|© Yiftach Paltrowitz, 2010|
KJ Hannah Greenberg is usually too busy parenting her teenage sons and daughters to contemplate her navel. If she had five extra minutes, she would bake quinoa pie and feed it to her imaginary hedgehogs. Meanwhile, she steals time by sleeping a little less and laughing a little more. On rare, alternate Tuesdays, Hannah and the hedgies fly the galaxy in search of gelatinous monsters and assistant bank managers. Sometimes, they even catch a few.
A Little Longer:
Whereas Hannah's preferred method of nurturing has remained unwearied analysis, it is not beyond her ken to resort to screaming (a little) or to sitting on the sofa and crying (a lot). Otherwise, she's content to shuttle her kids among activities, to listen to their lore about friendships, and to remember toothpaste or underwear for those family members who venture out regularly.
Two decades ago, while focused on her children, Hannah eked out: a novel, a ream of poetry, and a couple of cute, creative nonfiction pieces that referenced the "growth opportunities" concomitant to parenting. However, Hannah stored those treasures, rather than offering them up for publication, since she was busy mopping carpets, diapering doll bottoms, and chopping beans. To distract herself from the less pleasant moments of motherhood, she taught calculus to high school students and conducted university classes in Argumentation and Debate, Interpersonal Communication, and Feminist Sociology.
When Hannah and her family relocated to "the other side of the world," her life changed. Specifically, during one occasion when Hannah was entertaining some female friends, by dint of sharing a tall tale about falafel balls, preteen fashion sense, and "special American pricing," she was told: to keep her hot sauce to herself, to realign her skirt, and to consider returning to writing.
A multi-year stint blogging about intercultural communication, for The Jerusalem Post, followed as did a few months of teaching chemistry and of discovering that the local, dumpster cats were really "squirrels." Hannah edited a paper on the effects of electrical stimulus on the hippocampus, and diffidently wrote and published a handful of stories in places such as Mishpacha's Calligraphy and MidCentury Modern Moms. She also bought a pair of very large earrings. Additionally, Hannah judged creative nonfiction for Notes & Grace Notes, became a "Poet of the Week" at Poetry Super Highway and developed Expressively Yours Writing Workshops of Jerusalem.
By the summer of 2008, at last sufficiently frustrated with her inability to lecture, locally, on discourse, Hannah rededicated her verbal zest to other outlets. Her years of belly dancing, home birthing, herbal medicine making, and basket weaving, notwithstanding, she dusted off her keyboard and began to churn out more smoothies, vegetable soup, and creative writing than might be considered proper for a middle-aged mom.
By 2009, Hannah was blogging for Type-A Parent, writing a column for The Mother Magazine, and serving as an Associate Editor at both Sotto Voce and Bewildering Stories. She received her first Pushcart Prize nomination that year.
2010 found Hannah writing monthly critiques for Tangent, the speculative fiction review,and blogging for Kindred. Oblivious to the Obvious: Wishfully Mindful Parenting, a collection of humorous essays, was published by French Creek Press.
In 2011, Hannah became an Associate Editor at Bound Off, began writing about Judaism for The Jerusalem Post, brought her creative writing workshop to the Association of Americans and Canadians in Israel, and joined the lineup at Natural Jewish Parenting. She received her second Pushcart Prize nomination that year and saw A Bank Robber's Bad Luck with His Ex-Girlfriend, a poetry collection, published by Unbound CONTENT.
2012 was the year that four of her books were published; Don't Pet the Sweaty Things, a short fiction collection, by Bards & Sages Publishing; Fluid & Crystallized, a poetry chapbook, by Fowlpox Press; Supernal Factors, a poetry chapbook, by The Camel Saloon Books on Blog; and Intelligence's Vast Bonfires, a poetry collection, by Lazarus Media. As well, 2012 brought a nomination for Best of the Net.
In 2013, Vagabondage Press will be publishing Ten Kilo and One Million, a novel, Hannah's writing workshops will move to the OU Center of Jerusalem, and Hannah will host a writing retreat in Tsfat. As well, Hannah has already signed contracts to add to her repertoire of hundreds of freestanding essays, short stories, and poems.