Monday, April 27, 2009
The Barnyard Goddess and Flying Monkeys
Continuing on with the theme I started on Friday, the Kentucky Writers’ Celebration spilled over into the weekend. It has definitely been a busy weekend for Kentucky writers.
On Saturday a few people from my writing group attended the celebration at Penn’s Store in Gravel Switch. Penn's Store is the oldest country store in America being run continuously by the same family. This is the same store that is famous for the Great Outhouse Blowout in the fall.
Although I have been a writer most of my life, I am still terrified to read in public. I have been pushing myself more and more because everyone says it will get easier – let me tell you, it doesn’t get easier! This weekend I was in good company, because two of my friends are as scared of public readings as I am, but my friend Tammy found a coping mechanism to help her.
Enter the Barnyard Goddess, stage left …
Tammy thought dressing as someone other than herself would help her get through her readings and she was absolutely right! Dressed in her blue jean overalls complete with gold glitter sprayed boots and a barnyard tiara, Tammy did a wonderful job of reading her great story “Ponies on the Patio” and two poems. She won the crowd over instantly and we were all so proud of her! You can check out some of Tammy's writing in her Advocate Messenger bi-monthly column, Hillybilly Zen.
Of course, the funniest thing of the whole day was when the “tornado” blew through the holler. The emcee of the event was Herschel, also a member of our writing group, and although he had been talking to the crowd all day, he waited to read his poems with our group. There had been a gentle breeze all afternoon, but just as Herschel stepped up on the stage to begin his reading, the wind started to blow like there was no tomorrow! I swear I saw an old woman on a bike with a little dog in a basket and I told someone, “If we see flying monkeys, I’m outta here!” The wind blew the microphones over, as well as the big umbrella shading the speakers.
And then the wind calmed back down just like nothing had ever happened. I know it wasn’t Herschel’s reading because this man has such a great voice – hell, I could listen to him reading the phone book and be enthralled!
We made it through the rest of the day – and yes, I did get up and read, although I read two poems instead of the longer story I had planned. I didn’t want to take any chances on the wind blowing me to Oz.