I'm so grateful to Bending Genres and to Sara Fitzpatrick Comito for the review of Show Her a Flower, A Bird, A Shadow published online.
"Pursell’s rich images and musicality still leave plenty of space to imprint one’s experience while savoring the characters’ seductive gravitational slide through time, space, hurt, and heart."
My friend, the novelist Scott Landers, spotted this cool poster advertising my event at the Cloverdale Performing Art Center somewhere out in the wilds of Healdsburg. Books on Stage takes place this Sunday, Sept. 16, at 2 pm. All the details are here, at the performing arts center website.
If you're in the Bay Area and can make it out to the North Bay, do come! It promises to be fun with wine (and it's wine country, after all!), cheese, and conversation.
A wonderful week for which I'm so grateful. First to RHINO and Chloe Martinez for reviewing Show Her a Flower, A Bird, A Shadow. "These pieces beautifully enact the effort to contain and comprehend intense emotions and experiences. What happens when circumstances—such as those of family, culture, or violence—prevent us from expressing or acting upon what we feel? " Chloe Martinez's insights are so astute and so moving to this writer.
Bending Genre's Robert Vaughn and Meg Tuite: thank you for publishing "Rust" in your latest issue. I'm such as admirer of these two writers, editors, and teachers, and of the journal, that it's a thrill and honor to have my story published there. The piece is an excerpt from my forthcoming book, A GIRL GOES INTO THE FOREST, coming from Dzanc Books next year.
And enormous thanks to John McMurtrie of the San Francisco Chronicle for featuring Why There Are Words! His pick was a complete surprise and so exciting to see.
I had the great joy of curating a folio on the topic of mothering grown children for one of my favorite journals, Mom Egg Review. Here, you can read my introduction to the project, and from there follow each author, Maria Benet, Jacqueline Doyle, Rebecca Foust, Linda Michel-Cassidy, Stephanie Noble, Daye Phillippo, Dorothy Rice, and Angela Narciso Torres to her contribution, ending with mine.
The wonderful picture here accompanies Linda-Michel Cassidy's nonfiction piece, "We Want to See the Sun on Our Faces." Which begins like this: In the picture, we wear caftans and eclipse glasses. My daughter towers over me, a fact I forget until I see it documented. We look like celestial beings, not because we are heavenly or even good in the traditional sense, but because of the light.
I very much enjoyed this Q & A with the wonderful author Middy Friddle. Being compared to Virginia Woolf - what's not to like?
Middy is herself, as mentioned above, a wonderful author - of The Garden Angel (St. Martin's Press), selected for Barnes and Noble's Discover Great New Writers program, and of her second novel, Secret Keepers (St. Martin's Press), which won the Willie Morris Award for Southern Fiction. Read more about her and her other publications here.
I'm stunned and so happy that Show Her a Flower, A Bird, A Shadow has been named 2017 Indies Book of the Year for Literature!
So Show Her a Flower, A Bird, A Shadow didn't receive the Eric Hoffer First Horizon Award for which it was a short-list finalist. But now the book is a short-list finalist for the grand award! And that's exciting!
I've had the pleasure of being interviewed by the amazing writer Sonya Chung, Founding Editor of Bloom. In "Hybridity, Compression, and Shimmer" Sonya writes "Show Her a Flower is a gorgeous collection of short prose that lives in that maddening and exciting liminal space between prose, poetry, and something altogether its own. Each piece is like a crystal—complex, compressed, luminous. As Heather Scott Partington writes at Entropy: 'Pursell keenly and judiciously reveals concrete details of each character’s life so that what transgresses in these fleeting moments is enough to convey a full history; these are stories to be savored and considered one at a time.' Indeed: it took me a few months to read the slim collection, and this, to my mind, is high praise for the book. I experienced what Joan Silber called its 'long, shimmering after-effect.' "
How glad I am that Sonya took the time. She is an astute and perceptive reader and interviewer, and I'm deeply grateful for her engagement with my book. A good interviewer--and reader--keeps me thinking long after the dialogue, helping me to understand and develop my writing. Please take a read to discover what emerged from this Q & A.
Very happy to see my book, Show Her a Flower, A Bird, A Shadow, listed as a finalist in the literary category for this award, the 2017 Foreword Indies Book of the Year. And proud, too, to see the book of one of my WTAW Press authors a finalist in the short story division. Louise Marburg's The Truth About Me: Stories is such a fine book. If you don't have a copy yet, snag one here, and you'll see what all the hoopla is about!