Culture & Literature
Poets & Writers Magazine

Poets & Writers Magazine January - February 2018

For more than twenty years, Poets & Writers Magazine has been a trusted companion to writers who take their vocation seriously. Within its pages, our readers find provocative essays on the literary life, practical guidance for getting published and pursuing writing careers, in-depth profiles of poets, fiction writers, and writers of creative nonfiction, and conversation among fellow professionals.

United States
Poets & Writers, Inc
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6 Issues

In this issue

1 min.

Visit The Time Is Now, our series of weekly writing prompts for poets, fiction writers, and creative nonfiction writers. While you’re there, check out our recommendations of the best books for writers and sign up to get The Time Is Now delivered to your inbox every Friday. Read the expandedversion of this year’s debut poets roundup, featuring related audio recordings and videos. Check out Writers Recommend, our weekly series of suggestions from published authors that formed the basis of this issue’s “52 Ideas for an Inspired New Year.” Get recommendations from more than four hundred authors and counting. Read an exclusive Q&A with Mary Gaitskill, author of six books of fiction, including the story collection Bad Behavior and the novel The Mare. Read the expandedinterviews with Leigh Haber of O, the Oprah Magazine and…

2 min.
editor’s note

I WISH I COULD SAY I ALWAYS SEE THE GLASS AS HALF FULL,that a brilliant glow of optimism illuminates my every thought, but it’s not quite as straightforward as that. Even before the events of the past year or so, when the earth seemed to slip a few degrees off its axis, casting a psychic shadow that has thrown into stark relief some of our most pressing issues, such as climate change, gun violence, racial injustice, and sexual misconduct—long-standing problems that, seen in this new light, are impossible to ignore—I leaned toward the half-empty view. Over the years I’ve met plenty of folks who simply beam positivity, who don’t seem to ponder the darker aspects of life (none of them, I now realize, are writers). They have a pleasant way…

3 min.

Poets & Writers Magazine welcomes feedback from its readers. Please post a comment on select articles at www.pw.org/magazine, e-mail editor@pw.org, or write to Editor, Poets & Writers Magazine, 90 Broad Street, Suite 2100, New York, NY 10004. Letters accepted for publication may be edited for clarity and length. IT’S WORKING I appreciated Kevin Larimer’s Editor’s Note (“It’s Working,” November/December 2017). It was just the kick I needed to get serious about putting in the time to do the work. I am sometimes guilty of the “romantic” idea of writing that Kevin Young, who Larimer quotes in his note, describes: “I feel like people have this notion of writing that it’s inspiration-based and romantic.... But I think it’s really just being there in your space.... It’s being there and writing.” That quote is…

5 min.
bullets into bells

It has been just over five yearssince the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut, on December 14, 2012, during which twenty first-graders and six educators were killed. Since then, more than 150,000 Americans have lost their lives as a result of gun violence, and the public debate about guns in America—recently magnified by a mass shooting in Las Vegas in October and at a church in rural Texas in November—rages on. But a new anthology of poetry and essays aims to offer a different perspective on an issue that is so often oversimplified by the media. Published a week before the fifth anniversary of the Sandy Hook shooting and coedited by poets Brian Clements, Alexandra Teague, and Dean Rader, Bullets Into Bells: Poets and Citizens Respond to Gun…

1 min.

MAYA POPA is a writer and teacher living in New York City. She is the author of the poetry chapbook The Bees Have Been Canceled (New Michigan Press, 2017). Her website is mayacpopa.com. JONATHAN VATNER is a fiction writer in Brooklyn, New York. His novel, The Chelmsford Arms, is forthcoming from Thomas Dunne Books in Fall 2018. GILA LYONS has written about feminism, mental health, and social justice for Salon, Vox, Cosmopolitan, the Huffington Post, GOOD Magazine, and other publications. Find her on Twitter, @gilalyons, or on her website, gilalyons.com. DANA ISOKAWA is the associate editor of Poets & Writers Magazine. ADRIENNE RAPHEL is the author of What Was It For (Rescue Press, 2017) and But What Will We Do (Seattle Review, 2016). Her work has appeared in the New Yorker, the Paris Review…

2 min.
page one

“After dinner, nobody went home right away.” The Largesse of the Sea Maiden (Random House, January 2018) by the late Denis Johnson. Eighteenth book, second story collection. Agent: Nicole Aragi. Editor: Susan Kamil. Publicist: Barbara Fillon. “Born in 1841 on a Faroese sheep farm, / The polar explorer was raised on a farm near / In the North Atlantic Sea, between Scotland and Iceland, on an island with more sheep than people, a shepherd’s wife gave birth to a child who would grow up to study ice.” Red Clocks (Lee Boudreaux Books, January 2018) by Leni Zumas. Third book, second novel. Agent: Meredith Kaffel Simonoff. Editor: Carina Guiterman. Publicist: Katharine Myers. “—Both things, I think.” Wild Is the Wind (Farrar, Straus and Giroux, January 2018) by Carl Phillips. Sixteenth book, fourteenth poetry…