Today, I attended Jax by Jax, a literary arts festival designed to bring awareness to Jacksonville’s growing literary culture by showcasing writers who live in Jacksonville, writing about Jacksonville. This event was the first of its kind.
The festival organizer, a local college professor, worked with a variety of businesses located in a historic, semi-urban area of Jacksonville known as Riverside. These businesses agreed to host artists, usually two and mostly writers, by giving them a space to read samples of their own writings or those in their literary magazines in twenty-minute increments. They would then allow ten minute breaks for the next author to prepare while the audience purchased drinks or food or meandered to the next venue to check out a different group of writers. The event lasted only three hours, and could have been longer. This model was beneficial to both artist and merchant as it created foot traffic for the merchant, and provided exposure for the writer.
Overall, the event was inspiring, and even though I was unable to see every reading and was too shy to really talk to anyone else, I took away a great sense of hope for the growth of the arts and entertainment culture in my hometown and pride in the quality of talent that resides here.
Who knows, perhaps one year, I will be the one reading my pieces to the audience, inspiring a want-to-be writer to embrace her creative side.
We are a dog loving family. We have four dogs; a Rottweiler, a Bassett Hound, a Beagle, and a German Shepherd. The Beagle and the German Shepherd are both under one and a half years old. It can be quite chaotic in our house at times.
Today, we took our German Shepherd, Freyja (pronounced Fray-ya), to a friends house to play with their German Shepherd puppy, Stella, who’s a few months older. I was a little worried at first, Freyja had never played with anyone her own size and never on anyone else’s turf. Freyja isn’t the best behaved pup in the sandbox, she tends to bully her Beagle sister around a bit and doesn’t realize that she’s a 75 pound bundle of fur and energy.
We introduced Stella and Freyja to each other slowly, in the back yard, keeping the leashes on. They seemed to be respectful of each other and there were only a few times when snarls and fangs were exhibited. After about ten or so minutes we unleashed them and eventually they got comfortable, their tails started wagging, the frisbee started flying, and happy pups were running around the yard. Freyja chasing the frisbee — Stella chasing Freyja.
All in all it seemed to be a successful morning of socialization and spent energy. A nap was definitely in order when we got home, after she said hello to all her sisters of course.
It was nice for Freyja to get out and play with a dog her own size. Hopefully we can make this a regular thing.
Today was election day. It was the first time in fifteen years that I didn’t have to send in an absentee ballot. I didn’t wear my sticker, I chose instead to keep it on it’s plastic backing tucked safely away in my wallet. It’s a funny thing, it’s just a sticker, but it means so much more, it connects you to others across the country who also exercised their right to vote.
If you chose to vote today, I hope you wore your sticker proudly. If you decided that you didn’t want to vote today, I think that’s okay too. It’s your right.
Blogging is more difficult than it looks. Adjusting your blog theme, making sure it looks just right, while also trying to find interesting, post worthy things to write about is much more challenging than it sounds.
How do you keep your blog fresh? Do you have any WordPress hacks to share?