Although these last nearly two years have provided little inspiration or motivation to create new poems, the not-writing has given me ample time for editing and organizing what I’d written before. I had some individual success with some of those reworked poems and got some acceptances in some more journals. Most exciting, though, is that one of the manuscripts I put together became a book earlier this month. Middle West Press officially launched Forces on October 12. Working with my publisher and all the focus on turning my manuscript into a book came at such a perfect time. I was feeling a bit drained from trying so hard to bring special into being what often feels like being trapped into my home. I had something to be excited about, and I received an end-product of which I’m incredibly proud.
The poetry collection reflects on all the forces that push and pull on my life, sometimes with me and sometimes against me. How sometimes I push or pull back, sometimes offer no resistance; how sometimes the forces are balanced, sometimes unbalanced.
You can find Forces here: amzn.to/3AsC25R
You can read my publisher’s press release here: Poet Explores Life in Balance & Tension with U.S. Military (middlewestpress.com)
Keep an eye out for future collections, too. I’ve been busy editing away and putting together other manuscripts as well. Plus, the excitement over Forces has energized me to start writing new poems.
Putting the collection together also helped me come to peace more with what life has brought these past 20 months. Last year, when I started homeschooling my daughter, we both cried for the first couple weeks. Change was so hard because we both wanted to resist it. Once we embraced it and stopped trying to push against our new situation, we realized how much fun we could have learning and exploring together.
We loved both ended up loving 2nd grade at home so much that we’re doing 3rd grade at home this year, and plan to homeschool until we move to our forever home when my husband retires in three years. In kindergarten, my daughter was bullied by kids for her speech impairment and short stature; in first grade, we had her moved from her class because her first teacher that year told us at the parent conference that my daughter’s stutter took too long for open-ended questions, so she just asked her yes and no questions.
Without bullies and impatient/unempathetic teachers, my daughter’s confidence and personality has blossomed. When she does return to public school in the future, she’ll come with a shield of confidence. It’s been a morale and confidence boost for me as well. Military life forced me into to leaving teaching, and the pandemic brought it back to me. It’s just now instead of teaching English composition or literature to five classes of high schoolers, I’m teaching all the subjects to one elementary aged kid.
You can find my other books here:
Uniform (Aldrich Press, 2016) – Uniform: Stice, Lisa: 9780692667019: Amazon.com: Books
Permanent Change of Station (Middle West Press, 2018) – Amazon.com: Permanent Change of Station: 9780996931762: Stice, Lisa: Books
Desert (Prolific Press, 2018) – Desert by Lisa Stice – $8.95 : Prolific Press!, Better Publishing Through Innovation