Apr/May 2007

Tom Dooley co-founded Eclectica in 1996 and serves as its Managing Editor. In the 12 years between earning a BA in English literature from the University of Chicago and a MPA in municipal management from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, he taught middle and high school English in Alaska, Arizona, and Wisconsin, amassing fond memories, dubious experiences, and debt. Two careers post-teaching later, he now creates spreadsheets and PowerPoint slides for the man by day, edits Eclectica by night, and feels very grateful for the blessings he has received—chief among them being married to the sweetest gal and the best poet he knows. He and said gal reside in Albuquerque, New Mexico, with enough rescued lapdogs to field a diminutive Iditarod racing team and the empty-nest echoes of two amazing Haitian-American children who have flown the coop.

Paul Sampson is Eclectica's Nonfiction and Miscellany Editor and has been a regular contributor to the Salon. A professional writer and editor for many years, he worked until recently for a mammoth corporation. He has since been downsized, although he remains the same height and weight as formerly. Some of his essays and poems have been published in Image, The Alsop Review, The 2River View, Illya's Honey, The Sulphur River Literary Review, the British publication World Wide Writers II, and the anthology Best Texas Writing (Rancho Loco Press). He lives on the outskirts of a small town east of Dallas, Texas.

Colleen Mondor is Eclectica's Review Editor. She also reviews for Bookslut, the Voices of NOLA, and Booklist. Short story excerpts from her novel on Alaskan aviation have recently appeared in failbetter and Storyglossia. She maintains a daily blog on all things literary (and sometimes not) at her site, Chasingray.com.

Elizabeth P. Glixman is Eclectica's Interview Editor. Her fiction and poetry have appeared online and in print in Wicked Alice, In Posse Review, 3 A.M. Magazine, Tough Times Companion, a publication of The Virginia Foundation for the Humanities, Her Circle Ezine, Frigg, and Velvet Avalanche, an anthology of erotic poetry. Besides Eclectica, her author interviews, articles, book reviews, and creative non-fiction pieces have appeared in The Pedestal Magazine, Whole Life Times, Spirit of Change, Hadassah Magazine, and the anthologies Chocolate for A Woman's Soul II and Cup of Comfort For Women. She is the author of three poetry chapbooks: A White Girl Lynching (Pudding House Publications, 2008), Cowboy Writes a Letter & Other Love Poems (Pudding House Publications, 2010), and The Wonder of It All (Alternating Current, 2012). Elizabeth's story, "Mother's Bony Behind," was chosen one of the notable online stories of 2006 by the Million Writers Award. Elizabeth is an animal lover, and she has a blog devoted to shelter animals, especially those at kill shelters.

Jennifer Finstrom has been the Poetry Editor of Eclectica since the fall issue of 2005. This is her final issue in that capacity. A former Spotlight Author, she teaches in the First-Year Writing Program, tutors in writing, and facilitates writing groups at DePaul University. Recent publications include Autumn Sky Poetry Daily, Escape Into Life, Gingerbread House Literary Magazine, and NEAT. For Silver Birch Press, she has work appearing in The Great Gatsby Anthology, the Alice in Wonderland Anthology, and in Ides: A Collection of Poetry Chapbooks.

Pamela Mackey is Eclectica's Copy Editor. She teaches English at a community college in central New York. Earlier in her career, she wrote feature stories for newspapers, including The New York Times. Even earlier, she was a researcher and editor in the magazine industry, holding staff positions at LOOK and Saturday Review magazines. She writes poetry and is the mother of a gifted young novelist.

Arlene Ang lives in Spinea, Italy. She is the author of The Desecration of Doves (iUniverse, 2005). This is her eleventh appearance in Eclectica. She has also appeared or is forthcoming in Forklift Ohio, In Posse Review, Stand Magazine, and Unpleasant Event Schedule. She is the recipient of The 2006 Frogmore Poetry Prize and serves as a poetry editor for The Pedestal Magazine.

Mark Baumer sleeps in a room where there is a can of sardines on the shelf "In case of emergency." Last summer Mark and a friend hitchhiked from Maine to California. Mark carried a can of tuna and a can of kidney beans from St. Louis to San Francisco, "In case we were in a place and there was nothing else to eat." In San Francisco Mark gave the cans to a guy sitting on a wall. He didn't ask if the man was hungry or if he had a can opener. "Take your Mustache and Leave" is Mark's first published work. He is incapable of growing a mustache.

Bob Bradshaw is a programmer living in Redwood City, CA. He is a huge fan of the Rolling Stones. Recent and forthcoming work of his can be found at Eclectica, Juked, Not Just Air, Orange Room Review, Flutter, and Blue Fifth Review.

Jared Carter lives in Indianapolis. His fourth collection of poems, Cross this Bridge at a Walk, was published in 2006 by Wind Publications in Kentucky. Additional work may be found on his website.

Benjamin Chambers is founder of the award-winning online journal, The King’s English, which specializes in novella-length fiction. Educated at the University of Chicago and Washington University in St. Louis, he’s taught fiction writing in several places around the country, and served at one time as fiction editor at The Chicago Review. His fiction has or will appear in The Iowa Review, ZYZZYVA, MANOA, The Mississippi Review, William & Mary Review, American Foreign Service Journal, Portland Review, online at Word Riot, and several other journals. Essays have appeared in Cream City Review and in Word Riot. He lives with his wife and two dogs in Portland, Oregon, where he works in the county juvenile justice system. His project is responsible for the "When You Were 15" campaign, designed to encourage adults to mentor youth in the justice system. About "In Grief Prostrate; Clobbered by Joy": "I wrote this novella immediately after I read J. P. Donleavy’s A Fairy Tale of New York. It wasn’t the first book of his I’d read, but it was the first one where I realized that he consistently indulged in a heavy dose of sadness and manic humor in all his fiction, and I wanted to see how he did it--hence, the title and theme of this piece, the struggle between grief and joy. Later, when I read Efforts at Truth, Nicholas Mosley’s autobiography, I saw why Donleavy interested me. One of the things I appreciate about Mosley is present in Donleavy: they both love paradox. For example, good and evil always coexist and to some extent depend on each other--in the same way, as in this story, one can both mourn a tragic loss and see possibilities in freedom. Far from being despicable, it’s simply human. Mosley would say it makes us clownish, but that it’s a good thing, because it may be only that way do we learn.

Erie Chapman is editor of The National Literary Review and heads a charitable foundation in Nashville, Tennessee. His poetry has been published in various journals including Millers Pond, The Aurora Review and Eclectica (v10n2). He has composed music for three CDs and two documentary films, and one of his songs was recently published by Curb Records. He also recently published a play, Who Loves Judas, which will be produced this fall, 2007, in Nashville. About "Stradivarius," he writes, "The poem is a meditation on how we fine-tune our hearts to hear each other's suffering."

Matthew Cheney has published fiction and nonfiction in One Story, Locus, Rain Taxi, SF Site, and Fantasy Magazine. He is a regular columnist for the webzine Strange Horizons and the series editor for Best American Fantasy, a new anthology series from Prime Books. His weblog was nominated for a World Fantasy Award in 2005.

Andrew Coburn lives in Andover, Massachusetts. He has written 12 novels, three made into French films. His work has been translated into 13 languages. He recently returned to writing short stories. "Gemma" was inspired by a lovely woman with a classically beautiful Roman nose.

Barbara De Franceschi is an Australian poet who lives in Broken Hill, a small mining town in outback New South Wales. When not writing poetry or committed to family and business, Barbara involves herself in community work. She was awarded the Order of Australia Medal in 2002 for her achievements in the area of multiculturalism. Her poetry has appeared in various literary journals Australia-wide and online in the USA and Switzerland. Barbara is an adventuress writer who is continuously trying to find new ways and forms to present her work; she has experimented with sound and musical composition to enhance her recitals, with stimulating results. Her first collection, Lavender Blood, was published in 2004, and the manuscript for a second collection is well under way. Barbara is a member of the performance group "The Silver Tongued Ferals" and performs at caravan parks, arts festivals, etc., and has read her poetry live to air on ABC Radio on a number of occasions.

Anna Madsen Fogel is a veterinary nurse at a large animal hospital in Kennett Square, PA. She works with horses, cows, and a variety of other farm animals. She lives in Philadelphia with her husband, three cats, and a dog.

D.E. Fredd lives in Townsend, Massachusetts. He has had fiction, poetry, and essays published in over sixty journals and reviews. He received the Theodore Hoepfner Award given by the Southern Humanities Review for the best short fiction of 2005, was a 2006 Ontario Award Finalist, and recently received a 2007 Pushcart Special Mention Award. His novel Exiled to Moab will debut in the Spring of 2007.

Michael Gustie has recently appeared in the Santa Clara Review, Wicked Alice, and Zygote in My Coffee. He is an MFA candidate at Oregon State University in rain-drenched Corvallis, where he also teaches composition.

Jane Halpert lives in New York City, where she is working on her doctoral degree in English. Her field is Early American literature, though lately she has been reading and enjoying Renaissance anatomy books and midwiferies. She grew up in a very large family and worries a lot about animals.

William Reese Hamilton lives in Choroní, a small fishing village on the Venezuelan coast, backed up against a mountainous rain forest, in a region that produces the finest cacao in the world. His stories have appeared in The Paris Review, The North American Review, Puerto del Sol, Night Train Magazine, Ink Pot/Lit Pot, Smokelong Quarterly, and elsewhere. He says, "Venezuela has terrific variety, from the Andes Mountains,to the Llanos plains and the swampy Orinoco Delta beyond. The Upper Orinoco is as primitive a place as any outside certain parts of Africa and Asia. In the isolation of jungle outposts, news comes late and sketchy from other distant outposts. That is part of what lures us to places like Platanal and the little port I am currently writing from, Maroa, a tiny port on Rio Guainia, whose dark waters run into Rio Negro and on down to the mighty Amazon."

Sir John Hargrave is the "King of Dot-Comedy" and the editor-in-chief of ZUG, the world's oldest humor Web site. His comedy work has been featured in The New York Times, USA Today, Entertainment Weekly, the Boston Globe, and BusinessWeek. He has made appearances on Comedy Central, The Tonight Show With Jay Leno, MSNBC, TechTV, and the BBC, and he is a frequent speaker at technology conferences and wacky morning radio shows across the nation.

Tim Horvath is the Poetry Editor for Entelechy: Mind and Culture. He will soon complete the MFA program at the University of New Hampshire and is revising his first novel. His stories won the 2006 Raymond Carver Award and the 2006 prize of the Society for the Study of the Short Story, and he has been published or is forthcoming in Carve, Cranky, pacificREVIEW, the Abiko Annual, Seventh Quark, Sein und Werden, SleepingFish, and Drumlummon Views. He has contracted a fascination with science, particularly neuroscience, that appears to be incurable. Although an outspoken proponent of first-hand research, he didn't sustain a single rhino charge in the writing of "Rhino of the Real." He did, however, talk with rhinoceros expert Mike Kreger at the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, whose help was invaluable; any errors that remain, of course, are Tim's.

Thomas J. Hubschman is a regular contributor to Eclectica's Salon, the author of the novel Billy Boy (Savvy Press), and the publisher of Gowanus, an ezine for authors in and from the so-called Third World. He is also editor of The Best of Gowanus: New Writing from Africa, Asia and the Caribbean (Gowanus Books). His short stories, articles and reviews have appeared in The Blue Moon Review, Morpo Review, New York Press, on the BBC World Service and in numerous other print and online publications.

Niranjana Iyer is a writer from Ottawa, Canada, whose work has appeared in The Missouri Review, The Smithsonian Magazine, and SmokeLong Quarterly, amongst other venues. Her blog is called "Brown Paper" (see link).

KOB ONE is an artist of many mediums, including graffiti. He has been doing graphic design for a living for 12 years and producing hip hop beatz for nine under the name Scorpioflo. Originally from Fayetteville, NC, he moved to Albuquerque, NM, in 2002. He is married with a son and claims to be 30 years young.

Deborah P. Kolodji works in information technology to fund her poetry obsessions and to pay for her children's ever-increasing college tuition. She is a member of the Haiku Society of America and the Science Fiction Poetry Association. Her work has appeared in Modern Haiku, Frogpond, bottle rockets, The Heron's Nest, Electica, FireWeed, The Red Moon Anthology, Gin Bender Review, Strange Horizons, Star*Line, St. Anthony Messenger Magazine, and many other places, both on and off the web. She is one of four winners of the 2004-2005 Virgil Hutton Haiku Memorial Award Chapbook Contest for her winning manuscript, Seaside Moon, published by Saki Press. Kolodji is one of 17 haiku poets included in The New Resonance 4: Emerging Voices in English Language Haiku by Red Moon Press. She moderates the Yahoo e-list CinquainPoets, and is the Editor of Amaze: The Cinquain Journal.

Don Mager has published poems and translations from German, Russian, and Czech since 1960. His books are To Track The Wounded One (1987), Glosses (1992), Borderings (1996), That Which is Owed to Death (1996), Good Turns (1999), and The Elegance of the Ungraspable (2001). He also wrote the libretto for Marc Satterwhite’s three act opera Akhmatova. He teaches and lives in Charlotte, NC.

Scott Malby lives and writes from Coos Bay, Oregon.

Sally Molini has appeared in or is forthcoming in 32 Poems, Southern Poetry Review, Calyx, Best New Poets, Margie, the Chattahoochee Review, and elsewhere. Online journals include Mad Hatters' Review, Tattoo Highway, Boxcar Poetry Review, among others. She is a graduate of Warren Wilson College's MFA Program and lives in Nebraska.

Bojan Pavlovic is a Canadian author with roots in Bosnia-Hercegovina. He was born in Sarajevo, former Yugoslavia, in 1979, and immigrated to Canada in 1992, where he now lives and works in Toronto. He has written a number of short story collections and poetry compilations. Most of his works deal with themes of history and historicity, the role of myth in national consciousness, topics of nationalism, of war and of identity. His first novel, Newcomers, Temporaries, was published in 2006. He has won a number of literary awards, and has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize in 2004 and 2005 for his short-story work.

Gilbert Wesley Purdy has published poetry, prose and translation in many journals, paper and electronic, including: Jacket Magazine, Poetry International (San Diego State University), The Georgia Review (University of Georgia), Grand Street, SLANT (University of Central Arkansas), Consciousness Literature and the Arts (University of Wales, Aberystwyth), Orbis (UK), Eclectica, and Quarterly Literary Review Singapore. His Hyperlinked Online Bibliography appears in the pages of The Catalyzer Journal.

Doug Ramspeck lives in Lima, Ohio, with his wife Beth and their sixteen-year-old daughter Lee. More than 175 of his poems have been published or are forthcoming by journals that include West Branch, Rattle, Confrontation Magazine, Connecticut Review, Rosebud, Nimrod, Roanoke Review, RHINO, The Cream City Review, and Seneca Review. He directs the Writing Center and teaches creative writing and composition at The Ohio State University at Lima. He doesn't recall very much about the actual creation of the poems that appear in this issue, except that, with "Fugue State with Vinaigrette," he came up the title first and then said to himself, somewhat scornfully, "Now go ahead and see if you can make a poem out of that!"

Barbara Roush was born in Huntington, West Virginia, where she attended Marshall University. She now resides in Athens, Ohio, near Ohio University. She works as a painter and writer, often incorporating words in her images when she is uncertain which medium best expresses an idea. "Burying Chernobyl" was inspired by the translation of Svelana Alexievich's Voices from Chernobyl, an oral history told by the survivors of the 1985 nuclear accident in the Ukraine.

Dan Schneider is the webmaster/founder of Cosmoetica and Cinemension.

Oleg Semonov was born in the city of Makeyevka (Donetsk region, Ukraine) and graduated from Donetsk National University (Department of English Philology) in 1990. He has since worked as interpreter/translator for commercial companies in Ukraine. As for "Ukraine," this poem was written at the moment of radical changes there after the disintegration of the Soviet Union. Oleg's work also appears in Electric A corn and North American anthologies.

Ann Skealives in Australia. She is the author of Ted Hughes: The Poetic Quest (UNE Press, Australia).

Maryanne Snell spends most of her time taking care of her beautiful new baby daughter. In the rare times when said daughter is sleeping, Maryanne attempts to cram in all the reading, writing, and reviewing to which she previously had hours to devote. During that limited time, she is working on a mystery novel set in the 1920s.

Yermiyahu Ahron Taub is the author of The Insatiable Psalm: Poems (Wind River Press, 2005), which explores the love between an ultra-Orthodox Jewish mother and her gay son. His Yiddish and English language poems, one of which was nominated for a Pushcart Prize, have appeared in numerous publications, including Adirondack Review, Five Fingers Review, The Forward, Melic Review, and Prairie Schooner, and, previously, in Eclectica. He lives in Washington, D.C.

Ray Templeton is this issue's Spotlight Author. A Scottish writer and musician living in St. Albans, England, his poetry, short fiction, writings on music, etc., have appeared in a wide range of both print and online journals, including Magma, Iota, Eclectica, Poems Niederngasse, Thieves Jargon, The New Verse News, The Argotist, Musical Traditions, and Antithesis Common. He is a member of the editorial board of Blues & Rhythm Magazine.

Jumoke Verissimo lives in Lagos, Nigeria. Some of her works have appeared in Chimurenga, Argotist-online, Bathtub Gin, and The Journal. She has a column in Nigerian newspaper The Guardian, where she interviews writers. "Come Away" is an excerpt from a novel she is working on at the moment.

Anuradha Vijayakrishnan lives in Chennai, India, and works for a bank. Her prose and poetry have appeared or are due to appear in New Writing 14, MuseIndia, Longstoryshort, Stony Thursday Anthology, Desilit, The King's English, Bare Root Review, and Orbis. One of her poems made the final shortlist of the Euphoria 2006 Poetry Contest. Whatever spare time she has is spent working on a novel, which seems to have now acquired a mind of its own.

Mary E. Whitsell grew up in California, but has lived most of her life elsewhere. She spent 17 years in Japan, studying Japanese and working as a teacher, proofreader, rewriter, and translator. Mary has also lived in the Netherlands, Wales, and Scotland, where she currently resides with her family. She writes short stories, poems, and non-fiction pieces. She won first prize in the Killie Writing Competition in January, 2006, and the United Kingdom Noise Association's short story competition. Her poem "Mrs Victoria Mustapha, I Too Could Use a Break" is published in the Winter edition of Flashquake.

Christine Allen-Yazzie lives in Utah with her husband and two daughters. Her first novel, The Arc and the Sediment, was published by Utah State University Press in April, 2007. The novel won first-place for best novel and a subsequent publication prize by the Utah Arts Council (UAC) and was a finalist in the James Jones 1st Novel Competition. Her collection of short fiction won a UAC grant and was a Drue Heinz Competition and runner-up, with an honorable mention from the Lorian Hemingway Competition for one story, while another was a finalist in the Gulf Coast contest. Her poetry received a UAC grant and 1st place from the Foster City Arts Council and 2nd in a UAC poetry contest, and she was a finalist in the W@W competition. Her stories and poems have been published in several literary journals, most recently Dos Passos Review. She has an MFA in creative writing and has operated a business, Sandstone Editing, since 1994. She last appeared in Eclectica in the July 1997 issue.

Jim Younger is the author of the novel High John the Conqueror which was published by Jonathan Cape in 2006, and will be reissued in Vintage paperback in May 2007. Jim is represented by Gill Coleridge, of Rogers, Coleridge and White.