On Tuesday, December 15, 2020, Tiffany Sunday was interviewed by the Lake Highlands Advocate about the recent release of Proper Grey Areas.
Tilton House Press announced on Tuesday, December 8, 2020, the release of Proper Grey Areas – A Collection of Poems by Tiffany Sunday.
Proper Grey Areas is the anticipated sophomore collection of poetry from Tiffany, author of Insatiable Consumption of Being (poetry), and bestselling book How Dyslexics Will Rule the Future. She is also the author of Dyslexia’s Competitive Edge and You Posted What!?
Her second volume of poetry is a powerful, eclectic collection. This book could belong in many categories as readers navigate through emotionally charged themes of love, grief, abuse, equality vs. inequality, and pandemic induced stress.
Attuned to her craft, Tiffany’s piercing allegory and sophisticated use of lineation demonstrate her as an important voice in this genre. Tiffany’s exploration into darker emotions offers a comprehensive picture of her distinctive writing signature. Tiffany’s use of metaphorical elements throughout her writing, convey meaning beyond the literal.
Poems celebrating humanity and the simplistic beauty of nature are woven within the darkness, reminding readers to cherish the gift of being. The collection is accessible to anyone seeking self-reflection and solace.
Proper Grey Areas is available at retail and online booksellers.
Borrowed spaces are stores, places, anywhere we go outside our homes to feel better. Subconsciously we’re hunting a sensory and emotional fed to fill a void. We seek out places that feel like a second home, a place in our memories that fills us with reassurance, joy, and love.
We seek out places to feel safe and protected. Other spaces instantly relax us, allowing for a brief moment to escape from the stress of the world.
To sit under a star lite sky in a hot tub on a cold winter’s evening. Or to sit by the fireplace with a cup of tea or glass of wine, staring into the flames, thinking nothing at all, giving our minds a chance to relax. Or walking into our favorite store, the warmth of the greetings we feel as we enter the space.
Our eyes carefully view the items, our creativity exploring all possibilities, as we slowly walk through the store. During the holidays, seasonal aromas fill the air, with the offering of warm apple cider.
We all have our go-to places. These places become part of our soul over time, preferred beach house, mountain cabin, or favorite vacation city. Our soul marks these places as “ours,” often refusing to let go.
With the world turned upside down, we are prevented from visiting our borrowed spaces, creating a feeling of loss. The anchor we need to fill the void grows larger with each passing day. The need intensifies as the void feels overwhelming as we search for an alternative.
As a visual creative, I need to see, touch, and feel what I am purchasing. Unable to visit my “borrowed spaces” invokes a feeling of sadness, especially with the approaching holidays. The laugher, light conversations, and energy of these spaces are silent.
One night last week, I drove around and looked at my favorite stores. Briefly, I stepped inside a bookstore; it is an obsession. Two other customers and I were the only ones in the store, so maintaining a safe distance was not a problem. I had, too, for a moment, to feel the security of one of my borrowed spaces.
Yes, I was wearing my protective gear and made sure to keep an expanded distance of more than 10 feet. All the beautiful books, journals, and holiday gifts awaiting, tempting me.
To be safe for all, I returned home to burrow, once again, counting the days to visit my borrow spaces.
About this time, fourteen years ago, I bumped into Mark Cuban at Tony & Guy, we chatted for a few minutes, and then later, I asked for a word of advice. Mark said, “always searching for the silver lining,” the advice was in reference to a business I was started. However, his advice can be applied to life and business.
Since the beginning of 2020, I have kept his advice close. In the mists of the going chaos that swirls around us each day, I take time to appreciate the silver linings that I find. These silver linings can be small blessings, a kind gesture from a neighbor or stranger, or the simple pleasure of listening to music or watching a movie, or looking at beautiful art on Instagram or watching a dance company perform on YouTube.
Giving Light to Darkness
Art fills in the grey areas of our day, giving light to the darkness. Art is expressed in many forms, from dance, music, writing, art, and the creative design of products.
I could not imagine a day without art, a day without music, a day without a book, a day without a movie, a day without watching a dance performance.
If art disappears, the void would be tremendous.
Our world would feel lifeless, a world without joy or laughter, the sense of awe, or energy we receive from engaging with music, movies, books, and the performing arts.
November is a month of gratitude and blessings. At Thanksgiving, we slow down enough to acknowledge our gifts, our silver linings, regardless of how small these blessings maybe.
The creative community needs help and support as members have experienced significant career shock due to the pandemic. Each day we consume hours of art from listening to music on Spotify or binge-watching TV shows on Hulu or Netflix. Creatives, like myself, produced the content we all consume.
Today, similar to a TEDx Talk – I challenge you to purchase a song from a new band, a book from an unknown author, a painting from a local artist, offer support to a local performing arts group. Be sure to include local libraries and food banks.
Unsure of how to help?
Here is a list of apps where creatives promote their work. Donate a few dollars. Your support becomes the silver lining for others.
Share your work, create app accounts, so others can help support you and your work. I’ve included a link to my Buy Me a Coffee in the comments section as an example.
We need to help support each other to ensure we always have art to consume.
Anything created by machine learning is not the same. Human art feeds the heart, fills the soul, and gives us a sense of purpose, something a machine can never do.
For the past couple of days, the weather has been perfect—crystal clear skies without a single cloud. During my run this morning, I was mesmerized by the blue sky radiating from above.
At times, the beauty of the sky was almost unimaginable. I felt an instant feeling of clarity without distraction as I completed my first mile. A sense of peacefulness washed over me as I watched leaves of yellow, auburn, red and gold, gently floated down like snowflakes.
The morning was accented by birds chattering mixed with children’s laughter from a nearby elementary school. I savored the moment, honoring the beauty of November and its gift of gratitude. Mixed within nature’s bounty was the simple pleasure of being, of not being in a hurry to be somewhere or to be somebody.
I wondered, when does a leaf know when to fall? I’m sure I could Google to find the answer, yet I did not. Instead, I thought about the randomness of the falling leaves outside of any predicted order.
The Importance of November
Throughout our neighborhood, Christmas and holiday decorations share space with turkeys and Halloween pumpkins. In our rush to rid ourselves of 2020, are we missing the grandeur of November?
I cannot explain why I am holding out for November and Thanksgiving. Decorative turkeys rest on the dining table, singular in their representation of the Thanksgiving holiday. As each day passes, I continue to delay putting up holiday decorations and pulling my Christmas coffee mugs from storage.
Neighbors and strangers mention in passing how we’re all sprinting to the end of the year while at the same time, feel as if we’re missing something as we race towards 2021. I’m ready for the new year as much as everyone else. However, my intuition reminds me that each minute of every day is a precious gift.
As I watch the leaves fall and the wind whisper through the trees, I think about the year, the important lessons learned, and how I’ve changed. We must pause and take time to honor November and Thanksgiving for the many blessings we’ve received this year and also the help we’ve given to others.
Although, we’re at home, and appear to be in a constant state of pause, are we taking time to appreciate nature’s beauty that surrounds us? November is a month for reflection and for recognizing even the tiniest moment of gratitude, wonder, and appreciation we encounter, give, and receive every day.
In a week or so, I’ll slowly start pulling out my Christmas decorations. Until then, I am taking my time to appreciate autumn’s beauty, the fall harvest, and November’s gratitude.
Two weeks ago, as I was completing Proper Grey Areas, I felt something was missing for the editors. I was frustrated that I didn’t feel whole as a writer, poet, and author. The burden of doing what others thought I should be doing weighted heavy. Each morning during my runs, I mentally wrestled with the problem.
Reaching into the dark corner of my soul, I was blocked by my ego, which served as a gatekeeper, as I, once again encountered fear. I kept thinking about what would I have done differently in the past if fear had not been part of the equation. Fear of what others think, fear of the results, fear of not receiving approval, or fear of success of fully using my creativity.
As the weeks passed, my soul, heart, and mind joined together on the same path as my intuition continued to push me. I reached a point where I could no longer accept negative inherited family habits and beliefs. At a crossroads, I had to make a choice. I could continue to allow fear to hold me captive or call my spirit back.
As Myss writes in Anatomy of the Spirit, “What drains your spirit drains your body. What fuels your spirit fuels your body. The power that fuels our bodies, our minds, and our hearts does not originate in our DNA. Rather, it has roots in Divinity itself.”
Working to call my spirit back, my intuition and soul were screaming – write books that fully utilize creativity. My creativity, the core of my soul, needed to be set free, released from my imagined fear. My intuition whispered let go, write what you want to write. With the suddenness of a Texas blue northern my creative energy return.
With a recharged creative battery, I join the National Novel Writing Month contest this month with the goal of writing a holiday fun romance book. My soul wore a party hat for a couple of days while I prepared to write a Christmas novel I want to write.
Last week, I read 12 Days of Christmas, by Debbie Macomber, in preparation of writing a holiday novel. The book’s main character, Julia Padden blogs about her kindness experiment. I liked Macomber’s idea of blogging about the process. Along with writing a holiday / Christmas novel, I will be writing about the book, the food cooked by the characters and other holiday goodies.
In September, I hired a new website company and we’re working to add a newsletter signup form. In January, I am launching a monthly newsletter.
For now, use the email info at dillon 5 dot com to sign up for my newsletter and book updates.