If you do the same, you’ll notice that Issue Eleven of Open Pen is out and about and in greyish mood (just in time for Spring). Here’s a list of bookshops you can pick up your FREE copy of Open Pen from. And please, if you can afford it, pick up a book on your travels. Buying books from your local bookshop is the only thing that’s going to keep them going, longterm. We much prefer the likes of Owl Bookshop to Ladbrokes, so if for no other reason, do it for us.
In Issue Eleven you’ll find the latest Londony column from our dear friend N Quentin Woolf (who has a book out), whilst our bookshop feature is handled by The Society Club‘s Carrie Kania. The cover piece, as announced last week, has gone to Jasmin Kirkbride for her touching tale drawn from the harsh realities of life discovered in youth, The Yellow Moth.
“The moth had revealed itself to her in Oma’s colleague’s holiday house in France. The colleague was absent, encouraging the Fuchsberg’s destruction of the quiet provinces with Uncle Joe’s industrious musical compositions, great-grandmother Ottilie’s complaints and two memorable, near-Italian emotional outbursts from Anise’s mother, Madeline Fuchsberg. The Fuchsberg’s deployed themselves throughout the house as far away from each other as possible, creating a negative equidistance between the seven-or-so spare rooms. Anise and Madeline were stacked away on a bunk-bed in the attic with a vibrant hot-air balloon frieze trailing the ceiling. It was to this room that Anise ran after she found the moth.”
We’ve also got fiction from New Yorker Dr. Irving A. Greenfield, a sinister tale from Durham-based Anton Rose, S. Conde is on hand with a story in the form of a letter to new owner of a house in The Buyers, and Liam Hogan makes his second appearance in Open Pen with the aptly title Elevenses. Finally, we’ve got David McGrath with the laugh out loud satire A Lonesome Snow Leopard. Twitterphiles and writers will love it. here’s an excerpt:
“He gets to work on the first poem of his new collection. He titles it, The Self-imposed Bloodied Axe of Rejection.
I wield the self-imposed bloodied axe of rejection.
It is a decent start. He goes downstairs for his dinner.
The next day, Ulick tries to check in on the progress of Prophet5387 but he cannot remember the password. He tries all of his usual’s—sacrificiallamb, misunderstood, nothingness. None of them work. He tries to access the Gmail account he used to create the Twitterbot. Again, he cannot remember the password. He uses his own Twitter account and searches for Prophet5387.
He cannot believe his eyes. It has attracted 2,011 followers in less than 24 hours. He checks on the sales of Life. Not one copy sold. Something is amiss.”
Look out for a video of David McGrath performing A Lonesome Snow Leopard soon.
Let us know what you think of Issue Eleven. We reckon it’s a great mix. Disagree? As always, let us know.
Thanks lastly to the lovely illustration by equally lovely illustrator Josh Neal.