Glimmerglass Girl was featured on That Bookshelf Bitch, a blog by a lovely writer who is doing the hard work of supporting women writers through reviews! I am beyond honored to be listed among the names of Rupi Kaur and one of my favorite books of 2018, Women of Resistance.
I have an article up at Cotton Xenomorph today which lists the six elements of flash fiction for me.
Writing advice is tricky. I struggled approaching this article because some part of me was adverse to the idea of the word "Manifesto." It seems so apart from what I understand flash fiction to be. So let me just say that this is just how I read and write flash fiction and not some grand set of rigid rules.
We are all humans and we write in our own ways. I know this especially from working as a freelancer. I work with authors and I have to come into their space of writing gently because everyone is different. Some writers wake early in the morning to write before taking their three kids to school. Some stay up late chatting with friends online while revising. We fit writing into our lives, but we rarely sit down and think: What am I really doing here? How does this fulfill me and how can I nurture that feeling? For me, this list is how I nurture my writing of flash fiction and how I understand the genre. But it's just my own experience and understanding.
The most important rule on this list to me is #1: Empathy. I think this also applies to our own work. I see so many emerging writers, marginalized writers, women writers, who are afraid to put their work out into the world. I wish I could say to all of you, your voice matters. Because putting your own vulnerabilities on the page creates empathy. We are humans who need to live in a shared world of experience.
My poem "Sea Fog" appears in UNDEAD: A Poetry Anthology of Ghosts, Ghouls, and More from Apex Book Company! Don't miss this creepy little piece.
Pre-order your copy!
I have a little short story in this anthology from Flame Tree Publishing! My story "Stardust" is about a sexbot with a heart of fire who finds her way out of a complicated relationship with a cop . . . all set in the future and with a 20s nostalgia feel.
Pre-order your copy from Amazon or from Flame Tree! Books ship in September/November.
My chapbook is featured today with a review at MookyChick! Thanks to Chloë Moloney for writing about my chapbook:
"Holly Lyn Walrath’s Glimmerglass Girl is a delicate yet prevailing portrayal of womanhood in the twenty-first century. With a voracious appetite for the world, Walrath invites the reader to explore and honour femininity in all its glory..."
Read the full review
I was interviewed by the Literary Librarian about my new chapbook, Glimmerglass Girl!
"My writing routine changes all the time because my schedule as a freelance editor is constantly shifting. On a good writing day, I sit down to read on my patio and get some inspiration from books I love. Then I’ll write for an hour or so, sometimes working from prompts or just playing around. There are times where I write every day, but for the most part I have to take the time for my work. It’s not easy to juggle all the demands of the world. I also like to play with writing every day in NaPoWriMo and NaNoWriMo..."
I was interviewed by Les Femmes Folles about my new chapbook, Glimmerglass Girl, and my feminist heroine: Ursula K. Le Guin.
"Since Ursula K. Le Guin left us last year, I’ve been thinking a lot about her words and her work. Le Guin spoke eloquently and adamantly about justice and the art of women, as in the above speech at the National Book Awards, but also in life. I came to Le Guin’s work late in my own life, but I find myself seeking out all her writings now. Her poetry in particular speaks to me in its simplicity, in how it is often overlooked when we discuss her writing, and in its deep intimacy with the reader. But it is not so much her writing that inspires me so much as her career, it’s longevity, bravery, and wisdom. I hope to keep writing as long as Le Guin did and with as much respect for the word..."
So, lately I haven't been able to read as much because I've been so busy promoting my new chapbook, Glimmerglass Girl. But I was able to sneak in this little interview with local Houston author Patricia Flaherty Pagan on three books I love.
These are authors that I return to again and again because their work speaks to me. I highly suggest you start reading them if you like short fiction and experimental work!
What's this? Glimmerglass Girl is available for download on NetGalley! If you're a reviewer, bookstore, blogger, or other VIP please consider downloading a copy to review! (Note: Only available until November!)
My book is also on Goodreads now!
Hey y'all! I have a new poem up at the Ekphrastic Review. It is an excerpt from my chapbook, Glimmerglass Girl.
This poem is called "Anvil Crawler" and it is an art response poem to a piece of art by John Bernhard, a local Houston artist. I got to go see him yesterday and pick up my copy of the book Dreamlike Art & Deviations (Isn't it gorgeous?) which is now available on Amazon. John and I have worked together for several years now as part of his magazine, ArtHouston. So it was lovely to see him, the book, and his exhibition at the Art Car Museum in Houston.
I love collaborating with artists like this, and you'll notice that many of the poems in my chapbook are ekphrastic or pieces that are paired with artwork. There's just something moving to me about putting words and art together.
We weren't able to include John's artwork in the chapbook because it's full color and I didn't want to diminish the work by transferring it to black and white. As you can see, the color really makes a difference. However, I'm still glad that this piece appears in my book and it was a delightful experience working with John.
Anywho, go read the poem!
Here's my schedule for Comicpalooza 2018!
The Uncanny Valley in Fiction: Writing the Nearly Human
Friday, May 25
3:30-4:30pm - 370D
Evoking the uncanny, as understood by Housman and Freud, is one of the most evocative ways to add a skin-crawling sense of horror to your fiction. This panel will focus on how the uncanny works, what its roots and motifs are, and how to use it. Examples will include works by Neil Gaiman, Salvador Dali, Susan Cooper and David Lynch.
Poetry of the Imagination: Offsite Reading
Friday, May 25
7:00-9:00pm - Kaboom Books
3116 Houston Avenue
Houston, TX 77009
2018 marks the 40th anniversary of the Science Fiction and Fantasy Poetry Association (SFPA). Join SFPA President Bryan Thao Worra, along with Houston residents Holly Walrath (author of Glimmerglass Girl), Saba Razvi (author of Of the Divining and the Dead), T. Haven Morse (Flooded By, Beam Me Up Yoda), Kate Pentecost (Elysium Girls), and Deborah L. Davitt (Ave, Caesarion), along with Dallas-area poets Michelle Muenzler (The Hills of Meat, the Forest of Bone) and Bonnie Jo Stufflebeam (Strange Monsters), and Iowa poet Karen Bovenmeyer (Swift for the Sun) for an evening of speculative poetry.
This event is FREE and open to the public!
Character Springboard Workshop
Saturday, May 26
1:30-3:00pm - 370E
Drawing from popular television, movies, and books, this workshop explores how to create in-depth characters in your novels and short fiction. Feel free to bring a piece you are working on, or start something new using exercises from the workshop.
Writing Violence in Speculative Fiction
Saturday, May 26
3:30-4:00pm - 370F
Good writing involves conflict, and conflict can involve violence. How do writers create violent scenes effectively without sacrificing world building and characterization? When is the hint of violence scarier, and more effective, than a fully realized attack or battle? Should violence be handled differently for different audiences (such as YA and senior citizens)? Does the current international political and military climate affect the way that writers shape violent scenes? Our panel will discuss these crucial questions for the genre writer.
Speculative Poetry Deathmatch!
Saturday, May 26
4:30-5:30pm - 370E
Join us for an entertaining and interactive panel on science fiction, fantasy and horror poetry. Learn a little about speculative poetry, hear poets read some of their works, and then participate in a lyrical death-match in which you, the audience, decide which poet walks away with a tinfoil crown and bragging rights.
I have a new post up at Curious Fictions, an essay on writing flash fiction. Subscribers also get a free eBook of my story "Mermaid Hunt."
Curious Fictions is a website similar to Patreon where I post occasional content, essays, and other random stuff.
Below is a list of events I'll be participating in this year! Hope to see you around. Please come say hi - I love meeting other writers.
Comicpalooza (Panelist and hosting the SFPA Poetry reading May 25th)
I'm the 2018 SFPA Contest chair. Submissions open June 1!
June 26, 6:30pm: Reading Fix Coffee Bar hosted by Mike Alexander
Flash Fiction Retreat Breckenridge
August 22nd-September 12: Writespace Writing Life 101 Workshop
August 25: Writespace Poetry of the Fantastic Workshop
September 29: Reading, Art & Words Show hosted by Bonnie Jo Stufflebeam
Whew, deep breaths. I am really pleased to share with you some early reviews for my forthcoming chapbook, Glimmerglass Girl (Finishing Line Press 2018). It is so exciting (and a bit terrifying) to see that people are already engaging with this book.
My chapbook was reviewed by VIDA: Women in the Literary Arts. This is such an honor, as VIDA is a very important organization working to expose gender parity issues in literary journals and the writing world. This is a mission that means a great deal to me so to have them review my work gives me a lot of feels. Read it here.
My chapbook was also reviewed by two bloggers, Melissa Jennings and Morgan Boyer. Thanks for the reviews fellow bloggers!
This one has a pretty dark message, but I think it was just reflective of how I was feeling that day, after dealing with a lot of people.
Sometimes people aren't perfect, and that's okay.
This is the last #NaPoWriMo post. I didn't get as many poems as I wanted written this year, but I think it was still a fun month of poetry. I'm working on promo for my chapbook, which is exciting but also a lot of work. So I'm still getting things done even if I'm not writing every day. It's fun to play around and see where my poems are evolving or even backsliding. If you want to read more of my stuff, follow me on Instagram.
No idea where the idea for this came along, other than I wanted to write about an island. This is a prompt I used for the Weird Circular for May. I think it's interesting to think about what inanimate objects think, or how they might feel. We forget that we are part of the natural world and it is part of us.
I was traveling over the last two weeks so I didn't get a chance to upload my #NaPoWriMo pieces. While I'm traveling, I find it easiest to make short poems that I can write on my phone. I find poetry everywhere, it seems. This one I wrote while on the train into San Francisco. What compelled me to this topic, I've no idea.
On April 15, the Science Fiction and Fantasy Poetry Association (SFPA) launched the latest issue of Eye to the Telescope, their online journal. I was lucky enough to get to guest edit and I wanted to share what it was like seeing from behind the telescope.
I have so many thoughts about this but I'll try to be brief. Editing a journal is a lot of hard work. I think as writers, it's often mysterious to us what an editor does behind the scenes. For this issue, over 170 writers sent in their poems, meaning there were about triple that number poems to read. I had about two weeks to decide. Here's how I approached it, although I'm sure every editor has a different process:
The poem that ended up shaping this selection was Jess Capelle's erasure of Doctor Who: Nothing O’Clock by Neil Gaiman. I knew I wanted to showcase a variety of styles, forms, and content, while still featuring new writers along with more familiar names. Once I knew I wanted Jess' poem, I was able to look at structure. I fell in love with the weird and uncanny work of Gustav Sack (1885–1916), who is translated from the German by Peter J. King. I must give thanks to Peter for sending me more translations of his work to read. LeRoy Gorman's "Tree Rings" (A very short poem) immediately resonated with me because I have a short story I'm shopping around right now about this very same concept. I had to choose between TWO poems about cats and time and I feel honored to publish the incomparable Mary Soon Lee. She is so kind and someone that young writers can learn a lot from--just look at the sheer number of works she publishes each year if you don't believe me. I adored the simplicity and yet truly fantastic science-inspired concept of Brittany Hause's short poem, "The Philologist." Brandon O' Brien was kind enough to work with me on formatting his fantastic piece "Hunting with Zeno's Arrows" for online.
I'm more than a little thrilled to welcome several new (or new to SFPA) poets to this issue. Eloísa Perez-Lozano's "The Windshield Washer" prose poem is her first-ever speculative publication. Jess Capelle's erasure is her first-ever poetry publication (Simply wowed by that) and Jules Crewe-Kluge is an eighteen (!) year-old writer with a beautiful sense for form--they are certainly a poet to watch.
Perhaps the most difficult part of editing this issue was the sheer number of friends and acquaintances I ended up having to reject. ETTT has a limited budget and thus I was only able to take a few poems. But I feel really grateful to every writer who sent me their work, and I read each poem carefully. I know how much heart it takes to send your work out. Thank you for trusting me with it.
My main goal in selecting pieces was variety and also examining how the works spoke to each other. I have tried to take care in the order of the poems, so I hope you'll read them and enjoy. Also, make sure to read my editor's note.
Holly Lyn Walrath is a freelance editor and author of poetry, flash fiction, and short fiction. Find her on Twitter @HollyLynWalrath
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Holly Walrath's books on Goodreads
ratings: 19 (avg rating 4.21)
Our Space: Shorts & Poetry from the Houston Community
ratings: 4 (avg rating 4.25)
In Medias Res: Stories from the In-Between
ratings: 2 (avg rating 4.50)
The 2017 Rhysling Anthology: The Best Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror Poetry of 2016 Selected by the Science Fiction Poetry Association
ratings: 16 (avg rating 4.31)
ratings: 9 (avg rating 4.67)