About Our Guest Editor Jason Lalli, AKA Lalli, is the co-founder/entertainment chair of the Phoenix Festival of the Arts, creator and host of Infuse – Open Mic, 3-time author, and is one of Phoenix’s veteran spoken word artists. He uses his gift for poetry as a form of motivational speaking and believes a person does not need to have money to give back to their community. He utilizes his abilities, voice, and networks to their fullest potential in an attempt to make our world a better place. He can be found at: www.lalli-poet.com
About Our Guest Editor Natalie Easton is a poet from Connecticut. She is our “repeat” editor, from Issue #7 – Family. Her work has appeared at Up the Staircase Quarterly, Foundling Review, and is forthcoming at Rust + Moth. Her chapbook, The Leavings, will be available soon from Crisis Chronicles Press. You can find her at www.natalieeaston.com.
Heather Bell’s work has been published in Rattle, Grasslimb, Barnwood, Poets/Artists, Red Fez, Ampersand and many others. She was nominated for the 2009, 2010 and 2011 Pushcart Prize from Rattle, won the New Letters 2009 Poetry Prize, and most recently was a finalist for the 2013 Consequence Prize in Poetry. Heather has also published four books, including one of flash fiction. Any more details can be found here: http://hrbell.wordpress.com/
Jessica Lindsay began poetry the same way she began photography: when someone told her “Hey, you’re pretty good.” Of course, “pretty good” in seventh grade was actually morbidly bad, and it wasn’t until her junior year of high school that she realized that poetry could be something more than teenage angst. So her poetry turned more into snapshots of her life, and when her interest in photography grew, her writing hit a rather large block that she constantly struggles to get through. Well, that and inner peace doesn’t really give an emotional writer much to work with.
To date, all of her favorite poems happen to be the ones about her very dysfunctional family. Figures. She is currently trying to write a novel, but that is forever a work in progress simply because she always wants to skip to the “good stuff”.
She is very shy about people in her life reading her poetry, so it can only be found on Jessicaconk.deviantart.com. She was once published in her community college’s lit mag and got honorable mention for a horrible story back in eighth grade.
Najia Khaled is a poetess who enjoys reading, playing ukulele, and drinking more tea than is probably strictly good for you. She attends University of Rochester and is working on a double major in English literature and astrophysics, the latter of which finds ways to sneak into her poetry rather often.
She can be found devouring the poetry of Sylvia Plath, Anne Sexton, Sandra Cisneros, and Edna St. Vincent Millay at all hours of the night in all manner of strange and indecent clothing. Her hair is rarely the same colour two weeks in a row, which she claims is due to her identity as a Metamorphmagus, but her closest friends swear that they have found empty bottles of Manic Panic in her rubbish bin. She rejects the strict and oppressive beauty standards of the modern day in favour of the strict and oppressive beauty standards of 200 years ago, which is exactly as pretentious as it sounds.
She has been published by Creative Communication, Anthology of Poetry, Inc., and Word Smiths, among others, but the best place to find her is at http://toxic-nebulae.deviantart.com/. Some say that she can be invoked by sprinkling glitter over a field of wildflowers at dawn, but these rumours have yet to be confirmed.
Jorge Martinez was born and raised in Chicago but currently resides in the suburbs of Illinois, which is about as dull as it sounds, though he does love his boyfriend and their menagerie of housepets. Jorge’s a rather unaccomplished writer who’s currently more focused on getting his career in order but plans to make something of his work so he will not have wasted so many hours editing. While he does not declare himself an expert on humor (and is rather straight-laced and uptight, according to our reliable sources*), he is very sarcastic and loves dry, satirical humor or downright slapstick nonsense. Unintentional humor is another genre he deeply enjoys, so if anyone wants to write the script to a B-movie slasher, he will be more than happy to read it and even act in it, provided you pay for his transportation to the set.**
Natalie Easton is a free-verse poet who lives in Connecticut with two rambunctious parrots and a wonderfully obnoxious husband. She believes that the soul weighs more than 21 grams but she’s wary of anyone who will attempt to guarantee her of that.
Natalie has appeared in such publications as Ink Sweat & Tears, Up the Staircase Quarterly, the Wild Goose Poetry Review, and her mother’s scrap book (limited edition). You can find more on her, if you wish, at: http://www.natalieeaston.com
Liz Napieralski lives in the high desert of Santa Fe, New Mexico, and has finally resigned herself to the fact that she’s not leaving anytime soon. If you were to steal her purse on any given day, you’d find a book or two, a whole lot of pens that she’s not that nice about sharing, a notebook shamed by all the scraps of paper she inevitably writes on instead. (And not much cash. So don’t steal her purse. It’s not worth it.)
Liz has worked as an editor and writer for Northern Arizona’s Mountain Living Magazine, FlagLive!, Santa Fe and THE magazine. She appeared in our first issue, Self Portraits.
Liz has most recently appeared in The Legendary, Navigating the Heavens, and The Más Tequila Review (forthcoming, Feb. 2013.)
Rachel Nix grew up in the Deep South of Alabama, and still resides a stone’s throw away from where she ran around as a child. Despite an irrational fear of frogs, she’s pretty much declared herself content with living in the boonies. She does, however, like to take roadtrips and see what hasn’t found The South just yet. Being a big fan of music and nature, poetry seemed a sure-fire way to group all her loves into one. Encouraged by her grandmother at a very young age to value her own thoughts, Rachel has always been a lover of what words can represent. She means most everything she says, despite bouts of sarcasm, which would likely be her second greatest love. Her previously published work can be found at A Sharp Piece of Awesome and Wordsmiths. You can follow her on her very own rinky-dink nook of the Internet, found at chasingthegrey.com, though she almost never updates it.
Kevin McGuirk published poems in Cincinnati Poetry Review and Clifton. It’s not his fault both publications are now defunct; besides, that was a long time ago and the statute of limitations, etc. He has studied with Louise Glück, John Ashbery and Michael Harper and credits workshop experiences with them for his love of raw vegetables.
Here’s a quote Kevin just made up: “To Hell with ghosts; they’re just not getting the job done.” Another: “It’s important to remember that ‘fiction’ always has the last word in ‘science fiction.’” McGuirk cites as his biggest influences Don Bogen and Terry Stokes. “Bogen taught me about precision,” says McGuirk, “and hearing Terry Stokes read ‘Crimes of Passion: The Slasher’ taught me the beauty of nightmares, of surrendering completely to the voice of the other.”
McGuirk is reachable at kevinmcguirk [at] me [dot] com