Call :: Chestnut Review Seeking Stubborn Artists for Winter 2023 Issue

That’s right. As of July 1, literary magazine Chestnut Review began accepting work for their Winter 2023. You have until September 30 to submit poetry, fiction, nonfiction, art, and photography. No fee for shorter works; $5 fee for longer works. They are a paying market! Stop by their ad in the NewPages Classifieds to learn more.

New Book :: The Plea

The Plea The True Story of Young Wesley Elkins and His Struggle for Redemption by Patricia L. Bryan and Thomas Wolf published by University of Iowa Press book cover image

The Plea: The True Story of Young Wesley Elkins and his Struggle for Redemption
American History / True Crime by Patricia L. Bryan and Thomas Wolf
University of Iowa Press, July 2022

On a moonlit night in 1889, Iowa farmer John Elkins and his young wife, Hattie, were brutally murdered in their bed. Eight days later, their son, eleven-year-old Wesley Elkins, was arrested and charged with murder. The community reeled with shock by both the gruesome details of the homicides and the knowledge of the accused perpetrator—a small, quiet boy weighing just seventy-five pounds. Accessible and fast-moving, The Plea delivers a complete, complex, and nuanced narrative of this horrific crime, while shedding light on the legal, social, and political environment of Iowa and the country in the late 1800s and early 1900s. Bryan and Wolf also coauthored of Midnight Assassin: A Murder in Amer­ica’s Heartland (Iowa, 2007). Both reside in Chapel Hill, North Carolina.

Book Review :: The Book of Form and Emptiness by Ruth Ozeki

The Book of Form and Emptiness by Ruth Ozeki book cover image

Guest Post by Kevin Brown

Readers should know something going into Ozeki’s novel: inanimate objects talk to the main character, Benny Oh. One of those items is the book the reader is reading and that Benny is writing, more or less. If you can’t get past that technique, this book isn’t for you, as it’s central to the novel. Benny might be crazy, but he might also simply be seeing more of the world than other people; Ozeki leaves that up to the reader, as it’s a question she believes is worth exploring. Benny struggles with it himself, as does everybody around him, and there is a colorful cast of characters he interacts with. Ozeki tangentially explores a number of relevant social issues, ranging from climate change to consumerism, but she mainly seems interested in how we relate to the universe and those around us. Thus, she uses a variety of characters to explore the things (the actual stuff) that make up our world and our relationships with it, whether we horde them or seek to order them. As a Buddhist, Ozeki believes the world is more alive than most of us would admit and that we are one with it, whether we want to be or not. Most of us just aren’t listening closely enough.


The Book of Form and Emptiness by Ruth Ozeki. Viking, September 2021; Penguin, June 2022.

Reviewer bio: Kevin Brown has published three books of poetry: Liturgical Calendar: Poems (Wipf and Stock); A Lexicon of Lost Words (winner of the Violet Reed Haas Prize for Poetry, Snake Nation Press); and Exit Lines (Plain View Press). He also has a memoir, Another Way: Finding Faith, Then Finding It Again, and a book of scholarship, They Love to Tell the Stories: Five Contemporary Novelists Take on the Gospels. Twitter @kevinbrownwrite or kevinbrownwrites.weebly.com/.

If you are interested in contributing a Guest Post to “What I’m Reading,” please click this link: NewPages.com Reviewer Guidelines.

Magazine Stand :: The Georgia Review – Summer 2022

The Georgia Review literary magazine Summer 2022 issue cover image

The Georgia Review’s Summer 2022 issue is now available and opens with commentary from Editor Gerald Maa, who writes, “I see a literary journal as a means by which to make public, momentary space for collectives to continue, start, or transform work they have been or want to be doing. Mourning, and celebrating, a life just passed is collective work, when done at its best.” Maa’s comments come after discussing the untimely passing of April Freely whose work is honored in the feature, “Correspondent Life: April Freely (1982-2021) Poems and Annotations” and includes works by Jennifer S. Cheng and Spring Ulmer.

Included in this issue is new writing from Samuel R. Delany, Alejandro Varela, Pamela Mordecai, Marylyn Tan, Bennett Sims, and many more, as well as a new translation of a poem by Bertolt Brecht, a reconsideration of Law & Order: Special Victims Unit, and a portfolio of experimental photography by Daisuke Yokota. Maa also shares that the magazine’s online component, GR2, now features “Questions for Contributors” in which writers offer responses to five questions to “give readers a glimpse of what editorial exchange with our editors can look like.” Melanie P. Moore, Lio Rios, Nishanth Injam, and Aryn Kyle take the first plunge.

New Book :: Taxonomies

Taxonomies Poetry by Erin Murphy book cover image

Taxonomies
Poetry by Erin Murphy
Word Poetry, April 2022

The demi-sonnets in Erin Murphy’s Taxonomies categorize elements of the human experience that defy simple classification. In this form of her own invention, Murphy holds a magnifying glass to issues of gender, aging, relationships, and social justice. Erin Murphy is the author or editor of thirteen books and has received numerous awards. In April 2022, she was named Poet Laureate of Blair County, Pennsylvania. She received her MFA from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, and is Professor of English and creative writing at the Pennsylvania State University, Altoona College. Read sample poems here.

New Book :: My Aunt’s Abortion

My Aunt's Abortion poetry and narrative memoir by Jane Rosenberg LaForge published by BlazeVOX book cover image

My Aunt’s Abortion
Poetry / Narrative Memoir by Jane Rosenberg LaForge
BlazeVOX, February 2023

My Aunt’s Abortion is a series of poems and two essays that detail the effects of an illegal abortion the author’s aunt underwent in 1960’s California. Part cautionary tale and part retrospective, the essays recall family life before and after the abortion; the poems provide the perspective of the young girl who witnessed her aunt’s recovery from a mysterious disease and the disintegration of her parents’ marriage. Together, the poems and essays evoke a period of loss and shame that will likely return with the overturning of Roe v. Wade. Sample pages can be read on the publisher’s website. Jane Rosenberg LaForge is the author of three previous collections of poetry; four chapbooks; a memoir; and two novels. Her 2018 novel, The Hawkman: A Fairy Tale of the Great War (Amberjack Publishing), was a finalist in two categories in the Eric Hoffer awards. Her 2021 novel, Sisterhood of the Infamous (New Meridian Arts Press), was a finalist in the National Indie Excellence Awards in regional fiction (west). A reviewer for American Book Review, she reads poetry for COUNTERCLOCK literary magazine and has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize and the Best of the Net.

Magazine Stand :: Kenyon Review – July/August 2022

The Kenyon Review literary magazine July August 2022 issue cover image

The Climate Issue of the Kenyon Review includes a folio called “Angry Mamas,” guest edited by Emily Raboteau, featuring essays, stories, and poems by mothers discussing the climate crisis and environmental justice. The folio contains contributions from writers around the world, including Humera Afridi, Aliyeh Ataei, Camille T. Dungy, Patricia Engel, Genevieve Guenther, Anya Kamenetz, Debora Kuan, Cleyvis Natera, Deborah Paredez, and Sadia Quraeshi Shepard. In the rest of the issue, readers will find climate-themed work by Samuel Amadon, Mary Kuryla, Diane Mehta, Michael Metivier, Genta Nishku, Jane Wong, and many others.

Magazine Review :: Crazyhorse Spring 2022

Crazyhorse literary magazine Spring 2022 issue cover image

Guest Post by Cindy Dale

It gets expensive entering contests. So, I love it when a journal includes a copy of the contest issue with the entrance fee. Case in point: Crazyhorse. No, I didn’t win, but the College of Charleston’s Crazyhorse includes a year’s subscription with your entry fee. From the very first story, Marian Crotty’s “Near Strangers,” I was hooked. Crotty masterfully interweaves the story of Betsy’s evening as a hospital volunteer assisting a rape victim with the story of her own fractured relationship with her gay son. Pair this story with Daniel Garcia’s unsettling poem about abuse, “What I’m Trying to Say Is.” Kris Willcox’s “In May” considers the long arc of a woman’s life concluding with, “It’s not the things that matter to me. It’s the choices over what to keep, and what to throw away.” The story closes with the narrator quietly feeding a handful of old sequestered photos into the fire pit. I found myself thinking about old photos again with Gregory Dunne’s poem “Quiet Blizzard.” The Crazyhorse Spring 2022 issue is 165 beautiful pages of an astounding range of fiction, nonfiction, and poetry. This is an issue to be slowly savored by readers all summer long, and for writers, the Crazyhorse Prizes in Fiction, Nonfiction, and Poetry open to submissions January 1-31 each year.


Reviewer bio: Cindy Dale has published over twenty short stories in literary journals and anthologies. She lives on a barrier beach off the coast of Long Island.

If you are interested in contributing a Guest Post to “What I’m Reading,” please click this link: NewPages.com Reviewer Guidelines.

Call :: Cherry Tree Now Open for Submissions

Cherry Tree: A National Literary Journal is open to submissions for its next issue through October 1, 2022. They want to read your fiction, poetry, and creative nonfiction. The $3 reading fee helps them to pay contributors and 10% of those fees will be donated to Minary’s Dream Alliance, a community nonprofit with strong mentorship programs for at-risk youth. The editors will make a matching donation.

Stop by their ad in the NewPages Classifieds to learn more.