Ecotone

Friday Author Roundup

Thank goodness it’s Friday! To kick off the weekend, we’re once again showing our Lookout authors some love. Check out the recent happenings that caught our eye:

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Friday Author Roundup

In an attempt to keep track of Lookout’s first four prolific authors—Edith Pearlman, Steve Almond, John Rybicki, and Ben Miller—as well as the contributors to Astoria to Zion: Twenty-Six Stories of Risk and Abandon from Ecotone’s First Decade, we’re beginning a new weekly roundup department, featuring author news. We at Lookout and Ecotone are awfully proud of our growing family, and we hope you’ll show these authors some love by clicking through. Enjoy our first roundup.

  • Karen E. Bender writes “The Emotional Power of Verbs” for the New York Times.
  • The Express Tribune’s Nuzhat Saadia Siddiqi praises Maggie Shipstead’s book Seating Arrangements, saying that “the book under review steers so far away from the average chick lit bestseller that you’ll be left with a grin on your face and satisfaction over time well spent.
  • Steve Almond offers advice to readers on Cognoscenti’s Heavy Meddle blog.
  • Aspen Public Radio featured Ben Fountain and Rick Bass in their weekly show, First Draft, which “highlights the voices of writers as they discuss their work, their craft and the literary arts.”
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Astoria to Zion Goodreads Giveaway

We’re excited to announce our first book giveaway through Goodreads. Just sign up before February 7 to receive one of twenty early copies of Astoria to Zion: Twenty-Six Stories of Risk and Abandon from Ecotone’s First Decade with a foreword by Ben Fountain and featuring stories by Steve Almond, Rick Bass, Kevin Brockmeier, Lauren Groff, Cary Holladay, Rebecca Makkai, David Means, Edith Pearlman, Benjamin Percy, Ron Rash, Bill Roorbach, Maggie Shipstead, Marisa Silver, Brad Watson, and Kevin Wilson, among many others! And if you do receive a copy, we’ll hope that you’ll review the book and help us spread the word.

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Astoria to Zion with a foreword by Ben Fountain

Giveaway ends February 07, 2014.

See the giveaway details at Goodreads.

Enter to win

First Paragraph from “The Wreckers” by George Makana Clark

December 17,1820

Dearest Ezadurah,

With luck, this will reach you before I’m missed. Time comes when a man has to rattle his fortune and see what shakes out, so says my new fast friend, and by God, with my lungs filled with sea air, the salt spray in my face, I reckon he’s right.

—George Makana Clark

Excerpted from “The Wreckers” from Astoria to Zion: Twenty-Six Stories of Risk and Abandon from Ecotone’s First Decade. Copyright © 2014 by University of North Carolina Wilmington. Used by permission of Lookout Books. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.

Ecotone nonfiction editor Carson Vaughn: On Balance from Essay Daily

In case you missed our Facebook post last week, we wanted to share a great article on what the nonfiction editor from our sister publication, Ecotone, looks for in an essay.

“As nonfiction editor, I search for work that adroitly balances objective reporting and subjective discovery, essays and stories that show an equal respect for the internal and the external. I look for writers who aren’t afraid to probe the world around them while simultaneously mining the world within; who are eager to physically hunt for the story, but also know when to bring it home, to employ their own reasoning and their own bias and their own interiority to connect on a more human level.”

—Carson Vaughn, “On Balance” from Essay Daily

Be sure to check out the full article, and if you’re still searching for helpful information about submitting to a literary journal, former Lookout intern and fiction editor Nicola DeRobertis-Theye suggests five tips for writing your cover letter.

Advance Reading Copies On the Way!

After uploading the ARC yesterday, we’re one step closer to the March 2014 release of Astoria to Zion: Twenty-Six Stories of Risk and Abandon from Ecotone’s First Decade with a foreword by Ben Fountain.

image[Lookout intern Katie Jones putting the finishing touches on the ARC back cover.]

If you’re a reviewer or blogger and would like to request a copy of the ARC, please e-mail lookout@uncw.edu.

Here’s the fantastic design in greater detail.

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Five Cover Letter Tips for Submitting to a Literary Journal

1.      Like all writers, we love animals, but after a while we get a little tired of hearing about your pets. If you have three turtles, we don’t think, oh but those three turtles probably need some fancy flies that could be bought with the money from publishing this story. We’re happy you have things in your life that you love—but this is a cover letter. Let’s get to your story!

2.      It’s usually best to keep the letter brief. Sure, we want to know that you’ve been published by the Paris Review, the New Yorker, and Agni—Hooray!—but then you’re fine with the phrase “and many other journals.” Listing another twenty places feels unnecessary. Plus the block of text makes our eyes glaze. Pick the top three or four—maybe five—and keep some mystery in this relationship.

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Meet our Poetry Editor, Regina DiPerna!

ecotonejournal:

Regina is a 3rd-year poet in the MFA program at UNCW. We love her and we knew you would too, so we asked her a few questions so y’all could get to know her:

Favorite author, book, journal? What do you like? “Although I am a poet by trade, I find Paul Auster and Milan Kundera very inspiring. I also cannot wait to order the newest from Zadie Smith and Junot Diaz. As for poetry, I try to read the newest chapbooks I can find— I’m interested in exploring the current moment in poetry, however experimental or traditional, and always considering if a new voice would be a good fit for Ecotone. Also, let’s face it, I read an embarrassing amount of celebrity gossip”

Hit us with a place-based factoid/story about yourself: “I never thought I would live within walking distance of a Hooters. Sigh.”

Your favorite thing Ecotone ever published? “Mary Reufle’s three poems in the Remembrance issue were dynamite. Also, I really enjoyed Peter LaSalle’s short story ‘Tell Me About Nerval’ in the Happiness issue.”

Something random? “I sometimes have fantasies about breaking into other people’s houses and cleaning them.”
 
 
And that, dear readers, is Regina in 4 questions and a picture!
Want to meet the rest of our staff?
Stay tuned!

Great post from our favorites, Ecotone Journal!