The Penland Cabin

The Penland Cabin
Summer, 2005

Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Thanks, Phil, for helping everyone stay in the loop. And we do go way back, that's for sure.

From Waaaay Back

What a convenient way to catch up with all those who have wandered in and out of Woolson House over the years.  I don't ever remember Ginger Magarine going to First Friday, but she must have if Phil said so.  I do remember Darlyn's first First Friday.  She read a short story.  I remember Stacy Barton from a most wondrous poem she wrote that included (or had as its subject) Mary Magdalen-- and look at Stacy now!  Published in multiple genres.  I've seen Mary Burns in the recent past; she's one of the original FF-ers, and a superb writer.  I think I started going in 1998 or 1999 and compared to these people I'm starting to mention now, I'm a FF baby.  Where's Susan Martin of "Shamrocks" fame?  Susan, are you out there and still writing fab short stories?  Where's Sara Schlossman now that WMFE has gone temporarily (we hope) bonkers?  Such poetic prowess.  Where's Bruce, the retired judge who would, every once in a while, read something that blew us all away?  And Brian.  Brian, we know you're out there, because we're still getting your emails letting us know whether FF is on or not.  And then maybe not on.  And then maybe yes it's on again.  But we know you're there. ( And we know Phil is the ping-pong ball.)  Such happy memories, 



that we HAVE had FOOD and refreshments at least once.  Maybe twice.  At Christmas.  I remember bringing cold, spiked eggnog from ABC and some wine.  Three hours is too long to sit at a stretch without some culinary diversion.  Even if it's Hershey's kisses.  Or geez, a candy cane or a pop tart or something.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Yayyy -- A First Friday Blog!

Thanks for creating this blog and inviting me to post. I hope everyone joins in the fun, and I look forward to seeing what develops here!

Sunday, December 28, 2008

The Long-overdue First First Friday Blog!

Happy New Year! Who knows if this will work or not, but the idea is to have a central cyber-place to go to that is kind of like Woolson House. I'll get a picture of Woolson and put it at the top of the page, and we'll all know where we are. Between Lezlie Laws and myself, First Friday has existed a long time. Close to 20 years? Not bad for a little group with no formal membership, no dues, nothing formal going for it except, as they say at church, fellowship and, as they don't say at church, tons of writing!

Have you noticed that a lot of entities, not only around town but around the English speaking world, are called "First Friday"?! And I think Seminole CC in Sanford has a "Second Tuesday," founded by our friend Stephen Caldwell Wright and quite possibly being continued now by former First Friday-er Professor Ginger Magarine. Well, have you noticed that the hub of the literary world in Central Florida, the Scribbles newsletter, was invented and founded by hyper-energetic ubiquitous former First Friday-er Darlyn Finch -- I think it was an idea that was really born at First Friday. And do you recall that Poetic Logic on WMFE public radio (before being we hope temporarily halted this year) was hosted by two consecutive long-time First Friday-ers, radio man Ron Cross and the wondrous poet Sara Schlossman? Do you know that Infusion Tea, Naomi Butterfield and Urban Think Bookstore, separately and together, those fabulous Orlando literary scenes, trace to First Friday, and that the new vibrations out of the Kerouac Project trace to Darlyn and Brad Kuhn?

We don't want to overstate First Friday's quiet influence on the writing world in the region, and it is amazing to think of really, if you go to one of our FF sessions and see how pleasantly low key and unpresupposing it all is, the broken down couches, the bust of Shakespeare on the mantel, the dim energy saving lighting, the random seating arrangement, never any refreshments! -- completely informal and friendly, safe for our bad poetry and celebratious of our good stuff and our submission victories. Very low key -- yet it makes real literary thunder. Next thing you know, an important Poet Laureate of the United States LIVES HERE!

What could this blog be used for? I've had a few ideas, since I started writing my own, "Long Pine Limited."

  1. We could use this location for posting the next First Friday, so you don't have to come over to Rollins, park, walk up the sidewalk, look in the window, and see the place is dark. I'll spread the word as usual, through Scribbles and our mailing list and the mysterious Brian Vogel, but I'll also post it here. You should be able to see it in the sidebar right now.

  2. You could post a poem if you want to.

  3. And you could comment on a person's poem if you want.

  4. You could come on here and post a victory (a publication!).

  5. You could come on here and ask questions (someone would try to answer, I'm sure -- you know how we are!).

  6. You've got other ideas for how this could be used. Type it as a comment!

  7. You could just wave hi.
We don't want to make it too formal. The informality and relaxed nature of FF is its hallmark, I hope, but sometimes after a meeting there might be comments, or someone may look up something and follow-up on a discussion. If you miss a night, you might be able to find out here what went on if you're curious. I won't try now to stipulate that we stay positive and try to replicate the mood of our Woolson House get-togethers -- you are the ones who make it what it is there, and who will make this an extension of that. Use your own email connections for your private connections, and let this be an extension of our First Friday community!