Monday May 27

RobertClarkYoung3 This month I’m enjoying four wonderful and strong pieces of writing that are wonderful and strong in different ways, and I’m very pleased to present them to you here.

“Abbeyleix Affair,” by Macy French, is a fabulous and promising vignette, just a taste of what this promising young writer is capable of doing. She works in multiple genres—fiction, nonfiction, and theater are just three that I’m aware of—and I have no doubt that we’ll be hearing much more from her in literary journals and in longer formats in the years to come.

“On Bridges, Beaches, and Britney Spears,” by Jennifer Schomburg Kanke, is a magnificent and vigorous look at a series of varied disturbances. It brings a complex structure that reflects its complex takes on a number of realities that may seem, at first encounter, to be rather facile—but this would be a deception, as Kanke’s multilayered technique quickly makes evident.

“Mark Twain. Before and After,” by Tatiana Pozdnyakova, is a marvelous and fanciful excursion into the mind of an author who’s been off the scene—at least physically—for a little more than a century. One of the apparent ways to do this piece would have been to try to approximate Twain’s style—which varied considerably throughout his writing life—or try to aim for the epistolary Twain. Pozdnyakova does something far better, I think, by creating a kind of invisible modern voice that allows her Twain to come through with an authenticity of character.

“Erasing the Paint,” by Robert Joe Stout is another in his series of admirable and empathetic explorations of the political situation in southern Mexico. He opens with his theme, which is one of desperate significance: “International agreements are political: Human rights are personal. Political agreements throughout the world are arbitrarily enforced. Or circumvented because of ‘unforeseen circumstances.’”

I f you are a writer perhaps in some way like these, one who has composed a work of nonfiction that is wonderful and strong, I would love to read it. I invite you to submit nonfiction on a topic of your choice.  I’m looking for creative nonfiction, narrative nonfiction, memoirs, and personal essays—with the understanding that these categories often overlap—up to 10,000 words.  Please submit work directly to me at [email protected].  I look forward to enjoying your work!