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Gerardo Mena

Gerardo Mena's Blog


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October 3rd, 2012

Posted on October 3, 2012 at 4:36 PM Comments comments (0)
I had some great news the past few days.  One:  I found out I won the national veteran writing contest in the poetry category and Brian Turner gave my winning poem a great review.  Two:  I was accepted to be a part of Ninth Letter's Online Feature for graduate students.  Three:  My wife and I finally came up with a name for our soon-to-arrive unborn daughter that is due in six weeks.
I have a lot to be excited about.  I think I'll celebrate.

August 14th, 2012

Posted on August 14, 2012 at 11:50 AM Comments comments (4)
A couple new updates that I think are amazing.

1.)  The new school district that I'll be teaching in is amazing.  I have never been greeted and treated so warmly and positively by an entire group of people in my life.  I can't wait to be a part of this great tradition.

2.)  Ten minutes ago I was named as a finalist in a large lit journal's writing contest.  One in a million and all that jazz...but it still feels great to be chosen as a finalist.

3.)  I've been writing up a storm.  Thank goodness.  Sometimes I get scared that I've lost my creative muse, and then I realize that it's actually just that life has been kicking me in the teeth, and then I get five minutes to myself and create something, and then I feel better, because I still feel like a creative person  :)

July 20th, 2012

Posted on July 25, 2012 at 12:45 PM Comments comments (3)
My first Master of Fine Arts week-long residency in Port Townsend is finally winding down. It'll be nice to come home, but wow, for the first time in a long time, I'm surrounded by other addicts to language and stories. It's comforting to not have to explain to people "why do you write so much" because we all share this same need and/or calling to create. 

I highly recommend finding an opportunity to surround yourself with people that are passionate, motivated, and a little bit crazy, not just so that you achieve your dreams, but also because there is a strength in numbers and a collective motivation. The realization that there are others out there just like me is comforting.

Now the hard work begins. Next residency in six months. It's time to put on the blinders and turn up the awesomeness.

June 12th, 2012

Posted on June 12, 2012 at 5:18 PM Comments comments (382)
Holy Moly!!!  I just got accepted into Goddard's amazing Master of Fine Arts program for poetry and I was offered a high school teaching job.  What an honor.   Looks like all those years of hard work and very little sleep are finally paying off.  

May 29th, 2012

Posted on May 30, 2012 at 12:34 AM Comments comments (0)
So I was a part of that national DOD think tank for streamlining combat medicine the past few days. Being in a room full of nationally famous trauma surgeons was quite a different experience. It was very humbling when they all looked me in the eye and asked me my honest opinion on certain procedures. Once we all learned how to work as a team (on day 2), the meetings went smooth. I love being able to give back to a great cause.

Also, I found out I'm a finalist for a huge national book contest.  I'm not allowed to say which contest or publishing house yet, but's big.  Fingers crossed.

May 22nd, 2012

Posted on May 22, 2012 at 11:14 PM Comments comments (6)
So I was walking around Barnes and Noble the other day and found a copy of Best New Poets 2011 in the poetry section. I read through it, even though I've done it a hundred times by now, and found my poem. And then it hit me, "Holy cow! My words are in Barnes and Noble!!!!" Granted, it's not "my book" or anything, but I still picked up a book and found my name in it. It was a weird feeling of accomplishment.

March 22nd, 2012

Posted on March 22, 2012 at 2:53 PM Comments comments (0)
Wow.  Just found out that I was a finalist for the "2011 Best of the Net" award, and that I received second place in the "Gemini Magazine Poetry Competition."  So blessed.

March 19th, 2012

Posted on March 19, 2012 at 12:32 PM Comments comments (3)
Holy cow it's been a while since I posted.  My apologies.  I'm neck deep in grading 9th grade essays as I'm currently doing my high school student teaching semester.  I'm still involved in the poetry scene, having just done a reading at Orr Street Studios for their Hearing Voices series, which was a BLAST!  That was the warmest (and largest) reception I've received for a reading.  What a great time with great people.
Also, I just received news in the last few days that I'm a finalist for the Andres Montoya Poetry Prize for my war poetry manuscript, had a poem accepted by Louisiana Review, and had a poem accepted by Cream City Review.  Wow, after several months of silence, to have such a flurry of success is a great feeling. 
Now....those essays aren't going to grade themselves.  Back to the grind. 
Keep on rockin' in the free world.

Dec. 5th, 2011

Posted on December 5, 2011 at 9:07 AM Comments comments (0)
A Pushcart Nomination!!!!!  Holy cow...what an honor.  My first one.  Many thanks to Jennifer Bowles and all the other cool cats at the Medulla Review for believing in my work enough for the nom.  You guys are so awesome.

November 21st, 2011

Posted on November 21, 2011 at 7:47 PM Comments comments (2)
Great news!  Last week I received an acceptance from the Raleigh Review!  I had a great time recording my poem for their online site.

Then, today... I received an e-mail saying that I was accepted into Prairie Schooner's Digital Online project for a multi-media project I created a while back.  I love the fact that they're creating an online page dedicated to multi-media poetry, which is possibly the future (and maybe savior?) of poetry.  While holding a book of print poetry is nice, if you want to capture the attention of today's youth, or those with attention-span problems (like myself), multi-media is definitely the way to go.  

Happy Thanksgiving!