You’ve done the work.  Wrote the story, painted the painting, soldered the jewelry, sculpted the clay, or weaved the basket.  You’ve put in the hours at the workstation, lost yourself in the art, creating work unique and powerful and meant to contribute to a collective of voices echoing from generations past.  Then you take the work into the world.  Now it’s time to dance with the “crabs in the barrel” and the “fake In’dins.”

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One of the beautiful behaviors of people is our need to protect. We don’t like bullies.  This becomes more the case the older we get.  There is something about seeing someone being treated terrible that we can’t stand.  Maybe it’s a new comer who is unjustly getting targeted, or it could be someone vulnerable who doesn’t have the means to stand up for themselves.  Either way, when you see opportunists attacking someone, you can be assured the protectors will come out if full force.

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The sought after and mysterious “voice” of writing.  You watch editors salivate like Derridean defeatists about how magical voice can be when it “makes your foot tap to the rhythm.”  Aww, how romantic.  We are lovely romantic beings who need magic in our lives.  Well, I’m about to take the magic out of the what, where, and how to find a literary voice.

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Exploring culture through foods is nothing new to the literary world.  Likewise, it’s not new to Native American literature.  While we in the literary field know this to be true there is still very little exploration of the topic in thematic terms.  How can traditional food and customs associated with consumption of those foods enhance the greater theme of a piece?

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