Thanks to Justin Evans, editor of Hobble Creek Review, I will be helping to edit a special edition of HCR focused on writers of the Gulf Coast Region. Submissions are open. HCR will also have a regular, non-Gulf Coast section, too, edited by Justin.
So, send me some work. I'm honored to be a part of Justin's vision. He's a fantastic editor and a fine poet. Check out his work here and here, and purchase his books here. I appreciate the opportunity be a part of such a great publication.
Please follow all submission guidelines for Hobble Creek Review. Send Gulf Coast-related submissions to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The following editorial statement appears on the HCR website, as well:
Growing up in Port St. Joe, a tiny town on the Florida Panhandle, I hated the place. Hated the stink of the paper mill and chemical factory. Hated the tiny town’s lack of a bookstore and other amenities. Hated how isolated I felt. I wanted to escape that place; I wanted to make a life for myself somewhere else. I dreamed of New York. I dreamed of Los Angeles. I dreamed of a place far, far away, where I’d write great literature and forget that I’d come from what I thought of as Nowheresville, USA.
I never made it. I attended a school close to home, the University of West Florida in Pensacola, some 150 miles west of Port St. Joe. I settled in South Georgia, where I teach writing at a small state college. The Gulf Coast is barely a three-hour drive from my house. I go as often as I can. I love to fish, and I spend a lot of time angling in the bay, the sloughs and the inlets around my hometown.
Perhaps it’s no surprise, then, that over the years, my attitude about my hometown changed. What’s interesting to me, however, is how this change occurred. It was through my writing that I fell in love with the Gulf Coast. Reading southern writers like Larry Brown, Harry Crews, Jake Adam York, Natasha Tretheway, and a host of others inspired me. I found that my most successful writing was about the Gulf Coast. And I found that, somehow, writing about that place changed me in ways that I never anticipated.
Lots of writers have a strong connection to place. One could even argue that the literary history of the United States is made up of pockets of regional writers, from the New York School to the Beat poets who migrated to San Francisco. All across the United States, writers have found their voices in the land beneath their feet.
Because the Gulf resonates so strongly with me, I am honored to edit this special edition of The Hobble Creek Review. I ask that writers who have a strong connection with the Gulf Coast submit their work. You don’t have to be a Gulf Coast native, but I am looking for work that explicitly addresses to the Gulf Coast region. HCR will still be accepting regular submissions, as well, and founding editor Justin Evans will select the work for that section.
Charles Wright once wrote that “All forms of landscape are autobiographical.” And I think he’s on to something. Dismissed and sneered at by certain critics, regionalism isn’t merely writing about landscape. Regional writers are smarter and far more talented than that. To write about our homes is to write about ourselves. To write about anything is to discover it all over again and, to quote another American poet, “make it new.”
O for a muse of fire,