The Future Is Cold: Excerpt from Self’s “Ice”

A journal accepted this piece two years ago.

It still hasn’t seen print.

In the meantime, self has been working on it, adding a sentence here, a paragraph there.

Here’a an excerpt.

It was true the boy’s eyes were strange, as if icecaps were growing in the irises. He tried to staunch the spread, but hour by hour the ice seemed to grow. Until, he hated to say it, the boy had gone completely blind. But he still pretended to watch the sky.

Halloooo came the cry across the frozen wasteland.

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Lake Louise, Alberta, Canada: April 2015

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

#amreading: Iowa Review, Spring 2015

Excerpt from “Turtle”

by M. E. Hope

Seaman Recruit Robinson was a petite black woman
always smiling, though few met her eyes.
On first look you saw the scar, her entire
face was burn — a healed swirl of pink
and brown, a nose less nose than placeholder
for the center of her face. But her eyes
and smile — those calmed every one
of us. And she did know us all, knew
names and with every small conversation
remembered our stories.

Quote of the Day: Aimee Nezhukumatathil (The Writer’s Chronicle, Sept 2016)

“I do think persona is helpful in however heavy or light the disguise, if only to announce to the reader that if my persona says or does something they don’t find agreeable, it’s just a character, not the person.”

— Aimee Nezhukumatathil, in her interview with Eric Farwell, The Writer’s Chronicle, September 2016

#amreading: All Day, Poetry

The Sublime

by Joshua Gottlieb-Miller

(An excerpt)

He was worried he was growing
immune to his anxiety
medication when the bank called
to tell him his identity

had been stolen. He did some
quick calculations, then
They can keep it, he said,
and hung up. The sublime

is kindled by the threat
of nothing further happening,
the painter wrote, and he liked that
so he thought about it as he walked

into the woods. Creditors
from other branches of the bank
called to ask when he would put
more money in his checking account.

He was delinquent, they explained,
so he explained it was only
the account that was delinquent.
Not after Zen, not after quiet

determination, or equilibrium —
just a view from the overlook,
and to enjoy it, the forest being new
to him. He keeps going. Leaves

— published in Indiana Review, Vol. 34, No. 2

Joshua Gottlieb-Miller holds an MFA in poetry from the University of Houston, where he was a poetry editor for Gulf Coast.

Phoebe Journal: Annual Spring Contest

Contest Deadline:  March 19, 2017

Prize:  $400 and publication in Phoebe 46.2 (online issue)

Entry Fee:  $9

Poetry submission: 3 to 5 poems per submission, up to a maximum of 10 pages

Prose submission: 1 piece per submission, maximum 5,000 words

Here’s the link to their submission page.

Fiction Judge is Patricia Park.

Poetry Judge is Monica Youn.

Nonfiction Judge is Elena Passarello.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

Reading at AWP (Off-Site) for QUARTERLY WEST, 8 February 2017

Participating in a group reading for Quarterly West at Sixth Engine, a converted firehouse in Washington, DC. during the AWP Conference.

Date: 8 February 2017 (Details to follow), downtown Washington DC

Quarterly West Issue # 89 has self’s newest Dragon/Fire Lizard story, “First Causes.”

It’s a sequel to her “First Life,” published July 2015 in Juked.com

Stay tuned.

 

“Magellan’s Mirror”: Self’s Pushcart-Nominated Story, 2012

Magellan’s Mirror

  • Note: In this story, The Philippines is the home of giants. In the history books, Ferdinand Magellan is credited with their discovery.

During the next week, no natives appeared on the shore. The beach was empty as it had been on the first day, before the crew had sighted Enrique. The men looked up at the sky, cloudless and blue. Under their breaths, they cursed their leader.

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The Beach at Capitola-by-the-Sea, late December 2016

In the middle of the third week, four of the giants were seen gesticulating on the shore. The sailors shook their heads. The natives importuned them with tragic gestures. Finally, the tribesmen boarded a massive canoe and began paddling towards the Trinidad. Magellan ordered his men to welcome them warmly. The crew offered the visitors their fill of wine. Just as the giants were sleepily dozing off, Magellan had his men shackle them.


Thanks to J Journal for nominating self’s story for the Pushcart. Self took the historical journey of Ferdinand Magellan and included magical elements. She has a Part II, called “Vanquisher.” And a third story, called “Residents of the Deep,” which she began at the Tyrone Guthrie Centre in Annaghmakerrig, 2014, which takes place centuries later (1840s)

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

Self’s Accident Story, “Dust”

It was sunny, a glorious day. April was sometimes cold but Jocelyn thought she could sense summer coming, around the corner.

The girl who clipped them, that afternoon in April, was just 18. Driving her red Ford mustang at a speed that was just short of criminal, she’d gotten her driver’s license only that month.

The Ford Explorer rolled over and over and over. For almost two years, she saw the image flash into her mind, often just before she lay her head down to sleep. Then she had to get up and pace the bedroom, or take two Ambien if there was something important to do the next day.

By the time the vehicle came to rest, by the center divider on the southbound 101, her son was dead. It had happened quickly. Jocelyn was glad.

“First Causes” in Quarterly West

  • Big starts walking towards me. His voice drops. “Now, now, now, now. Is this payback? For what I did to Her? Her was a stray. Made me look like a clump. You another. Know what I do to strays? You stupid, fucking Fog Brain! I’ll rip you in half!”

“First Causes” in Quarterly West, Issue 89

This has got to be the strangest science fiction ever.

Morgan was right: self’s language sounds like it would be right at home in a North Dublin chip shop. But this is the future. In the last human colony on Earth.

A group of Quarterly West contributors, self included, will be reading in DC, Feb. 8, at Sixth Engine (Firehouse & Bar), 438 Massachusetts Ave., NW.

The companion piece to “First Causes” is “First Life.” Read it on Juked.com.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

Reflective Monday

From Richard Schnap’s poem, “As The Road Narrows,” in the 13 December 2016 issue of the Eunoia Review:

We attach meaning
To many things
That have no meaning

Read the rest of the poem here.

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The Beach at Capitola

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

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