Saturday, January 1, 2011

When I moved away to go to grad school, I started a daily photoblog. I borrowed the format from a writer in Chicago who was taking stock of the break-up of a relationship. I can't remember how I found his blog, but it meant a lot to me during a time when I was sleepwalking through a break-up. Every day for a year, he posted a photograph of something quotidian and wrote about it - brief missives of heartbreak and heartbroke that together formed this longitudinal portrait of Moving On.

I didn't manage to be as funny, and my confessional style ended up embarrassing me and complicating my relationships. At the end of nine months, I'd had it with my public navel-gazing and canned the thing.

It wasn't much but it was the most honest, time-intensive, and complex creative project I've ever undertaken. First-person essays can make a body feel pretty self-important sometimes, but it is the most natural way for me to write and I'm going to keep doing it. Every day. For a year.

I'll never learn! Here goes 2011.

(For New Year's Eve, my buddy Matt constructed this three-foot-diameter glitter ball from papier-mache and slowly lowered it from the second story of his apartment building using a dubiously secure pulley system. This, champagne bottles sabered open with knives, and bottle rockets sent sailing into nests of power lines - and everyone went home with both eyes. Auspicious!)

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