We should support our local artists, whether they are writers, musicians, or painters. This is a sound philosophy, even if it is sometimes difficult to follow: we can only be so many places at once, afford so many babysitters, stay up late so many nights of the week. We’ve all been there, I’m sure. I want to support my friends’ band, but why are they playing at 9 p.m. on a Tuesday? That reading sounds great…let me find a sitter. However, we can read on our own time—how perfect! So buy some books and magazines and support your local artists. The following list will get you started.
For this post I’m focusing on our local writers and their works that have been published this year. What do I mean by local writer? I’m including those who currently live in Georgia, as well as those who have lived here in the past. Many writers have been to school and /or taught in Georgia, while many current Georgia writers have deep roots elsewhere.
Stephanie Perkins now resides in Asheville. I am super excited to read her debut YA novel, Anna and the French Kiss (Dutton) which comes out in December 2010. Her second book, Lola and the Boy Next Door is set to come out in the Fall of 2011. About Anna:
“Very sly. Very funny. Very romantic. You should date this book.”
— MAUREEN JOHNSON, NYT bestselling author of 13 Little Blue Envelopes and Scarlett Fever
Josh Russell gave us the fantastic Yellow Jack (W.W. Norton, 1999) and now My Bright Midnight, A True Story (LSU Press, 2010).
“I’ve been waiting for more of Josh Russell’s NOLA since Yellow Jack, waiting patiently, most of the time, and now it’s paid off. This book flat out kicks ass in its New Orleansness but also in its humanness, a novel firing on all cylinders, amazing characters, killer details, lyrical language and a plot that keeps the pages turning. A book worth the wait and worth its salt, a novel to read and reread, to savor, to treasure.”
—Tom Franklin, author of Hell at the Breech and Crooked Letter, Crooked Letter
Ben Spivey’s debut novel, Flowing in the Gossamer Fold, has received blurbs from Brian Evanson and Gary Lutz.
“Ben Spivey’s alluringly melodial debut novel of a marriage gone asunder unreels itself with the indisputable logic of dreams and delivers, along its phantasmagoric and dazing way, emotional clarities that feel entirely new.”
–Gary Lutz, author of Stories in the Worst Way and I Looked Alive
Much of this short fiction news is lifted from The New South’s Writing Workshop news page. Visit the site for more news.
Sonya McCoy Wilson published the “The Rigor Tree” in Diverse Voices Quarterly as well as “Brown Paper Bags” in TimBookTu (July 2010).
Karen Gentry’s story “Treasure Island,” which appeared originally in NÖO Jornal, has been selected for the Wigleaf Top 50 [Very] Short Fictions 2010.
John Holman’s story “Credentials” (which first appeared in Mississippi Review) has been reprinted in Fictionaut. Holman’s profile of the South’s best bird appears in the Oxford American‘s Best of the South 2010 (May ’10, Issue 69).
Josh Russell’s story “Young Woman Standing Before a Window” has been published in Epoch (Vol. 58, Number 3).
Dionne Irving’s story “Florida Lives” was a finalist for the Mid-American Review‘s 2009-2010 Sherwood Anderson Fiction Award.
Cheryl Stiles has published a work of creative nonfiction, “Systems Failure,” in Southern Women’s Review. This essay is part of a book length manuscript of essays entitled On Nelson Street.
If you have additional news, corrections, or links you’d like me to add, please leave the information in the comments section of this post. Thanks for reading.