Congratulations to Maurice Carlos Ruffin, whose hot streak continues unabated! The opening chapter to Maurice’s novel-in-progress will be published in Callaloo Journal. A fantastic book in progress, and the opening chapter is breath-taking; it’s great that it will be in such a great journal!
Founding Peauxdunquian Terri Stoor has learned that her short story, “Bellyful of Sparrow,” will be published in an upcoming issue of The Missouri Review! “Bellyful” previously was awarded the gold medal in the short story category of the William Faulkner-William Wisdom writing competition. TMR will be an excellent home for its publication!
Susan Vallee, Peauxdunque’s Florida contingent, checks in with a new book, Meet Me On 30A, published by Southwestern Publishing Group. Susan writes about the mix of natural habitat, old Florida coastal charm, and new urbanism along the stretch of Florida panhandle coast ribboned by highway 30A, and the book includes a number of photographs by Florida artists and recipes from chefs whose restaurants line the highway.
In additional publication news, Tad Bartlett has learned that his short story, “Through the Valley of the Shadow of Home,” has been accepted for publication in the October 2014 issue of up-and-coming journal, Bird’s Thumb. Tad performed a reading of this story at the Sunday Shorts reading series co-sponsored by Peauxdunque and the Melanated Writers Collective at the Red Star Galerie last year.
We’ve been not keeping the secret very well over on Facebook, but for purposes of the official Internet we’ve waited for The Iowa Review to announce it themselves; so, finally, here’s the most excellent news from Peauxdunque: Maurice Carlos Ruffin is the 2014 winner of the Iowa Review Award for fiction, for his short story, “The Ones Who Don’t Say They Love You,” selected by final judge Rachel Kushner. Ms. Kushner says, of Maurice’s story, “This story grabs and doesn’t let go. It telegraphs a host of conflicting sensations, and powerfully: boredom, violence, dreams, an innocence that is free of narrative cliche or any cliche.“
The story is a relatively new one for Maurice, written last fall and finished in November, and illustrates a valuable precept about getting the work out into the world. Maurice notes that the story was rejected thirteen times since he began submitting it in late November, 2013. Some of the rejections were quick, including a seven-day rejection from one journal and an eleven-day rejection from another that Maurice has been trying to get into for a long time (and which he notes “has broken [his] peanut-brittle heart 1,000 times over the years”). From all this, Maurice reminds us, “The rule maintains. Submit often and brush the rejections from your shoulders.” Indeed.
Many congratulations, Meaux! Maurice’s story should appear in the final 2014 issue of The Iowa Review, in December.
Also, the wonderful book, Unfathomable City: A New Orleans Atlas, containing Maurice‘s excellent essay on the St. Claude Avenue corridor, has been selected as the book for the 2014 One Book One New Orleans project.
Among recent competition wins and awards by Peauxdunquians lately, Tad Bartlett‘s story, “Superpowerless,” received the Svenson Award for Fiction, awarded annually by the UNO Creative Writing Workshop. We also have news of another incredible competition win by a Peauxdunque denizen, but have to hold our huzzahs until that competition makes its official announcement; but when it comes, we’ll share a behind-the-scenes story of how it came to be. Stay tuned!
As part of the New Orleans Public Library’s month-long series of events for National Poetry Month, Peauxdunque was invited to present a reading at the Nix Branch of the New Orleans Public Library on Thursday, April 24. Cassie Pruyn and Matt Robinson brought together a slate of poets, including themselves and Zach Bartlett, Emilie Staat, and Tad Bartlett. Drinks, of course, followed.