be performing "Morrigan Wars" in Berkeley. And on July 7, we will be part of the first East Bay Lit Crawl- BEAST CRAWL- a festival of readings in Oakland. (link to site) Michele McDannold and I are curating a reading as well as about 25 others, last count. That means over 25 readings, each with poets... this is going to be huge! We have a podcast of Project U Radio live from the Telegraph in Oakland, and Paul Corman-Roberts, Missy Church, and Hollie Hardy did a wonderful job with translating the vision for the festival. Listen/Download here. 
And speaking of festivals, check out ZyFez II on July 8 in Oakland, CA at The New Parish. Red Fez teamed up with Zygote In My Coffee for a poetry festival featuring guests from all over the US, converging in the bay area- many for the week. Imagine, literally DOZENS of poets and writers and small press publishers and artists all in one place, for you to meet. You will want to get out there if you can! And if you want information about any of these things, please just email me and I will give you details. lynnalx@gmail.com. 
Also look for these events on facebook and if you want some postcards and promo just ask and you shall receive. The best way to help with these events and to support the hard work of these fine performers and organizers is by spreading the word and being there if at all possible. Every day, we are thrilled to find out another among us has decided to make the trip and we warmly welcome all. 

Some of these events will stream live online and I will try to get the details about that soon, as well as links to YouTube. I'll do my best. And keep in mind that ZyFez III will be in Albuquerque, NM on November 3, 2012 at the Blackbird Buvette. 

Last but not least, submissions are open for Full Of Crow Poetry and Fiction, MiCrow (starting in June), and Blink Ink.  You can also check out photos, events, submission calls, projects, and more at the Crow blog here.  Submissions are also open at Red Fez, and that includes poetry, fiction, non-fiction, graphics, comics, and more. 

For those of you that are out there, and you know who you are, I'm sorry I have been busy and I would love to hear what you have been up to. Here's hoping you have a great summer and maybe I will see some of you soon! -Lynn 

Project U Radio

Project U Radio is part of The Literary Underground, a community and resource for small press writers, readers, and publishers. There will be a variety of shows, online, but my particular show will air at 11 EST, on Fridays as scheduled. The show page with descriptions and reminder options can be found here. (link) All you really need is a phone because you can opt to call in, or just listen. You know, stand there with your phone in your hand as it streams. There will be archives you can download later, or add to an mp3 player. I think it also syncs with iTunes. I would love to hear your feedback and ideas. And if you have a show, let me know. I will try to support that too, if I can.
I will be hosting with Paul Corman-Roberts, and guests and callers will be asked to speak out on different issues. Like I often say, I don't have the answers. I look for the answers. All are welcome, regardless of your views. Uncensored. Unscripted. Unhinged.
The first show (November 18) will actually focus on the question of "underground"- what it means, doesn't mean, if you identify, if it applies. Sometimes "underground" means hiding like rats, fighting for scraps. Sometimes it means a supportive sub-culture to create your own, to celebrate scraps, rejecting gourmet. Sometimes we find ourselves there by choice, sometimes we are trying to get out. Sometimes underground is the only place that will have us. Labels are a difficult thing. Every time we use them, we argue about defining them. If you have something to say about the label, why not chime in? The show pages always have a call in number, and your number will appear in the call queue. We won't say your number, but we might say the area code so you know that you are live, and it is your turn. You can always get in touch with me before as well, or send comments in and we can incorporate them into the show if you can't call. lynnalx@gmail.com. You can chat me up there as well, or look for the posts on facebook and twitter.
To check out the Literary Underground, go here. Michele McDannold (Red Fez) has created a fantastic resource, including a small press wiki. You might find yourself on there!

Photos- 2011

100K Poets For Change, Ohio, September 2011

Poets For Change, Elyria, Ohio

100 Thousand Poets For Change, set for September 24, 2011. (Read an article about it here) Join us for a day of poetry and music in Elyria, Ohio. Saturday, September 24, 10:00-6:30 p.m. I am excited about this, and it will be a great opportunity to reconnect with friends. Here is a description about the project and this event. It might not be practical to get to Ohio but there will be events going on all over.

Zygote In My Fez- August Reading

Zygote In My Fez Reading, August 2011
For updates on readers, check out the event page on facebook: here. The first Zygote-Red Fez joint poetry event will take place on Saturday, August 6 in Toledo, Ohio, at the Collingwood Arts Center. I would post the list, but it keeps changing. I'm not very good about updating this blog, so I am trying to be realistic. It isn't that I am reluctant in any way to spread the word about the creative talent that will be featured. It is just better to check it out as it evolves. This will be huge, people are coming from all over, friends reconnecting, community.
There will also be launch festivities for the Red Reader anthology, edited by Michele McDannold. 

March, And Spring Is Flirting

I am preparing for a few things this week: New content at Fashion For Collapse, new poetry at Full Of Crow edited once again by Aleathia Drehmer, and the Buffalo Small Press Fair on March 18 in Buffalo, NY, where we will have a table for Full of Crow Press, Tainted Coffee, Durable Goods, MUST zine, Blink Ink, and more.
Party after. Come.
I know I am terrible about being a "blogger" and even worse about getting to visit the blogs of others, and I keep trying periodically to do better. I don't want to make excuses, I have just been more busy than usual and this move is a big step for me, as are many of the changes in my life. I am visiting people with this panic like I won't ever see anyone again. I'm taking pictures of things, giving away things, I have this strange relationship with things right now and I know this is just a manifestation of my anxiety. But it is a strange fixation. I have never been far from New York City, for example. I've changed houses, but it is always there, if and when I want it. These little things are becoming bigger in my head and so I am having these ridiculous responses. I took a picture of a bookstore, a concert gazebo, street signs, people's pets, buildings, crazy things. Like I am hording images of the east onto little camera disks in case I wake up on the west coast with amnesia...

They Are Done! 150 Hours of Poetry!

If you are on facebook, you can check out the pictures from SNOETRY 2011 here. 
Snoetry, 150 hours of poetry, is winding down in Elyria, Ohio. I added a bunch of pictures to my facebook page, and more will come as everyone heads home and catches up on sleep. Among the scattered reads (by me) of famous poets like Ginsberg and Ferlinghetti were poems by Paul Corman-Roberts, Michael Solender, John Swain, Jim Wittenberg, Joe Hollander, Richard Godwin, Peter Schwartz, Doug Mathewson, and more. To the left, I am hanging out with John Burroughs, one of the organizers. He is a bit of a wonder to me, organizing events all over the Lorain County, Ohio, area. It would take me forever to write about all of the people I got to meet and hear, but they know who they are. Next on the agenda- Buffalo Small Press Fair in March where we will have an FOC table.

Live Feed, From February 2-6 2011

This is the live feed of SNOETRY 2011, which will stream everything live on the web for the duration. If you go to the streaming page, you can chat with other viewers and people in Elyria.
I will be reading at 10:30 pm, eastern time,on Saturday night. Check in, say hello, many laptops will be around. Thank you to John Burroughs for setting this up!

Live Videos by Ustream

Poetry, Elyria, Ohio

We are going to try to break the record for the longest poetry reading next week in Elyria, Ohio. I am going to be there on Saturday, Feb. 5, reading at 10:30 p.m. and then as needed later on, leaving Sunday.The specs: Snoetry 2: A World Record Winter Wordfest at Jim's Coffeehouse and Diner in Elyria, Ohio, is a Lix and Kix Poetry production, in association with Main Street Elyria, Poets of Lorain County, PoetryElyria, and the Ohio Poetry Association. They will stream the entire event live on the internet.

Thank you to Jason Michel for interviewing me over at Pulp Metal Magazine this week. The issue is up on the main page right now and I am in good company:

“I don’t want to eat it” – An interview with Lynn Alexander

“We’re Sanktuary. We like beer, hockey and Metal”

A Drill Too Far by Charlie Wade

Secret by Ian Ayris

Soft Tongue by Richard Godwin

The Milkmaid’s Prayer by KJ Hannah Greenberg

Snake At Leafbed Tree by Eris Bies

Lonely Graves by Mike Smith

Working on a few reviews here, just put up Tantra Bensko's and will add Kane Faucher, probably tomorrow.  Busy, busy. Good things going on though, with good friends. New and old.

Life In 100 Words Or Less

Thank you to Rowena for giving me the opportunity to describe my life in 100 words. Here.
Recently I was asked: Why cranes?
You would have to ask John Swain.
And if you have to ask: Why John Swain? You would have to ask Sir James Fraser.
But he's not available at the moment. 
To the vines, she cried.
Make rot of me.

Fashion For Collapse

Recall: Hurricane Katrina. Devastation. Politicians worried about their outfits for television press conferences. I'm told that people talk about Sarah Palin's clothing as much as her ideas, her rimless eyewear. Does she have ideas? Who cares. Nobody wants an idea unless it can be franchised.
New content up at Fashion For Collapse. Poetry, Fiction, Photo Essay by Kristin Fouquet about a memorial walk. Grieving squatters who died in a fire.
I shared with Kristin that I have an admiration for squatters. I spent some time with a group in Germany and they not only took me in but told me about their lack of attachment to geography. Their ideas stayed with me for a long time. In the weeks of wandering that followed, I thought about ownership, possessions, how easily could I leave my life? At that time, pretty easily.
But then again, at that time, I had nothing to go back to. For a few weeks at least, I lived without the worry and weight of the future. It is an indescribable feeling that I would never have again.

Chin Wag: Interviewed By Richard Godwin

Richard and I interviewed each other this week, his at PRATE and mine over at Chin Wag. We both got to know each other better and covered a lot of ground, and it was a cool experience.

The comments on the sites, on facebook, email, etc. are appreciated and I am really touched that people have been taking the time to read through them. You can find me here at Chin Wag, and Richard's at PRATE. 

Issue #5 of Blink Ink is done, heading out to mailboxes, and I did an extra run for some upcoming small press fairs- the next will hopefully be Buffalo.

Cover and Photography by Kristin Fouquet, edited by Doug Mathewson. Stories by John Brooke, Julia Davies, Hugh Fox, John Greiner, Shubhan Gupta, Matthew Zanoni Muller, Fawn Neun, John Sheirer, Michael J. Solender, Sweta Srivastava Vikram, Townsend Walker, Joanna M. Weston, Jim Wittenberg, and Angel Zapata. www.blink-ink.com.

New projects listed on the Crow Blog: Blink Ink Postcard, Brautigan Audio Tribute, Outsider Writers Annual Chap Swap, and more.

January, 2011

It's official, I'm a FezHead. As a long time admirer of Red Fez, I am pretty stoked to be one of the fiction editors now. I know, I have enough to do and this sounds like addiction or smacks of having no life whatsoever. But I swear, I can do it. Besides, I have no life whatsoever.
I lie. I'm going to Charlotte, N.C. this week where I will meet my indispensable MiCrow/On The Wing editor Michael Solender. I'm pretty excited.
I've been spreading the word about a few things- too many things- but just some quick mentions: I'm collecting audio for the Brautigan Tribute, details here. 
Details at the Crow blog for the Blink Ink Postcard fiction project, and the upcoming OWC Poetry Chap Swap. 

Jeff Callico was nice to include two of my stories this weekend in Negative Suck, Loitering At The Store and Poker At The Slovak Club.
I also have a strange little "minor implosion" there:
"Me And Sweet Disease".

Rummaging In The Attic, By Constance Stadler

Rummaging In The Attic is a collection of poetry by Constance Stadler, produced by Differentia Press in 2010. (Read It Online Here)
Constance Stadler takes us through a mindscape, the attic housing of the seemingly disparate in context and chronology, at times rendered mute and others- in the words of Rich Follett- buoyant, ebullient. The attic holds hope in the face of gracious resignation, the poet both grieves and reaches. Stadler writes with clarity and beauty about the journey, the poet struggling to live and see the present while responding to the inner tension of motion’s way, her needs. She honors the destination -even in the hypothetical- even as she acknowledges a deep and appreciative respect for the movement itself, for process. The process is something she has faith in, we find her indulging the self in transit, and it pays off. The journey no longer resembles a linear path, it becomes something that is both elusive and close to her heart.
There are certain features of Stadler’s poetry that convey this quality of “cohesive disjunction”, such as the way she places single, seemingly benign words that through pacing and structure bring the reader to a necessary pause. She is able to impose timing, and uses this skill like a musician, adapting speed to tone.
Readers might also find that she is able to achieve certain transitions imperceptibly. We don’t necessarily know what she has done until she has done it, and there it hangs in your head. What we find in the attic is vivid and incomplete, alive with pursuit, ‘reaching’.
Stadler is gifted, unique, elegant, raw. She is both reminiscent, and modern. Hers is an enduring talent and this collection is truly a gem of the small press. -Lynn Alexander
From Crow Reviews, The Review Section At Full Of Crow

Maybes and Mights

Just got back from a week on the Maine coast, which is just a beautiful, amazing place to visit. I posted more pictures on my facebook page. I'm not one to do that often, but I figured they might inspire somebody to go explore the area. Maybe somebody out there will want to see it for real. Maybe I will start posting pictures. Maybe I will start doing all kinds of things I don't take the time to do: simple things, fun things, easy things. I share a lot about what I work on but very little about what I do when I am not working on things. Maybe.
I noticed something kind of disturbing about the way I tried to cram a million things into every day. I have "time panic".

What if I don't get back? What should I be doing? Why can't I sit and be present anymore? I'm always thinking about the next thing. I am ruining things with layers of other things, unrealized but looming. The perpetual imminent.

Heading to New Orleans this week, then tending to more on the "to do" list. Then California! I'm excited. I have a lot of things to be happy about, I have a lot of things to look forward to. I just need to slow down, apologize if I drop a few balls, and so on.

MUST #10

MUST #10 is done, details at the new MUST blog here. It was definitely cool to get so many submissions and inquiries about it! I have a lot of material for upcoming issues of MUST so if it didn't fit in this one, there will be others. The next one is MUST #11 "Anatomy". Email content, questions, etc. to lynnalx@gmail.com.

If you would like a free copy of MUST zine, send a mailing address. Thank you for supporting this project!

Time For A Vispo

Going to try the Weekly Vispo Challenge, info here, starting with 6/28. Happy to see John Moore Williams as a participant (See Sin Tax) as I came to explore some of his work through a series of related events starting with reviewing [+!] at Crow Reviews for Calliope Nerve and culminating in the discovery of some other works, good works, interesting works.
 I'm still working on a series of five asemic paintings that require prolonged periods of neglect as there are glazed layers with embedded wire and the glaze takes a long time to set.
 I added some metal flecks and scrapings to the glaze on the last layer and wish I had thought to do that to the one I worked on before. If I add it now, it won't have the depth that makes the technique so interesting to me.

I will be posting more projects, calls, general things over at ARTERIALIZE and hope to get the word out soon about the mail art calls.

Working on a response to a mail art call related to city experiences, the urban scape, architecture, etc. I decided somewhat randomly to focus on Scranton, PA after visiting a friend there this week. It isn't a "city city" but I think from a population point of view it qualifies. These days Scranton seems most closely related to the t.v. show "The Office", but it has a pretty interesting and diverse history.

MUST Microzine: Submissions, New Blog, And Issue Editors

In addition to the discussion and updates at The Sphere, MUST Street Zine has a blog now where you can find out about submitting, distributing, editing an issue, and getting copies either in print or PDF formats. MUST has been around for over a year and thousands of copies have been sent out all over. If you want one, just send me an email. I will be editing issues 10 and 11, and hopefully finding a guest editor to take on issue 12. I am gearing up for some small press events so I am going to kick up the print run on these. lynnalx@gmail.com.