Monday, February 26, 2007

I'd like to thank the Academy...

A couple of months ago, I was thinking about my favorite creative nonfiction authors. David Sedaris, Steve Almond, Sarah Vowell, Pam Houston, to name a few. I applied to a conference in Minnesota--at Bemidji State University. They accept around ten people every summer in each genre, so I thought I'd give it a shot.

I sent off a piece of creative nonfiction, called "Mr. Hollywood Diet." It was about meeting someone with statuesque good looks at a party who was once an ex fat-kid just like me. A number of factors went into the demise what could have been between me an Mr. Hollywood Diet. It was Laundry Day, I fell down and my face was bleeding a tad, and there was the part when he told me (two hours later) he "kind of" had a girlfriend. (The rat!)

Upon submitting my story, there was a space to put a cover letter of some sort. After agonizing the past few months over personal statements and getting to know way too much about myself, I just can't take "talking up" another second of myself. Seriously. Enough already. I just want the writing to speak for itself. Plus, the battery on my computer said 0:02, threatening to erase my story out if I didn't just send it.

So I ended up writing something like: "Hello. I'm applying to be one of the writers for your creative nonfiction workshop with Steve Almond. I'm submitting the story "Mr. Hollywood Diet" which I wrote awhile ago and realize makes me seem like a huge loser. I wish I could tell you that has changed. Look forward to hearing from you soon."

Then my screen went black, leaving me to wonder if my submission had actually gone through. Until I received an acceptance letter by mail a few days ago to study in Steve Almond's creative nonfiction workshop.

So friends I'm headed out to Bemijdi, MN in mid June. And thank you, Mr. Hollywood Diet wherever you are, for leaving me with a broken heel and bloody chin on the corner of Haight and Ashbury, The Streets of Love. I just knew you'd be good for something.

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