Source: fiction from the Fall issue: Anthony Martin. Ill Not in the Mind.
She sees the bus and recalls a trip in the car with her sister out in the Carolinas where they passed a group of convicts by the side of the highway—a dozen or so male inmates unchained and walking single-file toward some menial cleanup task, bookended by potbellied prison guards holding big rifles down but at the ready, the gloomy, cold steel barrels reaching well past their knees.
The editors of the website for the Pushcart Prize call their annual collection–published since 1976–a “labor of love and independent spirits.” Wonderful. Start that city and I’ll be applying for citizenship on day one.
I think the same phrase can be used to describe nearly all the presses that have nominated and/or made it into the collection over the years, and I have to tip my hat to all these publications, because without the labor of love and independent spirits their people embody, the work of fledglings like me might never make it to the page.
In recent months, the best personal example I have of this commitment is Pea River Journal, edited by Trish Harris. I’ve watch the work accepted for the 2014 “Burden of Home” issue (available for purchase now) shared, promoted, and nurtured in the days and weeks leading up to the official release date. This includes my story, “Ill Not in the Mind,” which was recently nominated for the 2014 Pushcart Prize by the editors of PRJ:
Any way you cut it, ye red-eyed kitchen-knife-wielding public, I’m in good company. Come at me and say different. Before you do, check out the other nominees from the 2014 issue of Pea River Journal:
- “Back to the Old House” by Robert Fanning
- “Why Wolves Take the Calves First” by Chris DiCicco
- “The Plum” by Richard J. Heby
- “Slow Wave” by Amanda Miska
- “Oh Ezra” by Eric M. R. Webb
Like I said. I’ll be holding all this work in my hands soon, can’t wait to read and share all the lovelies, and hope you will be doing the same. In the mean time, grab an issue of PRJ and perpetuate all the the good things you want to see in the world, because the merde would still cause a stink even if you didn’t wake up this morning.
If you follow this blog, you might have read my story “Ill Not in the Mind,” published online as a preview to the Fall 2014 issue of Pea River Journal. Or maybe you’ve ignored all this completely. Fine. But if you’re looking for a literary journal to hold in your hands, one that will twist you and turn you and make you ache, order a copy of the Fall 2014 issue of Pea River Journal, now available in print.
Order a print copy of Pea River Journal
The theme of this issue is the burden of home. Get’s you thinking, doesn’t it? There are so many ways to approach this theme, and some of the most compelling are represented in this issue of PRJ–the gut-wrenching, challenging stuff that I live for.
I’m honored to be a part of this issue.
“Ill Not in the Mind,” a short story of mine that will appear in the Fall 2014 issue of Pea River Journal (in print soon), is available to read online:
Ill Not in the Mind
Special thanks to editor-in-chief Trish Harris and her team for seeing something in my work and helping me ready it for general consumption.
I hope this work breaks your heart like it broke mine.
PS I will send out another update when I have more information about where and how we can all pick up a print copy of the Fall 2014 issue of Pea River Journal.