Friday, May 24, 2019

A Letter from the Excitable Editrix

It is a known fact that I am easily excited. By things like fruity cocktail beverages, grilled cheese, potato salad, potato chips, tater tots, okay pretty much anything that involves a potato...Oh, and good writing too. To wit, you might ask, what am I excited about right now? So glad you asked. Because June is always epic in Santa Barbara, especially at the Lit Jo.

To start off, let it be known that these overly excitable moments have a tendency to end in publications. Usually after one of the above-mentioned fruity beverages. One fateful evening, tipsy and flashing big puppy dog eyes at my editors, I assured them it would be no problem to add an anthology to our planned two volumes of Lit Jo this year. Why not publish it April 1st, I reasoned, plenty of time to produce and print Volume 3 by June, right? Ha. Ha HAH. From February until the end of May I clung to sanity like a three-toed sloth, on a mad burn of Photoshop, InDesign, proofs, and permission slips. My stalwart editors did not abandon ship, although they may have wondered if I was going down like Ahab, cackling and soliloquying about a whale named Moby. But we pulled it off. Volume 2: Cor Serpentis came out in November; Hurricanes Swan Songs is now on Amazon.

And guess what's coming out mid-June? You got it, Volume 3: Bellatrix. On June 8, we will be publishing an interview here of our featured artist, as well as revealing the cover. Who is our featured artist? What does the cover look like? Oh, just you wait, chickadee!

June 14, and this is a biggy, we will be partnering with the Santa Barbara Public Library and holding a reading of Volume 3: Bellatrix at the Faulkner Gallery. Contributors will read fiction, flash, and poetry. And our singer-songwriters will perform. This is a bigger venue than anything we've "played" before and we will be awarding the first ever "Flash Cat" award for best flash submission. See event details on our FB invite here. And while you're there, be sure to like our FB page!

June 15, we're having a Lit Jo house concert. Our Mistress of Song assembled a beautiful collection of songs about California for Volume 3, and Dennis Russell, Sonya Heller, Randall Lamb, Mark Alciati, and Natalie D Napoleon will performing their music. Interested in attending? Email sblitjo at gmail dot com.

June 16 to 21, this is the real fun! Once again it is time for the Santa Barbara Writers Conference! I will be attending the workshops of at least two of our contributors. Matt Pallamary's Phantastic Fiction workshop is legendary for fomenting fantastical tales, and this year, he will be selecting one of his writers to receive the Santa Barbara Literary Journal Phantastic Fiction Award!

Matt June 2018
Contributor Max Talley will be teaching a 3-day workshop on "How and Where to Submit to Literary Magazines and Online." I went last year and found it immensely helpful in getting ready to send short stories out.

Max at his SBWC workshop June 2018
Volume 3 contributor Perie Longo will be teaching her morning poetry workshop and Stephen T. Vessels will be reviewing manuscripts.

The indubitable Mr. Vessels June 2018
In the wee hours of the night, contributors Lorelei Armstrong and John Reed will be leading the aptly named Pirate workshops. And for the first time, I'll be participating on a panel, "4 Authors Celebrate 4 Genres", which will be hosted by Trey Dowell. There is still time to sign up for the conference, so join us if you want to improve your craft and have fun!

What more could possibly happen in June? I'll be walking in the Solstice Parade, as part of the Pink Party. The theme this year is wonder...and if you're wondering what I'll be wearing, just look for the pink top hat and the ruffled pantalettes...If you see a pink flamingo by my side, it might just be the Mistress of Song, because that's how we roll at Lit Jo!

Silver Webb

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