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En Bloc: Magazine Review

Hello! Welcome back, my lovelies! It’s Magazine Monday… a day early LOL

I really enjoy literary magazines—although the price can be off putting, getting the right one can feel like you’ve found a magical unicorn. When I go to Barnes & Noble, I generally only buy my magazines there. I mostly read on my Nook. Once upon a time, the selection at any given B&N would be relatively the same. Not so this last time. I don’t know if they are selling out, or if the different stores carry different magazines. Also, sometimes the publish date seems like it was a long time ago, but with the ramifications of Covid across so many industries, I’m willing to hold my piece on this.  However, this is an interesting conundrum: I have one near my work and one closer to my home.  If they carry differing magazines, I need to figure out when the ones I like come in at each one. If they are the same and just selling out quick, well. That makes life So. Much. Easier.

I am not going to subscribe. I don’t like reading magazines on my Nook, and the US Post Office has dropped the ball. When Covid hit, I subscribed to 2 magazines. One of them I didn’t get 3 issues of. And  it’s bi-monthly! So half the issues! Yes, they sent them out to me, but really? Once things started opening up… I want to go and browse.

Today I want to talk to you about one of those browsing finds. This is from the Momcation trip to B&N. I found a little imported Literary Zine called En Bloc. It is imported from the UK, and so is one of the ones in the US that has a little bit of a hefty price tag.

The cover is eye catching and fun, a mustachioed popsicle sticking out its tongue. I am happy to say that the insides are also eye catching. The Letter from the Editor(Samuel Leach) has a large chunk of it that has a line drawn through it, and then he begins. Again. Kind of like the last bit of life has been for us.  This magazine has photography, an interview with Bill Plympton, poetry and of course the fiction that I loved. Both the for the enjoyment of reading the story, and for the techniques.

Because I write too. It’s always awesome to find writer’s excelling at telling stories in a different way. “Baby Brownie” by Ian Cowmeadow tells the story both in the past and future. It is handled really well, with the reader (me) never getting lost, and still engrossed in the story and not just geeking out over the writing. “Elanor’s Party” by Dave Gerow is one of the few stories I’ve read in Second Person perspective that really does grab you into the story and not let go.

The issue I found at B&N was the first issue. The second issue looks like it is out, based on their website (link below). I can’t wait to find it in the store.

The stories caught my eye, kept me interested. As I am a fickle, picky reader this is a great feeling! While I did read every story (I skipped most in other magazines—which will remain nameless), however there were 2 that stayed with me.

Overall verdict, not only will I buy again, it is the sort of magazine I want to share with my friends so we can talk about the stories.

En Bloc

https://enbloc.co.uk/shop/

Poem A Day

Is not going well
I’m sorry to say

The pen dried up
The paper burned
in an imaginary fire
My chisel for the tablet
Cracked in half

Or maybe

My imagination failed
I didn’t get the memo
The kid ate my poem
(The dog turned up it’s nose)

Or maybe

New habits take time
A little grace extended
To self is rare indeed
And it’s time to

Begin again

January 2021

So January was a good one for the writing. Maybe — Maybe not.

I have a story being held for consideration (fingers crossed and good vibes). Which in terms of goals means that I am actually submitting my work.

My writing sister from another mother (hi Rie!) Challenged me to a poem a day for the year. I am missing few days, but I have been doing it. Which is funny because I don’t identify as a poet but….

But when I was pigtails young, I did. I wrote a little chapbook for the school book project. At some point I stopped– lack of confidence, one too many insults? No clue. But I did, and now I am flexing those creaking poetry muscles and it feels good.

And then the cards! I did another batch on cards for the retirement home, which is still on lockdown. 70 this time. I was only able to do it because my bff Linda came over and we cracked them off. AT the beginning of the pandemic lots of people did lots of things for those that were shut in. We need to remember them. So I did– we did.

Happy New Year-ish

So i have made lots of goals for 2021. Not resolutions, just a nod to things I want to do differently. I started most of them in December, at the very end. I just couldn’t wait.

One thing I’m trying to do is submit my work, my writing more. I enjoy writing, and I have several stories that need homes. I wrote 4 or 5 last year and while not a huge amount– it is still an accomplishment I am proud of. I’ve sent 2 stories out, hopefully to find a home.

I’ve started journalling creatively for 10 minutes before going to bed. It helps with story generation, and also working things out. A fire kitten may be making an appearance in a story soon.

One of my dear friends, my sister from another mother, challenged me to a poem a day writing challenge for the year. I don’t consider myself a poet, but it doesnt say anything about GOOD poetry LOL.

I bought an undated planner and am using it to tey and work out a story I am working on. The story has a lot going on and will probably be longer than most of my writing. I tend to do short and sweet, this needs room to breathe.

So that’s what I’m getting into for 2021. How about you? Any wild crazy plans? Or slow and steady wins the race?

Neuro

My path is not the

Straight and narrow 

Of your ken…

You say you understand,

My brain isn’t wired like yours.

And yet, 

Every time,

Everyday,

I have to fight for the

Simple right

To be 

Who 

Am.

If I had autism

I’d fit in your b
ox.

If I had ADD

You’d feel better

Putting pills 

In my mouth.

It’s not my fault

You choose not 

to see….

There are no boxes 

For souls

And mine is beautiful

Even if you choose

Not

to

See.

Boys and poetry

The princeling and I often talk about stories. Last weekend, I listened to him try to rewrite all of my stories. Every single one. 

While cleaning up some papers, I came across a poem we had started together. I remembered the first line, but had forgotten he had written the second. And now I know why he and I don’t work poetry much. He’s 11. And a boy. And I shouldn’t have been suprised….

Here goes…..

If I had a robot heart,

Would I be able to fart.

Yup, my son has mad rhyming skills.

Niht Dance

The stars were crisp and clear 

in the night sky. 

Tree tops reached, 

trying to touch the tiny dancers, 

but they spun away,

too and fro, 

in a dance only

 a master can teach.

 Did they spin to and fro,

 or was the world

 spinning in its own dance?

Or did I finally 

Finally 

have a chance to see 

Night in all her glory

and breathe?

Bones

I saw the bones

Of the world

Washed up on shore

Stripped bare of the

Taint of hate

Laying side by side

One atop another

Coexisting
No care for male 

Or female

Republican or Democrat

Black or white

Brown or tan.
How long until

We no longer

Need to wait

Until we’re bones?

Authorial Intent & Readers

First, when speaking of authorial intent, I’m not talking about when you write a tragic love scene but somehow everyone who reads it is laughing hysterically when they should be crying.That is craft and beyond the scope of this 🙂

No, for today, we’re talking about the task of trying to figure out what a passage means (as dictated by the author), or who a poet is writing to. You know, fun stuff.

But is it? I know in college we had to play these games, and back it up with “proof” from the manuscript, but the truth of the matter is… None of it mattered. Not one whit, to my reader self.

My reader self saw a line from one of the cannon and went “oh”, quiet and small in the beauty of the phrase. I wasn’t concerned about the implications of the phrase, about who the narrator was speaking to, or any of that.

I was wrapped in the beauty of the words.

And that is what, ultimately, we writers want. We want readers to become wrapped up in our worlds, our words.

Does it matter to you who I wrote the following to:

 

We danced in
the kitchen,
sunshine just
kissing the sky.
The whole world
wrapped in my arms.
We sang your
favorite lullabye
before the day came
to take us our
separate
ways.

 

Does it matter who I wrote it to? What I wrote it about? Or does it ultimately matter more what you get from reading it? As writers, we map a journey. We do it artfully, with any luck, but we map it out. The reader must take the journey.

So.

Authorial intent.

I never really cared who Shakespeare wrote his sonnets to. I only wished someone loved me enough to try and pretend they had written one for me LOL

 

Have a wonderful weekend, my lovelies, filled with writing or reading. Or both.

 

 

Shifting Sideways: When work becomes play

I may have mentioned my dirty little secret: I love stationary. I adore it. I like cards, specifically, that have no printing on the inside. I write in them in portrait mode, whether the picture is portrait or landscape. Don’t know why I write in them like that, I just do. At least I don’t just sit there and look at them in all their glory, spread across my bed.. At least not all the time.

I do write letters. Copious amounts of letters.

I had started playing with pictures and words when it came to my stories:

The dragon burped, sending blue sparkles all

And then I had the post with Mel. The one with the visual poetry? Breaking Rythm can be found here if the link doesn’t work: https://wynwords.wordpress.com/2015/07/22/breaking-rhythm-tribe-tuesday/

And my brain has exploded within the past two weeks.

What if… What if…. I could combine two of my favorite things? AWESOME! Even if I only ever make the cards for me, this is something that I love love love!

Here’s the one I’m working on right now:

Poem Stone Multimedia

The title has changed, as has the font and color of the font. Still couldn’t get it quite right, so have sent it off to Leyla, my niece (who also sometimes admins my facebook page for me – Hi Leyla!). I’ve also done one for a friend, and will do another one for her.

This is play. This is fun.

This is joy.

And we should all have something in our lives that brings us joy.

What are you doing in  your writing life, or life in general, that brings you joy?

© 2015 Wynelda Ann Deaver All Rights Reserved