Journal of Writing & Environment

Web Rove of Themeless Abandon

by Claire Kruesel

Spring break is supposed to be wild, right? With the first official day of spring, no class, and several days daring to rise above freezing, I felt freed to roam the internet with themeless abandon (and to play a literarily-justified video-game! – it’ll make sense if you keep reading). Here are my Spring-Break-in-Iowa picks, which you’re sure to enjoy regardless of climate:

Interview: Jason Booher, Paper Darts

If you love books (and if you’re here, I bet you do), you likely have swooned over a book cover or twelve. This interview with invigoratingly creative book cover designer Jason Booher should inspire anyone whose optimal horizon contains a book contract to get writing, revising, and hoping that his mind might translate your words for the eye. Each cover is so diverse, so engrossing, that the only way I can categorize his style is “perfect.”

Lemon Wedges, Vanessa Norton (Wag’s Review)

A someone who grew up among towering collections of gorgeous but mismatched chinaware, “Lemon Wedges” (fiction) by Vanessa Norton, in the latest issue (v. 14) of Wag’s Revue, hooked me with its first line: “When I was the age of my youngest boy, I took to gutting the kitchen cupboards and arranging their odd porcelain occupants into a three-dimensional diagram of the human intestinal tract.” The main character is compelling enough to justify this read; for example, she stores makeup (hues: Kittenliver, Plum Dick) in a homemade WWII Military Uniform-cum-storage device (“I’d made this in high school to transport drugs”). A semi-surrealistic, jumpy plot connected by porcelain, makeup, and pregnancy moves us to a strangely resigned yearning for more than empty connection.

124 was Spiteful, Erin Entrada Kelly (Menacing Hedge)

What if your husband started insisting “Call me Ishmael” over and over? What book line would you repeat for eternity, if you had to choose, and which book would make the best weapon? Read “124 was Spiteful” by Erin Entrada Kelly, in Menacing Hedge, and find out.