“Turning the page: Same South, new voice?” essay by Lauren K. Denton

Essay by Lauren K. Denton Writers come from everywhere, yet it seems the South produces them at a higher rate than usual. Here, we tell stories—those we make up and others that have been passed down through generations. Maybe it’s easier—or more necessary—to tell stories down South, to put fictional lives on paper to make […]

“A Unique Perspective as a Literary Agent and an Author,” by Johnnie Bernhard

A dual point-of-view as a literary agent and an author gives me a unique perspective into both the traditional publishing and writer’s world.  It often reminds me of the nonfiction bestseller by John Gray, Men are from Mars and Women are from Venus. Men need women; women need men, so, as a facilitator, Gray invites us […]

“From Self-Reliance to Loss of Sovereign Self: The Ghost of Emerson in Walker Percy’s Fictional Poetics”

Essay by Louis Gallo  We rarely associate the names of Ralph Waldo Emerson and Walker Percy, yet both deal with common philosophic and social concerns which make it clear that Percy, like so many writers following Emerson, can be examined from the perspective of Transcendentalism in general and self-reliance in particular.  However remote Percy’s sensibility may […]

“Dancing with Langston Hughes,” Essay by M.W. Rishell

We should always be wary of posthumous publications, as it is likely the author held the work back for one reason or another.  Seldom are things simply lost to time.  But the hunger for more work from our departed authors of legend always overrules these reservations.  The New Yorker has circulated, online on May 30 […]

On Harper Lee’s “Go Set a Watchman”: An Essay

Essay by Glynn Custred There are several ways a novel can become a bestseller. At one end of the scale are the author’s name recognition and heavy investment in an aggressive marketing campaign. At the other end is the widespread appeal of what the story has to say and how well it is said, expressing […]

Writing Without Fear: Poetic Language in Tim Peeler’s “Knuckle Bear”

Essay by Patrick Bizzarro One of the most interesting features of Tim Peeler’s Knuckle Bear is the language spoken by the three characters who enact, through thought processes revealed in the poems they speak, the drama of their social relations. Here is an example of that language and the hierarchy of power it constructs in […]

New Fiction on Black Middle-Class Families and Universal Themes

Review essay by Donna Meredith African American fiction writers have, for the most part, overlooked middle-class families as subjects until recently. Stacy Campbell, Lamarr White, and Barbara Joe Williams are among the new authors producing strong novels with middle-class characters and universal appeal. Their protagonists, all educated professionals, struggle with issues like mental illness, infidelity, […]

Laughlin: Romanticist Extraordinaire, A Memoir

By Louis Gallo Laughlin, Ghosts Along the Mississippi: An essay in the poetic interpretation of Louisiana’s plantation archictecture—One hundred photographs by the author (Bonanza Books, NY—1961) —Clarence John Laughlin, Aperture Monograph (1973) I. I’ve never believed that literature is an ideal conduit for surrealism other than in spurts such as the “Nighttown” episode in Joyce’s […]