Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Sumbmission: theme American scum bags

This is right up my alley. How about you?

AMERIKAN SKUMBAGS" (anthology) Art by Henry Avignon; collaborative literary texts selected and edited by Michael Annis Howling Dog Press, Publisher; forthcoming 2011 i. Submissions Submission period: December 11, 2010 through January 21, 2011.

Submit your work via, either included in the email body or as an attachment, to Michael Annis, at The email's subject line should be: “Skumbags submission.

Include author’s name and contact information. Submit only your own work, not work by others. Works must be original; plagiarized works will be discarded. Quotes from other author’s works must be cited. Although previously published work is acceptable, preference will be given to unpublished work.

If a work has been previously published, the author must state that it has, giving details as to when and in what publication. Submissions can be in the form of poetry, short creative non-fiction, or short essays. ii. Amerikan Skumbag collaborative art by Henry Avignon To view the artwork by Henry Avignon created for the anthology, see the link on the Facebook “OMEGA online literary magazine” group page, or go to Henry’s website at the following address: iii. Anthology Overview What is an Amerikan Skumbag? The simplest definition might be "one whose predatory beliefs, instincts, dealings, actions and way of life exploit, damage, embarrass, cripple or otherwise wreak havoc on the people of the nation, other nations of the world, or the biosphere of the planet we all inhabit." In this forthcoming anthology, the art of Henry Avignon will be collaborated with literature by many poets and writers to indict specifically by name and deed not only historical Amerikan Skumbags, but also some of those who still lurk among us. It will be the writers' job to compose a work that is based on fact, and tells the sad, pathetic, and/or egregious tale of things the Skumbag has said or done to qualify him/her to be included in this anthology.

AMERIKAN SKUMBAGS will serve as a "rogues-gallery"-in-print to enlighten and inform readers as to who has severely tarnished and defaced the character of Amerika, and just how they have gone about it. It will be a literary testimony and artistic indictment against those whose motives and actions bear witness to their sociopathic, psychopathic endeavors. To have their work considered for publication, the writer’s job is to be specific, composing a work about an individual or corporate entity that has defamed this nation. Writers and poets will need to name their subject, whether as part of the title, or in a dedication, or in the body of the work, or named in a footnote at the end of the piece. General railings and rants against American corporatism or imperialism will not suffice; we, the editors of AMERIKAN SKUMBAGS, are looking for specific indictments targeting such skumbags as Monsanto, Exxon, Wal-Mart, Sam Walton, the Walton Family, James Dobson, Ken Lay, Condeleeza Rice, or Karl Rove, for a few examples. Are we being “unpatriotic?”

I think not. Is it more patriotic to continue to cover up a Skumbag’s horrific deeds with grandiose mythologies, thus ensuring those horrific deeds will be repeated, praised, and lauded, while the citizens of this nation remain oblivious to the grim realities as their children strive to emulate them? To one degree or another, we could all be worthy of the designation of 'skumbag', either through acquiescence, co-dependence, unintentional collusion, or direct pre-meditated actions, but the true Amerikan Skumbag, like Skumbags of other nations, finds his/her mission in life to be concerted attempts to fulfill every greedy desire and ambition, regardless of the consequences to those he/she preys upon, and regardless of the destruction of the nation.

Amerikan Skumbags can be leaders, followers, pimps, Puritans, drunkards, teetotalers, Tea Baggers, tree huggers, sexual predators, ascetics, atheists, "men of god," male, female, educated, ignorant, aristocrats, middle class, bourgeoisie, proletarian, conservative, liberal, rich, poor, contemporary or historical figures (such as Jay Gould, distinguished as "the most hated man of his time"), and may occupy any number of callings, disciplines, careers, or belief systems. From the Mayflower to the launching of the space shuttle, Skumbags have cheated, stolen, murdered, thieved, raped, conned, pillaged, made war upon, lied, usurped, coveted, harangued, and savaged their way to infamy. They take the form of human beings or non-human entities (such as Monsanto Corporation, whose unified bevy of Skumbags have sought to control world agriculture through eliminating all competition from small farms and individual farmers, thus propagating their buy-from-us-or-starve strategies). Amerikan Skumbags don’t care what happens to you or me, or our children or grandchildren, or the kid down the block, or the kid down the well.

An Amerikan Skumbag would sell your mother to the Chinese to give body to their paint or flavor to their dogfood. So, you answer your own question: are we being unpatriotic? The primary mission of this anthology, if it is a mission, is to expose the terrible havoc and suffering created by the Skumbags resulting from their greed and underhanded dealings. The anthology will reveal how individual Skumbags have attempted to either compromise or destroy many of the documents created to avert the disastrous political, religious, cultural, social, and economic catastrophes that have haunted “civilization” through the centuries.

Those documents that the Skumbags have so cavalierly dismissed or sneakily torn up in their quest to sate their bottomless pocketbooks and ravenous egos would include the American Bill of Rights and the Universal Rights of Man, among others. Their actions have engendered an ever-increasing stratification between the classes of rich and poor, haves and have-nots. That stratification is consistently found to produce inequalities and hardships for the have-nots, resulting, for example, in babies being born in alleyways, serial victims of sexual psychopaths (likewise religious psychopaths), families being thrown out of their homes, and human beings warehoused in prisons and mental institutions. Perhaps now more importantly, the ensuing climate catastrophes that are imminent have been created, certainly, by many nations under many political and economic systems, but our anthology is focused on Amerikan Skumbags, with the intent toward cleaning our own hypocritical house. When we claim to be in support of initiatives to avert global warming, yet our government and corporations simultaneously shut down universal actions attempted by other nations, it is a lethal double-standard. As we continue supporting corrupt politicians and a corrupt government, it becomes clear that we don't really give a rat's ass about some little island nation that will become a submarine death ship after the imminent rise of the oceans.

As long as we give tax breaks and billion dollar perks to oil, gas, and coal millionaires and not encumber their irresponsible exploitation of the poisoning of the earth, we become conspirators with them in the destruction of the planet. Those billionaires would certainly qualify for inclusion in Amerikan Skumbags, as would the politicians and justices who continue to bail them out with public funds, and keep them above the law through rulings by a non-impartial Supreme Court that is obviously unfettered from any obligation to Constitutional law. We the people bear a share of the guilt in our election of the Skumbags, our support of them through "tithes" and offerings and political contributions, through our purchase of their products and ideas, and through the burying of our minds under massive organs of denial phallicly erected by corporate propagandists such as Rush Limbaugh, or Glenn Beck, while condoning selective revisionist history in textbooks that choose to immortalize Skumbags through contrived mythologies of heroism. All the foregoing only serve the sinking of the good ship Amerika beneath a tidal wave of national ignorance. The ignorance of his victims and unwilling collaborators is primary and most fundamentally essential to the Skumbag’s successful strategy of clearing the way for his acts of high criminality, which often should be further construed as treasonous. The Skumbag would Ponzi-scheme Fort Knox into giving him every last ounce of gold in exchange for trinkets and beads, and a future retirement village in the Florida Keys, if he could get away with it now, as he got away with it in the past when he first set foot on Indian lands and stole his way Westward. Without remorse, and often without legal consequences, the Skumbags have exploited and continue to capitalize on trust and ignorance, using any loophole they might find to further empower themselves while destroying their immediate surroundings, or while occupying distant lands where it’s easier to avoid public condemnation and judicial prosecution.

What does the Skumbag count on?—we the people continuing to immerse ourselves in meaningless tripe such as who's destined for the Superbowl, who's porking who on the daily soaps, whether the Russians can see Sarah Palin’s boobs from their houses, or whether Barack Obama’s birth certificate is real or fake.

Moreover, as the collapse of our doomed biosphere is now fully underway, we wander through mazes of imaginary "resolutions” and “remedies" to this catastrophic scenario via limp rationales such as "when Jesus returns, he will fix it all, and evildoers will be punished," which is a BELIEF, not a rational solution based on factual evidence or historical precedent upon which we can responsibly act. The Amerikan Skumbag loves this type of sub-intellectual churning; it gives him greater ground, greater latitude to continue his avaricious rampage. The Pat Robertsons of the world now own diamond mines and gold mines and other-peoples-life-savings because they have, with no moral or ethical reservation, swindled the desperate with such absurdist notions, knowing full well what they are doing, and who they are preying upon. That qualifies Pat Robertson, Jerry Falwell, and religious leaders like them, for inclusion in Amerikan Skumbags. In essence, Skumbags are only icons, symbols of who we are, what we have been (although American 'History' courses seldom teach it), and what we are to become if things aren't changed and radically so, within each human being.

Within this nation of human beings known as “Amerika” that continues to myopically focus on Wealth and Power, there exists an undeniable current to subdue and subject all others to the will of the sanctimonious Amerikan plutocratic mentality. While we, the mobbing people of imperialism who can barely see out from under the plastic masks and tin foil hats we regularly adorn, portray our good righteousness as the saving grace of the planet, beneath it all is a selfish, vicious Skumbag layer of desire for the mind-boggling accumulation of riches which might thrust us into the upper crust of the most affluent. [Reference Elias Canetti's "Crowds and Power," John Perkins' "Confessions of an Economic Hitman," Naomi Klein's "The Shock Doctrine," and the writings of Derrick Jensen and Noam Chomsky. All these works are relatively new, but in the scope of Amerikan history--at least a People's History [Zinn]—they remain profoundly relative.] Who do you consider to be an Amerikan Skumbag? Your selection, a literary piece wherein you recall, reconstruct and reassemble your nominee's character and deeds to prove them worthy of the designation (while disassembling the heroic mythos about them, if one exists), might end up in this forthcoming publication. Consider who in Amerikan history has contributed most to our anti-culture of death, poverty, desolation, greed, and psychic disease-mongering as dystopia, and set them down in a poem or short creative non-fiction or essay. For example, George W. Bush is a given ... as is Sarah Palin. But there are literally hundreds of Skumbags in Amerika’s history who have previously raised, and will continue to raise high the flag of disgrace and despair into the generations of the future.

Other Amerikan Skumbags certainly might include ... Joe McCarthy, Ted Bundy, Newt Gingrich, Jim and Tammy Faye Bakker, Dick Cheney, Alberto Gonzales, Alferd Packer, Jay Gould, Fred Phelps, Woodrow Wilson, Jerry Falwell, Herbert Hoover, George Armstrong Custer, Bernie Madoff, Eric Prince, Joe Lieberman, Milton Friedman, Ronald Reagan, J. Edgar Hoover, Benedict Arnold, Richard Nixon, Strom Thurmond, Henry Kissinger, Clarence Thomas, George Wallace, Lester Maddox, Lt. William Calley, Paul and Jan Crouch, James Earle Ray, Jim (People's Temple) Jones, Christopher Columbus, James Dobson, David Koresh and the order giver responsible for setting the fires that burned up the Branch Davidians; furthermore, there are enough corporate CEO Skumbags and Wall Street Banksters to empty the US Treasury—and this is just a partial listing; there are so many, many to choose from, with so many "evildoers" now and throughout Skumbag history

Let's all DIG DEEP. Just for examples, who were some of those Skumbags who ramrodded the brutal Salem witchcraft hunts and trials; who swindled the Indians out of their lands and sent them careening down the heartless, tragic Trail of Tears; who slaughtered the buffalo into near-extinction, leaving their carcasses to rot while selling off their pelts; who ordered the slaughter of unarmed Native Americans at Wounded Knee; who made deals with the Nazis to supply them with the equipment necessary to track the numbers of Jews burned up in the Holocaust; who called in the armed forces to beat, bludgeon, and kill American workers striking for bread and wages; who are those whose voting records betray their penchant for favoring the insurance companies, the pharmaceutical companies, the oil companies over the needs of the American people--which Skumbag is the biggest taker of corporate campaign funding and voting bribes? Who are the creeps that make life gloomy, miserable, unbearable for the many? If they’ve managed to escape the justice of their due, let’s get ’em now. After the final works of literature to be included in the anthology have been selected, artist Henry Avignon and editor Michael Annis will coordinate the literary work with Avignon's abstract artworks. Pairings of images to literature is their exclusive responsibility. You can view some of the artwork already created by going to Henry Avignon’s website, or by going directly to the link on the Facebook “Omega online literary magazine” group wall. There will be at least 100 art pieces/personalities selected for the publication. Henry Avignon works on them daily. iv. A note about the ARTIST & ART: Criticisms of Henry Avignon’s “Amerikan Skumbags” art series have already been lodged, requesting that he modify his work to be less critical, more “patriotic”, or reminding him that other nations of the world have their share of skumbags. Some armchair critics have requested that he abandon his series altogether, and that we furthermore abandon this project. Henry Avignon is co-producing a work of ART, and cultural PROTEST.

He isn’t required to moderate his thinking or his vision to satisfy the contrived necessity to be either civil, "just," or patriotic. A half-century removed from the horrors of European fascism, the American public stands back and admires Picasso's “Guernica,” offering effusive praise to him for his courage, his vision, and his artistic triumph in countering the propaganda of Nazism/Fascism. We do that in awe of an historical moment in the distant past—one man, a consummate artist, refusing to turn away or back down from the sinister and cowardly acts of atrocity that became the annihilation of Guernica—one man defying the deadliest forces the world had ever seen. Now Picasso’s piece has come to be recognized as a universal symbol of the murderous acts of war throughout the history of civilization.

Time has passed and the historical record bears him out as being not only of sound mind, but of impeccable character in deciding that his artistic protest must be created for the world to understand the magnitude of the terrorism inflicted on this small village, and the dire imperative for the human race never to go to war again.

Picasso did not moderate his view to assuage the demand for temperance that I'm sure was thrust upon him as he was creating Guernica, and after it had been completed and was displayed publicly. One might argue that Picasso's response was produced in protest of an actual horrendous event. Avignon's responses in his Amerikan Skumbags series are exactly that: responses to the actual conduct, mentalities, and tragic events that have come into being from/by those we are choosing to qualify and illuminate as the skumbags that our nation has cultivated and served. I stand in awe of Avignon's “Amerikan Skumbags” series as being one in accord with that of Guernica, even though he has not yet, and may never, achieve the stature of Picasso. But then again, perhaps future generations will look back on his work with much the same favor. ~Michael Annis, literary editor of AMERIKAN SKUMBAGS; copyright © 2010 through OMEGA/Howling Dog Press. All rights reserved. *** Art Medium is directed oxidation on various metal types: galvanized, cold press, hot press, carbide, mu.

Avignon believes Metal is an ectogentic extension of human flesh which means it represents an external / metaphorical evolution of our epidermal / biological system. He is stricken by the sheer emotional register of the captured impressions noting that metal is directly associable with psychology, our relation to mortality issues revolving around safety, protection, enforcement and power: will to survive in hostile human environments mostly out of civilian ability to control. Avignon believes metal is the under/ lynch/pin of the war machine, that it ensures survival for the most equipped / resourceful / wealthy / and stationed in life, not the fittest spiritually, or the most compassionate and reasonable, or the most innocent and exposed. Avignon believes metal is the skin of injustice.

And so he utilizes metal in much of his art, having developed processes that allow him to better direct (but never control) the violent and destructive event horizon that oxidation manifests. The works are cultivated over a period of time and each work represents a moment captured in time as the volatile process is ongoing through to extinction of all life oriented coloration to a deathly black char.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Sumbmission deadline in 72 hours!

Saltwater Press is a new online literary journal. They focus on work by underrepresented authors. There deadline is December 15th. Read the submission guidelines.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Short poetry sought

Accents Publishing, an independent press for brilliant voices (, seeks poems of up to 50 words for an anthology of very short poems, edited by Katerina Stoykova-Klemer. Previously published work is accepted if credited. Send submissions, along with short bio, in the body of an e-mail to

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

One Opportunity for PWD Poets

I'm submitting to this. If you qualify, you should submit, as well. Sheila Black and Jennifer Bartlett are putting together an anthology of poets with physical disabilities.

We are ideally looking for poets with physical disabilities, although we are not excluding submissions from abled-poets writing about a poet with a physical disability. The format will be 3-5 poems and a short open-ended essay (750- 1000 words). The essay should address how disability manifests itself (or doesn't) in your work. The essay can also discuss identity or anti-identity poetics.

Please send 7-10 poems, a short publishing biography (include your book titles) and an one paragraph description of an essay you would like to write to AND

Deadline July 1st. Also, email with any questions.

Please see the request and description below:

Yet our goal is not to produce a book that is strictly polemical but rather one that looks at poetry first. The spectrum of poets writing on the topic, especially today, articulate disability in specific and surprising ways. While the poets who make up this proposed anthology are poets whose aesthetic lens has been torqued or shaped by their bodies, the group is eclectic as fits the topic—for not only is each disability unique, but even within a single person the experience of disability is a dynamic one.

Some poets we plan to include, while forethinkers in the poetry world, are not known as “disability poets.” Rather, they came to have bodily differences later in life. Some are activists and heavily entrenched in Disability Studies. Others, while not activists, write about their singular experience, in ways that are formally and philosophically challenging. In addition, the poets included represent many different modes and movements in modern poetry. Part of what is so energizing about considering the current landscape of disability poetry is the degree to which thinking about disability enlists or engages viscerally many of the core concerns animating other poetry movements from the New Formalists to the New Sincerity to the Gurlesque. The mediations on the body and commodification, and on the very nature and being of beauty, that drive many of the poets in this collection are concerns that are not only universal, but also acutely urgent in our times.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

One Opportunity

If you are disabled or have a disabled partner consider submitting to the anthology on disability sexuality. Submissions are open ended! Deadline for Submissions now OPEN-ENDED! - SexualAbility Anthology's MySpace Blog |

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Two Opportunities

I don't have a manuscript ready, but maybe you do.

The Annual Dream Horse Press Poetry Chapbook Prize
Guidelines & Information for 2010

The postmark deadline for entries to the 2010 Dream Horse Press National Poetry Chapbook Prize is June 30, 2010. To enter, submit 20-28 paginated pages of poetry, in a readable font, table of contents, acknowledgments, bio, email for results (No SASE), and a $15.00 non-refundable fee for each manuscript entered. All manuscripts will be recycled. The winner will receive $500 and 25 copies of a handsomely printed chapbook. The 2009 winner was Jason Bredle for Book of Evil.

Multiple submissions are acceptable. Simultaneous submissions are acceptable, but if your manuscript is accepted for publication elsewhere you must notify Dream Horse Press immediately. Entry fees are non-refundable. Judging will be anonymous; writers' names should not appear anywhere on the manuscript. Please include your name and biographical information in a separate cover letter. Please be sure to include your email address.

C. J. Sage is the judge for the 2010 contest. Close friends, students (former or present), and relatives of the judge or the press owner are NOT eligible for the contest; the judge reads all entries and will immediately alert DHP if a close friend, student, or relative has entered. DHP will then disqualify that entry and return the entry fee.

The Annual Dream Horse Press Poetry Chapbook Prize entries may be sent, following the guidelines above, to:

Dream Horse Press
P. O. Box 2080
Aptos, California 95001-2080

Make checks payable to: Dream Horse Press

Last Man Anthology

The Last Man Anthology is a print publication dedicated to the best of catastrophic literature and poetry. The Last Man Anthology is a tribute to Mary Shelley and her novel, The Last Man. “The last man! Yes, I may well describe that solitary being's feelings, feelings myself as the last relic of a beloved race, my companions extinct before me." Mary Shelley, 1824.

Stories we'd love to see: the last scientist, the last doctor, the last knight, the last dragon, and the last cell phone. Submission e-mail:

Thursday, May 13, 2010

3 Opportunities for Writers

Accents Publishing is happy to announce its 2010 Poetry Chapbook Contest. Two winners will be selected one by an independent judge, Richard Taylor, and one by the Senior Editor and founder of Accents Publishing, Katerina Stoykova-Klemer.

Each winner will have his/her submission published as a perfect-bound chapbook and will receive 50 free copies, along with a $150 cash prize. Additionally, the winners will be invited for a featured reading at a book premiere celebration event. All contest entries will be considered for regular publication with Accents Publishing, as well. For details please visit

Umbrella: A Journal of Poetry and Kindred Prose, published by Kate Bernadette Benedict, has just uploaded its spring-summer 2010 edition. Along with poems on general subjects, the issue features poems of "gall." Umbrella will be reading light-hearted poems for its Bumbershoot annual until July 15; more info on the Guidelines page.


Exot Books, a high-quality chapbook press in New York City,
is publishing an anthology of sonnets in 2010. Submit as
many sonnets as you like to the editor, Mary Meriam, at
sonnetexot-at-gmail-dot-com. Previously published is OK. The
deadline for submissions is June 1, 2010.

One Opportunity

This doesn't work for me, but it might work for you. Good luck!



We invite moving and well-written stories, poems, and memoirs on the following theme:
What happens to our understanding of ourselves and our place in society when we make the decision, as an individual and as a woman, to commit ourselves to a different social structure from the one in which we were raised? We are especially interested in the experiences of women who have chosen to become U.S. citizens and the impact this conscious commitment has had on them and their families. Does it change what has felt to us to be natural, unquestioned, in our own upbringing and development - or that of our daughters?

Some of us come to the States intentionally, desirous of and prepared for citizenship, some of us find ourselves here because we love someone else (parents, sibling, or spouse) who has that clear intention, or we come because we are escaping something worse and have been placed here, willy nilly, as refugees or economic migrants. Whatever the route to this decision, at the point we become a citizen we are making a choice and a commitment that are now uniquely our own. We not only engage with but are committed to the promotion of certain values that may fit us as poorly as borrowed clothes or as close as a second skin.

Here are some dimensions we invite you to explore:
What were the key steps in your own journey to citizenship? Did some, or most, of them take place after you became a citizen? What changed in your thinking, your assumptions, your hopes and your goals on the way? What people and events had decisive impact on your choice to become a citizen?

What do you as a woman wish to preserve of the customs and social arrangements of your culture of origin and why? How do you reconcile these customs and social arrangements with the core American assumptions of individual equality and the inalienable rights of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness?

What makes you feel like a full American citizen with equal rights with native born U.S. citizens?

What makes you feel like a natural woman, in tune with your own deepest drives and priorities? Do these have anything to do with the values of the countries in which you have held citizenship? Are they in any way related to citizenship itself?

What have you learned about being a woman and about citizenship from your own mothers? If your mothers have made decisions around citizenship themselves, how has their journey been similar to, and different from, your own?

Who understands what you are going through? Who doesn't have a clue?
How, so far, have you used your vote?

Deadline: AUGUST 1, 2010
We make final editorial submissions on all submitted manuscripts only after the submission deadline.

Electronic submissions only.
Word or RTF.
Prose ≤5,000 words. Poetry ≤5 poems.

Payment in copies

Submit manuscripts electronically:

Monday, April 12, 2010

Two Opportunities


SOFFA Anthology Call for Submissions

The editors of a new anthology call for submissions on the experiences of significant others, family members, friends and allies (SOFFAs) of transgender and/or gender variant individuals. The feelings, emotional processes and experiences of those in relationships with transgender and/or gender variant individuals are seldom acknowledged. That’s why this anthology is so important as a resource and an educational book. This particular call seeks quality “think-alouds” that are reflections on the experience of being in a relationship with a transgender and/or gender variant loved one.

Our vision for the anthology is not solely focused on partners, but the transitional experiences of those in relationships with transgender persons.

We are interested in personal narratives, stories and reflections from significant others, family members, friends, allies, co-workers, teachers, medical professionals and clergy who are in relationships with transgender and/or gender variant individuals. Give us your inner dialogues, theories, practices, joys, coming-out stories, challenging moments and transformative events. We are seeking a multiplicity of voices tackling the intersections of relationships and transgender and/or gender variant identities with sexuality, race, religion, spiritual affiliation, socio-economic status, ability, etc.

We are looking for thoughtful and authentic responses of 1,500-6,000 words. Only respectful submissions will be considered; however, we expect pieces to document a range of experiences and emotions including confusion, joy, frustration, pain, happiness, identity struggles, fear, anger, anxiety and love.

Submissions must be sent as Word files with text in 12 point Times New Roman font and should be previously unpublished, 1,500-6,000 words in length and typed double-spaced. You may submit multiple pieces. All submissions must include a 55-65 word biography to appear in the contributors’ notes section if your work is accepted. No previously published or simultaneously submitted material without prior approval.

Please send submissions to Include your name, pseudonym if you have one you wish to use, address, phone number, email and bio you would like to appear in the book if your selection is chosen for publication. Put your name and the title of the piece in the subject field of the email.

This anthology is slated to be published by Homofactus Press in 2012. Final contributors will receive a one-time $25.00 payment and one complimentary copy of the final publication. Final contributors may also purchase books at a 40% discount.

The deadline for submissions is December 31, 2010.

The editors and longtime friends, Cameron Thomas Whitley and Eleanor A. Hubbard, Ph.D. have extensive personal and professional experience with the transgender and/or gender variant community. Cameron, who transitioned during his undergraduate career, is currently seeking a graduate degree in sociology at Michigan State University. While working on his undergraduate degree at the University of Colorado, Cameron founded a student support/social group for transgender and gender non-conformers. He has served as a board member for several non-profit organizations advocating for transgender awareness and equality. Utilizing his passion for social awareness and trans issues, he has presented at several national conferences and been published in a collection of anthologies.

Eleanor A. Hubbard, a retired Senior Instructor in the Department of Sociology at the University of Colorado at Boulder, has taught about trans and gender variant issues for over 20 years. She was renowned for her courses relating to the intersections of sex, gender, sexuality, race and the media. She is also the Founder and CEO of DiversityWorks, providing training and consulting on diversity issues in the workplace. Eleanor and Cameron joined forces to create this resource as they both recognized a gap in the literature to help significant others, family members, friends and allies come to terms with the transition or gender non-conformity of a loved one.

Grant Opportunity

The Northampton Arts Council, Inc. is once again running a special, locally supported arts grant round. This spring the Arts Council will be awarding up to $20,000. This money was raised at last summer's Transperformance 19: LookStock and the recent Four Sundays in February '10 series. These grants are available to area writers, painters, photographers, sculptors, musicians, filmmakers, schools, and all other creatives and arts organizations for projects held in Northampton.

Guidelines and applications are available via our website: and can be downloaded as PDFs. Using the PDF application, one can complete it on a computer. (No more struggling to find a typewriter!) Hard copies of the guidelines and applications will be available in Northampton at the Forbes Library, Guild Art Supply, Northampton Center for the Arts, APE at Window, and the office of the Northampton Arts Council, Room 5, 240 Main Street.

The Northampton Arts Council will hold an informational meeting regarding the grant process at the Dynamite Space, Thornes Marketplace (basement level), Northampton on Wednesday, April 28, 2010 from 6pm-7:30pm.

Introduction: We're all in this Together

I never knew that a poetry website could make me so angry that I’d feel compelled to make a blog opposing it. But Planet Poet is just such a place I joined it about a week ago. Although they offer free membership, I was actually considering upgrading to a paying membership. It’s less than $100.00 for your entire life. Considering how much I like poetry, it seemed like a good deal.

The website is based on the premise that you earn points for entering contests, reading other people’s materials, maintaining a blog, and generally being a member of the writing community. You can spend points creating your own contests or having someone review your poetry. Again, especially for free this is not a bad deal.

The problem with the site that I begin to have is that I’ve found out that it’s not for the actual enjoyment and expansion of poetry as a pursuit or job. It’s all about making money for this one person. He doesn’t want you to post links to other poetry sites. In fact, you get in trouble if you do this. Therefore, I’ve decided not to become a paying member of his site. I assume it’s a him because his Internet name is PirateKing, but you can never tell about gender on the Internet.

At first, I thought I was only going to revoke my own membership and complain in my personal blog. But, as I learned at the Civil Liberties and Public Policy conference at Hampshire College this weekend, too often artists and progressives only rail about what’s wrong with the world. We never talk about what we would like to see instead.

So instead of complaining about this one person’s wrong headed artistic vision (in my opinion) I decided to start this blog creating the kind of poetry community I envisioned. That is one where you’re more than welcome to share any publication, website, grant, or other opportunity that you find out about. In this case, I truly believe a rising tide lifts all boats.

Sure, there may be a little more competition for a particular grant but if we all share resources we will all become better poets and better people. I don’t want to live in a world where I must guard my meager artistic opportunities from anyone else.

What we need is more arts funding and not fewer artists competing. If I win, I want to know I won because everyone had an opportunity to apply. That makes losing better too. At least I’ll know I lost to good people.

So I invite you and everyone you know to go on this sharing journey with me. If you hear about an opportunity, please post it in the comments. For my part, as moderator, I will try to review submitted opportunities in order to make sure my readers are not getting scammed. Of course, no guarantees. Buyer be ware. I hope that you will contribute to this site and tell your friends about it. Let’s work on making a world that’s less jealous and more open minded. We can do it if we all work together. An old organizer friend of mine used to say, “Let’s build a world we can all thrive in instead of a world only some of us can survive in.” I know poetry isn’t the biggest deal in the world with homelessness, student loans, and many other issues to deal with but it’s a place to start building the world we want.

Please post your own poems and opportunities here! Share and share alike.