Posted inArts & Culture

Book by block

When I think of summer reading I think of book challenges from my local library. I’d sign up as a kid and track my reading habits for the chance of winning something fun like tickets to Six Flags or—more likely—a special bookmark or T-shirt. I never got the Six Flags tickets, but I always had […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Finding poetry in flyover country

“A writer of nonfiction discovers their own authority by telling. The good essays tell. They pronounce. They manifesto. They ask and wonder and feint and layer.” So proclaims author Sonya Huber, in a few-years-old article for LitHub, about unlearning long-accepted rules of writing. Huber puts these proclamations into action in her forthcoming essay collection, Love […]

Posted inArts & Culture

A new home for experimental literature

“We are identifying ‘micro-movements’ and allowing others to explain them to us,” says Jourdain Barton, a cofounder of Chicago’s TEMPER Press. Born to foster experimental writing, TEMPER emerged from such a micro-movement: a bond shared by Barton and her grad school classmates Geoffrey Billetter and Nat Holtzmann. To them, micro-movements are smaller, unidentified capsules of […]

Posted inArts & Culture

‘Parole presupposes that change—a correction—is possible’

Eastern State Penitentiary, in Philadelphia, opened its doors in 1829. Often considered the world’s first true penitentiary, its hallmark six-spoked, wheel-shaped design radiates outward from a central tower, where guards could keep watch over some 500 prisoners. The prison’s creators believed that, through penitence and solitude (now widely considered a form of torture), people would […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Anne K. Yoder on the artist-centered approach of Meekling Press

Editor’s note: Coco Picard spoke with Chicago writer and publisher Anne K. Yoder about corunning Meekling Press and the importance of independent publishing. Edited text from the comic is transcribed here to ease readability. Anne K. Yoder worked as a part-time unionized pharmacist for years. The experience inspired The Enhancers (Meekling Press, 2022)—a hyperreal novel […]

Posted inBooks Issue

For all the 90s church kids

I didn’t expect a book with chapter titles like “Nothing’s Funnier Than Naked” and “Welcome to Ass Planet” to make me tear up on public transit, but Lillian Stone’s Everybody’s Favorite: Tales From the World’s Worst Perfectionist accomplished this feat. Amid the bodily humor, cringey anecdotes, and irreverent one-liners, the Chicago-based comedy author and reporter […]