I’ve got a new, tiny story called “Punnett Squares” in Passages North 37. The issue features work from Thalia Field, Carole Maso, and many other wonderful people. It’s about birth, shitty reggae bands, and cowardice. It’s also part of a series called MILK TEETH. Other stories in the series can be found in Alice Blue Review, Squalorly, The EEEEL, Cheap Pop, The Fanzine, DREGINALD, and Banango Street. Thanks so much to editors Robin McCarthy and Matt Weinkam for including the piece and their work on the issue.
A new, very short story “We Are Fine” is in issue 4 of No Tokens, a literary magazine based in NYC. The issue features work by Noy Holland, Meredith Alling, and Lindsay Hunter, whose book Don’t Kiss Me I highly recommend. You can purchase the issue here. Massive thanks to the editors at No Tokens — it’s an honor to be included.
“Hospital Variations” is up this week at Okey-Panky. The site started up earlier this year and has had a great run so far. They’ve featured work from MariNaomi, Molly Laich, a fantastic story about telephone service codes by Joseph Aguilar, and many others. You can read a short interview in which J. Robert Lennon and I talk about music, fiction vs. prose poems, and filing off sharp points. Also, there’s a recording of me reading the piece here, in case you wanted to hear what I sound like beneath a quilt in a hot, nearly empty apartment bedroom. Enjoy.
The new issue of Blue Earth Review is now available. It includes my story “Palici,” as well as great writing by Mike Meginnis, Mercedes Lawry, Dante Di Stefano, and others. The issue also contains many wonderful paintings by Leslie Barlow. Seriously, Leslie Barlow. Check her out, she’s doing great work.
“Hats” is in the new issue of Banango Street. It’s a short story about two brothers with a hat collection. It does not end well. The issue contains poems by Mike Young and Eunsong Kim, fiction by Erin Armstrong, a powerful, affecting essay by Joshua R. Helms, and many others. I’m pleased to be in such good company.
The story is part of a series called MILK TEETH. Other stories in the series can be found in Alice Blue Review, Squalorly, The EEEEL, Cheap Pop, The Fanzine, and DREGINALD, and are forthcoming in Passages North.
“OO:OO,” “Leash,” and “Tape,” are in issue six of DREGINALD. It includes great work from Tim Jones-Yelvington, Emily Hunt, Camilo Roldán, and many others. Thanks to editors Lily Duffy and Rachel Levy for including the stories. Rachel has a book coming out in June from Caketrain called A Book So Red, and you can check out a preview and preorder it here. The pieces in DREGINALD are from a series called MILK TEETH. Previous installments can be found here, here, here, here, and here. More stories in the series are forthcoming from Passages North and Banango Street.
“Prague” is up today at Wyvern Lit. Issue Four contains some great work from Joel Hans, Christopher DiCicco, and a stunning story called “Copse” by Rachel Richardson. Thanks to Brent Rydin for taking good care of the piece, as well as Lauren VanDenBerg for making sure I didn’t embarrass myself writing about a city I’d never been to.
“Swans” is up today at Squalorly. Thanks to fiction editor Pete Stevens for taking the piece. “Swans” is part of a series called MILK TEETH. Previous installments can be found here, here, and here. You can read another story from the gold man’s POV here. New stories in the series are forthcoming in Banango Street and Passages North. Holla.
Anchor Points is up at theNewerYork. It’s a short story about a sadistic dentist, and it’s part of a series of stories called MILK TEETH. It’s inspiration came partly from googling the phrase “fish with human teeth,” which you absolutely should not do. Previous stories in MILK TEETH can be found here, here, and here.
Lake of Earth is nearly a year old. As a way to mark that, I thought I’d list some things I’ve learned over the past few years. Some of this might seem painfully basic, but they’re lessons that’ve taken me a while to get right.
1. Do the Work
I had a professor in undergrad, Rebecca Gorman-O’Neill, who told us that “writers write.” This seems like obvious advice, but I didn’t do a great job of it after graduation. From 2008-2010, I wrote very little. I’d chip away at existing stories once or twice a month or write first drafts I never returned to. I almost never submitted work. I’m not sure what I was waiting for. I told myself that I was collecting ideas, that I only wanted to write when I was “inspired.” Those reasons were bullshit. I just didn’t want to do the work. While I discovered a lot of great authors in that time (Gary Lutz, Blake Butler, and Aimee Bender to name a few), I had zero disciple, so I never got finished anything.
In early 2011, I started writing on a schedule and sending out work. Later on in the year, the work started getting published. I also began writing in a journal about what I was reading, and that kind of close analysis helped my stories. In this article about Maria Bamford, her mantra is reportedly “Do the work.” It’s good advice for all realms of life. If you want to do something well, you’re going to have to put in the hours.