Saturday, March 15, 2014

Runaway Dish Culinary Journal Vol. 3


The Barbecue And Film Issue


"...just really incredible food experiences that expand, enhance, and celebrate our entire community." 


Saturday, February 15, 2014

The Allen Ginsberg Project


The Mystery of the Inner Moonlight


Saturday, February 1, 2014

In the House Upon the Dirt Between the Lake and the Woods | Matt Bell

"Drown yourself away, my wife sang, and despite my want to stay I found myself again outside the house, for against the fury of her song my horror held neither strength nor will nor strategy."







Friday, January 3, 2014

Belle Journal Volume I



With a mantra that rises from the soul of a sometimes forgotten land and a tenacity instilled by those that came before, Belle Journal emerges as a home for the voices of “alternative” southern belles. Based in Baton Rouge, La., this new literary journal features prose, poetry and visual art from women all over the South.






Saturday, December 14, 2013

Runaway Dish



Runaway Dish is a private, not-for-profit organization with a mission to promote the creative culinary talents and resources that thrive in Southern Louisiana while raising funds for various local charities.

Runaway Dish Culinary Journal Vol. 2:




Runaway Dish Culinary Journal Vol. 1:























Each themed dinner will spotlight a different chef and a different charity.

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Puerto del Sol | Volume 48 | Number 1


Alongside the works of:


Matt Bell,
Steven Ramirez,
Robin Lee Jordan,
James O'Brien,
Brenda Rankin,
Lisa Estus,
Sonya Huber,
Julia Cohen,
Joelle Biele,
T Kira Madden,
Jennifer Buxton,
Max Somers,
Britt Melewski,
Matthew Wimberley,
Sheryl Luna,
Dani Sandal,
Eric Morris,
George David Clark,
Noah Eli Gordon,
Myronn Hardy,
Catherine Kasper,
David Romanda,
Nora Hickey,
Sally Wen Mao,
Megan M. Wong,
Kelsie Hahn,
Sessily Watt, and
Jeanine Deibel,

"Went The Bite" can be found in Puerto del Sol (Volume 48, Number 1).




Puerto del Sol (Volume 48, Number 1) is now available for preorder.

Monday, February 25, 2013

Fight Song By Joshua Mohr



"Not many authors can shift from satire to sentiment so easily, but Mohr is a clever enough writer that he manages to pull this off...As the plot in Fight Song becomes increasingly surreal, it gets funnier, and the emotional veins it taps into grow more real and textured. The novel becomes a kind of parable, a story of man searching for redemption." —LA Times

Joshua Mohr is the author of the novels Termite Parade (a New York Times Book Review Editor’s Choice selection), Some Things that Meant the World to Me (one of O Magazine's Top 10 reads of 2009 and a San Francisco Chronicle bestseller), and Damascus, published in the fall of 2011 to much critical acclaim. Mohr teaches in the MFA program at the University of San Francisco.

Fight Song is now available at Powell's Books.





Monday, February 11, 2013

Time And Language: An Interview With Gabriel Blackwell


It was such a pleasure to interview Gabriel Blackwell. He is the author of Shadow Man: A Biography of Lewis Miles Archer (Civil Coping Mechanisms, 2012), Critique of Pure Reason (Noemi, 2013), and Neverland, a chapbook with video/audio/illustrations. He is also the reviews editor of The Collagist and a contributor to Big Other.

Time And Language: An Interview With Gabriel Blackwell can be found at Carbon-Based Lifeform Blues.





For more about Gabriel Blackwell, please visit his website here.


Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Uncanny Valley Magazine 0002


Alongside the works of:

John Colburn,
Rachel B. Glaser,
Tyler Gobble,
J. A. Tyler, Rachel Yoder,
Kathleen Rooney and Elisa Gabbert,
A. D. Jameson,
René Georg Vasicek,
Michele Harris,
Justin Anderson,
and
Lindsay Hunter,

"Mud" and "Gone Went The Rabbit" can be found in  Uncanny Valley Magazine 0002.



Uncanny Valley 0002 is now available for preorder (includes a free copy of issue 0001).

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Mark Maynard, On Reading



"Reading is the antidote to loneliness. Through the characters of prose, and via the persona of poetry, we come to understand ourselves. We know that our experiences -- whether sunk in dark thought and despair, or raised by moments of joy and promise -- are things that have been felt before, and will be felt again. Our unspoken thoughts and outward actions are mirrored, and often shown to us in a new light. Reading confirms our humanity."

{
Mark Maynard is the author of Grind and the Fiction Editor of the Meadow. Visit his website here for more information.}



Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Hilary Plum, On Reading



"I read The Tunnel mornings at my kitchen table, all day had to sweat off the stench. Reading about Sacco and Vanzetti I rode a train across Germany; against the green countryside, red roofs, slim roads diving into fields and threading mountains, they must die. In bed as a girl I read Yeats and Dickinson and remember no more than a rhythm. I hope I am not alone in this, I read that passage from 'Orbit' aloud again and again. My vision descends the archaic torso of Apollo. For a series of nights I read the first page of Der Prozess, Jemand musste Josef K. verleumdet haben, I get no further. Sick I lay on the couch and heard 'Hymn to Life' in Jimmy’s thick tones, a half hour in tears. I sat reading 'The Morning of the Poem' in a library in Concord, Massachusetts, until a man interrupted me. He was from Ghana, was it, and trying to get into a business class, could I read his application? My publisher was the ocean: I read a poem and was almost angry, how much of myself I needed to offer in response, and what fool wouldn’t know this as love? There are days that won’t pass without a detective novel. The mornings in Tucson, some chair at some historic inn, agog at The Making of Americans. Child on each side of my father reading Treasure Island, our eyes on N.C. Wyeth’s men, their round muscled limbs. I lie in a park in Oregon and Bolaño would forgive me each interruption. It is winter, Blood Meridian. I still have some lover’s mother’s William Maxwell, never read. I read every Anne of Green Gables then read each one again and she did the same. Years later I went to the red clay and warm sea of that island; years later I bought books I didn’t want when she sold them. It is surprising, who might give you The Dubliners. I did skip one section of Les Misérables, never finished Portrait of a Lady nor Anna Karenina. Sat in a friend’s hammock before the exam reading Andrei Bely. To my lovers gave Nabokov and Beckett, why; from another borrowed Beckett back. She and I read all of Beckett then went to the ice cream shop where they microwave the cookies, listened to the town fool dictate a personals ad, to whom we couldn’t see. Manuscripts on my desktop that despite guilt I don’t reply to. The Qur’an, the rest of Sebald. I sat on the roof of the dorm reading Blake aloud and like a sophomore hoped someone could hear me. Sick I lay in bed and he read me the poems of Lawrence, which I do not care to read under other circumstances. Lost a manuscript he had given me; panicked; moved out. Skimmed everything on the internet. Stood in Penn Station, book propped open. Wrote a book."

{
Hilary Plum is the author of They Dragged Them Through the Streets (FC2, 2013). She’s co-director, with Pam Thompson, of Clockroot Books and is a consulting editor with the Kenyon Review. With Zach Savich she edits the Open Prose Series for Rescue+Press.}


Monday, October 22, 2012

Jessy Randall, On Reading



"A book crush is different from a regular crush. With a regular crush, you don’t want to share the boy with anyone, you’d prefer if nobody else could see him or hug him or smell him but you. But with a book crush you want everybody to read the book. And that's how I feel about Daniel Pinkwater’s Lizard Music.

It's about a kid named Victor who has the house to himself for a few days while his parents and sister are away. He stays up late watching TV and happens upon a lizard band show. Soon he’s on his way to Thunderbolt City, an invisible floating island populated by large, upright, talking lizards. The story is absurd. It’s ridiculous. It’s awesome.

I still think about Lizard Music every day, mainly because of the Museum of Lost Things in Thunderbolt City. Victor visits this museum, which on the outside doesn’t look like much – it’s like a little shack – but on the inside it’s quite big. In it, he gets back his old teddy bear from when he was younger, and he can see (but not touch) the lost things of other people. There are so many of my things there. I’ve made lists.

Here’s another way a book crush is different from a regular crush. It can last for decades. Some books, you read them, you crush on them, and five or ten years later, you don’t know what you ever saw in them. But Lizard Music has stood the test of time for me. I go back to it every few years and it hasn’t disappointed me yet. I still get that heady feeling, that I-must-go-and-tell-everybody-I-know-about-this.

And here’s something else that’s great about book crushes: they’re addictive. You fall in love with the one book, and if you’re lucky, the author has written others. In the case of Pinkwater, there are a LOT of others. You’re set for life. Particularly in this case, because there’s a new Pinkwater, Bushman Lives, and … well, I won’t give away any surprises, but let’s just say that for all fans of Lizard Music, a lost thing has been returned."

{Jessy Randall is the author of, most recently, Injecting Dreams into Cows, a collection of poems from Red Hen Press. Annalee Newitz of io9 says that one poem from it, "The Consultant," is "the best science poem you'll read this month." For more information, visit her website here.}



Friday, September 28, 2012

Brian Allen Carr, On Reading



"At the moment, I'm not a fan of books. By that I mean, I'm not a fan of lots of books. I go through phases. Sometimes I can sit and read anything, sometimes I'm waiting for something, what, I don't know. I get book hangovers like a mother fucker. I finished Broken Glass by Alain Mabanckou a few weeks ago, and everything I've read since has seemed hollow. I need to get the rest of his books. I've got shit tons of books I haven't read. I'm staring at my shelves, nothing's calling. They will. It's odd. I'll look at something's spine 100 times before I decide, 'I'm reading this fucker right now.' I wonder what causes that.


I know this, if I want to read a book, I need it now and forever until I've turned the last page. If I'm suggested a book the chances of my liking it are reduced dramatically. The best is when you happen on a book. It stumbles across you. You're locked in that intimate dance.

Then there are the books I can always read because they just found me at the right time: The Stranger, The Little Prince, Jesus' Son, Norwood, Paris Spleen, Tomato Red, As I lay Dying, and the earth did not devour him.

We can't help the things we're in love with, the flavors our tongue craves. I can't talk my eyes into liking any sentence. I can't tell my mind to cry at a narrative. It's magic, that.

Some books seem fantastic until you start them, and some books seem terrible until they're finished. Which is the fist and what is the palm and who gets to make these decisions? It's peculiar, frightening, worse than nostalgia. Worse then the dances they used to make us go to, where the one you wanted to dance with was the stiffest body of them all, and someone you thought boring dragged you until you understood the music wasn't coming from the speakers, it was playing through their souls. Then you just turn into the kind of flower that no one would buy a bouquet of, but that smell sweeter than all the bullshit. Then you don't need to look pretty. You just fucking feel it.

Maybe I'll read the Bible. Maybe I'll read Henry Miller. Maybe I'll draw a picture with a crayon of an ocean and try to drink it off the page."

{
Brian Allen Carr's book Vampire Conditions is out with Holler Presents.}

Saturday, August 4, 2012

Gabe Durham, On Reading


Every library with a Banned Books shelf knows that reading is best when it feels like a subversive act. A few weeks ago, I bought and read Nicholson Baker's The Fermata (the Vintage paperback with its innocuous, literal cover) while on a vacation with my wife and parents. It was privately funny to me to be reading such a raunchy book so secretly and yet so out in the open.


But the truth is, I'd have felt that way reading nearly any good book--I'd still get to relish my detachment. 'They all think I'm here with them--I'm not!' Maybe that's why reading at home alone so often puts me to sleep: There's no one there to bear witness to my secrecy.

I was still reading The Fermata on my trip home (my wife having flown back a few hours earlier), and at the airport gate I saw a woman reading a book that made all of us, the citizens of C-9, consider, if ever so briefly, that this comfily clothed women was a sexual being. The book, of course, was 50 Shades of Grey. I was pleased that my raunch was so much more obscure than hers, that her predilections were on display and mine remained in the darkness, that my book simply looked like a history of punctuation, the sort of thing a glasses-wearing skinny white guy would be reading, when it so surely was not.

Then it occurred to me that what I really wanted was for just a few members of my C-9 family be in on the joke, for them (men or women, best if a combination) to look at me in such a way as to have me understand that they knew exactly what I was up to. It is then that we would exchange grins I am nervously willing to describe as fiendish. But this did not happen, not even with one of them. And suddenly I felt very alone.

{
Gabe Durham is the author of Fun Camp, a novel forthcoming from Mud Luscious Press. He lives in Northampton, MA and edits Dark Sky Magazine. For more information, visit his website at gatherroundchildren.com.}

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Lysley Tenorio, On Reading



"I'll start by saying the obvious. All writers should read fiction, non-fiction, poetry, plays--that stuff feeds the work, it's inevitable. But I'll add one more thing to that list: graphic novels (which I'll consider interchangeable with comic books). Reading a graphic novel/comic book requires you to negotiate dialogue and exposition with image and layout, with visual sequence. Think of a panel: the form uses the panel as a visual representation of a definitive temporal moment--an actual unit of narrative. As writers, we can learn so much from a narrative moment that's represented visually, with (and often without) text--one of the most powerful things I've ever 'read' is from Frank Miller's The Dark Knight-- a page full of wordless panels depicting the unraveling of Martha Wayne's pearl necklace, that moment she and her husband are gunned down in front of their son, a young Bruce Wayne. Few images (and perhaps fewer words) explain Batman's psyche more clearly than that.


Reading comic books has helped me understand that we read narrative not for information, but for experience. Comic book writers and artists understand this from the very first panel."


{
Lysley Tenorio is the author of Monstress. His stories have appeared in The Atlantic, Zoetrope: All-Story, Ploughshares, Manoa, and The Best New American Voices and Pushcart Prize anthologies. For more information, visit lysleytenorio.com.}

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

John Minichillo, On Reading



"When the time came that I was too embarrassed to check out children's books I didn't venture all the way into the adult library but stopped at an aisle of science fiction, with covers that promised life and love on other planets, and lasers. Despite the covers these books were work, and I didn't always finish but I learned how one book led to another, one author to another.
In high school I still wasn't a reader, but I had an imagination and I wrote with confidence. In college I wanted to read more because reading seemed the best way to spend time on myself. The old library made the tuition seem worth it. The untrustworthy elevator, the smoking lounges, the reading room, the tapestries, the dust.
Summers I worked in a cemetery where I got more reading done than I did as an English major. We took long breaks in secluded sections where I would sit on a headstone and read. I read Vonnegut. I read Steinbeck. I read Moby-Dick.
After teaching science for a year and working as a bank teller for a year I went and got an MFA. But I was just starting to get it so I went to work on a Ph.D, where they looked at my transcripts and saw gaps. I had studied English but not enough. A professor said to me, 'You've never read Eliot?' Another professor said, 'You've never read Shaw?'

As I neared the end of my Ph.D. work I took a semester without classes to prepare for comprehensive exams. The reading list was insurmountable but I read all day every day. It was a gift, the time to read. I put my back out sitting in a second-hand chair. I bought a new chair and wandered into readings not on the list.

I have always loved that books arrive at my door in brown boxes, but now I read less. I write every day that I'm able. I teach. I have a family. I've gone electronic with my reading so I can sneak it in between classes, or in bed, or I listen to the Kindle robot-voice on my commute. I'm still discovering new writers who open me up. I still feel more confidence as a writer than I do as a reader. I still love the old dust of an old library but I'm not nostalgic about books. Pixels and e-ink get me there. I was hesitant to wander into the adult library as a kid, because I suspected reading was work. And it is."


{John Minichillo's novel, The Snow Whale, a contemporary retelling of Moby-Dick, was an Orion Magazine Book Prize notable and an Independent Publishers Book Awards regional gold medalist for the West-Pacific. Hey Small Press! selected The Snow Whale as a Best of 2011 and called the novel "the funniest book we reviewed all year." He's a 2012 recipient of a Tennessee individual artists grant and he lives in Nashville with his wife and son.}

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Skulltoons


Dan Gillen has been posting some cool paintings over at his website, Skulltoons. Visit his website here.







Black Balloon


Neat website and artwork for Black Balloon Publishing: check it out here.

Monday, April 2, 2012

"You Or Someone Like You" by Rob Roberge


Over at
The Rumpus, Rob writes about some of the obstacles of teaching--sometimes it's just really difficult. The essay can be found here.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Around And Around And Around And Around And Around And Around



The voice in my head is now speaking in a Cockney accent, saying "qu'est-ce que c'est" and "evening sun" over and over again.

But more importantly:

The Lit Pub, founded by the wonderful Molly Gaudry, is accepting submissions.

Blake Butler's Nothing is insanely awesome.

Roxane Gay's updates are always a pleasure.

Really liking the
Research Notes column over at Necessary Fiction.

Recently read Orion You Came and You Took All My Marbles by Kira Henehan--it's a great read.

James Greer and Guylaine Vivarat are rocking out in a new band called
Detective.

Cataclysm Baby by Matt Bell is coming out April 15, 2012--a neat trailer can be viewed here.

Always fun to see what Sandra Beasley is up to.

Ravi Mangla's Visiting Writers over at Uncanny Valley Press is very engaging.

Re-read
Caty Sporleder's Flay, a Book of Mu and it was just amazing as the first four times I had read it.

Choke On These Words.

Emily Rapp rules.

And locally:

It's Spring, and
Greenscape is blossoming.

Artist Terry Grow is in the middle of setting up his new website--here's what it looks like as of now.

Always fun to relax at
The Saint Street Inn--great food and drinks.

Enjoying the
Leather Candle from Kiki.

Historian
Rien Fertel and Photographer Denny Culbert have a Barbecue Bus.

Mais La à la Hollie Gargano.

Art art art over at
Freetown Studios.

Love this painting called
"Le Lapin" by Catherine Fontenot.

Looking forward to checking out more
documentaries over at The Passion Series.

Caught up with
Diwang Valdez and the Motion Family Crew not too long ago at Walk On's.

Just ordered
this for yonder C. Parker.

More later.

Back to the Cockney voice in my head. Fancy that, I fancy.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Joe Dunthorne, On Reading



"Growing up with two academic parents and a bibliophilic sister in a house seemingly propped up by bookshelves, one way in which I rebelled was by not reading or, at least, by not reading anything printed on paper. Many of my early reading experiences were through text-adventure computer games. My favourite was a brilliant spin-off of The Hitchhiker's Guide To The Galaxy by Douglas Adams. You can play it here. After that, I started writing my own games. Much later, I called them stories.
"

{Joe Dunthorne is the author of Submarine and Wild Abandon. Visit his website here for more information.}


Monday, March 12, 2012

Freetown Studios







From the website:

Freetown Studios believes that Lafayette Artists need to have a space to work with other artists and art enthusiasts. Since there are few established venues or artist studio/production spaces in Lafayette Parish, we have established a public forum/community center for artists and the general public in an up-and-coming neighborhood. The community will be encouraged to take advantage of the space while being introduced to various artists’ work processes and creative influences. The artists, on the other hand, will not only have the opportunity to see their work in the space, but will be able to present their work to the public – a chance many young artists have not had so far. There is also the lack of production space to consider — a problem that Freetown Studios hopes to solve.

Emerging artists often work from home, in small kitchens or living rooms hardly conducive to creative exchange. Having a place to work gives artists the drive to keep going. In addition to workspace, Freetown Studios will further the organization’s mission statement by providing quality services and programming which gives artists a public forum to discuss a variety of artistic mediums, emerging and cutting-edge work, and the importance of local access to cultural resources. Freetown Studios understands this drive and hopes to provide a perfect space to work, teach, and learn, a space that will inspire both struggling and established artists and members of the community to exchange ideas, work in different genres, and understand the extraordinary role art plays in everyday life. The goals of our programming and services scheduled are to provide space and support for multi-disciplinary, interactive workshops which will allow for work to be made and experienced by novices, professionals and spectators alike.

Freetown Studios Inc., is a nonprofit organization located in a 4,000 sq. ft. warehouse and dedicated to promoting emerging contemporary artists who work in Printmaking, Painting, Drawing, Installation, Theater, and other Multi-Media disciplines. We provide the artists with workspace and artistic support.

Freetown Studios
421 E. Convent St.
Lafayette, La, 70501

Freetown Studios 2012 Event Listing:

January

1.9.2012 – Intro Silkscreen begins – runs for 6 classes Mondays from 6-8 ($160 for course + few supplies)

1.21.2012 – Bonnie Camos Live Encaustic Demo 6-8p

February

2.13.2012 – Intro Silkscreen ends

2.25.2012 – Reggie Rodrigue presents Present Tense an open discussion on contemporary arts 6-8p

March

3.10.2012 – UL Writer in residence Kate Bernheimer and playwright Dayana Stetco will read from their writings & theatre productions 6-8p

3.16-18.2012 – Liz Hill figurative painting workshop (weekend workshop)

3.19.2012 – Intro to Relief begins – runs for 7 classes Tuesdays from 6-8p ($160 for course + few supplies)

3.20.2012 – Reggie Rodrigue presents Painting and Drawings 6-8p

April

4.7.2012 – Marie Hendry presents Paintings and Drawings (show opens 4.2.12-ends 4.7.12) 6-8p

4.21.2012 – Slava Broussard presents Paintings, Drawing, and Prints 6-8p

4.23.2012 – Intro Silkscreen begins – runs for 7 classes Mondays from 6-8p ($160 for course + few supplies)

May

5.1.2012 – Intro Relief ends

5.19.2012 – Giorgio Russo Multimedia Performance 8-10p; Doors open at 7:30p

5.26.2012 – Chris Deshazo Music Performance 8-10p; Doors open at 7:30p

June

6.11.2012 – Susan David Live Silkscreen Demo 6-8p

6.11.2012 – Intro Silkscreen ends; Classes will continue to be announced on Facebook and our website

6.23.2012 – Patterson Willis presents the Iconographer: The Publics Theatre 8-10p; Doors open at 7:30p

July

7.21.2012 – Stephanie Patton presents a Multimedia Installation 7-9p

August

8.18.2012 – Catherine Siracusa Live Encaustic Painting on Fabric/Canvas Demo 7-9p

September

9.15.2012 – Reggie Rodrigue Part 3 of Present Tense an open discussion of Louisiana contemporary arts 7-9p

October

10.13.2012 – Freetown Studios “Trunk Show” 3-6p (a live demo workshop including a variety of artists)

10.31.2012 – Printzero Studios travelling Printmaking Portfolio Exchange 2012.

November

11.1.2012- 11.11.2012 – Milena Theatre Group Closed Rehearsals

11.12.2012 -11.16.2012 – Milena Theatre Group OPEN Rehearsals – Open to the General Public; Time TBA

11.17.2012 Freetown Studios presents Sleeping with Vagabonds a Milena Theatre Group Production
Doors open at 7:30p. Show starts at 8p. SHARP. Limited Seating.

December

12.1.2012 – Printzero Studios show ends.

12.1.2012 – Sleeping with Vagabonds a Post Production Art-Space Dialogue
Doors open at 5:30p. Show starts at 6-8p. Show Ends 12.31.2012.



Saturday, March 10, 2012

3 x J.A. Tyler



"J.A. Tyler doesn’t write mythsof creation and destruction. He makes language-shards that refract your consciousness, that draw blood and make you wonder if it’s real. If you exist. At the end of the book, you won’t know.”
--Joanna Ruocco

Comatose
Patasola Press




"Read this for the sake of beauty that exists but is not yet inside of you."
--j/j hastain, author of new forms and meditations

In Love With A Ghost
Lit Pub



"In Tyler’s hands, static concepts become Möbius strips of subversion. This incredible text is a kalidoscopic set of bifocals: look up and you’re in a far-away war, down and you’re in a suburban treehouse. Up and you’re the victim, down and you’re the aggressor. What is so important throughout – what Tyler so remarkably and irrefutably convinces the reader of – is all the ways these binaries are indeed, are inescapably, fused together on the same lens."
--Alissa Nutting, author of Unclean Jobs for Women & Girls

Variations of a Brother War
Small Doggies Press







Thursday, March 8, 2012

fuckscapes | Sean Kilpatrick




“The violent, sexual zone of television and entertainment is made to saturate that safe-haven, the American Family. The result is a zone of violent ambience, a ‘fuckscape’: where every object or word can be made to do horrific acts. As when torturers use banal objects on its victims, it is the most banal objects that become the most horrific (and hilarious) in Sean Kilpatrick’s brilliant first book.”
– Johannes Göransson

“Pregnancy dream of poetry has this Sean Kilpatrick book by the fist. You learn to signal to others from the woken state, here, line-by-line. Do you have any extra money? Buy this book! If you have to skip lunch, buy THIS BOOK! “I held my breath so hard I ended up in the country.” Some poetry you read is forgotten, and never remembered. Some poetry, this poetry, Sean Kilpatrick’s poetry, is a manual for exciting the engine to throw you out of the vanquished pleasures. Here is your I.V. drip of sphinx’s blood.”
– CAConrad

fuckscapes
by Sean Kilpatrick

Mud Luscious Press/ Blue Square Press
100 pages
December 2011
$12

Friday, March 2, 2012

Take Care Fake Bear Torque Cake, by Heidi Lynn Staples



“Heidi Staples is one of the most sparkling, indelibly unique writers in English there is. Smart readers should follow her every move, including this quirky offering. She’s a beauty.”
--Mary Karr, author of
Lit

“Like Magritte’s The Son of Man, Take Care Fake Bear Torque Cake is a work that unabashedly walks a line between ‘the visible that is hidden and the visible that is present.’ It is a work full of a curious and exhilarating obfuscation that, when a reader is willing to look behind it, reveals an unexpectedly touching and delightful memoir.”
--Darby Larson, author of The Iguana Complex

For more information, and an excerpt:

Take Care Fake Bear Torque Cake
A Memoir By Heidi Lynn Staples
Caketrain Press

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

the discoverers the creators the seekers










Daniel J. Boorstin

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Catherine Chung, On Reading



"For me, reading is a full-bodied hunger that is spiritual as well as emotional and intellectual. In the poem 'The Cleaving,' by Li-Young Lee, there's this amazing line: 'my reading a kind of eating, my eating/ a kind of reading...' that describes what reading does for me as well as anything can. Reading is essential and sustaining: it nourishes me, fills me up and delights me, teaches me, makes me feel everything and think about everything, and connects me to the world. It not only shows me the path, but is often the path itself."


{
Catherine Chung is the author of the novel Forgotten Country, and a Granta New Voice. To learn more about her, visit her website at catherinechung.com.}


Friday, February 24, 2012

William Lychack, On Reading



"Aside from all of the obvious and ennobling reasons to read--information, education, entertainment--I also find that reading somehow suspends the conscious mind. I mean, I've never not found the answer to some problem or question or impediment in my writing life in my reading life. Among other things, the act of reading seems to true my tires, and when my writing life is going well it seems that my reading life is going well as well."


{
William Lychack is the author of a novel, The Wasp Eater, and a collection of stories, The Architect of Flowers, and his work has appeared in The Best American Short Stories, The Pushcart Prize, and on public radio's This American Life. For more information, please contact, lychack.com.}

Thursday, February 23, 2012

PG-50






PG-50
Theatre 810
Presented by Acting Unlimited Inc.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

machado

Monday, February 13, 2012

dan chaon | stay awake



"I think what I start out with is some kind of image or scene, and then from there I'll work towards a character. From the character and that moment then I think plot will begin to emerge. With a lot of stories, the opening image is frequently the thing that I started with -- whether it's the image of the baby with two heads, or the image the guy hitting the deer in the semi. Then I tend to begin to explore the characters in these images and make them move forward in some sort of plot-like way."

--Book Talk: A Peek into Loss and Darkness with Dan Chaon







Stay Awake: Stories
By Dan Chaon

Sunday, February 12, 2012

robert j. flaherty | louisiana story



Satyajit Ray: "I had seen Louisiana Story in England. I found it quite inspiring. I liked other films too, but Flaherty's films and Renoir's films had an affinity to my work because of the setting and the people involved... in the trilogy ones."

--British Film Institute







Louisiana Story
Directed by Robert J. Flaherty

October 1948



Saturday, February 11, 2012

pincel de zorro


Pincel De Zorro (Ediciones Ondina)










Pincel De Zorro

Direction, Design and Animation: Hug Codinach
Illustrations: Meritxell Ribas
Text: Sergio Sierra
Music: Albert Alay


Friday, February 10, 2012

Mud Luscious Press | Matt Bell



by Matt Bell
Mud Luscious Press
105 pgs.
April 2012
$12 ($10 pre-order special)

\ f. scott fitzgerald / (6:12-6:36) |might have might not have|





Sunday, February 5, 2012

Khadijah Queen, On Reading



"Reading is everything: magical, spiritual, practical, easy, difficult, necessary, strange. It's a slog, a transport, an anchor, entertainment and a tool of survival. I learned to read at age three and have loved all of it, my whole life, from Lois Duncan to the Narnia Chronicles as a child – so far away from the gunshot soundtrack of my '80s-in-South-Central-L.A. childhood, yet such relevance, comfort, offer/utterance of possibility; to Stephen King and Alice Walker and Malcolm X as a teenager; to Audre Lorde and Helene Cixous and Lucille Clifton and Fernando Pessoa in college. Recently Craig Thompson's Habibi and Lynn Nottage's Ruined rocked my reading world. And before that, Shahrnush Parsipur's Women Without Men and Salvador Plascencia's The People of Paper – (speechless awe). Even books I didn't like (or detested – anything by Heidegger, for example) still activated something in me – if only a fight or flight response. Reading is an endless loop. Books surround and fill me. I have too many. I don't have enough. I write to empty, then turn to reading, to living, fill up again."


{
Khadijah Queen's most recent book, Black Peculiar, won the 2010 Noemi Press book award for poetry. Visit her website: khadijahqueen.com.}


Saturday, December 17, 2011

Mark Leidner, On Reading



"Reading is like getting a ride somewhere. You don't have to fight traffic, worry about cops, old maps, malfunctioning GPSs; you don't choose the music, the speed, or how aggressively or defensively to drive; you don't have to use your body, or your eyes if you don't want to; you're not responsible for anything, etc. The driver handles all that. You just sit there and look around while all the scenery you have no control over washes through your field of vision. In this way reading has always felt lazy and unmeaningful to me, compared to writing. But sometimes you're in the hands of a driver so capable, and the ride is so spectacular, that you forgive yourself for not having caused it. I think that's called humility... I'm not sure."


{
Mark Leidner is the author of The Angel in the Dream of Our Hangover (Sator Press, 2011), a book of aphorisms, and Beauty Was the Case that They Gave Me (Factory Hollow, 2011), a book of poetry. He grew up in Georgia and now lives in Northampton, Massachusetts.}


Friday, December 2, 2011

Claudia Smith, On Reading



"I wish I could read the way I read as a child. When I write, I still lose myself the way I did in books back then but now, things are hectic. I can't luxuriate in a book all night, listening to the rain, impervious to time. There are too many things to do.


My grandparents had a room they called 'the junk room.' It was filled with canned goods, decorations for every season, dry goods, and what my grandmother called various and sundry things.

There were also books. We weren't allowed in the room. It was where Santa kept his presents, and thrifty Santa shopped for Xmas all year long. But I read whatever I found.

I was sickly and somehow I always got well when I stayed with my grandmother. She believed if you were sick you had to stay in bed. I didn't mind this at all. I read for hours in the big blue room with a shaggy dog named Poppy curled up beside me. She was a mutt with Beagle eyes and she would gaze at me with love as I read all the Grimm's fairytales -- the ones with the most unfortunate endings -- aloud to her. At some point my grandmother had belonged to the book of the month club, and these books had wonderful titles. She was a James Herriot fan. I read So Dear To My Heart and I discovered Betty Smith. I found a book called Apple Tree Lean Down and must have read it three or four times one summer. I discovered a whole series of Nancy Drew mysteries published in the nineteen-teens. I read Hans Christian Anderson. One winter, my grandmother gave me an old brass bell and told me to ring it if I needed her. I only rang it a once and I was treated to a tray of Campbell's tomato soup with cheesy fish crackers in bed. Sometimes I had a plate of apples and cheese. I gained weight, stopped vomiting all the time, and read and read and read.

That room seems very precious and close to me even now. There were high windows, and trinkets on the dresser. I read At The Back Of the North Wind on a cold sunny day, with curtains stirring slightly in the breeze. I remember this! I also remember discovering Wuthering Heights. I didn't know what it was about at all, and this was my most delicious find. I remember finding the old paperback in a closet. Healthcliff and Cathy were kissing on its cover, and all the muscles of her beautiful white neck were taut. Heathcliff was wearing something velvet with a puffy white shirt. He was tall, dark, handsome. That is my first memory of wanting to kiss someone.

The book started out humdrum, and I almost put it down. But then came a dream with a waifish girl begging to be let in, and the ghost story transformed into a dark love story! I read that one pretty much straight through. I had no idea what Wuthering Heights meant to English departments around the country. I just knew I loved the moors and that twisted romance more than any of the gentle romances I'd pulled off the junk room shelves.

The joy of reading -- and it is my joy -- for me is much like the joy of writing. When I read that dark romance so many years ago, there was nothing and no one between me and the page. It didn't matter how many had read those words; in that blue room, Heathcliff and Cathy were mine alone. I didn't even read about them to Poppy."


{Claudia Smith is the author of The Sky Is A Well And Other Shorts (Rose Metal Press) and Put Your Head In My Lap (Future Tense Books). Her stories have appeared in several journals and anthologies, including Norton's The New Sudden Fiction: Short Short Stories From America And Beyond. More about her work may be found at claudiastories.com.}


Monday, November 28, 2011

Melissa Broder, On Reading



"I am a very hungry and thirsty girl. I have an infinite god-shaped hole inside. I want to be sated and de-thirsted 24 hours a day. If I can’t be sated and de-thirsted 24 hours a day I want to be lifted up out of my body so I don’t have to feel anything or so I can feel only euphoric. Sometimes poetry does one of these things for me: sates or de-thirsts or lifts. I read my first poems at six. I wrote my first poems at eight. I have since tried many other ways to fill the god-shaped hole, but poetry is one of the safest ways I know how. The main consequence of reading poetry, for me, is writing poetry."


{
Melissa Broder is the author of two poetry collections, Meat Heart (forthcoming from Publishing Genius, 2012) and When You Say One Thing But Mean Your Mother (Ampersand Books, February 2010). Visit her here for more information.}


Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Robert Kloss, On Reading



“I’ve never really thought about why I read or what it means to me. I’ve never had the need to justify the action, even when my father or my teachers made me feel like it was a less than healthy activity — I just sneaked around to do it. Honestly, I think I just fell into the habit when I was very young and I always kept at it. But, then again, I was always good at it and it was one of the few things I was good at so for whatever reason it was a natural activity. It was also one of the few things I liked to do so I did it whenever I could. At the moment I started to read I also started to write and I think the two have always been bound up in each other. Writing was the other thing I liked to do that I was also good at. Had I been able to draw or had I been able to sing or had I been more athletic things may have worked out differently. Slowly I think the writing cannibalized the reading, so now most or all of my reading happens so that I can write — it’s research or its inspiration, searching for power. I read how Melville wrote Moby-Dick while reading Shakespeare and Greek tragedy and Sterne and Rabelais and how those geniuses somehow unlocked his own genius. I have to admit I have always tried to do the same thing, with not quite as startling results. So I suppose if I have any requirement of the books I read, now, its that they should startle me. I don’t read for a good yarn or to gain some insight into why people do what they do or some other abstract insight: I suppose I read to be startled and amazed by something brilliant and awesome, like an old time prophet caught in the glow and hum of the burning bush.”


{Robert Kloss is the author of How the Days of Love & Diphtheria (Mud Luscious Press/Nephew) and The Alligators of Abraham (Mud Luscious Press, 2012). He is found online at rkbirdsofprey.blogspot.com.}




Monday, October 17, 2011

Ryan Call, On Reading



"My mother has a rule regarding books: don't throw them. As children, my sister and I were not allowed to throw books in our parents' house. We could throw other objects, certainly, and we did throw other objects, often at each other, but we did not throw books. Now, whenever I throw a book, I think about my mother and how much I love her."


{
Ryan Call is the author of The Weather Stations (Caketrain). His stories appear in Mid-American Review, New York Tyrant, Conjunctions, Annalemma, and elsewhere. He teaches English and coaches cross country at a high school in Houston. Visit him here for more information.}


Sunday, October 9, 2011

Alissa Nutting, On Reading



"I grew up in a very safe, boring home. It’s no accident that ‘boring,’ as a verb, means ‘to drill a hole.’ Life as we currently experience it gives us a lot of holes, from boredom and many other places; voids that we fill with a variety of things, by necessity, in order to feel full enough to keep going. I’ve tried quite a few methods of easing the pain of lack (an inescapable pain that even the best live-rs will feel now and then, given our temporary lives, faulty bodies, and general dearth of control). Of every salve I’ve tried, I would like to give my endorsement to books.

As a child, books were the spaces where I could go make all the unwise decisions I knew deep down I wanted to make but was not permitted (they still are, except now I’m the one not permitting myself). For every urge, there is a book (and if there isn’t, you need to write it please). For every problem, there is a book (and if there isn’t…). Putting yourself between covers—inside an open book—is just as intimate and vulnerable an act as putting yourself between the sheets of a bed. You and the author are communing together in a way that no one else can ever know or experience.

Plus reading is the most polite selfish act ever. Sitting in a corner and reading, I emit very little waste or sound. I am not distracting to others. This is a benefit not to be underappreciated in a crowded world.

I mainly live in books, and have ever since I could read. Vicarious is an ugly word to many, but not to me, not when it comes to reading. Unlike a movie or video-game simulation, the act of reading is as personalized as a fingerprint. No two people have the exact same thoughts or visualizations when reading the same book. It’s an experience that is yours, and belongs to you, just as all that any of us ever have beyond the present—our memories—belong to us. Except for the current moment, we have nothing, really, but the slides stored in our imagination.

As a form of acquisition, reading makes me wildly greedy. I try to read up on anything I’m curious about, afraid of, obsessed upon, or unfamiliar with. Reading is another word for more—more experience, more knowledge. More understanding. When I want more, I read, and it feels like I get to throw a few more handfuls of dirt into the chasms, the omissions of life that sting."


{
Alissa Nutting, an Assistant Professor of Creative Writing at John Carroll University, is the author of the short story collection Unclean Jobs for Women and Girls. Her website is alissanutting.com.}


Saturday, October 1, 2011

Tim Horvath, On Reading



"My daughter is learning how to read right now one room over at the very moment I’m writing this. And I am sitting on the couch, or was until I broke off to write this, learning how to read myself. We talk about knowing how to read as if it is like knowing how to tie shoelaces, or how to prepare a particular meal—an either/or, a process that we might master, proudly strutting in our newly-knotted sneakers and ladling lobster-speckled paella onto plates. But the more I do of it, the more I suspect that we never really know how to read. It might sound like I’m being archly postmodern, taking shots at fish-barrel range at the very possibility of knowledge, but that’s not what I’m going for.

My daughter sounds out words…oftener she gets them right, the short ones almost always. She asks things like “is it a ‘c’ or a ‘k’ in ‘crackle?” She gets stymied on 'musicians.' She writes 'j' for 'ch' and in her own story writes 'ixclamd,' which I can only think of as a word in a language spoken somewhere with a brutal climate. Her questions, when they arise, are readily answered. The fun, for her, has just begun.

It verges on cliché that every difficult book must teach the reader how to read it. These days I am dipping into Joshua Cohen’s Witz, in which I might get hung up on 'the throb of shaigetzes.' But most of the words in Witz are familiar; it is not the vocabulary that makes it a challenging, if uncommonly pleasurable read. It is more that with its gushing, pagelong sentences and profusion of allusions, it is just plain tough going. To know when to count a clause/sentence/page done, or done enough to move on. Impossible? Maybe, maybe not. The point is, though, that I will never know how to read this book. And I often wonder whether reading even simpler, more straightforward books is just as mysterious.

In this spirit, then, I ask, do you know if you’ve read a book? If you have read all but the last twenty pages have you read it? When, as a teacher, I assign reading, I expect my students to read. Sometimes the ones who have can’t provide specific details from what they’ve read, and sometimes those who haven’t can rattle them off like they wrote the thing. But even if we put the most flagrant cases of those who didn’t read on one side of the room (the spine uncracked, rods and cones that don’t know from the ink in question), I wonder how much those who have read really have in common. Have you read a book if you have consciously looked at all the words? What does 'consciously' mean? (Send in the neurophilosophers). Have you read a book if you have read it quickly and enjoyed it but not really reflected, not really thought about it? What is reflection, and how does it differ from recollection? Every reading a rereading, Nabokov mused, okay. But how do you even know if you've reread the first time? What makes you so sure? If your mind wandered, how much attunement to the words on the page qualifies you for to get the sticker, like the ones we wear on Election Day, that announces 'I READ'? In my daughter’s case, she might get actual stickers…

To read is just a damned odd verb, is what I want to say. Can we use place as an analogy? It strikes me that it’s a lot easier to know that you’ve visited a place than that you’ve read something. I suppose we could each visit a place and have such utterly different experiences of it that it seems like an entirely different place, and the same might be said for a book. Could we have such utterly divergent encounters with a book that it becomes, for all intents and purposes, two books? Actually bifurcates? Book cloning? Is that ethical? What I’m getting at, more broadly, can be underscored by this juxtaposition of reading and visiting a place. (But maybe we should problematize traveling, too. One might visit a place deeply or superficially. I want to at least think of myself as a proponent of deep traveling, not only wide.)

What is depth? What is width? In terms of reading, most, I think, would agree that reading widely helps you to read deeply, situates you in a context that helps your understanding of any individual work, and possibly we could say the same about traveling, that having been to many places augments your ability to appreciate a new place. But is that so? Could wide reading, in some instances, dilute, as going a bunch of places in rapid succession can make the places themselves seem too much the same, introduce too many parallels to be useful, turning it into routine and numbing the eyes and ears, all the senses with a surfeit of too-familiar exoticism? Well, could reading too widely do the same? Perhaps one ought to read with a deliberate narrowness, dwell in a single book for a year or more as we do with those we author. When others are consuming by the hundreds, trading favorites, rookies-of-the-year, etc. will you tout your scuffed, dogeared pair fifty times apiece? Is narrowness necessary, or even desirable, for depth? I do not know how to answer these things.

What I do know is that I am always learning to read. Nowhere does the dictum 'Zen mind, beginner’s mind' weigh so aptly. Sure there are times I’ll feel the opposite, the literary equivalent of pulling into the umpteenth city on a puddle-hopping whirlwind tour, jet-lagged and burned out. Another sleep-deprived innkeeper whose mustache flops onto the coffee-stained check-in registry? Another overzealous shopkeeper? I’ll read things where I’ll feel like 'I’ve already read this/seen this/been through this a hundred times before.' But more often I’m daunted. To take in all the undercurrents of sound, of implication, the unsaid, to translate between the spatio-temporal on the page and that in the world, to infuse voice and vision with life, to balance upright on the tendrils of text for the full swerve of a paragraph, giving due heed to every glint of nuance, to appreciate what the hell is going on in the story, to read both with and against the text and orthogonal to what is written…I will never really master this, I think, never get my sticker. Still, you will hear me go with convention and say 'I’ve read x, I’ve read y, haven’t read z yet, hope to get to it someday.' I will always be learning to read. But I do know that 'crackle' is spelled with a 'c,' unless it’s the candy bar, in which case yes, you can have exactly one."


{
Tim Horvath is the author of Circulation (sunnyoutside press) and the forthcoming collection Understories, which will be published by Bellevue Literary Press in May 2012. His stories appear in Conjunctions, Fiction, and elsewhere. He teaches creative writing at Chester College of New England and works as a part-time psychiatric counselor.}