Friday, February 08, 2008

Vote me a job: Victoria Library wants a writer in residence

The Victoria Library has decided to select a writer-in-residence and, wait for it, pay them $3000 a month to write (number of months unknown). Obviously with an opportunity like this, I honed up my CV, polished my reprints on articles of animal rights, disability, and sex (I have also been paid for fiction and poetry, if that can be imagined). Only it turns out that the Victoria Library has decided to determine this ala Big Brother.

Unfortunately that doesn’t mean you get to watch me compose sonatas in the shower on live TV. It means that the position seems dependent on Voting. Rather a unique way to find someone to fit the job but hey, I can groove with the flow. So, here I am, cap in hand asking that if you want me to read your writing, or give classes on writing (I have taught both at University of Cardiff and did an independent series on writing for LGBT authors) but, lets be honest, get PAID to write, then PLEASE click here. You will need to nominate me, Elizabeth McClung (of Victoria, BC), and give a brief reason why I would be good for the library of Victoria.

As surreal as it is that this job seems to be similar to being voted Prom Queen, this actually is my best chance to get a job which will work around my disability. So can you please vote, and tell others to vote and (I never said this) rig the voting. The voting closes Sunday, so please vote soon. And if I could just suggest, under “Why are you nominating this author?” here are some of the BAD answers (like don't copy and paste these!):

1) She’s paying me!
2) I’ve seen her half naked pictures on-line a LOT.
3) I stalk her, and now I know where she’ll be more often.
4) I’m her ex-lover but we’re friends now.
5) She swears a lot and talks about sex, cool!
6) She scares me, please make her stay away.
7) She’s sleeping on my couch and I REALLY need her to find a job and move out.
8) She be Better, good Writer, fer! teachin me, Lot o stuff, and, I Want her: to Help other peeple!!
9) I've been following her career since I called in and listened to her talking dirty to me during her phone sex days.
10) She seems to hate people, and a lot of famous writers are like that.

And how about this, for every person who votes (for me) and posts to say they have, they can ask me a personal question and I will answer it (if legally allowed). Sorry, I don’t have the job yet so information is the only bribe I have to offer.


cheryl g. said...

I voted for you of course. Do you suppose they'll check to see if I'm a BC resident?

Hmmmm... a personal question... where were you born?

Vote early and vote often!

Elizabeth McClung said...

Born: Ironically, in Victoria, before my parents moved away to Vancouver. The hospital I was born in had been turned into a old folks respite by the time I returned and now it is a set of luxury condos. Which is what most of the city seems determined to end up as.

Thanks for the vote!

lilwatchergirl said...

You taught at Cardiff?? When? About a third of my degree there, in the end, was made of creative writing classes (1997-2000). I didn't get the grades I wanted in that course because it was all bloody fiction and I am a non-fiction writer. There needs to be more awareness of the innate creativity of some forms of non-fiction, I reckon.

Hope you get this!

Elizabeth McClung said...

Lilwatchergirl: no, you have to VOTE for me, it doesn't matter if you live here, just Vote and then you can ask the question! True, they did focus on fiction a little too heavy. I did work with people with memoirs and non-fiction but most students were writing so many papers they were keen to do something "light" (oh, great, take the body of literature and reduce it to "easier than my History Paper")

lilwatchergirl said...

Oops, forgot to say that I'd voted for you. Wrote a nice little thing about the wonder of your writing and other reasons why they should have you. May have also reduced your writing to some kind of community service. Um. Sorry.

Yeah, I noticed the 'let's do something easy' from a lot of students on my course, too. Still, they tended to be the ones who didn't do very well. Mind you, neither did I, and I was more committed to that course than to any of the others I took... :S

Lisa Corriveau said...

I voted for you & so did my SO. It does seem an odd way to pick someone for the job, but good luck!

Here's my question: have you ever met someone in person after 'meeting' them in the 'blogosphere'? (Not trying to suss you out for a stalking target or anything... :)

Elizabeth McClung said...

Lisa: Yes, but only one so far, several others have made plans to meet but they have all fallen through but I have faith that I will meet more as time goes on - If my body could sustain the trip to Vancouver I am sure I would meet loads, but sadly, it cannot (or rather it can, but can't make the trip back). And the person I met has been a very positive experience, which is what my expectations are.

Lilwatchergirl: I didn't teach you, I was there later, but I know some of the people who probably did so I shouldn't dish or gossip in a public forum (you never know when that googling from an employeer is going to come back on you) - I do agree that they did not have a strong focus on non-fiction, though, I did do a section on travel and non-fiction article writing because I had two friends who did that in LA and so I know the mechanisms, as it were - though the internet is overturning a lot of that (the internet is like a "dial a writer" for specialty topics)

kathz said...

I just nominated you - I hope they don't mind the U.K. e-address. (Some people from B.C. are away on work, obviously, and use their work e-mails ...)

I can't think of a question just now as the cat is wrecking the house.

Ellie said...

I voted for you! I lauded both your fiction and nonfiction and described your writing as "art without artifice." I don't know whether I should be proud or ashamed of that line.

My question is: I read, somewhere that I have totally forgotten, that people can be divided into two categories -- those who only tell stories about themselves that make them look good, and those whose stories only make themselves look bad. (My best friend and I are perfect examples. Him: "Let me tell you about the great zinger I got in during an argument!" Me: "Let me tell you about how I fell over in tai chi class!")

So, do you think you are in the former or latter category? And which one is Linda in?

Anonymous said...

No question, just wanted to let you know that I voted for you and will be keeping my fingers crossed that you get the position.

Elizabeth McClung said...

Kathz: Thanks! Well, once the cat is settled and you think of one let me know.

Ellie: Most of the way I interact is in telling stories so I would say that I tell the stories which produce the reaction I desire (which probably would be seen under Good because the thing I want most is to be a good story teller) however, the stories I usually tell have some horrid zinger so I don't know, The last story I remember telling was telling one of my careworkers who is I think the president of the Christian union the middle ages use of the word "Onanism" from the man Onan in the bible - a long tale to come to, "So you see, there is a lot of masturbation in the bible" followed by an embarressed pause; Linda says I have a perverse need to be self destructive in my story telling. I'm sorry, I did try.

Linda likes disaster stories, whether she did them or she was there, definately likes disaster stories. Disaster at work, disaster on a trip, disaster in weather. And stories of me doing stupid things.

Anon: Thanks!

kathz said...

I've thought of a question. Can you give me a snappy definition of science fiction? - just to make it tricky, no more than six words. (Yes, I'm getting you to help with mu job - is that allowed? - I will cite you if I quote your definition, which I may or may not need on Wednesday.)

The cat has now gone out or fallen asleep. He just doesn't understand why I don't want him to rearrange the contents of cupboards or go for a walk on the cooker, knocking over anything that happens to be in the way. (He's still rather young. And I didn't plan to have a cat - he planned to have people and turned up.)

KateJ said...

Well, I voted for you too. I may not actually be a permanent BC resident but I have lots of family in BC - mostly in and around Victoria as it happens - and have in fact used the library! So I'm voting on behalf of my cousins and their kids. If you win then I'll definitely come over to Victoria and listen to one of your lectures or whatever... that's a promise.

Lisa Harney said...

I voted for you.

I don't have any questions right now, though.

tornwordo said...

I nominated you! Plus it's free, you don't have to answer a personal question : )

Ruth said...

You've got my vote!

Sue said...

I voted for you - I hope they have the good sense now to actually hire you!

Dawn Allenbach said...

I voted for you, plus I sent out a call to a bunch of my friends. Within an hour, I had three people email me back to say they voted, too. A couple emailed me what they wrote, so I'll forward them to you.

I'm sure more will vote as the weekend progresses.

Question: To be or not to be? Why or why not?

Dawn Allenbach said...

Add my favorite aunt to your list of nominators.

Elizabeth McClung said...

Kathz: I had to cheat and make an extra word: Fictional future possibilities seen through present realities.

Science fiction is almost always generationally based, which means, you go back to the 80's and when they talk about computers in the future they are Giant things inside of hollowed out planets. Go back to post WWI and science fiction is Germany living in a specialized underground nations (because WWI was all about digging), making new gases and other forms of warfare.

If I had to go for a longer definition Science Fiction is an attempt to understand some aspect of our culture or us as humans by projecting it into the future or the frission of another place (or as my writing mentor once said, "there is no science fiction...if you live all your life in Trenton, NJ and write about people on mars, they will act exactly like people in Trenton, NJ, since in the end, we only have our own mind to write from.) - Ha, maybe I will finally peg the six instead of seven words and come back to it.

Kate J: Thanks, but no question?

Lisa: Thanks, vote me into the Big Brother house...I mean the Victoria Library!

Ruth: Thanks...but no question?

Tornwordo: Thanks, but I am starting to feel that either I have told everyone too much already or there is something which provokes no curiosity about me.

Sue: Thanks and I second your opinion, though I would have used, "Hope they can overlook your eccentric tendancies" instead of "Good sense"

Dawn: Thanks to you and your friends. And good question, one I wrestled with for a long time (not because I am a Hamlet fan). I say to be, because to quote a person I respect greatly, "Humans are the only game in town." and so, one way or another, you are in the game, so I think it is better to go all at it even in ignorance and end up thrown baskets in your own teams' goal and have the crowd shout things at you then cower in the corner and hope it will all be over soon. I think that is why I get so angry at people like Fran or agencies or others (like this volunteer agency which has decided that I, unless everyone else must have specific doctor's notes and agree to pages of protocols because: "You are more serious and complicated medically" - does anyone at the volunteer agency have medical training or has an assessment been done? Nope, they are just going on "gut" and "common sense" which in the old days used to justify which sexes got which jobs and which races where suitable for which kinds of employment) - angry because they are trying under the name of "liability" or "caring" to carry me out of the game. Hey, Still Human, so I'm still playing! To Be!

Neil said...

Hello Beth, Linda and everyone else!

I voted for you too, Beth. Victoria Public Library needs someone like you, and the world needs to hear you. Well, in the case of the Internet, I suppose "hear" is a relative term, but I love "hearing from you" via your blog.

My Question: Which is you favourite Muppet? Optional: Why?

I think I disagree with your definition of S.F. While I agree that fictional universes tend to resemble the writer's "present day" (I love looking back at the Bell Telephones in "2001: A Space Odyssey"), there are things that looked silly at the time of writing, that have come true: the only example I can come up with at the moment is Dick Tracy's wrist radio. Oh, there's Arthur C. Clarkes Minisec in his 1975 book "Imperial Earth" that sounds like a calculator but works like a pda...

Okay, it's my stupid opinion, but I'm sticking to it. And now I have to truncate this and go play "Kill Dr. Lucky" with the rest of my real family. We'll leave a space open for you, Beth. :)

Dave Hingsburger said...

Well, I left a vote for you and mentioned your book and gave a testimonial about the blog. So, here's hoping.

Lisa Harney said...

I wonder what does make your case so complicated and serious - in terms of care - than a quadriplegic, or a severe case of cerebral palsy. Would they balk at taking care of people with those disabilities as well?

Is it the partial autonomic failures? degeneration? variable function? heat intolerance? lack of familiarity with your condition?

I don't see how they can justify that assessment as anything but "We really don't want to expend the energy to do what you need done."

Elizabeth McClung said...

Neil: Thanks for voting....for me! And in answer to your question, I suppose as a child/youth I was most attracted to Gonzo simply because he had the "if I can think it, I can do it" idea, often ignoring the fact that a) he had failed continuously on every other idea and b) that maybe no one had tried to jump 12 cars while juggling chickens for a REASON - he also in a strange way, is the closest personality I resemble for which Linda (who is Kermit, trying to keep everything together) I am a constant Trial as I come up, excited about something which will not only likely kill me but bring the whole production to an end.

Now I have a question: What is Kill Dr. Lucky? And I am hoping you won't tell me is the name of a chicken you own or where you get together and plan fake assassinations.

Dave: Thanks for voting! However your ringing faith of "here's hoping" seems more of my brand of faith and optimism than yours. I have found out that no one at the library really knows how the winner is picked as Sue Henderson is completely in charge, so whether there will be interviews or maybe a geniune house we are locked into and then voted out of.....I can only wonder.

Lisa: Well, pretty much YES on everything you say. Isn't it what we are least familiar with what we are also afraid of - in many ways I present similar to an MS patient, but there are very little restrictions or "serious" about getting a volunteer or an MS patient participating - at least not from an able bodied standpoint. However, you have someone who carries around oxgyen and has a diagnosis which sounds vaguely like mad cow disease and has the phrase DEGENERATIVE written in bold letters and I think the word "Liability" and "make extra care when she explodes, no goo lands on us" come up.

wyogrrl said...

"And the person I met has been a very positive experience..."

Why thank you. My mother would be proud and Sister Margaret Elaine would be very surprised. The good sister felt I was too much of a tomboy to ever have a positive impact on any girl. She was scandalized that I wore pants to school one winter day and called my mom to come bring me "proper" attire. A very old-fashioned dominican was Sr. Margaret.

cheryl g. said...

Hey Sis

I had a neuron misfire and used another of my nicknames on the previous post. You've probably figured out that wyogrrl and cheryl g. are one and the same. I have emailed a bundle of people to vote for you.

yanub said...

I voted for you!

My question: You've been granted the power to have just one universally enforceable law passed that will stand for all time. What will it be?

Or, if that's really too much, how do you like your hot dogs?

Elizabeth McClung said...

Cheryl: Thanks, and yeah, I figured out that you have many secret names.

Yanub: Thank you. The rule I would pass would require some sort of divine power but I think the pain we give in treating others is balanced by living their life for X amount of time. I can't wait for people to be reborn; have the office male chauvinist live a week as a female, being a manager but asked to bring "the guys" coffee, and have any idea ignored unless reuttered by one of "the guys"; same with homophobic bullies, racists, and those who tell people with wheelchair to carry around Lumber to get out and into thier home (no, not bitter) - I'm just saying, even if in junior high and high school, people knew by experience the consequences of thier actions, it might be a very different world. And quite honestly, I can't see how understanding each other better would be such a punishment in the long run.

FridaWrites said...

OK, I voted. Good luck. I always superstitious that my vote or what I say will do the opposite of helping, but then I remembered people have received jobs and awards that required a statement from me.

Marla said...

Done! I wrote quite the nice blurb on you, if I must say.

Neil said...

Hi Beth:

You asked about "Kill Dr. Lucky." It's a pre-mystery board game. Okay, I'll quote from the box.

"Why do all mystery games start just after all the fun is over?

"Kill Doctor Lucky is a board game about the fun that happens before the detective arrives. Everyone starts out with a motive to kill Doctor Lucky, and whoever can actually kill him wins. Bt he's not called "Doctor Lucky" for nothing."

The game comes with the board and cards you need. YOU supply a playing pawn/piece for every player. Borrow from your Monopoly game, and save money.

Rather than sell you a set of pawns, dice, pencils, money, counters, etc. with every game, the fine folks at Cheapass save you money by selling the boards, cards, rules; the things unique to that game. The counters etc, can come from anywhere. (We used Lego people last night for the pawns.) They can sell games cheaper that way, and maybe sell more games to you.

Enough advertising, though. I won't even mention; you'll find it on your own.

Cheers to Linda and the rest of you!

KateJ said...

Oh, I misunderstood, I thought I only got to ask a question if and when you got the job!
I'll take a rain check and ask it another time.

Veralidaine said...

I voted, though I was in a rush and couldn't pop in to say so at the time. What I did NOT write:

"You should pick Beth because if you do, romantic squirrels will flood in your windows and seduce the librarians with promises of heaps of peanuts."

What I did write:

I don't remember exactly but it wasn't that.

My question:




How did you and Linda meet? You may have answered this before I met your blog, but I bet there's a cute story here I haven't read yet.

alphabitch said...

I tried to vote, but nominations are closed, plus there is a strike at the library and your page link is down.

I guess you get to ask me a personal question.