joni abilene

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Month: May, 2012

Story Acceptance

I found out yesterday that my story, “Change, Perception, and the Perception of Change,” will be published in Front Porch Review this July. I’m really happy about it. I wrote Change last summer but let it sit in a notebook for almost a year, for no particular reason really, I just didn’t have an ending and knew I’d come back to it sometime. Turns out the ending is what sold the piece. It’s a nice feeling, and if I had some wine I’d celebrate.

Now my mind turns to all the other stories I have out on the market. Not to be greedy, but I sure wouldn’t mind hearing more good news. In my wildest dreams a watershed of acceptance would appear in my inbox, but that’s just dreaming and I know it. Still, one big sale would make me a happy gal. Do you hear that Universe?



I always wonder if it’s fair to love one character over the other. In a way they’re like children: born from me, developed by me, sent into the world by me. Then I must allow them to be picked apart by an editor who may change some of their lingo in favor of  a more sophisticated sound, or perhaps a more universal appeal. My poor, simple characters with their views of small town life and broken relationships that are like knotted threads. They’ve endeared themselves to me, and I love them all. But one does lie closer to my heart. I think of her when I go about my daily chores, when I’m depressed, when I need a laugh or little bit of inspiration. Pepper Rollins. There, I’ve said it. I love her more than the rest. Her humor, her willingness to endure, her mothering ways, her maturity yet ignorance toward realism—the kind that hangs on her ankles and which the rest of us can see, but would never tell her. She’s witty and kind; voracious, yet starving. I love her.

I sit here waiting to be published, yet I could only love her more for never being known by any other human.

Soft Serve

I don’t live in Arizona, but if I did, and if I needed birth control or a pap smear or ANY OF THAT OTHER STUFF, boy, I’d be out of luck. Also, if I looked like an illegal, and was driving around without my blonde wig and sunglasses getup, I might be in trouble. All because some tax payin’, oh wait, non-tax payin’ folks who are tired of trying to sign jobs bills and stuff like that, don’t want to see their hard-earned taxable (in a certain bracket) income used for sexually active members of the human race who just happen to be female.

But I live in Kansas where it’s still okay to have a female reproductory system (for now), but I can’t get a grant for my writing because all the arts funding got flushed down the loo, and now some fast food joint manager is managing the arts council. Yay. Not that I have anything against fast food places or the people who work there. Maybe a new grant could be issued with a coupon for a free twisty cone with every MFA.

I think it’s a real good idea to strip society of any chance it has to succeed or make wise, informed decisions. That way, we can suffer and think real hard, like dogs with our nose in feces, about what we’re really doing here on earth. Never make a mistake, never be bad. It’s the new American way.