Thursday, February 16, 2012

Science-Inspired Art

Stacey Printz, a choreographer who has created work inspired by honeybees, directed me to this article from the San Francisco Chronicle which discusses her bee-related piece as well as some other pieces inspired by scientific topics (like string theory). I sent Stacey an email last week, and she sent a friendly reply and said she'd be glad to answer some questions.

I think the best idea might be to think of writing some bee essays in the size/format of my Teeny Tiny zine as this seems like the most low-key and fun way for me to go about a project.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

A Long-Neglected Task, and Some Research

I've been meaning to add a page to my website with links to published nonfiction clips, and I finally did this last night. It's a pretty simple page, but hey, I'm pretty simplistic in my web-design skills.

This morning, I sent a query to a publication I haven't written for before, and we'll see how that goes. But if you never send a query, nothing new ever happens. I haven't sent a query in ages. The gig with EDGE fell into my lap via a craigslist ad; I didn't have to query--I only had to answer the ad.

I'm looking at different ideas for writing about bees and conceptualizing these ideas as article-sized pieces, so I'm also trying to think of possible markets for these articles. A weird thing about nonfiction contrasted with poetry is that with nonfiction you can actually conceive of a market for your work whereas with poetry it's more that you write the poem and see if maybe later it seems like it might be a fit for a certain magazine where maybe a couple other poets and maybe a couple of friends of yours might read it.

I did more research regarding Jonathon Keats and his Honeybee Ballet, and I also found an item on a choreographer who created a dance piece inspired by the dance of bees. And did you know there was a Nobel lecture in the 1970s on decoding the bees' movements?

It's interesting to me that we use the word "dance" in describing the movements that bees use to communicate; it kind of seems anthropomorphic of us, but at the same time, what other words are there to label communication through movement? I thought about sign language, but does "language" fit what the bees are doing when they move their bodies to indicate to other bees where, for example, to find a nice cache of pollen? The Nobel lecturer does use the word "language," so maybe both this word and "dance" are useful.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

New and Improved?

Since I started this blog, I've only posted poems, but lately I've been writing a little nonfiction again, and I thought I'd expand the scope of the content that I post here. I used to write and publish nonfiction articles and reviews pretty regularly, and I've been getting into that again as I've written four reviews for an online publication called EDGE, most recently this review of Don Quixote at Pacific Northwest Ballet.

I also have an idea for a larger nonfiction project about honeybees, which would combine personal experience with research and interviews, and maybe a road trip or two for good measure (gotta get out and visit some of the honeybees of the western states). In talking about the project with my friend Mimi, she suggested I consider looking at the ways that bees have inspired art projects, and this morning I happened upon a project someone wrote about a few years ago called the Honeybee Ballet. Well, I think there could be an article or two to write about bees in art, and thank you, Mimi, for that train of thought.