Escaping to the Woods

View from my cabin in the woods.

A couple of weeks ago, I escaped from the routines of my everyday life and disappeared into the woods for four days. As the video above explains, the intention of the trip was to shape a small writing retreat for myself. I packed up some pens, notebooks, my laptop, and printouts of a poetry project (along with some books and art and mediation supplies).

The goals of the retreat were low-key:

  1. Disconnect from social media, the internet, and other distractions that fill my time with mental clutter.

  2. Rest, relax, and rejuvenate through reading, walking among the trees, and meditation.

  3. Write or create things, if I feel so inclined.

Going in, I wanted to put zero pressure on myself to meet any specific word counts. My time was completely open for me to utilize as I pleased. Ideally, I would write and create a few things (maybe finish some more poems) — but if I ended up doing nothing more than kicking back reading books (such as Sarah Kay’s gorgeous No Matter the Wreckage), then that would be okay, too.

Ultimately, this retreat turned out to be exactly what I needed in that moment. The mixture of work and ease was a blessing — and I achieved more than I thought I would be able to achieve.

By which, I mean to say, I completed a poetry project.

Read the rest of the post and/or watch the video.


I’m perfectly chuffed to announce that my book Twelve, published by Interstellar Flight Press, has received two award nominations from members of the Science Fiction and Fantasy Poetry Association (SFPA).

A new episode of the New Books in Poetry podcast is up, in which I was able to speak with Carl Marcum about his new book A Camera Obscura (Red Hen Press, 2021). We had an amazing conversation, in which we spoke about his journey into poetry, nature, aspects of faith, and how the language of science and poetry intersect.

For Once Upon the Weird, I compiled a noted why I loved playing Resident Evil: Village

Good Reads

"We’ve all sat in front of the blank page, cursor blinking, anxiety spiking, coffee cup needing a refill. To writers, honestly there is nothing more terrifying than staring into that emptiness, into all that untapped possibility," explains Stephanie M. Wytovich, who then offers some helpful rituals to help conquer the blank page

Ruchika Tulshyan explains why we need to stop telling women they have imposter syndrome:

"Even if women demonstrate strength, ambition, and resilience, our daily battles with microaggressions, especially expectations and assumptions formed by stereotypes and racism, often push us down. Imposter syndrome as a concept fails to capture this dynamic and puts the onus on women to deal with the effects. Workplaces remain misdirected toward seeking individual solutions for issues disproportionately caused by systems of discrimination and abuses of power."


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