Contributor Update, Elissa Washuta

Join Superstition Review in congratulating past contributor, Elissa Washuta, for her forthcoming book White Magic, out April 27th. Elissa, in this collection of essays, “writes about land, heartbreak,… colonization,…life without the escape hatch of intoxication, and… how she became a powerful witch.” “She interlaces stories from her forebears with cultural artifacts from her own life—Twin Peaks, the Oregon Trail II video game, a Claymation Satan, a YouTube video of Stevie Nicks and Lindsey Buckingham—to explore questions of cultural inheritance and the particular danger, as a Native woman, of relaxing into romantic love under colonial rule.”

“Elissa Washuta’s newest collection of essays is coming out in 2021—and they may be exactly what you need right now.”

O, The Oprah Magazine

To pre-order your copy of White Magic click here. Also, be sure to check out Elissa’s website and Twitter as well as our interview with her in Issue 17.

Contributor Update, Heather Altfeld

Join Superstition Review in our congratulating past contributor, Heather Altfeld, on her new book, Post-Mortem. This poetry collection, an already selected winner of The 2019 Orison Poetry Prize, spans across ages, cultures, and species, as it celebrates this planet as well as all human kind’s creations. Altfeld in her collection is expansive in both her material and style, with her use of many different poem shapes, including “prose poem sequences, sestinas, kaddishes, and obituaries,” and her wide ranging topics, such as “mythical creatures, historical lives, or contemporary culture.”

“An extended meditation on language, an atlas of the visible and the invisible, as well as a memorial book to all that is lost and will be lost to us, Post-Mortem is a brilliant, baroque, and word-crazed collection of poems. While the primary mode of the poems is elegiac (many taking as their forms obituaries, autopsies, and kaddishes), one cannot help but delight in Altfeld’s reverie and in the breadth and depth of her inquiry, her exploration, her katabasis as she leads us like Virgil through a stunning and elaborate posthumous world.”

Eric Pankey, judge of The 2019 Orison Poetry Prize

To pre-order your copy of Post-Mortem click here. Also be sure to check out Heather’s website and Twitter as well as her past work in Issue 10, her guest post on “Unpacking the Library of Childhood”, and her other guest post on “Assigning Solitude.”

Contributor Update, Peter Ho Davies

Join Superstition Review in congratulating past contributor, Peter Ho Davies, on his new book, A Lie Someone Told You About Yourself. Tracing “the complex consequences of one of the most personal yet public, intimate yet political decisions a family can make: to have a child, and conversely, to choose not to have a child”, this novel tells of a “first pregnancy… interrupted by test results at once catastrophic and uncertain” and a “second pregnancy [that] ends in a fraught birth, a beloved child, the purgatory of further tests—and questions that reverberate down the years.” Peter, in his novel, asks and explores the questions, “When does sorrow turn to shame? When does love become labor? When does chance become choice? When does diagnosis become destiny? And when does fact become fiction?”

“A brilliant book about modern marriage and parenthood, about choice and its fallout, that is hilarious and devastating, both true-to-life and a comforting fractured parable for our time.”

Elizabeth McCracken, author of Bowlaway

To order your copy of A Lie Someone Told You About Yourself click here. Also, be sure to check out Peter’s website as well as our interview with him in Issue 19.

Contributor Update, Susan Wingate

Join Superstition Review in congratulating past contributor, Susan Wingate, on her forthcoming book, Bobby’s Diner, out March 31st. Winner of The 2020 Best Fiction Pacific Book Award and the first of a series, this suspenseful fiction novel explores the themes of life, love, death, grief, pain, loneliness, and redemption, as it details “a woman trying to find herself in a town where nobody wants her.” The story follows Georgette Carlisle who, fifteen years ago, went to the town of Sunnydale and fell in love with Bobby, who was not only “the owner of a diner named after himself, but… was also married.” Bobby has now died and “left his restaurant to both women.” However, trouble ensues as a Zach Pinzer begins to want the property for his own project and “is willing to kill to get what he wants.”

“A breathtaking story that will fill you with joy and laughter, Bobby’s Diner is a great read for any book lover.”

Coffee Time Romance

To pre-order your own copy of Bobby’s Diner click here. Also be sure to check out Susan’s website and Twitter as well as her past work in Issue 1.

Contributor Update, Pete Stevens

Join Superstition Review in congratulating past contributor, Pete Stevens, on his new chapbook, Tomorrow Music. Winner of the Map Literary Rachel Wetzsteon Chapbook Award, Pete’s collection of short stories is rhythmically written, exploring the topic of yearning for more than you have and falling for an illusion.

Tomorrow Music is aptly titled. These stories pound out futuristic polyrhythms, propel us hurtling through time. Pete Stevens has a unique voice and a rich imagination, and the work in this short volume is melodious and vivid and very much alive.

Adam Wilson, author of Sensation Machines

To order your copy of Tomorrow Music click here. Also, be sure to check out Pete’s website and Twitter as well as his past work in Issue 21 and his Authors Talk.

Contributor Update, Dinty Moore

Join Superstition Review in congratulating one of our past contributors, Dinty Moore, on his forthcoming book, To Hell with It: Of Sin and Sex, Chicken Wings, and Dante’s Entirely Ridiculous, Needlessly Guilt-Inducing Inferno, out March 1st. In response to Dante Alighieri’s Divine Comedy, Dinty, in his novel, contemplates religion and the feelings of inadequacy it can cause, through a use of various religious texts, stories from his own life, reflections of his childhood, and religion’s own influence. In doing so, Dinty explores the questions of what “the world be like if eternal damnation was not hanging constantly over our sheepish heads” and why “we persist in believing a myth that merely makes us miserable?”

“Dinty W Moore might say, ‘to hell with it!’ But he doesn’t mean it. He’s too good for that, and too funny—Kurt Vonnegut funny—and even with his head in a bucket of county fair chicken, too wise to tempt the fates. To Hell with It is a madcap, deep, hopeful, absurd, learned, solemn, silly, and somehow redeeming look at the hell we make for ourselves, the hell the world offers, and the heaven to be found if only we look in the heart of each of our hearts, plus cartoons!”

Bill Roorbach, author of Life among Giants

To pre-order your copy of To Hell with It: Of Sin and Sex, Chicken Wings, and Dante’s Entirely Ridiculous, Needlessly Guilt-Inducing Inferno click here. Also, be sure to check out Dinty’s website as well as our interview with him in Issue 3.

AWP 2021 Conference

AWP-logo

Join Superstition Review in attending the Association of Writers and Writer Programs’ 2021 Conference, March 3rd-7th. “The AWP Conference & Bookfair is the annual destination for writers, teachers, students, editors, and publishers of contemporary creative writing. It includes thousands of attendees, hundreds of events & bookfair exhibitors, and five days of essential literary conversation and celebration.”

This March the conference will be held virtually with some events being prerecorded and premiered at specified dates and times and others being held live (with text-based Q&As). Additionally, AWP has now made it possible for registered attendees to create their own plan for the conference, as they will “receive access to a separate virtual conference platform” where they can “browse all events, read presenter bios, and create [their] own personal event schedule.”

We look forward to seeing you there!

To learn more as well as to register to attend the 2021 AWP Conference click here.

Contributor Update, Kate Cumiskey

Join Superstition Review in congratulating past contributor Kate Cumiskey on her forthcoming poetry collection, The Women Who Gave Up Their Vowels, out June 11th. This collection spans across several generations, showcasing a family in a Florida beach town. As Kate writes, she gives voice to many characters throughout her narrative, including to the “daughter, sister, wife, mother, grandmother, neighbor and teacher poet.” Through Kate’s poems and her exploration of both the town and the family within it, Kate expresses her love for this place as well as the people of her past and present.

Like a painter whose landscapes always have human figures in them, these poems present family, friends, and lost loved ones in vivid settings. Her mentor and friend, the late Robert Creeley, would be proud. It’s a great pleasure to see Kate Cumiskey‘s latest poems gathered in this fine book.

–Peter Meinke, poet laureate of Florida

To order your copy of The Women Who Gave Up Their Vowels click here. Also be sure to check out Kate’s website , as well as, her Authors Talk and work in Issue 23.

Contributor Update, George Saunders

Join Superstition Review in congratulating one of our past contributors, George Saunders, on his new book, A Swim in a Pond in the Rain, out now. “For the last twenty years, George Saunders has been teaching a class on the Russian short story to his MFA students at Syracuse University. In A Swim in a Pond in the Rain, he shares a version of that class with us, offering some of what he and his students have discovered together over the years. Paired with iconic short stories by Chekhov, Turgenev, Tolstoy, and Gogol, the seven essays in this [New York Times Bestseller] are intended for anyone interested in how fiction works and why it’s more relevant than ever in these turbulent times… A Swim in a Pond in the Rain is a deep exploration not just of how great writing works but of how the mind itself works while reading, and of how the reading and writing of stories make genuine connection possible.”

“One of the most accurate and beautiful depictions of what it is like to be inside the mind of a writer that I’ve ever read.”

Parul Sehgal, The New York Times

Click here to order your copy of A Swim in a Pond in the Rain. Be sure to also check out George’s website and Twitter, as well as, our interview with him in Issue 12.

Superstition Review Staff Book Recommendations

Join Superstition Review in reading our favorite books. Below is a list of recommendations from Superstition Review’s trainees and interns.

I recommend On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous by Ocean Vuong. Written in letter format, Vuong’s story of his life as an immigrant is told with vulnerability and grace. He remembers his childhood in the US along with the stories that his mother and grandmother told him from their lives in Vietnam. Throughout the novel, Vuong realizes truths about himself and his family. I was immersed by the lyrical style and was impressed by how Vuong’s imagery stood out- this truly is a unique novel.

Madeline Lewis, Content Coordinator

I’d like to recommend Jay Heinrichs’ Thank You for Arguing because I have found it to be a very useful guide in learning the art of persuasion and the power of compromise through agreement. It’s a fun read with the author’s humor and difficult concepts are simplified for the average reader. I would highly encourage people to give it a read since it’s an entertaining and informative book.

Kayla Morales, Advertising Coordinator

Born A Crime by Trevor Noah. This book is an autobiography about Noah’s childhood in apartheid and post-apartheid South Africa. Being mixed-race, Noah was literally a crime, and couldn’t be seen in public with neither of his parents. It’s a hilarious and mind-opening story about race, identity, and family.

Khanh Nguyen, Trainee

My book recommendation is Children of the Land by Marcelo Hernandez Castillo. It is a memoir and it is absolutely heart wrenching, captivating, and beautiful. Although it is a memoir, its form becomes poetry and then prose and then narrative and it is so intelligent! It is also great to learn about immigration issues in the United States and it is so relatable for Latinx immigrants in the United States. I found a home in this book. 

Carolina Quintero, Poetry Editor

Welcome to Night Vale by Joesph Fink and Jefferey Cranor. I chose this book because I absolutely love the podcast that led to this book. The characters are compelling, as is the world that the two authors have created. But, most of all, I love the writing style of the Welcome to Night Vale series. The unorthodox descriptions and the ways that the authors play with tropes are so interesting to me, and I love to read interesting stories about interesting people.

Charlie Saifi, Social Media Manager

Middlesex by Jeffrey Eugenides. Middlesex explores gender identity and the problem space of societal norms and expectations of gender roles. The novel follows a Greek family, particularly an intersex individual named Cal, as they hide, ignore, understand and accept that their gender identities don’t match those shown in and perpetuated by popular culture. A beautifully-written, page-turning story, it’s no surprise it won a Pulitzer Prize. I love this book because it challenges gender stereotypes and investigates the complexities of defining people. 

Sara Walker, Trainee

The Dreamers by Karen Thompson Walker. This book is about a small college town that is plagued by a sleeping sickness. The difficulties faced by Walker’s characters mirror some of the current challenges we are all facing during the global pandemic. Reading this novel inspired me to consider how important it is to take care of one’s community in trying and uncertain times. Compassion and empathy can get us through any hardship.

Erin Peters, Student Editor-in-Chief