Letter from the Editor


Dear Reader,

One of the downsides to running an online magazine—and to having a staff that is spread across the country—is that we never get to meet face to face, or experience the magazine in any physical way. That's one of the reasons it's always a pleasure to go the AWP conference every year, where we get to hang out with Collagist and Dzanc staff members, plus the great folks who run the other imprints. We also get to meet new contributors every year, reconnect with old ones, and talk to all the fantastic readers who come back to our site month after month. So thank you so much to everyone who stopped by the Dzanc table and said hello! It was a pleasure to see all of you, and I'm already looking forward to the next time we're all together in one room, several thousand strong.


As mentioned last month, we are now taking entries for the 2011 Collagist Chapbook Contest, the winner of which will be published by Dzanc Books later this year. We are open for entries until April 15th, with the winner announced in our May issue.

Please feel free to pass along the contest information to whoever you want, and if you have a manuscript you'd like to submit, please do! We've gotten a great number of entries already, and I can't wait to start the process of reading them, looking for our first great chapbook.

 For complete rules and the links to submit, please click here.


In April, Dzanc will host its National Workshop Day, also known as Dzanc Day. Consisting of dozens of creative writing workshops in almost as many cities, the event provides local, affordable two-to-four hour sessions led by professional writers, authors, and editors, all open to attendance by the public for a very affordable fee. Sessions are conducted in fiction, poetry, and non-fiction, and start at just $30 for two hours of instruction, a rate dramatically lower than many of our volunteers would normally charge. Information about individual locations and session descriptions can be found here:

In addition to being a great way for participants to receive instruction, get inspired, and meet other local writers, Dzanc Day also helps to partially fund our many charitable endeavors, including the Dzanc Prize, which recognizes one writer annually for both literary excellence and service to his or her community, and our Writer in Residence Program, which places professional writers into classrooms to provide creative writing instructions to public school students who could not otherwise afford the opportunity. It's thanks to our workshop leaders' generous donations of their time and talents that we're able to continue to support and grow these programs, and your signing up for Dzanc Day will ensure their success in the future.


Welcome to Issue Nineteen of The Collagist!

I want to first bring special attention to Mike Meginnis' essay "Angband, or His 55 Desires," which you'll notice opens in its own window, due to its special formatting. As much as the internet gives us the ability to create not just new texts but also new kinds of texts, that kind of innovation still an option perhaps too rarely explored. As much as I loved this essay for what it was as a work of prose, I was also very excited to see Mike's use of HTML and ASCII to create an essay that could not achieve its full effect in any other medium. It's definitely a unique piece of non-fiction, and I hope you'll enjoy it as much as I have.

Of course, that's not all we have for you this month!

Elsewhere in the issue, we've got new fiction from Corinna Vallianatos, Rhoads Stevens, Elizabeth Mikesch, and John Dermot Woods (whose three fictions also includes artwork by the author), as well as the largest novel excerpt section we've had in a while, with excerpts from four new novels: West of Here by Jonathan Evison, The Gospel of Anarchy by Justin Taylor, Miss Me When I'm Gone by Philip Stephens, and Whale Man by Alan Michael Parker.

Our poetry section includes new work by Gregory Pardlo, Tua Chaudhuri, Eric Morris, and Christian Gerard, and in book reviews you'll find coverage of Drain by Davis Schneiderman, Daddy's by Lindsay Hunter, Our Chrome Arms of Gymnasium by Crystal Curry, and Little Did I Know: Excerpts from Memory by Stanley Cavell.

As always, thanks to all of our contributors for letting us publish their fine work. Thanks also to everyone who reads the magazine, everyone who sends us submissions, and of course everyone who takes the time to post about the issue to their blogs, Facebook, or anywhere else. We appreciate your time and talents, and can't thank you enough for sharing them with us.


Matt Bell
The Collagist