Submitted

This Artist/Writer/Photographer thing is still new territory for me. Fear wasn't the only reason I held back from just running with it all because, and let's be honest, it's gonna be a bitch redesigning business cards. I'll deal with that later, though. For now, it's Show and Tell time because I spent entirely too much time making Scrunchy Faces I never selfie'd while over-thinking the Artist Statement portion of a recent art show submission. I apologize to Instagram for robbing you of the chance to point and laugh.

I'm sorry. I'll try to do better next time. I promise.

 

Image by Pauline Campos

As a mother, I strive to teach my daughter that she can go anywhere...do anything. I want her to know that it's more important to create her own space rather than try to fit in. We moved to Maine two years ago and do not blend; our olive tones made more obvious by the white snow covering the ground for most of the year. But we are creating our space. In this photo, my daughter, 7, stands in a barn beneath the princess pinata made by a local woman, also Mexican, for her birthday party. She is fierce, focused, and stands tall, daring anyone to question her presence, her choices, her right to wear that crown or the cape she says makes her royalty. In this moment, she has claimed her space.

 

Photo by Pauline Campos

As the founder of the #chingonafest community, I strive to empower Latinas to embrace (and celebrate) their true selves and voices in the face of cultural dictates telling us to do otherwise. As Latina Magazine's #Dimelo advice columnist, I made some waves of my own when a conversation with my daughter turned into a column on Latina.com called "5 Ways to Raise a Chingona". And as the mother watching this girl grow sure and strong, I hope she never loses the spirit and determination that I was lucky enough to capture in her eyes and her stance when the flash went off.

 

Autobiography by Pauline Campos

I was running behind so I forgot to copy and paste this one but basically I said lots of words and then wrapped it up with "This is my story told on canvas." The end.

 

 

#SheSePuede by Pauline Campos

My goal and my purpose is to inspire women to embrace and celebrate our voices while forging our own paths -- and inspiring the next generation to do the same -- despite a culture dictating we do otherwise. I am the daughter of a Mexican-born father and was raised by my village, including my parents, tias, tios, and Abuelo. I am the mother of a second-generation daughter who is being raised by the girl who grew up to break away from the accepted in order to find myself. I am Chingona. #SheSePuede. Because alone we can, but together, we thrive.

 

The Typo Queen Strikes Ag...Oh Never Mind

I got tired of sitting here with my thumb up my ass waiting for responses to a few queries still floating around in Publishing Land, what with not having a clue what I had even sent out to whom and all, so I took the initiative (read: HC Palmquist made me do it) and trolled through my gmail account to set up a proper excel sheet. You know, so I'd have half a clue. I cringed at some of the quick form rejections, smiled at the You Don't Suck, The Market Does responses, and even did a little jig when I saw an invitation to query an agent with future projects.

Then? I saw this:

Dear (Mystical Gatekeeper Agent Person), When you see my query you also will see a very obvious typo...in the title of my book. While I am known to typo more often than should be legal, I am well aware of how to spell "Sane." Unfortunately, I am coming down with a cold and shivered while attempting to make the correction. That is when my fingers hit send for me before my head fixed the word. I understand if this takes me out of the running for consideration. But I did want to take a moment to explain myself. Please have a wonderful weekend.

Sincerely,

Pauline M. Campos

So, who's surprised that I never heard back from this agent?

Anyone? No?

Yeah...I figured as much.

Desperately Seeking You...Desperately Seeking Yourself

Listen up, mujeres. (That's Spanish for "ladies." Which makes that sentence "Spanglish." Yeah, I know...I feel cool for just having written it, so I can't even imagine how it feels to have read it.)It's been a while since I mentioned the anthology. Which is funny because I've been sitting here floundering in the Unpubbed Writer version of the After the Wedding Blues wondering what the hell I was supposed to be doing to occupy my time. No writing project keeping up till 3 a.m...now what do I do to keep The Muse busy? Keep myself feeling like I have a goal to work towards (other than not saying anything that rhymes with "Fuck" when I open rejections because Buttercup now believes "Truck it" is an acceptable phrase to utter when something didn't quite go her way. Okay, I'm kidding. Really, I am. But a little part of me wishes I really wasn't.) Where was I again? Oh, right. Me thinking I had nothing to do other than that Mom thing and that Wife thing and that Holding Me Breath While Query Responses Roll In thing and occasionally remembering to mention the Anthology thing on twitter in a lukewarm attempt to drum up interest for submissions and...wait a minute... That sounds suspiciously like a writing project. Maybe, because it is. *Faceplam*

And? So far, so good. I've received a few more submissions and have received word from two very respected writers that they are totally on the Baby F(Ph)at Band Wagon, which has me all kinds of giddy. Now, the only question is, when are you going to share your story?

Here are the updated details (also available in a bit more detail on this link).

I am seeking submissions from moms out there who wants to share their own stories regarding weight loss. I know I'm not the only mother out there who is wondering what the hell happened to her waistline after the baby came. Or the only one who's wishing Karma didn't take names when I was on the other side of motherhood and passing judgment on women I knew for "letting themselves go." Forget Hollywood moms and the fairy-tale disappearing baby pooch...I want real moms to come clean with their own stories. Make me laugh. Make me cry. Make me want to call you up and meet for coffee (sugar free and skim-milked, of course!). Make me connect with you as a mother and as a person. Just make it real.

So what’s the deal? I wrote Baby F(Ph)at: Adventures in Motherhood, Weight Loss, and Trying to Stay Sane…and that is my journey. I want to read about yours. How motherhood changed your perspectives about body image, weight loss, and getting into or staying in shape. I want honesty. I want to laugh. I want to relate. And I want it to read like a conversation between best friends over a few bottles of wine (after the kids are asleep, of course, which means you are totally allowed to swear.)

So far, I have a few awesome pieces which will be considered for the final project, and am in search of more.

Here are the guidelines:

* Stories must be between 500 and 1,500 words and be told in first person. This is your story…not your neighbors. Make sure to include a short bio with contact information.

*Essays should focus on the topic of weight. Suggestions include:

—Your expectations prior to becoming pregnant versus the reality

—How pregnancy changed your body

—How you lost the weight

—Acceptance of your new shape

—Balancing the needs of your children with your own

*Birth moms, adoptive moms, foster moms, grandmothers with custody...if you carried a child or carry the responsibility of raising one, your story counts, too. Motherhood changes all of us and how we see ourselves.

* No anonymous or author unknown submissions.

* Please submit only stories or poems that have not been previously published. An exception to this rule is, of course, those previously published works to which you own the reprint rights.

* Submissions should be sent to aspiringmama@gmail.com with “Anthology” in the subject line.

* By submitting a story, you give www.aspiringmama.com the right to re-publish and distribute your work on this website, and in any other formats (including, but not limited to, the site’s Twitter feed, RSS feed, and possible publication in a book).

* By submitting a story, you give www.aspiringmama.com the right to re-publish and distribute your work on this website, and in any other formats (including, but not limited to, the site's Twitter feed, RSS feed, and possible publication in a book).

Deadline for submissions is April 6, 2011. Feel free to email with any questions. I look forward to reading your stories.

And that’s the deal, peeples. So who wants to share?

Aspiring Mama Seeks Anthology Submissions

It's time to change things up a bit. It's time to take the focus off of the baby f(ph)at essay contest and on to the actual anthology. I'll be honest, I'm not cut out to be a contest blogging mama. It's why I gave up my old blog and hopped on my own little wordy bandwagon over here at Aspiring Mama. But I am all about connecting with other women, other mothers, and working on an anthology that I think will speak to anyone who picks it up.

So what's the deal? I wrote Baby F(Ph)at: Adventures in Motherhood, Weight Loss, and Trying to Stay Sane...and that is my journey. I want to read about yours. How motherhood changed your perspectives about body image, weight loss, and getting into or staying in shape. I want honesty. I want to laugh. I want to relate. And I want it to read like a conversation between best friends over a few bottles of wine (after the kids are asleep, of course, which means you are totally allowed to swear.)

So far, I have a few awesome pieces from previous contest winners which will be considered for the final project, and am in search of more.

I know I’m not the only mother out there who is wondering what the hell happened to her waistline after the baby came. Or the only one who’s wishing Karma didn’t take names when I was on the other side of motherhood and passing judgment on women I knew for “letting themselves go.” Forget Hollywood moms and the fairy-tale disappearing baby pooch…I want real moms to come clean with their own stories. Make me laugh. Make me cry. Make me want to call you up and meet for coffee (sugar free and skim-milked, of course!). Make me connect with you as a mother and as a person. Just make it real.

Here are the guidelines:

* Stories must be between 500 and 1,500 words and be told in first person. This is your story…not your neighbors. Make sure to include a short bio with contact information.

*Essays should focus on the topic of weight. Suggestions include:

—Your expectations prior to becoming pregnant versus the reality

—How pregnancy changed your body

—How you lost the weight

—Acceptance of your new shape

—Balancing the needs of your children with your own

* No anonymous or author unknown submissions.

* Please submit only stories or poems that have not been previously published.

* Submissions should be sent to aspiringmama@gmail.com with “Anthology” in the subject line.

* By submitting a story, you give www.aspiringmama.com the right to re-publish and distribute your work on this website, and in any other formats (including, but not limited to, the site’s Twitter feed, RSS feed, and possible publication in a book).

And that's the deal, peeples. So who wants to share?

**Deadline is April 22,2011. Feel free to email with any questions. I look forward to reading your stories.