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bloomThis is so cool.  From the article:

In 2003, a building housing the Massachusetts Mental Health Center (MMHC) was slated for demolition to make way for updated facilities. The closure was a time for reflection and remembrance as the MMHC had been in operation for over nine decades and had touched thousands of patients and employees alike, and the pending demolition presented a unique problem. How does one memorialize a building impossibly rich with a history of both hope and sadness, and do it in a way that reflects not only the past but also the future? And could this memorial be open to the public, not as a speech, or series of informational plaques, but as an experience worthy of they building’s unique story?

To answer these questions artist Anna Schuleit was commissioned to do the impossible. After an initial tour of the facility she was struck not with what she saw but with what she didn’t see: the presence of life and color. While historically a place of healing, the drab interior, worn hallways, and dull paint needed a respectful infusion of hope. With a limited budget and only three months of planning, Schuleit and an enormous team of volunteers executed a massive public art installation called Bloom. The concept was simple but absolutely immense in scale. Nearly 28,000 potted flowers would fill almost every square foot of the MMHC including corridors, stairwells, offices, and even a swimming pool, all of it brought to life with a sea of blooms. The public was then invited for a limited 4-day viewing as a time for needed reflection and rebirth.

More photos at the link. 😉

As someone considering an MFA, this article was an interesting read.  In particular, this:

There was a time that I thought books were written by going off alone to a cabin in the woods. I pictured myself at a desk with a view of the Bitterroot valley and some coffee in a jar, and I think, in this fantasy of me the novelist, I was also a man. It took interacting with a ton of other writers to realize one does not learn to do a thing alone in one’s head. Why did I think that I should be able to, without any training or fellowship or mentorship, write fiction? Oh right: self-reliance.

chantwood-magazineI’ve written all kinds of scraps or writing for years. Plays, poems (very bad poems), short stories, unfinished novels. Along the way, I found it difficult to take myself seriously. I still find it difficult. Was I really a writer?

Many would argue that being a writer is a state of mind.  That particular moniker shouldn’t be tied to status, or milestones, or other turning points in the path writers follow.  I’ve heard from many established writers, both famous and less so, who claim that they still wake up some days feeling like an imposter.  I can relate.

Nonetheless, it’s inevitable that we should mark out some occasions of worthy of celebration, of indicators of forward progress.  Getting published is no doubt one of those places to take note.  So, I’m very proud to report that I’ve been published.  Yay! 😀

It’s a little short story I wrote entitled “Our Number Dimished.”  It was included along with a lot of other worthy work in Chantwood Magazine‘s March Issue.  You can check it out HERE.

Found on the internets:

A professor stood before his class of 20 senior organic biology students, about to hand out the final exam.

“I want to say that it’s been a pleasure teaching you this semester.  I know you’ve all worked extremely hard, and many of you are off to medical school after the summer.  So that none of you gets your GPA messed up because you might have been celebrating a  bit too much this week, anyone who would like to opt out of the final exam today will receive a “B” for  the course.”

There was much rejoicing amongst the class as students got up, passed by the professor to thank him, and signed out on his offer.  As the last taker left the room, the professor looked out over the handful of remaining students and asked: “Anyone else?  This is your last chance.”  One more student rose up and took the offer.

The professor closed the door and took attendance of those students remaining.  “I’m glad to see you  believe in yourselves,” he said.  “Each of you gets an A.”

 

I find this highly motivational. It’s a good description of where I’m at now and where I’ve been for quite some time – and why.

Happily, I recently (over the last several months) came to the realization that putting in the hours, getting down the words, finishing pages, was the only way forward. This confirms that idea.

Whew.