Friday, October 15, 2004



Trip's up!

(oh he's a happy bear/he's not crying, and neither should you/or they're gonna find us, and we're gonna get in trouble...)

So now the word is out, official and all: Bob Holman for a spotlight (and a whole lotta fun talking to him over the phone--during the RNC, no less...), and inclusion in this year's Pushcart Prize anthology--news that I've been sitting on for the last 6 months!

Anyway, now I'm gonna go ruin my eyes doing final proofs--but you heard it here first--the new issue's out! Hope you all find a few things worth reading there.

(BTW, the person writing under the name "The Barbaric Yawp"--well, let's just say that I am very, very familiar with his habits, some of which are truly, truly dispicable. Sometimes he writes a decent piece, though. Check him out.)


Congrats! Very nice issue.
Thanks, thanks. Hard work but worth it.

We're very much on the lookout for prose, BTW (hint, hint). Get in the mix, ya know.
Hmmm... instinct, huh? Well, I'm working on three other things already, but you never know. I do have a tendency to go off on tangents...
A writer, going off on tangents?

I'm confused...
A Pushcart Prize? I'm terribly impressed.
So was I.

Not to mention completely surprised.

Prize works like this: until very recently, they didn't take subs from online zines--in fact, seeing some of Bill Henderson's introductions for the anth. for the past few years was a bit of a study in curmudgeonly ludditeism--but that policy changed about 3-4 years ago. There have been winners subbed from online in the past, but none, before this year, from a zine SOLELY based online (like ours is)...I don't know how many other zines might be represented in the upcoming anth. Best American Poetry also yielded to the 'net poetry invasion this year, BTW. Anyway, small press editors submit up to 6 pieces each year--anyone with a small press can sub, and they get, at last count, around 2000 a year (might be more, these days). Around 150-200 tops from that number get selected.

We subbed to get ourselves into practice, and to try to give our submittors a notch on their belt as a nominee...both Tara and I were floored, and very very happy, when we learned in April that one of our noms was accepted. Kowit has an interview on the site as well...he's fairly well established, very personable, leftie, and my first legitimately 'high-profile' interview--which was very game of him, as it was for our 3rd issue.

Anyway, yeah, between that and Holman (who is one of those people who, even if you don't know the man, has been finding ways to get poetry into your life for YEARS now), I've been a seething unit of keep-it-to-yourself for about half a year now.

It is good not to have to do that--and, all congrats to Kowit for the inclusion. You can bet I'm gonna be buying a copy of that anthology this year--even if the only thing it could possibly say about me is that I've got good taste.

Robin--just a personal note, though I don't contribute a whole lot, I enjoy your blog immensely. I suspect if we were ever to share meatspace, we'd have a lot to talk about.
Thanks for the kind words. I've been quite enjoying your blog as well, even though I'm not known for commenting in other people's spaces too often! (I do make exceptions!) (And yeah, I often wonder what would happen if I ever got to meet some of you cool folks who I've met through blog-ville).

I actually was surprised to see the Pushcart Prize extended to purely online 'zines, but since I don't really keep up on that sort of thing I wasn't sure if it was just me being out of touch or actually a new step. It's really an incredible honor, and I really am terribly impressed!!
Robin--treat for you, and a blast from the past, from the intro, written by Bill Henderson, for the 1997 Pushcart anthology:

"Finally a note about what is not here: cyberbabble from cyberspace. Last year a reviewer complained about this cyber omission. Those of you who have sampled Pushcart's "Minutes of the Lead Pencil Club" realize that this editor would like to yank the plug on the electronic revolution that is colonizing this culture. Authors who use "word processors" (a damning term to begin with) and then instantly fire off their stuff over the Internet and consider themselves "published" are under a nasty delusion. There's no instant gratification in this vocation. Terrific literature requires a terrifically long apprenticeship. The chore of writing and rewriting and submission and rejection is a painful but important education. Knocking your stuff out on a Mac is too often like playing PacMan or Doom. Words are not to be processed or toyed with. They are the dearest gifts we have. We try to talk to each other and pray to our gods with words. In words we seek an approach to truth. Words are not cheese or salami, and a machine can't process your dreams and visions for you. And it can't see you properly published either, no matter how vivid the temptation to dash off your inspirations around the world on the Net. The result is almost always cybergas."

Would be interesting, actually, to sit down with the man and ask him some pointed questions about how his attitude toward the advent of word processors and the internet has changed, if at all. Suffice it to say, when, upon learning of the inclusion of Steve's poem, I re-read this introduction, it just made the accomplishment that much sweeter. Thing is, I agree with a lot of what he has to say in the above passage--just not the base assumption: that proper publication is not possible over the net.

Course, Henderson is not the only person to be caught off guard by the success of the net in engaging cultural, in the end, it's amusing to see the above words in retrospect, but not particularly damning. Just a little lacking in vision.

As has always been our goal at Triplopia (which, when first lauched, carried the byline "Spectacles for the Mind's Eye"), we seek to correct those lapses in vision--both in ourselves and in others. That, more than any "creds" earned by gaining inclusion in this venue, is the true reward in this case.
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