New Publications

October is turning out to be a great month for me. Not only has it been unusually warm here in New England, but I’ve recently had several of my works appear in both print and online journals.

First, my magical realism short story “Reflections” appeared in the first issue of Moonchild Magazine.

Second, my poem “Yahoo, I’ve Been Hacked” is in the inaugural issue of Hi Vis Press’ new print journal, Low Light Magazine.

Finally, my spooky Halloween found poem “The Devil” is in Unlost Journal.

Check them out. Then submit your work to them.

Advertisements

New Poems

I’ve had some new poems published recently.

A Pre-Summer Daydream” was published at Lit Up, a cool journal edited by DiAmaya Dawn and Alexandro Chen, who are both great writers in their own right.

Nadia Gerassimenko, whose poetry chapbook Moonchild Dreams comes highly recommended, published three more of my poems on her Tepid Autumn site. Nadia is not only writes great poems and nonfiction pieces, but she is also the editor-in-chief of Moonchild Magazine and associate editor of Luna Luna Magazine.

The Twelve Opossums

My creative nonfiction piece “The Twelve Opossums,” which I discussed earlier this month, is now up at Ellipsis Zine. Thanks to editor Steve Campbell for publishing it.

Ellipsis Zine has only been around for a short time, but they’ve been killing it, so it’s quite an honor to have a piece published at this site. So if you’re looking for something to read, there’s plenty of great stuff there.

http://www.ellipsiszine.com/the-twelve-opossums-by-christopher-iacono/

Stranger Than Fiction

Last month, I was excited to receive two acceptances. The first was from Hi Vis Press for a poem titled “Yahoo, I’ve Been Hacked.” It will be appearing in the inaugural issue of Hi Vis Press’ new magazine, Low Light, in September. Hi Vis Press is run by the same good folks who used to edit Hand Job Zine, which published a couple of my poems last summer.

The second was from a new online journal, Ellipsis Zine, for a short creative nonfiction (or CNF) piece titled “The Twelve Opossums.”

I’ll talk about the poem and the somewhat unusual inspiration for it in a future post, but today I’d like to talk about writing “The Twelve Opossums.”

If you glance at the tabs on my website, you’ll notice “About,” “Fiction and Poetry” and “Book Reviews.” There’s nothing about nonfiction or CNF. (By the way, I guess once “The Twelve Opossums” is published, I’m going to have to change the name of that second tab.) Not to say that I have never written nonfiction at all—I had a brief career as a journalist back in the nineties, and I’ve chronicled my writing (mis)adventures in this blog—but this is the first time I’ve written a nonfiction piece specifically written for a literary magazine audience.

Also, for the first time, the main character of a work is, well, me. Sure, I’ve written about myself in the blog posts (probably more than I should), but this time, I’ve become a character (although some people already think I’m quite a character). Of course, this character is obviously one I know very well, but still, it feels strange to be looking at yourself from the point of view of a creator.

As other writers do, I mine my experiences for my fiction and poetry, but I’ve never written anything I would consider autobiographical (“Against the Waves” was close, but the main story was a synthesis of different events that had taken place over years, and some of the characters were also conglomerates). The reason I hadn’t tackled CNF in the past is quite simply because I didn’t think any of my life experiences were that interesting. If Haruki Murakami thinks his life story could only fit on one page, I think mine would fit on a quarter of a page.

In fact, the event that inspired the piece was not earth-shattering; to be honest, it’s really nothing more a humorous anecdote. But I wanted to at least try turning that anecdote into something else. Doing that required me to not only relive that moment but dig deeper into it. Why do I want to tell this story? What can readers get out of it besides a few laughs? Also, while I’ve recounted this anecdote to many people over the years, I’ve never really considered the details, which is what I had to do for this piece. (Considering that the event took place thirty-four years ago, I’m surprised how much of it I remembered.)

At first, I was going to make it a straight memoir piece, but then I decided to really the put the C in CNF by borrowing techniques from experimental fiction. Doing this helped me to look at the event from a different angle, and I think it adds a different layer to the story. Using these techniques may not work for all CNF pieces I write going forward, but I think they worked for this particular story. I hope you will feel the same way when the piece is published later this month.

In the meantime, have you written/published any CNF pieces? If so, please feel free to talk about them and provide links in the comments.

Nonsensically Challenged

So I’m quite excited to announce that my tiny prose piece “Anthony Burned a Hole in the Rain” is in a new anthology, Nonsensically Challenged Vol. 1.

The anthology, which includes 100 stories by as many authors, is being published on Amazon by writer/musician Christopher Fielden and is available in either print or Kindle format. Profits from sales of the book go to the Daisy Garland. The book is pretty cheap (£2.49 in the UK and $3.21 in the US for the Kindle edition, and £6.99 and $8.49 for the print), so not only is it a good deal for 100 stories, but you’ll be helping children with epilepsy.

Fielden is a pretty prolific author, but he also dedicates a lot of time to his website, which is a great resource for writers. He also offers challenges (such as the one I participated in, Lesley’s Nifty Nib-Nibbling Nonsensical Narrative Writing Challenge) and publishes most of the entries. In fact, right now, Fielden is looking for pieces for Vol. 2 of Nonsensically Challenged, so if you’re interested, you should check it out. There are some other challenges as well, so if nonsense isn’t your thing, there might be something else to interest you, so definitely take a look. Who knows? You may end up in a future anthology.

One more thing: If you do buy the anthology, two things: First of all, thank you. Second of all, if you like it, please consider leaving a review on Amazon. As I mentioned, not only would you be supporting the efforts of Christopher Fielden and the writers involved, but you will be helping a good cause as well.

Life, the Universe, and Poetry

In last month’s post, I mentioned I was going to participate in this year’s National Poetry Writing Month (NaPoWriMo). My goal was to write 30 poems in 30 days.

Well, I exceeded that goal: I wrote 41 poems in 23 days! This was quite a surprise, considering that last year, I only wrote about 16 poems during the month of April.

I was going to stop at 41, but then my friend Corrie Haldane suggested that I write one more, which would bring me up to 42. She also suggested doing a “meaning of life” poem. (For those who’ve never read Douglas Adams’ The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy books and don’t know the connection between the number 42 and “life, the universe, and everything,” watch the video below.)

I loved the idea, but what kind of “meaning of life” poem should I write? A sonnet? A haiku? An elevenie?

Then while I was spending too much time on Facebook, playing too many “I’ve seen 10 artists but one of them is a lie” games, I decided to have a little fun. I composed a found poem using text from various memes that showed up in my Facebook news feed over a few days.

So without further adieu, here is my poem about life, the universe, and everything. It’s not exactly a prize-winner, but it’s always fun to put something like this together.

 

Wanted:

a personal idyll,

a special place

free from the

surplus of evil

we have already.

 

A place where one day

the sadness will end

and you don’t wake up

fighting a battle

you know nothing about.

 

When happiness

is just a thought away,

you bring a smile

to your face and say,

This is my life now.

 

Source: Various memes found on Facebook, April 25-28, 2017.