Peauxdunque is lucky to have incredible poets (ha, “Peaux-ets,” ain’t we clever) call our humble environs home, and even luckier that they are so recognized out in the wider world, too. Just this week, Nordette Adams, along with Andy Young and editor Julie Kane, were featured on WWNO’s The Reading Life, reading work from the recent poetry anthology, Nasty Women Poets: An Unapologetic Anthology of Subversive Verse. We’ve also learned that Cassie Pruyn‘s award-winning debut book of poetry, Lena, was named to Jacar Press’s Finalists Long List for the 2017 Suk Award!
For a year, we’ve been working hard behind the scenes, and today is the day it all begins to emerge from under wraps: The Peauxdunque Review is born. Under the guidance of Editor-in-Chief Larry Wormington, Editorial Board at-large member Emily Choate, Poetry Editor Cassie Pruyn, Non-fiction Editor April Blevins Pejic, and Fiction Editor Andrew Kooy, along with a cast of many of your favorite Peauxdunquians, a vision has slowly taken shape.
Today, the Review is open for submissions of short fiction, flash fiction, creative non-fiction, and poetry. We are also excited to announce that we are open for submission of entries into the brand-new Words and Music Writing Competition! The Words and Music Festival, a twenty-year-strong writers’ conference, is now under the direction of One Book One New Orleans, and with that new direction is a brand-new competition, which The Peauxdunque Review has agreed to administer (with winners and runners-up guaranteed publication in the Review‘s pages). Click the link above for full information on how to enter into categories for short story, creative non-fiction, poetry, and short story by public high school students.
The Peauxdunque Review will launch its first issue in late summer 2018, with its second issue to come out in early 2019. Over the next few days, we will be continuing to put the final details in place on the website, but in the meantime, go over and “Like” the Peauxdunque Review ‘s Facebook page, and tell your friends!
No sooner did we report on the last round of Peauxdunque publication news, than two more wonderful items dropped in. April Blevins Pejic will have her creative non-fiction piece, “Clusters and the Cosmos,” published in Cimarron Review; and Drew Jordan‘s essay, “Pop’s Pocket Knife,” will be published by The Bitter Southerner! Both are beautiful pieces of work, so keep your eyes open for them.
This Saturday, March 3, Peauxdunque will join the list of featured presenters at the Jambalaya Writers’ Conference in Houma, Louisiana, put on by the Terrebonne Parish Library. Peauxdunquians on the roster include Marti Dumas and Maurice Carlos Ruffin. They join a number of luminaries, including Bill Loehfelm, Ladee Hubbard, Tom Piazza, James Nolan, Yuri Herrera, Katy Simpson Smith, Joshilyn Jackson, and R.L. Stine.
A new year, and new publication news by Peauxdunquians:
- Maurice Carlos Ruffin will shortly commence his stint as the nonfiction columnist for Virginia Quarterly Review, reviewing and essaying about current and recent nonfiction books. His first column will cover material from When They Call You a Terrorist, by Patrice Khan-Cullors and asha bandele; Political Tribes, by Amy Chua; and Armed in America, by Patrick Charles.
- Drew Jordan will have two poems published in the Summer 2018 issue of Still:The Journal.
- Tad Bartlett will have his short story, “Boone’s Farm from a Sprite Bottle,” published in Issue 234 of Crack the Spine.
- Andrew Kooy, in conjunction with the upcoming publication of his story, “Clap Your Hands,” by Apex, has also been selected for an author interview by Apex and for production of his story for Apex‘s podcast!
Always more news coming, so keep watching this space, and our Facebook page for links to web-content versions of these pieces as they go live.
Peauxdunque, despite its moniker, is a bustling place these days!
First up, tomorrow the Words and Music writers’ conference, put on by the Pirate’s Alley Faulkner Society, kicks off at the Hotel Monteleone in New Orleans. On the opening day, Thursday December 7, Tad Bartlett will chair a “Words and Music Writers Alliance” session at 3 p.m., featuring a remembrance of Peauxdunque founding member Terri Sue Shrum, and readings of new works by Peauxdunquians Emily Choate, J.Ed. Marston, Alex Johnson, and others. Please come join us, and stay for the rest of this excellent conference!
And last week featured two different recognitions of Peauxdunquians’ work by The New York Times! First, The New York Times Book Review featured a stellar review of The Best Women’s Travel Writing, Volume 11: True Stories from around the World, edited by Peauxdunquian Lavinia Spalding. “The latest book’s editor, Lavinia Spalding, hungry for travelers who ‘go with an open heart’ and have ‘the inclination to practice human kindness, a sincere intention to build pathways of understanding and a willingness to be transformed,’ read nearly 500 submissions before settling on the 31 stories that make up this diverse collection.” Then, the NYT featured “Kings of the Confederate Road,” the essay and photo feature collaboration by Tad Bartlett, Maurice Carlos Ruffin, and L. Kasimu Harris published by The Bitter Southerner, in its weekly “What We’re Reading” round-up.
On the grand old wireless contraption known as the radio, Peauxdunquian poet (and historian!) Cassie Pruyn was featured on NPR’s The Reading Life, discussing her brand new, just released lyrical history book, Bayou St. John: A Brief History. Cassie will also be reading and signing her newest book at Octavia Books on Sunday, December 10, at 2 p.m. (513 Octavia Street, NOLA).
Finally, there’s a slew of new publication news coming out of Peauxdunque for upcoming fiction and non-fiction: Tad‘s short story, “Porches,” will be published in January 2018 by Gris-Gris literary journal. Andrew Kooy has two upcoming publications: his short story “clap your hands” will run in an upcoming issue of Apex, and his nonfiction piece “George, WA” will run in the June 2018 issue of Bird’s Thumb. Finally, James Drew Jordan will see two of his stories–“The Man Who Played with Satchmo” and “Starland, Washington”–run in New South.
TONIGHT! Maurice Carlos Ruffin will interview Joel Dinerstein at Garden District Book Shop on Dinerstein’s book, The Origins of Cool in Postwar America. We certainly can’t think of a cooler fellow to conduct the interview. And the subject feels particularly fitting to Peauxdunque, too, as Dinerstein writes: “To be free and cool requires leaving one’s repressive hometown (or family) to seek a floating community of rebels.” We’re all leaving our personal podunks and striving for something greater and more communal, especially these days.
Also of note in Peauxdunque-land (and also speaking of cool), Andrew Kooy will see his short story, “Clap Your Hands,” published by Apex Magazine (which is currently at the top of Duotrope’s list of “most challenging fiction markets”). Andrew also recently received an Honorable Mention designation in the “Writers of the Future” competition!
Three Peauxdunquians are on the lists published by the Best American … series this year!
- Maurice Carlos Ruffin‘s short story, “The Children of New Orleans,” published by AGNI, has been listed as one of the 2016 “Distinguished Stories” in Best American Short Stories 2017. This is Maurice’s second-consecutive year with a story on that list.
- Maurice‘s essay, “Fine Dining in New Orleans,” published by Virginia Quarterly Review, has been included on the list of “Notable Essays and Creative Non-Fiction for 2016” in Best American Essays 2017. Joining Maurice on that list are Tad Bartlett‘s “My Time With You,” published by Chautauqua, and Tom Carson‘s “True Fakes on Location,” published by The Baffler.
Peauxdunquian Alex Johnson has joined the ranks of contributing writers at The Bitter Southerner, with his feature interview published yesterday with Georgia Congressman John Lewis and Congressman Lewis’s collaborator on the March trilogy of graphic memoirs, Andrew Aydin: “Good Trouble.” A deep and fascinating dive into the life of Congressman Lewis and the creative process behind March.
A lot happens when you neglect your website for too long. While I’ve been derelict in my duties, the citizens of the Peauxdunque nation have been busy out in the writing world.
First up, Emily Choate was named a 2017 Tennessee Williams Scholar for this year’s edition of the Sewanee Writers’ Conference. Great recognition for some great writing, including publications in Shenandoah, The Florida Review, Tupelo Quarterly, Chapter 16, Late Night Library, Yemassee, and elsewhere; and recent residency awards at the Virginia Center for Creative Arts and The Hambidge Center, among others. And even greater recognition for the work that’s coming.
L. Kasimu Harris has been showing up everywhere lately. On the publication front, Kasimu has started a series of food essays at The Bitter Southerner. His first two installments are “The Fried Green Tomatoes” and “How Mentors Season Our Lives.” His photography is also featured in the show, “Race and Revolution: Still Separate – Still Unequal,” which opened at Smack Mellon in New York City on June 24. He was also part of a feature in The New York Times entitled “Hot Links and Red Drinks: The Rich Food Tradition of Juneteenth.” Also one of this year’s Louisianians of the Year, and featured on an almost-uncountable, weekly deluge of articles, podcasts, and shows, Kasimu has been a force!
And y’all know Maurice Carlos Ruffin hasn’t been sitting still, either. On July 12, Maurice has been tapped to interview and moderate a reading by Roxane Gay, and her new memoir, Hunger. Originally set to take place at Octavia Books, the response has been so great that it’s been moved to the JCC at 5342 St. Charles Avenue, at 7 p.m. Buy a book to get in, and you won’t regret it! Details and RSVP here.
Y’all, I know I’m leaving stuff out. These are just the highlights, and there’s already more exciting news in the hopper that I’ll save for next week. But I’ll leave you with this pleasant picture from Oxford, Mississippi, where Peauxdunquians Tad Bartlett, J.Ed. Marston, Emily Choate, April Blevins Pejic, Ben Saxton, Susan Vallee, Andrew Siegrist, Drew Jordan, Larry Wormington, and Amy Conner gathered as part of the 2017 Yokshop Writers’ Conference:
A raft of new publications by Peauxdunque’s own have been launched recently, along with news of publications on the horizon:
- First, Cassie Pruyn‘s Walt McDonald First Boo Prize-winning book of poems, Lena, is out now from Texas Tech University Press. Writes Rachel Mennies in the foreword, “Pruyn lets us feel what lovers feel–the magnetism, the physicality, the tenderness, the rage, the wondering–with language both musical and visceral.” Room 220 will host a book release for Cassie at Saturn Bar on May 11 at 7 p.m., featuring readings by Cassie and by Ben Aleshire.
- Next up in publications just out, the incredible story, “Eufala,” by Emily Choate, is now out in the latest issue of Shenadoah:
My stepfather Des got famous, eventually. Fame of a particular stripe—for writing a handful of the most soul-throttling country songs of the seventies and eighties, for a drinking habit so dedicated that it verged on religious solemnity, and for the time my mother left him handcuffed to a tree, alone, for twenty-six hours.
The story of that ordeal was what mattered most. I heard Des tell it over and over—the heat of the day collapsing his throat, the sun moving across the sky, then the moon, then the sun again. At last the bending of sky and trees, ushering the visitation of fearsome beasts, heavenly creatures come to chasten and guide him.
If my mother were within earshot at this point in the story, she’d shrug off all the majesty: “It was the DTs.”
People ate that shit up.
We suspect y’all will eat up the rest of this story, as soon as you head over to Shenandoah to check it out.
- Zach Bartlett will have a new story, “Excerpts from the Diary of Theodore Miro, Competitor on CryptoChefs Season 2,” out in Mad Scientist Journal, in December 2017.
- Maurice Carlos Ruffin‘s story, “Beg Borrow Steal,” will be included in the anthology Mojo Rising, out from Sartoris Press in September 2017.
- Janis Turk‘s story, “Flight Path,” is in the anthology, Mending for Memory, out now by New Laurel Review Press.
- And Tad Bartlett‘s novella, Marchers’ Season, will see the world in print and e-book in 2018, as the L.A.-based literary journal Storylandia will devote a full issue to it.