Our sincerest thanks to all those who submitted, and our heartiest congratulations to our winners! Your pieces stood out from a large yet high calibre pool of submissions.
Winners, and more SLS Lithuania and Kenya updates, after the jump!
1600 entries! Y’all are awesome!
You stragglers are in luck: we’ve extended the deadline for our unified literary contest to 6 MARCH 2012! Click the link above for full submission details.
Check out our newsletter for, well, news about both our contests—the deadlines are fast approaching! Also included: updates to our Lithuania 2012 program!
That’s right, folks, we’re now partnering with the esteemed St. Petersburg Review. Have you submitted yet? The deadline—February 28—is fast approaching!
Be sure to check out our Facebook photo contest as well! Submit to firstname.lastname@example.org, and hit “Like” to vote for your favourites! Details here.
You heard us. Hop to it! Mike’s been dishing out killer pieces with style and ease, writing satire and personal essays that make us look shabby. And he’s the 1998 Olympic gold medallist for Canada in llama dressage! Come on, y’all, this is a no-brainer.
The effortlessly cool Maria Williams-Russell, Montreal ‘11 participant, has been published over at Boxcar Poetry Review. Read it now!
Terrific interview with Steve Almond over at The Days of Yore. The following section really struck a chord with this moi:
The Days of Yore: If you could time-travel back to yourself as a writer and a human at a younger age, what would your advice to that person be?
Steve Almond: It took me a while to stop being a serious young writer and start writing stuff that was more honest. I was in this trap of writing obedient stories, and some of them got into magazines—it’s not that they were terrible, just that they were not who I was. They were earnest. And I’m earnest, but they weren’t the other things that rescue me from being insufferably earnest, like being a smartass, or having a certain moral outrage or a willingness to say impolite things or push characters into messy, dangerous situations.
I’m forty-five now, and it’s only in the last ten years that I’ve been able to stop worrying about being a serious writer and let me personality onto the page. But you know, I wouldn’t have listened to that advice. You’re as stubborn as you are. You have to get bored with your current incarnation, and then you change. You say, “I can’t stand being this person anymore.” Then you allow yourself to write something radically truthful or outrageous or dangerous. And the world usually tells you that’s the thing.
I wrote this book about candy, and I thought it was ridiculous. But it turns out to be the thing that people enjoy, partly because it’s a subject everybody connects to, but also because it was written out of desperation. I had spectacularly failed at the big historical grand epic novel I was going to write, and my first book of stories had done nothing, as stories do. I was depressed and fucked up, and sometimes that’s the exact place you have to get to. I’m not trying to exalt being in that state, but I was not in a healthy place and that need to be distracted by other people’s stories and grab at this pleasure I’d had as a kid—I think that’s what people responded to and why they liked that book.
Since meeting Almond last June in Montreal, I have remained impressed by his depth of emotion and perception. There’s something in this interview for everyone, folks! Check it out if you haven’t already.
Please enjoy the fiction of the inimitable Ian Orti, as well as the poetry of Nat Sufrin (Montreal ‘11 participant), in the latest issue of TriQuarterly Online. Congratulations to both!