Tuesday, November 09, 2004

Recovery, What's On, MFAs?

I'm feeling much better today. Thanks for the commenters who expressed concern about my vertigo. I did a bunch of self-healing, therapeutic things last night (like I said I would, eh?): massaged the bone behind my bad ear with warm sesame oil (it made my whole ear feel warm and tingly); gargled with hot water with salt; drank cinnamon/chamomile tea, an Ayurvedic remedy for tinnitus; worked on some pressure points in the back of my head; etc.

And, hey, it worked! I woke up this morning with almost no ringing in my left ear and very little vertigo. Success! But just to be safe, H. told me to stay home and rest up some more. And you know that I ain't tryin' to get vertigo on BART on my way to Oaktown. What a mess that would be!

I spent most of today resting up, reading a bit, and doing more self-healing techniques for my ear. I also watched an opera film on video--Mozart's Don Giovanni--just out of curiousity (my local library has a great video collection); some of the music was stimulating and beautiful, but I have to admit I fell asleep about 40 minutes into it. And then I watched another installation of the Ken Burns Jazz documentary series, which put me in a jazz mood. So now I'm listening to Jeff Chan in Chicago, a solid album put out by Asian Improv Records, which also puts out Vijay Iyer, a fresh jazz pianist.

And I spent some time today starting to fill out applications for MFA programs in Creative Writing. I'm still toying with this idea, despite my friend J. clowning me a while back about my anti-academic sentiments. Part of me really wants to do it, feels like I really need the structure to kick-start my writing career. I've been fairly disciplined in my writing practice, but haven't sent much out for publication.

Part of me wants to follow some advice that Bino Realuyo gave me a long time ago about taking a different writer's path, without--as I think he put it--the 'crowning glory' of the MFA.

And then, I've started to wonder whether, if I do go for the MFA, I should do a concentration in fiction or creative non-fiction? The latter I've mostly thought is a trendy thing, not a serious literary concentration. But I'm starting to have different thoughts now. Writing this blog has made me realize that I like writing non-fiction; and even my poetry and fiction is, at its best, non-fiction of sorts.

Any advice from out in blogland? What do you all think?

Oh, no, I can hear the ear-ringing returning...keep sending those healing vibes my way.



Anonymous said...

i just sent h. with some potential writing collaboration stuff for you. make sure he gives it to you. :)


bino said...

theres MONEY in non-fiction. and yes, you can turn all your blogs to essays. i judged a non-fiction northeastern states grant a couple of years ago, and there werent many entries. it was SO EASY to choose. i was invited to judge a local state grant for FICTION, and i refused cuz they wanted me to read 500 manuscripts. im not crazy. i asked how much money they would pay. $500. whats that? a buck a 25-page manuscript? im not crazy. but NON-FICTION-- do it. non-fiction books are easier to sell anyway. you can sell based on a synopsis alone. (i have an unpublished blog on MFA which i have decided to keep cuz it may cause another catastrophe in the blogword.)

Rona Fernandez said...

oooh oooh I wanna see yr blog on MFAs, bino! can you email it to me? ronagirl@hotmail.com. and you don't know how much yr email (you probably don't even remember it) to me years ago on flips abt the non-MFA route has influenced me.--RF