Tag Archives: writing

Submissions for Words and Images 2012

…Open on August 1st! ALL are welcome to submit and we hope to see a lot of submissions from USM writers.

We have some guidelines set out, as well as where to send your work all listed right here.

Stay tuned for details on this years fiction/poetry contest, which will be a revival of the Dos Cosas Award, which first appeared in our 2009 issue.

Between the Covers, Part IV

Featured Prose:

Turning Earth, Nancy Antonietti

The End of the World, Ashley Brooks

The Jungle Life, Timothy Rich

The Boardwalk at Midnight, Kris Bertin

Listening to Arvo Pärt, Fred Skolnik

-Girl in the Parking Lot Prophesies
Dan Domench

Ringing True, Christina Murphy

The Things That Slow the Body, Dianne Benedict

Hyenas, Ali Mohammad

Dreaming of Buenos Aires, Alice Simpson

Giving Up, Andrew McLinden

Fat Tanya Boinkin, Jenny Smick

The Editors are not Robots (Part Four): Benjamin Rybeck

bens-bio-picBenjamin Rybeck is the publishing director of Words and Images; from 2007-2008, he served as managing editor. He considers his most important job to be finding the right people with whom to work, and being as he has put together a staff replete with editors who are smarter than he, his job sometimes seems almost ridiculously easy.

Rybeck is a full time English major at the University of Southern Maine, interested in interdisciplinary studies. He is especially drawn to the following: the films of Paul Thomas Anderson and the French New Wave; the stories of Raymond Carver, Flannery O’Connor, and Charles D’Ambrosio; “Winesburg, Ohio”; all things James Bond; and the TV series The Wire.

He’s hoping to find fiction and poetry that all those other idiot literary journals have missed; after all, tons of great stories and poems go to sleep unpublished each night. He’s not looking for “perfect” work, because “perfect” work lacks the rough edges where the soul of the artist can be seen bursting out, trying to struggle free from under a pile of technique, trying to breathe again. Jonathan Franzen’s “The Corrections,” a novel with a million digressions, is preferable to Geraldine Brooks’ “March,” a perfectly controlled story, because “The Corrections” has energy in its imperfections, and “March” seems overworked and smoothed out until it lies dead on the page.

Sometimes he has trouble finding the time to exercise.

The Editors are not Robots (Part One): Seth A. Bishop

Seth A. Bishop is Managing Editor for Words and Images 2009. While a student of Political Science at the University of Southern Maine, he has made it a point to pursue interests outside of his major and, through doing so, has manufactured a relatively unique angle of vision influenced by Political Theory, Sociology, Cultural Studies, and Philosophy. The overarching theme of Seth’s studies has been the exploration of the interplay between individuals and social institutions, be they formal institutions such as the state, or informal abstractions of collective identity. He anticipates the completion of his degree in the Spring of 2009, at which point he intends to take a year off before applying to Graduate programs for Political Theory and a few interdisciplinary Social and Political Thought programs.

Seth’s literary interests are predominantly of the so-called ‘low art’ variety. An avid reader of comics and graphic novels, he considers the comic book to be a valuable yet often ignored cultural artifact that deserves greater attention as both an object of admiration and critical analysis. Toward this end, Seth is currently working on a content analysis of Captain America that examines the perpetually evolving nationalist narrative presented within the comic as well as the unique manner comics deliver collective identity narratives to disparate audiences. For similar reasons as his love of comics, he also appreciates film, science fiction in its various forms, and popular music.

Although his writing is exclusively academic, Seth appreciates reading prose and poetry. If he did not, one would assume he would not work for a literary journal.

Two poems by our poetry editor

Caroline O’Connor Thomas, the Words and Images poetry editor, recently had two poems appear here. They are both lovely – and O Sweet Flowery Roses is a great blog/journal, seeking to the preserve “the fun in poetry.”

Someone has to do it.

Read Caroline’s poems. And give her congrats.

Fast, Powerful, and Punk: A Literary Event

The act of writing should be one of solitary performance – and when the author ventures out into the world for a reading, the result should be a piece of theater.

Come join Words and Images, the University of Southern Maine’s literary journal, for a FREE evening of readings and music, to celebrate the 2008 issue of Words and Images – and, hell, just to celebrate writing in general.

This is writing stripped of all pretension. This is writing that, first and foremost, wants to engage its audience.

The readers include:

MELISSA CROWE, a poet new to Portland, whose work has appeared in Calyx, Seneca Review, The Atlanta Review, and Crab Orchard Review;

DAN DOMENCH, author of the audiobook “Hold Me Fast,” regular fiction contributor to “Portland Monthly,” and a writer with a long history of performance;

STEVE GIBBON, a USM student, who recently attended the Stonecoast Writers’ Conference and is the winner of the 2008 Words and Images Award for Excellence in Expression;

MARK MELNICOVE, a poet and artist known for his performance poetry around Maine – especially his collaborations with the late Bern Porter;

ZACHARY MOSHER, a recent graduate from USM who published his first poems in Words and Images.

The evening’s musical guests include:

AKUDAMA, an indie-rock band from Brooklyn that has had the rare distinction of opening for Arcade Fire (and is every bit as good);

COUGARS KILL COBRAS, a quickly-up-and-coming post-punk band from Portland, Maine, that sounds like all those awesome “alternative” bands you used to listen to in the eighties, instead of Duran Duran and A-Ha.

And, as mentioned above, this event is free and open to the public. What the hell else could you want?

Come and be a part of the performance of writing!


This event is part of a week of public readings sponsored by Words and Images, to take place on or around the USM Portland campus. Keep an eye out for readings earlier in the week by Maine’s Poet Laureate BETSY SHOLL, McSweeney’s author JESSICA ANTHONY, executive director of the Telling Room and poet GIBSON FAY-LEBLANC, Iowa Short Fiction Prize-winner DIANNE BENEDICT, poet/fiction writer/teacher extraordinaire BRENDA EDMANDS, and plenty more!

At this event, we will be accepting donations, which will be split between Words and Images and another group TBA.


Past contributors to Words and Images include: John Brandon, Kevin Brockmeier, Dan Domench, Megan Grumbling, Richard Hoffman, Michael Kimball, Richard Lethem, John Manderino, Wesley McNair, Mark Melnicove, Bruce Pratt, Bill Rasmovicz, Kenneth Rosen, Colin Sargent, Betsy Sholl, Laima Sruoginis, Martin Steingesser, and Shelton Waldrep.

In 2008, we had the pleasure of being able to interview Matt Berninger, from the rock band The National; bestselling author and National Book Award-finalist Jennifer Egan; 3-time Academy Award-nominated filmmaker Todd Field; and Pulitzer Prize-winner Richard Russo.

Namedropping? Hell yeah!

Are you a facebook user?  if so, you can RSVP here: http://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=30352937742&ref=ts

New Upcoming Event!

As Autumn fast approaches, Words and Images is bringing Portland, Maine yet another earth-shatteringly awesome event called Fast, Powerful, Punk: Obviously a Literary Event.  This evening of readings and music on September 25, 7pm at SPACE Gallery, is so epic that I don’t dare to attempt to summarize it in such a small space.  Read about it yourself on our Upcoming Event(s)! page.