Editor’s Podcast Appearance

NEW POP LIT‘S Editor Karl Wenclas made a recent appearance on the estimable Contra Mundum Media podcast, which is dedicated to exploring new ideas in the culture and the arts. The host of the podcast is Christopher Laurence.

Take a listen:

Our First Contest Winner

WE’RE HAPPY to announce the winner of our first contest, Tom Ray, for the story “What He Thought Was Right.”

The original Announcement.

The winner:

The prize ($$$) is on its way to Mr. Ray.

The winning story will be published some time during the month of April. We’ll briefly discuss then why it’s an excellent story which incorporates multidimensional viewpoints. OR: You’ll be able to read the story and see for yourself!

REMINDER: This is just the first of several contests with monetary prizes. Soon: one involving our Open Mic feature.

DON’T MISS ANY OF IT!

The Board

NEW POP LIT ANNOUNCES ADVISORY BOARD

DO WE have all the answers? Not at all! As we move forward, we’ve decided to enlist observers for advice and input, laying the groundwork for improvement and growth. Therefore: an Advisory Board.

We start with five individuals who’ve all been published at our site or/and our publications and are supportive of what we’re doing. They represent a range of ages, writing styles, thought patterns, experiences and viewpoints. The idea is to have this project looked at three-dimensionally, while maintaining an overall positive vibe, which is critical for the success of any endeavor– especially one as ambitious as ours.

(We intend to add more names to the Advisory Board, as this project moves ahead.)

The five are:

NICK GALLUP: Accomplished short story writer. Among his several feature stories for us was “Just Another Silly Love Song.”

CHRISTOPHER LANDRUM: Literary historian, essayist, and theorist. His feature story for us was “The Age of Insomnia.”

TOM PREISLER: Talented musician and poet. Tom’s poetry feature for us was “Love Poetry/Prose from Tom Preisler.”

CHRISSI SEPE: Novelist, story writer, and memoirist. Chrissi has written for our zeens ZEENITH and Literary Fan Magazine. Her online story feature for NPL was “We Love to Watch Zee Cockroaches.”

FRANK D. WALSH: Long-time Philadelphia poetry icon. Frank’s poem “Spectre of the Rose” was excerpted in Extreme Zeen #1, and also here at our site.

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(Again, we’ll be adding a few more names– more input, more viewpoints on what we’re doing.)

State of the Site 2022

NEW POP LIT ENTERS A NEW YEAR

THE BIG NEWS for the New Pop Lit project is our receiving a “Creators of Culture” grant from a wonderful Detroit-based arts organization named Culture Source. As near as we can determine, we qualified based on several criterion:

-Our EIC’s long history of promoting overlooked writers, notably in the 2000s with the Underground Literary Alliance.

-New Pop Lit’s focus on artistic innovation and design, including with our one-of-a-kind publications. “Craft publishing”: the idea to make our publications as creative and non-generic as possible.

-Our continued experimentation with literary form. This includes our behind-the-scenes effort to completely reinvent the short story, ongoing.

The starting point for everything we do is that the literary status quo isn’t good enough.

THE FUTURE

We’ll use the graciously-awarded funds not solely to keep this project operating (it’s been touch-and-go at times), but chiefly to discover and spotlight new writing and artistic talent, with more focus on talent in metro Detroit and environs.

Toward those ends, we’ll hold a contest or three, with monetary prizes.

The grant will also enable us to create more print publications. A portion of the award will be spent on necessary equipment and supplies. (Notably, paper and ink!)

The intelligent universe has conspired to keep us ongoing a while longer. As long as New Pop Lit lasts, we’ll aspire to achieve amazing arts breakthroughs– or at least one!

Stay informed via our Coming Soon page. Thanks.

XXX

Welcome 2022!

THE PAST TWO YEARS have been tough ones for us, as for a lot of people. We plan to turn things around in 2022 (have already begun to)– and turn New Pop Lit into a more viable and exciting project.

Within days we’ll post at this blog a “State of the Site” announcement discussing what’s been happening.

IN THE MEANTIME, a few goals:

1.) A lot of talented new writers are out there. We haven’t failed to notice. (Good poker players that we both are, we don’t miss a thing.) We intend to connect with more of those writers.

2.) We have to do a lot more to sell our unique aesthetic ideas to literary people, and beyond. We’ll do so.

Those ideas center around:

DESIGN

New designs of writing and presentations of writing. For both aspects, we favor a modified 20th century modernist aesthetic. Meaning, clear, colorful, and stylish. Cultural chaos is everywhere. To be truly different, an arts project should offer an alternative to the chaos. Escape from the madness.

CLARITY (of thought and presentation) is important to us, as a foundation to build upon in endeavors to connect literature to a larger swath of the general public.

3.) At some point soon enough we’ll need to add more contributors to our staff– those in general synch with what we’re about, who can bring with them new ideas to supplement ours. As a project we’re foremost an expression of ideas.

Currently KMC and I work drudge day jobs. But give us enough time and help and we’ll unleash the full potential of this ambitious project. That’s the goal.

Thanks for your interest!

Karl Wenclas

Our Pushcart Nominations for 2021 and Why

THE REASON FOR OUR CHOICES

THE GOAL with Pushcart nominations isn’t the nominations themselves– though they’re important in giving plaudits to many of those generous enough to let us publish their work– but to have a nomination selected for publication in the collection. Toward that end, every year we’ve been sending the work of our nominees in an increasingly eye-catching, colorful presentation. (Consistent with our aesthetic.) This includes envelope, cover letter, and tear sheets of the works themselves. “Is it possible to stand out among hundreds, maybe thousands of mailings?” is the question.

IN the materials Pushcart Press sends publishers, they make it clear they prefer nominations from actual print publications. This is in keeping with their name. Though we ran an excellent array of stories, poems, and non-fiction at our site, from some of the best writers in the literary realm, we’ve decided this year to choose our nominations strictly from our two 2021 print publications. “Zeens”– which in their ethos and reality embody everything Bill Henderson sought to honor when he began his annual anthology. Zeens– in-house produced; hand made– define an upstart press.

The selections we’ve made from the two issues are outstanding. Attention-getting themselves?

HERE ARE OUR CHOICES:

From Literary Fan Magazine #1, published March 2021:

-“How I Survived 2020,” non-fiction by Chrissi Sepe.

-“On Translation,” non-fiction by Andrea Gregovich.

From Extreme Zeen #2, published June 2021:

-“Black Hole,” poetry by Rose Knapp.

-“Tom Preisler 4,” poetry by Tom Preisler.

-“Fuel Injection,” poetry by Tom Will.

-“You Are You,” fiction by Jo Bloomfield.

Many thanks to all the writers online and off who allowed us to feature their work!

Where’s the Literary Underground?

FINDING THE UNDERGROUND

WHERE is underground culture?

NO ONE online is underground. We’re on a system this instant– the Internet– that was initiated and in large part paid for by the United States Defense Department. An electronic arrangement where every word can be recorded and tracked with a few keyboard clicks.

With our new state-of-the-art print zeens, we at New Pop Lit are partially underground. They’re handmade in-house, and unregistered. No barcodes.

Why is this important? Because print underground literature is an actual alternative– samizdat!— a free space of ideas not subject to self-appointed hall monitors and censors. Breaking the hive mind. No bureaucrats, official or unofficial. In the tradition of Thomas Paine, Davy Crockett, Walt Whitman, Stephen Crane, Robert McAlmon, the Beats– and including Alexander Solzhenitsyn and a host of other international samizdat writers. The genuine article. The authentic American yawp.

THE ANALOG EXPERIENCE

We’ve begun exploring ideas behind new analog culture (vinyl, zines, film) in a newsletter, The Analog Experience. We’ll soon send copies to our “prestige” customers– those who’ve purchased three or more of our zeens. BUT you can subscribe to four issues now at our POP SHOP.

Doing so will keep you abreast of underground happenings, ideas, and debates. Plus in some small way it keeps this project alive.

Consider it a door to another world. A portal to underground culture.

XXXX

Fight the Monolith!

Which Side Are YOU On?

c/o Kamil Grzybek

We are watching in real time the conglomerization and monopolization of everything.

The gigantic corporations every day become more gigantic. Amazon WalMart Google Disney Apple Microsoft CVS Facebook growing larger encroaching over more real estate removing privacy small business competition independence options and they decide who’s given a platform is allowed to speak to market to express contrary opinions or ideas.

We’ve all become members of the Herd. Everyone is plugged into the Hive.

HOW do we get out of it? Is there a way to escape?

YES! The escape is in new analog culture. This includes authentically-independent literature, of the kind offered at New Pop Lit‘s POP SHOP. We’re making plans to move more of our operation offline as we operate under the radar screen of mass A.I.-generated conformity, orthodoxy, and groupthink. To stop having everything monitored and recorded online is the first step toward living once again as free-thinking beings. Our literature, if nowhere else, should be an intellectual refuge free from raging ideological mobs left, right, and center– the blind unthinking stampeding throngs on all sides.

Escape into Art– and freedom.

(The contents of our upcoming analog in-house-produced newsletters as well as our artistic print zeens now on sale are UNavailable in pdf form or any other way on the Internet, except for brief glimpses used for announcement purposes.)

XXX

The Writer In a Suitcase ™

NOW AVAILABLE!

Popping up in writing programs across the country!

The Writer In a Suitcase ™ comes packaged in a box, and his mind– what there is of one– exists in a box. More, he puts all the people he meets into mental boxes, with labels on them. He perceives the world strictly through well-ordered labels and boxes.

Ease of Use! There’s no need for The Writer In a Suitcase ™ to monitor himself, as so many other writers now are doing. This writer comes pre-screened, proper acceptable attitudes built in, so to speak. There is zero possibility of The Writer In a Suitcase ever thinking an untoward thought, much less saying one.

Ease of Storage! At the end of a day of writing or editorial duties, The Writer In a Suitcase ™ can be put safely away in a drawer, there to be retrieved in the morning without a single change in perception, ideology, or beliefs. Guaranteed!

Though his literary style may be rather wooden, bloodless and humorless, without the failings of normal writers, this is small price to pay for the predictability of his writing. No surprises! No sarcasm, sneering, anger. No hate or lust. No mocking or violence or thunder: Nothing. Not a single self-generated emotion. What comes out of The Writer in the Suitcase‘s mouth is only what you the artistic gatekeeper put into it. This writer is utterly completely safe.

Order yours today!

-K.W.