Apr/May 2012

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.

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.

E-MailNicole Borg is an ex-English teacher turned small town literary magazine editor and work-from-home-mom. Her poetry has appeared in several Minnesota publications: Talking Stick, Dust & Fire, Green Blade, and Poetic Strokes, as well as Chantarelle's Notebook ezine. In 2011, she earned an honorable mention in the Loft Mentor Series for Poetry, and she has won the grand prize in the League of Minnesota Poet's annual contest twice. She is seeking a publisher for her poetry manuscript, Out of Kansas. Nicole lives on the Mississippi with her husband and son. She is anxiously awaiting the birth of their second child later this spring.

Antonia Clark works for a medical software company in Vermont and co-administers an online poetry forum, The Waters Poetry Workshop. Her poems have appeared in Anderbo, Apparatus, The Cortland Review, The Pedestal Magazine, Rattle, Softblow, and elsewhere. She loves French picnics and plays French café music on a sparkly purple accordion.

Barbara De Franceschi is an Australian poet who lives in Broken Hill, a small mining town in outback New South Wales. Her poetry has appeared in literary journals Australia-wide and also in Ireland, Wales, New Zealand, on line USA, and Switzerland. Her first collection, Lavender Blood, was published in 2004, and a second collection, Strands, will be launched in May 2009. 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. 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. She recently co-edited the book From this Broken Hill (see link), and she is running a creative writing workshop at a local hospital for health professionals, trying to ascertain if art and health can work collaboratively to increase skills such as communication and the interpretation of visual thinking.

Morgan Elliott is this issue's Spotlight Author. A writer and illustrator, his work has appeared in various publications, most recently in ZYZZYVA and the TJ Eckleburg Review. A native of Petaluma, California, Morgan divides his time between San Francisco and his ancestral homeland of Helsinki, Finland. To see more of his work, please visit his website, Guiltworld.com.

Leah Erickson has appeared in many magazines in print and online, including The Saint Ann's Review, The Stickman Review, Prick of the Spindle, The Absent Willow Review, Forge Journal, the Furnace Review, and The Summerset Review. Her work appears in the print anthology Unlikely Stories of the Third Kind, and she has work forthcoming in The Fabulist. She lives in Rhode Island with her husband and daughter.

William Fargason has a BA in English from Auburn University, where he served as poetry editor of the literary magazine The Circle. He lives with himself in Hyattsville, Maryland, where he is a poetry MFA candidate at the University of Maryland.

Gloria Garfunkel is a clinical psychologist with a Ph.D from Harvard University. She has published short stories, flash fiction and micro-memoir in Natural Bridge, Eclectica, Six Sentences, and the chapter "Lifeline" in a collection by Michael Sussman, A Perilous Calling: The Hazards of Psychotherapy Practice. Her parents' Holocaust experiences blend with her own in most of her work. This story is dedicated to the memory of her father, Yehoshuah Falik ben Moshe haCohen, who died on February 26, 2012, at the age of eighty-nine.

Bruce Graham is a native of New Jersey and a graduate of Fordham Law School. He is admitted to practice law in three states, has served many years on the staff of two legislatures, has instructed law and is a former administrative law judge and part-time misdemeanor judge in Iowa. His articles, stories, poems, and reviews have appeared or are forthcoming in various publications, including The Highlander, Alfred Hitchcock's Mystery Magazine, I Love Cats, Farm & Ranch, Bibliophilos, Lighthouse Digest, WWII Magazine, Futures Mysterious, Armchair General, the Orlando Florida Sentinel, Oracle, The Storyteller, and NutHouse Magazine.

Anne Germanacos has appeared in over 80 literary journals and anthologies. Her collection of short stories, In the Time of the Girls, was published by BOA Editions in 2010. She and her husband live in San Francisco and on Crete.

Finn Harvor is a writer and artist. He lives with his wife in South Korea and works as an assistant professor at HUFS. He has appeared in HUFS International Journal of Foreign Studies, Canadian Notes and Queries, The Korea Times, Prism, Teh Canadian Forum, This Magazine, Dark Sky, The Brooklyn Rail, Dogmatika, and elsewhere. He's had group and solo shows of his art, written and staged two fringe plays, and worked broadcast on national radio in Canada. He is now at work on an extended prose-and-poetry manuscript entitled Plastic Millennium. Regarding the piece in this issue, he says it "...is part of a longer series that initially was an attempt to combine words and images in order to capture the 'seen and the underseen' of Korea; that is, the stream of associations and thoughts that appear in one's mind not so much as thoughts but something more fleeting—thoughts akin to images. The word 'baram' is a transliteration of the Korean word for wind."

Tim Hawkins has lived and traveled widely throughout North America, Southeast Asia, and Latin America, where he has worked as a journalist, technical writer, communications manager, and teacher in international schools. His career has also taken some interesting detours into such posts as fish cannery slime table worker, nose-hair clipper model, and cram school teacher. After spending much of the '90's and '00's abroad, he currently lives in his hometown of Grand Rapids, Michigan. His writing has appeared in numerous print and online publications, most recently in Blueline, Iron Horse Literary Review, The Midwest Quarterly, The Pedestal Magazine, and The Shit Creek Review, and is forthcoming in The Smoking Poet and Verse Wisconsin. He was nominated by the journal Four and Twenty for a 2012 Pushcart Prize.

Lauren Henley was born and raised in Joshua Tree, California. She lived for two years behind the redwood curtain of Humboldt. She thinks place and poetry go together like eggs and potatoes. You can hear her read poems about Humboldt in Menacing Hedge (where she has some photography appearing as well). Her work is also at A River and Sound Review, The Medulla Review, and is forthcoming in River Styx and Prick of the Spindle. She is the winner of the 2012 Duckabush Prize in Poetry. A former Eclectica Spotlight Author, she also edits the literary journal, Aperçus Quarterly.

Thomas J. Hubschman is a regular contributor to Eclectica's Salon and is the author of two novels (Look at Me Now and Billy Boy), a short story collection (The Jew's Wife & Other Stories) and two anthologies of writing from the so-called Third World (The Best of Gowanus: New Writing from Africa, Asia and the Caribbean and The Best of Gowanus II: More New Writing from Africa, Asia and the Caribbean). His short stories and non-fiction have been widely published, including on the BBC.

Andy James was born in South Wales. He now lives in London.

Alex Keegan began writing seriously in 1992, publishing five mystery novels before switching to serious short fiction. He has been published widely in print and on the web and been awarded more than a dozen first prizes for his fiction as well as three Bridport Prizes. Born in Wales with an Irish mother, he now lives and writes in Newbury, England, where he lives with his second wife and two teenage children. This is his 24th piece and 13th appearance in Eclectica. He runs a tough internet writing school called "Boot Camp Keegan," many of the alumnus of which have appeared in Eclectica as well, individually and as part of a feature dedicated to raising money for needy children.

Jascha Kessler isProfessor Emeritus of Modern English & American Literature at UCLA. He has published seven books of his poetry and fiction as well as six volumes of translations of poetry and fiction from Hungarian, Persian, and Bulgarian, several of which have won major prizes. In 1989, his translation of Sándor Rákos' Catullan Games won the Translation Award from the National Translation Center (Marlboro Press). His latest volume of fiction, Siren Songs & Classical Illusions: 50 Stories, appeared in December of 1992. He served as Arts Commissioner for the City of Santa Monica 1990-1996 and won a Fellowship in Fiction Writing for 1993-1994 from the California Arts Council. His recent works include a translation of King Oedipus, with a Translatorís Preface in Sophocles, 2 (Univ. of Pennsylvania Press, 1999). He recently completed a 625-page book of fables, told by an ancient hermit to students up in Carpathian Mountains from 1745 to 1812. The book is called King Solomon's Seal, and it is looking for a bold publisher.

Julia Braun Kessler is a former Spotlight author. She is a long-time journalist with credits that include publications like Travel & Leisure, Family Circle, Geo, and many others. She is the author of four novels: Presumption, The Third Sister, Jane Austen's Charlotte and the forthcoming Mary Crawford. The piece in this issue's Spotlight is the latest of her memoir pieces, which have appeared in various magazines in recent years, among them Eclectica, Midstream, and California Literary Review.

Ellen Kombiyil is a native of Syracuse, New York, and a graduate of the University of Chicago. Her poetry has appeared or is forthcoming in Beloit Poetry Journal, Cider Press Review, Eclectica, MiPOesias, The Pedestal, Sojourn, and Spillway, among others. She lives in India with her husband and two children, where she is working on the manuscript for her first book.

Inderjeet Mani lives in Chiang Mai, Thailand, and has had his work published in BLIP Magazine, 3:AM Magazine, Drunken Boat (Finalist for the Pan Literary Award, also one of storySouth's Million Writers Award Notable Stories of 2007), Slow Trains, Nimrod (Finalist for Katherine Anne Porter Prize), WIND (2003 Short Fiction Award), Word Riot, Asia Writes, Kimera, Plum Ruby Review, The Reston Review, The Deccan Herald, and various other venues. He is also the author of The Imagined Moment, a book that analyzes time in fiction. Readers considering a visit to Onya's birthplace or Chiang Mai may contact him via email.

Edward Massey sees heroic acts in the work of ordinary people. This story is from a novel he has recently finished, Sheriff Simms. The Sheriff leads the reader through 100 years of heritage while he leads a posse through 13 hours of tracking a fugitive in 1948. From this novel, "Silver Freight" has been published by Rope and Wire and "Executioner" has been published by Pill Hill Press in its anthology, Another Wild West. Edward lives in Connecticut with his wife where he writes every day.

Marjorie Mir has edited poetry for Monhegan Commons for the past ten years, and, in that capacity, edited an anthology of the poems published there. Her poetry has appeared most frequently in Atlanta Review and Light. In 2000, she was awarded first prize in Atlanta Review's International competition. She lives in Bronxville, New York, where she is a retired librarian and a member of Poetry Caravan, a group of Westchester writers who share poetry with the residents of nursing homes and assisted living facilities. She says, "'This Table' began with some thoughts and memories of my cat Gabriel in the days after his death. From there, the way opened to reflections on the table itself, its place in my life and its own possible afterlife."

Okechukwu Otukwu holds a degree in law from the University of Calabar, Nigeria, but he has always shown an active interest in writing. His short stories have appeared in both print and online publications, including Timber Creek Review, Prosopisia, Green Hill Literary Lantern, Story time, Sentinel, and others. He has also written for the movies and has the credit for story and script of the Nigerian movie by the title "The Barrister" starring the multiple award-winning Nigerian comedian, Nkem Owoh. He has also been published in Igbo, in which he won the Ken Nnamani/ANA Prize for Igbo Literature. He lives in Calabar, Nigeria, where he is working on his first novel.

Reward O. Nsirim was trained in Medicine and Public Health at the Universities of Port Harcourt, Nigeria, and London, respectively. He works as a Public Health practitioner in Abuja, Nigeria, where he resides with his wife Ogonna. Poetry and short fiction are his primary passion and nocturnal preoccupation. He is working on a collection of short stories, to be titled "Fresh Air and Other Stories."

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), The Evansville Review (University of Evansville), Rattle (online), Consciousness Literature and the Arts (University of Wales, Aberystwyth), Orbis (UK), Eclectica, and Valparaiso Poetry Review. Links to his work online and to a selected bibliography of his work in paper venues appear at his Hyperlinked Online Bibliography.

Arjun Rajendran is originally from Bombay, India, and now lives in Austin, Texas. He has published in various print and electronic journals/magazines, including Pyrta, QLRS, and Nether, with poems forthcoming in SOFTBLOW, Tongues of the Ocean, and an anthology of contemporary Indian poetry in English edited by Paula Hayes and Jaydeep Sarangi. "Pyre" is based on a childhood incident in rural Tamil Nadu, a state in South India. An original, more florid version was jettisoned for a direct (and darker) approach.

Ethel Rohan is the author of Hard to Say (PANK, 2011), and Cut Through the Bone (Dark Sky Books, 2010), the latter named a 2010 Notable Story Collection by The Story Prize. Her work has or will appear in World Literature Today, The Irish Times, The Chattahoochee Review, The Los Angeles Review, Southeast Review Online, Potomac Review, and elsewhere. She earned her MFA in fiction from Mills College, California. Raised in Ireland, she now lives in San Francisco.

Alex Rosak was born in 1981 and lives in the English Cotswolds, where amongst other activities, he writes short stories, poetry, and (until now) unproduced screenplays. He began writing at age 11 after reading his first Agatha Christie book. After trying his hand at crime stories with limited sucess, he now favors short stories with an introspective, almost plotless style. He owes a debt of gratitude to Katherine Mansfield for displaying the subtle possibilities of the genre and to Roberto Bolano for illustrating how much literature matters.

Ann Skea lives in Australia. She is the author of Ted Hughes: The Poetic Quest (UNE Press, Australia) and has been contributing reviews to Eclectica Magazine since our very first issue back in October of 1996.

Ray Templeton is a former Spotlight Author. A Scottish writer and musician, he lives in St. Albans, England. His writing, including poetry and short fiction among other things, has appeared both in print and on the web, and sometimes even other people sing his songs. Recent work can be found in Eclectica, nthposition, Left Hand Waving, and qarrtsiluni. His e-chapbook The Act Of Finding was published in 2009 by Right Hand Pointing, and his collection of prose poems The Skin Still Feels The Stone by White Knuckle Press in 2011. He is a regular contributor to Musical Traditions and a member of the editorial board of Blues & Rhythm magazine.

Jessica Tyner is originally from Oregon, a member of the Cherokee Nation, and has been a writer and editor for ten years. She is a copy writer for Word Jones, a travel writer with Mucha Costa Rica, a writer for TripFab, a copy editor at the London-based Flaneur Arts Journal, and a contributing editor at New York's Thalo Magazine. She has recently published short fiction in India's Out of Print Magazine, and poetry in Slow Trains Literary Journal, Straylight Magazine, Solo Press, and Glint Literary Journal. She lives in San Jose, Costa Rica.