Rogue critic GLB Pym is up to his old tricks, and this time he's starting a movement. I managed to convey his manifesto to the editors at FLAPPERHOUSE, where it appears in Issue #13, out today. Ever the tireless (yet pedantic) crusader for forgotten vanguards, Pym will convert you to the cause of Italian Futurist Ennio Alata, in this his "Manifesto for Alata, Transcinematist; or Winged Imagination." Available in print or digital, tossed into this latest iteration of FLAPPERHOUSE's standard literary brew: one part surreal, one part shadowy, one part outré, and a heaping dose of provocation.
My review of Catalan modernist Mercè Rodoreda's War, So Much War was selected for publication in the summer issue of The Puritan. The novel, which I call "literary quicksilver" for its defiance of conventional literary forms, was published only three years before the prolific writer's death in 1983 and now appears, courtesy of Open Letter Books, in a "hypnotic" and "incandescent" English translation by Maruxa Relaño and Martha Tennent. Tensely psychological, Rodoreda's deft manipulation of voice serves as a perfect vehicle of expression for the novel's existential themes, foregrounded in this nameless, place-less war which suggests an interior, rather than a geographical, landscape. Yet despite the vague setting, Rodoreda devotees will recognize the author's recurrent pastoral imagery, simultaneously violent and bucolic, and her provocative stream-of-conscious narration peopled with fascinating characters. Explore the enigmatic territory of the self with my review of a welcome addition to the Rodoreda corpus in English.
My essay "Portrait of a Pink Lady: Booth Tarkington and the Changing Face of America" examines writer Booth Tarkington's 1918 Pulitzer-winning novel, The Magnificent Ambersons, through the author's personal collection of portrait paintings, some of which are now on display at the Indianapolis Museum of Art's exhibition "A Gentleman Collector: Portraits from the Collection of Booth Tarkington." Using the enigma of a particular painting, Portia in a Pink Blouse, as a jumping-off point, I reflect on the novel's provocative facial imagery: How do the paintings in Tarkington's collection elucidate the themes in his writing but also paint a beguiling portrait of the author himself, "struggling to make sense of the changing face of America?" Read more of my thoughts on The Mookse and the Gripes.
My translation "Navarin," from contemporary French poet, translator and award-winning short-story writer Magali Duru, appears in The Cossack Review's Fall 2015 issue, now available in print and .pdf formats. An engrossing tale spanning three generations, "Navarin" unearths a family secret from the darkest depths of French history. It is a secret which can only be unlocked by the most surprising of keys: the Alexandrine couplet.
The Summer 2015 issue of MAYDAY Magazine is now live and includes my translation of Artur Azevedo's story, "Top-Down." Brisk, yet comical, this piece from Brazil's master of the comedy of manners comes alive by satirizing those power structures which prop up societies of every age. "Top-Down" appears in the company of award-winning fiction and poetry, as well as globe-spanning translations and reviews, all packed into this visually appealing, much-anticipated issue from New American Press.
The latest issue of Schoolcraft College's long-running magazine The MacGuffin is now available, featuring the winners of the 19th annual National Poet Hunt with commentary. I am thrilled to have my short story "Patron Saint of Flappers" included among such talent. A limited number of issues are available for online ordering via the NewPages website, while mail orders of single issues or full subscriptions are accepted directly through Schoolcraft College. An eclectic mix of styles and voices, illuminated with beautiful photos and prints, this issue proves once more Schoolcraft's devotion to the literary and fine arts.
FLAPPERHOUSE, home to my story "Introduction: A Moor in the Onyx Ash Grove" (#4), has just released print versions of all four year-one issues, as well as a Year-One anthology, brimming with all the wildly imaginative fiction and poetry readers have come to expect from this innovative journal. I am proud to see my work in such a beautiful edition, and even more thrilled to know my story has played a small role in setting the aesthetic tone for this journal, as it continues "dragging the future back through the past."
I managed to get my hands on an advance copy of famed (yet notoriously prickly) critic GLB Pym's latest piece of literary scholarship, and it appears in the Winter 2015 issue of FLAPPERHOUSE, out today. Here Pym introduces us to the life and work of eccentric poet, writer and translator, Sylvain Dubois - while settling a few scores along the way. The piece appears in impressive company, surrounded by wildly provocative, utterly beguiling, fiction and poetry.
I am honored that Asymptote selected one of my translations to appear on their blog's weekly "Translation Tuesday" feature. The piece is titled "The Stops," from fin-de-siècle Brazilian writer Artur Azevedo's "As Paradas." Author, dramatist and translator, Azevedo, a specialist in the comedy of manners, here gives us a story that, although brief, packs an emotional punch: Endearing and humorous, "The Stops" affords us a fascinating glimpse into the daily life of turn-of-the-twentieth-century Brazil.
Publication announcements, bookish items of note and the occasional literary musing.