Lots of wonderful magazines came out with new issues today, including GONE LAWN, with its stellar Summer Solstice issue. Thrilled to be in GONE LAWN with such great company. My microflash “Ready or Not” is the last of my pandemic publications, written late last summer. Big thanks to editors Owen Kaelan and Maura Yzmore.
GONE LAWN is another magazine I've admired for a long time. Of course all my publications are coming out at once this week. The NFFD 2021 anthology launch is on Saturday (live in the UK, but not exactly live, since they're releasing Youtube videos).
Love Dorothea Tanning’s paintings, particularly her surreal “Portrait de famille,” the subject of my ekphrastic microfiction “Head of the Household.” So excited to publish "Head of the Household" in COTTON XENOMORPH, a magazine I’ve admired forever, and that has published lots of my favorite writers. Big thanks to editors Chloe N. Clark, Teo Mungaray, and Hannah Cohen. I hadn't noticed how appropriate this was for Father's Day until they pointed it out!
And I hadn't noticed that Jill Talbot also referenced a Dorothea Tanning painting in her essay in THE RUPTURE this week until she pointed it out in her response to mine. That painting ("Eine Kleine Nachtmusik") is really cool too, and I love Jill's essay.
Back when I was 17, my high school art teacher thought I might major art and not in English. Literature was always my first love (though it took me a long time to dare to move from literary scholarship to creative writing), but I'm still inspired by art. A wonderful prompt from Kathy Fish today on fragmented mosaic flash has me thinking about art museums and how I can't wait until they reopen and also how much I've written about art in the past year or so. I did some ekphrastic micros about Munch, and more recently these.
my lyric essay "Octopus Dreams" in Rapahannock Review (where I talk about Magritte, Chagall, and Joseph Cornell)
my forthcoming flash on Dorothy Tanning in Cotton Xenomorph
my forthcoming flash sequence on Munch and Picasso in Tiny Molecules
my flash fiction set in the Magritte exhibit, "The Lost Umbrella" in Pithead Chapel (sort of recent)
my new lyric essay on Joseph Cornell (not even sending out yet)
We have tickets for the Immersive Van Gogh exhibit in July, which looks like it might be overwhelming but definitely interesting.
The past week has brought some unwelcome rejections (are rejections ever welcome?) of two flash I wrote in the Kathy Fish Fast Flash class, so I was particularly happy to wake up to an acceptance of my segmented flash "Still Lives" from TINY MOLECULES this morning. "Still Lives" started when I saw the Edvard Munch exhibit at SFMOMA (several years ago?) as a possible chapbook idea: a series of ekphrastic flash on artists and models. I decided to get rid of a lot of accumulated research and distill it down to a flash about two artists (Munch, Picasso) and two writers (Poe, Browning).
Connor Harrison solicited me for TINY MOLECULES' new feature "Observations" after three of my Lunatics flash were published in their fiction section. "Observations" calls for "explorations of, and responses to, art [and] reading," among other things, and seemed like a good fit. Their examples are intriguing: Anne Carson's Plainwater, Gertrude Stein's Food, John Berger's and our faces, my heart, brief as photos." It was the only place I sent "Still Lives." Publication should always be this painless and easy.
I was pleased to see that TINY MOLECULES has a former contributor in the Wigleaf Top 50, and twelve former contributors on the Wigleaf longlist. A nice magazine!
I'm sort of thrown off my stride with the other two flash. One was rejected by someone I consider a (virtual) friend. I even blurbed her book. So I feel like it must be nowhere near as good as I thought, and I don't want to send it to another editor I consider a (virtual) friend, whose championing of "Nola" led to THE MISSING GIRL. Not sure where to send them. The literary world shrinks rather than expanding as I know more editors.
Of course I know from CRAFT that many of the flash we reject end up in very good magazines, and many factors go into a rejection. Doesn't lessen the blow, really.
And I miscalculated by sending my lyric essay on rereading Italo Calvino to a place that doesn't accept simultaneous submissions. They just wrote to me that they won't make a decision until July (I sent it in mid-April, and never imagined it would take this long). In the meantime I discovered several good magazines that are specifically looking for lyric essays. Oh well. I have more than one. We'll be talking about my lyric essay on Joseph Cornell in my writing group tomorrow night. I'm thinking about expanding a short philosophical riff that just got two rejections into a short lyric essay as well.
THE SAN FRANCISCAN arrived, with my long profile, and great flash by Kara Vernor, Thaisa Frank, Robert Scotellaro, Lynn Mundell, a short story by Ethel Rohan, and wonderful art. Surprised that the excerpt from my flash "The Missing Girl" sort of stands alone.
They sometimes post things online after their issues have been out for a while (this is their fourth), so I hope it will be online later. The photo I posted on Facebook is actually legible. I think this isn't.
Also we went to our first in-person literary event in over a year: a book launch for Sandra Wassile in Jon Sindell's flower-filled back yard in the Outer Sunset. It was a small gathering (everyone vaccinated, no masks). Saw some writer friends I didn't expect to, met some writers I didn't know, heard some good poetry and music.
Sudha Balagopal asked me to contribute to an article she was writing on "How Flash Fiction Improves Your Writing" for the Chicago Writers Association blog. It's wonderfully succinct and informative, with contributions from Grant Faulkner, me, Kim Magowan, Tommy Dean, Cheryl Pappas, and Francine Witte.
I just read proofs for my cnf pandemic flash "Ready or Not" for the upcoming GONE LAWN and I'm pleased with it. Even though it's very much a product of my feelings last summer, it doesn't feel dated to me. It will be a couple of weeks before it comes out. LEGERDEMAIN, the flash fiction day anthology, comes out later that week as well. Still waiting for SONORA REVIEW. And THE SAN FRANCISCAN, where Jayne Martin did a profile of me. They may both be in the mail. Or not.