Sunday, July 17, 2011

Pop Up But Do Less

I don't always make New Year's resolutions, but this year I decided to live bolder. Kind of vague, I know, but it's something I've thought about a lot lately. I used to have a lot more self-confidence but moving to Minnesota and attempting to make a go of this writing thing has made me question myself a lot. I guess we artists really are a fragile breed. So when my friend, Sara, asked me to go to Costa Rica with her, I hesitated a little. I thought about the money and the time I'd have to take off of work. But then I remembered my resolution and said yes.

Sara found the trip on LivingSocial, and if you get a chance to take an all-inclusive trip to Costa Rica (or even a non-all-inclusive trip), I recommend it. The ease of travel impressed me the most: the trip included all of our accommodations, breakfast, and transportation; most of the people spoke English, we didn't need to exchange money and conversions were a breeze, plus it is only one time zone over (they're on Mountain Time...although I'm guessing they don't call it that...) so no jet lag.  We ended up going during the rainy season, which lived up to its name, but despite the daily downpour we managed to pack a lot in.

Monday, July 11, 2011

An Interview with Ryan Van Meter

Ryan Van Meter’s collection of linked essays, If You Knew Then What I Know Now, was published by Sarabande Books in April. His essays have been anthologized in The Best American Essays 2009 and the Touchstone Anthology of Contemporary Creative Nonfiction.

In If You Knew Then What I Know Now, Van Meter writes about growing up gay in the suburban Midwest, about gender and masculinity, and coming out. With poetic language and profound empathy, the book essentially examines how we learn to love.

Van Meter recently visited Minneapolis from San Francisco to read at Magers and Quinn as part of Gay Pride week and generously took time out for a conversation with me about this collection.