Katie Schmid Wins the Turnbuckle Chapbook Contest!

Katie Schmid Cigarettes Web

Photo by Aaron Ottis Photography

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Though Split Lip Press does not condone or promote smoking cigarettes, take a look at this pic of Katie Schmid, winning author of our Turnbuckle Chapbook Contest with her manuscript Forget Me / Hit Me / Let Me Drink Great Quantities of Clear, Evil Liquor. Such a cool photo, but even cooler, her book tentatively forthcoming sometime in late summer. Stand by for the official release date announcement.

Though a tough decision, our guest judge Meg Pokrass selected Katie’s manuscript as winner, finding it original and expansive in its entirety, and I concur. The collection is diversified with regards to both content and form. Her poetics are delicious, and she is astute in discerning the form that will serve a given poem best, ranging from those only in line, others broken in stanzas of different lengths, others with some long lines / some short lines, others as prose poems, some formatted with text aligned to the right or centered, and my favorite part, her series in the middle called “Daughter Psalms,” which are not individually titled pieces, just blocks of text unified by the series’ title placed mid-page on each page of the section. Another cool part is a series of prose poems titled “The Boys of the Midwest,” followed by a number as per the order they appear in. And, most importantly, the quality of her writing is masterful and striking––full of risk, balanced and tasteful shifts in diction choices, daring syntactical moves, and a touch of wit within otherwise dark, haunting poems––how, at times, such wit serves as a stepping stone to begin a lineage of rising tension as seen in “Some Brief Information About the Spartans”––

Boys pay tribute to Saint Jude: patron saint of dollar single cigarettes from the bar, patron saint of working a double at the granite factory, patron saint of watching the bitter candle of your father going to hell.

Dear god, the escalation: a gritty denotation of the Saint Jude figure.

And then how she manages to personify her narrators and characters with such a high degree of verisimilitude. It fascinates me, like this passage in “Letter to the Midwest”––

I too, am afraid that I can never escape:

these cracked sidewalks, the empty storefronts

like raw wounds, the fair weather drunks

who lie in doorframes with their abandoned

bodies in a puddle of vomit. And me:

I wake to find myself scuffed, badly bruised,

like a peach your thumb could sink into

with the lightest touch.

Beautifully tragic in my opinion.

So, that’s the skinny on our winner Katie Schmid, but let’s give props to those contestants who wound up finalists:

In the Valley of the Sun by Gleah Powers

The Prophetic Western by Meredith McDonough

11:58 by Ann Stewart McBee

PERSONA: Noun, Feminine, Singular by Carolyn Moore

Sleepstart by Heikki Huotari

Stranger Underneath by Trish Hopkinson

American Spirits by Jackson Burgess

Take Me Home by Sarah Levine

Tiger Laughs When You Push by Ruth Lehrer

Velocity by Martha Clarkson

Winter & Construction: Michigan Stories by Matthew Fogarty

Rock n Roll, Split Lip fans. We appreciate your support and look forward to bringing you Katie’s book Forget Me / Hit Me / Let Me Drink Great Quantities of Clear, Evil Liquor this coming summer.

 

 

 

 

 

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Split Lip Sunday Night Rumble (on a Monday, again), February 16

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image via Jayme Cawthern

Eventually, I am sure that I will be sitting down to write one of these on a Sunday night, but last night was my 33rd birthday, and I was a little incapacitated (by wine and exhaustion).  So here I am, on a freezing cold President’s Day that is not a three-day weekend at my house (or, rather, it is a three day weekend for my oldest child, which means she’s home, which means I don’t get any time to myself, except these few stolen moments at the computer when she’s playing quietly).

Maybe you’re just hanging out today, avoiding chapped-cheek-and-lip-weather. Maybe you need something to read.  Look no further:

New Issues

-Atticus Review’s Love Stinks issue came out last week and it’s really good (and I don’t just say that because I have a short story in it!).

-It’s not a new issue, per se, but Lockjaw Magazine has an awesome Choose Your Own Adventure project going on, which just launched yesterday.

Contributors Kicking Ass

-Jared Yates Sexton kills it yet again, with a story from his collection featured over at the Good Men Project (previously printed in PANK). Punch-for-Punch happens to be one of this editor’s favorites, so I’m thrilled to see it out in the world.

-Split Lip Press author Julia Kolchinsky Dasbach’s poem, “The Secret to Remembering” is featured over at the Sundress Publications’ blog, The Wardrobe, in this week’s Best Dressed.

Stories I Loved

It was actually pretty fortuitous that I waited to post this today because I fell in love with a story and can’t get out. Go, read Susannah Felt’s piece “Map” at Smokelong Quarterly.

Stay warm–and well-read,

AKM

Split Lip Monday Night Rumble, February 9

On Saturday, I reminded myself that I needed to write a Sunday Night Rumble post, but between a freelance deadline and my really terrible organization skills, I forgot.

So here we are, rumbling on a Monday night, which isn’t so bad because Mondays traditionally suck. But at least now you’ll have some great things to read.

 

New Issues

Hippocampus Magazine is a fairly new-ish destination for short creative non-fiction. Their new issue went live February 1st and includes a piece by yours truly (my first published CNF piece, so I feel like I’m allowed to humblebrag a bit).

 

Contributors Killin’ It

Jared Yates Sexton isn’t just a contributor–he’s also the author of Split Lip Press’s first full-length collection, The Hook and the Haymaker.  He has a great story over at Juked right now, and you can check out the first review of his collection over at Alternating Currents (thank you to Al Kratz for reading and seeing all the good in it that we saw).

 

Stories I Loved

Two Hurts by K Brattin  at Wigleaf

Tell Me What to Do by Kerry Cullen at Luna Luna Magazine (I may be a little biased, but still. Read it.)

 

Rumor has it that it’s National Pizza Day (I know that for some of you out there, it’s every day), and I have a couple pies on the way. Hope your evening is as delicious/fraught with heartburn/etc.

-AKM

Split Lip Sunday Night Rumble, February 1st

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Editor’s Note:  In the spirit of literary citizenship (and the cheesy title I just thought of for this series), I’m going to be rounding up some weekly favorites from around the web here on the blog.

Happy Super Bowl (some roman numerals) to you all! We don’t have cable because we’re poor, and we also don’t have cool friends who have fun parties, so here I am, on Sunday night, writing a blog that likely no one will be reading.

But maybe you’ll catch it during your Monday morning crockpot-dip hangover.

New Issues

Our friends at Noble/Gas Quarterly released their second, super-stellar issue. Check it out here.

Contributors Killin’ It

Loved and lol’ed at (Issue 7) Tabitha Blankenbiller’s Guy Fieri fanfiction (oh yes she did) over at The Mondegreen (who also released a killer inaugural issue a few weeks ago).

(Note to previous contributors: I try to keep track of you on Twitter, but it’s hard–especially since some of you don’t even use Twitter! If you have news or pubs to share, please feel free to email so I can include them here.)

New Magazines

The inaugural issue of THIS. Magazine blew me away. Gorgeous design, even more gorgeous work. I especially liked Shasta Grant’s piece “Don’t Ever Change.”

Story I Loved

“I Knew I Loved You” by Claire Comstock-Gay in the newest issue of Midnight Breakfast.

Happy reading!

-AKM

IMAGE via FLICKR