I know it looks like I’ve given up on blogging. It would be a fair assumption, something about the months since my website has had anything more than press-release kinds of sound bites and announcements about readings or publications ; ) ! It’s not that I’ve gotten bored with blogging or forgotten about it, far from it. I’ve spent hours in the bathtub, at the park with my dogs, and on the subway trying to figure out what I’m actually *doing* moving forward with my blog. All this thinking has resulted in very little blogging for the past few months, but it was necessary for me to figure out what I wanted my presence of a blogger to grow into moving forward.
For the last several years most of my blogging has revolved around queer youth homelessness and experiences connected to the editing, release and subsequent touring with the Kicked Out Anthology. it’s truly been a magical few years. Kicked Out holds an important piece of my heart as my first book, and it will always be a piece of my work, but it is not all of my work. Kicked Out has given me a foundation, and it was somewhat difficult for me to grapple with thinking about what it would mean to form an identity as an author after Kicked Out. I confessed to my twitter/Facebook (where I’m much better at staying present and current than I have been on the blog) in the last weeks about how I had been uncertain if I could/would ever be able to love another book after Kicked Out, and that it’s rally deeply hit me now that I am utterly head over heals in love with my novel Roving Pack that will be released this October. Knowing that I am actually loving my novel is a really good feeling, I shouldn’t have worried – it figures that if I can be most comfortable as being poly in my relationships that it should be the same with my books 😉
I’ve stayed away from blogging for a little while because I knew that I needed some distance from Kicked Out and to give myself time to move away from a space where my primary creative/professional identity is as the editor/curator of that magical book that is so much bigger than myself, but also to figure out how to come back with an increased complexity that leaves room for all of who I am personally and creatively, without turning my blog into simply a reflection of my daily life- nothing wrong with that, and I’m sure some readers would love the 25,000 photos I take of my dogs, or my rumination on picture books and broken toys I find on the streets of Brooklyn, but not the kind of blog I want to be writing all the time (that content i feel is better for facebook/twitter). Right now, much of my creative focus is on my novel Roving Pack which will be here in October!!!! I’m just coming off of a week-long intensive focus on the book, and am in the midst of final line edits and gleefully enjoying the submissions that are starting to come in for Leather Ever After.
It’s not that I don’t want to be talking about queer youth homelessness, I do, but I’ve felt a little trapped too. There have been times in the past years I worried that if I blogged about other things, folks might think I took queer youth homelessness less seriously, or that it was no longer a focus of my work, or…. I don’t even know. Ultimately I don’t want to feel limited by my blogging, and I want my blog to be a place that can grow to include a more complete picture of my work.
In the time I’ve been away from blogging,I’ve thought a lot about the threads that run through all of my work and how that will continue to be reflected in the blog. Chosen/created family in many ways is the foundation for the work that I do, and also the thread that runs between all three of my books (I still need to pinch myself when I say that I have 3 books – and really there is a 4th in the works but that’s much more of a little tadpole of an idea right now than the very realness of the others). So you might be asking, what *exactly* will Sassafras be blogging about? Good question. I don’t have all the answers yet, but what I do know is that in the coming weeks and months you can expect a lot more writing exploring queer family and how that connects to this novel that has captured my heart for the past couple of years. I’m also really eager to share with all of you more about the process and experience of writing, editing and preparing to release these two new books. More than anything, I’m excited to be back as a blogger and looking forward to seeing the way this space grows.