Summer has arrived in London along with fresh publications. My first published poem is out now in Issue 7 of Door Is a Jar Magazine. It’s wonderful moving beyond my usual academic and art historical writing. The poem is, as most are, personal. It relates to a mental health struggle I experience which results in stress nightmares. The poem explores one recurring nightmare and the anxiety tied up with it. I think everyone can connect with the idea of being hard on ourselves on behalf of another, even when he or she has been gracious to us.
On the academic side of things, “Alienation and Beauty in Medical Photography” will appear in Vol. 41 Issue 3 of the Journal of Visual Communication in Medicine, out in July! This paper was created from the talk I gave under the same name at the Royal College of Physicians in Edinburgh earlier this year. It’s always a pleasure to turn a talk into a paper and refine and explore ideas with a critical eye.
I’ve also been dipping into helping other writers. I’ve been providing editorial feedback for an artist submitting to the Outwin Portrait Competition. I’ve always loved working with artists, either as a reviewer, model, or writing exhibition text, but this is a new area I’m excited to explore. Any artists wishing to get in touch, please do so through my contact page, I aim to respond within a week, usually 3 days.
Finally, in my effort to move into children’s writing, I have continued to send my picture book series to literary agents. I was lucky to get very positive feedback from an editor at Bloomsbury, which has helped fuel my positivity and helped me choose literary agents to contact. I have also finished the first book in an Early Reader series, which has some interest from a publisher, though I have to keep things quiet until final decisions are made. While all of this is very positive and exciting, I’m not stepping away from writing to rest on any books already out there. I’m editing and tweaking a few more picture books and finishing up an Upper Middle-Grade fantasy/adventure manuscript. While it’s frightening to spend so much time on a passion that is not yet published, I can see that this is where my future, energy, and excitement lies.
Looking ahead this summer, I’m still getting my children’s writing out there. I will also be briefly in Oxford for a mix of vacation and research and leading “Story Time” on Fridays at the local library, as well as volunteer with the London Libraries Summer Reading Challenge! It’s a wonderful way to encourage kids to find stories they love and remind them that reading is fun! I am only helping out, so if you want to know more about your local library and it’s involvement, click on the previous link for the Summer Reading Challenge.
Have a great summer!