Volta Issue Editorial

Dear Explorer of the Arts,

          I am delighted to bring you the Volta Issue of Able Muse. Of recent, Able Muse has been buzzing with evolutionary events that we are very excited to share with you. Between the last issue and this one, we have put together and published the critically acclaimed Able Muse Anthology—published by our brand new Able Muse Press, which will also be publishing the periodical print version of Able Muse starting with the next issue, and also publishing new books from emerging and established authors. Yes, buzzing with activity.
           Indeed, the Volta Issue marks the transition point after which we’ll begin publishing a print version of Able Muse in conjunction with online previews and samples. In this issue we bring you Featured Poet Rose Kelleher, Spotlight Poet Shekhar Aiyar, and Featured Artists Sara G. Umomento and Billy Monday. Sharon Passmore, the Art Forum Moderator at Eratosphere (Able Muse’s online workshop), conducts rare interviews with our two featured artists. Sharon’s interviews are insightful and informative, and I believe that they’ll enhance the appreciation of the art show from our featured artists. Of our Featured Artists, Sharon writes:

I’m very excited about the two featured artists in this issue. Sara G. Umemoto uses digital manipulation to take us on a fantasy voyage through a dreamy, thought-provoking, psychological landscape. Billy Monday avoids manipulating his photographs beyond basic adjustments because he wants his images to maintain the realism of the moment, the location. He says “I like being there!” Well, I sure liked being at both places and I hope you do too.

          This issue also includes a tribute to Rachel Wetzsteon who passed away near the end of last year. The Tribute contributors include Rachel Hadas, David Mason, David Yezzi, A.E. Stallings, Melvin Jules Bukiet and others. I am grateful to our Nonfiction Editor Gregory Dowling who stepped in to guest edit this special feature. See his introduction to this feature here.
           It was only one issue ago that we lost Turner Cassity and Richard Moore, and ran a tribute for the former and pointed to The Hypertext that ran a tribute for the latter. It never rains but it pours, unfortunately. Thus, besides the loss of Rachel Wetzsteon and our tribute for her in this issue, we are saddened by the recent passing away of Alan Sullivan this July—just before the release of this issue. Alan fought a long and courageous battle with leukemia, which for quite a while we suspected might come to an unfortunate end, but as time went on, hoped, vainly, he’d outlast and overcome. Alan was a fine poet who contributed immensely to Eratosphere as one of our first moderators—an Eratosphere stalwart whose critique and mentoring on the Deep End poetry workshop is legendary. He also appeared in the Reload Issue of Able Muse as our Spotlight Poet. He is greatly missed. The captivating memoir by Timothy Murphy, With Alan in the Wilds, was written prior to Alan’s death.
           This issue also includes the usual complement of poetry, fiction, essays, book reviews and interviews. I especially want to point out the Andrew Waterman interview by his son Rory Waterman and new poems from father and son. Be sure to check out Gregory Dowling’s related essay on the poetry of Andrew Waterman. There is more poetry from Brenda Morris, Barbara Westwood Diehl, Katharine Coles, Timothy Murphy and others. There is short fiction with Steve Mitchell’s hypnotic narrative, and Maryann d’Agincourt’s leisurely story that draws you in from the onset; and longer pieces with Dana Reva de Greff’s story that covers the gamut of sensations from humor to dread, and Kevin Dobbs’s wistful, rather exotic and maybe erotic story. I ended up editing this issue’s fiction since our Associate Fiction Editor Thaisa Frank has been overextended with the promotion efforts of her new novel, Heidegger’s Glasses, forthcoming from Counterpoint Press in fall, 2010. Foreign rights have been sold to Holland, Norway, Italy, Spain, France, Portugal, Brazil and Poland. Congratulations to Thaisa on this remarkable achievement! I especially want to thank our new Assistant Fiction Editors Tim Love and John Riley for their invaluable help with editing our abundant fiction submissions.
           Our Associate Nonfiction Editor Gregory Dowling brings you illuminating and masterful essays from André Naffis-Sahely on the Dark Pastorals of Robert Frost and Hayden Carruth, Cristina Ceron’s scholarly essay about Thomas Hardy’s war poems; plus the essays by Timothy Murphy with Alan Sullivan and Gregory Dowling on Andrew Waterman already mentioned above. Julie Stoner reviews two new poetry books—as in previous issues, her original and enthusiastic method illuminates the new books from Rachel Hadas and Julie Kane.
          My gratitude and appreciation go to everyone who assisted in one way or the other with this issue beginning with the contributors; the excellent proofreadng including Janice D. Solderling Julie Stoner, Maryann Corbett, Gregory Dowling and the other editors; and the Eratosphere staff.
          Able Muse remains on a biannual publication schedule as we go into print format. We still accept and read submissions year-round. Subscribe now for the inaugural and subsequent print issues . . . and especially, submit your best now—poetry, art, fiction, essays, book reviews—for a chance to appear in that forthcoming inaugural print issue!
           I hope you’ll discover pleasures and good surprises as you read our crossroads Volta Issue!

The very best,

Alex Pepple,