It’s nice to meet you, anonymous Internet user! My name is Em—Em because there are many Emilys and slightly fewer Ems—and I’m going to be interning with The Paragon Journal this summer. It’ll be my pleasure to help promote new and emerging writers here, and I’m so excited to get started. But first, some info. I mean, you have no idea who I am! Where’s the credibility in that? Well, to answer the question you never asked, the one that goes who on Earth is this Em person and why is she writing to me? I’m gonna plop out a little bio.
I’m an English major at Dickinson College, and I’m thinking of picking up a creative writing minor. My writing specialty is poetry, probably because of my short attention span and affinity for making up words. I’m also a bit of an academic. There’s really nothing I love more than ripping American culture apart via pen and paper. (Well, I might love coffee more, but that’s not very unique so let’s go with ripping culture as my Favorite Thing Ever™.) Other things I love include cats, parenthesis, failing at volleyball, semicolons, ecofeminism, standard colons, and mixing teas. I also love coffee, as I already mentioned. I am literally writing this from the corner of my hometown’s only coffee shop, and it’s glorious.
In the long run, I want to build a scholarly career around analyzing the relationships between gender, spirituality, and literature. In the process, I’ll probably go into teaching, although my future plans fluctuate daily between that and publishing. Regardless of what I get paid for, I want to have a place in the literary community. It’s really important to me that I see this big, beautiful network of artists continue to flourish. No one person can make that happen, but if everyone person on this planet contributed all the effort it takes to lift a finger, we could raise up whatever the heck we’d like. This is my finger for the literary community. I’m lifting it in the nice way.
In all seriousness, literature has done and will continue to do so much good for people. Writers make the ugly beautiful, the beautiful ugly, and we break things so they can be healed. Furthermore, there is a sacrifice in this. Things must be given up, offered up, sanctified. I leave you with two poems on the subject, although I have to warn you that both can be a bit nauseating. Making art is gory, and that gore leaves spots on Juliana Baggott’s “Dear Critic.” That same gore absolutely soaks Galaway Kinnell’s “The Bear,” which, though wonderful, is not for the faint of heart. These poems capture the artistic process without once using the words “pen” or “paper,” and they are masterful.
With that, dear anonymous Internet users, I bid you farewell for now. May your days be filled with creativity, chocolate chips, and absolutely delicious weather patterns!