Writing about Writing

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Posts tagged fiction

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To say that Nietzsche had a dislike for the nation-state would be a gross understatement. ‘Fatherlandishness’ is irrational ‘soil addiction’. In Thus Spoke Zarathustra, he refers to the state as ‘the coldest of all cold monsters.’ It is the ‘New Idol,’ now that god has died. Nationalism is a swindle, perpetrated by politicians. It is ‘insanity.’ Perhaps, most importantly, Nietzsche claims that nationalism is a ‘fiction,’ something that has been made.
Andrew M. Koch, “Dionysian Politics: The Anarchistic Implications of Friedrich Nietzsche’s Critique of Western Epistemology” from I Am Not A Man, I Am Dynamite!: Friedrich Nietzsche and the Anarchist Tradition pg. 58

Filed under Nietzsche anarchism the State nation-state Andrew M Koch politicians lies fiction insanity anarchy

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filling Station #55: The Northern BC Issue

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The first issue of filling Station for 2013 is hot off  the presses and will be launching February 8th. We’re very, very excited about this issue and think you should be too. Here’s why:

  • Issue 55 is our Northern BC issue, where you’ll have a chance to experience some of the best fiction, poetry, non-fiction, and art from this unique and under-represented region of Canada.

  • We’ve got poetry by the likes of Gillian Wigmore, Derrick S. Denholme, Jeremy Stewart, and GP Lainsbury ranging from mathematical meditations on the logging industry to an exploration of PG (Prince George) social customs to a trip through the fractured yet transcendental thoughts of a homeless person.

  • If poetry’s not your bag, we’ve also got a story by Carly Stewart about an unenthusiastic stalker, and an absolutely beautiful graphic narrative by Kara Sievewright that weaves together the intricate story of the city of Prince Rupert’s violent history.

  • Our non-fiction section for Issue 55 is chock full of interesting interviews with the likes of literary pioneer Barry McKinnon, as well as some creative essays by Sarah de Leeuw on small town film fests, lightning, and dogs lost to the cold and wild.

  • This issue features a bold and exciting new redesign by the extremely talented Natalie Olson, who you may know from some of her recent book cover designs.

All in all this promises to be an amazing issue of the magazine, and I encourage you to pick up a copy or a subscription at our online store anytime after February 8th.

Filed under filling Station experimental literature Can Lit canadian lit Northern BC poetry fiction non-fiction

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Hey ya’ll, We here at filling Station have just launched our annual Holiday Sale! All through the month of December, get 3-Issue Subscriptions for just $15 and 6-Issue Subscriptions for just $25. Also, with the purchase of your own subscription, you get the option of purchasing up to 5 Gift Subscriptions for $10 each - perfect for the literature lovers on your list. Check it out at: http://fillingstation.ca/subscribe

Hey ya’ll,
We here at filling Station have just launched our annual Holiday Sale! All through the month of December, get 3-Issue Subscriptions for just $15 and 6-Issue Subscriptions for just $25. Also, with the purchase of your own subscription, you get the option of purchasing up to 5 Gift Subscriptions for $10 each - perfect for the literature lovers on your list. Check it out at: http://fillingstation.ca/
subscribe

Filed under magazine literature filling Station fiction poetry lit nonfiction reviews art canadian lit

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Hey ya’ll,The new issue of filling Station is out now! Issue 54 is jam-packed full of experimental poetry, fiction, nonfiction and art by the likes of Nathaniel G. Moore, Eric Zboya, derek beaulieu, Elodie Olson-Coons, Rod-Moody Corbett, and Lisa Brawn. So why not order a copy online at: http://fillingstation.myshopify.com/or maybe pick up a 3-issue subscription for $20 or 6-issues for $36?I’ll love you forever!

Hey ya’ll,
The new issue of filling Station is out now! Issue 54 is jam-packed full of experimental poetry, fiction, nonfiction and art by the likes of Nathaniel G. Moore, Eric Zboya, derek beaulieu, Elodie Olson-Coons, Rod-Moody Corbett, and Lisa Brawn.
So why not order a copy online at: http://fillingstation.myshopify.com/
or maybe pick up a 3-issue subscription for $20 or 6-issues for $36?
I’ll love you forever!

Filed under filling station lit books magazine experimental literature poetry fiction nonfiction art

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On Y.A. Fiction and Broad Cultural Trends

Tomorrow, a filmic version of Suzanne CollinsThe Hunger Games – the most recent manifestation of our culture’s obsession with popular teen fiction – will be released in Canada. I haven’t read the books (though, when I heard the premise for the series, I immediately caught  on to its blatant similarity to Koushun Takami’s 1999 novel Battle Royal) and I have little interest in seeing the film adaptation, but I think its release offers me a good opportunity to write about something my husband Christoph and I have been discussing for a while – the growing prevalence and popularity of Y.A. (young adult) fiction, not only within the desired teenage demographic, but within the culture at large.

Read more …

Filed under The Hunger Games Y.A. Fiction Literature Cultural Trends Adolescence

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On The Pros and Cons of Simultaneous Submissions

Whether or not literary journals should allow or prohibit simultaneous submissions is sort of a contentious issue in the literary world. It used to be that many, if not most, lit journals were firmly against accepting works for consideration that had been submitted to other publications at the same time. There are a lot of reasons for having this kind of policy, not the least of which being the potential legal complications that could arise if a selected story or poem were to be published in two different places at once, with both publications claiming first serial rights to the piece. And of course, there is also the personal frustration of editors and lit journal staff who put hours and hours of work into slogging through piles of submissions, only to find out that one of the pieces they would absolutely love to published has been picked up by someone else. I imagine such an experience would feel like a lot of wasted time and effort.
But with more and more online lit journals and magazines cropping up on the internet, policies around simultaneous submissions seem to be changing. As with many things on the internet, the trend seems to be a shift in focus away from the larger organizations (in this case, the lit journals) to the individual (in this case, the writer). Coupled with the typically lengthy amount of time it takes to receive a response from journals, usually in the neighborhood of 3-6 months, the inability to submit the same story/poem (or set of stories/poems) to a variety of publications at the same time is notoriously frustrating for writers. Especially considering that most writers will receive more rejections than acceptance of their work (the figure I’ve heard tossed around is that the typical emerging writer will receive 60-100 rejection letters for every 1 piece they have picked up for publication). Online literary journals generally have lax policies on simultaneous submissions, acknowledging that, in order for writers to maximize their chances of getting published, said writers need to send their stories out to as many publications as possible, and that email, with its potential for nearly instantaneous communication, reduces the chances of accidental legal complications. This can be a real benefit for new writers who are trying to get themselves established, as it dramatically increases their ability to get work out there for the reading public, and to get some publication credits under their belt.
Of course, there are some drawbacks to the increase in online lit journals. In one sense, it can decrease the chance that a writer’s work will be read, unless they are very good at self-promotion. I love literature. I love to read it, and I love to write it, but there is no way I can keep up with all the content being published on the internet. At most, I find I am able to regularly keep up with 2 or 3 print lit journals, and 2 or 3 online ones. And I have, relatively, a lot of free time. I imagine that busy editors have much less time to be trying to keep up with the huge number of works being published online every day.
And then, of course, there’s the issue of payment. Most online literary journals cannot afford to pay an honorarium, and while publication is, in itself, a huge joy and accomplishment, writers also need to get paid. Most paying publications don’t accept simultaneous submissions, and it is very rare to see a short story or poetry contest that will consider manuscripts that have been sent elsewhere at the same time. So, often times, writers have to weigh their options. Being able to submit the same story to many journals simultaneously increases the chances that it will be published, but if a piece is submitted simultaneously, it also decreases the chances that the writer will get paid for the eventual publication. On the other hand, unless you’re a very well-established writer, submitting to print journals that don’t take simultaneous submissions is something of a gamble. Chances are, your piece won’t get published, in which case, you’ll spend 3-6 months waiting for a rejection letter, during which time you don’t have the option of sending your story or poem anywhere else. But then, on the off chance it does get accepted, you’ll not only get published, but you’ll also get paid, even if it’s just a small honorarium. Then there’s the added prestige of winning or being shortlisted for lit competitions, and the position of respect that some print journals have over the vast majority of online publications.
In short, it’s a sticky situation for writers. Trying to decide where to submit my work is always a tough choice for me. I get conflicted about what I want, what would be most advantageous to me as a writer in the long run, and how strong I think my work is. There’s a big gap between getting published in a relatively new online lit journal, and having a piece accepted by The New Yorker or McSweeney’s. My work is obviously not at that level, yet. But I hope it will be someday, and the only way to improve is to keep working at it. In the meantime, I’ll continue to consider the pros and cons of simultaneous vs. single submissions.

Filed under writing fiction poetry lit lit journals simultaneous submissions