Archive for the ‘Fun’ Category

Thursday, June 21st

Office Girl.


Hey folks. We’re slowly coming out of a hiatus over here. I hope to be posting more frequently in the coming weeks and basically shaking off the dust. I wanted to let y’all know about a new project that will be going live on the site next week.

I’m a Joe Meno fan. One of the highlights of my time spent pursuing the idea of creative writing was taking a class with Joe. Until that point I hadn’t spent any extended period of time with anyone who’d focused so heavily on the process of storytelling than Joe, nor had I spent time with anyone who’d executed their writing so successfully. Joe lives storytelling. He has breakthroughs with the frequency that most people have sneezes. He’s constantly finding new ways to show moments of tenderness, honesty, hilarity, despair, charm, fear and connection to an audience of folks trying to make sense of the world and the people in it.

At the end of the month Joe will be releasing a new novel called Office Girl. Because Joe is a great guy, he reached out to me to see if I wanted to help promote his book. I said yes before he could finish his sentence.

In the next four weeks we’ll be serializing the first section of Office Girl here on the Annalemma site accompanied by original images from four different artists. I’m really excited about this project, Joe’s writing has the tendency to stick with me like an old friend and the section he’s sharing with us is no exception. In the mean time, click on over to the Akashic Books site for more info and give a look-see at these here blurbs:

Publishers Weekly pick of the week:

In Joe Meno’s new novel, set in the last year of the 20th century, art school dropout Odile Neff and amateur sound artist Jack Blevins work deadening office jobs; gush about indie rock, French film, and obscure comic book artists; and gradually start a relationship that doubles as an art movement. They are, in other words, the 20-something doyens of pop culture and their tale of promiscuous roommates, on-again/off-again exes, and awkward sex is punctuated on the page by cute little doodles, black and white photographs (of, say, a topless woman in a Stormtrooper mask), and monologues that could easily pass for Belle & Sebastian lyrics (“It doesn’t pay to be a dreamer because all they really want you to do is answer the phone”).

Booklist (starred review):

Meno has constructed a snow-flake delicate inquiry into alienation and longing. Illustrated with drawings and photographs and shaped by tender empathy, buoyant imagination, and bittersweet wit, this wistful, provocative, off-kilter love story affirms the bonds forged by art and story.

Kirkus Reviews:

The talented Chicago-based Meno has composed a gorgeous little indie romance, circa 1999…A sweetheart of a novel, complete with a hazy ending.

Marie Claire:

Cultural cred: Along with PBRs, flannels, and thick-framed glasses, this Millennial Franny and  Zooey is an instant hipster staple. Plot notes: It’s 1999 and Odile and Jack are partying like it was…well, you know. Meno’s alternate titles help give the gist: Bohemians or Young People on Bicycles Doing Troubling Things. Cross-media: Drawings and Polaroids provide a playful, quirky element.

Michigan Avenue Magazine:

While Office Girl features illustrations by artist Cody Hudson and photographs by Todd Baxter, its real substance lies in the story itself. Set in Chicago right before the new millennium, Meno, a Chicagoan, explores the start of an art movement through the eyes of two twenty-something dreamers in this novel.

The Stranger, Seattle:

Office Girl might be Joe Meno’s breakthrough novel. Set in 1999, Office Girl tells the story of a pair of young, intelligent drifters who decide to start their own art movement. It’s a stripped-down experience of a novel which means Meno’s crystalline prose has a chance to shine.

Philadelphia City Paper:

Office Girl is a relatively simple love story: You know most of the beats and understand from the beginning how the story needs to end; the pleasure comes from the way Meno hits those beats, how he manages his characters and moments. And some of those moments are really excellent: Jack and Odile’s drift toward a first kiss, for instance, or their lovers’ conspiracy, mirrored in Cody Hudson’s naive drawings. And the heavier ideas that Meno stuffs into the corners around his self-consciously slight characters — like an ongoing struggle with sound and music that’s part of the last-act climax — give the book weight.

Thursday, May 3rd

Wars Are Dumb.

Screen shot 2012-05-03 at 2.57.52 PM

Hey Orlando: if you’re around on May 18th, head on down to Urban ReThink to celebrate the release of Wars Are Dumb: Orlando High Schoolers Write the Wrongs of Adults.

A few months back Page 15 put the call out to Orlando Public High School students to answer, in the form of story or essay, the questions, “What do adults do wrong? How would you do it right?” We got a slew submissions and whittled them down to 15 pieces about politics, environmental issues, family, war, love, fear, death, music, art, sickness, health, and basically the core elements of life itself. It’s a bit mind blowing. Those pieces were collected and given to Brandon Rapert, who illustrated them, then given to Jen O’Malley who laid everything out real nice. We sent to the printers and printed up in to a fancy book which will be on sale at the release party, all proceeds of which will be going directly to Page 15.

Come on out to the party! There’s going to be free food and live author readings and signings from the contributors and a good time to be had by all. Head on over to for more details.

Monday, March 26th

Cataclysm Baby Trailer.

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We made this shadow show for a Matt Bell story published in Issue Six and performed it at the release party. A couple years later Matt releases the story as part of a larger work called Cataclysm Baby. So we thought it might be a good idea to put it down onto film. Mr. Bell came into Brooklyn for an evening and we got weird in the studio space. Hope you enjoy. And check out Cataclysm Baby, available April 15th, 2012 from Mud Luscious Press.

Thursday, March 1st

TONIGHT: Convocation in Chicago.


Hey Chicagoans: Come to Beauty Bar tonight and see some wild humans ejaculate perfection from their mouths. People found out how much fun this was last year. Expectations are high this year. Will they be met? Come and see, come and see.

Tuesday, December 6th

15 Views of Orlando Pre-Sale.

15 Views Front Cover+Spine

The fabulous brains over at Burrow Press are taking their 15 Views of Orlando project out of the cyber world and into the streets: the print version of the 15 Views project is dropping on January 31st, 2012.

If you missed it the first time around, Burrow commissioned 15 writers with some connection to Orlando to write around 1000 words or less based on locations in and around Orlando city limits. The idea was to show a side of the city beyond the misconception of tourist traps and swamps. Lindsay Hunter, J. Christopher Silvia, Hunter Choate and many more talented folks picked up the challenge and made the project a weird, bizarre and engaging series.

Burrow is pre-selling copies right now. If they sell 100, it covers the cost of printing and all proceeds after that go directly to Page 15, a reading and writing education center in Orlando that offers free after-school tutoring and writing workshops for Orlando public school students. Great people, great project, great writing, great book. Can. Not. Lose. Click here to buy.

Tuesday, October 25th

Best American Nonrequired Reading 2011.

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Big ups to Issue Six: Sacrifice contributors Anne Valente and Jim Ruland for snagging a “Notable” mention in Best American Nonrequired Reading 2011. Anne got the hat-tip for her story “A Very Compassionate Baby” and Jim was recognized for his story “Fight Songs”. Both Anne and Jim are fantastic writers and these are great stories. Click here to check out Issue Six where the stories first appeared.

You probably already know about BANR, but if you don’t, I highly suggest picking up a copy. Significantly less dry and stodgy than its series forebears Best American Short Stories and Best American Essays, BANR attempts and often succeeds in showcasing writing equal parts provocative, energetic, inspiring and downright fun. Congrats to Anne and Jim for getting recognized by what is clearly a committee with a keen taste for quality and talent. And thanks to the BANR committee for giving it a read!

Tuesday, July 19th



{photos: Tim Schreier}

We (us, Avery Anthology and La Petite Zine) had a big old time at BookCourt here in Brooklyn a couple weeks back.


A lot of friends came out and showed their friendship publicly. It feels good when this happens. If you’re somebody’s friend you should make it public.


Shooting the breeze with BC manager, Zack Zook. That dude is the dude.


Avery Anthology editor and all-around good human, Adam Koehler.


The great thing about BookCourt is they do a lot of fantastic events, which brings folks in the door and then they gravitate to the beautiful shelves. Hopefully this gets them to buy books cause this place is incredible and it needs to be around for a long time.


The Avery folks brought some original art produced for their seventh issue by Abi Daniel.


The lit mag crew.


Melissa Broder and Dan Lichtenberg from La Petite Zine, they read some fantastic poems from LPZ’s new issue, The Broom.


It’s a bold move to hold a release party for a online mag, all alone up there without a book to hide behind. Mel and Dan are brave.


Avery editor, Issue Seven: Creation contributor, and razor sharp talent =  Nicolette Kittenger.


Avery #7 contributor Jason M. Jones.


Avery editor, Stephanie Fiorelli champions Abi Daniel’s artwork.


Avery #7 contributor Robert Yune.


Adam Koehler pumps up Avery #7. You should check it out, it looks damn good.


Avery #7 contributor Kurt Scott, also finalist for Avery’s Small Spaces Fiction Contest, judged by Junot Diaz (I cannot get over that). Kurt read a great piece about picking up girls in a club, or keeping away from skeezy dudes, whichever way you want to look at it.


Annalemma Issue Seven: Enduarance contributor and indie lit powerhouse Sal Pane represented Anna that night.

I read this piece from Issue Eight: Creation.

Sal read this piece about Alexey Pajitnov, creator of Tetris.

Thanks everyone for coming out!

Thursday, June 16th

Issue Eight: Creation is Available for Pre-Order.

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Barry Grass takes us to Belgium on a journey into the heart of artesian brewer Dany Prignon of the Fantôme brewery. Designer/dressmaker Jen O’Malley walks us through the American history of the bridal gown. Fiction writer Blake Butler talks about the role playing game he invented as a kid. Author/activist Anne Elizabeth Moore shows us the landscape of gender inequality in the world of comic books.

This issue is dedicated to creators, people who make things, people who use ingenuity to work around barriers. To the people who aren’t satisfied with a problem and instead of ignoring it, they face it and try to make it better. This issue is dedicated to the makers of the world.

This item is available for pre-order only. This item will ship July 15th, 2011. Order now and save $5 off the cover price.

Tuesday, June 14th



If you live in New York and feel like doing some pre-party for independence day weekend come hang out with us, Avery Anthology and La Petite Zine at Bookcourt in Brooklyn.

We’ll be celebrating the release of Annalemma Issue Eight: Creation, Avery Anthology #7 and La Petite Zine #27 The Broom. We will be drinking wine and eating baked goods and listening to ridiculous and entertaining words from readers of our respective publications. And it’s at Bookcourt, which is the best bookstore in the continental United States, definitely in the Western hemisphere, probably the entire planet. What’s that? You’ve never heard of Bookcourt?

Come kick off your independence day weekend with us!

Thursday, May 12th

Issue Eight Roster Announced.


[image: Donya Todd]

Behold, a tentative list of folks we’re publishing in Issue Eight: Creation. Thanks to all these talented folks who felt the desire to submit and those who responded to the call. I’m very excited about the stories and essays we’re publishing in the issue, I’ll be giving some details on each piece in the coming weeks. Also, big thanks to this issue’s readers who helped out big time in whittling these choices down: Sarah Bridgins, Sarah Rose Etter, Justyn Harkin, John Kemmick, Nicolette Kittinger, Eric McKinley, Anna Neiger, and, of course, Dylan Suher.

Also, thanks to everyone who’s helping out with our subscription drive (that’s helping us pay for this issue).


I Tried Really Hard to Play

Essay: Blake Butler

Images: TBA

How to Make a Bride

Essay and Images: Jen O’Malley

Uncommon Knowledge

Essay: Gina Ishibashi

Images: Amber Albrecht


Essay: Barry Grass

Images: Paul X Johnson

The Measure of Creation

Essay: Amanda Jane Smith

Images: Susan Hope Lanier


Win a Chance to Be in my Next Novel

Story: Eliza Tudor

Images: Alvaro Tapia Hidalgo

South Beach

Story: Ryan Rivas

Image: Shannon May


Story: Peg Alford Pursell

Image: Yann Faucher

Autonomous in my Rib Cage

Story: Maggie Ritchie

Images: Donya Todd


Story: Paul Kavanagh

Images: Jon Mcnair


Story: Dov Naiditch

Image: Walter Green

And it was Good

Story: Sam Libby

Images: Joe Gunn