Congratulations to Jenny Zhang, Christopher DeWeese, and Rebecca Farivar for having their manuscripts selected for publication by Octopus Books 2011.
Congratulations also to finalists: Claire Donato, Julie Doxsee, Laura Eve Engel, Sasha Fletcher, Dan Hoy, Brenda Iijima, George Kalamaras, Kirsten Kaschock, Seth Landman, Linnea Ogden, Alexandria Peary, Craig Rebele, Rob Schlegel, S. E. Smith, and Melinda Wilson.
And in other Octopus news. . . .
#14 is live and features the following sixteen long poems:
The Water’s Piety in Doubt and Question by J. Michael Martinez
It is Especially Dangerous To Be Conscious of Oneself by Jeff Alessandrelli
Dwell-E by Brandon Downing
The Massachusetts Book of the Dead by Katie Peterson
Coney Island Avenue by Andy Fitch
Length of Fetch by Jesse Lichtenstein
A Geography of Pleasure by Amy King
Descend, Descend by Samuel Amadon
Vertigo and Bone Room by Julie Doxsee
from Rosalia by Molly Gaudry
The Kingdom of Blizzards by Michael Rerick
The Erotic Life of Art: A Seance with William Carlos Williams by Eileen R. Tabios
Topic Sentences by Dot Devota
We Know in 2010, We Survive by Claire Becker
The Personal History of Wind by Jennifer Denrow
Dark Highway by Zvonko Karanović transl. by Ana Božičević.
And the following reviews:
Not Blessed by Harold Abramowitz, reviewed by Janice Lee
Under the Quick by Molly Bendall, reviewed by Suzette Bishop
Sum of Every Lost Ship by Allison Titus, reviewed by David Carillo
Mr. Worthington’s Beautiful Experiments on Splashes, reviewed by Sommer Browning
With When All Our Days Are Numbered Marching Bands Will Fill the Streets & We Will Not Hear Them Because We Will Be Upstairs in the Clouds (Mud Luscious Press, 2010) Sasha Fletcher has distinguished himself as a writer of great imagination, a careful craftsman of sentences, one attentive to tone and rhythm, to the visual dynamics of the page, to a profluence not beholden to the unbreakable chain of this-follows-that, a profluence sensitive to the reader’s inherent capacity to fill in the mortar between the bricks of text. The novella’s unnamed narrator, a bemused creator who, traveling to and from a kind of dreamland, performs many magical acts like walking into telephone lines and out of phones, like “building” a garden, steamboat, window, river, meadow, fridge, table, stove, sink, and even a well on the roof. At one point, he even tries “so hard to make lightning come spilling out of the clouds.” And that “so” is one signal of the narrator’s earnestness. If there is any single theme to Fletcher’s novella it is acceptance, not a bored resignation but a surrendering to life’s absurdity, its whimsy, even its flimsiness. The narrator, after disbelieving that his “stories are getting sadder & sadder every day”, asserts: “There are lots of things on this earth not worth questioning.” And toward the end of the novella says, “There are some things we know & there are some things we don’t & for everything else just close your eyes and go to sleep. Tomorrow is another day.”
Sure, I understand summer is when kids and teachers have months-worth of vacation time. When people of means take trips to Hawaii or something. But for most of us, summer just means it’s better weather out while we’re inside working. So, by all means, make summer reading lists. But why not just make reading lists. Period. ?
To that end, here’s a list for you:
Books to Read During Your Lunch Break While at Work this Summer
BOOK by Ken Sparling
The Awful Possibilities by Christian TeBordo
Pee On Water by Rachel Glaser
When All Our Days Are Numbered by Sasha Fletcher
The Journey of Ibn Fattoum by Naquib Mahfouz
The Old Man and the Sea by Ernest Hemingway
Siddhartha by Herman Hesse
Q Road by Bonnie Jo Campbell
As Cool As I Am by Pete Fromm
All of these are quite digestable in a few lunch hours (or half-hours). Besides, who needs to eat.
Sasha Fletcher’s installment of the MLP Novel(la) series is up for pre-order. There’s a funny thing going on with the pre-order. You can help Fletcher get drunk on fancy beers. Everyone deserves a fancy drunk now and then. I’m about to go pre-order my copy. READ THIS.
Then go PREORDER.
Mel Bosworth reads an excerpt from Sasha Fletcher’s forthcoming novella WHEN ALL OUR DAYS ARE NUMBERED MARCHING BANDS WILL FILL THE STREETS & WE WILL NOT HEAR THEM BECAUSE WE WILL BE UPSTAIRS IN THE CLOUDS.