Throughout the AWP Conference, we’re offering discounted prices at our table (1238). If you’re not able to attend this year’s conference in LA, we’ve still got you covered. You can get The Conium Review: Vol. 4 for just $10.00 (marked down from $12.00), and The Conium Review: Vol. 3 is only $5.00 (list price of $12.00). You can also pre-order Matt Tompkins’s Souvenirs and Other Stories for $10.00. There’s even free shipping for the duration of the conference! Get these great discounts through April 2nd in our online storefront.
The Conium Review: Vol. 4
This volume of The Conium Review features nine new stories from Emily Koon, Tamara K. Walker, Rita Bullwinkel, Marina Petrova, Kayla Pongrac, Ingrid Jendrzejewski, Zach Powers, and Theodora Ziolkowski. The pieces include a mix of flash fiction and short stories, each with a penchant for innovative characterization, bizarre settings, and other weirdness. You’ll discover a dictator in a jar, a modernized fairy tale, a person living as a Tinseltown extra, and more.
(List price for the Kindle edition is normally $5.99)
The Conium Review: Vol. 3
This volume of The Conium Review features eight new stories from Olivia Ciacci, Tom Howard, D. V. Klenak, Jan LaPerle, Zach Powers, Christine Texeira, and Meeah Williams. In these strange and surreal stories, you’ll find a company that sells knight-in-shining-armor-style happy endings, a boy with a second person trapped inside of him, a contemporary fable with a chickadee protagonist, and more. The pieces include flash fiction, short stories, and novella-length fiction.
(List price for the Kindle edition is normally $5.99)
A brief interview with Lindsay Hunter
and a preview of our 2016 AWP Conference panel: “What the Heck Does Innovative Fiction Actually Mean?: Authors Cut Through the Jargon”
Lindsay Hunter was originally slated to be on our AWP Conference panel, “What the Heck Does Innovative Fiction Actually Mean?: Authors Cut Through the Jargon,” but she had to drop out and Manuel Gonzales will be replacing her as a panelist. Fortunately, Lindsay was still able to answer some panelist questions for us. This chat gives a preview of what you might expect at the panel on Friday, April 1st, and it also gives Lindsay a chance to chime in on the topic for our online readers.
[James R. Gapinski]: So I have to ask the central question: what does innovative fiction actually mean? It seems like some cheesy buzzword, but can we define innovative fiction?
[Lindsay Hunter]: I think innovative fiction is something that surprises its readers. You know that feeling you get when you’re reading something and you think, “Man, I could never do this.” And then you think, “Man, I’m gonna go sit down right now and try to do that, or try to write something that makes me feel like reading that made me feel.” That’s innovative. It generates a chain of inspiration and creation.
[JRG]: When you’re writing a piece like “Don’t Kiss Me,” do you begin with the intentional goal of doing something formally unconventional, or is that something that just happens organically as you write?
[LH]: It’s very organic for me. I sit down and write the first line knocking around in my head, and then I write the next one and the next one. It’s all about the voice, the word selection that nourishes that voice. I don’t think, “Okay, I gotta write something truly f*cked up, GIDDY UP HUNTER, LET’S DO IT.” I think, “Hmm I wanna write about a woman who’s obsessed with another woman at work.” I think it’s unconventional because I’m trying to reveal something in these marginalized, sometimes hyper-real characters that I love so much. I’m trying to unveil some humanity whenever I can.
[JRG]: You’re judging our short fiction contest. I’m sure those interested in submitting are itching to know: are there specific things you look for in a great piece of innovative writing?
[LH]: I always find myself looking for an interesting turn of phrase. A quickness, a deftness between word and image. Something that makes me jealous! I’m also a sucker for anything that makes me feel nostalgic – either the character’s nostalgia or something sparked inside me.
[JRG]: Could you share some authors or books that you find particularly risky or innovative?
[LH]: Gutshot by Amelia Gray is like an opus of innovation. I think it’s perfect. Catherine Lacey’s Nobody is Ever Missing is another one. And Maryse Meijer’s forthcoming Heartbreaker burns it ALL down. Full disclosure, we all have the same editor. But that editor is a master of seeking out innovative, weird stuff!
Lindsay Hunter is the author of Ugly Girls (FSG Originals, 2014), which The Huffington Post called “a story that hits a note that’s been missing from the chorus of existing feminist literature.” Her next novel, working title Eat Only When You’re Hungry, is forthcoming from FSG. She is also the author of the flash fiction story collections Don’t Kiss Me (FSG Originals, 2013) and Daddy’s (Featherproof Books, 2010).
By now, hopefully you’ve heard about our AWP Conference panel, “What the Heck Does Innovative Fiction Actually Mean?: Authors Cut Through the Jargon,” taking place on Friday, April 1st at 3:00pm. The panel features Carmiel Banasky, Matt Bell, Ashley Farmer, and Manuel Gonzales. The Conium Review‘s managing editor, James R. Gapinski moderates.
The panelists have plenty of other events happening during AWP, and we hope you’ll attend a few other panelist readings, shindigs, etc.
Wednesday, March 30th, 2016 from 7:00pm to 9:00pm. Shipwreck SF Presents: The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes, a Literary Erotic Fanfiction Competition. Bootleg Theater, 2220 Beverly Blvd, Los Angeles, California 90057
Thursday, March 31st, 2016 from 7:00pm to 9:00pm. Why There Are Words visits LA. Continental Club, 116 West 4th St. Los Angeles 90013
Saturday, April 2nd, 2016 from 8:00pm to 10:00pm. Semiotext(e) and Friends. Los Angeles Contemporary Archive, 2245 E Washington Blvd, Los Angeles, California 90021
Thursday, March 31, 2016 from 1:30 pm to 2:45 pm. ASU & HFR: A Celebratory Reading. Robert Muroff Bookfair Stage, LA Convention Center, Exhibit Hall Level One
Friday, April 1, 2016 at 7:30pm. Boss Fight Books Presents: HEART-POUNDING PANIC. Stories Books & Cafe, 1716 W Sunset Blvd, Los Angeles, California 90026
Saturday, April 2, 2016 from 10:30 am to 11:45 am. What I Did When What I Did Wasn’t Working: Teachers on Retooling Their Teaching. Gold Salon 2, JW Marriott LA, 1st Floor
Saturday, April 2nd, 7:30pm. Books & Booze. Los Angeles Center of Photography, 1515 Wilcox Ave, Los Angeles, California 90028.
Friday, April 1, 2016 from 5:00pm to 7:00pm. AWP 2016 // LITERARY FOOLS RECEPTION: Solstice, Talking Writing, Juked, and Santa Monica Review. D’Vine Wine Cellar, 821 S Flower St, Los Angeles, California 90017
Friday, April 1, 2016 at 8:00pm. Two Dollar Radio, Civil Coping Mechanisms, Entropy, Action Books, and Writ Large Press @ These Days Gallery. Indian Alley, 118 Winston Pl, Los Angeles, California 90013
Saturday, April 2nd, 7:30pm. Books & Booze. Los Angeles Center of Photography, 1515 Wilcox Ave, Los Angeles, California 90028
Thursday, March 31, 2016 from 4:30 pm to 5:45 pm. It Ain’t What They Call You, It’s What You Answer To: Peeling Off Genre Labels. Room 502 B, LA Convention Center, Meeting Room Level
Saturday, April 2, 2016 from 4:30 pm to 5:45 pm. Speculative Fiction: Defining the Rules of a Rule-Breaking Genre. Room 402 AB, LA Convention Center, Meeting Room Level.
Over the past few weeks, we’ve been posting about and previewing different happenings at the upcoming AWP Conference in Los Angeles, including our panel, book signings, and recommendations from Rita Bullwinkel and Caitlin Scarano.
William VanDenBerg joins the conversation, offering his top AWP off-site event choices. Check out the list below, and be sure to stop by our table (#1238) for William’s author signing on Saturday, April 2nd, from 2:00pm to 3:00pm and hear him read during the Caketrain and Solar Luxuriance off-site reading on Saturday, April 2nd starting at 7:00pm.
Outside the AWP Conference itself, a multitude of readings, parties, and activities will be taking place. Here are a few highlights among the many offsite events:
March 29th, 7:30pm to 9:00pm
The Tuesday before AWP begins, tNY Press will be hosting a pre-show party at The Last Bookstore. Expect stand-up, lit karaoke, and Mad-Libs, as well as readings by Zachary Cosby, Bridget Dooley, Uzodinma Okehi, and more.
March 31st, 7:00pm
On Thursday at Monty Bar, Tumblr, Catapult, Unnamed Press, Writing Workshops Los Angeles and Nouvella Books will be teaming up for LAwp!, a party with free drinks and absolutely no readings whatsoever.
April 1st, 12:30pm to 10:00pm
Camp Real Pants, taking place at Astroetic Studios on Friday, features a summer camp experience compressed into a single day. Includes a publishing talk by editor Calvert Morgan, readings by Dark Fucking Wizard and Green Mountains Review authors, s’mores, singalongs, hot cocoa, and relatively little poison ivy.
April 1st, 4:00pm to 5:30pm
On Friday, Wave Books, POOL Poetry Journal, and Saint Mary’s College MFA will be celebrating some big anniversaries (10, 15, and 20 years respectively). The event, also at The Last Bookstore, will feature Molly Bendall, Candace Eros Díaz, Brenda Hillman, and others along with host Matthew Zapruder.
April 1st, 6:00pm to 8:00pm
At R Bar, a Koreatown karaoke bar, Bennington Review and Black Warrior Review will launch their most recent issues. This Friday night event includes Dorothea Lasky, Mark Baumer, Kendra Fortmeyer, and many others.
April 2nd, 7:00pm
On Saturday evening, The Poetic Research Bureau will host an event for Essay Press, Siglio Press, Ugly Duckling Presse, and Dorothy: A Publishing Project. Features readings from Amina Cain, Will Alexander, and work by John Cage read by Richard Kraft and Joe Biel.