Summer Fiction 2000

Light Among Clouds
The weather for writing is always right. Whether you’re holed up in a cabin up North or relaxing from a hard eight on the job or steaming in a club downtown, when the feeling hits, the need to write that poem or story makes hot or cold, rain or shine, day or night irrelevant. The 100+ writers who participated in MT’s Summer Fiction 2000 know that feeling. In page after page of strong entries, they gave evidence of their hard work and commitment — and this year’s finalists are a soulful crew of wordifiers if we’ve ever had one.

The judges

Selecting the winners were four metro-Detroit writing professionals, representing a variety of ideas about excellence and craft:

Lynn Crawford is the author of two books of adventurous prose, Solow and Blow, and a chapbook, Holiday. She covers the Michigan art scene for the magazine Art in America.

Lolita Hernandez writes deeply felt meditations on community and identity in the Motor City. Her recently completed collection of stories, This is Our Song for Today, is based on her 22 years at the Clark Street Cadillac plant.

Ted Pearson’s lyrically experimental poetry reflects his interest in jazz and world music. Evidence: 1975-1989 is a large selection of his work. Upcoming is a poetry suite, The Devil’s Aria.

Performance poet Khary Kimani Turner is familiar to MT readers for his takes on hip hop and R&B. He’s also the founder-leader of the Black Bottom Collective, a "po-hop" ensemble (three voices, drums, bass and DJ).

The artists

The image on our cover, Now Performing (2000, oil on linen), is a photo-realist vision of Detroit’s alternative performance space, 1515 Broadway, by Stephen Magsig, whose June show at Lemberg Gallery in Birmingham, "Urban Landscapes," presented a selection of his paintings of Detroit and New York.

And the untitled drawing (2000, graphite on paper) on this page is by abstract painter Rick Vian, who has recently shifted focus to a series of naturalistic drawings of trees from various sites in Michigan. He is represented by Birmingham’s Robert Kidd Gallery.

Special prize

MT’s gratitude goes out to the Walloon Writers’ Retreat (at Michigania on Walloon Lake) for its generous award of a guest enrollment this fall to one of our selected writers. A consensus pick by the poetry judges, Steven Rydman will receive free registration, meals and lodging during the weekend of Sept. 28-Oct. 1 and will take part in workshops, panel discussions and readings with authors Joyce Maynard, Michael Moore, Keith Taylor et al.

Summer Fiction 2000

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