Welcome to our Summer/Fall AWARDS ISSUE! We are thrilled to announce our contest winners and finalists. For all submitters, many many thanks for your fine work, so fine that some of you who are not finalists here will be receiving requests from us to publish your work. Also soon we will be posting here a new feature: a list of Memorable Fiction and Nonfiction Contest Pieces.
For FICTION: The winner of the $1,000 prize is Patricia Ann McNair for her passionate, vivid story “My Mother’s Daughter.”
Runner-up is Jim Meirose for “Mister Lucas’ Punishment,” a premise piece that offers a microcosm of life. A must read!
The three fiction finalists are: Susan Muaddi Darraj for “The Fall,” a haunting tale of a family’s multi-ethnic identity. Susan is the winner of the AWP 2014 Grace Paley Prize in Short Fiction.
James Anderson for his ironic, poignant “The Hat Salesman,” presenting a most unpredictable love affair.
Susan Bernhard for “Winter Loon,” a novel excerpt which takes us deep beneath the surface into the tragic life of a child.
In addition, not a contest entry, but FEATURED FICTION: Liza Ketchum’s young adult/adult adventure “Shotgun Summer.”
In NONFICTION, the winner of the $500 Prize, donated by Michael Steinberg, is Mary Collins for a lyrical, intense narrative of her tragically troubled brother.
Runner-up is Elizabeth de Souza for “The Knotty One.”
The nonfiction finalists are: Leslie Lawrence for “At the Donkey Hotel,”
an up-close view of a unique vet in Morocco.
Beth Richards for “Before, After,” a deeply moving depiction of a sister’s death.
Also, not contest entries but FEATURED NONFICTION:
Marianne Leone’s affecting “The Official Story.”
Mimi Schwartz’s ironic, “AD IN/AD OUT.”
Michael Steinberg’s piece on craft, “One Story, Two Narrators.”
And Dale Peterson’s critique, “Nature Writing and T.C. Boyle.”
And deep thanks to Karin Rosenthal for her nationally-known photographs.
Poetry Editor’s Note
If we think of rhythm as the relationship between contrasting elements, then there is a wonderful rhythmic conversation playing throughout all the poems in this issue. Why do we say things that can break glass? Matthew Gallant asks in his poem Inscription, just as Richard Garcia’s piece offers us the destruction of light into painful shards. Meanwhile the form of Tanuja Mehrotra’s Torch Song, which threads so many snippets with the repeating lines of a ghazal, seems to speak to Alysia Harris’ poem, Crow’s Sugar—the winner of this year’s Stephen Dunn Prize—whose form offers us the dynamic tension between alternation and alteration. And it’s hard not to hear each of these poems as both another nod to impermanence, as Greg Kosmicki writes in his fine poem One Time, and a fair shake against it. It was a pleasure and privilege to read all the poems submitted to this year’s contest, and we hope you enjoy the conversation between the poems selected for this summer’s issue.
Ben Berman and Jamaal May
OTHER ANNOUNCEMENTS: SolLitBooks second eBook just published! The Message by Eugenio Volpe. A riveting tale of a veteran with PTSD. Order from Amazon today! Many thanks to co-editor for eBooks, Jenifer DeBellis.
And congratsto Mike Miner, his eBook “Everything She Knows” won an honorable mention in the 2014 Global eBook Awards!
Solsticelitmag will be moderating a panel at AWP15. Title: Making Diversity Happen. And we’ll be sharing a booth at the AWP Bookfair with Talking Writing. More to come.
Also, we thank our donors at our June annual bash and fundraiser! You will be listed soon on our donor’s page! Our first silent auction was a success! Many thanks to two restaurants in the Boston area: Sweet Basil and Not Your Average Joes for donating gift certificates. And to Richard Hoffman and to Beacon Books, for donating so many copies of his stellar memoir, Love and Fury. Please get this provocative family saga of betrayal and reconciliation.
In these trying times, literature can reflect our innermost concerns. Read on. Lee Hope