The editors of the beautiful hand-sewn print artifact ETHEL have just posted their current issue online as well. Excited to see my lyric piece “Vivienne’s Key” listed as poetry rather than prose! Thank you Joanna Penn Cooper and Sara Ethel Lefsyk for including my micro in such a gorgeous magazine.
I was pleased when Karen Schauber emailed me to ask whether they could reprint "Zig Zag" at MIRAMICHI FLASH. It's been a while, so I'd forgotten. It's out today, with really nice art from the Canadian artist Patricia Sandberg.
So Mythic Picnic does this recurrent contest on Twitter for his "Twitterary" magazine, and my tiny micro "New Shoes" (originally published in 50WS: Fifty Word Stories) tied for third place. There's a $100 prize. Nice start to my day. Mark Finnenore (Mythic Picnic) is local and I met him at an outdoor Bay Area event a couple of years ago.
This morning Mythic Picnic announced the first prize winner (a video), second (Barlow Adams, whose work I've long admired), and two third prizes. Now they've announced a bunch more (including a number of twitter friends: Sudha Balagopal (whose novella-in-flash I just blurbed), Chelsea Stickle, Chelsea Voulgares, Cathy Ulrich, Cheryl Pappas, Robert James Russell, Travis Cravey, Amy Barnes, Audra Kerr Brown, and some others that I follow on Twitter but am less familiar with. We'll be in Mythic Picnic's seventh online "Twitterary" magazine with this cover by Luana (@i_mthestorm).
Nervous about the future commitments I'm juggling: my ongoing editorial duties at CRAFT (always interesting), my upcoming duties on the judging panel for the chapbook contest at BLACK LAWRENCE PRESS in June and August (also interesting, also time-consuming), and now teaching.
CRAFT is part of a consortium of profit-making literary magazines with relatively new corporate owners. They make a lot of money from contests, and now want to move into teaching, so we're looking at models at other magazines. Many, many, are doing that now. We just talked about it at our last Zoom editorial meeting, and I've just gotten an invitation from Robert Vaughan at BENDING GENRES to teach one of their weekend workshops. I've committed myself to September, I have no idea what I'll do (flash CNF maybe? of what sort?) and I'm nervous about it but also interested. Long ago I thought I might teach in the Scholar OLLI program for continuing ed at Cal State. This will be much more interesting and will undoubtedly attract much more interesting students. Up to 20, which is a lot since I'll be doing three days of thorough written critiques of their work. I wonder how much they write in two days?
Just finishing up my ten days In Kathy Fish's Fast Flash Workshop, and I've written ten flash and I like all of them! Her critiques are lengthy and insightful, but positive feedback only and I like that as a pedagogical principle, since I have an extremely critical writing group in San Francisco that will set me straight later.
I'm really touched by all the attention that my lyric essay "Haunting Houses" has gotten, on twitter, facebook, and the two essay sites where I posted it. I loved publishing it in NEW OHIO REVIEW, which is a beautiful print magazine, but there's no doubt that online publication reaches more readers. I'm pleased they decided to post their back issues.
Now for something that couldn't be more different.
“Anyone who believes they’ve got a superpower is delusional, am I right? How’d you like me to levitate right now?” I became fond of my fictional character “Super Stanley” in my tiny new micro in NUNUM, despite our brief acquaintanceship. The Canadian zine NUNUM is a short flip book in sort of crazy order (yes my bio comes way before “Super Stanley”) with great art. A fun treat for spring.
First five days of Kathy Fish's Fast Flash class have yielded five flash and really I like most of them enough to consider revising them further. It's a new process for me, to write quickly, post without worrying about perfecting what I've written, and wait to revise later. I've never believed in Anne Lamott's idea of just getting a "shitty first draft" on the page (or rather I never believed it fit the way I write), but this week, it's working. It is, of course, strange to get only positive feedback (Kathy Fish's pedagogical principle), but that's freeing in a generative workshop where you want to try new things without the burden of criticism (or self-criticism).
Five of my six Notable Essays in BEST AMERICAN ESSAYS are only available in print, so I'm particularly pleased that one of them is now available online. NOR: NEW OHIO REVIEW is going through their back issues and posting the content online. "Haunting Houses" is now up, along with the twenty-minute recording I did of the essay.
And tomorrow I start a two-week generative Fast Flash class with Kathy Fish. I'm already nervous: will I be able to write every day, or will inspiration fail me?