Sunday, December 27, 2009

Time to Roll this Year's Credits

Ravi Mangla has done his second annual "Best of Wigleaf" post over at his blog. Loved this.

What follows: a list of every one of the writers who've allowed us to run their stories in Wigleaf this year.

I drink to all y'all. You've each made my year better.

Lauren Becker
Matt Bell
Crispin Best
Z.Z. Boone
Andrew Borgstrom
Blake Butler
Jimmy Chen
Myfanwy Collins
Lydia Copeland
Dawn Corrigan
Kristina Marie Darling
Cherie Hunter Day
Francisco Delgado
Katrina Denza
Spencer Dew
Ryan Dilbert
Trent England
Nicolle Elizabeth
Elizabeth Ellen
M.T. Fallon
Kathy Fish
Erin Fitzgerald
Roxane Gay
Barry Graham
Amelia Gray
Mary Hamilton
William Reese Hamilton
Jim Heynen
Sarah Hilary
Lily Hoang
Dave Housely
Tai Dong Huai
Debbie Ann Ice
Jamie Iredell
Jac Jemc
Stephanie Johnson
Jason Jordan
Tim Jones-Yelvington
Thomas Kearnes
Suzanne Lamb
Darby Larson
Tara Laskowski
Kirsty Logan
Ben Loory
Sean Lovelace
Conor Madigan
Kendra Grant Malone
Ravi Mangla
Kuzhali Manickavel
Piers Marchant
Corey Mesler
C. Robert Miller
Greggory Moore
Gary Moshimer
Edward Mullany
Tirumal Mundargi
Nuala Ni Chonchuir
Jason Lee Norman
Jennifer Pieroni
Meg Pokrass
Corinne Purtill
Paula Ray
Ryan Ridge
Tree Riesener
Ethel Rohan
Jake Ruiter
Fortunato Salazar
Ben Segal
Claudia Smith
Craig Snyder
Angi Becker Stevens
Terese Svoboda
Robert Swartwood
Chantel Tattoli
Beth Thomas
Ann Walters
Brandi Wells
Rachel Yoder
Joseph Young
Shellie Zacharia
Catherine Zickgraf

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

C Y I Dub The Collagist Best New Mag

The Collagist made my sort of eclectic list of 2009 Best Of's @ BIG OTHER.

The new issue is the flash fiction special. It includes winner and finalists of the FF contest, as judged by Kim Chinquee (Todd Cantrell, Stace Budzko, Chella Courington, and Kristine Uyeda), plus vsf by Jim Ruland, Jennifer Howard, Lindsey Merbaum and me. Haven't read beyond the fiction yet, but I can vouch for these stories. Like most Collagist fiction, each seems to open according to its own unique DNA.

My cont.: a short plus three micros from the American Gymnos project, a southern set. The short is called "A Note on the Lyrics." Probably I'll say more about it on the Collagist blog later. For now, big thanks to Matt and Steven and crew.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

LR's 2009 Bad Sex in Fiction Award

Littell's passage probably deserved its win--in that contextlessness makes it the most ridiculous. But Roth's is really worse, as writing. Dude was snoozing thru his sex scene. Check them all out heah.

My Turn @ the Unsaid Book Club

I've been enjoying these a lot. Much thanks to Dan Wickett and David McClendon for taking the trouble.

Ridiculous Chanukkah Music from Sasha Baron Cohen's Brother

Friday, November 13, 2009

Let the Wild Pimpage Start

Lots of action this month on American Gymnos.

Here's a detail from the pretty-likely cover -- by Philly-based artist James Ullmer.

The final list includes two more since last time I wrote about this: "Buffalo" and "Nashville."

Linking here to the first four ever to see daylight (sharable now that fictionaut has opened its doors).

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Six "Says" Pieces at Everyday Genius

It's Joseph Young's month there, and so far it's been a good one--w/ Greg Gerke, Kathy Fish, Justin Dobbs, and the man A Rob himself.

"Meliana," at 40-some words, is the longest of these I've done. There are five others too. Thnx to JY for taking them in.

Thursday, October 29, 2009


Among the stuff coming up this season @ Wigleaf: work by Jim Heynen. Linking here to Matt Briggs' excellent post about JH in his Rediscovered Reading column @ Fictionaut. Heynen is one of my first favorite writers of vsf, so--very excited about this.

And while I'm on the subject: story and p-card from Elizabeth Ellen up today. Probably goes w/out saying, but her stuff is don't-miss. EE pushes things further.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009


"SEED will be a historical first: a short-story collection that you can also stick up your vagina or rectum." --Miracle Jones

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

"About Me and My Cousin" @ matchbook

I kind of feel like I hadn't even read this one until I read it there.

Yes, I wrote it. But take a look. You'll see why.

Brian Mihok and Edward Mullany do matchbook--and kudos to them: it's a great new mag. Super happy to have something there (and to have stuff forthcoming at The Collagist, which is the other of my favorite new mags).

Friday, October 9, 2009

Ultra Micro @ Nanoism

I have an untitled piece at Nanoism, Ben White's webmag, which, if you haven't checked it out, is a really nice venue. They've run lots of good stuff lately, including work by Peter Schwartz and Mercedes Yardley.

They're on Twitter, too, and are oriented towards that format: texts of < 140 chars w/ no titles.

I'll confess: I wrote this short on Twitter, wondering if there'd be some kind of magical zap if i got it down to 140 chars exactly (which i did!).

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Do I Really Care?

...that TriQuarterly is dead? People are falling all over themselves to decry the move to "open source." I don't think they even know what that means. Here's what it means: the admin. at Northwestern has regarded TriQ more or less as an organ of scholarship, a 'review' in the sense of peer review. Within the peer-review culture, the easier the pub is to acquire, the less stature it has. For example, I'll bet lots of money that TriQ wasn't free to students of Northwestern, even though their money funded it. Because if it had been free--even to students--it would have had less stature. It seems people are rushing to embrace the idea of stature itself. Something closed off. Distant and admirable. Fuck stature. I won't miss TriQ. I think there's a very good chance that, with the online ("open source") version of TriQ, the CW people at Northwestern will produce something a lot more compelling.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Pre-orderable: Sojourn #22

I haven't seen a TOC yet, but I sure do like the cover!

My cont. to this one is a set of 5 Gymnos, including the "Sandusky Gymnopedie," which was written to this song (U. Tupelo fans will have already guessed which one).

Sunday, October 4, 2009

rrreeedit: Ravi Mangla's "Gratitude"


What's Your Point?

These are real publications:

Tweet the Meat
Zombie Feary Tales
Untied Shoelaces of the Mind
Lady Churchill's Rosebud Wristlet
wtf pwm
Dark and Dreary Magazine.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Here's Something to Check Out

Have you seen Laura Ellen Scott's VIP/VSF blog? Some real goodness up today--bunch of collaborative micros, by Joseph Young and Kathy Fish. In their intro, they talk about the process, which involved each handing over five partials, to be completed by the other, as 'hybrids.'

J. Young: "What a great thing not only to take someone else’s words and work with them and care for them as if they were your own, but also to give over care of your own words, words so meticulously chosen and labored over, and entrust them to someone else."

Just recently I did something similar w/ Lily Hoang for her 'Unfinished Story' collection. In her recent conversation with Molly Gaudry, Lily says how the thing kind of started as a question: "How many people abandon perfectly good projects?" She says how she asked writers "to send me their trash, their discarded & unwanted, and I would promise to love them."

I'll wait to describe the particulars later, but, as J. Young says, it was an awesome experience/experiment. And the collaboration yielded a much more kick-ass story than I ever would have got by pushing on thru......

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

At Least Two People Have Taken Photos of Their Betty Boop Pumpkins and This Is One

Kirsty Logan's sort-of Halloween story, "All-Night Cartoon Party," is up @Wigleaf.

If after reading that you want more seasonal fiction, there's always Thomas Cooper's "The House on the End of the Street" in the archive.

Why the Betty Boop pumpkin? A.) Why not? B) There's a B. Boop mention in the K. Logan story.....

Anudder I-ivew

Fictionaut has just opened the curtain.

Nicolle E. interviewed me RE: the Wigleaf group for the f-naut blog last week. Here it is. (Two for the price of one: Barry G. is interviewed too).

Let me know if you want an invite (so's you can join the Wigleaf group).

Matt Bell's Dark Sky Interview

Recently I offered some considerations on lit on the net (for the note to accompany my upcoming thing in matchbook).

But I like Matt Bell's thoughts on this better.

Sunday, September 20, 2009


Craig Snyder's "Death City" is just up @ Wigleaf.

This story is delicious. Have seconds.

Speaking of CS, the September Rumble is out, with stuff by Dawn Corrigan, Roxane Gay and others.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

This Week @ the ASF Blog: On Ritual

The photo is of the new issue, which is just out (get it get it get it).

But this is about the blog: I've got some small # of words up today about writing ritual/routine. Stephanie Austin's (w/ a nice bit about candles) was up yesterday, and these people come later this week, one a day, i think: Amelia Gray * Matthew Salesses * Melissa Swantkowski * Josh Weil....

Saturday, September 12, 2009


This is where you get on and off the antique roller coaster on the lake in Arnold's Park, Iowa. I hadn't ridden this thing in years until this summer. This summer my kid turned 7 and was tall enough to ride finally. She's high strung, and I didn't expect her to want to ride more than once. Because like I said the thing is antique. The cars fly all over the place on the tracks--back and forth, up and down. All that keeps you from rocketing out is a single worn drop bar. No harnesses. No belts.

But my girl did want to ride again. And again and again.

I'd never gone so many times in a row. In the old days they didn't have day passes.

So I had occasion to notice: the ride ends without warning. You're flying, you're spun, and they slam on the brakes. So you're sitting there--right there where you see in the picture. Inside you all is still turmoil, but you're sitting perfectly still.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Spin Your Head on this Shit

1. The aesthetic is political
2. Your subject position tends to influence your aesthetics.
3. The boiling in your blood -- as you work some of this out -- is a pretty good sign that you're a fool.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Call for Subs: Southern Review Baseball Issue

Just heard about this.

I guess I'm excited because I actually have one to try them w/.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Les Nouvelles du Leaf

* No, we're not going print, but we're IN print--or Gary Moshimer is. On the back page of the new issue of Two One Five Magazine, an arts and culture glossy distributed for free in Philadelphia, is a "Wigleaf Presents" section, and Gary Moshimer's story "Birds" from this past spring. Looks like a strong possibility that we'll be working w/ the editors there on another tie-in story for the next issue.

* For a while I've been thinking about the possibility of starting a Wigleaf group/community platform. No place ever seemed quite right until now: we've just launched one on Fictionaut. The only problem: for a short while, anyway, Fictionaut is still in testing, which is to say you can't get in without a contact. Let me know (by comment or email) if you'd like to check it out right away: I've been given some 'invites' for this purpose.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

The Nurse Left Work at 5:00

And, leaving, her attention was drawn to a grasshopper, which it appeared someone had painted. Perhaps some small child. The grasshopper toiled in the road, struggling, dragging its cruelly besilvered limbs across the pavement.

The nurse stopped for a moment, those silver limbs flashing in her eyes like realizations.

Should she come to the assistance of another poor creature on this planet, unto whom no good had been done? The nurse debated.

She had an itch on her ass cheek, but she neglected this as a consideration in favor of that which for her was the Trump Card of Her Days.

Ronald had left her not two weeks before. And what had he told her -- terrible Ronald -- as he posed for her memory in the frame of her door? He had said, I've given what love I can give. I know my love is gleaming, baby, and I don't want to smother you.

And now the nurse realized: that painted grasshopper in the street: it was she! She'd been given a chance somehow to save herself via this mechanism. But what, oh what, would she do?

Saturday, August 22, 2009

RB on Twitter Fiction

There's an interesting post on Randall Brown's site about work in the, um, 140 character range. I was interested. (I confess to having written a short on Twitter's real-time character counter -- it's forthcoming in Nanoism).

Brown starts by talking about shorts in general and the test often put to them: "Can you deliver a story in so few words?"

More RB: "Even when [the short] gets Twittersized, people focus on the challenge of delivering a story with so few words. Personally, as either a writer or reader, I don't particularly want 140-character stories."

I'm like: right there with you, right there with you....

I'd actually take it further: not only don't I want them, I really dislike them. I love vsf for its openness, for the freedom it gives writers. But people who try to telegraph full story arcs in 140 characters have rapidly created what I'd call a tight genre -- the antithesis to openness. I mean, you know exactly how these things are going to go. You know how to read them, you know how to write them. Often the exercise turns on the ability to imply a single lurid punchline. Like, oh, she's been poisoning his food. Oh, he doesn't know that she's packing to leave him.

Traditionalists would go, This isn't fiction! Without sharing their reasons, I'd be close to agreeing w/ them.

Friday, August 21, 2009

You Know You Want It

"Jamie Iredell is a stylist with claws." OK, I made that up. But Jamie is double all right.

Here's the link.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Tomorrow I Will Shave My Face

and dress myself and go and sit with others, to whom I won't say much, though words will bump around

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Name that Rejection

We regret that we are unable to use the enclosed material.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

add meh add meh

After careful consideration, I have decided not to publish your--


After careful consideration, I have decided not to launch a Wigleaf group on facebook. I like the relative personalness of giving news about updates via my own fb account. So if you'd join a Wigleaf group, add me instead.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Guest Post by 4 yr old


Friday, August 14, 2009

Worm du Silk

I just heard they're making a Silkworm documentary.

I wish Tim Midgett would submit something to Wigleaf.

I guess the story of the documentary is: great band nobody ever heard of. That's a new one!

Here's something good. The guy w/ the dark facial hair is the drummer, Michael Dahlquist. He's dead.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

On Realism in Fiction

One of the best and really only reasons not to scrap old copies of Houghton Mifflin's Best American Short Stories annuals: the introductions.

Robert Stone edited one in '92. That's almost twenty years back, if you're counting. He worked a lot harder in his intro than most people do, offering a full and pretty enjoyable consideration of the first story in Dubliners, "Araby." Next he said this:

"As of the last decade of the twentieth century, the pleasures and principles of the short story seem to remain generally what they were in Joyce's day."

And how does he understand 'pleasures and principles'? You've got to read Stone's Joyce thing to get a full sense, but here's a big clue, from later in his intro:

"In their variety, these stories (chosen by Stone for the annual) reflect what is probably the most significant development in late-twentieth century fiction, the renewal and revitalization of the realist mode, which has been taken up by a new generation of writers. This represents less a 'triumph' of realism than an obviation of the old arguments about the relationship between life and language. As of 1992, American writers seem ready to accept traditional forms without self-consciousness in dealing with the complexity of the world around them."

Before I poke at those words, I want to articulate a sense of what lots of people would call the difference between then and now. Now, first of all, we're post 'generation.' I don't think there ever really were unified generations of American writers, but now everyone knows it. In the most obvious sense, as of 2009, you've got writers who work within the commercial economy of New York publishing; you've got writers who work within the subsidized economy of American universities and their presses; and you've got Indie writers, who work for free or within non-subsidized sub economies. Obviously there's a lot of blur between those lines, but I'll go on. Now, as of 2009, it also seems clear that American writers are no longer unified in their readiness "to accept traditional forms without self-consciousness in dealing with the complexity of the world around them." And this is probably truest of Indie writers, some of whom look back to the people Stone was tacitly burying in '92--people like Calvino, Barthelme, Coover.

Now for the poking. I'm not an expert on the rhetoric having to do with what Stone calls "old arguments about the relationship between life and language," but it seems to me that at its most basic, it would be like in painting. Do you go representational, like the old masters? Or do you completely cut the line between what you paint and whatever you might see--assuming you've taken your meds--on your walk to the newsstand? Do you go fully abstract? At its most abstract, writing is, you know --words, mixed around on paper. That can be interesting. Personally I like it more in poetry than in fiction. But it can be interesting. Regardless, I don't think it's really what Stone's talking about here. He's not talking about a Jasper Johns of fiction writing. (Who would that be?) He's talking more about fabulism, metafiction, those sorts of things. Why do I stress that? Because both fabulism and metafiction are ordinarily representational--that's to say, these stories often give us what we take to be people, and these people are often moving their limbs.

So then a realist, for Stone, might be this: a STRICTLY representational artist, a writer who deals with the 'complexity of the world' by trying to get us to pass through his prose to what we will take as that world.

I'm going to say some more about this, but first I want to bring in Adam Robinson, whose comments in a recent Dogzplot interview matched what I've heard from others in e-conversations.

Check this out:

"I read a story by Paula Bomer today called “An Important Day in the Life of Marjorie Wallace” that I think fits into the definition of the word “realist” (my quotes are meant to indicate the popular term, marked by straight prose where, for instance, the word “tree” denotes “a leafy plant with a trunk and branches”) and it was okay. It has a beautiful and effective conclusion that is worth reading the story for, but to me, the payoff doesn’t seem big enough to rationalize all the work she must have put into writing it. I mean, when the story was over, the sum of my thoughts was: huh. Not as a question or anything, just blank.

And plus, when you write that way – if you make a tiny little mistake, like she does with this clause – “a wonderful February sun falling onto her face” – you risk losing your audience. And mistakes like this are much more obvious in traditional, unmediated prose. Plus, in this story she has the main character, Marjorie, yell at a merely casual friend for not calling her six weeks earlier. I thought, “No one would do that.” So I was basically workshopping this story as I went along, even though I just wanted to read it for whatever reason people read stories. I did the same thing with a Barbara Taylor Bradford book I recently listened to in my car. With “realist” stuff, I always already feel like an expert on whatever a writer is talking about, and I get distracted by matching it up to my own perspective or something. I figure, why bother – unless there is some flat out stunning style to it."

As I'm reading Stone, he and Robinson are together in seeing realism as strictly (as opposed to loosely) representational--"straight" prose meaning transparent: "the word 'tree' denotes 'a leafy plant with a trunk and branches'." Why Robinson ends up saying "why bother" is to me really interesting, and really revealing, in terms of where lots of people are nowadays. As he says, when he reads realism, he ends up noticing 'mistakes.' I do this too. If realists--or 'strict representationalists,' as I'm seeing them here--are offering us only a vision of a world we can imagine we all share, then we, as readers, are going to invest something in asking the obvious question: is this REALLY the world we all share? And somewhere along the line, this question--which readers and writers both ask--starts to get pretty boring. Like, yes, a person might open a cupboard in the morning before realizing that in fact all of the clean cups are in the top rack of the dishwasher. Like, yes, a good deal of testy dialogue might precede someone or other's breaking into tears. That's pretty boring, right? That's realism for a lot of the more interesting writers nowadays. Realists deal not with what's plausible, in some cases, for certain individuals, but with what's PROBABLE, likely, for most people, in most cases. Strict representationalists give us consensus characters, about whom a majority might say, yes, that's us, these are our lives.

And, you know, that's like pretty dull (not to mention the political fact that people outside the consensus get buried).

Literary writers working within the subsidized academic economy may be the worst offenders here. Commercial writers, always focused on the big buck, tend more towards the exceptional. A homeless man's journey to the White House.... something like that.....

Back to '92: Though Stone was probably willing to consign people like Barthelme to the history books, I definitely don't think he was thinking about realism in this greatest-common-denominator way. His own fiction isn't much like that. And look at the stories he was talking about in his intro. This is from the third paragraph of one of the 'realist' stories Stone picked--DFW's "Forever Overhead":

"And dreams. For months past, there have been dreams like nothing before: moist and yielding and distant, full of busy curves, frantic pistons, soft warmths and great failings; and you have awakened through fluttering lids to a rush and a gush and a toe-curling scalp-snapping jolt of feeling from an inside deeper than you knew you had, spasms of a sweet deep hurt, the street-lights through your window blinds cracking into sharp stars against the black bedroom ceiling...."

I mean, if this was what we thought of as 'realism' now, I think we'd see more writers open to it.....

Kurt Vile

I love this guy.

Here, via The Fader, is an mp3 from his second full-length album, which is forthcoming from Matador. (The track is called "Overnite Religion.")

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Twitter Sucks

but I just put Wigleaf up there and will (grimace) 'tweet' when there are updates.

Monday, August 3, 2009

FALL ROUND-UP, or: Do I Really Want to Share Names with a Weed Killer?

If you edit something, you read subs, and if you read subs, most of what you read isn't going to delight you. Does that sound negative? It's meant more as a prelude to what I really want to say: the stuff that delights, it often REALLY delights. It's not just good. It's new. It's now. I mean, there's a reason I don't get subs from people like Paul Auster. Dude's accomplished. He's got channels. A lot of the people who read and sub to online mags--they don't have channels yet. They're working on their own, in the dark. And when they hit-- sometimes it's the most amazing, original stuff.....

A lot of the people who've offered their stories to Wigleaf in the last couple of years--they've already gotten a lot further in their writing lives. It occurs to me that it might be worthwhile to pass along some of their good and exciting news.

(Pls let me know about what I've missed here; will fix)

MEGHAN AUSTIN'S story, "Pittsburg," was named a Million Writers notable this spring. She and Kirk Lanzone are working on starting a literary podcast, Esperpentico.

LAUREN BECKER is the new fiction editor @ Dogzplot (Barry still does flash).

MATT BELL: Where to start? He's been named fiction editor at Dzanc's webzine, The Collagist, which gets going in a little under two weeks. He's published two chapbooks in the last year--HOW THE BROKEN LEAD THE BLIND (Willows Wept Press), and THE COLLECTORS (Caketrain). And the big news: Matt's full-length collection, HOW THEY WERE FOUND, is to be published by Keyhole Press in '10. (The title, I'm very happy to note, comes from his story in Wigleaf).

CRISPIN BEST has three e-books up @ Unnecessary Press, and his work made this year's Million Writers notable list.

RANDALL BROWN has recently done invited readings at Chico State and at the University of Pittsburg (with Sherrie Flick and Michael Kimball)

LEAH BROWNING'S second chapbook, PICKING CHERRIES IN THE ESPANOLA VALLEY, is due out from Dancing Girl Press this fall (I think I remember the title poem from Salome. It's good).

AARON BURCH'S collection of shorts, HOW TO PREDICT THE WEATHER, is being published by Keyhole Press (should be out before the end of the year.

BLAKE BUTLER: another 'where to start' here. He's had two books published in the last year, a novella, EVER, with Calamari Press, and a collection of linked stories, SCORCH ATLAS, with Featherproof. His work is featured in Dzanc's 2009 Best of the Web anthology and on the Million Writers notable list. With Shane Jones, he's launched a new press, Year of the Liquidator.

JIMMY CHEN's chapbook, TYPEWRITER, is out from Magic Helicopter Press. His work is also featured in Dzanc's 2009 Best of the Web anthology.

KIM CHINQUEE'S second collection, PRETTY, is in the works at White Pine Press. Her work made this year's Million Writers notable list.

THOMAS COOPER'S collection of vsf's, PHANTASMAGORIA, won Keyhole's chapbook contest and was published this spring (still a few copies available, I think, if you hurry).

LYDIA COPELAND'S chapbook of shorts is part of the much-anticipated FOX FORCE FIVE collective, forthcoming from Paper Hero Press.

DAWN CORRIGAN has had a hand in resurrecting the online mag, Girls with Insurance (she's an associate editor there now).

KRISTINA MARIE DARLING'S collection of essays, STRANGE GOSPELS, is out from Maverick Duck Press.

ELIZABETH ELLEN'S chapbook of shorts is part of the much-anticipated FOX FORCE FIVE collective, forthcoming from Paper Hero Press.

NICOLLE ELIZABETH has chapbook forthcoming from Achilles. Apparently she's also secured the role of 'young hipster girl' in a forthcoming Adam Sandler movie.

BRIAN FOLEY and E.B. Goodale have started up a new press, Brave Men Press.

MOLLY GAUDRY launched Willows Wept Press earlier this year (w/ the Matt Bell title). Her novel in verse, WE TAKE ME APART, is now pre-orderable from MLP. Her work is featured in Dzanc's 2009 Best of the Web anthology and on this year's Million Writers notable list.

GREG GERKE is now editing vsf for Buffalo Art Voice. His debut collection, THERE'S SOMETHING WRONG WITH SVEN, was published this spring (BlazeVox Books).

BARRY GRAHAM's debut collection, THE NATIONAL VIRGINITY PLEDGE, came out earlier this year (Another Sky Press).

AMELIA GRAY's debut collection, AM/PM, was published earlier this year by Featherproof. Her next collection, MUSEUM OF THE WEIRD, has won the FC2 Ronald Sukenik / American Book Review contest and will be published by FC2.

TAI DONG HUAI'S work made this year's Million Writers notable list.

JAMIE IREDELL may have a novel forthcoming from Orange Alert Press.

JAC JEMC's debut novel has been accepted by DZANC and will be published--when. '11?

STEPHANIE JOHNSON'S debut collection of stories (title story in Wigleaf!) is just out from Keyhole Press.

Film rights to SHANE JONES' novel LIGHT BOXES have been optioned by producer Spike Jonze. His next novel, THE FAILURE SIX, is forthcoming from Fugue State Press. With Blake Butler, he's launched a new press, Year of the Liquidator.

JASON JORDAN'S collection, CLOUD AND OTHER STORIES, is due out by the end of year from Six Gallery Press. (At the bottom of this post, check out Jason reading "Reverence" from Wigleaf at the Pear Noir #2 release.)

SEAN KILPATRICK has a book forthcoming from Six Gallery Press. His work made this year's Million Writers notable list.

SEAN LOVELACE's book of vsf, HOW SOME PEOPLE LIKE THEIR EGGS, won the Rose Metal Press contest and should be out by the end of the year.

KENDRA GRANT MALONE has e-books forthcoming from Happy Cobra and Bear Creek Feed.

RAVI MANGLA'S chapbook of vsf, HEAR YE KNIVES, is forthcoming from Achilles. He's started up a popular reading-list and interview site, Recommended Reading.

COREY MESLER's new novel, THE BATTLE OF THE TWO TOM MORES, is due out this fall from Bronx River Press. His work is featured in Dzanc's 2009 Best of the Web anthology and on this year's Million Writers notable list.

MARY MILLER'S first collection of stories, BIG WORLD, came out earlier this year from Long Drive/Short Flight.

DARLIN' NEAL'S work is featured in Dzanc's 2009 Best of the Web anthology.

PEDRO PONCE has a collection of shorts in the works at Willows Wept Press.

CLAUDIA SMITH'S next collection, PUT YOUR HEAD IN MY LAP, is due out from Future Tense by the end of the year. Her work is featured in Dzanc's 2009 Best of the Web anthology.

BRANDI WELLS' chapbook of shorts is part of the much-anticipated FOX FORCE FIVE collective, forthcoming from Paper Hero Press.

MYFANWY WILLIAMS' work made this year's Million Writers notable list.

KEVIN WILSON'S debut collection of stories, TUNNELING TO THE CENTER OF THE EARTH, was published by Harper Perennial earlier this year.

JOSEPH YOUNG'S collection of microfictions will be out by the end of the year from Publishing Genius Press.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

First of New Season

Dave Housley's story, "Pop Star Dead at 22." Plus p-card.

(very happy to get my face off the main page. have to do something else next yr. Ravi's face?)

Friday, July 31, 2009

Rumble: 5th Anniversary Issue

here, w/ stories by Krishan Coupland, Cami Park, Michelle Reale, Ryan B. Richey, and J.A. Tyler.

From the splashpage: "How intense is this issue? This issue will apply sufficient emotional force to your blunt skulls so as to cause their collapse!"

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Dialogue w/ 7 yr old

My daughter's friend was over for dinner last night.

N: I think H was just being so nice because she was at somebody else's house.

Me: Maybe

N: I do that. Do you do that?

Me: Pretty much.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009


Vsf's by Robert Bradley, Charles Lennox and Richey Piiparinen. Poetry by Molly Gaudry and others. Here.

Will Want to Hear Stories about This One

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Put Them out to Pasture

Shouldn't there be a list? Media types who really, really need to be put out to pasture?

I'll start.

1. Anthony Lane, NY'er film critic

This dude has been bad for a long, long time. But he's reached a kind of apotheosis in his review of Bruno. What I say: let him be prissy, self-satisfied and dense all day long. Let him do that while chewing grass in the back acre.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Bart-Ho #10

I craftily declined to tag any lit mag as my favorite when answering q's for Ravi Mangla's Recommended Reading. But I notice that a number of writers, maybe a plurality, say Hobart.

I say no surprise.

No. 10 is now available for pre-order. Do I need to say anything about it? Just do a little window shopping there.

Okay I'll say more:

If you look thru the back catalog, you'll notice that Hobart has reliably pubbed people before you knew who they were: Roy Kesey, Pia Ehrhardt, Pasha Malla, Jeff Parker, others.

Okay more yet:

Probably forever I'll be on the side of Hobart, even if they start running automotive porn or Junior League recipes. I'd list the pub. of my short @ Hobart online, "Acquired from Ex-Girlfriends," as one of maybe two life-changing pubs for me. Both were in late '96 (the other was my story "Lucky" in QF). At that point I'd become a little cynical about publishing. As compensation for the web pub, the Hobart guys gave me a one-year subscription, and when I got the first one -- #6 -- I was pretty blown away. I began to ask questions that seem 'duh' to me now -- like, is it a given that you should be subbing your stuff to mags you aren't even all that pscyhed about reading?

I'm going out of my mind waiting for new Unsaid to appear in my mailbox. After that happens, focus switches to Hobart #10.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

The Date, the Names

August 1st. Wigleaf restart.

Not in any order, but here are the names: Dave Housley, Conor Madigan, Cherie Hunter Day, Craig Snyder, Tirumal Mundargi, Kirsty Logan, Claudia Smith, Jimmy Chen, Paula Ray, Robert Swartwood, Catherine Zickgraff, Nicolle Elizabeth, Fortunato Salazar, C. Robert Miller, Andrew Borgstrom, William R. Hamilton, Greggory Moore, Roxane Gay, Lauren Becker, Ben Loory, Mary Hamilton, Jason Norman, Spencer Dew, Corey Mesler, Shellie Zacharia, Sean Lovelace, Tree Riesener, Thomas Kearnes and Sarah Hilary.

Is good so help me prop it, all.....

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Keyhole Digest for July

I’ve got a short in the new Keyhole Digest. The first two of these have featured work by friends and fantastics like Chad Simpson, Jennifer Pieroni, Charles Lennox, Ravi Mangla, Amelia Gray and Matt Bell. So I’m super pleased.

The new one has writing by Kim Chinquee, David Erlewine, Kathy Fish, Robert Krut, and Suzanne Lamb. My piece is the “Nashville Gymno.” The Digest is distributed for free in Nashville. At certain points of my vacation day here in Northwestern Iowa, I’m going to be imagining Nashvillians at certain points of their own days. I’m going to be imagining them reading my Nashville Gymno. They’re going to be imagining telling me how to dock a boat.

Quick plug: if you like the July Digest, remember to get yourself a copy of the awesome new issue of Keyhole Mag.

Bonus quiz: if you can guess which recent Keyhole Digest contributor has boyhood memories of the lake where I'm currently luxuriating, you win something or other. Haven't figured out what.

Friday, July 10, 2009


I left a blank word processing doc open on the computer.

My 4yr old boy, Levin, did this:



Thursday, July 9, 2009

I'm Pretty Sure This Will Be the First Time Anyone Has Ever Connected Dr. Seuss to Teenage Fanclub

I woke up w/ an old Teenage Fanclub song in my head, "Everybody's Fool." From 1990. That's a great one. "I don't fucking care / how you wear your hair / you're still fucking square-ehyeeaireahaireahaire..."

It's kind of like the anti Sneetches song. I love the Sneetches. Another great song. But if you really think about it, why the hell would the Sneetches without stars upon thars worry so much about not getting the invite to the Star Bellies' frankfurter roasts..... I can imagine that certain Plain Bellies would find themselves in a kind of hell at those parties.... They'd start to be glad that the Star Bellies had thought to mark themselves, so they could be thereafter avoided....

Friday, July 3, 2009

Buffalo Gymno @ Buffalo Artvoice

Did this one after the line-up for the chapbook was set. Shout out to Greg Gerke. It was kind of a tricky one, and his work on it was key.

Of course you'll have to check out Nicolle's stuff too if you hit the link. Super happy to be there w/ her.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Hint Fiction Guidelines


Opens Aug. 1.

Writing Journal

I used to keep a writing journal. In it I'd put story ideas, consider problems I was having w/ longer stuff, give reactions to great shit I was reading, etc.

I still have it but don't write in it any more. One possible reason: I have less time. Another: I write less longer stuff. Another: I don't have as many problems.

Maybe my favorite: lately most of the stories I write don't come from story 'ideas.' The Gymnos were probably key in this. Only one of them -- out of the forty-some -- came from an 'idea,' something I might have written down in advance. Since none is longer than 200 words, that seemed obvious -- to have them come during the composing.

But lately, writing slightly longer stuff, I've been doing the same thing. I've noticed this: if I write a story of 700 words that way, it feels to me like fifteen hundred afterwards, after I read it. No clue why that is.

Monday, June 29, 2009

SL on the T50

Guess it's a sign 'o the times that I blogged this on facebook first.

Sean Lovelace has been considering some of what's to be found in this yr's Wigleaf Top 50.

My take: he's not doing them for money so he's not writing anything he doesn't feel like writing. In other words, he doesn't seem too concerned about how well any one of these posts matches up to your or my idea of a 'review.' Which makes them a lot more fun to read than most reviews are, at least for me.

In his most recent, he approaches Laura Ellen Scott's "Render." Then he approaches it again. Then he approaches it again.....

Tuesday, June 23, 2009


I dreamed I was in this play and in this play was a Judas moment. I knew how to play the Judas moment, but I didn't know when it was coming or who from.

Maybe that was so it would be more authentic?

The Judas moment came in the communal shower. (I'm really hoping this isn't homoerotic.) I was in there with a character being played by Jack Nicholson as he looked in the 70s. The Jack Nicholson character had snuck in a broken-off bottom edge of a glass vase, and when I was washing my hair, he placed the thing right in back of me. I stepped on it directly, with my heel. Blood mixed with water.

I didn't then think of the line in the C. Forche poem about scooped-out knee-caps, but I think of it now.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

New Memorious

Excited to read this. There's fiction by Aaron Burch and Thomas Cooper. And there's poetry by my old friend and countryman Rebecca Black. (I read the first of hers, "How My Father Came by the Name of Cuthbert." Holy shite! Do not miss that!)

J. Lethem and W. Salas-Humara

I sent the link to my post about the Silos to the band's website and heard back from Walter Salas-Humara, who seems, as I might have guessed, a great guy.

He had some good news: the out-of-print album I was writing about -- The Silos / "The Silos" -- is available through their site on mp3 (apparently they don't have rights to the cover image; you have to look for the one that says, 'The one with the picture of a bird on it.')

He also gave me an update. The band's in the studio again now, and he's working with Jonathan Lethem on a "musical play." This would be a New York thing, I'm guessing. If it happens, maybe it will be my first trip to Broadway.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Pritchett and Nabokov

When Lolita came out, Pritchett sent Nabokov an insulated pot holder.

I wonder why I've always remembered this.

Sunday, June 7, 2009

upDately: Am. Gymnos

There's a long version of the story of how American Gymnopédies slipped into the queue at Willows Wept Press. The short version: Molly Gaudry and I got into the idea at the same time.

I just sent her the first final ms. First final? Something like that....

Of the forty-some I've done, thirty-five are included.

It's still a long way off (sets will come first in Sojourn and Hobart 11), and order and/or line-up may change; but for now....

Houston Gymnopédie 1
D.C. Gymnopédie 2
Kansas City Gymnopédie 3
Baltimore Gymnopédie 4
Asheville Gymnopédie 5
Greenbrier Gymnopédie 6
Atlanta Gymnopédie 7
Seattle Gymnopédie 8
Rockland Harbor Gymnopédie 9
Manhattan Gymnopédie 10
St. Louis Gymnopédie 11
Big Sur Gymnopédie 12
Oklahoma City Gymnopédie 13
Salt Lake City Gymnopédie 14
Albuquerque Gymnopédie 15
Detroit Gymnopédie 16
Des Moines Gymnopédie 17
Cheyenne Gymnopédie 18
Wichita Gymnopédie 19
Sandusky Gymnopédie 20
West Palm Beach Gymnopédie 21
Boston Gymnopédie 22
Santa Cruz Gymnopédie 23
Baton Rouge Gymnopédie 24
Sioux Falls Gymnopédie 25
Newark Gymnopédie 26
Philadelphia Gymnopédie 27
Duluth Gymnopédie 28
Richmond Gymnopédie 29
Flagstaff Gymnopédie 30
L.A. Gymnopédie 31
Omaha Gymnopédie 32
Chicago Gymnopédie 33
Mississippi River Gymnopédie 34
Minneapolis Gymnopédie 35

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

My Wife Blurbs TWILIGHT

"It may be dumber than the Da Vinci Code."

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Keyhole #7

I'm glad there's a new issue of Keyhole so I can stop picturing that frightening drill from the Matt Bell story in the last one.

I made a stupid remark on facebook about how a lot of 'my boys' are in this issue. Do you need somebody to make a stupid remark for you? I'm your guy. What I meant was that there are a lot of people in this issue whose writing I admire and enjoy muchos.

My contribution to #7 is 7 of those Gymno things. This set includes some of my favorites. "Cheyenne" is one. And then the last one, "Boston," which is set during the early part of WWII and features the young Alden Pyle.

Friday, May 22, 2009

Unsaid #4: Out!

It's funny to imagine Unsaid editor David McLendon sitting down to a meeting w/ some MBA doing consulting work. The MBA would say 'Dude,' thinking this was McLendon's language. Dude, your release party for #4 was last night--in New Hampshire? Dude, your website says 'current issue! no. 3.' Dude, the only picture of the cover of the new one is on your freaking Facebook page. Dude, no paypal? Dude, come on.

One of the things that's so awesome about Unsaid: DM isn't really trying to sell you anything here. It's hard to think of any mag less focused on the sell. Email DM, though, and you can get one.....

I mean look at this...


Wednesday, May 20, 2009


I've written six shorts in two mornings. Three I'm pretty excited about -- gymnos for Rockland Harbor, Salt Lake City and NYC.

So why do I still feel worthless?

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Hint Fiction Winners

If there's going to be any lasting evidence of this 'Year of the Micro' thing, it may be Robert Swartwood's Hint Fiction anthology, which he's recently announced is forthcoming from Norton.

This all comes out of the contest. Stewart O'Nan's picks are now up on RS's website.

Desert Island Collections @ RECOMMENDED READING

I think I'm going to annotate this list here, little by little.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Wet Dreeming

I'd really like to find some stranger's picture on the internet and create a facebook account for this person. I don't know what the name would be. I'd have to see the picture first. But let's just say Bob. Then I would have Bob add me, the real me, as a friend. Then I would have him add my sister. It would be so enjoyable waiting to see if my sister would give in and friend Bob. If she did, I would have Bob friend my mother. I'm pretty sure my mother wouldn't take Bob on as a friend, but I'd want to test it out. Once I got bored w/ my family, I'd start having Bob friend my other friends. The writers would be easy. The writers would say, Who is this guy? And then they'd look at mutual friends and go, Oh, a writer. It would be a little more fun to have Bob friend my old friends from high school. If they took him on, I'd have him leave half-true memories on their walls. Like, Do you remember that time you were passed out on the couch and turned over and threw up in my shoes?

How would people deal w/ that? I wonder.

And the statuses. I'd have Bob really go to town w/ the statuses. I'd have him say that he was thinking of dish soap. Two minutes later, I'd have him say that he was still thinking of dish soap. An hour later, I'd have him say that he'd been thinking of dish soap all this time. Then the next morning I'd have him ask, Does your ass ever itch? And a few minutes later: my ass itches right now. And a few minutes later: I don't know what to say right now because I'm not really thinking about my ass as much as thinking about not thinking about it. And then a few minutes later: it doesn't itch any more!

Obscure Anniversaries: "The Silos / The Silos"

I'm thinking ahead to next year here (you've got to be early if you want be the first to note a big anniversary):

Albums of 1990. Are there any big 20th anniversaries coming up?

I took a look at the Grammies of that year. Incredibly lame. Milli Vanilli won one.

In Pitchfork's list of 100 Best Albums of the '90s, only six from 1990 make the list: Pixies' "Bossanova," Cocteau Twins' "Heaven or Las Vegas," Breeders' "Pod," Sonic Youth's "Goo," Ride's "Nowhere," and Public Enemy's "Fear of a Black Planet."

Some good albums in there. I loved "Goo." But it's not "Daydream Nation." And "Fear of a Black Planet" -- same thing: it came second... It's not "It Takes a Nation of Millions."

So no big 20ths there.

What about from the mainstream lists? Also some good ones: Jane's Addiction's "Ritual do lo Habitual," Sinead O'Connor's "I Do Not Want What I Haven't Got," LL Cool J's "Mama Said Knock You Out," and Neil Young & Crazy Horse's "Ragged Glory."

Of all of these I've just mentioned, I think the Sinead O'Connor album is maybe most ripe for a big 20th next year.

But here's one that's even more deserving. It was left off nearly all the lists that year: The Silos' major label debut from RCA: "The Silos." It was the band's third album. Their second, "Cuba," is also fantastic, but with "The Silos" they really reached something....

Actually it was on one best-of list: Entertainment Weekly's Top Ten of 1990. That kind of shows how lost this album was, in terms of finding a market for itself that year. Here are some words on the album taken from the Silos website: "Its spacious, organic quality made it seem out of place in 1990; however, looking back at the album from within the Alternative-Indy glow of the decade's end, The Silos resonates like the work of visionaries."

My own take: thing of beauty. 'Spacious and organic' is really right. You can hear the bend in the spaces between singer-songwriter Walter Salas-Humara and his bandmates in the recording studio. The songs pop, but some of them, in the middles, get so quiet--quiet in a real way, an un-stagy way: it's almost like you're listening to something you shouldn't, something private.

Maybe my favorite thing about the album--and this is also very much in force on the predecessor, "Cuba" -- is how Salas-Humara makes intense affecting songs from the most simple, everyday materials: work schedules, the dispositions of friends, neighborhood gatherings, photos of old girlfriends, drives to the airport....

This is from "Out of Town": "I remember you telling me about a girl that you used to hang around with / you know I never did really believe it too much"

There's a lot of remembering going on in "The Silos." BUt it's not weak or nostalgic. It's full and primary, which seems right for guys in their twenties, which I think they were then....

Anyway good luck tracking this one down: the album's out of print....

Friday, May 15, 2009

Desert Island Collections (of Stories)

The rules: each of the last eight decades—including the one in progress—must be represented. No one decade can be represented more than twice. Collections may contain vsf but not novellas. Collections may not be retrospective (i.e. no 'Selected' or 'Collected' stories). You have twelve picks.

I made up those rules. One of my great pleasures in life: following rules of my own making.

What's on yr list of twelve? My list of twelve goes up soon @ Ravi Mangla's new site, Recommended Reading.

Monday, May 11, 2009

"Premises for an Action Plan" @ ASF

It's a web exclusive, part of the new monthly 'Pin-up' series of shorter stories, in the 1500 word range. The first few--by Laura Madeline Wiseman, Matthew Salesses and Stephanie Soileau--have been out-of-hand good.

Can't say enough about how awesome everyone there has been during the process. Very excited about this.

*update: tiny bit of background available at the ASF blog.

ryan manning v. scott garson

What if everything in the world was destroyed except for the part of the server containing Ryan Manning's Thunk interviews?

I like to imagine a tiny band of survivors reading ryan manning v. tao lin.

Mine's not as singular. But it now exists.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Darlin' Neal's Wigleaf story in Dzanc's Best of the Web '09

"Powwow," from February, I think. Go Darlin'!

Dan Wickett writes that the volume is now available for pre-order. A full list of contributors accompanies the announcement. Several Wigleaf friends, contributors among them (Go Molly!).

Monday, May 4, 2009

Nu @ HObart: "Ode to a Bad Album..."

As everybody knows, Hobart is one of the best reads on the net, so I'm happy happy to be there.

I think this is Matt's issue, so thanks to him. And thanks also to photo editor Ryan Molloy, who always does a great job and has done a great one in the case of my story particularly, I think. ANd thanks also to Aaron and the web team, for indulging me and putting in the Songza links. (I read it this morning with "Before They Make Me Run" playing from a minimized window. It was AWESOME!)

Other May people: Stephanie Johnson (whose collection, forthcoming from Keyhole Press, is purty impressive), T.M. DeVos, Sean Lovelace and David Aichenbaum. Like me, DeVos exposes Matt's weakness for recorded music. I read her story, "The Quality Controller," in proof a few days ago (I wasn't planning to -- just couldn't stop). Let me say: it's a good one. I dig how she sets up the peculiar scenario, and I dig the scenario itself. DeVos probes it fully, and yet the story has a really light touch, an uncertainty which seems right for its people....

Did I say enough right there to earn that 'Short Story Month' logo at the bottom of this post? Dan Wickett, I wait for your word.

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Self-Interview RE: My Kid's Joker Obsession

Q: Is it really an 'obsession'?

A: She was mildly obsessed with tornados last summer. But six-year olds don't really get obsessed. So no, not an obsession. But she does kind of go nuts when and after we watch a Joker episode of Batman (the Animated Series.) She laughs maniacally and repeats all the dialogue, which is kind of creepy, because she's got it word for word.

Q: You're concerned.

A: No. I like to play like I'm concerned. Really I'm a proud father. I'm like, That's my girl!

Q: Why?

A: You know, there's a lot of dumb-ass lessons in kids' media. The values are all right, but the art is a yawn. I like to see her running with her delights.

Q: And why does the Joker delight her?

A: That's the Q, isn't it? What's especially interesting here is that in most all other cases she really really doesn't like it when the good guys are seriously vulnerable to the bad guys.

Q: And the opposite is the true in this case?

A: Not exactly. She's not disappointed when Batman nabs the Joker in the end. But she's not really pulling for Batman either. And she seems to really enjoy the parts where Joker fucks with his good-citizen captives.

Q: A six-year old sadist?

A: Let me go at that earlier Q--why Joker delights her. In her favorite episode, the Joker escapes from prison on Christmas Eve and immediately commandeers all the broadcast media in Gotham City. Bruce Wayne and his young ward (this is not the time for my usual adolescent jokes) are just sitting down to watch It's a Wonderful Life, but there's a message -- 'We interrupt this programming' -- and Joker comes on with his 'special.' He's got three special guests--the bound and candy-gagged Commisioner Gordon and a cop and a TV reporter, whom he's dressed as a 'family': "Daddy Lawful, Mommy Lawful and Baby Lawful." He teases them cleverly. He's got a laugh track lined up.

Q: This delights her because...?

A: There's no way to know, but here's what I'm thinking: it has to do w/ authority -- the voice of it, the image of it. How Joker always undermines these, but without really doing much harm.

Q: Without doing harm?

A: Joker likes toying with people more than he does hurting them. That's what comedy itself is about, right? Good comedy always involves the transgression of abstract boundaries. Joker's an embodiment of that. Order, sobriety, providence, gender, rationality, politesse, law -- all of this gets fucked with when Joker is around. Just in terms of vibe, I think that's what she's into.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Just UP

Ravi Mangla's "Jupiter."

A good one.

Obscure Anniversaries: "Bee Thousand."

Fifteen years back.

It was the first GBV disc to get any notice. Here's an mp3, via Aq. Drunkard, of the most radio-ready of the tracks, "Hot Freaks."

But it wasn't really radio-ready. What I've always loved most about GBV is the loose weave, how you can hear the rock-star daydreaming going on.

Friday, April 24, 2009

Dogzplot FF and More

I've got one in the new batch, the "Eau Claire Gymnopédie."

Here's the rest of the line-up: Robb Todd, Kathy Fish, Brandi Wells, John Stadler, Greg Gerke, Ricky Garni and Robert Scotellaro.

Brandi Wells is also going to be in Fox Force Five, the now pre-orderable chapbook collective from Paper Hero Press, along w/ Elizabeth Ellen, Lydia Copeland, Andrea Kneeland and Suzanne Burns. This is looking fairly cant-miss-ish, no?

And Greg Gerke--his debut collection of shorts and longers, There's Something Wrong with Sven, is just out from Blaze Vox books. Here's enticement: Greg's Eyeshot story, "Loose Ends."

Me Reading No Colony #2

Who is Isadora Bey? And could it really be true that she lives in a place like Kansas City?

I can't talk about this story without using exclamatory expletives. I can't talk about this story.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Pre-orderable: Dewclaw #1

Great name: Dewclaw.

Names are important, especially when the thing doesn't exist yet (as Dewclaw didn't when I subbed).

I have a feeling about this one. I get the sense that Evelyn Hampton (whose own work I get to check out in the upcoming issue of Unsaid) is thinking of the mag itself as a kind of composition, which of course it is -- but I don't know how many eds think of it that way... I saw proofs the other day, and the page design is out of sight.

Really, really looking forward to sitting down w/ it.

Get it now. Get it here.


Claire Donato
Matthew Simmons & Amy Minton
Mike Young
Blake Butler
Rachel B. Glaser
Claire Becker
Shya Scanlon
Cherri Wood
Amina Cain
Kathryn Regina
Matthew Salesses
Scott Garson
Jessica Treat
Leslie Patron
Isadora Bey
Stephanie Brachman

p.s.: for some internet encouragement, read Amina Cain in Action, Yes, or Rachel B. Glaser in elimae.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Nu Nu Nu Nu

@Wigleaf: Elizabeth Ellen's "Samuel L. Jackson Is Not a Good Name for a Rabbit." (I sent her an anonymous hair box to induce the sending of this story.)

@Keyhole: Molly Gaudry's i-view w/ Jimmy Chen about Typewriter, his chapbook just out from Magic Helicopter Press.

Monday, April 20, 2009

My New Computer Is Fast and Other Stories

* My new computer is fast. "If you want, you can have more speed put in, but you won't need it," they told me at the store. I told them, "I want it. I need it." Now I can really tool around. Vroom, vrroom, vroom, vroom, vroom!

* I once made up w/ a boy I'd got in a fistfight with, a linebacker on the high school football team, by taking him out for a ride in my father's sports car, which was a vintage Triumph Spitfire. It wasn't very powerful, but it looked pretty good, and it was a convertible. I tooled around upscale residential streets with this guy in the passenger seat, and because I was going too fast and didn't know these streets well, I spun out and hit nothing. I can't remember what we said as we sat there crossways in the street. "Woh!" I imagine we said.

* He provoked the fistfight by coming up to me in the stands at a basketball game and spitting on me. So I had to go fight him, outside. All these people followed us out there. I thought I was getting my ass kicked because my nose was bleeding all over both of us, but in the vice principal's office the following Monday a.m, I saw that I'd blackened his eye pretty good.

* He did that -- spit on me -- because I was, according to him, messing around with his girlfriend, who was a good friend of mine. I told him that he had that all wrong, that we were just friends. But I lied. I was messing around with his girlfriend.

* I played high school football myself only one year, freshman year. I was a guard. Sometimes I got in on defense too, and one of these times I intercepted a pass. I was just standing there, not knowing what the fuck was going on, and the ball fell into my hands. Interception. I ran a few yards and got pounced on. Later, down the street from where the high school was, I got the high score on Asteroids and put in my initials. SAG.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Live and Free: FRiGG All-Microfiction Issue

Includes my eight-set, w/ some of my own recent faves -- the Green Lantern one, "Glass Horse," and three Gymnopédies, "L.A.," "Wichita," and "Albuquerque" (the second, third and fourth to be published, after "Seattle" in SmokeLong).

A fantastic line-up overall. Sets by Randall Brown, Kim Chinquee, Lydia Copeland, Kathy Fish, Barry Graham, Tiff Holland, Mary Miller, Kim Parko, Jennifer Pieroni, Meg Pokrass, and Joseph Young.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Preorderable: QF #15

My story in this one is called "Sofa." It's one of the only things I wrote when we were staying in a cabin on the Greenbrier River last summer. If I'm lucky, the reactions it'll get will be as good as the reactions my little grammar exercise-cum-story got in one of my classes today. These are verbatim:

"What the hell's wrong with you?"

"This is weird."

"I'm going to have nightmares."

Here's the full list of lovelies:

Jami Brandli
Andrew Brininstool
Randall Brown
Kenneth Calhoun
Elizabeth Ellen
Scott Garson
Lydia Copeland
Stefan Kiesbye
Andrea Kneeland
Charles Lennox
Sean Lovelace
Jen Marquardt
Lee Martin
Michael Meyerhofer
Taylur Thu Hien Ngo
Dylan Nice
G. C. Perry
Andrew Michael Roberts
Helen Klein Ross
Joanna Ruocco
James Scott
Don Strange
Jensen Whelan
Daniel E. Wickett
Blythe Winslow
Spencer Wise
Mike Young
Mabel Yu

I blow all of you kisses on faith....

Monday, April 13, 2009

Good Mail Day

The middle one is maybe the only one that needs explanation. It's a 1928 woodcut by Frans Masereel. Got it on ebay for pretty cheap. The walls are looking empty, you know....

Saturday, April 11, 2009

April @ Wigleaf...

is only the cruelest month if for some reason you don't like GOOD STUFFFFFFF.

Gary Moshimer's "Birds" is the latest. Read the story. Read the story. Read it. Read it.

"Make the pasta. Make the pasta. Make it. Make it."

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Hobart Baseball

Lots of good-looking stuff in the annual baseball update over @ Hobart. Jim Ruland, Adam Robinson, Simon Smith, Paul Silverman, others.

I've got a haiku in this year's batch. It's called "Storm Clouds."

How much of a teaser can I give for a haiku? Maybe one syllable. The first syllable is 'thun'.

Extra Extra

Kevin Wilson's "Tunneling to the Center of the Earth," from Ecco, has just been released. This is for me an event. Every once in a while a book of stories comes out that will seem, during the reading, just too good to finish. I close the book, hold the spine in one hand and feel happy about what's left to read. I've read enough of "Tunneling" elsewhere to know that it's going to be just that kind of book.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

I Guess This Is iTunes' April Fools Joke

Their current free 'Discovery' download: the first movement of John Cage's 4'33'. "Listen carefully," they tell people.