some stories take their time to find their place.
a while ago, juked planned an art&stories print issue. their call for submissions gave me the idea to type out the story of Room2 - a visit to the museum K20.
"It’s a wonderful read – put me there with you in the museum," John Wang, the editor of juked wrote back, "but going through the rest of the material for print, all works of fiction and somewhat off-kilter in a sense, well, “Room 2” stands out the way a heron might amidst a group of ostriches."
i kept the mail. i think it was the birdiest rejection i ever received.
fast forward more than 3 handful of months. while browsing e-zines for the news-page of blueprintreview, i saw that Mississippi Review had a new call for submissions up for an ekphrasis issue: "writing about art."
maybe i should give it a try against the odds, i thought, and pulled the text out of the archive file, curious for how such an ekphrasis issue might shape out.
the issue is online now, and comes with a surprise introduction by its editor, Jane Armstrong:
I was overwhelmed by what I received: 607 submissions (more than 1500 poems) not only responding to my rather narrowly conceived call, but also describing and interacting with sculpture, film, dance, theater, opera, photography, advertising logos, road signs, architecture, all manner of visual production. I was surprised to find that what I had considered a private, somewhat secret pleasure was being done regularly and publicly by… everyone. Often by writers who didn’t even know there was a word for what they’d been doing.
the sweet news: the heron found a home. Room 2 is part of the issue.
and yep, you can count me in the group of those who hadn't known there was a word for what they've been doing.
some related links:
words lick, yellow wet - a story i wrote for the Mississippi literary now issue
Cubica - a reflection on alleys, education, art and penguins. in it, the cubes aren't inside the museum - the cube is the museum itself.