This story has been around awhile, and I’m thrilled it’s found a home in the Spring 2016 issue of The Gettysburg Review. The story is better than ever, thanks to editor Mark Drew’s good ear. The nugget of fact at the heart of the story turned out to be the one thing that didn’t ring true. This reminds me of what Aristotle teaches, of the tragic poet, in the Poetics:
Hence even if it happens that he puts something that has actually taken place into poetry, he is none the less a poet; for there is nothing to prevent some of the things that have happened from being the kind of things that can happen, and that is the sense in which he is their maker.
Or to put it backward: Just because something has happened, doesn’t mean it’s the kind of thing that can happen in the context of a work of art.
This new story just came out in the gay-men’s literary journal Jonathan, which has published some of my brilliant, talented friends. My contributor’s copy seems to have got lost in the mail. But on the publisher’s website I saw the cover, which appears to show three bears bathing–so I know it exists! Can’t wait to see for myself.
Whoever anonymously nominated Fire Year for this prize, which “recognizes Bay Area writers who have made an exceptional contribution to literary arts through a uniquely Jewish perspective,” thank you!
Well, I won second prize and get to read at the Jewish Museum in New York in December.
Is it a pathetic need for credibility in my home region that makes me so happy to be reviewed in Southern Humanities Review? Or just that it’s such a good journal?
I’m honored to be included with Dorothy Allison and a generous selection of other writers in the anthology The Queer South, edited by charming man of letters Douglas Ray. My contribution is a new personal essay. You can order the book anywhere, including from the publisher, Sibling Rivalry Press.
Writing is hard; mostly you fail. What you think is passable meets constant rejection. It gets a bit much. This is why so many writers have memoirs of madness in them. Mission at Tenth, published by California Institute of Integral Studies, located right here in Fog City, which I think is a way of referring to San Francisco, is hefty and shockingly slick for an arts journal. It’s got a lot of everything, including my piece “Feeling, Better,” from my own memoir of madness in progress.
Storyville, an app that brings a story from a published collection each week to its subscribers, has chosen “The Golem,” from Fire Year, for its story of the week. Check it out at http://storyvilleapp.com/.
Thanks, David Pratt, for the kind words in the gay book review blog Out in Print.
As much as I want everyone to read my book, even I wouldn’t go so far as to call Fire Year beach reading. But I’m happy that the gay “distraction” site Rukkle did.