Bindlestiff skipped February…We’re learning about InDesign.
So, no blog, no publication, nothing for the whole leap-month of Feb. 2016. But submissions are all in, and answered, and contracted — Congratulations to everyone who is going to be out in our first issue!
We’re late so we can do your work JUSTICE.
Also, who knew there was seriously a hobo superhero? I thought for sure that was a futile image search!!
In our mourning phase we realized an important thing. Bindlestiff is a place for people to express themselves. Art Editor, Melissa Rogers, suggested the perfect outlet for our grief — Dedicating our first issue our fallen hero.
We aren’t the first to think of this —
Belgian worshippers have given more than we mere hobos can to speed our household god on his way through the cosmos. We at least feel somewhat comforted by seeing him physically in the sky, clearly where he was always meant to be.
Yet, even though she is moving house, intrepid Melissa is building our own tribute. Stay tuned, it’ll be baked for consumption and offering soon.
We are delighted with this unexpected flow of submissions! Thank you everyone who is submitting. We’ll get some responses out by Christmas — Promise.
Things I’ve learned since receiving submissions for the first time:
- There are a lot more interested people than we had dreamed.
- People are polite!
- People know the drill.
- People get accepted elsewhere quickly.
- There are more poets than fiction writes.
- Flash Fiction is seriously catching on.
- School Rules of how to make a magazine aren’t all they’re cracked up to be.
We’re in love with this process. Getting to see all the writing unfiltered is magic. Seeing what people want to share instead of seeing what other editors want to allow makes us wonder why we didn’t start this earlier.
The northern hemisphere may be getting bleak, but at least it’s time to break out that badass leather jacket. The mythos behind black leather jackets is so thick that shrugging it on is an act of confidence so edged with bravado that I truly start believing I could take someone in a fight. If I had some sort of violent implement with me (trove of ball points not really counting) I do declare I’d start looking for fights. The part of my brain on watch for libel and felonies argues for a peaceful James Dean sort of air. Just compressed heat, not striking out crazy, frenetic. No Blue Velvet incidents.
The weather itself seems to make us meaner too. That’s gotta be the real moral to all those Tim Burton movies set at Christmas — don’t care how many cups of mulled wine get siphoned into a caroler, there’s something deceptive on that singing mug. They know they’re cold and miserable, and that you are too, but still going to throw some cheer in your eye.
That sort of desperation to be happy always, or to simply appear happy always, or something — I can’t put my finger on it. If anyone can voice that in a poem or story, or comic or film, I’d love to see it. Not a theme issue or anything, just a general pondering.
Bindlestiff‘s autumn season has, like everyone’s, been usurped by work and school and Halloween costumes. We hope you will soon be reaping and harvesting all your good work from the last couple months.
One way of telling you’ve done something good is to publish it. Lucky for all of you, we’ll be offering a new venue for just such an occasion!
Send in your best and brightest, dear hobos, the road is a glittering place for sideshows and chrome. We’ll dress you right up!
We’re coming closer to starting our first issue.
It’s a rough & tumble existence for lit mags. Like most of them, Bindlestiff is our work of love on the side. The dirty little affair our day jobs don’t know about. The moonlighting that won’t supplement our incomes.
As we come closer and closer to starting our first issue, we realize more and more just how transient our little project is. Naturally, we look for our peers — other new mags that are igniting around us. Who can we look to as a measure of ourselves.
There are dozens. It’s awesome. We have so much humus to sink our toes into.
Look for mags that are between 1 and 5 years old, however, and it’s a different story. They start dropping away. Either their URLs are MIA or the creators simply left off on an entry in 2012 and never came back. I’m not sure which one is sadder, really. Looking at a forgotten page that hosts so much hope and effort to get the colors right is a real downer. What happened to its creator? Why do these things not come with monkey-back leashes like toddlers?
Hobos like us are persistent, if capricious. We keep moving and working towards our goals.
Right now we’re looking to release our first issue in January 2017, but we’ll keep in touch til then.
The future is now.
Virtual Reality is arriving in a place where impoverished hipsters like ourselves can actually work and afford the technology. Google (blessèd overlords) have made a cardboard headset for as little as $4, and as much as $30. Copy cats are in on the game, and Google is promoting them. You can download videos on your average smart phone.
This tiny and light-weight package is perfect for hobos. It’s an immersive experience of escapism. If you’re stuck in a field or on a train car, just download a beach experience, and you’re set.
Anyone who tries to argue that film is not a form of literature is kidding themselves that the last 150 years of narrative innovation hasn’t happened. We can’t get through one bar crawl without hearing how much our fiction, non-fiction, and poet friends love Game of Thrones.
Match that with the reasonable assumption that audiences keep wanting more immersive experiences every time they’re offered it.
As such, we think this is a good place for Bindlestiff — in the fray of a new narrative! And hopefully someone will make us a virtual Monroe-Bot to make out with.
Looks like most literary magazines take the summer to do all their submission reading! We haven’t gotten that far yet, and hope to spend our dreary autumn evenings gorging on new poetry and prose.
In the meantime, we’re catching up on what all those magazines are putting out. Beach reading for the lit nerds, ah… Our fav finds on the physical shelves are Barrelhouse and the ever popular Poetry.
Barrelhouse is kicking ass in our neck of the woods — DC. They are not just a lit, but “pop flotsam” and “cultural jetsam” as well. They have the sheen of cartoon fun and the brilliance of life usually reserved for college kids. But they’re skilled. The poetry is all restrained and abstracted. The prose is tight and consistent in its surreality.
Poetry just can’t be beat. That cover. That content (check out this the 3rd Wave Feminist Howl front-and-center!). That price. I’ve bought coffee more expensive.
A couple online gems look like art shows for the digital surfer. Lovely…[PANK] and Jellyfish are both easy on the eyes and full of tasty brain treats.
Further along — Check out that Read It Forward competition. It’s a good plug for a different site, but as a small press we hope to be able to do this with our own publishings one day!
We are confused by some people. People, of course, are always going to throw up smoke bombs that defy one’s own personal logic, and gaffs will elude one’s humor. This is one such specific instance of confusion which most individuals around the world seem proud of. Character as defined by a single trait. How does one thing become the defining characteristic of a person?
Remember that scene in Bridget Jones’ Diary where Bridget trains with her friends to be able to introduce fancy so-and-sos to each other at cocktail parties? “This is Darcy who’s a ponce” or “This is Sam who’s a lush.” It’s helpful to have one trait to pin a person on, a target for strangers to land on and build their own thoughts up off of. If you’re not at the whim of a Bridget, what is that target?
For us, it changes throughout the day, and throughout the weeks, and by the end of the year, we seem to have wandered into a new skin. That’s a big part of the reason we chose a “bindlestiff” as our mantra. It goes where we go, and only carries what we need at that moment.