Saturday, July 08, 2006

The Ledge

The Ledge is a very attractive magazine and I promise I'm not saying that only because I just found out that my story "Saving Melissa" won 2nd Prize in their annual fiction contest, which includes publication in the next issue (No. 30). The story is one I've been working on for a while and in fact recently workshopped at the IU Writers' Conference. Whatever changes that workshop may have inspired, however, will have to wait for the story to appear in a collection. In any case, I'm very pleased that the story will be in a fine magazine.

At the aforementioned IU Writers' Conference, I saw a copy of The Ledge No. 29 on the freebie table and picked it up because although I remembered entering their contest, I'd never seen the magazine. And now I've read the issue and I'm impressed.

The first fiction is "Mr. Spotless" by Jim Thomson, a story about the son of a dry cleaning deliveryman in Pittsburgh. I think I would have structured the story a little differently to take advantage of the retrospection that the narrator attempts at the end, but otherwise it's an enjoyable look at a son who gains respect for his father.

Louis Gallo's "The Oblate of Burgundy Street" was fun/scary because it imagines a world only two years from now in which the President has revoked the constitution, made the Democratic Party illegal, and taken other drastic measures that sadly don't seem as farfetched as they should.

But my favorite story in the issue is Livia Kent's "The Rejectionist" about an idealist who works for a romance novel literary agent whose name is Marilyn Manson and, therefore, attracts submissions of fiction that match the name and not her preferred genre. Meanwhile, the protagonist, is having relationship problems with his girlfriend Sasha, who brought home what she thought was a pot-bellied pig only to discover that it was a Malaysian wild boar. Ha!

There's also some engaging poetry in this issue, inlcuding a piece by Allison Joseph, editor of the Crab Orchard Review.

This is a magazine that's available on newsstands, so, um, when you see No. 30, be sure to pick up a copy!

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