Do you have a quote you can bring to mind, or have found recently – I won’t ask for a favourite – but something that you find incredibly precise or beautiful in its attention to language? Or where the ideas stir you and seem the best articulation of something you’d perhaps never thought to think?
I want to quote here from Heroines. Specifically, towards the close of the book, where she utters part rallying cry, part acknowledgement to the community of writers online, part kick, part song to being thin skinned and writing despite lack of recognition.
I want just to say, I felt it all.
“I’m tired of trying to hurl my girl-body against the great unfeeling fortress of academia and old-guard literary publishing”
“In a way this subculture of literary blogs, fluid, amorphous, non-hierarchical, functions as a community of solidarity, privately and publically – fighting against feelings of illegitimacy and invisibility, of feeling like ghosts in the physical world”
“We cannot wait around to be discovered. If you can’t write masterpieces, why write? the doctors said to Zelda [Fitzgerald].”
I would quote it all. I can’t. But I think of light, when I put this down.
How the internet is light broken up and reformed, broadcast in pixels, in beams. How the internet is a trembling net of light across the world. Marvel. How words on the internet and in books are tiny darknesses printed on white. Of the smallness of words that have traveled a long way, visible, invisible, here and now, gone, shared. And I am thankful for how much good writing there is still left to transmit and cheer, from one place to another.
Boundaries, thresholds, doorways. Space, hybrids, dichotomies, taboos. The girl, the woman. The wilderness, the city. I’ve been interested for a long time in these points of tangent and overlap and crossing which appear in literature. Now I’ve had the idea to host an literary reading along these themes.
This is a call for entries.
This is an address to you, for your writing to be broadcast online some time around the end of June. All you need to join in is a webcam and writing that you feel fits this broad theme.
How it will work – my friend A has video editing skills, and has agreed to help me put together our show. What I’d like is to have enough entries to select about 40-60 minutes of readings. I’ll then broadcast the show on either Livestream or Youtube at a time when hopefully most people in the West at least will be able to watch it live. This date will be announced nearer the time. I already have one writer down, and I’m very excited to see others join. This will hopefully be just as well-viewed (and as good as) an evening of fiction/poetry in person. There may be a chat function, there most certainly will be a video put up afterwards. Of course, no free wine- BYOB, or whatever you’d like. And snacks.
Interested in submitting? I think the best way to submit would be to upload a short (5 minutes max) recording of a reading of your work to Youtube – you can make this private (i.e., don’t upload to the general stream – here’s how to do that, if unsure) and send me a private link. My address is: wheresthebread[at]hotmail.com. If you have any queries leave a comment below or email me.
If you’d like to submit something in another language, please feel free to do so – providing a transcript in English (so we can sub). I think it would be nice if in the reading you presented it as if giving a reading in person – however you feel that applies to you.
The deadline for submissions is the 24th of June. I can’t wait to start seeing what you come up with.