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Wide Eyes: A Chapbook
Content notice: This chapbook deals with strong themes of sexual assault and abuse. Please read with caution.
All you have to do is access the news to be inundated with the reality of rape, sexual assault, abuse, molestation, and other horrific crimes. When so many survivors are offering up their voices to add to the conversation so the situation we currently live in can be improved, I offer my story. Writing it was incredibly therapeutic, albeit incredibly difficult. But having difficult conversations is key to changing what is happening to people everywhere.
Being able to own my past and record it in the way I did with Wide Eyes was transformative for me. For a very long time I have felt like a secondary character in my own story and being able to take control of the narrative and share what happened to me was empowering. I honestly don’t know if I will ever completely heal from these wounds or be able to look back on what has happened to me without emotion. But I am better today than I was yesterday and maybe tomorrow I’ll be a little better than that.
Text: Star LaBranche
Editing: Roderick Bates of Rat’s Ass Review
Layout: Star LaBranche
Racing Toward Red Lights
This is my digital chapbook, Racing Toward Red Lights. I started writing the text at the Little River Poetry Festival and finished it up when I got home. It’s a companion piece to my chapbook, Wake Me When It’s Over.
After I finished the text and had it edited by the wonderful Roderick Bates, I decided I would like to add some visuals to it. I started playing around on Indesign and managed to cobble something together. While I know it’s not professional quality, I think it’s a good first attempt at a larger digital media project and I definitely learned a lot about the software through the creation of this piece.
While Wake Me When It’s Over dealt with a lot of physical and emotional transitions, Racing Toward Red Lights deals with hard realizations about marriage, romance, circumstance, and realizing that when you transition you don’t always know where you’re transitioning to.
Text: Star LaBranche
Editing: Roderick Bates, Rat’s Ass Review
Design: Star LaBranche
Star LaBranche has been writing ever since she could put words down on paper. She has never stopped. Author of multiple books including creative non-fiction, memoir, non-fiction, poetry, and multi-genre compilations, she is always working on a new project. Her dedication to digital media has led to a 10-year blogging career and advanced knowledge in WordPress.
Adding to her digital media skills, Star has begun training in the Adobe Creative Cloud, in photography, videography, and audio work. She hopes to use her blog and website to chart her growth as she expands her knowledge and creativity outlets.
Photograph by Samantha Searles Photography.
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This book was slapped together out of a chapbook project that evolved out of my desire to talk about self-esteem, beauty culture, and body image. There is a section on these topics now, but there are 5 other sections dealing with everything from students loans to family interactions. My goal for this book is to be published by a small press. I have a long road ahead of me, but I'm on my way.
Working Title: Acapella
I want to do a retreat at Porches in Charlottesville that coincides with Camp NaNoWriMo. My goal is to make another book-length collection of poems for publication. I am still kicking around ideas as to what it will actually be about. I'm thinking fairy tales. But I have no fear that it will be amazing.
Note: Image of Karmin in their video for Acapella, which inspired me.