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Thursday, December 27, 2007
Sonny Brewer Reading
On December 14, 2007, I had the opportunity to hear Sonny Brewer read from his new novel, "Cormac, The Tale of a Dog Gone Missing." The book is based on actual events, and tells the tale of Brewer's Golden Retriever, who ran away from his Alabama home while the owner was on a book tour in San Francisco.

Mr. Brewer read the prologue from the book which is about the death of his childhood dog. The prologue sets the stage for the narrator's love of his dog and the lengths anyone who truly loves his dog will go to in order to get his dog home.

The book does draw a grayed view of dog rescues groups as being over-zealous, seeing pet-owners as irresponsible rather than being empathetic to some one searching for a lost pet. This is the viewpoint of someone who loves animals; the same point of view that leads people to become animal rescuers. As a result, there is a message here for folks on both sides of the fence. The concerns of the pet parent and the rescuer are often the same with the welfare of the pet paramount. Love is at the heart of the matter and communication is key in making sure every dog has a safe and happy home.

Mr. Brewer is the owner of a book store in Fairhope, Alabama and founder of the annual "Southern Writer's Reading" held there each fall. He is also the editor of the anthology series "Stories from the Blue Moon Cafe," from MacAdam/Cage, and the author of "The Poet of Tolstoy Park" (Ballantine) and "A Sound Like Thunder" (Ballantine). The fifth volume in the Blue Moon Cafe series is published under the title "A Cast of Characters and Other Stories." Mr. Brewer advised that the sixth volume in the series has been assembled and will be published in the near future. There are plans for nine volumes in all.

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posted by Thomas White at 1:09 PM  0 comments

Friday, December 21, 2007
"The Attraction of Asphalt" Named for Best of the Web
Stefani Nellen's The Attraction of Asphalt, which appeared in issue 17 (June 15, 2007), has been selected for inclusion in Best of the Web 2007 (Dzanc Books). The series is edited by Nathan Leslie (The Arrival, issue 10) and the 2007 issue is guest edited by Steve Almond (The Evening of the Dock, issue 4; Pornography, issue 9; When the Toasts Stopped Being Funny, issue 18).

Congratulations to Stefani, and huge kudos to Nathan and Dzanc for making the Best of the Web series a reality, and Steve, for the massive hours he put in selecting work for this edition.

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posted by Dave Clapper at 11:32 AM  3 comments

We Three Mags of Excellence Are
We're a bit behind in posting about issues of some of our favorite lit mags to go live recently:

  • Fiction by Anne Archer, C.B. Bernard, Janice Daugharty, Nicholas Hayes, Chelsea Lowe, Rebecca Oliver, Anita Page, Joseph Rutledge, Kieran Shea, Tom Sheehan and Brandi Wells
  • Experimental writing by c.vance, Jeff Lancaster and Steven Levery
  • Poetry by Martha Clarkson, Gabriel DeCrease, Pat Galvin, Sean Kilpatrick, Amanda Latrenta Crane, Mike Meraz, Rebecca Pearson, Anne Marie Rooney and Micah Stack
  • Creative non-fiction by Kristina Marie Darling
  • Reviews of Even the Fallen by David J. Thompson

  • fiction by Jessica Newman, Rachel B. Glaser, Beth Thomas, Kathy Fish, Kim Chinquee, Matthew Stevenson, Katrina Denza, Michelle Tandoc-Pichereau, Match Ryan, Aaron Burch, Megan Roth, Chris Sheehan, Lasse Saillard, Shannon Anthony, Blake Butler, Kelly Spitzer, Ken Harshbarger, Timmy Waldron
  • poetry by Patrick Leonard, Alek Lindus, Sandy Hiss, Jeanette Sayers, Jennifer Faylor, Russell Brakefield, Brandon Scott Gorrell, Oliver Rice, Jared Wahlgren, Stephen Synnott, Peter Joseph Gloviczki, Dan Bradley
  • review by Weston Frisk

And I could've sworn there was another that we hadn't trumpeted yet, but I think that was StoryGlossia, which Katrina covered just below.

Happy holidays and happy reading!

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posted by Dave Clapper at 11:15 AM  0 comments

Saturday, December 15, 2007
SmokeLong Quarterly Issue 19
SmokeLong Quarterly Issue 19, guest edited by Jim Ruland, is now live:

Issue Nineteen (December 15, 2007): The Off-Season by Jami Attenberg «» A Company Function by Grant Bailie «» Food Spectrum of the Rainbow Family by Melissa Bell «» Holiday Inn by Kim Chinquee «» Killer Pair by Trinie Dalton «» What Happened to My Purple Flip-Flops by Arwen Dewey «» Truth (ii) by Ben Ehrenreich «» How 9) Strange by Laird Hunt «» The Mess You Made in Us by C. Robin Madigan «» Red Brick by Darlin' Neal «» A Boy Not Born Yet by Tori Malcangio «» Taco Foot by Jack Pendarvis «» Boyandaquarter by Ben Stein «» Teec Nos Pos (Circle of Cottonwoods) by Beth Thomas «» Music from 1975 by Benjamin Weissman «» Interviews: Jami Attenberg «» Grant Bailie «» Melissa Bell «» Kim Chinquee «» Trinie Dalton «» Arwen Dewey «» Ben Ehrenreich «» Laird Hunt «» C. Robin Madigan «» Tori Malacangio «» Darlin' Neal «» Jack Pendarvis «» Jim Ruland «» Ben Stein «» Beth Thomas «» Benjamin Weissman «» Cover Art "Desire" by Marty D. Ison «» Letter From the Editor

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posted by Dave Clapper at 4:46 PM  2 comments

Stats for Issue 18
Here are the stats for issue eighteen:
Issue Eighteen (live from 9/15/07-12/14/07)

9/15-9/30: 31525 page views
10/1-10/31: 54815 page views
11/1-11/30: 69617 page views
12/1-12/14: 33455 page views
Total Issue 18: 189412 page views

That's a drop of 2.95% versus the June issue. Hmm. I'm kind of surprised by this, as our fall issues have traditionally seen a rise in page views from our summer issues.

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posted by Dave Clapper at 12:57 PM  0 comments

Storyglossia's Issue 25
is a special flash fiction issue and is now live. It has pieces by SLQ contributor Aaron Burch, former SLQ editor Randall Brown, and me.

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posted by katrina at 2:42 AM  2 comments

Thursday, December 13, 2007
Reading in Seattle
Come warm yourself by the fiery words of Melanie Noel, Jared Leising, and Bret Fetzer! Thursday Dec. 13 at 7:00 PM at Tougo Coffee, 1410 18th Ave. at Union in the Central District.

"But there was the sensation of wind having been there. Tie my old shoes, Casanova. The laces are dying brown cosmos in your uncalloused hands."

Melanie Noel is a poet and lives in Seattle. Her poems have appeared in Fine Madness, Filter and on the audio magazine Weird Deer. She has written poems for the installations Partsong and Collocation, and as a live score for What Remains Unseen, an experimental documentary by James Merle Thomas. She is a co-curator for the dance, music and poetry series APOSTROPHE with Gust Burns and Beth Graczyk.

"This is how we talk, how we listen---in duendeandinnuendo. To say it straight would be easy"

Jared Leising, originally from the Midwest, received his MFA in creative writing from the University of Houston. His stories and poems have appeared in various Washington publications such as Pontoon, Crab Creek Review, Stringtown, as well as on Metro Buses and local radio. Jared has worked as a writer-in-residence for Ballard and Nathan Hale High Schools. Currently, he teaches English at Cascadia Community College and is a volunteer for 826 Seattle, a youth writing center in Greenwood.

"While scrupulous and diligent at his celestial task, on his own time the moon was lazy and prone to complain. Long were his stories of the slights he received from envious stars and comets."

Bret Fetzer writes plays and short stories. His collections of original fairy tales, 'Petals & Thorns' and 'Tooth & Tongue', are available at He is the Artistic Director of Annex Theatre and curates Spin the Bottle, Annex's monthly late-night variety show. His ISO was published in SLQ issue two.

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posted by Dave Clapper at 12:19 PM  0 comments

Wednesday, December 12, 2007
Pecha Kucha Seattle recap
So I did the Pecha Kucha thing last night. I didn't know entirely what to expect, having never been to one before. I have to give huge props to Ana Pinto da Silva, who heads up the organization team for Pecha Kucha Seattle. My impression from visiting the official international site is that most volumes of Pecha Kucha in the world (currently in 80 cities, and growing) focus a whole lot on architecture and design. Ana and her team managed to put together a wildly diverse roster:

Matthew Landkammer - Painter
Lulu Smith - Jewelry Designer
Myra Ganong-Varadi - Animal Rights Activist
Sage K. Saskill - Architect with S.A.G.E. Designs NW on sustainability (the bus depicted here once served as his home)
Aaron Briggs - Architectural Designer, on his trip to India
Gummi Brynjarsson - Photographer from Iceland
Sheila Siden - Fundraiser for Artist Trust
Ingrid Harten - Pathologist, researcher of Progeria Syndrome
Dave Clapper - that'd be me

For those unfamiliar with the format of Pecha Kucha (as I was), each presenter shows 20 slides for 20 seconds each and may verbalize in any way they wish during that time. Most of the presenters last night (but for a very few) spoke extemporaneously about the images in their slides and how they related to their larger theme. In my case, the first two slides were off-the-cuff discussions about SmokeLong in general, and about the upcoming issue specifically. And then I let folks know that my nose would be buried in text and that they should holler when the slides changed. For the next 18 slides, I read as much as I could of each of the 15 stories in our upcoming issue, as well as the first 20 seconds each of Nadine Darling's Aquarium, Melanie Rae Thon's Translation, and my own Spike. Resonance. (which, of course, has never been in SmokeLong, but I had the microphone, right?).

It was a blast. I went last and a lot of the crowd had cleared out by then, so the audience was fairly small, but they were really enthusiastic, for which I'm very thankful. They hollered as requested, and each time they whooped, I tossed aside the page I'd been reading from (often mid-sentence) and moved on to the next. The effect was often humorous, as the tone from piece to piece varied wildly, and where many of the presentations had a certain calm to them, my presentation was more frenetic. At the end of the twenty seconds of the twentieth slide, someone yelled out, "Keep reading!" Thank you, kind person, whoever you are. You were far too kind. But it would've been unbalanced to have given Benjamin Weissman more time than the other authors, so I thanked everyone and urged them to read the full issue when it comes out on Saturday.

Lots and lots and lots of fun. Ana has invited me to present again at the next edition, which will take place in February. The theme of that night will be love (it's happening a few days before Valentine's Day). For last night's, since we have an issue coming out so soon, the timing seemed perfect to do a sneak preview. For the next, we'll still be about a month away from our publication date, so our lineup won't be completely set. So...

What SmokeLong stories make you think of the theme love? I have some ideas, but I want to hear yours.

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posted by Dave Clapper at 3:28 PM  1 comments

writing and reading for a wet Wednesday
Looking for some good advice on writing and the writing life? Check out Janet Fitch's blog at myspace.

Cliff Garstang wants YOU. Actually, he wants to know your choice for best New Yorker short story of the year.

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posted by Myfanwy Collins at 6:02 AM  0 comments

Monday, December 10, 2007
Helping New Orleans kids read
Tip of the hat (and no wag of the finger) to high school classmate Jessica for pointing out a great way folks can help folks in New Orleans this holiday season. As you might expect, a lot of libraries were wiped out in Katrina. Singleton Elementary School has been clever enough to set up a wish list on Amazon to start to re-stock the school library. What a great idea! So make with the clicky clicky, won't you? And if you have the means to spread the word, what are you waiting for? Blog it!


posted by Dave Clapper at 1:35 PM  3 comments

Joseph Young joins SmokeLong Quarterly
Joseph Young, whom we've often published (The Suspect, In the Dust, Ice, The Work Week, Randomization, Photographers), and who guest edited Issue Ten, has agreed to join SmokeLong as a Submissions Editor. We are ecstatic that Joe will be joining us. This is great news for all friends of SmokeLong, readers, writers, and editors alike.

About Joe: Joseph Young lives in Baltimore where he writes and works as a freelance editor. His art writing can be found at and his microfiction at His work has also appeared in such journals as SmokeLong Quarterly, Mississippi Review, Exquisite Corpse, and elsewhere. He has a great interest in the visual arts and is busy collaborating with several artists, joining his words with their images.

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posted by Dave Clapper at 10:53 AM  0 comments

Sunday, December 09, 2007
Kim Chinquee and Rusty Barnes
discuss flash fiction with Xujun Eberlein.

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posted by katrina at 5:35 AM  0 comments

Friday, December 07, 2007
Myfanwy Collins
SLQ contributor, guest editor, and fellow news contributor has a gorgeous new story up at Monkey Bicycle.

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posted by katrina at 9:24 AM  0 comments

18 Lies and 3 Truths
New from Narrative Magazine:

18 Lies and 3 Truths

The 2007 StoryQuarterly Annual

The Gift of Great Storytelling

Is Also a Great Deal.

GOOD DEAL: $14.95 18 Lies and 3 Truths: The 2007 SQ Annual Eighteen great stories and three essays on the art of writing by today’s master storytellers: Rick Bass, Richard Bausch, T. Coraghessan Boyle, Janet Burroway, Robert Olen Butler, Alice Hoffman, Gail Godwin, Charles Johnson, Jhumpa Lahiri, Lorrie Moore, and Joyce Carol Oates, as well as by some of today’s best up-and-coming authors.

GREAT DEAL: $24.95 18 Lies and 3 Truths, plus Narrative Magazine
in trade paperback, and a Free Pass to Narrative Backstage 18 Lies and 3 Truths, plus Narrative’s 2007 paperback edition and a six-month free pass to Narrative Backstage, where you’ll go behind the scenes of great writing with Rick Bass, Ann Beattie, Charles D’Ambrosio, Jayne Anne Phillips,Robert Stone, and many others. You’ll hear about the writers’ lives, their works, and candid tales about the publishing business.

ULTIMATE DEAL: $22.95 Multiple Orders earn discounts Order two of more of our GREAT DEALS for friends, family, and story lovers of all kinds by December 19, and receive two dollars off each order.

Order 18 Lies and 3 Truths today!

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posted by Myfanwy Collins at 6:38 AM  0 comments

Thursday, December 06, 2007
has new lit journal reviews up.

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posted by katrina at 8:01 AM  0 comments

Word After Word
Here's a great blog by the super talented Heather Sellers. I hope you find it as inspiring as I do.


posted by katrina at 7:52 AM  0 comments

Tuesday, December 04, 2007
Seattle Pecha Kucha Vol.04
As one of the presenters at Pecha Kucha, I'll be offering a sneak preview of our December 15 issue. If you're in Seattle, come by for drinks and fun and say hello, won't ya?

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posted by Dave Clapper at 10:52 AM  2 comments

Jim Tomlinson Wins NEA Grant
Congratulations to Jim Tomlinson, author of Things Kept, Things Left Behind, and SLQ contributor, for winning a 2008 NEA Grant!

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posted by katrina at 7:24 AM  1 comments

Monday, December 03, 2007
Guest Editors for Issues 20 and 22, Special Issue 21
SmokeLong is very proud to announce our guest editors and plans for our next three issues.
Claudia SmithIssue 20 (March 15, 2008)
Claudia Smith's stories have been anthologized in W.W. Norton's The New Sudden Fiction and So New Media's Consumed: Women on Excess. Her chapbook, The Sky Is a Well and Other Shorts is available from Rose Metal Press. Her work may be found at
SmokeLong QuarterlyIssue Twenty-one (June 15, 2008)
SmokeLong Quarterly celebrates its fifth birthday with a special double issue. Expect the mix of familiar and new-to-you voices we've always had, with an additional helping of stories from folks to whom we'll always be indebted. Stay tuned!
Tony RomanoIssue 22 (September 15, 2008)
Tony Romano is the author of the novel, When the World Was Young (HarperCollins) and the story collection, If You Eat, You Never Die (forthcoming from HarperCollins). He is also the coauthor of Psychology and You 3E (McGraw-Hill), a bestselling textbook, and Expository Composition: Discovering Your Voice (EMCP). He was awarded The Whetstone Prize, and his work has been supported in part by several grants from the Illinois Arts Council, a state agency. He is a two-time winner of a PEN Syndicated Fiction Project award. Both stories were produced on National Public Radio's "The Sound of Writing" series and syndicated to newspapers nationwide. One of the stories was selected as one of the Project's ten best stories. His fiction has appeared in The Chicago Tribune Magazine, VIA: Voices in Italian Americana (Purdue University), Whetstone, Sou'wester, and Bluff City. Two of his stories were nominated for a Pushcart Prize. He is the producer of several spoken word CDs, Writers Week, featuring memoirist Mary Karr, poet laureate Billy Collins, Pulitzer-Prize-winning columnist Rick Bragg, poetry slam originator Marc Smith, NPR commentator Daniel Ferri, poet Naomi Shihab Nye, and many others. He gives readings of his work in the Chicago area, where he lives with his wife and three daughters.

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posted by Dave Clapper at 1:10 PM  356 comments

Top Ten Page Views for November
Well, well, well. For the second month in a row, "Pornography" ain't numero uno. Maybe its stranglehold has finally loosened. The number one, however, has an image of a breast. I guess we know what readers want, huh?

1. (NR) 8x10 by Elizabeth Ellen (12/15/06)
2. (4) Ten Very Short Stories by John Leary (3/15/07)
3. (1) When the Toasts Stopped Being Funny by Steve Almond (9/15/07)
4. (3) Raymond Carver by Dan Chaon (9/15/07)
5. (7) Nailed by Robert J. Bradley (9/15/07)
6. (6) Mole Man by Stuart Dybek (9/15/07)
7. (2) Pornography by Steve Almond (6/15/05)
8. (5) Ethnic Lego Girls Carry Spears by Heidi W. Durrow (9/15/07)
9. (8) Party by Emily Fridlund (9/15/07)
10. (9) The Sound of Success by Terry DeHart (9/15/07)

Total page views for the month was 66,704, which is right in line with the monthly average for the year of 66,141.18. The total for the year so far is 727,553, so a good December should push us over 800,000 page views for the year! I wanna break a million in '08.

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posted by Dave Clapper at 11:10 AM  0 comments

Saturday, December 01, 2007
Call for Submissions: Storyglossia
Submissions have opened once again, for Issue #27, guest edited by me. I'm thrilled by this invitation to be a part of Storyglossia, a journal I've long admired.

Please note that the guidelines have changed.

I'm looking forward to reading your submissions!

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posted by katrina at 5:22 AM  2 comments

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