ICYMI: #TwoMoonsChat

This past Wednesday I did a thing. My first twitter chat. Lauren Cherelle of Resolute Publishing and Black Lesbian Literary Collective (BLLC) was kind enough to host and she asked me some great questions.

I know not everyone has twitter and that’s okay. I still wanted to share what transpired during the chat. So below you’ll find the tweets mapped out in order as the questions were asked. It’s almost like being there. There are two things that you should know before you begin: 1.) Question 4 is no where to be found on twitter. 🙂 🙂 I swear I have searched, hashtag queried, and scrolled all up and down twitter. Based on my answer that somehow survived, the question had something to do with why all my protagonists in Two Moons were woman. 2.) Question 8 and answer have also gone AWOL. And I don’t remember what the question was at all. LOL

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*Question 4 is missing

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*Question and Answer 8 no where to be found 🙂

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I enjoyed talking Two Moons and writing and answering questions It’s nice too having one-on-one with another writer. Thanks, Lauren. And Thanks to Michelle for asking a question and interacting with us (and for reading the book <3).

It’s Publication Day!

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Today is a very special day! It’s publication day. Two Moons is out in the world being magical, black, and queer as all get out.

I can’t wait for you all to hold it and read it and find yourselves in it.

You can get a copy from BLF Press or booksellers like amazon. Also, if you’re in North Carolina Saturday March 24th, I’d love to see you at the book launch. It’s being held at the Raleigh LGBT Center (324 S. Harrington Street) from 6pm-8pm. There will be a reading, discussion, some book signing, and cake! What could be better? Come on out!

Special thanks to everyone who helped me and who worked on Two Moons. It means so much to me to know y’all and to have your brilliance touch these stories. I’m forever grateful.

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Women are powerful.

 

 

When I Was A Tree

Happy Tuesday! Here’s a poem I wrote back in 2012 about being a tree. The changing leaves make me so happy and introspective. I took these pictures of my neighborhood while walking my pup and couldn’t resist gazing up at the leaves as they transformed.

When I was a tree
I talked with the sky
and the stars and the clouds
and other trees.
I felt the breeze roll over
my branches much like
I feel it on my shoulders
now but different still.
When I was a tree
the spongy bouncing of a squirrel
tripping from limb to limb
would make me laugh and squirm-
it tickled so. But I never dropped a
single one.
And growing such delicious
fruit to feed all the neighbors
ahh, yes. The feasts were delightful.

When I was a tree it seemed
I could do so much more.

When I was a tree
I was a better being.
I was better.

 

 

Krystal Smith ©2012-2017

Writing Does Not Have to Be (Nor Should it be) a Solitary Endeavor

As someone who enjoys and craves her solitude writing is the perfect activity for me. I can write or think about writing anywhere, anytime. I don’t have to rely on another person to write the words for me. It’s not like some activities that have multiple people involved.

It can though. That’s what I’m learning and completly embracing. How can I need my alone time and want collaboration at the same time? Easy. In a word it’s all about Community.

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Sitting down to write is definitely, more or less, the part of writing that requires you to “work alone”.  Other people can be in the room while you write, you can even engage with them, but the thoughts and words you put down are yours until you’re ready to share them. You have to figure out how the story goes, the who, what, and where.

That is not to say that’s all there is to writing. Your writing community includes workshop and writing partners, your draft readers, your editors, and the folks who support you. (I even like to include the folks I read as a part of my writing community. Their interviews and insights help me too. If they’re willing to share their experience, why not use that to my advantage?) Think about it, writing involves so much more than just writing. First and foremost writing is reading. But how do you choose what to read? Maybe you take a suggestion from an avid reader you know, your librarian, a popular blogger, or a friend. In doing this you’ve just engaged in community.

Writing is also critique. Getting feedback and alternate perspective from your peers. Hearing someone else talk about your writing breaks open the bubble where you think you have it all figured out. It introduces new ways to think about your story. Whether you end up using that is up to you.

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Writing is open mic night at your local coffee shop or bookstore where you get to share your voice with intent listeners. This sets the stage for you to give an audience an experience.

Writing is showing support to other writers at their readings and signings. Not one of us can do it alone.

As much as I absolutely need my time I also need other writers and this community. It can be lonely talking to the characters you create (sometimes they pout or ignore you). I’m constantly reminding myself to get out of the house and engage with real flesh and blood people.

You should too.  The community is there so acknowledge them, interact with them, and let them help you grow as a writer.

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Putting Words into Action

The West End Poetry Festival is taking place

Oct. 18th through Oct. 21st in Carrboro NC

If you’re around, check it out!

 

 

What Books Make the Writer?

Did you ever read Bridge to Terabithia or Tuck Everlasting? What about The Phantom Tollbooth? Any of the Ramona Quimby books?

I did. I remember reading all of those books. While some of the details of what goes on in those stories are hazy, I remember how they made me feel. Adventurous, brave, curious. I couldn’t get enough. I wanted to “do that”, create worlds and stories that readers just didn’t want to put down.

It’s funny. All I’ve ever wanted to do is write and I’ve managed to do so in some way for a while now.  I’ve been lucky, besides the time I got caught writing on the living room wall with a red lipstick, that my love of reading and writing has been praised and encouraged.

I know that I write because I truly enjoy it. I feel the most like myself when I’m actively putting words down to figure out what’s happening or could happen in a story. Writing is also therapeutic and healing to me.

But when did this love turn into the thing that I must do? When did it get serious for me? Was it gradually or all at once?

Recently the Lit Hub article The Books That Made Your Favorite Writers Want to Write came across my Facebook timeline. Writers like Sherman Alexie and Zadie Smith know the exact book that made them want to be writers. How cool is that? Something locked into place for them and they knew or decided that they wanted to “do that” too.

The last few days I’ve been wondering which book(s) made me want to write. Was it Ramona Quimby, Age 8? Onion John? Maybe a short story from the anthologies I read in high school. An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge, maybe? Was it poetry in college? Nikki Giovanni’s Ego-Tripping, perhaps?

At this point it would be nice to know what tipped the scales for me, but I don’t think it really matters.

I’m writing. I am a writer.