–of the story, the periodical, the book.
The way to do that is to transform the literary art and the presentation of that art. Which we’ve begun doing, including with our first released zeen, Extreme Zeen. Now available here to purchase.
WHY is this publication an important step in the transformation process?
Not everyone will “get” it, but the clues are in the publication itself– pointing the direction for us. And, we believe, for writing and for books themselves. Which in ten years won’t resemble what the mainstream publishes now.
(Art: “Woman with Birds” by Alexandra Ekster.)
WHO ARE THE BEST NEW WRITERS?
We are going on a more relaxed posting schedule in the next so-many weeks, so we can focus on our behind-the-scenes activities.
-Creating a few print-zeen prototypes. The most ambitious aspect of the New Pop Lit project.
-Further development of our version of the “3-D” multidimensional story.
-Increased emphasis on locating striking new writing talent– with the proviso that talent isn’t enough. We seek ability to adapt to our artistic ideas of pop clarity and energy, as well as charismatic attributes.
Will we be staging an “NPL Combine” to access the best indie writers on today’s literary scene? Possibly!
We’re looking for the Billie Eilish of the literary world. Talent and pop attitude. If you’re that person, get in touch!
IN THE MEANTIME, we have much terrific writing upcoming– including a new fiction feature, more “Pop Quiz” Q & A’s, and for April, poetry and poetry-themed prose for this year’s Poetry Month. THEN, more excellent fiction. Not to miss.
(Art: “The Bach Singer” by Johannes Itten; “Portrait of Jean Metzinger” by Robert Delaunay.)
ANOTHER GOLDEN DECADE?
THE LAST iteration of the Twenties became famous for its writers– who defined the times. The literary art reigned as the most important cultural happening.
The name of the era was popularized by American novelist F. Scott Fitzgerald as “The Jazz Age.” He and his talented and flamboyant wife Zelda embodied the era.
The decade also saw the formidable debut of another literary star from the American Midwest, that unassuming individual Ernest Hemingway– who was to become the most renowned American author of all.
THE QUESTION is whether our decade, the 2020s, will see a revival of the art– so that literary fiction becomes once again glamorous and popular.
At New Pop Lit we’ll be doing everything we can to ensure this takes place.
(Art: “Cubist Composition” by Nadezhda Udaltsova; “Where There’s Smoke There’s Fire” by Russell Patterson.)
OUR 2019 PUSHCART PRIZE NOMINATIONS
AS WE ARE at present strictly a bootstrap, “pushcart” enterprise (with plans to dramatically change that standing), we appreciate the intent behind the annual Pushcart Press Pushcart Prize collections. Being able to nominate a few of the quality writers who publish work with us is one of the great blessings we receive from running this literary project.
WE BELIEVE our site is particularly in synch with the Pushcart spirit– not solely because of our small size, but also because we’re endeavoring to create a new model for both short fiction and poetry. A model not only different from standard “Big Five” publishing, but from the kind of work featured in more established literary magazines and included in such anthologies.
ANYWAY, here are our 2019 nominations. We invite you to click on the links to the work, and read or reread the nominated pieces.
(Art: Graffiti in Ann Arbor, Michigan.)
STORY PROTOTYPES NEAR READINESS
THE FIRST PUBLIC showing of the 3–D Short Story— the historic date– has been announced at our NPL News page.
THE RELEASE of a completed multi-dimensional story will provide a window into the limitless possibilities of the form. The potential of new art. A starting point.
In the first weeks of 2019 we’ll be on a relaxed schedule as we work behind the scenes to improve this project– as well as focusing on our own writing a bit as we experiment with new ways of crafting the short story. Looking for an elusive breakthrough. Knowing unless we find it, fiction will be stuck in a rut, and all literary sites like ours along with it.
Art NEEDS to change. Our literature NEEDS to be different– at least show variety away from the same-old same-old.
The short story first. Then, poetry. Then, the novel. Then: the world?
THE NEW POP LIT PROJECT IS FAR FROM OVER.
THIS WEBSITE is on brief hiatus while its two editors enjoy an extended honeymoon back up in northern Michigan’s Hemingway Country (our favorite hangout). Away from the madness. We’ll return to the site long enough to post an unsettling Halloween story– we promise!
FATHERS AND SONS PART TWO
“To be or not to be.” The question is how much Shakespeare’s play “Hamlet” is about the father-son relationship. Shakespeare’s son Hamnet (not making the name up) died before the play was written. The play may have been a tribute to the absent son– an imagined take on how the son would’ve turned out. Interesting that Shakespeare himself played the ghost of the father in the play’s first performances.
“Goodnight, sweet prince! And flights of angels sing thee to thy rest.”
TO CELEBRATE Father’s Day and the father-son relationship, we’ve decided to offer–
THE GREAT HAMLET CHALLENGE!
–to see who can record for us the Best Audio Version of the most famous speech in the history of letters, which begins, “To be or not to be. That is the question.”
There WILL be a prize offered for the best recitation sent to us– a collector’s version of the book of the play. (More later on that.) ALSO, perhaps, a prize for the worst recording of it.
THE CONTEST is open to all writers, editors, spoken word poets and unsuccessful actors. New Pop Lit‘s editors may well record our own takes. We’ll try to post every speech submitted at our Open Mic. Send to newpoplitATgmailDOTcom, with “Hamlet Challenge” in the subject box.
WHO is up to the Challenge? Anyone?
We’ll find out!
(Paintings by Benjamin West and Edwin Austin Abbey.)
THE STRUGGLES OF A WRITER can seem lonely indeed– often resulting in rejection and neglect. Yet they keep at it, pursuing their art because they believe it’s important to express truths about life and the world.
When those struggles find notice– and a sense that a reader gets it, understands what the work’s about, this keeps the writer (and in our case, editors) going. No, the effort expended was not for naught!
Christopher Landrum at the literary site Bookbread has examined here four recent short stories, three of which appeared at New Pop Lit. They are:
–“The Fetus” by Clint Margrave.
–“Eighty Pounds” by Jon Berger.
–“The Professor” by A.K. Riddle.
If you’ve read these three excellent tales, they’re worth rereading. If you haven’t, please do so! Then see what Mr. Landrum says about them.
(Art: “The Passion of Creation” by Leonid Pasternak; “Woman Writing” by Gerard ter Borch.)
A REMINDER that when we choose to we can push the edges of the usual, if not the acceptable, as far as anyone, due to our underground roots and DIY from-the-bottom viewpoint on all things cultural.
AS EXAMPLE we have our recently-posted feature story, “Cat Doctor” by mysterious on-the-arts-margins D.C. Miller, holding a mirror up to the clean and smug of today’s approved intellectual world.
THEN there’s our newly-placed book review of a new work by indie press figure Tony Nesca at our book chat blog.
FINALLY we have our ongoing Open Mic, with a reading of a striking poem by Brian Eckert along with other dynamic spoken word performances– with more to come.
(Art: “Accolade” by Edmund Blair Leighton.)