Wednesday, July 06, 2005

Review of Lenox Avenue, #7

My review of Lenox Avenue, #7, is up at Tangent Online. Lenox Avenue is a bimonthly speculative fiction/art zine that pays top dollar -- 5 cents a word, up to $100. Max word count = 6000. Here's what they're looking for: Quirky, edgy, stylish, odd Exploration of cultural myths/traditions not well-represented in spec-fic Magic realism, slipstream, new weird, all welcome Stories in which the characters are immersed in the culture and events, not necessarily outsiders encountering it for the first time Here's a link to their guidelines. Based on Issue #7, they have a smart editorial staff with a good eye for talent. Check 'em out! D.


Blogger Demented M said...

I really liked Rare Bird--that was well written.

Nice review.


7/06/2005 05:29:00 PM  
Blogger Douglas Hoffman said...

Thanks Michelle. "Rare Bird" was hands down my favorite -- I think I made that fairly clear. Check out the author's website. He seems like an interesting fellow.

7/06/2005 06:29:00 PM  
Blogger Demented M said...

Okay, I've been thinking about it and it's been bugging me. I liked the story alot, but it never really explained what the birds were for. What special 'power', or whatever, did they get from the birds-- that is never explained.

As well done as it was, I'm now trying to figure out what the point was with the birds beyond serving as a vehicle to talk about that 'rare bird' true love.
I think the magic of the birds could've been a little more fleshed out to give the story a stronger context.


7/07/2005 11:45:00 AM  
Blogger Douglas Hoffman said...

Nothing's perfect. I see what you mean, though.

I didn't mind the ambiguity because I'd made up my own answers to fit the question. Perhaps the bird song was the WHOLE gift. Perhaps the street vendor had been cursed with these birds -- thus depriving him of a whole host of important phrases -- and the only way he could regain the power to say those words (whether it be "Happy Birthday" or "I love you") was to pass the birds on to someone else.

For me, the unsettling quality of the ending redeemed any qualms I felt about this other stuff.

7/07/2005 02:55:00 PM  
Blogger Demented M said...

I know what you're saying, but for me, the story is empty. Well written, fun to read, but superficial. The birds were the catalyst for the story and they were not developed. Catalysts for a story arc should not be unexplained random-acts-of-magic.

Okay, I'm done now!


7/07/2005 03:24:00 PM  
Blogger Douglas Hoffman said...

Curious, DM: you really liked it initially. What happened? The more you thought about it, the less you liked it?

That's kind of what happened with my wife and Scalzi's book. Her initial reaction was, "Yeah, it was fun." One day later, she was fuming.

See ya.

7/07/2005 05:22:00 PM  
Blogger Demented M said...

I don't hate it not at all, it was a fun story, but the plot doesn't hold up to intense scrutiny and that's a requirement for me as a reader.

Short stories are hard to write, this one at least kept me reading. That is, in of itself, an accomplishment.

What can I say? I'm a demanding consumer. Just look at my movie reviews.


7/07/2005 06:17:00 PM  
Blogger Douglas Hoffman said...

Yes, I did love your Star Wars Episode III review (June 6 over at Michelle's site, in case anyone's reading this besides me and Michelle).

I'm trying to review as a reader rather than a writer, if that makes sense. I hear what you're saying, but I guess I was happy to take Chaponda's story at face value without scratching it too deep.

7/07/2005 07:06:00 PM  
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