Mack at Fall for the Book in Fairfax, VA

Fall For The Book, the best literary festival in the world (what?), is starting, and many of my life roles come together! Here is a schedule of where I will be in the next week in official capacity as author, gallery curator, and small press editor.
Sunday, September 25, 3:00 p.m.
Sherwood Center: 3740 Old Lee Highway, Fairfax, VA.
Gazing Grain Press book launch for Brianna Low’s Drift, also featuring Kelly Lorraine Andrews
Wednesday, September 28, 3:00 p.m.
Fenwick Library, GMU campus, Fairfax
main reading room (2001)
Call and Response Artist and Writers’ Discussion
The gallery show, an annual exhibition from the School or Art and the MFA program in creative writing, is up in Fenwick Gallery (in the new wing, on the first floor, by the circulation desk) from today until October 30. This year we’ve put our collaborative show together in conversation with The 100th Meridian Project, an interdisciplinary arts and science performance, which will be happening on Thursday the 29th at 7:30 p.m. in Harris Theater.
Friday, September 30, 7:00 p.m.
Epicure Café, 11104 Lee Hwy, Fairfax, VA 22030
Poets Night Out with M. Mack, J.K. Daniels, and Nancy K. Pearson
This event means the world to me. Dream come true.
And finally, I will also definitely be attending ***PATRICIA HILL COLLINS*** on Tuesday the 27th at 1:30 pm in Research 163 and Natalie Diaz and Oliver Bendorf on Thursday the 29th at 6:00 p.m. at George’s in the Johnson Center (both on GMU Fairfax campus).

Mack at AWP 2016 in LA

I’ll be in Los Angeles next week for the Association of Writers & Writing Programs conference. I’m still working out where I’ll be other than these times, but here is my official list!

Thursday, March 31, 3 to 5 pm
Signing Theater of Parts at Sundress Publications bookfair table 1438

Thursday, March 31, 7 to 9 pm
City Tavern Downtown Los Angeles
735 S Figueroa St Los Angeles CA 90017

Thursday, March 31, 9 to 10 pm
Reading from Theater of Parts at
The Lexington
129 E. 3rd St Los Angeles CA 90013

Friday, April 1, 2:45 to 5:00 p.m.
Gazing Grain Press bookfair table, George Mason University booth 708

Saturday, April 2, 9:00 to 10:15 a.m.
Gazing Grain Press bookfair table, George Mason University booth 708

I’ll have copies of Theater of Parts, Traveling, and Imaginary Kansas with me. If you want to meet up, let me know!
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TRAVELING now available from Hyacinth Girl Press!

large-cover-travelingYesterday was Traveling‘s book birthday at Hyacinth Girl Press. It was a very fun day of celebrating this weird little baby of gender exploration here on Earth and in the greater astral plane.

I am beyond thrilled with the cover and design of this chapbook. Tess Wilson did the editorial work. She is amazing. Huge thanks to her and Margaret Bashaar. The book and cover design is by Sarah Reck, and the cover art is by Tristin Miller.

You can hear me read from the title sequence here. Sequences from the chap are available online at Menacing Hedge and Wicked Alice.

Traveling is now available for order!

http://hyacinthgirlpress.com/yearfive/traveling.html

“What Toast?”: Gender, Sexuality, and Language in the Poetry of M. Mack

Milquetoast has found his way into Tropics of Meta.

Tropics of Meta

grayscale milquetoast

Milquetoast, n.

a bland, timid, or ineffectual person easily dominated

from Caspar Milquetoast, character in H.T. Webster’s

The Timid Soul comic strip, 1924 to 1931

and later, Milquetoast the cockroach, purple crossdressing character in

Berkeley Breathed’s comic strips Bloom County and Outland, 1980 to 1995
And now, this.

What Toast?

When Milquetoast became a cockroach, he lost his mustache. He tried fulfilling this lack of apparent gender with a penchant for what he and many others understood as crossdressing, in a wig and an ugly green dress, but this became an occasional activity: the Christmas special, big fights or fancy dinners with Opus the penguin.

*

When Milquetoast was a man with a name given and not received, he longed for the silent middle syllable to assert itself in conversation. When given the opportunity, he pronounced it as the Spanish what or the English wuh? When folks called for Milktoast…

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Three poems from Imaginary Kansas at Melancholy Hyperbole

melancholy hyperboleThree poems from Imaginary Kansas, forthcoming from dancing girl press in spring/summer 2015 went up at Melancholy Hyperbole: Poetry About Longing on March 12. I love longing. Well, my poems love longing. Or, I’ve always said that Imaginary Kansas fragments and queers longing. So.

The micro-poems featured are “[In this one, I imagine myself as a],” “Why can’t we be married and live in the farmhouse your parents bought on a whim?,” and “Undressing in front of your photograph in the evening.” These are some of the tiniest fragments in the project and, especially in the case of “Why can’t we…” some of my (terrifying) favorites. I’m really excited by the format of Melancholy Hyperbole, which invites direct commenting from readers. What a thrill!

Knoxville mini-tour: Pop-up Poetry, Monsterworks Workshop, SAFTA Reading Series

This weekend February 6 through 8, Sarah Ann Winn and I will be on a mini tour of Knoxville, Tennessee thanks to Sundress Academy for the Arts and Sundress Publications!

On Friday, we will participate in the Dirty Laundry First Friday Reception at Paulk+Co. The event features the photography of Diane Corey, community arts projects from KnoxKnowHow and Breaststrokes Knoxville, and, of course, pop-up poetry from SAFTA.

originalOn Saturday, we will give a writing workshop at SAFTA. In Monsterworks: Hybrid Genres and Revision, we will explore collage, remix, and a little bit of book arts to revise stuck projects in any genre and to create new pieces. We did a mini-sode of the SAFTAcast to talk about the workshop and…other things. A lot of other things.

On Sunday, we will join Artress Bethany White in the SAFTA Reading Series at The Birdhouse.

This weekend is the launch of Sarah’s chapbook from Sundress Publications, Portage. My full-length collection Theater of Parts is forthcoming from Sundress in 2016. I’m so excited for this trip and to hang out with the wonderful folks of SAFTA and Knoxville!

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What Toast? Reprinted at Cahoodaloodaling

Cahoodaloodaling has published a themed issue entitled The Animal Becomes Us. The call asked for a wide interpretation of the theme, and I sent Milquetoast’s origin story, the preface piece of Theater of Parts. This piece was originally printed in Gargoyle, and I’m happy for it to share space here with other beasts, including a piece from Sally Deskins and Laura Madeline Wiseman. You can read “What Toast?” here.

Chapbook Imaginary Kansas forthcoming from dancing girl press

In Spring of 2015, dancing girl press will publish my chapbook Imaginary Kansas. This project has gone through many iterations, and I’m so glad that it has found a home with dancing girl. I’m a big admirer of dgp and editor Kristy Bowen, and I’m honored to be among the catalog of dancing girl authors.

Imaginary Kansas is a project that fragments and queers longing. It ruminates on heteronormativity and desire. Imaginary Kansas existed as an artist’s book object in an edition of one in the Call and Response exhibit Parallel Lives during the 2013 Fall for the Book festival. I’m excited to see its next life.

Interview at Les Femmes Folles

In the month of November, my friend and colleague Nicole Tong curated a series of interviews with writers at Les Femmes Folles: Women in Art and she was kind of enough to include me. LFF is a curated spotlight on women (ish in my case) artists in any media. Les Femmes Folles is run by Sally Brown Deskins, an artist I greatly admire, informed and inspired by Wanda Ewing.

Nicole’s series included myself, essayist and short fiction writer Kirsten Clodfelter, travel writer Amy Gigi Alexander, and poet Allison Wilkins.

Nicole and Sally were also kind enough to reprint one of my cable shopping poems, which Stirring: A Literary Collection has nominated for a Pushcart. You can read my interview here, in which I discuss gender and Gazing Grain Press and national parks and cable shopping poems and breaking systems down and:

http://femmesfollesnebraska.tumblr.com/post/104084653092/nicole-tong-interviews-poet-editor-and-fiber