at dinner with classmates
some of the students in the residency with Ana Castillo
Ana Castillo and Lizz Huerta
Oh what life! I've been up to my ears in inspiration, consternation and love. I had my residency with Ana Castillo this week and what a week it has been. I really haven't shown my novel to anyone for criticism and after working with Ana this week I feel I am on the path. I know what I need to do. As exhilarating as it has been I am also a little bit scared. I didn't realize how many layers there are to this process of writing. We had two one hour meetings and I spent a lot of time writing in-between them. What a labour of love and pain it is going to be, no doubt.
Things here are always emotionally intense. We joke, are you a second day crier or a fourth day crier? because inevitably the crying will come. I don't cry here but I do get anxious and have problems sleeping. I know what comes next, the VONA decompression. When I get home tomorrow I will most likely get the blues since I will be away from the people I have been being nurtured along side of the last 12 days. I'll weep a little, sleep a lot and be in a daze for some daze.
I've met some fascinating people this week. I told a friend of mine who interviewed me for an article she is writing about VONA that I feel I have always known a lot of the people I've met here, I've just been waiting to meet them. There is an energy here that is rare. Everyone is supportive of each other but we also party. We laugh until our stomachs hurt and we also cry like babies. The faculty is accessible and always available to discuss writing, life or the new fabulous shoes I purchased on Haight Street.
The other night I had dinner and drinks with Adam, who was my very first boyfriend when I was 15. It was really great to see him, we are essentially the same people we were 15/16 years ago. Adam is a very talented artist. When we were dating I was in high school and I was writing a lot. Adam was always very supportive of my work and encouraged me to show it to other people. I did and was encouraged by those people and my confidence in my writing really grew out of that. I told him that this week, that he was very important in my development as a writer and he influenced the way I saw myself as an artist and creative human being.
I've done an obscene amount of shopping up here as well. Haight has a lot of great vintage stores and I went a little crazy getting my shop on. I love clothing from the 40s and 50s, I feel my body looks best in those elegant lines. I bought three vintage dresses, a gold vintage top and a hand painted Mexican circle skirt. Also, a couple of pairs of shoes. *sigh* B (I miss B!) mentioned to me a couple of weeks ago that my spending habits have gotten a little bit out of control lately but whatever. My new fabulous shoes will make walking this new path a little easier since I will be so dang confidant in them.