May/June 2011

May/June 2011 cover

A special section on writing contests, including a roundtable with the people who run them and a survey of the writers who win them; profiles of novelists Siri Hustvedt and Tayari Jones; social media for authors, and more.

Buy This Issue

Features

Memory and Ms. Hyde: A Profile of Siri Hustvedt

by Kevin Nance
Print Only

In her fifth novel, The Summer Without Men, Siri Hustvedt draws on her fascination with memory and all things cerebral to spin a twisted tale of love an marriage.

She Is Ready: A Profile of Tayari Jones

by Rochelle Spencer
Print Only

With the publication of her third novel, Silver Sparrow, Tayari Jones presents an intriguing paradox: a serious literary author who wants her readers to have fun.

Special Section

Writing Contests

by Kevin Larimer
Print Only

In this special section on writing contests: Four prize administrators offer a behind-the-scenes look at how their contests are run; an analysis of the 129 writers who won book publication prizes last year; plus ten tips for successful entries.

News and Trends

Arts Crunch in Kansas

by Kevin Nance

Arts supporters in Kansas succeeded in their efforts to reverse Governor Sam Brownback’s decision to replace the Kansas Arts Commission with a private foundation.

Page One: Where New and Noteworthy Books Begin

by Staff

With so many good books being published every month, some literary titles worth exploring can get lost in the stacks. Page One offers the first lines of a dozen recently released books, including Tracey K. Smith's Life on Mars and Chika Unigwe's On Black Sisters Street, as the starting point for a closer look at these new and noteworthy titles.

A New Bread Loaf Rises in Italy

by Jennifer De Leon

This September Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference will expand its workshop from the historic Bread Loaf Inn in Middlebury, Vermont, to the Italian island of Sicily, with a condensed program of classes in poetry, fiction, and creative nonfiction.

3 for Free

by Staff

In this regular feature, we offer a few suggestions for podcasts, smartphone apps, Web tools, newsletters, museum shows, and gallery openings: a medley of literary curiosities that you might enjoy.

Small Press Points

by Staff

Small Press Points highlights the happenings of the small press players. This issue features Ice Cube Press, the nineteen-year-old publisher based in Iowa City with a focus on the importance of place.

Allan_RGB_Open3.jpg

Q&A: Kornblum Takes a Coffee Break

by Catherine Richardson

As he prepares to step down from his role as publisher of Coffee House Press, founder Allan Kornblum speaks about responsible publishing, the future of the book, and returning to his roots.

The Written Image: Face to Face

by Staff

Two book paintings by Los Angeles artist Mike Stilkey, whose works will be on display in the exhibition Face to Face: The Changing Face of Portraiture at the William D. Cannon Art Gallery in Carlsbad, California.

The Practical Writer

The Dotted Line: Navigating Literary Magazine Contracts

by Laura Maylene Walter
Print Only

Before signing a publication contract with a literary journal, writers should consider the long-term implications of the agreement. One short story writer offers a rundown on industry standards.

Bullseye: How to Submit to Beloit Poetry Journal

by Staff
Print Only

The editors of the sixty-one-year-old Beloit Poetry Journal, which has published the early works of luminaries from Charles Bukowski to Anne Sexton, are looking for poems that pass the “so what” test.

First: Charles McLeod's American Weather

by Eleanor Henderson
Print Only

For debut fiction writer Charles McLeod, the path to publication led across the pond, to Random House UK.

The Literary Life

Spilling Blood: The Art of Writing Violence

by Benjamin Percy and Aaron Gwyn
Print Only

While explicit cruelty has its place in literature, violence may be more cunningly crafted by allowing the reader to wander into the dark corners of his own mind.

After-Hours Author: The Working Writer's Advantage

by Michael Klein
Print Only

A writer employed outside traditional literary channels makes the case for the working-writing split.

After-Hours Author: The Working Writer's Advantage

by Michael Klein
Print Only

Is a writer employed outside of the literary realm any less of an artist? One writer makes the case for the nine-to-five juggling act.

Spilling Blood: The Art of Writing Violence

by Benjamin Percy and Aaron Gwyn
Print Only

While explicit violence has its place in literature, Benjamin Percy and Aaron Gwyn explain how scenes of brutality may be more cunningly crafted by allowing the reader to wander into the dark corners of his own mind.

Why We Write: The Word in the World

by Joyce Thomas
Print Only

After personal tragedy shakes one writer's life out of focus, the written word helps her reshape the world and, ultimately, find joy.

Classifieds