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Current Issue


Supporting the Craft and Business of Excellent Writing
Volume 12, Number 4: May 2015
Editor: Erika Dreifus
Copyright (c) 2015 Erika Dreifus


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1. Editor’s Note: What’s New
2. Article/Lessons Learned
3. Featured Resource
4. Upcoming/Ongoing Contests, Competitions, and Other Opportunities
5. Submission Alerts!!!
6. Blog Notes
7. Newsletter Matters
Greetings, practicing writers!

A confession (though not for the first time): I am not the most tech-savvy person around.

Which is an introduction to an apology. I often have trouble managing upgrades, glitches, and other changes that come in our increasingly tech-dependent lives. So whether you’re encountering a garbled newsletter (as one – but ONLY ONE – of you reported last month) or wondering why the hyperlinks in this issue may appear slightly differently than they have in previous issues, I beg your indulgence. And I point you, again, to the version of the current issue that I make available on my website each month: http://www.erikadreifus.com/newsletter/current.

Thank you all for your patience and loyalty. It means a lot to me to provide this free service for the literary community; I’m sorry for any of its (or my) limitations or problems.

All best,

By Erika Dreifus

Last month saw me, like many of you, boarding a plane destined for Minneapolis, where the 2015 conference of the Association of Writers and Writing Programs (AWP) took place. My own trip was quick (I was in town about 42 hours), and I spent just one day at the famous Bookfair. But I managed to come home with a number of literary treasures I thought I’d list for you here.

They include:

–a (discounted) copy of Elissa Washuta’s MY BODY IS A BOOK OF RULES, which is also autographed because the author happened to be right there at the Red Hen Press table when I walked by.

–a (discounted) subscription to IMAGE, a journal I’ve been meaning to subscribe to forever. At least as meaningful: the chance to speak with editor Gregory Wolfe and share thoughts of our mutual friend, the late critic D.G. Myers.

–complimentary copies of the previous five issues of THE WRITER magazine, which I appreciated because (shh!) I’m not currently a subscriber.

–a complimentary copy of the March 16, 2015 “MFA Update” issue of PUBLISHERS WEEKLY, provided by Craig Morgan Teicher at the excellent session he moderated on “The Other Track: MFAs in the Book Business.”

–thanks to the generosity of M.E. Silverman, a complimentary copy of BLUE LYRA REVIEW: AN ANTHOLOGY OF DIVERSE VOICES.

–a copy of the remarkable Vol. 3, Issue 1, of TAB: THE JOURNAL OF POETRY & POETICS, literally put right in my hands by Editor-in-Chief Anna Leahy.

–a copy of HOME FOR AN HOUR, by Sarah Martin, Jacob Paul, and Adam Moser, gifted to me and signed by Jacob Paul, after I apologized for not bringing to Minneapolis my just-purchased copy of his new novel, A SONG OF ILAN, for him to autograph.

–and an inscribed copy of THE BOOK OF STONE, which author Jonathan Papernick generously offered to me (even though I told him that since I’m on the staff of Fig Tree Books, which is publishing the novel, I’d receive a copy upon the official release date of May 12).

Of course, since this was a literary event, I left the conference with more tote bags to add to my collection: one from the conference itself, and another nifty one courtesy of the LONDON REVIEW OF BOOKS.

In addition, I made a point of purchasing the local newspaper, the STAR TRIBUNE, each day I was in town. I’m so glad I did, because the excellent book coverage I’ve come to see online was even nicer to see in print. (To wit, when I ran across Roxane Gay in the Bookfair, I was able to cite Laurie Hertzel’s observation that “If you don’t run into Roxane Gay somewhere in the Twin Cities this weekend, you’re not trying.”) (http://www.startribune.com/entertainment/299204121.html)

I’m not yet certain that I’ll going to the conference next year, when the event moves to Los Angeles. (The fate of the panel proposal I’m a part of will have something to do with that.) But if I do attend, I know I’ll be able to count on returning home with some lovely literary loot!
Through Poetry Super Highway Live’s monthly Worldwide Open Poetry Readings, you can listen in as poets call in and read from their work. Maybe you’ll even want to call in and read from YOUR work. (Notes the organizer: “Use it as an opportunity to promote your new poetry book or project and let us know what’s happening in your local poetry world!”)

More information and archived broadcasts of past readings here:

(If you listen to the April show, you’ll even hear ME call in and read something.)
Mary Ballard Poetry Chapbook Prize
Deadline: June 30, 2015

This chapbook contest is for manuscripts of 20 to 40 pages of poetry. “The winner of the Mary Ballard Poetry Chapbook Prize will receive $500 and 25 printed copies of the chapbook. The chapbook will be sold in both physical and electronic versions via a publishing contract with Casey Shay Press.”
BuzzFeed Emerging Writers Fellowship
Deadline: October 1, 2015

“With the mission of diversifying the broader media landscape by investing in the next generation of necessary voices, BuzzFeed’s Emerging Writers Fellowship is designed to give writers of great promise the support, mentorship, and experience necessary to take a transformative step forward in their careers. During the four-month program, the writers in this fellowship will benefit from career mentorship and editorial guidance while also receiving financial support. The learning process must be financially viable for emerging writers if it is intended to open the gates to writers traditionally locked out of opportunities in media. These writers will focus on personal essay writing, cultural reportage, and profiles. During their time in fellowship, writers will be expected to pitch, report, and write with the added benefit of writing workshops, panel discussions with editors and writers from throughout the industry, and assigned readings. Mentorship within the program will focus on teaching writers how to thrive as freelancers as well as on staff at media organizations; this mentorship will hopefully continue well after the fellowship itself is concluded.” NB: “The writers selected for the fellowship will work with BuzzFeed News’ senior editorial staff and be based in New York. Fellows will receive a stipend of $12,000.”
Carey Institute for Global Good Nonfiction Residencies
Deadline: “Please plan ahead. The pre-application questionnaire is due three months in advance for residencies starting October 15, 2015 through May 2016. The full application is due one month thereafter.”

“Documentarians, journalists and nonfiction writers working at the professional level in their fields are eligible to apply once each calendar year. Particular areas of emphasis relate to the most pressing issues of our day, including, but not limited to: war and conflict; social justice and human rights; science, health, agriculture, environment and technology; biographies, histories and government; education; journalism and the media; and, economics and business.” As for duration, “Residencies vary in length. The minimum stay is two weeks; the maximum stay is 3 months.” (via http://twitter.com/rgay)
Duncanson Artist-in-Residence
Deadline: May 31, 2015 (received)

“To honor the relationship between African American painter Robert S. Duncanson (1821-1872) and Cincinnati art patron Nicholas Longworth (1782-1863), the Robert S. Duncanson Society of the Taft Museum of Art annually recognizes the achievements of contemporary African American artists through the Duncanson Artist-in-Residence program. For two weeks, the artist is active in the community through public events, workshops, and outreach to area schools, working with students in the classroom and at the Taft to strengthen their understanding of the arts and the relevance of the arts to their lives. The ideal candidate for 2015 will be a literary artist (writer, poet, or spoken-word artist). This year’s residency coincides with the Taft Museum of Art’s fall exhibition, Jacob Lawrence and the Hero of Haiti. The purpose of the residency is to promote and develop a deepening awareness of African American art and artists and to inspire future generations. Previous Artists-in-Residence include poet/essayist Nikki Giovanni, filmmaker William Greaves, playwright/screenwriter Keith Josef Adkins, visual artist Brian Joiner, violist Nokuthula Ngwenyama, playwright Nikkole Salter, soprano Adrienne Danrich, and jazz violinist John Blake, among others.” The residency takes place for two weeks in October and confers an honorarium of $7,500 “(plus a per diem of $56/per day; lodging and travel provided if necessary).” (via https://groups.yahoo.com/neo/groups/CRWROPPS-B/info)
Drue Heinz Literature Prize
Submissions: May 1-June 30, 2015

“The University of Pittsburgh Press announces the 2016 Drue Heinz Literature Prize for a collection of short fiction. The prize carries a cash award of $15,000 and publication by the University of Pittsburgh Press under its standard contract.” Eligibility: “The award is open to writers who have published a novel, a book-length collection of fiction, or a minimum of three short stories or novellas in commercial magazines or literary journals of national distribution. On-line publication and self-publication do not count toward this requirement.” Also: “The award is open to writers in English, whether or not they are citizens of the United States.”
LILITH Magazine Annual Fiction Contest
Deadline: May 31, 2015

“Lilith magazine’s annual fiction contest is inviting you to submit work with soul & chutzpah that speaks feministly to Jew(ish) readers. Interpret that as you will. Preferred length is 2500 words or under. Submit through Submittable. Indicate Contest in subject line.” Prize: “Winner will receive $250 and publication in Lilith.”
Proud to Be: Writing by American Warriors Annual Contest and Anthology
Deadline: June 1, 2015

“Created by the Missouri Humanities Council, the Warrior Arts Alliance, and Southeast Missouri State University Press, this series of anthologies preserves and shares military service perspectives of our soldiers and veterans of all conflicts and of their families. It is not only an outlet for artistic expression but also a document of the unique aspects of wartime in our nation’s history.” Contest confers $250 and publication for each of five categories: short fiction, poetry, interview with a warrior, essay, and photography.
Slice Literary Writers’ Conference Scholarships
Deadline: June 15, 2015

“Students currently enrolled in an undergraduate or graduate program may be eligible for a scholarship to attend the Slice Literary Writers’ Conference. Scholarships will be awarded based on financial need, a writing sample, and demonstrated dedication to writing. If you are a student and would like to be considered for a scholarship, please submit this application no later than June 15. Notification of scholarship awards will be sent via email by June 30. Please note that scholarships only cover fees to attend conference panels. Regular fees still apply if a scholarship recipient would like to attend any of our one-on-one meetings or workshops.”
Work Stew Contest #5: Go Time
Deadline: May 15, 2015 (Midnight PST)

“Describe a moment on the job, real or imagined, when you knew you had to make a change.” 600 words, maximum. Prize: “$200 for the winner, to be announced on May 22, 2015. The winning entry, and perhaps some other entries, will be published here on Work Stew.”
The Writer’s Center Emerging Writer Fellowship
Deadline: June 20, 2015

“We welcome submissions from writers of all genres, backgrounds, and experiences in the following genres: fiction, nonfiction, and poetry. Emerging Writer Fellows will be featured at The Writer’s Center as part of a special celebration and reading. Fellows living within a 250-mile radius of the center will receive a $250 honorarium, and all others will receive $500.”
During the month of May, THE PEDESTAL MAGAZINE will be open for submissions in speculative poetry (paying $40/poem) and humorous flash fiction (paying $.03/word). http://www.thepedestalmagazine.com/submitguidelines.php
Also during the month of May, WORDTECH COMMUNICATIONS LLC reads for chapbooks. Check the guidelines for the company’s imprints. Pays: “All chosen manuscripts are published under a royalty contract.” See http://www.wordtechcommunications.com/deadline-list.htm for more information.
Another May-specific opportunity: “NASHVILLE REVIEW seeks to publish the best work we can get our hands on, period. From expansive to minimalist, narrative to lyric, epiphanic to subtle—if it’s a moving work of art, we want it.” NB: You may submit fiction and poetry three times a year: January, May and September. We opt for shorter, more frequent reading periods so that we can provide quicker responses to our submitters. Submissions in all other genres are open year-round.” Pays: “We pay $25 per poem & song selection; $100 per selection for all other categories, including featured artwork.” https://wp0.its.vanderbilt.edu/nashvillereview/contact/new-submit-draft
“Published quarterly, THE GETTYSBURG REVIEW considers unsolicited submissions of poetry, fiction, and essays, from September 1 through May 31 (postmark dates). New submissions received from June 1 through August 31 are returned unread. We welcome submissions of full-color graphics year round.” Pays: “Payment is upon publication: $2.50 per line for poetry and $30 per printed page for prose. Published authors also receive a copy of the issue containing their work and a one-year subscription.” See http://www.gettysburgreview.com/submissions/ for more info.
ONE STORY’s submission window closes on May 31. “ONE STORY is seeking literary fiction. Because of our format, we can only accept stories between 3,000 and 8,000 words. They can be any style and on any subject as long as they are good. We are looking for stories that leave readers feeling satisfied and are strong enough to stand alone.” Pays: “One Story is offering $500 and 25 contributors copies for First Serial North American rights. All rights will revert to the author upon publication.” http://www.one-story.com
“GRAIN MAGAZINE, published four times per year, is an internationally acclaimed literary journal that publishes engaging, surprising, eclectic, and challenging writing and art by Canadian and international writers and artists.” Submission window closes May 31. Pays: “All contributors, regardless of genre, are paid $50 per page to a maximum of $250, plus 2 copies of the issue in which their work appears.” http://www.grainmagazine.ca/submit
From WORDRUNNER ECHAPBOOKS: “A fiction collection by one author will be considered for the Summer 2015 e-chapbook. We may also select additional collections for publication later in the year.Submissions for fiction collections will be accepted beginning April 1, 2015. Last day to submit is June 30, 2015. Stories may be flash or longer, from 750 up to 3,500 words each, totalling a minimum of approximately 8,000 and a maximum of 18,000 words for the collection. We would like a minimum of five stories, but no more than 18 (if flash fiction). They need not be linked, but it would be a plus if they belong together for some reason, be it theme, location or character/s. We will also consider novel excerpts for this echapbook.” Pays: $100. http://www.echapbook.com/submissions.html
From WORLD TRAVELER PRESS: “Following the success of our first two travel anthology books  – Chance Encounters: Travel Tales from Around the World and Adventures of a Lifetime – World Traveler Press is now accepting personal nonfiction travel essays for the anthologies listed below.” (Those anthologies are themed “Best Women’s Travels” and “Adventure Travel Tales.”) “We’re looking for compelling true tales of travel that inspire, amuse, delight or move readers. Submissions should be well-crafted first-person pieces that provide insight into a destination and its people, as well as the internal or emotional journey of travel. We’re seeking stories from around the world, and are looking for a full range of experiences, from funny or adventurous to poignant or transformational. Story length can range from 2,000 to 5,000 words. We will consider stories that have already been published as long as the author retains the copyright and right to resell the material.” Pays: “World Traveler Press pays $75 for any story we publish in one of our anthologies. Writers receive one copy of the book, and will be promoted in any marketing for the book. Writers receive an author bio at the end of their stories.” Deadline: June 30, 2015. See http://worldtravelerpress.com/submissions/ for details.
News from THE BALTIMORE REVIEW: “[W]e are now able to provide contributors with a small payment for their work ($40 Amazon gift certificate or $40 through PayPal, if preferred), and we hope to continue this as long as funding is available.” See http://baltimorereview.org/index.php/submit for more information and guidelines.
And don’t forget: FIG TREE BOOKS “accepts completed manuscripts from agents or authors of novels that deal with the American Jewish Experience.” Details: http://figtreebooks.net/submit-a-manuscript/
The newsletter is published just once each month, but there’s *always* something new at our Practicing Writing blog: fresh market news, current contest and job listings, links to writing-related articles, newly-discovered craft and business resources, and so much more. Regular blog features include:

–Monday Markets for Writers
–Midweek Notes from a Practicing Writer (formerly “Wednesday’s Work-in-Progress”)
–Friday Finds for Writers
–Sunday Sentence

Please visit, and comment! http://www.erikadreifus.com/blogs/practicing-writing/

And for those of you practicing writers who are interested in matters of specifically Jewish cultural interest, please also visit My Machberet (http://www.erikadreifus.com/blogs/my-machberet). For the curious, “machberet” is the Hebrew word for “notebook”.
Information contained in THE PRACTICING WRITER is collected from many sources, with the purpose of providing general references. It is researched to the best of our ability but readers should verify information when necessary and appropriate. THE PRACTICING WRITER and its editor/publisher disclaim any liability for the use of information contained within. Thank you for subscribing.
For updates and additional opportunity listings between newsletters, please check in with our “Practicing Writing” blog, http://www.erikadreifus.com/blogs/practicing-writing.
ABOUT THE EDITOR: Based in New York City, Erika Dreifus is the author of QUIET AMERICANS: STORIES, which is an American Library Association Sophie Brody Medal Honor Title for outstanding achievement in Jewish literature. A member of the advisory board for J JOURNAL: NEW WRITING ON JUSTICE, she has taught for Harvard University, the Cambridge (Mass.) Center for Adult Education, and the low-residency MFA programs in creative writing at Lesley University and the Northwest Institute for Literary Arts. In August 2014, Erika joined Fig Tree Books as Media Editor. Please visit http://www.erikadreifus.com to learn more about Erika’s work, and go directly to http://www.erikadreifus.com/quiet-americans/book-clubs/ to arrange for her to visit your book club!
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